Just north of the town of Warren lies a mining operation known today as the “Fook Sing Mining Company Camp.” While Chinese miners were prohibited from purchasing land, they could buy claims or lease the rights to mining operations. This must have been the case here, where a Chinese mining company selected a strategic position — a promontory overlooking the Warren Creek drainage — with proximity to the placer gravels below. The site was probably occupied seasonally from about 1880-1910.
Archaeology work conducted in the Warren Mining District.
Highlights: Structures and artifacts from the site indicate it served as a seasonal mining camp where numbers of men worked, cooked, ate and slept. Canvas and repair tools recovered from the site are indicative of tents, a common feature of all mining camps. Also found was an outdoor chimney, next to a large building that served as a communal kitchen where many animal bones, food containers and utensils were discovered. A blacksmith shop served not so much for production as for repair. An earthen ditch provided the water supply.
Terraced gardens were used to grow vegetables to sustain the mining community. These traditional field systems were made of terraces and sophisticated irrigation systems, common landscape adaptations from the Chinese immigrants’ homelands in the mountainous Kwangtung province in China.
Information and exhibitions about local history are on display at the Chinese Cemetery and a Chinese homestead called Ah Toy’s Gardens, also in the area.