California Gold Rush Essay

703 Words3 Pages

Gold Rush
The California Gold Rush which occurred between 1848 to 1855 was a gold rush that began on January 24, 1848. The event was defined by when gold was found by James W. Marshall at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California. The news of gold brought approximately 300,000 people to California from the rest of the United States and abroad. The sudden influx of gold cause; the money supply to reinvigorated the American economy, increased population which allowed California to go rapidly to statehood, in the Compromise of 1850, and accelerated the decline of population of Native Americans.

Gold was discovered in California as early as March 9, 1842, at Rancho San Francisco, in the mountains north of present-day Los Angeles. Californian native …show more content…

At first, most Argonauts, as they were also known, traveled by sea. From the East Coast, a sailing voyage around the tip of South America would take four to five months, and cover approximately 18,000 nautical miles (21,000 mi; 33,000 km). An alternative was to sail to the Atlantic side of the Isthmus of Panama, take canoes and mules for a week through the jungle, and then on the Pacific side, wait for a ship sailing for San Francisco. There was also a route across Mexico starting at Veracruz. The companies providing such transportation created vast wealth among their owners and included the U.S. Mail Steamship Company, the federally subsidized Pacific Mail Steamship Company, and the Accessory Transit Company. Many gold-seekers took the overland route across the continental United States, particularly along the California Trail. Each of these routes had its own deadly hazards, from shipwreck to typhoid fever and cholera. In the early years of the rush, much of the population growth in the San Francisco area was due to steamship travel from New York City through overland portages in Nicaragua and Panama and then back up by steamship to San Francisco.While traveling, many steamships from the eastern seaboard required the passengers to bring kits, which were typically full of personal belongings such as clothes, guidebooks, tools, etc. In addition to personal belongings, Argonauts were required to bring barrels full of beef, biscuits, butter, pork, rice, and salt. While on the steamships, travelers could talk to each other, smoke, fish, and other activities depending on the ship they traveled. Still, the dominant activity held throughout the steamships was gambling, which was ironic because segregation between wealth gaps was prominent throughout the ships. Everything was segregated between the rich vs.

Open Document