Hoping to strike gold in the California wilderness
In 2009, the US experienced its worst recession since the Great Depression. But as the value of the dollar fell, the price of gold was approaching a record high, quadrupling in value between 2005 and 2010.
Around the same time, Brooklyn-based photographer Sarina Finkelstein learned that people, often in dire economic straights, were moving into the western wilds in an attempt to make their way as gold miners, just like the "Forty-Niners" of the original Gold Rush of 1849. So, she travelled west to look for them, and documented their lives over the course of four years.
Finkelstein's new book, The New Forty-Niners, documents that new wave of gold seekers she found living on the banks of streams throughout the spectacular landscapes of California.
Produced for the BBC by Colm O'Molloy
29 Aug 2014
- From the section Magazine