Theres gold in the hills of California! These words echoed around the world in 1848 and started a mass migration to the wilderness of interior California. Gold seekers trekked from every part of the world and every walk of life to sift the streams for gold. Mining companies brought machines to the mountains and turned camps into boomtowns as they blasted and dug deep into the earth to follow the gold bearing veins. There is still gold in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, at the California State Mining and Mineral Museum, in historic Mariposa. This is where explorers John C. Fremont and Kit Carson found the rich Mariposa Vein and opened the first mill to crush ore and extract gold in California. You are invited to discover for yourself Californias mineral wealth, colorful history and geologic diversity as you view the official mineral collection of the state of California. The collection, which began in 1880, contains over 13,000 objects including mining artifacts, rare specimens of crystalline gold in its many forms, as well as beautiful gem and mineral specimens from California and around the world. The collection was moved to Mariposa in 1983 after residing in San Francisco, for over 100 years. The museum became a state park in 1999.

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