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Brazilian Gold Rush

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Brazilian Gold Rush
Ouro Preto November 2009-7.jpg
Ouro Preto - Praça Tiradentes in southeastern Brazil where the Brazilian Gold Rush began in 1690s
DateLate 17th-late 19th century
LocationOuro Preto, Minas Gerais, Portuguese colony of Brazil, Portuguese Empire
CauseGold discovered by the bandeirantes in the mountains of Minas Gerais
Participants400,000 Portuguese miners
Brazilian miners
British miners
Other European miners
500,000 African slaves
OutcomeCreated the world's longest gold rush period and the largest gold mines in South America


The Brazilian Gold Rush was a gold rush that started in the 1690s, in the then Portuguese colony of Brazil in the Portuguese Empire. The gold rush opened up the major gold-producing area of Ouro Preto (Portuguese for black gold), then the aptly named Vila Rica ("Rich Town").[1] Eventually, the Brazilian Gold Rush created the world's longest gold rush period and the largest gold mines in South America.

The rush began when bandeirantes discovered large gold deposits in the mountains of Minas Gerais.[2] The bandeirantes were adventurers who organized themselves into small groups to explore the interior of Brazil. Many bandeirantes were of mixed indigenous and European background who adopted the ways of the natives, which permitted them to survive in the interior rainforest. While the bandeirantes searched for indigenous captives, they also searched for mineral wealth, which led to the gold being discovered.

More than 400,000 Portuguese and half a million African slaves came to the gold region to mine. Many people abandoned the sugar plantations and towns in the northeast coast to go to the gold region. By 1725, half the population of Brazil was living in southeastern Brazil.

Officially, 850 tons of gold were sent to Portugal in the 18th century. Other gold circulated illegally, and still other gold remained in the colony to adorn churches and for other uses.[3]

The municipality became the most populous city of Latin America, counting on about 40 thousand people in 1730 and, decades after, 80 thousand. At that time, the population of New York was less than half of that number of inhabitants and the population of São Paulo did not surpass 8 thousand.[4]

Minas Gerais was the gold mining center of Brazil. Slave labor was generally used for the workforce.[5] The discovery of gold in the area caused a huge influx of European immigrants and the government decided to bring in bureaucrats from Portugal to control operations. They set up numerous bureaucracies, often with conflicting duties and jurisdictions. The officials generally proved unequal to the task of controlling this highly lucrative industry.[6] In 1830, the St. John d'el Rey Mining Company, controlled by the British, opened the largest gold mine in Latin America. The British brought in modern management techniques and engineering expertise. Located in Nova Lima, the mine produced ore for 125 years.[7]

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Have you ever imagined a world without color? Picture Europe in the first years of the 1500s. It was beige. Boring, bland. "Beige is hardly even a color", says Jeff Goldblum in the launching of the iMac commercial. Hi, I am Beia Carvalho, a Brazilian futurist lecturer and here I am auditioning to speak about the DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION IN THE BRAZILIAN AGRIBUSINESS at SXSW 2019. So, what Brazil has to do with bringing color to the world? If you think color as music, Carnival, bikinis and caipirinhas, yes we make the world much more colourful. But ... let's go back to the beige world of the 1500s. The first Portuguese ships that arrived in Brazil 8 years after Columbus discovered America went back to Portugal, not full of gold, but full of a wood log named Pau-Brasil from which Brazil was named after. The Brazil Wood had great commercial value, not because you could eat it like the black pepper and the cinnamon brought from India but because this tree was transformed into a deep vibrant striking red dye to the great joy of Court nobles, the Clergy and the privileged who could afford to stroll around Europe in radiant red clothing. My talk will rapidly pass through all Brazilian economic cycles from our first commodity for export, the Brazil Wood followed by rubber, sugar cane, cocoa, coffee up to the amazing record of 117 million tons of soybeans the world record harvest, in 2018. And how is it possible? How did we overcome US as the largest soybean producer? Well, many reasons, one of them being the Digital Transformation. The second, is that Brazil still has 12% more area to expand the agribusiness while using today only 8% of its arable lands. Note that US and Europe are now using their maximum farmlands. These 2 reasons alone are of great value to anyone, anywhere interested in technological advances and innovation to feed a potential population of 10 billion people by 2050. That means, almost 3 more billion humans to be fed in only 30 years from now. The Smart Farm is now controlled by iPhone. It has Drones using AI to spray pesticides, not in the whole farm but only in the constricted area where plagues attacked. The Smart Farm has tractors, soil and livestock powered with IoT. And cloud computing technology to compensate for human errors. There is even a robot-tongue that can taste coffee and was bought by Nespresso to make your ristretto in Austin taste exactly like it tastes in Shanghai, London or here in Brazil. As we speak, there are some 800 AgTechs Startups in Brazil fighting for a piece of this action and 70% of them were founded in the last 2 years Are you are willing to take a piece of the action to feed the world population? Or maybe just stop the use of pesticides, transgenic seeds and female hormones used today to enhance crops, milk and beef production? If you are ready I am looking forward to meeting you in Austin and cheering my approval to speak at the SXSW over a few caipirinhas.

External links

See also

References

  1. ^ C. R. Boxer, "Brazilian Gold and British Traders in the First Half of the Eighteenth Century," Hispanic American Historical Review (1969) 49#3 pp. 454-472 in JSTOR
  2. ^ "Ouro Preto." The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2008. Encyclopedia.com. 27 Apr. 2009
  3. ^ "Ouro Preto Ouro Preto". Archived from the original on 2016-03-10. Retrieved 2016-09-15.
  4. ^ Ouro Preto
  5. ^ Kathleen J. Higgins, Licentious Liberty in a Brazilian Gold-Mining Region: Slavery, Gender & Social Control in Eighteenth-Century Sabara, Minas Gerais (1999)
  6. ^ A. J. R. Russell-Wood, "Local Government in Portuguese America. A Study of Cultural Divergence," Comparative Studies in Society & History (1974) 16#2 pp 187-231.
  7. ^ Marshall C. Eakin, British Enterprise in Brazil: The St. John d'el Rey Mining Company & the Morro Velho Gold Mine, 1830-1960 (1990)
This page was last edited on 12 October 2019, at 04:34
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