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Gold was discovered in Australia as early as the 1820s. Surveyor James McBrien reported finding gold at the Fish River near Bathurst, NSW in 1823, while Polish explorer Paul Strzelecki found gold near Hartley Vale in 1839. All these discoveries were kept secret, for fear of sparking off unrest among the convicts. When Reverend WB Clark found gold near Lithgow in 1941, he was requested by Governor Gipps to keep quiet about it. Gipps is reported to have said, "Put it away, Mr Clarke, or we will all have our throats cut!" In addition, land owners did not want their workers leaving in droves to find gold.

This changed when the Californian gold rushes started, and Australians began leaving the country in the hopes of striking gold in America. The New South Wales government began to encourage gold finds, offering a reward for the discovery of payable gold. Gold was first officially discovered in Australia in 1851, not far from Bathurst, New South Wales. Edward Hargraves had carefully studied the geology of the area and, convinced that it was similar to that of the California goldfields, from where he had just returned, went prospecting. He enlisted the assistance of John Lister, a man who had already found gold in the region. Lister led Hargraves directly to where gold was found, at Summerhill Creek, at a site which Hargraves named "Ophir". Hargraves has been credited with the discovery ever since, even though, by rights, credit should go to Lister.

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13y ago
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11y ago

Gold was first discovered in New South Wales on 15 February 1823, at Fish River in the Bathurst area by Surveyor James McBrien. There are several records of other people finding gold. Polish explorer Paul Strzelecki found gold near Hartley Vale in 1839. Reverend WB Clark found gold near Lithgow in 1941.

However, these early discoveries were kept secret, for fear of sparking off unrest among the convicts. As more people left the Australian colonies to join the gold rush in California, the government started to encourage the discovery of payable gold in Australia.

Payable gold was first "officially" discovered in Australia in 1851, not far from Bathurst, New South Wales. The New South Wales government made the official announcement of the discovery of gold on 22 May 1851.

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13y ago

Although there were minor reports of gold earlier, the first official, reported discovery of gold in South Australia was in January 1846, near Castambul.

The next major discovery was in 1849 near the South Para River.

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12y ago

The first gold in Victoria was found in Clunes on 11 June 1851, by James Esmond. Meanwhile, at almost the same time, gold was also discovered at Anderson's Creek, near Warrandyte, by Louis Michel, a publican from Melbourne.

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7y ago

1839 Victorian Alps

1840 Strahlodden Victoria

1846 Montecue South Australia

1849 Glenmona Victoria

There were many early discoveries not reported by convicts, shepherds and farmers who avoided publicity.

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14y ago

The first payable gold was officially discovered in Australia in 1851, not far from Bathurst, New South Wales. More specifically, gold was found at Summerhill Creek, at a site which Hargraves named "Ophir".

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15y ago

Gold was first officially found in New South Wales, but there are suggestions tht the first non-payable gold was actually found in South Australia.

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7y ago

Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia.

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6y ago

In May 1851 after prospector Edward Hargraves claimed he discovered payable gold at Ophir near Orange.

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Q: When was gold found in South Australia?
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