Williams had borrowed a revolver and ran
to the scene to provide help. Williams was struck in the breast at
point blank just as he fired a shot, which struck the ceiling behind
him. Covington then ran back up Main Street with two revolvers drawing
on the crowd following him.
Henry Lehman confiscated a Winchester and
hopped on Sherman Harvey's wagon in pursuit of Covington. Covington
was blazing away on Nevada Street when Lehman aimed and fired as he
leapt from the wagon, striking Covington. A mob gathered around
shouting, "hang him", but he died before a doctor could arrive.
Marshall Kelleher recovered from his wound. Dick Williams died several
days later. His funeral was the largest in the county requiring his
service to be held at the Opera House.
In the early 1900s, gold production again
declined as the mines were getting so deep that it had become too
expensive. Secondly, inflation during World War I caused the
price of other commodities to rise while the value of gold stayed
constant at about $20.00 per ounce. By 1920, the value of gold
had changed to at least a 10 to 1 ratio in favor of other commodities.
As a result, most mines in the area suspended operations, and many
businesses closed. This caused the population of
City to drop from 3,114 in 1900 to 553 in 1920.
During this time, many
frame houses in
Black Hawk and Nevadaville were torn down and the lumber taken to other
parts of the state for construction of new residences. Many other
houses were abandoned to the elements, tax roles, and vandals.
Lamenting this condition,
the following appeared in The Weekly Register-Call on May 31, 1918: "Iron junk is passing through this city everyday for the railroad yards in
Black Hawk, where the stuff is shipped to Denver. The same can be said of
lumber from old houses which have been purchased by wrecking parties of
Golden and Denver, in this city and Nevadaville. Mr. Hawley's old house on
Nevada street, opposite the ball park is the latest building to be torn
down and there are many more in this city to follow."
During the 1930s, there
was some recovery in mining due to an increase in gold from $20 to $35 per
ounce and the cheap labor provided by out-of-work men after the