Landmarks of American History and Culture: Workshops for Teachers

California's Gold Rush: Many Contexts, Many Histories

June 22-27 or July 13-18, 2014


California State University, Sacramento and the Center for Sacramento History invite teachers to spend a week this summer immersed in study of the stories, places, and people of the Gold Rush.

Mountain Jack

California’s Gold Rush is a seemingly well-known story: In early 1848 gold was discovered at John Sutter’s mill site on the American River. A worldwide “rush for riches” brought masses of eager gold-seekers to California to “see the elephant.” In this workshop teachers will gain an expansive understanding of California’s Gold Rush as more than a brief episode in the lives of those who believed and pursued the dream of easy riches. Far from a local event on the far western reaches of the American frontier, California’s gold rush was global with far-reaching consequences for the nation.

Based in Historic Old Sacramento, workshop participants will explore historic sites throughout Sacramento's gold region, engage in dialogue with leading scholars and in-depth study of primary source materials. Working with the workshop’s co-directors, scholars, site interpreters, and master teacher, teachers will develop curriculum that incorporates the workshop’s key historical themes: the Gold Rush as conquest; the Gold Rush as a national and global event; the Gold Rush as an urban and industrial experience; the ecological history of the Gold Rush; historical memory of the Gold Rush.

Joseph Sharp, Miner
This is the inaugural year of California's Gold Rush: Many Contexts, Many Histories. The workshop website is constantly evolving, so please be sure to check back for more complete information about the program.

We hope you choose to apply to join us in the gold fields. We look forward to working with you!

Marcia Eymann
Center for Sacramento History

Image Credits: E. Hall Martin, Mountain Jack and a Wandering Miner, 1850. Oil on Canvas, 39 1/2 x 72 in. Oakland Museum of California, gift of Councours d'Antiques, Art Guild.

Unknown Maker, "Joseph Sharp, Miner." Sixth Plate Ambrotype. Collection of the Bancroft Library.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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