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From Boom to Bust

In the fall of 1914, one of the last big stampedes for gold occurred. Men dropped everything and headed for the Tolovana which resulted in the town of Brooks, Alaska, springing up almost overnight. Later, the name was changed to Livengood, and today there is nothing left of it.

Faribanks Daily Times- October 21, 1915

BROOKS LOOKS LIKE DAWSON OF LATE 1890’S

Returning to Fairbanks after an absence of several months, during which time he was freighting between the log jam and the West Fork of the Tolovana river, Leonard Heacock arrived in town last evening. He was accompanied by Thomas Carr and Arthur Heacock, who went to the new camp last week. That Brooks has quite the appearance of Dawson in the early days of that camp is stated by Leonard Heacock, in that the building activity reminds him of the days when everybody was preparing for the first winter of the Klondike strike.

The main street in Brooks is 1,400 feet long and for the whole length buildings are going up rapidly. The Moody and Fisher sawmills have been working overtime, and the lumber is hardly off the saw before it is on the way up the creek to some building. Many of the old-timers have the foundations laid for their buildings but have been unable to get the lumber for the upper parts of the structures.

During the last month, he reports that there has been little active prospecting, owing to the fact that everybody was preparing for winter, but from now on, as the buildings are completed, the men will turn their attention to their mining ground.

More than ever the residents of the new camp are convinced that it is a winner and they are preparing to take advantage of the opportunities offered.

Note: There has been active gold mining going on at Livengood ever since the big strike happened, 104 years ago. There was even a small dredging operation there in the 1940s. Today there are a handful of mines still in operation, but the city of Brooks later known as Livengood is long gone. Arthur & Leonard Heacock along with Thomas Carr were all members of Igloo No. 4. This fading history nugget has been proudly brought to you by Men’s Igloo No. 4 and Women’s Igloo No. 8 of the Pioneers of Alaska.

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