What Was The Significance Of The Gold Rush

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The California Gold Rush is arguably one of the most important events in United States history. The gold rush caused what is considered to be the largest mass migration in United States history, bringing in 300,000 people by 1855, 25% of whom were immigrants from other countries. Not only was California rich in people, it was rich in gold. Approximately 750,000 pounds, two billion dollars’ worth, of gold was extracted from the earth from the time gold was first found in 1848 to the time the rush ended in 1855. The gold rush was extremely influential in the development of California and the progression of the United States.
It all began after a man by the name of James Wilson Marshall found a 1/3 of an ounce piece of gold in the American
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In the year 1949 approximately 80,000 individuals immigrated into California. These men became known as the infamous ‘49ers. Word of the gold continued to spread like wildfire and miners from China, England, and Australia began showing up in California with the hopes of becoming rich too. By 1852, the year the gold rush peaked, the vast majority of people who came to the “Land of Gold” were men who had left their families and lives behind. Once the husbands had left women were forced to take care of the homestead, farms, and children by …show more content…
Before there were trains, planes, and automobiles, there were very few ways for eastern Americans to get to California. One of the options was to set sail for six months around the tip of South America and then up to San Francisco. The second option was to travel for six months on the California-Oregon trail in a covered wagon. Both options were not ideal as they were expensive and dangerous. This lead to the construction of the very first transcontinental railroad, the Panama Railway. This railway was built by Americans across Panama in order to cut several months off of the trip to California. By 1850, there were several sections of railroads in the United States, but none that crossed the country completely. On July 1, 1862, just 12 years after the gold rush, President Lincoln signed the Pacific Railway Bill that completed the first transcontinental railway in the United States. Without the urgent need to get to California, the history of American transportation would have been pushed back

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