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Gold rush

A gold rush is a period of feverish migration of workers into the area of a dramatic discovery of commercial quantities of gold, to pan or placer mine for gold.

Gold rushes became a feature of the 19th century. Factors that led thousands at a time to abandon daily Industrial Revolution drudgery and travel to gold fields (diggings) included

These areas included Anecdotally, some few miners made fortunes, several suppliers and traders made good money, and numerous unfortunates endured hardship and privation in exotic frontiers of civilisation for little ultimate reward. Demographically, several gold rushes shook up the patterns of settlement, resulting in the opening up of previously sparsely-settled areas and a Cantonese diaspora around the Pacific Rim. Gold-rush culture, often reflected in popular song, tended to promote self-images of robust masculinity.

Wikipedia articles cover the gold rushes in