Essay on The California Gold Rush

Essay on The California Gold Rush

Length: 4274 words (12.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The California Gold Rush

The California Gold Rush was the biggest and the richest of them all,
but it was no different from any of those that followed in providing
the majority of its participants with much rushing and little gold.

When forty-niners reminisced through beards grown longer and whiter,
the strikes of the past became richer and the nuggets bigger, but the
mournful truth is that most gold hunters would have done better
financially staying at home and been considerably more comfortable.

Let there be no misunderstanding, though the gold across the Sierra
Nevada was rich beyond belief, and many miners made strikes that
deserve the adjective "fabulous." It was just that there was not
enough gold in the streams to make everyone rich. Hubert Howe
Bancroft, historian of the West, estimated that during the peak years
of 1849 and 1850 the gold taken out averaged about $600 per miner.
Averages are usually misleading: this one, on examination, can mean
only that for every miner who struck it rich, there must have been a
platoon who hardly got to see what gold looked like.

It all began, as every schoolchild is taught, at the sawmill of John
Sutter one January day in 1848. A Swiss immigrant, Sutter at the time
ruled, benevolently and graciously, over an estate of 49,000 acres,
which he had received from the Mexican government and had built into
what, amounted to a self-sustaining kingdom. It lay in the valley of
the Sacramento, still almost empty of settlers, and his settlement,
called Sutter's Fort, was situated where Sacramento now stands.

In the summer of 1847 he sent a carpenter named James Marshall, in
charge of a crew...


... middle of paper ...


...The Talisman Press.

5)Rohrbough, Malcolm J. (1997). Days of Gold: The California Gold Rush
and the American Nation. Berkeley and Los Angeles, California:
University of CaliforniaPress.

6)Murbach, J. (1998). Gold Rush History. [Homepage of the Museum of
the City of San Francisco]. [Online]. Available:
http://www.malakoff.com/tcgrhfr.htm [1998].

7)Wiegand, S. (1998). Sacramento was the gateway to the gold.

8)Chambers, C. (1984). California Gold Rush. New York: Troll
Communications.

9)McMorrow, C. (1996). Gold Fever! New York: Random House.

10)Roop, P. & Roop C. (2002). California Gold Rush. New York:
Scholastic Inc.

11)Holliday, J.S. (1981). The World Rushed in. The California Gold
Rush Experience. New York: Simon and Schuster.

12)Ketchum, L (1996). The Gold Rush. Boston: Little, Brown and Co.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Gold Rush of California Essay

- In the United States, there would be a new overhaul to its identity. By 1848, businesses would eventually see a new and prosperous way to make money. The U.S. also began to see a few cultures begin to spark and the attitudes of people would change, especially their views about taking risks. This overhaul is known as the Gold Rush of California. The Gold Rush made an impact on American society through diversity and people.      The traditional beginning of the Gold Rush was the story of James Marshall....   [tags: The California Gold Rush]

Free Essays
3391 words (9.7 pages)

The California Gold Rush Essay

- California, the place to turn cant’s into cans and dreams into plans. The same situation and scenarios apply to today and even over one hundred and sixty five years ago. Then and now are not so different, people are thriving or failing from the land of plenty, supplying themselves with knowledge, wealth, or skill to either spread their wings and take flight or crash and burn. Each state in the United States of America has a correlating nickname to either why it’s famous or an explanation of its history....   [tags: American History, God, Mexico, West, Gold]

Powerful Essays
1037 words (3 pages)

Essay on California Gold Rush

- The California gold rush began on January 24, 1848, in the Sacramento Valley. The first sight of gold nuggets found during the Gold Rush was located in the American River, by James W. Marshall. After the news of the gold became known the tidings spread quickly. Information about Jame's discovery caused thousands of immigrants to migrate, changing the nation forever. Citizens living in California were especially provoked with this, due to their homes being intruded on. Before the gold was first found in 1848 the estimated population was less than 1,000 people....   [tags: Sacramento Valley, Gold, American History]

Powerful Essays
1166 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on The Gold Rush Was Discovered Accidently

- The California Gold Rush was discovered accidently. Most of the world’s gold is deep underground and embedded in hard rock. Unlike anywhere else in the world at that time the gold in California was easy to dig up, free for the taking and required little tools to acquire any gold. All that was requires was a pick or shovel and a pan to shift out the gold from the rock, sand and debris. The Gold Rush affected not only California but the outcome of the nation. It created the expansion of our nation into Western America and California....   [tags: California Gold Rush, United States, California]

Powerful Essays
1022 words (2.9 pages)

California and the Gold Rush of 1849 Essay

- "Gold. Gold. Gold from the American River!" said Samuel Brannan, as he ran through the streets of San Francisco waving a bottle of gold dust in the air that he purchased from John Sutter’s Fort. The encounter of gold nuggets in the Sacramento Valley in early 1848 triggered one of the most crucial occurrences to influence American history during the beginning of the 19th century, the Gold Rush. The Gold Rush of 1849 (1848–1855), also known as the California Gold Rush, was one of the most captivating happenings during westward expansion....   [tags: United States-Mexico relations]

Powerful Essays
943 words (2.7 pages)

Essay about The California Gold Rush in 1849

- The California Gold Rush in 1849 was the catalyst event for the state that earned them a spot in the U.S. union in 1850. This was not the first gold rush in North America; however, it was one of the most important gold rush events. The story of how the gold was discovered and the stories of the 49ers are well known. Men leaving their families in the East and heading West in hopes of striking it rich are the stories that most of us heard about when we learn about the California Gold Rush. Professors and scholars over the last two decades from various fields of study have taken a deeper look into the Gold Rush phenomena....   [tags: war, territory, mexico]

Powerful Essays
824 words (2.4 pages)

A History of the California Gold Rush Essay example

- "The California Gold Rush was the significant national event of its time" ("California Gold Rush: A Look to the Past"). This legendary story begins with one man. John Sutter, one of the richest people in the area, moved to California 1839 with the intent on building his own private empire. Sutter welcomed newcomers to the area because he viewed them as subjects for his self-styled kingdom. In the late 1840s, James Marshall and about 20 men were sent to the river by Sutter to build a sawmill ("The Gold Rush")....   [tags: American History]

Powerful Essays
1179 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on California Gold Rush Of 1849

- Would you travel, live, and work under harsh conditions for months to fulfill a dream. Thousands of gold hunters from all corners of the world did so in hopes of striking rich after an abrupt discovery of gold in the American territory of California. This huge worldwide flock of people became known as The California Gold Rush of 1849. The Gold Rush granted riches to only a handful of miners, but provided Americans as well as many foreigners a new homeland and life. At the start of the 1830 decade, about 500 people resided in California....   [tags: American History]

Powerful Essays
1660 words (4.7 pages)

The California Gold Rush Essay

- The California Gold Rush The California Gold Rush of 1849 is one of the most interesting and exiting events of the United States. From the wild stories of men striking it big, to the heart wrenching tales of people losing everything, these are what make it so alluring. There are many aspects of the California Gold Rush; effects on California; individual stories of struggle; and effects on the United States as a young country looking for stability. San Francisco was a small town of a few hundred people in 1840, but by 1850 it was a huge city whose economy was injected with gold money....   [tags: essays research papers]

Powerful Essays
902 words (2.6 pages)

California Gold Rush Essay

- The California Gold Rush The California Gold Rush was not all about Americans being happy and rich because of the discovery of gold. Indians, Hispanics, African Americans and Chinese all went through some sort of struggle or problem during the Gold Rush period. Not only did men go through rough times but so did some women. The California Gold Rush was a whole different world within California. Gold turned everyone into people they were not. In 1847, an Indian scout brought Mr. James Marshall to Maidu....   [tags: American History]

Powerful Essays
1167 words (3.3 pages)