A small flake of Californian gold from Coloma, the location of Marshall's '48 discovery.
Sutter's Mill was a sawmill, owned by 19th-century pioneer John Sutter, where west-coast gold was first found in significant quantities, setting off the California Gold Rush. It was located on the bank of the South Fork American River in Coloma, California. Gold was discovered on January 24, 1848, by James Wilson Marshall, a carpenter originally from New Jersey.
In 1986 I was driving my parents on a tour of California and Nevada, and we visited the Marshal Gold Discovery State Park.
The gold I'd panned from the San Gabriel Mountains in Los Angeles County had, unfortunately, gone missing in the chaos of my apartment. So that I had at least some Californian gold for my collection, I bought a commemorative coin at Sutter's Mill. The small flake of gold in the miner's pan is from the discovery area. My parents took it with them back to the UK, so it was safe from my disordered '80s lifestyle.
Here's some photos of the coin, it's card and "nugget." Note that what appears to be imperfections, on the right & left sides of the coin, are just small creases on the plastic covering. The coin is good.
This from "Reports Upon the Mineral Resources of the United States", by John Ross Browne, 1867 -
This from "Bankers' Magazine, Journal of the Money Market, and Commercial Digest", Volume 12, 1852 -
James Marshall standing in front of Sutter's sawmill, Coloma, California, Daguerreotype by R. H. Vance
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