The miners and prospectors did not, however, exceed a few hundred for several years.
Although in 1880 numerous prospectors discovered extensive deposits of alluvial gold, its exploitation was not generally successful, and farms took the place of mines.
In 1883 the discovery of Moodie's Reef near the Kaap Valley led to a considerable influx of diggers and prospectors from the colonies and Europe, and by 1884 the Sheba Mine had been opened up, and Barberton, with a population of 5000 inhabitants, sprung into existence.
The " pan " is now only used by prospectors, while the " cradle " and " tom " are practically confined to the Chinese; the sluice is considered to be the best contrivance for washing gold gravels.
Olympia was chosen as the temporary seat of government, and Governor Stevens at once set to work to extinguish the Indian titles to land and to survey a route for a railway, which was later to become the Northern Pacific. The Indians, alarmed by the rapid growth of the white population, attempted to destroy the scattered settlements and the wandering prospectors for gold, which had been discovered in eastern Washington in 1855.
Placer gold was found at the mouth of the creek in 1879, and the city was settled in 1880 by two prospectors named Joseph Juneau and Richard Harris.
He permitted many members of his regiment who had been prospectors in California to prospect the territory, with the result that mines were located at Stockton, Bingham Canyon, Little Cottonwood and elsewhere; but attempts to smelt lead-silver ore near Stockton about 1866 were not successful, and the mining of precious metals did not become an established industry in the Territory until about 1870.
Later on, in 1887, both Boers and gold prospectors of all nationalities were overrunning his country, and Umbandine asked for a British resident.
A rush of prospectors at once took place to the banks of the Orange and Vaal rivers, and resulted in considerable discoveries, so that in 1870 there was a mining camp of no less than 10,000 persons on the " River Diggings."
But towards the close of 1870 stones were found at Jagersfontein and at Dutoitspan, far from the Vaal river, and led to a second great rush of prospectors, especially to Dutoitspan, and in 1871 to what is now the Kimberley mine in the neighbourhood of the latter.
Attempts to mine the copper followed, and the prospectors and hunters who penetrated northward sent to the Cape reports of the existence of a great river whose waters always flowed.
Railways were still far from the Transvaal border, and Natal not only sent her own colonists to the new fields, but also offered the nearest route for prospectors from Cape Colony or from Europe.
Immediately before the Civil War, petroleum was discovered in shallow wells near Parkersburg, and there was a great rush of prospectors and speculators to the Little Kanawha Valley.