The evolution of mining law

Any law or custom concerning the rules of mining could only be adopted with a consensus of the community. At first this might just be an agreement among a particular company or camp whose rules might differ from all its neighbors. But gradually meetings of the different camps, and even whole neighborhoods, were held until it became common to form large tracts into what were then called mining districts, and uniform laws were enacted to cover the whole area. Because of this gradual evolution, … [Read more...]

Mining law

Just after the discovery of gold at the sawmill in Coloma, both John Sutter and James Marshall attempted to control the mining territory by demanding rent from the men who wished to mine there, and for a short while they were successful. But as more men showed up to mine and gold was found in locations across the western foothills that extended for hundreds of miles both north and south from the original discovery site, it quickly became understood that all men were free and each had as much … [Read more...]