California Gold Rush Essay

829 Words4 Pages

Katie Gill
Mrs. Willinger
Honors U.S. History 1
The Golden Rush of the 19th Century
During the Gold Rush, California could be described as a magnet, attracting people from all over the world. In the second half of the 19th century, an ideal resonated with most Americans; manifest destiny. This is the idea that the United States was destined by God to expand and spread its ideas westward. Especially following the Mexican American War, curiosity formed as the U.S. came into the possession of new territories (California, Nevada, Utah, etc.). In January 1848, James Marshall, a carpenter, was building a sawmill for a Swiss immigrant when he spotted something shiny in the American River (Gold Rush Impacts). His discovery of gold in California would set off a chain reaction leading to mass migrations, and expansion of infrastructure and communication. The California Gold Rush profoundly impacted the United States in the second half of the 19th century, by strengthening global economies, creating social structures, and altering the geographic makeup …show more content…

The influx of gold led to the expansion of manufacturing and the service industries, as many newcomers took advantage of the demand for mining materials, lumber, clothing, and transportation (Gold Rush Impacts). Advances in infrastructure were needed in order to help prospectors reach California, which was fairly isolated at the time (Gold Rush Impacts). These new formations were able to set a foundation for the U.S. that is still followed today. The same transportation routes are followed, and the same goods are still produced. Foreign producers and manufacturers also found new markets for their products in the United States, which led to the creation of new financial services, such as banks. Not only was the gold rush able to benefit the United States, but it was also able to benefit other

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