GOLD PANNING . . . AN INTERESTING HOBBY-
Putnam County Maintenance Director, John Fowler, visited the afterschool program this week to share information about panning for gold. Students learned about the best locations where gold deposits may be found in the United States and how those deposits might come to be found in those locations.
Students also learned the difference between panners and miners and discussed a bit about the history of gold mining and the California gold rush. Mr. Fowler brought samples of “fools” gold as well as a sample of the “real” thing. He also shared that he has done the majority of his panning just outside of Denver, Colorado. After demonstrating the correct method of gold panning each student had the opportunity to get a feel for sloshing material in a pan--a method to separate the black sand and gold from rock, dirt and debris.
According to Mr. Fowler, the closest location for gold in this area is in Schuyler County as glacial activity years ago deposited small flakes of lower quality gold in this area. So, the next time you are near the Chariton River you might want to look where you step—you just might be walking on gold.