Step Back in Time at Gold Rush Days

Step Back in Time at Gold Rush Days

Julian Gold Rush Days, set for April 7 and 8, will mark the historic moment when gold was discovered in this mountain community.

Visitors are invited to learn about the town’s history while being entertained with gold panning, tomahawk throwing demonstrations, hayrides, archery, candle dipping, children’s pioneer games and more.


It's entertainment for the whole family!

Julian Gold Rush Days is a great opportunity to turn back the clock and experience the Julian of early days.

The celebration commemorates the events of the winter of 1869, when former slave Fred Coleman discovered gold in a small creek just outside of Julian. Within weeks of that discovery, more than 800 prospectors from all over the country were headed to Julian in search of gold, setting off a frenzy that became San Diego County’s own Gold Rush.

The first producing gold mine, the Washington Mine, was established in February 1870. Within days, more than 40 other claims were registered.

The Gold Rush lasted off and on for about 30 years, producing almost $2 million in gold — about $150 million in today’s market.

While the nearby gold mining towns of Banner City, Branson City, Cuyamaca City and Eastwood disappeared over time, Julian continued to thrive after the end of its mining days with the production of a new “gold” — apples.

Sponsored by the Julian Chamber of Commerce, the Gold Rush Days celebration will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Julian Farm, operated by the Julian Mining Company at 4381 Highway 78, three miles west of Julian’s Main Street.

The site is an old-fashioned mining camp, rich in history and authenticity. Visit or call the Chamber at 760-765-1857.

“Julian Gold Rush Days is a great opportunity to turn back the clock and give visitors an idea of what Julian was like in its early days,” says Tracy Turner, of the Julian Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s entertainment for the whole family!”

By Angela McLaughlin, Staff Writer
Photographs by Angela McLaughlin