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1803 - Gold Fever

French and Spanish explorers who find gold or other riches must give their bounty to the rulers of their home countries. But when Americans find valuables, what they find belongs to the property's owner, not the government. Not far from where Conrad Reed discovered a 17-pound gold nugget four years earlier, other large rocks containing gold are found. They weigh from eight pounds up to 16 -- but the biggest is 28 pounds. Other North Carolinians will become wealthy when they discover gold, and much of the precious metal will come from Mecklenburg County.