10 Mysteries Of The Gold Rush!

10 Mysteries Of The Gold Rush!


From it’s true origins to the massive amount
of gold found…stay tuned to number 1 to find out 10 facts YOU need to know about the
Gold Rush! Number 10: Didn’t Start In 1849. Despite a lot of folks saying that the Gold
Rush started in California in 1849, that wasn’t truly the case. It’s the most popular year of the California
Gold Rush, there’s no doubt about that. But the event that helped start the whole
thing actually happened in 1848. Don’t be confused, I’ll explain. Like all good gold rushes, this one started
out by accident. A group of people were digging near the American
River in their attempt to build a saw mill. While they were digging up dirt to help make
way for it, they found a gold nugget. A nugget is a small compacted form of gold
that can be picked up. After finding this one, they searched the
nearby ground and river and found even more nuggets. This led to a massive telling of what happened
around the town they were in. Which, naturally, spread across the nation,
and that gave many people who were tired of living in the east the chance to head west,
make their fortunes, and live a better life. By the time most got there, it was 1849, but
the initial gold rush technically started in 1848. But if you want to be even MORE technical,
it REALLY started in 1884, when a shopkeeper in San Francisco got a bottle full of gold
dust and put it in his shop for all to see. And that kicked off the series of events that
would lead to the eventually Gold Rush In California. Number 9: Not The First Gold Rush In The US. As I noted, the California Gold Rush is one
that is very popular in the history and lore of the United States. It inspired the NFL team the San Francisco
49ers, and even made a villain of the legends of the Gold Rush in an episode of “Scooby-Doo.” But what people forget, at times, is that
this WASN’T the first gold rush in the United States. That gold rush happened 50 years earlier. This earlier event happened in Cabarrus County,
North Carolina, when a 17-pound gold nugget was found in the ground in the country. For the record, at the current gold price,
of about $1,300 an ounce, that would be over $22,000 dollars worth of gold, and that was
just one nugget! So just like the eventual California Gold
Rush, a large group of fortune seekers went migrated to North Carolina to search for their
own share of the gold. And, eventually, around 30,000 people were
out digging for it. And they had a LOT of success. So much so that for the next 30 years, all
the gold coins that were produced by the government were being made mostly by the gold that came
from North Carolina. Just goes to show you that gold can be just
about anywhere, and a gold rush can follow it if it’s found. Number 8: Biggest Migration In US History. Before we get into the migration, take a moment
to like this video and join the Zero2Hero community by using the buttons below! Let’s talk about the early days of the United
States, ok? At first, there were 13 colonies, and after
the Revolutionary War, the colonies won their independence. Soon enough, the Louisiana Purchase was made,
and thus expanded the US greatly, allowing more and more people to both live in the land
and live comfortably. But we still weren’t populating much of the,
then current, United States yet. While there were plenty on the western side
of the US, it wasn’t a tamed land like it is now. Rather, it was a lot of wilderness, and a
lot of unknowns. It would take a LOT of encouragement to get
people to move west and try to settle it. Say…like a gold rush? It’s a fact that a LOT of people went to California
and surrounding areas over the course of the Gold Rush migration. But the migration was also the biggest in
United States history! In March of 1848, the most predominant people
in the soon-to-be state of California were Native Americans. Only about 800 settlers from the east were
there. Fast forward 20 months and suddenly there
were 100,000 non-native people in the state! Fast forward to 1850, and 300,000 people had
showed up. And all of this helped lead to California
becoming the 31st state in the country. Number 7: Americans Weren’t The Only Ones
Digging For Gold. Another thing you have to remember about the
world at that time was that communication most definitely wasn’t the best around. At the time, the railroads weren’t built,
and so getting a message out from East to West was a hazardous adventure. To that end, some of the first people to take
advantage of the Gold Rush fever weren’t the settlers in the East, but were, instead, people
from Asia and South America. 25,000 Chinese Immigrants, for example, were
in California by 1852. And, unfortunately, this led to a lot of incidents
that created a sad foreshadowing of how things were to be in the United States. You see, the Gold Rush couldn’t last forever,
and so when the gold was visibly becoming less and less abundant, people started to
fight over the “rights to mine”, despite it being a free country. And when they saw the amount of Chinese workers
trying to get what they considered to be “their gold,” they went rather evil. First, they put a tax on the “foreign miners”
and demanded they pay a royalty for all the gold they got. And even though this was repealed, it was
instituted with a worse law later on. And when that wasn’t enough, many American
miners would beat or even kill the immigrant workers, whether they be Chinese, Mexican,
or Native American. Gold is a precious commodity and, as such,
it can bring out the worst in people. Number 6: The Birth Of The Oregon Trail. Have you ever played the game Oregon Trail? The one about you being the leader of a group
of settlers trying to make it out west? Well the true beginning of that game actually
came via the Gold Rush. Because, for those who couldn’t afford quicker
travel to the West, the best way to go was through a path that wagons could go on. There were actually two different trails,
based upon your preferred destination…The California Trail, and the Oregon Trail. Just in the summer of 1849, about 30,000 people
took to these trails to try and get to the west and find their better life. But it was not an easy journey, as the game
would tell you. The trek was about six months long. Think about that for a bit. Six months of being in a wagon most of the
time, just traveling. Yet, a lot of people did it, and a lot of
people made it, and the infamy of the Oregon Trail lives on to this day. Number 5: Valley Of Death. Not everyone had to go 6 months to try and
get to the gold rich fields of California, some actually only had to travel a short distance. But as all of you likely know, it’s what’s
IN that distance that can define whether you succeed or not. And in this case, for 13 prospectors, they
decided to go across a small patch of desert. While this isn’t a bad idea, per se, this
particular stretch of desert is now known as Death Valley, and can you guess how it
got that name? That’s right, when these 13 souls tried to
cross this brutally hot desert, but they all passed away. When people found out about it, they decided
to name it quite fittingly, Death Valley. And the legend of Death Valley has lived on
to this day. Number 4: Invest In The Bank. If you look at how modern gold rushes are
done, there are processes, procedures, and most importantly, official exchanges that
are there to make sure that everything is done in an orderly fashion. And of course, to make sure everyone is taken
care of. In the California Gold Rush…that wasn’t
an option at first. Especially when it came to exchanging currency. There were no banks in California when the
Gold Rush began, and this was a big problem. Because that meant that only certain private
individuals could go and make the currency exchange, and NOT be regulated by the government
when they did so. Can you see the problem in that? Exactly…just about everyone got swindled,
and it’s one of the worst kept secrets about the Gold Rush. While many did make it rich, just about everyone
got LESS than they should have. Eventually, in 1854, a government mint was
set up, which ended the private banking. But by that time, millions upon millions of
dollars weren’t given to their rightful owners. Number 3: 100 Million Ounces. While gold mining is still popular to this
day (more on that in a bit), California remains the biggest producer of gold in the history
of the United States. From the start of the Gold Rush in 1848 to
1965, an estimated 105 million ounces of gold were found in the various mines and areas
of California. That’s an incredible sum, and one that people
worked hard to get for many years. Gold mining still goes on in California, but
not anywhere close to what they were doing in the original Gold Rush. The three states that are now producing the
most gold in the United States is Nevada, Alaska, and Colorado. Number 2: The Cost Of Doing Business. Another lesser known fact about the California
Gold Rush is that most who tried to go and get gold…didn’t. And not because they couldn’t dig it up, but
rather, they couldn’t afford to go mining. Most of the people who went West in search
of gold were those who had very little to their name. So by the time they made the six month trek
to California, they only had so much money on them. They then had to buy tools, supplies, and
of course, basic living essentials for them and their families, and that wasn’t cheap. In fact, if you look at the money made during
the Gold Rush, it actually pales in comparison to the money made by merchants at times selling
things to the miners. Some great innovations were made because of
the Gold Rush, and that made many merchants, not miners, a lot of money. And by that token, a lot of miners went broke
before they could even go and dig for an ounce of gold. I think Mark Twain said it best when he said,
“during the gold rush its a good time to be in the pick and shovel business!” Number 1: The Spirit Of The Gold Rush Lives
On. Despite the California Gold Rush being long
gone, the spirit of the Gold Rush still lives to this day. Men and women are fighting for their own cut
of the gold that they know is still out there. To that end, the Discovery Channel has one
of the most popular shows on cable in the form of Gold Rush, which started out with
a man named Todd Hoffman leading a group of men from Oregon to Alaska in search of millions
in gold. The show is now in its 9th season, and continues
to draw in viewers, and prove that if there’s gold in the ground, there’s always going to
be people wanting to go get it. How do you think the Gold Rush shaped America? Let us know in the comments below and…take
care!

7 Comments

  1. Gold…It's value goes back forever. So does the alchemy of it. Lead to gold still carries on. I never knew it but gold is actually being made by science at the edge of volcanoes. I think it was around 2014/15 Taupo volcano in New Zealand was eyed as the next big 'gold strike' area. Fresh water met volcanic fire and gold was for the taking, alchemy at it's finest. All the little scientists in all their little heat suits, found it to be so, and now they are insane with volcanic gold fevers around the planet. Makes me wonder if all the volcanoes going off don't have some sort of advantage for them? So…if you want to find gold, look to heavy old volcanic river flows, scars, it's under there. But now, why dig when you can just collect fire from inside and add some fresh water? Was done right on camera! Funny, they can figure that out, but still can't figure out how to feed a hungry world. Priorities aye?
    Thanks! Always interesting stuff here, love it! Have a great week!

  2. You might want to recheck your math on the 17 Lbs. nugget, it comes out to about $ 354,000. Cheers and thank you for your video, Billy in Canada

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*