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Gold rush

Gold rush

Overview

A gold rush is a period of feverish migration of workers to an area that has had a dramatic discovery of gold. Major gold rushes took place in the 19th century in Australia, Brazil, Canada, South Africa, and the United States, while smaller gold rushes took place elsewhere.

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, there were several major gold rushes. The permanent wealth that resulted was distributed widely because of reduced migration costs and low barriers to entry.
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Encyclopedia

A gold rush is a period of feverish migration of workers to an area that has had a dramatic discovery of gold. Major gold rushes took place in the 19th century in Australia, Brazil, Canada, South Africa, and the United States, while smaller gold rushes took place elsewhere.

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, there were several major gold rushes. The permanent wealth that resulted was distributed widely because of reduced migration costs and low barriers to entry. While gold mining itself was unprofitable for most diggers and mine owners, some people made large fortunes, and the merchants and transportation facilities made large profits. The resulting increase in the world's gold supply stimulated global trade and investment. Historians have written extensively about the migration, trade, colonization, and environmental history associated with gold rushes.

Gold rushes were typically marked by a general buoyant feeling of a "free for all" in income mobility, in which any single individual might become abundantly wealthy almost instantly, as expressed in the California Dream
California Dream
California Dream is the psychological motivation to gain fast wealth or fame in a new land. As a result of the California Gold Rush after 1849, California's name became indelibly connected with the Gold Rush, and fast success in a new world became known as the "California Dream." California was...

.

Gold rushes helped spur a huge immigration that often led to permanent settlement of new regions and define a significant part of the culture of the Australian and North American frontier
Frontier
A frontier is a political and geographical term referring to areas near or beyond a boundary. 'Frontier' was absorbed into English from French in the 15th century, with the meaning "borderland"--the region of a country that fronts on another country .The use of "frontier" to mean "a region at the...

s. As well, at a time when the world's money supply was based on gold
Gold standard
The gold standard is a monetary system in which the standard economic unit of account is a fixed mass of gold. There are distinct kinds of gold standard...

, the newly-mined gold provided economic stimulus far beyond the gold fields.

Gold rushes presumably extend back as far as gold mining
Gold mining
Gold mining is the removal of gold from the ground. There are several techniques and processes by which gold may be extracted from the earth.-History:...

, to the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

, whose gold mining was described by Diodorus Siculus
Diodorus Siculus
Diodorus Siculus was a Greek historian who flourished between 60 and 30 BC. According to Diodorus' own work, he was born at Agyrium in Sicily . With one exception, antiquity affords no further information about Diodorus' life and doings beyond what is to be found in his own work, Bibliotheca...

 and Pliny the Elder
Pliny the Elder
Gaius Plinius Secundus , better known as Pliny the Elder, was a Roman author, naturalist, and natural philosopher, as well as naval and army commander of the early Roman Empire, and personal friend of the emperor Vespasian...

, and probably further back to Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt was an ancient civilization of Northeastern Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in what is now the modern country of Egypt. Egyptian civilization coalesced around 3150 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under the first pharaoh...

.

Life cycle of a gold rush





Within each mining rush there is typically a transition through progressively higher capital expenditures, larger organizations, and more specialized knowledge. They may also progress from high-unit value to lower unit value minerals (from gold to silver to base metals).

The rush is started by a discovery of placer gold made by an individual. At first the gold may be washed from the sand and gravel by individual miners with little training, using a gold pan or similar simple instrument. Once it is clear that the volume of gold-bearing sediment is larger than a few cubic metres, the placer miners will build rockers or sluice boxes, with which a small group can wash gold from the sediment many times faster than using gold pans. (See placer mining
Placer mining
Placer mining is the mining of alluvial deposits for minerals. This may be done by open-pit or by various surface excavating equipment or tunneling equipment....

 for details.)
Winning the gold in this manner requires almost no capital investment, only a simple pan or equipment that may be built on the spot, and only simple organization. The low investment, the high value per unit weight of gold, and the ability of gold dust and gold nuggets to serve as a medium of exchange, allow placer gold rushes to occur even in remote locations.

After the sluice-box stage, placer mining may become increasingly large scale, requiring larger organizations, and higher capital expenditures. Small claims owned and mined by individuals may need to be merged into larger tracts. Difficult-to-reach placer deposits may be mined by tunnels. Water may be diverted by dams and canals to placer mine active river beds or to deliver water needed to wash dry placers. The more advanced techniques of ground sluicing, hydraulic mining
Hydraulic mining
Hydraulic mining, or hydraulicking, is a form of mining that uses high-pressure jets of water to dislodge rock material or move sediment. In the placer mining of gold or tin, the resulting water-sediment slurry is directed through sluice boxes to remove the gold.-Precursor - ground...

, and dredging
Gold dredge
A gold dredge is a placer mining machine that extracts gold from sand, gravel, and dirt using water and mechanical methods.The original gold dredges were large, multi-story machines built in the first half of the 1900s....

 may be used.

Typically the heyday of a placer gold rush would last only a few years. The free gold supply in stream beds would become depleted somewhat quickly, and the initial phase would be followed by prospecting for veins of lode
Lode
In geology, a lode is a deposit of metalliferous ore that fills or is embedded in a fissure in a rock formation or a vein of ore that is deposited or embedded between layers of rock....

 gold that were the original source of the placer gold. Hard rock mining, like placer mining, may evolve from low capital investment and simple technology to progressively higher capital and technology. The surface outcrop of a gold-bearing vein may be oxidized, so that the gold occurs as native gold, and the ore needs only to be crushed and washed (free milling ore). The first miners may at first build a simple arrastra to crush their ore; later, they may build stamp mills to crush ore more quickly. As the miners dig down, they may find that the deeper part of vein contains gold locked in sulfide
Sulfur
Sulfur or sulphur is the chemical element with atomic number 16. In the periodic table it is represented by the symbol S. It is an abundant, multivalent non-metal. Under normal conditions, sulfur atoms form cyclic octatomic molecules with chemical formula S8. Elemental sulfur is a bright yellow...

 or telluride minerals, which will require smelting
Smelting
Smelting is a form of extractive metallurgy; its main use is to produce a metal from its ore. This includes iron extraction from iron ore, and copper extraction and other base metals from their ores...

. If the ore is still sufficiently rich, it may be worth shipping to a distant smelter (direct shipping ore). Lower-grade ore may require on-site treatment to either recover the gold or to produce a concentrate sufficiently rich for transport to the smelter. As the district turns to lower-grade ore, the mining may change from underground mining to large open-pit mining.

Many silver rush
Silver rush
A Silver rush is the silver-mining equivalent of a gold rush.Notable silver rushes have taken place in Mexico, Argentina, the United States , and Canada...

es followed upon gold rushes. As transportation and infrastructure improve, the focus may change progressively from gold to silver to base metals. In this way, Leadville, Colorado
Leadville, Colorado
Leadville is a Statutory City that is the county seat of, and the only municipality in, Lake County, Colorado, United States. Situated at an elevation of , Leadville is the highest incorporated city and the second highest incorporated municipality in the United States...

 started as a placer gold discovery, achieved fame as a silver-mining district, then relied on lead and zinc in its later days. Butte, Montana
Butte, Montana
Butte is a city in Montana and the county seat of Silver Bow County, United States. In 1977, the city and county governments consolidated to form the sole entity of Butte-Silver Bow. As of the 2010 census, Butte's population was 34,200...

 began mining placer gold, then became a silver-mining district, then became for a time the world’s largest copper producer.

Australian gold rushes


Various gold rushes occurred in Australia over the second half of the 19th century. The most significant of these, although not the only ones, were the Victorian gold rush
Victorian gold rush
The Victorian gold rush was a period in the history of Victoria, Australia approximately between 1851 and the late 1860s. In 10 years the Australian population nearly tripled.- Overview :During this era Victoria dominated the world's gold output...

 in 1851, and the Western Australian gold rush
Western Australian gold rush
In the latter part of the nineteenth century, discoveries of gold at a number of locations in Western Australia caused large influxes of prospectors from overseas and interstate, and classic gold rushes. Significant finds included:...

 of the 1890s. Both were highly significant to their respective states' political and economic development as they brought a large number of immigrants to the states, and promoted massive government spending on infrastructure to support the new arrivals who came looking for gold. While some found their fortune, those who did not often remained in the colonies and took advantage of extremely liberal land laws to take up farming.

Gold rushes happened at or around:

North America



The first significant gold rush in the United States was in Cabarrus County, North Carolina
Cabarrus County, North Carolina
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 131,063 people, 49,519 households, and 36,545 families residing in the county. The population density was 360 people per square mile . There were 52,848 housing units at an average density of 145 per square mile...

 (east of Charlotte), in 1799 at today's Reed's Gold Mine. Thirty years later, in 1829, the Georgia Gold Rush
Georgia Gold Rush
The Georgia Gold Rush was the second significant gold rush in the United States. It started in 1828 in the present day Lumpkin County near county seat Dahlonega, and soon spread through the North Georgia mountains, following the Georgia Gold Belt. By the early 1840s, gold became harder to find...

 in the southern Appalachians
Appalachian Mountains
The Appalachian Mountains #Whether the stressed vowel is or ,#Whether the "ch" is pronounced as a fricative or an affricate , and#Whether the final vowel is the monophthong or the diphthong .), often called the Appalachians, are a system of mountains in eastern North America. The Appalachians...

 occurred. It was followed by the California Gold Rush
California Gold Rush
The California Gold Rush began on January 24, 1848, when gold was found by James W. Marshall at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California. The first to hear confirmed information of the gold rush were the people in Oregon, the Sandwich Islands , and Latin America, who were the first to start flocking to...

 of 1848–52 in the Sierra Nevada, which captured the popular imagination. The California gold rush led directly to the settlement of California by Americans
History of California
The history of California can be divided into several periods: the Native American period; European exploration period from 1542 to 1769; the Spanish colonial period, 1769 to 1821; the Mexican period, 1821 to 1848; and United States statehood, which continues to the present day...

 and the rapid entry of that state into the union in 1850. The gold rush in 1849 stimulated worldwide interest in prospecting for gold, and led to new rushes in Australia, South Africa, Wales and Scotland.
Successive gold rushes occurred in western North America, moving north and east from California: Fraser Canyon
Fraser Canyon
The Fraser Canyon is an 84 km landform of the Fraser River where it descends rapidly through narrow rock gorges in the Coast Mountains en route from the Interior Plateau of British Columbia to the Fraser Valley...

, the Cariboo
Cariboo
The Cariboo is an intermontane region of British Columbia along a plateau stretching from the Fraser Canyon to the Cariboo Mountains. The name is a reference to the woodland caribou that were once abundant in the region...

 district and other parts of British Columbia, and the Rocky Mountains
Rocky Mountains
The Rocky Mountains are a major mountain range in western North America. The Rocky Mountains stretch more than from the northernmost part of British Columbia, in western Canada, to New Mexico, in the southwestern United States...

. Resurrection Creek, near Hope, Alaska
Hope, Alaska
Hope is a census-designated place in Kenai Peninsula Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. As of the 2000 census the population was 137.-Geography:Hope is located at...

 was the site of Alaska's first gold rush more than a century ago, and placer mining
Placer mining
Placer mining is the mining of alluvial deposits for minerals. This may be done by open-pit or by various surface excavating equipment or tunneling equipment....

 continues today. Other notable Alaska Gold Rushes were Nome
Nome Gold Rush
-Beach:Claim jumping was mostly a problem before the beach gold was found, since it could not be claimed and there was plenty of it. As a matter of fact, the beach gold seems to have been more important than the claimed gold in the creeks. The mining of Nome beach is a good example of gold rushes...

 and the Fortymile River
Fortymile River
The Fortymile River is a river in Alaska and the Yukon. Prior to the Klondike Gold Rush, there was considerable mining activity along this tributary of the Yukon River. In the 1970s, there was an asbestos mine at Clinton Creek in the Yukon. When gold was discovered on the Fortymille River in 1886,...

.


Klondike



One of the last "great gold rushes" was the Klondike Gold Rush
Klondike Gold Rush
The Klondike Gold Rush, also called the Yukon Gold Rush, the Alaska Gold Rush and the Last Great Gold Rush, was an attempt by an estimated 100,000 people to travel to the Klondike region the Yukon in north-western Canada between 1897 and 1899 in the hope of successfully prospecting for gold...

 in Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

's Yukon Territory
Yukon
Yukon is the westernmost and smallest of Canada's three federal territories. It was named after the Yukon River. The word Yukon means "Great River" in Gwich’in....

 (1896–99), immortalized in the novels of Jack London
Jack London
John Griffith "Jack" London was an American author, journalist, and social activist. He was a pioneer in the then-burgeoning world of commercial magazine fiction and was one of the first fiction writers to obtain worldwide celebrity and a large fortune from his fiction alone...

, the poetry of Robert W. Service
Robert W. Service
Robert William Service was a poet and writer who has often been called "the Bard of the Yukon".Service is best known for his poems "The Shooting of Dan McGrew" and "The Cremation of Sam McGee", from his first book, Songs of a Sourdough...

 and Charlie Chaplin
Charlie Chaplin
Sir Charles Spencer "Charlie" Chaplin, KBE was an English comic actor, film director and composer best known for his work during the silent film era. He became the most famous film star in the world before the end of World War I...

's film The Gold Rush
The Gold Rush
The Gold Rush is a 1925 silent film comedy written, produced, directed by, and starring Charlie Chaplin in his Little Tramp role. The film also stars Georgia Hale, Mack Swain, Tom Murray, Henry Bergman, Malcolm Waite....

. The main goldfield was along the south flank of the Klondike River
Klondike River
The Klondike River is a tributary of the Yukon River in Canada that gave its name to the Klondike Gold Rush. The Klondike River has its source in the Ogilvie Mountains and flows into the Yukon River at Dawson City....

 near its confluence with the Yukon River
Yukon River
The Yukon River is a major watercourse of northwestern North America. The source of the river is located in British Columbia, Canada. The next portion lies in, and gives its name to Yukon Territory. The lower half of the river lies in the U.S. state of Alaska. The river is long and empties into...

 near what was to become Dawson City in Canada's Yukon Territory but it also helped open up the relatively new US possession of Alaska to exploration and settlement and promoted the discovery of other gold finds.

South Africa


In South Africa, the Witwatersrand Gold Rush
Witwatersrand Gold Rush
The Witwatersrand Gold Rush was a gold rush in 1886 that led to the establishment of Johannesburg, South Africa. It was part of the Mineral Revolution....

 in the Transvaal
South African Republic
The South African Republic , often informally known as the Transvaal Republic, was an independent Boer-ruled country in Southern Africa during the second half of the 19th century. Not to be confused with the present-day Republic of South Africa, it occupied the area later known as the South African...

 was important to that country's history, leading to the founding of Johannesburg
Johannesburg
Johannesburg also known as Jozi, Jo'burg or Egoli, is the largest city in South Africa, by population. Johannesburg is the provincial capital of Gauteng, the wealthiest province in South Africa, having the largest economy of any metropolitan region in Sub-Saharan Africa...

 and tensions between the Boer
Boer
Boer is the Dutch and Afrikaans word for farmer, which came to denote the descendants of the Dutch-speaking settlers of the eastern Cape frontier in Southern Africa during the 18th century, as well as those who left the Cape Colony during the 19th century to settle in the Orange Free State,...

s and British settlers.

South African gold production went from zero in 1886 to 23% of the total world output in 1896. At the time of the South African rush, gold production benefited from the newly discovered techniques by Scottish chemists, the MacArthur-Forrest process
Gold cyanidation
Gold cyanidation is a metallurgical technique for extracting gold from low-grade ore by converting the gold to a water soluble coordination complex. It is the most commonly used process for gold extraction...

, of using potassium cyanide
Potassium cyanide
Potassium cyanide is an inorganic compound with the formula KCN. This colorless crystalline compound, similar in appearance to sugar, is highly soluble in water. Most KCN is used in gold mining, organic synthesis, and electroplating. Smaller applications include jewelry for chemical gilding and...

 to extract gold from low-grade ore.

Mining industry today


There are about 10 to 30 million small-scale miners around the world, according to Communities and Small-Scale Mining (CASM). Approximately 100 million people are directly or indirectly dependent on small-scale mining. For example, there are 800,000 to 1.5 million artisanal miners in Democratic Republic of Congo, 350,000 to 650,000 in Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone , officially the Republic of Sierra Leone, is a country in West Africa. It is bordered by Guinea to the north and east, Liberia to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west and southwest. Sierra Leone covers a total area of and has an estimated population between 5.4 and 6.4...

, and 150,000 to 250,000 in Ghana
Ghana
Ghana , officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country located in West Africa. It is bordered by Côte d'Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, Togo to the east, and the Gulf of Guinea to the south...

, with millions more across Africa.

Rushes of the 1800s

  • Carolina Gold Rush
    Carolina Gold Rush
    The Carolina Gold Rush, the first gold rush in the United States, followed discovery of gold in North Carolina in 1799. It was not until a few years later that word of the gold spread and men started coming to North Carolina from other states. This gold rush coincided with the Georgia Gold Rush...

    , Cabarrus County, North Carolina, US (1799)

Rushes of the 1850s

  • Queen Charlottes Gold Rush
    Queen Charlottes Gold Rush
    The Queen Charlottes Gold Rush was a gold rush in the southern Queen Charlotte Islands of what is now the North Coast of British Columbia, Canada, in 1851....

    , British Columbia
    British Columbia
    British Columbia is the westernmost of Canada's provinces and is known for its natural beauty, as reflected in its Latin motto, Splendor sine occasu . Its name was chosen by Queen Victoria in 1858...

    , Canada (1850); the first of many British Columbia gold rushes
    British Columbia Gold Rushes
    The presence of gold in the region that is now British Columbia is mentioned in old legends that, in part, led to its discovery. The Strait of Anian, claimed to have been sailed by Juan de Fuca for whom today's Strait of Juan de Fuca is named, was described as passing through a land "rich in gold,...

  • Victorian Gold Rush
    Victorian gold rush
    The Victorian gold rush was a period in the history of Victoria, Australia approximately between 1851 and the late 1860s. In 10 years the Australian population nearly tripled.- Overview :During this era Victoria dominated the world's gold output...

    , Victoria
    Victoria (Australia)
    Victoria is the second most populous state in Australia. Geographically the smallest mainland state, Victoria is bordered by New South Wales, South Australia, and Tasmania on Boundary Islet to the north, west and south respectively....

    , Australia
  • Fraser Canyon Gold Rush
    Fraser Canyon Gold Rush
    The Fraser Canyon Gold Rush, began in 1858 after gold was discovered on the Thompson River in British Columbia at its confluence with the Nicoamen River. This was a few miles upstream from the Thompson's confluence with the Fraser River at present-day Lytton...

    , British Columbia (1858–1861)
  • Rock Creek Gold Rush
    Rock Creek Gold Rush
    The Rock Creek Gold Rush was a gold rush in the Boundary Country region of the Colony of British Columbia . The rush was touched off in 1859 when two US soldiers were driven across the border to escape pursuing Indians and chanced on gold only three miles into British territory, on the banks of...

    , British Columbia (1859–1860s)
  • Pikes Peak Gold Rush, Pikes Peak
    Pikes Peak
    Pikes Peak is a mountain in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, west of Colorado Springs, Colorado, in El Paso County in the United States of America....

    , Colorado (1859)
  • Northern Nevada Gold Rush (from 1850–1934)
  • Ballarat, Victoria
    Victoria (Australia)
    Victoria is the second most populous state in Australia. Geographically the smallest mainland state, Victoria is bordered by New South Wales, South Australia, and Tasmania on Boundary Islet to the north, west and south respectively....

    , Australia

Rushes of the 1860s

  • Idaho Gold Rush, also known as the Fort Colville
    Fort Colville
    The trade center Fort Colville was built by the Hudson's Bay Company at Kettle Falls on the Columbia River, a few miles west of the present site of Colville, Washington in 1825, to replace Spokane House as a regional trading center, as the latter was deemed to be too far from the Columbia River...

     Gold Rush, near Colville
    Colville, Washington
    Colville is a city in Stevens County, Washington, United States. The population was 4,673 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Stevens County.- History :...

    , Washington state (1860)
  • Central Otago Gold Rush
    Central Otago Gold Rush
    The Central Otago Gold Rush was a gold rush that occurred during the 1860s in Central Otago, New Zealand...

    , New Zealand (1861)
  • Cariboo Gold Rush
    Cariboo Gold Rush
    The Cariboo Gold Rush was a gold rush in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Although the first gold discovery was made in 1859 at Horsefly Creek, followed by more strikes at Keithley Creek and Antler Horns lake in 1860, the actual rush did not begin until 1861, when these discoveries were...

    , British Columbia (1862–65)
  • Stikine Gold Rush
    Stikine Gold Rush
    The Stikine Gold Rush was a minor but important gold rush in the Stikine Country of northwestern British Columbia, Canada. The rush's discoverer was Alexander "Buck" Choquette, who staked a claim at Choquette Bar in 1861, just downstream from the confluence of the Stikine and Anuk Rivers, at...

    , British Columbia (1863)
  • West Coast Gold Rush
    West Coast Gold Rush
    The West Coast Gold Rush on the West Coast of New Zealand from 1864 to 1867 populated the area, which up till then had been visited by few Europeans. Gold was found near the Taramakau River in 1864 by two Māori, Ihaia Tainui and Haimona Taukau...

    , South Island, New Zealand (1864–67)
  • Big Bend Gold Rush
    Big Bend Gold Rush
    The Big Bend Gold Rush was a gold rush on the upper Columbia River in the Colony of British Columbia in the mid-1860s....

    , British Columbia (1865—66)
  • Omineca Gold Rush
    Omineca Gold Rush
    The Omineca Gold Rush was a gold rush in British Columbia, Canada in the Omineca region of the Northern Interior of the province. Gold was first discovered there in 1861, but the rush didn't begin until late in 1869 with the discovery at Vital Creek....

    , British Columbia (1869)
  • Wild Horse Creek Gold Rush, British Columbia (1860s),
  • Black Hills Gold Rush
    Black Hills Gold Rush
    The Black Hills Gold Rush took place in Dakota Territory in the United States. It began in 1874 following the Custer Expedition and reached a peak in 1876-77.Rumors and poorly documented reports of gold in the Black Hills go back to the early 19th century...

    , Black Hills
    Black Hills
    The Black Hills are a small, isolated mountain range rising from the Great Plains of North America in western South Dakota and extending into Wyoming, USA. Set off from the main body of the Rocky Mountains, the region is something of a geological anomaly—accurately described as an "island of...

     of South Dakota
    South Dakota
    South Dakota is a state located in the Midwestern region of the United States. It is named after the Lakota and Dakota Sioux American Indian tribes. Once a part of Dakota Territory, South Dakota became a state on November 2, 1889. The state has an area of and an estimated population of just over...

     and Wyoming
    Wyoming
    Wyoming is a state in the mountain region of the Western United States. The western two thirds of the state is covered mostly with the mountain ranges and rangelands in the foothills of the Eastern Rocky Mountains, while the eastern third of the state is high elevation prairie known as the High...

     (1874–1878)
  • Eastern Oregon Gold Rush (1860s–1870s)
  • Kildonnan Gold Rush, Sutherland
    Sutherland
    Sutherland is a registration county, lieutenancy area and historic administrative county of Scotland. It is now within the Highland local government area. In Gaelic the area is referred to according to its traditional areas: Dùthaich 'IcAoidh , Asainte , and Cataibh...

    , Scotland (1869)

Rushes of the 1870s

  • Cassiar Gold Rush, British Columbia, 1871
  • Palmer River Gold Rush, Palmer River
    Palmer River
    The Palmer River is a river southwest of Cooktown in northeastern Australia. It was the site of a gold rush in the late 19th century which started in 1872. The Palmer River flows west across Cape York to the Gulf of Carpentaria, via the Mitchell River...

    , Queensland, Australia (1872)
  • Pilgrim's Rest, South Africa (1873)
  • Black Hills Gold Rush
    Black Hills Gold Rush
    The Black Hills Gold Rush took place in Dakota Territory in the United States. It began in 1874 following the Custer Expedition and reached a peak in 1876-77.Rumors and poorly documented reports of gold in the Black Hills go back to the early 19th century...

    , The Black Hills, South Dakota
    South Dakota
    South Dakota is a state located in the Midwestern region of the United States. It is named after the Lakota and Dakota Sioux American Indian tribes. Once a part of Dakota Territory, South Dakota became a state on November 2, 1889. The state has an area of and an estimated population of just over...

     (1874)
  • Bodie Gold Rush, Bodie
    Bodie, California
    Bodie is a ghost town in the Bodie Hills east of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in Mono County, California, United States, about 75 miles southeast of Lake Tahoe. It is located east-southeast of Bridgeport, at an elevation of 8379 feet . As Bodie Historic District, the U.S. Department of the...

    , California (1876)
  • Kumara Gold Rush, Kumara
    Kumara, New Zealand
    Kumara is a town on the West Coast of the South Island of New Zealand. It is located 30 kilometres south of Greymouth, close to the western end of State Highway 73, which leads across Arthur's Pass to Christchurch...

     and Dillmanstown, New Zealand (1876)
  • Hungen
    Hungen
    -Hungen:Hungen is a town in the district of Gießen, in Hesse, Germany. It is situated 20 km southeast of Gießen, and 18 km northeast of Friedberg. Surrounding towns are Laubach to the north, Nidda to the east, Wölfersheim to the south, and Münzenberg and Lich to the west.The history of Hungen...

    , Hessen, Germany (1877)

Rushes of the 1880s

  • Barberton
    Barberton, Mpumalanga
    Barberton is a town in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa, which has its origin in the 1880s gold rush in the region. It is situated in the De Kaap Valley and is fringed by the Mkhonjwa Mountains...

     Gold Rush, South Africa (1883)
  • Witwatersrand Gold Rush
    Witwatersrand Gold Rush
    The Witwatersrand Gold Rush was a gold rush in 1886 that led to the establishment of Johannesburg, South Africa. It was part of the Mineral Revolution....

    , Transvaal
    South African Republic
    The South African Republic , often informally known as the Transvaal Republic, was an independent Boer-ruled country in Southern Africa during the second half of the 19th century. Not to be confused with the present-day Republic of South Africa, it occupied the area later known as the South African...

    , South Africa (1886); discovery of the largest deposit
    Witwatersrand basin
    The Witwatersrand Basin is a geological formation in South Africa holding the world's largest known gold reserves and having produced over 1.5 billion ounces. The basin straddles the old provinces of Transvaal and the Orange Free State and is of the same period as the Vredefort impact of 2.023 Ga...

     of gold in the world. The resulting influx of miners was one of the triggers of the Second Boer War
    Second Boer War
    The Second Boer War was fought from 11 October 1899 until 31 May 1902 between the British Empire and the Afrikaans-speaking Dutch settlers of two independent Boer republics, the South African Republic and the Orange Free State...

    .
  • Cayoosh Gold Rush
    Cayoosh Gold Rush
    The Cayoosh Gold Rush was one of several in the history of the region surrounding Lillooet, British Columbia, Canada. If estimates of its yield are true, it would be one of the richest single finds in the gold mining history of that province....

     in Lillooet
    Lillooet, British Columbia
    Lillooet is a community on the Fraser River in western Canada, about up the British Columbia Railway line from Vancouver. Situated at an intersection of deep gorges in the lee of the Coast Mountains, it has a dry climate- of precipitation is recorded annually at the town's weather station,...

    , British Columbia (1884—87)
  • Tulameen Gold Rush near Princeton
    Princeton, British Columbia
    Princeton is a small town in the Similkameen region of southern British Columbia, Canada. It lies just east of the Cascade Mountains, which continue south into Washington, Oregon and California. The Tulameen and Similkameen Rivers converge here...

     British Columbia

Rushes of the 1890s

  • Tierra del Fuego Gold Rush, Tierra del Fuego
    Tierra del Fuego
    Tierra del Fuego is an archipelago off the southernmost tip of the South American mainland, across the Strait of Magellan. The archipelago consists of a main island Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego divided between Chile and Argentina with an area of , and a group of smaller islands including Cape...

    , southern Chile
    Chile
    Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

     and Argentina
    Argentina
    Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

  • Cripple Creek Gold Rush, Cripple Creek
    Cripple Creek, Colorado
    The City of Cripple Creek is a Statutory City that is the county seat of Teller County, Colorado, United States. Cripple Creek is a former gold mining camp located southwest of Colorado Springs near the base of Pikes Peak. The Cripple Creek Historic District, which received National Historic...

    , Colorado (1891)
  • Western Australian Gold Rush, Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie Western Australia (1893, 1896)
  • Mount Baker Gold Rush
    Mount Baker Gold Rush
    The Mount Baker Gold Rush occurred in Whatcom County, Washington, United States, upon the discovery of the Lone Jack Mine. The Mount Baker area was flooded with prospectors which led to the staking of many claims both patented and unpatented. The most notable mines staked soon after the Lone...

    , Whatcom County, Washington
    Whatcom County, Washington
    Whatcom County is a county located in the U.S. state of Washington. Its name ultimately derives from the Lummi word Xwotʼqom, meaning "noisy water." As of 2010, the population was 201,140. The county seat is at Bellingham, which is also the county's largest city...

    , United States
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

     (1897–1920's)
  • Klondike Gold Rush
    Klondike Gold Rush
    The Klondike Gold Rush, also called the Yukon Gold Rush, the Alaska Gold Rush and the Last Great Gold Rush, was an attempt by an estimated 100,000 people to travel to the Klondike region the Yukon in north-western Canada between 1897 and 1899 in the hope of successfully prospecting for gold...

    , centered on Dawson City, Yukon
    Yukon
    Yukon is the westernmost and smallest of Canada's three federal territories. It was named after the Yukon River. The word Yukon means "Great River" in Gwich’in....

    , Canada (1896–1899)
  • Atlin Gold Rush, Atlin
    Atlin, British Columbia
    Atlin is a community in northwestern British Columbia, Canada, located on the eastern shore of Atlin Lake. In addition to continued gold-mining activity, Atlin is a tourist destination for fishing, hiking and Heliskiing. As of 2004, there are 450 permanent residents.The name comes from Áa Tlein,...

    , British Columbia (1898)
  • Nome Gold Rush
    Nome Gold Rush
    -Beach:Claim jumping was mostly a problem before the beach gold was found, since it could not be claimed and there was plenty of it. As a matter of fact, the beach gold seems to have been more important than the claimed gold in the creeks. The mining of Nome beach is a good example of gold rushes...

    , Nome, Alaska
    Nome, Alaska
    Nome is a city in the Nome Census Area in the Unorganized Borough of the U.S. state of Alaska, located on the southern Seward Peninsula coast on Norton Sound of the Bering Sea. According to the 2010 Census, the city population was 3,598. Nome was incorporated on April 9, 1901, and was once the...

     (1899-1909)
  • Fairview Goldrush, Oliver(Fairview), British Columbia Canada

Rushes of the 1900s

  • Fairbanks Gold Rush
    Fairbanks Gold Rush
    The Fairbanks Gold Rush was a gold rush that took place in Fairbanks, Alaska in the early 1900s. Fairbanks was a city largely built on Gold Rush fervor at the beginning of the 20th century. Discovery and exploration continue to thrive in and around modern-day Fairbanks.- History :Felix Pedro spent...

    , Fairbanks
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    Fairbanks is a home rule city in and the borough seat of the Fairbanks North Star Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska.Fairbanks is the largest city in the Interior region of Alaska, and second largest in the state behind Anchorage...

    , Alaska (1902–1905)
  • Goldfield Gold Rush, Goldfield
    Goldfield, Nevada
    Goldfield is an unincorporated community and the county seat of Esmeralda County, Nevada, United States, with a resident population of 440 at the 2000 census. It is located about southeast of Carson City, along U.S...

    , Nevada
  • Cobalt Silver Rush
    Cobalt Silver Rush
    The Cobalt Silver Rush started in 1903 when huge veins of silver were discovered by workers on the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway near the Mile 103 post. By 1905 a full-scale silver rush was underway, and the town of Cobalt, Ontario sprang up to serve as its hub. By 1908 Cobalt produced...

    , 1903-5, Cobalt, Ontario
    Cobalt, Ontario
    Cobalt is a town in the district of Timiskaming, province of Ontario, Canada, with a population of 1,223 In 2001 Cobalt was named "Ontario's Most Historic Town" by a panel of judges on the TV Ontario program Studio 2, and in 2002 the area was designated a National Historic Site.-History:Silver was...

    , Canada
  • Porcupine Gold Rush
    Porcupine Gold Rush
    The Porcupine Gold Rush was a gold rush that took place in Northern Ontario starting in 1909 and developing fully by 1911. A combination of the hard rock of the Canadian Shield and the rapid capitalization of mining meant that smaller companies and single-man operations could not effectively mine...

    , 1909–11, Timmins, Ontario
    Timmins, Ontario
    Timmins is a city in northeastern Ontario, Canada on the Mattagami River. At the time of the Canada 2006 Census, Timmins' population was 42,997...

    , Canada – little known, but one of the largest in terms of gold mined, 67 million ounces as of 2001

Rushes of the 1970s

  • Upper Amazon Gold Rush, Upper Amazon region, Brazil
    Brazil
    Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

     and Peru
    Peru
    Peru , officially the Republic of Peru , is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean....


Rushes of the 1980s

  • Amazon Gold Rush, Amazon
    Amazon Rainforest
    The Amazon Rainforest , also known in English as Amazonia or the Amazon Jungle, is a moist broadleaf forest that covers most of the Amazon Basin of South America...

     region, Brazil
  • Mount Kare Gold Rush, Enga Province
    Enga Province
    Enga refers to both an ethnic group located in the highlands of Papua New Guinea and the province in which they are the majority ethnic group.-Physical geography:...

    , Papua New Guinea
    Papua New Guinea
    Papua New Guinea , officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, is a country in Oceania, occupying the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and numerous offshore islands...


Rushes of the 2000s

  • Great Mongolian Gold Rush, Mongolia
    Mongolia
    Mongolia is a landlocked country in East and Central Asia. It is bordered by Russia to the north and China to the south, east and west. Although Mongolia does not share a border with Kazakhstan, its western-most point is only from Kazakhstan's eastern tip. Ulan Bator, the capital and largest...

     (2001)
  • Apuí Gold Rush, Apuí
    Apuí
    Apuí is a municipality located in the Brazilian state of Amazonas. Its population was 18,790 and its area is 54,240 km². The city shot to fame in December 2006 when a Brazilian math teacher by the name of Ivani Valentim da Silva posted descriptions of miners scooping up thousands of dollars...

    , Amazonas, Brazil (2006); approximately 500,000 miners are thought to work in the Amazon's "garimpos" (gold mines).
  • Peruvian Amazon
    Peruvian Amazon
    The Peruvian Amazon is the area of the Amazon jungle included in the territory of Peru, from the east of the Andes to borders with Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil and Bolivia. This region comprises 60% of the country and is marked by a large degree of biodiversity...

     gold rush, Madre de Dios
    Madre de Dios Region
    Madre de Dios is a region in southeastern Peru, bordering Brazil, Bolivia and the Peruvian regions of Puno, Cusco and Ucayali. Its capital is the city of Puerto Maldonado. The name of the region is a very common Spanish language designation for the Virgin Mary, literally meaning Mother of...

    (2009)

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External links