Objective: To examine the causes and effects of the boomtowns and ghost towns of the West.
Gold and Silver Strikes - The CA Gold Rush began in 1849, attracting thousands of gold hunters known as forty-niners .
Above: Levis clothing Below: Levis Logo Audio: The Story of Levi Strauss & Co.
Major "Strikes" in the California Gold Rush In 1852 the take for the year was $80 million ($1.9 billion in 2005 dollars). 1. Sutter's Mill/Coloma - Jan. 24, 1848 James Marshall kicked off the California gold rush when he spotted some pea-sized bits of gold in a mill raceway. The news brought thousands of prospectors to the area, but neither Marshall nor his employer John Sutter prospered from the find. 8. Comstock Lode | 1859 The discovery of silver on the other side of the Sierras in Nevada brought an end to the California gold rush; at its height, about $80 million (some $1.9 billion in 2005 dollars) had been pulled annually from the gold fields, but that figure had fallen by almost half when the Comstock Lode was discovered.
Gold and silver mines were discovered throughout the West. Thousands of miners from the U.S., Europe, Mexico, and China flocked to the West. White and Chinese miners hoping to strike it rich during the California Gold Rush at Auburn Ravine in 1852. Audio: A Miner’s Life Chinese miners working an abandoned tailing.
I came from Salam city with a wash bowl on my knee, I am going to California, the Gold dust for to see. It rained all night the day I left, the weather it was dry, the sun so hot I froze to death, oh brothers don't you cry. Oh California that's the land for me; I'm going to Sacramento with a wash bowl on my knee. I'll be in San Francisco soon and then I'll look around, and when I see the gold lumps there, I'll pick them off the ground. I'll scrap the mountains clean my boys, I'll drain the rivers dry, a pocketful of rocks bring home, so brothers don't you cry. A Song Sung by the Forty - Niners
Boomtowns - towns that grew up near major mining sites · Some boom towns developed into cities, such as Denver, CO, and Reno, NV. Reno, Nevada c.1868 Reno, Nevada 1997
Boomtown - The General Store, Corinne, Boxelder Co., Utah
Iditarod Gold Sled (1912) Dogs hauling gold from the boom-town of Iditarod, Alaska
· Many of these new towns became abandoned ghost towns when the ore disappeared. Silver City, Idaho
· Mexican and Chinese miners faced severe discrimination. Tens of thousands of Chinese immigrants came to San Francisco, California, in the 1850s to participate in the gold rush. However, anti-Chinese racial prejudices among miners grew in the midst of the gold frenzy. Further anti-Chinese sentiment hampered economic prospects as Chinese miners were only allowed to work on sites abandoned by white miners.