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Exploration of Different Gold Mining Tools and Techniques, at Columbia State Historic Park

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Language Arts And English +6 Age Levels Primary (5 to 8 years old), Elementary (9 to 12 years old), Middle School (13 to 15 years old), High School (16 to 18 years old), Post-Secondary, Adults

Historical images of placer gold mining tools and techniques used, in Columbia, CA may be used for learning different placer gold mining techniques. These visual aids may provide a better understanding of how the types of mining tools changed over time, in Columbia, CA. As the California Gold Rush began miners traveled throughout the Sierra Nevada foothills, in search for gold. These miners traveled with very few items; some which included a gold pan, pick and shovel for easier travel. As more gold was discovered, mining parties established mining camps or tent towns; and, the cradle or rocker box was used to wash gold. Further development of mining camps brought in the use of long toms, sluice boxes and water diversions created for mining. The history of Columbia State Historic Park follows this storyline, but evolved into a full-scale mining town. Eighty-Seven Million dollars worth of gold, in the 1860s prices (Twelve to Sixteen dollars per ounce vs. current price of gold is over One Thousand dollars) was extracted from Columbia, CA. The amount of gold not only attracted miners, but business people, as well. In the mid 1850s, brick buildings with iron doors were built to provide more stable structures for the strong merchant economy. Today Columbia State Historic Park is home to the largest collection of gold rush era brick buildings, in California; whereas, structures of other mining camps of the California Gold Rush no longer exist.