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FOREWORD On a cold January morning of 1848, James Wilson Marshall picked up two yellow bits of metal, about the size and the shape of split peas, from the tail-race of the sawmill he was building on the South Fork of the American River, some forty-five miles northeast of Sutter's Fort, now Sacramento City. These two yellow pellets proved to be gold; and soon it was discovered that all the region thereabouts was thickly sown with shining... more...