Cornish Beach (also known as Cornishman's Beach)
Location #409 - Cornish Beach
Group Number 1

Group Members

The table below shows the people that make up the group.

No Last Name First Names Maiden Name Relationship Occupation Born Died School Year


The table below shows any historical notes about the party group.

Note Date Short Description Note Text
3362 various General notes.

Located on the true right bank of the Kawarau River, approximately half way between Pipeclay and Long Gully Creeks. Cornish Beach appears to have been named from the fact that the original miners were a party of Cornishmen who worked the beach in 1865. The work was carried out when the river was very low. Their method of working was to wing dam the river in sections with piles of sand bags which enabled them to clean up a paddock of about 60-80 feet of the river in a length. Once the wing dam was in place, the water level was lowered using 4 large Caolifornian pumps which were constructed by William Grant, a Cromwell carpenter. Each pump required teams of 6 to 8 men per pump to work the crank handles. The work was so strenuous that they could only work in half hour shifts. Each man was paid £1 per day and a good supply of rum. The daily expenses were £100. Once the paddock was dewatered, a team of miners shoveled the 'Stuff" (gravel and sand) into wheelbarrows and carted it up the bank to be stockpiled and cradled. These miners with wheelbarrows were also paid £1 per day. The operation went on 24 hours a day for a period of 47 days. It was reputed that the yield of gold was 140oz (4.36kg) per paddock. In July the owners of a spoon dredge, Franz David Siedenburg, William Grant and James Stuart were not getting good returns from their dredge. They approached the Cornish miners with a proposal to work the area jointly. As a result the dredge was used to raise the "Stuff" and a party of 8-10 miners wheeled it ashore to be cradled. This work also continued for 24 hours per day. On 4 Sept, a flood came down the river and swamped the area, putting an end to the operations. During the period of operation, the dredge returned 103oz (3.2kg) of gold. The dredge then moved downstream and into the Clutha River, but could not repeat this return. These notes were recorded from : William Watson in 1899, who had been sluicing around the Cromwell area in the 1860's. Daily Times Co, booklet on dredging 1899. Joseph Berryman, Bannockburn miner, as told to J P Parcell.


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