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ghost towns - gold mines - parks & public lands: wilderness - native culture - history - geology: natural features - glossary - comments


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History - Gold - Period Groups:

Prospectors & Miners

The gold fields of Northern California began drying up. Prospectors came back to the desert to find their fortunes. Once the prospectors made their discovery, they would become miners and work the claim or sell it off and begin the search again. Promoters sought money and investors would provide it. Men would overrun an area and the cycle of gold mines and mining towns would begin.

During the mid-19th century, mining in all areas of the Mojave created boom towns with colorful names and characters. On Christmas Day in 1860, for example, the first producing Mojave mine, named “Christmas Gift,” was opened in Death Valley. As the mining boom continued, borax—“the white gold of the desert”—was discovered; it has been mined profitably in the Death Valley area since. During the 1870s, the Clark Mountain Mining district was established and with it the town of Ivanpah, which at the time was the only American community of any size in the eastern portion of the Mojave.

Gold was discovered in El Dorado Canyon in the late 19th century, where a single mine ultimately produced $1.7 million in gold. Small prospectors, however, generally made very little money, the biggest problem being the costs of transporting supplies to such remote locations. “Boom-or-bust” mining was the usual approach: As soon as a strike played out, miners moved on, leaving ghost towns in their wake.

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Also see:
Boomtown & Mining History
Ghost Towns
Gold Mines
Death Valley Ghost Towns
Mining in Death Valley



Contents & Introduction
Paleo-Indians
Desert Indians
Spanish Explorers
American Explorers
Pioneers
Military
Prospectors & Miners
Ranchers
Railroads
Homesteaders
Route 66 & Hoover Dam
Modern Communities



Prospectors & Miners

Pete Aguereberry

Shorty Harris

Jack Keane

Johnny Lang


Sunrise on Clark Mountain across the Ivanpah Valley

ecology: wildlife - plants - geography: places - MAPS - map/sat - roads & trails: route 66 - old west - communities - weather - book store
ghost towns - gold mines - parks & public lands: wilderness - native culture - history - geology: natural features - glossary - comments
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