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Gold Rush Stories: 49 Tales of Seekers, Scoundrels, Loss, and Luck

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May 12, 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Rocklin Campus S 111 (Sewell Hall)
5100 Sierra College Blvd., Rocklin, CA 95677
$5 general, $2 students/seniors; Museum members free

Official launch of his new book from the Sierra College Press!

Event Details

Event held at Sierra College

Gary Noy, Author, Historian, Sierra College Emeritus Professor

His new book is the follow-up to the award-winning Sierra Stories: Tales of Dreamers, Schemers, Bigots, and Rogues

book coverThe focus of this lecture will be on the relationship between the California Gold Rush and the California Grizzly Bear. The grizzly transformed from a majestic and evocative representation of the pre-Gold Rush era to a formidable and ferocious obstacle to cultural progress that needed to be conquered. During the Gold Rush, struggle for dominance of the landscape ensued between the grizzly and the gold seeker, a bloody battle between a remarkable force of nature and the insatiable power of greed. The lecture will consider these realities plus examine how the grizzly ultimately came to be the almost cuddly symbol of the State of California.

Gary's new book from the Sierra College Press and Heyday Books, Gold Rush Stories, explores the deeply human stories of the California Gold Rush generation, drawing out all the brutality, tragedy, humor, and prosperity as lived by those who experienced it. In less than ten years, more than 300,000 people made the journey to California, some from as far away as Chile and China. Many of them were dreamers seeking a better life, like Mifflin Wistar Gibbs, who eventually became the first African American judge, and Eliza Farnham, an early feminist who founded California’s first association to advocate for women’s civil rights. Still others were eccentrics—perhaps none more so than San Francisco’s self-styled king, Norton I, Emperor of the United States. As Gold Rush Stories relates the social tumult of the world rushing in, so too does it unearth the environmental consequences of the influx, including the destructive flood of yellow ooze (known as “slickens”) produced by the widespread and relentless practice of hydraulic mining. In the hands of a native son of the Sierra, these stories and dozens more reveal the surprising and untold complexities of the Gold Rush.

The State Library has images from the book on their website.

Books will available for sale and autographing by the author.

Become a member of the Museum and get reduced entrance prices for all lectures and events!

Levels of Membership for One Year:

  • Individual: $35.00 covers one person
  • Child/Student: $10.00
  • Member Duo: $60.00 covers two individuals
  • Family: $70.00 covers up to five individuals. Maximum of two adults
  • Senior: $25.00 covers one person

Sponsored by: Natural History Museum, Sierra College Press

For more information:

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