Welcome to the NC Gold Foundation
The North Carolina Gold Foundation was formed to promote, educate, preserve and celebrate the state's gold heritage.
We're proud of our heritage and our place in history!
Did you know? Gold was found first in North Carolina?
Did you know? You can visit the sites where miners formed the first ever "gold rush"?
Did you know? There is still gold in those hills, and you can still pan for it!
Take a look through this site to find out much more about the living history of North Carolina Gold.
The North Carolina Gold Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
"First In Gold" License Plates
Be one of the first to display "First in Gold" on your vehicle!
The NC Gold foundation are currently inviting fellow NC Gold lovers to join us in proudly displaying their pride with a beautiful NC License Plate showing the historic gold panning of the 1800's, with with the words "First in Gold" emblazoned across the top.
The license plate costs as little as $20 per year on top of your regular tag fees.
Currently we are looking for the first 300 people to sign up for the new license plate. Once this figure has been reached, the DoT will create the license plates, and later on make them freely available in every tag office across the USA.
Where you lead, others will follow... Be the first to own "First in Gold"
How to be one of the first...
Simply download and complete the application form found here, and once we have reached the amount of applications necessary we will pass them on to the DoT for completion.
If you have any further questions, please do contact us.
Thanks for supporting our heritage!
Visit Gold Sites in North Carolina
Bechtler Mint Site Historic ParkIn 1832, Christopher Bechtler of Rutherfordton minted the country's first one dollar gold coin (17 years before the U.S. mint). During the mid-1800s, the Bechtlers minted more than $2.24 million in gold coins. Explore the original location of the Bechtler mint and mine shaft.
The site is a small park with a short loop walking trail with information boards that tell the story of local gold mining.
Catawba River GreenwaySilver Creek, which empties into the Catawba River, has been the source of many gold discoveries during the last 200 years. The Morganton Greenway System includes the Catawba River Greenway and the Freedom Trail Greenway and currently has five pedestrian access points with parking.
Look for the gold panning signs, and follow the rules - the greenway is a multi-purpose area.
Gold HillEnjoy a nostalgic change of pace and step back in time as you stroll along the wood sidewalks of this restored nineteenth century Gold Mining boom town.
With its first gold discovery in 1824, Gold Hill is considered one of today's most charming, historic small towns in North Carolina. Home to a quaint shopping village, a 70 acre park with beautiful scenery, it is quite easy to get lost in time as you discover all there is to see here.
Gold Hill offers an 'Au-some' experience celebrating the gilded age of gold discovery in North Carolina.
Jims, Gems and GoldJims, Gems and Gold LLC. brings the thrill of panning for genuine gemstones and gold to Moore County, North Carolina. Whether you come as a family, birthday party or group, Jims, Gems and Gold is the perfect choice for a day of fun. Both young and old will enjoy the experience and wonder of finding their own treasures.
Lucky Strike Gold MineThe Lucky Strike is a gold and gem mine with a campground that is committed to making sure our visitors have a memorable outing. You can take a step back in time to the days of yesteryear by taking a pan or sluice box into the stream.
Experience the thrill of that golden gleam in your pan that only finding your first flake of gold can give. It immediately inflicts you with what the old timers called gold fever. Beware; when you see that first glint of gold in your pan you will be hooked! Gold fever has no cure but to hunt for more gold.
We also have Gold Panning at the flume line with local ore from the Second Broad River. When you get tired or hungry you can visit the Miners Diner , located next to the covered panning area and have a delicious Bonanza burger or Klondike dog with a frosty glass of Sluice Juice.
Mountain Creek Gold MineWe are located in New London NC off of HWY 52 North. We are open 7 days a week from 8am to 5pm. Here there are different ways of prospecting for gold such as panning, dredging, highbanking & sluicing.
We also have campsites for rent, you can pitch a tent or stay in a camper/cabin.
Reed Gold MineReed Gold Mine is the site of the first documented gold find in the United States. From this discovery, gold mining spread gradually to nearby counties and eventually into other southern states.
Today, portions of the underground tunnels at the Reed mine have been restored for guided tours. A visitor center contains exhibits of gold and historical mining equipment. An orientation film highlights the first gold discovery, and tours of a restored ore-crushing stamp mill are offered. A picnic area is available, and you can try your hand at gold panning. Trails wind through the historic mining area, too.
Thermal City Gold Mine offers a unique experience hosted by people who are real prospectors! We are dedicated to keeping the tradition and history of Gold Mining in North Carolina alive. Anyone who wants to pan or prospect for gold is welcome. We enjoy teaching and talking about mining!
We'd love to hear from you!
You can contact us by 'snail mail' at the following address:
NC Gold Foundation, Inc. P.O. Box 2786 Marion, NC. 28752
Or use the form below to contact us via email. we will do our very best to get back to you within one business day.