Beginning of the 49ers

According the the Library of Congress, on January 24, 1848, James W. Marshall discovered gold near Coloma, California. This started the great Western immigration known as “forty-niners.” Nearly 100,000 people arrived in California in 1849. Although many intended to make fortunes in gold, others capitalized on the miners themselves. Between 1848 and 1850, Charles F. Hotchkiss earned $23,000 selling merchandise in San Francisco and Stockton.

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