Essay On The Gold Rush

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The Gold Rush was a time when many people in United States rushed west in hopes of discovering gold. This attracted thousands of people from all around America. Women played a key role in the Gold Rush. They had lots of jobs when it came to migrating west. Some cooked, some cleaned, and others did laundry. The cooks earned a salary of about thirty dollars per day. Bakers made about eighteen thousand dollars per month. Prostitutes made an average of about fifth thousand dollars in one month. Saloon keepers made about two-hundred and fifty dollars per month. In the article No Place for a Woman, Patricia Marcello said “By 1849 standards this was big money, but not in gold country, where high wages were necessary for survival. At one point, a dozen eggs cost ten dollars and one potato or one onion went for a dollar each. Often, miners struggled to support themselves.” Women that took part in the Gold Rush had to be very brave to deal with the hard times. In the article No Place for a Woman, Patricia Marcello stated “Despite their trying circumstances, or perhaps because of them, the women of the Gold Rush were some of the boldest and grittiest women in American History.” They faced many difficulties and did a large amount of back-breaking work. There were very few women that were gold seekers. They traveled for months in horrid conditions and money was scarce. It seemed impossible that the women would make it back with any money left over. One of the problems that women faced was poor living conditions. They either slept on the ground or in tents. It was not until they knew they had found a productive area would they begin to build a log cabin. This was not much better because log cabins had dirty floors and did not have any window... ... middle of paper ... ... Rush, there were a few that prospered. One of these people was a cook named Jenny Wimmer. She became very wealthy due to the discovery of the first gold nugget which was found at the bottom of her boiling pot. A few months after her discovery, over 20,000 people went searching for gold in that area. The women during this time took part in several activities. Some gambled and others became prostitutes. One of the famous games they engaged in was “Monte-Money”. Those women that dealt for this game were bound to make a fortune without getting a speck of dirt on their clothes. Those who chose to become prostitutes, made their living traveling from camp to camp by mule. In conclusion, women were essential during the Gold Rush. Those who took part faced very hard times and were considered brave. Some women suffered greatly, and others survived and were prosperous.

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