Segments in this Video

Spanish Colonization (04:39)


Imagine if California remained a part of Mexico. Three Landmark events contributed to the gold rush: annexation of Texas, James Marshall discovering a nugget, and California becoming a U.S. Territory. Francisco de Orellana discovers Spanish California.

Memory of Humanity (05:10)

Nomadic Asiatic tribes colonize the continent. The United States purchases the Louisiana territory and annexes Florida, Texas, and Oregon. Mexico cedes California; Marshall discovers gold at Sutter's Mill.

Turning Point in History (03:40)

If Marshall discovered gold days or weeks earlier, California would have remained a territory of Mexico. Samuel Brannon purchases as much property as possible. Schools and workplaces are abandoned to search for gold.

Gold Rush Begins (03:45)

Europeans, Chinese, and U.S. Citizens travel to California to prospect for gold. Flex, dusts, and nuggets are gathered. Gold contains conductive properties and can be used as currency.

Gold Rush Lasts Eight Years (03:05)

Hiram Pierce came too late to the gold rush and suffered from fatigue and bankruptcy. Prospectors turn to alcohol and prostitutes for comfort. Levi Strauss and Bannon grow rich because they supplied the miners with goods.

Mushroom Towns (04:50)

San Francisco citizens construct lodgings out of abandoned ships and shantytowns erupt across the West. Gold from California finances the Union Forces during the Civil War. Relationships between Americans and Native Americans struggle.

Credits: The Gold Rush (00:47)

Credits: The Gold Rush

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The Gold Rush

Part of the Series : Butterfly Effect (Season 2)
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $129.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $194.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $129.95



January 24, 1848. Coloma, California. In a saw mill belonging to Swiss pioneer John Sutter, James W. Marshall, a carpenter, finds pieces of shining metal in the stream next to the saw mill: it’s gold! Marshall shares his discovery with his boss, who decides to keep this news secret—a secret the two men are unable to keep. The news spreads like wildfire and is confirmed by a number of newspapers in March 1848. It’s the start of an unprecedented gold rush. Waves of immigrants from all over the world arrive in California, raising the population from 15,000 to several hundred thousand. The Indians are driven out, expropriated and decimated by disease. The first transcontinental railroad is built, and a Californian constitution is soon passed. Criminality also explodes: this is the beginning of the myth of the “Wild West” and its infamous outlaws. The Gold Rush will end several years later, but California and the American mentality will be changed by it forever.

Length: 26 minutes

Item#: BVL145618

ISBN: 978-1-64198-885-8

Copyright date: ©2017

Closed Captioned

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