The other day I (or, more accurately, the 5-year-old, who likes to go through the bookshelves) found a This Day in Oregon book a friend gave me a few years back. This nifty little volume is full of interesting tidbits, but I was particularly struck by the entry for August 1, two days ago.
"The schooner, Honolulu, docked on this day in 1848 in Portland. After quickly purchasing all the picks and shovels available in the town's two hardware stores, the ship's captain announced that gold had been discovered in California. Two thirds of Oregon's male population, including the future governor of California, left to join the rush, but not before buying out the captain's supply of implements at several times the original price."
Those Californians... they've been pushing up prices since the 1840s. ;-)
Source: James Cloutier, This Day in Oregon: Daybook of Oregon History Featuring Hugh Wetshoe (Eugene: Image West Press, 1982).