Australian Gold Rush

Tools Used In The Gold Rush


Pans were a popular way to find gold during the Australian Gold Rush. Miners would collect river or stream water and sieve through it to leave the shiny pieces of gold.


Puddling was another was to separate gold from clay. To extract gold from clay miners would place the clay/gold mixture into a container. Water would then be poured in. Using a stake the miner would stir the mixture until the clay had dissolved and only the gold was left.


Cradles were an instrument used to wash through a large amount of soil and gravel. To use a cradle the miners would place a large quantity of soil and/or gravel in to the funnel and rock the machine. The mesh piece under the soil mixture sieves the small pieces of sand and gold through and keeps back the big pieces of dirt. Then they would pour water in and look for the shiny gold flakes.


Pickaxes were a commonly used tool for breaking apart solid pieces of rock, soil and clay. Pickaxes were also used to dig longer shafts when the ground became too hard to dig with the shovel.


Shovels were the most basic tool on the goldfields simply used to dig shafts in soft soil and clay.