Webcast on Discovering Gold at Reed Gold Mine Sept. 18

MIDLAND, NC August 20, 2014 – Thousands of miners flocked to the nation’s first documented gold find, not in the hills of California, but in the piedmont of North Carolina. In 1799, a shiny and heavy rock found by little Conrad Reed and used for a doorstop was, in reality, a 17-pound gold nugget. Once identified, the news spread and the Carolina Gold Rush was on.

Reed Creek Gold - Kids on Tour

Reed Creek Gold
Kids on Tour


The Reed farm is now the popular Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site where visitors can still pan for gold through October. A webcast at the site Sept. 18 at 10:30 a.m. will explore the history of gold mining in North Carolina, and anyone can sign up to view the webcast at http://www.ncdcr.gov/DCRTV


The Department of Cultural Resources staff will take questions during the live webcast.


Conrad Reed’s gold rock was used as a doorstop until a jeweler’s examination in 1802 revealed it to be gold. The jeweler paid $3.50 for the rock, 1/10th of one percent of its worth. Reed and his partners began working the surface in 1803. By 1824, the miners had recovered $100,000 worth of gold.

During the webcast, Site Manager Larry Neal will lead a tour of the underground mine, the 1890s stamp mill and the millhouse. The stamp mill separated gold from quartz and other metals. Initially, mining was done in Little Meadow stream, but the discovery that gold also existed within the quartz rock led to mining underground in 1832. The estimated value of gold from the mine reached over $1 million a year. Webcast participants will learn about mining methods and the impact of gold in North Carolina. The mine ceased operations in 1912.

For additional information on the webcast, please call (919) 807-7289 or visit http://www.ncdcr.gov/DCRTV. The program is part of a series organized by the Connecting to Collections Project (C2C) of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.

A federal grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services for the Connecting to Collections Initiative makes this program possible. The N.C. Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, also supports Connecting to Collections programs. Since 2010, Cultural Resources has led the C2C project to guide North Carolina archives, museums, libraries and historic sites with disaster preparedness, preservation of collections and disaster recovery.


Reed Gold Mine is within the Division of State Historic Sites within the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources. For additional information on the Reed Gold Mine, please call (704) 721-4653.


About the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources 

The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources (NCDCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s cultural resources to build the social, cultural and economic future of North Carolina. Led by Secretary Susan Kluttz, NCDCR’s mission is to enrich lives and communities by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history and libraries in North Carolina that will spark creativity, stimulate learning, preserve the state’s history and promote the creative economy. NCDCR was the first state organization in the nation to include all agencies for arts and culture under one umbrella. 
Through arts efforts led by the N.C. Arts Council, the N.C. Symphony and the N.C. Museum of Art, NCDCR offers the opportunity for enriching arts education for young and old alike and spurring the economic stimulus engine for our state’s communities. NCDCR’s Divisions of Archives and Records, Historical Resources, State Historic Sites and State History Museums preserve, document and interpret North Carolina’s rich cultural heritage to offer experiences of learning and reflection. NCDCR’s State Library of North Carolina is the principal library of state government and builds the capacity of all libraries in our state to develop and to offer access to educational resources through traditional and online collections including genealogy and resources for people who are blind and have physical disabilities.  
NCDCR annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council and the State Archives. NCDCR champions our state’s creative industry that accounts for more than 300,000 jobs and generates nearly $18.5 billion in revenues. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit www.ncdcr.gov.