The New International Encyclopædia/Klondike
KLON'DIKE. A region in the Canadian Territory of Yukon, comprising an area about equal to that of Rhode Island, and lying chietly to the east of the Yukon River, where it receives the Klondike Creek, near the middle of the Alaskan boundary line (Map: Northwest Territory, B 2). It was in this district, on Bonanza Creek, a tributary of the Klondike, that a prospecting miner, G. W. Cormack, discovered indications of rich gold deposits, August 16, 1896. The following year saw an almost unprecedented rush of gold-miners from Europe and America, and the Klondike was converted from a barren waste to a populous and lively mining district, in the midst of which the city of Dawson (q.v.) sprang up. The region will depend for its future prosperity entirely on the continuance of its mineral resources, having no agricultural value. The climate is exceedingly severe — very hot and humid in the short summer, and extremely cold during the long winter. Facilities for communication with the coast were at first very poor, but in 1898-99 a railroad line was projected from Skagway to White Horse Rapids on the headwaters of the Yukon, and is now in operation. See Alaska; Yukon Gold-Fields.