| "Gold! Gold! Gold from the American River!"
- Samuel Brannan, running through the streets of San Francisco waving a bottle of gold dust in the air, 184814
| "California presented to people a new model for the American dream—one where the emphasis was on the ability to take risks, the willingness to gamble on the future."15
- Historian H.W. Brands
| "'Genocide' is a word I hesitate to use, but what happens in California is very close to genocide."
- Historian Richard White, on the Gold Rush's effects on California's Indians16