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“Many young men who have come out full of high anticipation have paid the penalty of their lives…You wrote that Sylvanus had been somewhat afflicted with the Gold Fever. Tell him should he or had he come out he might (like some others) when arriving in S.F. been so sick as to take a Pistol and shoot himself. I have heard several cases of that kind.…”

A discouraged gold seeker to his mother, February, 1851 .