The Impact of the Gold Rush
The gold rush caused economic growth that changed California permanently. San Francisco grew to become a center of banking, manufacturing, shipping, and trade. In the beginning, the population went from 400 to 35,000 between 1845-1850. Not only this, but Sacramento became the center of a productive farming region.
The gold rush also had some bad effects too, though. It ruined Californios by not respecting their customs or legal rights, sometimes Americans even seized their property looking for gold.
Native Americans suffered too. Thousands died from diseases brought over from foreign countries. Anglo-Americans thought the Natives stood in progress, so they were hunted down. California’s Native population went from 150,000-58,000. Although the population decreased for Natives, it increased overall. 250,000 people came to California by the end of 1850. California now enough people to now apply for statehood. It was finally admitted as a free state in 1850. California’s statehood, unfortunately, created turmoil it disrupted the equal number of free and slave states. In 1852, the gold rush had officially ended.