In the early days, most gold was gathered in rivers and streambeds by panning, or the much more effective method of sluicing, which uses special boxes placed in the water. Unfortunately, these gold reserves get used up, and much more gold can be extracted if you’re willing to mine deep into the rocks.
Most archaeologists believe that some historical cultures such as the ancient Egyptians began mining gold from rock deposits in very early times, but the process would have been very dangerous in those days, and they probably weren’t able to extract much more than a small gold nugget or two. Panning for Gold
As the centuries have progressed, the tools involved in mining have evolved a lot. Technological advancement has had a huge impact on the amount of gold we can gather, especially in the last few hundred years. There was a time when miners used simple implements like shovels and picks. Eventually explosives became an important tool in the miner’s repertoire, which made it easier to get to certain deposits. This is still a big part of the mining process today.
These days, machines are having a huge impact on mining, including devices like excavators, bulldozers, and giant mechanical drills. Some of these devices are even automated now, which decreases the burden of manpower. Modern miners can get deeper into the earth than ever before, and access gold that was previously unreachable.
The process of finding gold deposits has also become much more sophisticated. Modern miners examine soil chemistry, use satellite imagery, and there are even new discoveries involving bacteria that seem to be more common in the soil above gold deposits.
With demand for coins like Krugerrands and Sovereigns, the economic motivation behind gold mining is just as strong as ever, so you can expect engineers to keep looking for more efficient ways to locate and gather it. New mining technologies will undoubtedly be developed in the future that we can’t even imagine right now, and it will be exciting to see how the process changes in the future.