This image shows a miner in long, over-the-knee, Blucher boots stirring up the muddy washdirt with a spade to encourage the heavy particles of gold to sink to the bottom of the puddler. Following this process, the majority of the washdirt can be discarded, leaving the gold-bearing mix to be carefully panned to reveal the small nuggets and gold dust.


Samuel Thomas Gill, watercolour, 1869


Accession number: H86.7


From the State Library of Victoria's Picture Collection.


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Prospecting methods