Westward Expansion: California Gold Rush
Read about the discovery of gold in California and how this lured many gold seekers west. Learn about the routes they traveled, how they mined the gold, and the difficulties of life in a mining camp. Includes first-hand accounts, historic drawings, audios, virtual tours, maps, timelines, and a lesson plan. There are links to eThemes Resources on the Oregon Trail and Trails West.
The Discovery of Gold in California
Read about the discovery of gold in John Sutter's own words. He describes how this discovery ruined his business. Use the links at the left to read more first-hand accounts and to see lithographic views. NOTE: This site contains ads.
The Sacramento Bee: Gold Rush
Explore the numerous links at this newspaper site that offers extensive information about the Gold Rush. Learn more about the people involved and view maps of the travels they made by land and by ocean. "Resources" includes a timeline and an online quiz.
Experience Gold Rush
This multimedia site offers audio and graphics about California and the Gold Rush.
PBS: The Gold Rush
Read some fun facts about the Gold Rush, including reasons why people paid $100 for water and the travelers' lack of cleanliness. NOTE: This site contains ads.
The Evolution of Gold Mining
Learn how the methods of mining for gold changed over time. Includes graphics.
The California Gold Country: The Mining Camps
Click on a name to read more about these mining camps.
Marshall Gold Discovery State Park
This PDF has a map showing the site where Marshall discovered gold as well as other sites in the area.
PBS: The American Experience
Read about three choices gold seekers had for traveling west to California.
The Huntington Library
Students can follow the journey of a Chinese boy and an American girl as they travel to California. The students have to help the characters make decisions along the way.
The Huntington Library
Click on "Begin the Adventure" to learn about the California Gold Rush. This library site includes excerpts from primary documents and historic drawings.
Gold Rush! California's Untold Stories
This site illustrates stories of people who came to California during the gold rush period. Find out about jobs, entertainment, laws, lives of natives and immigrants, and living conditions of miners and people lived in gold rush cities. You can take a virtual tour, listen to audios, and view paintings of gold rush experience.
Enchanted Learning: Gold
Learn about the metal of gold and how its purity is measured. NOTE: This site contains ads.
World Gold Council
Read these answers to common questions to learn about gold, including how far all the gold in the world would stretch if it was put together.
Letter Writings and Photographs from the California Gold Rush
Read letter excerpts that miners and other residents of the Mother Lode region wrote about the California gold rush.
Gold Rush: Fun Facts
Read fun and interesting facts of Gold Rush. NOTE: This site includes ads.
EconEdLink: Economic Spotter: Supply and Demand at the Gold Rush
This lesson plan uses a gold rush context as an instrument to teach demand and supply concepts to students. NOTE: This site has links to external sites.
eThemes Resource: Westward Expansion: Oregon Trail
These sites have information about the Oregon Trail during the time of westward expansion. Includes timelines, maps, and photographs. There are links to eThemes Resources on covered wagons and other trails.
eThemes Resource: Westward Expansion: Trails West
These sites are about the Santa Fe, Overland, California, and the Mormon Pioneer trails. See pictures of the West in the 1800s and study maps of the trails. Read about life along the trails. Includes eThemes resources on the Oregon Trail and covered wagons. Watch a video on Arrow Rock, a stopping point on the way West.