Gold – 1700 & 1800’s

We concluded the previous entry about the history of gold with its discovery in Brazil in 1700 and that country hence producing two-thirds of the world’s supply.

The first U.S. gold coin is struck by Ephraim Brasher, a goldsmith, in 1787. Five years later, in 1792, the United States passes The Coinage Act and adopts a bimetallic silver-gold standard. Thus the U.S. dollar is defined as equivalent to 24.75 grains of fine gold and 371.25 grains of fine silver.

Gold is found in Cabarrus County, North Carolina in 1799. The nugget weighs 17 pounds and marks the first documented discovery in the United States. The Gold Rush begins with the next discovery, in Little Meadow Creek, North Carolina, in 1803.

In 1848, a sawmill building crew member by the name of John Marshall finds a flake of gold near Sacramento, California. This marks the beginning of the California Gold Rush and considerably hastens the settlement of the American West.

In 1868, in South Africa, a man by the name of George Harrison finds gold while preparing his land to build a house. South Africa has since been the source of about 40% of all gold ever mined.

John Steward MacArthur obtains a British patent in 1887 for the cyanidation process for extracting gold from ore. Due to this process, the world gold output doubles during the next twenty years. The last gold rush of the century begins eleven years later, in 1898, when two prospectors discover gold while fishing in Klondike, Alaska. Charlie Chaplin immortalized the event in his movie, “The Gold Rush,” in 1925.

To be continued… Meanwhile, here is a famous scene from the no less famous movie. Enjoy.

Read all posts about the History of Gold HERE.

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About PS MacMurray

Paschal'Simon MacMurray, the scribe, specializes in providing a no nonsense Facebook and Blog presence for small business owners who want quality without breaking the bank. PS MacMurray, the artisan, creates art on a whim using fabric, paper, beads, twine and wire. View all posts by PS MacMurray

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