It also provides an interesting insight into our passion for owning gold.
The Forty-Niners are among the most well known of all those who traveled West during the California gold rush. This group of adventures went west to seek their fortunes in gold, and forged a trail that many thousands of people later followed in the search for riches.
Gold was discovered in Coloma, California at Sutters Mill in the year 1848. This discovery led to a massive movement of people into the West.
Many of the people who journeyed to the west underestimated the hardships they would encounter along the way, and didn’t make it to California. There were, however, many thousands who survived the journey.
While the sudden influx of people into the west did have negative effects, there were also some positive benefits of the settling of the new lands. San Francisco quickly turned from a small trading town to a large city.
Within two short years, from 1848 to the year 1850, nearly all of the easily accessible gold had been collected and the population was growing into one that focused on agriculture.
The settlers who reached California during 1848 often collected several thousand dollars worth of gold each day, a number that quickly went down as more and more people settled into the area.
Miners in search of their fortunes often handled their claims to mines in violent ways, ensuring they had access to the best mines in the area without the need to buy or trade any other claims that they may have.
By 1870, federal laws were established to help control the lawlessness in the west.
For us, of course, buying gold today is a little less exciting, and a lot less dangerous. But the pleasure of owning gold remains the same.