CABARRUS COUNTY, N.C. -- The first documented discovery of gold in North Carolina occurred nearly a half century before the California touched off the nation's most famous gold rush.
On John Reed’s farm, in Cabarrus County, a 17-pound gold nugget was discovered---in 1799. That’s nearly a half century before gold was found at Sutter’s Mill in the state of California.
During its peak years, gold mining was second only to farming in the number of North Carolinians it employed. The estimated value of gold recovered reached more than one million dollars a year.
The Tarheel state actually led the nation in gold production until 1848, when it was eclipsed by the great rush to California.
The Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site is now operated by the North Carolina Office of Archives and History and is open to the public.
This morning on Larry’s Look, we got a tour of the area around the mine and the actually mine shaft. This also included the visitor center that contains exhibits of gold and historical mining equipment.
For all the details, go to: www.nchistoricsites.org/Reed.