The California Gold Rush

906 words 4 pages
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. This rapid growth and development was brought on by an accidental discovery by James Marshall. "I reached my hand down and picked it up; it made my
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The Gold Rush was dying. As the Gold Rush died down, California grew and so did the United States. At the time of the Gold Rush the United States was still unstable in it's economy, government, and independence. The Gold Rush helped change some of this by filling America with over half of a billion dollars worth of gold. This meant changes, changes in the south, and changes in the west. While the South's main income was based on slavery, the North's was based on industrialization. The gold rush meant more production in the North, and less and less in the South. California also entered the Union as a free state, heightening tensions in an already heated feud. At the time James Polk was President of the United States, and he was just finishing dealing with Mexico when gold fever struck. Under his vision of Manifest Destiny, westward expansion had begun with the purchase of California and annexation of Texas. The California Gold Rush had many effects, it changed California, and affected people personally all over the United States, while also changing the Nation, Manifest Destiny had begun. Soon though the civil war would rip apart the temporary high, to the lowest point of American history ever. The California Gold Rush of 1984 will never be forgotten and always hold untold stories of the wild west, which will forever attract fascinated students and historians

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