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The California Gold Rush of 1849

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1 The California Gold Rush of 1849
Jack Cyphers The California Gold Rush of 1849

2 Sutter’s Mill In January of 1848, John Sutter, the owner of Sutter’s Mill, sent James Marshall to build a sawmill next to a nearby creek.

3 Sutter’s Mill Location

4 Eureka! “I reached my hand down and picked it up; it made my heart trump, for I was certain it was gold.” – James Marshall

5 Oro! Oro! Oro! After the discovery, Sutter and Marshall both agreed to keep the discovery a secret, but when they went to investigate the next day, they found a Spanish-speaking Native American holding a gold nugget shouting “Oro! Oro! Oro!”

6 Gold Nugget

7 Extra! Extra! News of the discovery of gold soon spread across the country like wild fire.

8 Forty-Niners A group of 80,000 gold-seekers, called forty-niner, traveled to California in hope of striking it rich. 80% of the 49ers were American.

9 Gold Fever “At that time the ‘gold fever’ was contagious, and few, old or young escaped the malady [sickness]”

10 Staking a Claim 49ers would prospect along banks of streams.
If they found gold, they would “stake a claim.” Disputes over claims often occurred.

11 Methods of Mining Most Popular Type: Placer Mining
Placer Mining: mining done along rivers and streams using pans, a rocker/cradle device, or a sluice box. This equipment was used to wash gold flakes and nuggets out of loose rock and gravel.

12 Gold Mining Equipment

13 Striking It Rich Yearly Gold Production: $60 million
One man 2 ½ lbs of gold after 15 min. of work Two black miners found a rich gold deposit. The location became known as Negro Hill in their honor.

14 The Unfortunate Most miners did not find gold.
They found dept and misery.

15 Mining Camps and Towns Gold mining towns and camps formed wherever there was a large group of people looking for gold who needed a place to stay. Examples of Camps: Skunk Gulch, Hangtown, Git-Up-and-Git, and Dry Diggings

16 Columbia Mining Town

17 Camps and Towns Mining camps and towns appeared and disappeared very quickly. Miners found themselves rich one day, and broke the next day.

18 Law and Order Little or no authority
Some miners tried to set up an informal system of law and order. Most of the time, these systems did not work.

19 People of the Camps Mostly young, married men,
About 5% of the miners were woman or children. The women did the cooking and cleaning.

20 The Chinese and the Gold Rush
The California Gold Rush brought a large number of Chinese to America. These Chinese were very poor back in China. They wanted to become rich.


22 The Chinese Part 2 The Chinese Miners Faced: Steep Taxes
Harsh Working Conditions Discrimination

23 The Chinese Part 3 Some Chinese contiued mining after they came to the U.S. Others decided to try something else such as farming, textiles/factories, and even cigar making.

24 Other Immigrants Other Immigrants included: Europeans Mexicans
South Americans

25 Review Video

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