John Bogan came from Illinois with his wife Annie via Alta, Utah. He managed to acquire a few claims in Park City about 1880 and formed the Bogan Silver Mining Company. He dug a shaft in the middle of what is now the Claimjumper Run at Park City Mountain Resort ( just east of the ore bin). In the trees above, he also worked the Cumberland Incline, following an ore vein. Though some promising strikes were reported, it takes money to develop a mine, and Bogan could never get the backing he needed to hit the big time. Soon he was in debt to Ascheim General Store, giving up 5000 shares of his company in settlement. M. S. Ascheim’s nephew Solon Spiro purchased those shares and took over the company, renaming it Silver King Consolidated. In the early days, “King Con” included the Little Bell and Lucky Bill Mines, which Spiro later sold to the Daly West as he focused on the old Bogan properties.
Eventually the Bogan shaft (on the Claimjumper Run) was deepened to. Above ground, the physical plant (of which the remaining ore bin was only a small part) included 3 connected bunk houses with reading and recreation rooms, lockers, shower baths, hot and cold water and electricity. There was a fireproof powder magazine and a complete system of drains, which carried sewage away from every building. A large shaft house 40’ x 125’ housed the headframe and hoisting works to lift the valuable ore to the surface. An overhead tram then carried the ore in buckets down to the mill/concentrator, located near today’s public works building on Ironhorse Drive.
Unfortunately, despite suing the Silver King Coalition for underground theft of ore and receiving a court judgement of $900,000, King Con faced decreasing metal prices after WWI. Stockholders were unhappy with having to pay assessments with no prospect of dividend payments in the near future. In May, 1924, the King Con sold their 1400 acres of surface rights, shafts and the tunnels and mine workings including the Bogan Shaft for $600,000 to the Silver King Coalition.
Saving the King Con Counterweight
When installing the Zip Line at the base of Park City Mountain Resort, construction managers decided to move this old feature, rather than demolish it. Because of their thoughtful foresight, we were able to stabilize this enduring relic of the King Con Arial Tramway, which stretched from the shaft on Claimjumper Run (where the large ore bin is located) down to the King Con Mill near the present Park City Public Works Building. It is particularly illustrative of the similarity of both the old overhead mining tramways and current ski lift technology in that the cable must be held taut by a heavy counterweight. This was the first project Friends of Ski Mountain Mining History planned and completed in 2015/16.
Engineering: Calder Richards Consulting Engineers
Construction: Clark Martinez
Status: Completed in 2016