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To his Excellency GEORGE STONEMAN, Governor of California:
SIR: I have the honor herewith to submit the sixth annual report of the State Mineralogist, and report of progress of the California State Mining Bureau, for the year ending June 1, 1886, prepared in accordance with the Act of Legislature, approved April 16, 1880.
Permit me to express my thanks to you and to other State officials for courtesies extended to me, and for the interest you have taken in the State Mining Bureau.
I have the honor, sir, to remain very respectfully,
HENRY G. HANKS,
HISTORY OF THE STATE MINING BUREAU.
A very full history of the California State Mining Bureau, from its commencement in 1880 to the fifteenth of May, 1885, may be found in the five annual reports which precede this. The history includes a relation of the many difficulties met with in the establishment of the institution, which it will not be necessary to repeat here.
The Board of Trustees appointed by Governor Stoneman, in accordance with an Act of the Legislature (Assembly Bill No. 78, which passed the Assembly February 11, 1885, and the Senate March 5, 1885), organized April 18, 1885.
The following gentlemen constitute the Board: William Irelan, Jr., S. Heydenfeldt, Jr., J. Z. Davis, Walter E. Dean, and George Hearst. William Irelan, Jr., was elected Chairman, and S. Heydenfeldt, Jr., Secretary.
The Act providing for a Board of Trustees is published in full in the fifth annual report of this office.
Immediately on the return of the State Mineralogist from the New Orleans Exposition, preparation was made for removal to the fine fireproof building recently erected by the Society of California Pioneers. The building is situated on Fourth Street, near Market, on the property donated to that society by James Lick.
The removal, which was made during an unusually rainy season, was nevertheless finished without serious loss from breakage, and the entire time, up to the date of this report, has been employed in placing the museum in order.
The collection of seven thousand catalogued specimens, and many not yet entered, is arranged in cases, and classified into seven principal groups, as follows: MINERALS, ORES, ROCKS, FOSSILS, SHELLS, ETHNOLOGY, and SUNDRIES. The whole should now be rearranged into geographical divisions. This, by my calculation, would require the entire time of an industrious man for one year, as I have planned to do it. From this may be inferred the estimate I place on the magnitude and importance of the State Museum at the present time.
While the exhibition of the State minerals at New Orleans was worth far more than the cost necessitated by twice packing and thrice removing the specimens, it set back the work of the Mining Bureau for six months. The removal to the new building, and arrangement of the museum, occupied three months more. The specimens are now all in place, and I am pleased to state that no serious loss, or material injury from breakage, or otherwise, has been sustained.
PRESENT CONDITION OF THE STATE MINING BUREAU.
The condition of the institution is most satisfactory. The State is now in possession of a very extensive museum, which has cost but a trifle compared with its actual value.
It would have been impossible to make so large and varied a collection, even if many times the money expended had been at the disposal of the State Mineralogist, were it not that prospectors were willing to send to the State Mining Bureau many fine and interesting specimens in return for information extended to them. The State is greatly indebted to Wells, Fargo & Co., and the several steamship companies, for free transportation. The museum is one of which the people should be proud.
Mr. Joseph Wasson, to whom the State of California owes a just debt of gratitude, gave the future of the State Mining Bureau much thought, and nobly made the foundation broad and ample. But the institution has grown more rapidly than even he expected, and while it is at the present time in a healthy and prosperous condition, its future should be made the subject of careful legislation.
The institution has been carried through many difficulties, and has been placed in a safe and suitable building, and the financial management transferred to a Board of Trustees, who will care for it in the future. There is money enough to keep it alive until the meeting of the next Legislature. The museum is still growing, and will continue to do so. It is to be hoped that the next Legislature will make sufficient provision for its support.
From the experience I have made during a period of six years while holding the office of State Mineralogist, it is my opinion that the State Museum should be entirely separated from the office of State Mineralogist, and all the responsibility of that department removed from him. He should be provided with the necessary assistants and money (which need not be a large sum). The money for the support of his office, which is really the most important branch of the State Mining Bureau, should be entirely under his control, and he should be allowed to manage his department according to his own judgment, without interference from the Board of Trustees, he bearing the responsibility.
Many valuable specimens have been presented to the museum during the past year, and I regret that, owing to reasons mentioned elsewhere, it has been impossible to present in this report a full list of the names of those who have thus enriched the State Museum by their generous donations. I take this occasion to acknowledge, generally, the receipt of many valuable gifts which have been placed in the museum cases when it has been possible to do so. Others will be arranged and catalogued in due time.
This department has grown in proportion to the advance of the institution, and to that extent that it is now fully the work of one individual during business hours to care for it properly. I am sorry to say that the numerous letters received by the State Mining Bureau have not always been answered as promptly as they should have been-addressed as they were to an important institution in one of the most important States of the American Union. I can only offer as an excuse the utter impossibility of doing better, for reasons too often repeated in the reports of this office. The State Mining Bureau numbers among its correspondents scientific societies, State and foreign governments, and noted individuals, besides many citizens of the Pacific Coast, wishing information as to the natural resources of California. When it has been possible to do so, all procurable information has been given. The reputation of California as a mineral-producing State