Timeline Description: The American gold rush began in the middle of the 1800's. It changed the American west, as well as the people. This is a timeline of those events.
|January 1848||James Marshall finds gold
James Marshall was working in California to build a water pump. While in the river he found a shiny metal which turned out to be gold.
|March 1848||Reports about gold aren't believed
A local newspaper heard about the gold discovery and reported about it. Most people in the area didn't believe it.
|August 1848||The gold rush begins
James Marshall tried to keep his discovery a secret, but word quickly spread. By August there were 4000 gold mines in the areas.
|November 1848||The first minted gold
The first shipments of gold sent to the mint left from San Francisco. The ship carried over $500,000 of gold.
|1849||The coming of the 49'ers
The year of 1849 brought travelers from all over the world. They all came to get rich.
|February 1849||Women come to get a husband
Papers advertised for women to come to San Francisco to get husbands among the miners.
|June 1849||A government is formed
The lands were wild and lawless because of so many people arriving at once. The people attempted to set up a government to rule the land.
|December 1849||San Francisco becomes a booming metropolis
San Francisco became the central city for the gold mining towns. Businesses popped up all over the place to accommodate the gold miners.
|January 1850||The Compromise of 1850 is passed
California wanted to become an official state, but they wanted to be free from slavery. The Compromise helped smooth out the anger of those who wanted to keep slaves.
|May 1850||Another gold shipment leaves San Francisco
This time the shipment carried a whopping 1.5 million dollars' worth of gold.
|1850||The gold runs out
Most of the gold on the surface was picked clean by 1850. Men kept coming, though, hoping to get lucky.
|December 1850||The fires of San Francisco
Four huge fires swept the area during the year, burning hundreds of buildings and killing many people. The citizens raised money to set up a fire station.
|1853||Hydraulic mining is introduced
Mining with machines became the preferred way to mine because the machines could dig deeper into the ground. Miners began working for mining companies who owned the machines.
|1857||The gold rush stabilized
The gold rush finally fell off in 1857, when the gold output stabilized at around 45 million dollars a year.
|1884||Hydraulic mining is outlawed
A California judge finally outlawed hydraulic mining because it tore up the land.