"Is there gold in them thar plains?"
Around 121 years ago this month, believe it or not, there was a gold rush in the Dorchester area.
The Oct. 7, 1895 edition of The New York Times reported: "A raging gold fever has settled down on this section of country over a startling discovery" of gold just north of Dorchester and south of Milford on the Blue River.
Back then, it was a discovery that caught the attention of gold prospectors from as far away as Denver.
According to The Times, the primary source of speculation was a Blue River area gravel pit a few miles Milford, which was said to be "rich in gold dust."
The gravel pit had been used by Burlington Railway in the construction and upgrade of its rail system.
The New York Times noted that there was "great excitement in the vicinity of the reputed find" and that speculation was active.
See The New York Times' 1895 article by clicking here.
Feel like looking for gold in Nebraska?
Gold in Nebraska comes from two primary sources, according to the experts. To the west, rivers draining rich gold ground in Colorado and Wyoming enter the state, carrying small amounts of very fine gold particles. To the east, receding glaciers that once covered much of the Midwest deposited small amounts of gold, which included a small part of Nebraska in the far eastern edge of the state. Gold has reportedly been found in the Little and Big Nemaha Rivers, and could likely be found in many of the tributaries as well. The Blue River (including the fork just north of Dorchester) and Missouri Rivers are also worth trying, the experts say.
If panning for gold or searching sandbars on a river isn't your thing, maybe search these sites in Nebraska for hidden gold treasures. Be sure to pay special attention to old outhouses!