#94 - Gold Rush

Posted on Thursday, June 17th, 2021 at 12:48 pm by LaLonde Jewelers

On television these days is a program called Gold Rush. I enjoy watching this and I learn some things.

Over the last twenty years, gold has shot up in value so it has made it profitable for these miners to revisit areas where previous mines were. They went back in to see what the newest mining techniques could find that the old miners missed.

So as I watched these guys a number of questions entered my mind. Like how do they transport the valuable gold, who do they sell it to, do they go right to the mints or sell to a middle man. How much do they make being on a TV program?

Charlotte Mint

The original US gold rush days was in the south back in the 1820’s in North Carolina and Georgia. In 1938 the United States opened mints in Charlotte (1838-1861) only One to Five-dollar gold coins were minted there.

Dahlonega, Georgia started minting gold coins in (1838- 1861). Gold coins only.
Very few of the coins from Charlotte and Dahlonega survived, one reason was in the early years’ gold prices rose so a five-dollar coin could fetch $5.50 if melted down. So many of these met their fate.

In the 1830’s a miner would have to travel all the way to Philadelphia which would take weeks over a dangerous trek with Indians and bandits. Then wait several months for the mint to return the coinage.

Many would sell their gold to bankers or investors at a reduced rate to alleviate the hassle.

This was the same reason that a mint was opened in Carson City, Nevada which minted coins from (1870-1899). This was to service the silver from the Comstock Lode which the miners had to take all the way to San Francisco again over a treacherous journey.

New Orleans minted gold and silver coins from (1838-1861) and from (1878-1909).

Now these gold rush guys today can have their gold refined by Mints the Canadian Mint is widely used by these miners.

Then is there is the cost of shipping, insuring and the wait time to get your bullion back. If your company is flush and you want to refine millions in raw gold you may have the time to wait and keep the 10%. After all that is $100,000.00 on every million. But if you are short on funds and only have $30,000.00 in gold, then give up the 3 or 4 thousand and keep your business running.

Sometimes I watch these guys and see what it cost to run equipment, pay for fuel and the claim and watch all the breakdowns and mishaps. I shout at the TV and say just go open a shop on a busy avenue in any city in the US and put up a sign “WE BUY GOLD” and buy some and sell it and go home every night and have a good meal. And you don’t have to fight the bears for it.

Written by Dan LaLonde, G.G., G.I.A.
Lalonde Jewelers & Gemologists
The Gem Expert