Alaska Gold Rush History & Genealogy

A gold rush town. Was a stop along the original 1900's Iditarod trail. Named after William Dikeman, who along with John Beaton had penetrated the virgin territory and uncovered paydirt in the area that soon would become the Iditarod Mining District (Source).

Sourdoughs John Beaton and William Dikeman poked around Fairbanks and Nome with limited success. Then they bought a stern wheeler and headed up the Innoko River. According to information supplied by Beaton's heirs, they were searching for a place deep enough to tie up for the winter.
Dikeman steered, and Beaton felt for the bottom with a measuring rod until he could plunge in the full length of the stick and blurted out "I did a rod!" in his Nova Scotia-Scots accent.

Parking the boat, they built a cabin on skids that they could drag from prospect to prospect. After sinking 27 holes, they dug into the widest gold streak in Alaska, on Christmas Day 1908.

The Iditarod strike led to America's last great gold stampede. Some 5,000 men worked the area and took out 1.3 million ounces of gold. Production dropped quickly, however, and Iditarod soon went from boom town to ghost town, though some production continues in the vicinity even today.


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