Gold and minor platinum have been recovered from black sand deposits on the beaches south of Crescent City, Del Norte County, beginning in the 1850s. Most of it was recovered by small-scale methods. Several large-scale operations were attempted in the 1890s and again in 1913-14 but were unsuccessful. As in other beach deposits along the ocean, the gold-bearing black sands were deposited by shore currents and wave action. Most of the gold here was probably derived from the Smith River, which empties into the ocean a few miles to the north, and the Klamath River, a few miles to the south.
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