The California gold was discovered by James Marshall, a carpenter at Sutters Mill in the Sacramento Valley prompting miners f

The California gold was discovered by James Marshall, a carpenter at Sutters Mill in the Sacramento Valley prompting miners f

American History



Course Instructor

DateThe California gold was discovered by James Marshall, a carpenter at Sutter’s Mill in the Sacramento Valley prompting miners from China, Australia and Europe. This was after the Mexican war that saw America ending up with Texas, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and California. The wave of 49ers who were fortune seekers came from all over the world and greatly influenced the economy and social life of California and America at large. Although a few of the 49ers made fortune out of the gold, some of them found other means of living particularly after the gold became scarce (Lewis, 2010).

Discovery of gold in California and Nevada drew thousands of miners to join the Gold Rush and the mining equipment was moved from one location to the other. It was one of the greatest adventures in human history that contributed to the development of California. The Gold Rush largely improved America in terms of trade, shipping and communications such as railroad lines built to the Pacific Coast ( Lewis, 2010). Additionally, the event changed the culture of America particularly the faster settling of the west that sealed the doom of the Indians west of the Mississippi. The diversity of young intelligent men from around the world brought in different ways of gold mining.

I chose the 1849 Gold Rush because of its association with the development of both California and America. The Gold Rush has brought in new ideas and cultural change that has greatly influenced America. Having toured California and the gold mining site, I felt that 1849 Gold Rush was alive and worth talking about.

Compromise of 1850

The compromise included a series of bills passed to address slavery issues where the slavery matters were to be decided by popular sovereignty in admitting the new states. Moreover, the bills prohibited slave trade in Columbia settled a Texas boundary dispute as well as establishing a strict fugitive slave trade. By 1950, many slavery disagreement issues tainted the relationship between the Northerners and the Southerners. There were tensions whether the newly acquired western land after the Mexican War would allow slavery. The Congress further passed Fugitive Slave Law that decreased the number of slaves escaping to the North annually but the North was unhappy with the law (Stegmaier, 2012).

Compromise of 1850 was very significant in the American history since it contributed to the Civil War. The Southern and Northern politics were heightened during this place and the compromise seemed to undermine a divided nation on the slavery issue. Slavery was a serious issue in America and addressing it was very sensitive in congress. The Compromise of 1850 showed how concerned some legislators were in addressing the plight of the slaves. It further showed how southerners strongly defended the issue of slavery. It attempted to settle the slavery question though it allowed the slaves to work for the South although it prohibited slave trade in Washington DC (Stegmaier, 2012).

The Compromise of 1850 played a significant role in heightening the tension between the Southerners and the Northerners that finally contributed to the Civil War particularly the introduction of the Fugitive Slave Act. The north was not impressed and they had to stop the act and they felt that the slaves should be returned to their rightful owners who escaped from the Underground Railroad. The south wanted to have the slaves back but they had to prove that they were the rightful owners because lack of evidence would lead to freeing of the slaves. This agreement was either temporal because the South later wanted to separate from the North. Crisis continued to pile due to the increased level of dissatisfaction that prompted anger that turned to rage and rage to violence. Southerners were always alert to protect their peculiar institutions even after the Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854) and the struggles that followed over the bleeding Kansas where the group began to shoot.

However, Compromise of 1850 rather delayed the civil war by trying to create peace between the two factions. It succeeded in accomplishing its intentions at that particular moment of holding the union together even though it was a temporary solution. The Compromise of 1850 led to more other bills such as the Kansas-Nebraska act although this was largely disliked and it led to violence in Kansas. However, it delayed the Civil War by delaying the splitting of the biggest Union that was hugely feared by Americans (Stegmaier, 2012).

The Compromise of 1850 is very significant today in referring to the developments of the Civil War. It reminds Americans on the seriousness of the slavery in America and the division that was not only based on political parties but on the slavery issues in the Congress. The Compromise of 1850 is an evident of the role the political class can help in saving a situation such as tension between regions, both locally and internationally. It reminds Americans on the compromises people can always arrive into to create peace.


Lewis, F. (2010). Gold rush, 1847-1850. S.l.: Xlibris Corp.Stegmaier, M. J. (2012). Texas, New Mexico, and the Compromise of 1850: Boundary dispute and sectional crisis. Lubbock, Tex: Texas Tech University Press.