Gold Necklace

James Marshall’s discovery of gold at Sutter’s mill in California in 1848 transformed the wealth and reach of the nation. Farmers abandoned their homesteads, sailors their ships, and adventurers from China and elsewhere sailed across oceans to seek their fortunes in California’s mines and streams. Extracting gold often left these lands devastated, but these expeditions also financed the growth and statehood of California. Those who didn’t strike out west still participated in gold fever by trading in gold coins and purchasing gold jewelry. During the early 1800s, Englishman Thomas Lowe introduced new gold plating techniques to the American jewelry industry. These innovations were put to good use during the gold rush, and produced delicate pieces like this gold necklace from the mid-to-late 1800s.
Object Name
date made
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
with pendant (overall style)
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Costume
Clothing & Accessories
American Enterprise
American Enterprise
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center


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