The museum at La Brea Tar Pits remains closed until further notice. The park at La Brea Tar Pits is currently open, and visitors can see paleontologists working at our excavation site weekly. See NHMLAC's response to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Discovering Gold: Exploring the California Gold Rush

Uncover the history of California's Gold Rush through NHM's Gem and Mineral Hall

Gold Rush Case in Gem Hall

California's nicknamed "The Golden State", and it's not just for our sunshine. The 1840s marked the beginning of a gold rush that would change California forever. While it wasn't the last or first time an underground discovery would shape California, it left an indelible mark on California's history as well as the perception of the state in the U.S. and abroad. It's fascinating history, and NHM's Gem and Mineral Hall captures the story like no place else. Join Gallery Interpreter Effie Ralli as she explains how this momentous discovery impacted the people and history of our state!

Gold nuggets
You'll see real California gold—lots of it!