Wealth over time

Wealth is accumulated over time for most people. The trick is to stick with some fundamentals, keep your eye on the ball, and involve professionals. Many of us, however, imagine ourselves striking it rich in one moment, making the big score and eliminating worry.

Here’s a terrific image from our historical collection. It’s an ambrotype, and dates approximately to the late 1850s, about the time Wells Fargo opened for business. The man holds a good sized nugget of ore, and the couple seems satisfied. They look to have hit it big, and are celebrating with some fine clothes and a portrait. Maybe they’ll book passage back East and buy that farm they’ve dreamed of. Whatever the reality of the moment, we are able 160-plus years later to participate in in, to actually celebrate it with them. We get it, which defies the great amount of time between us and that moment.

Ambrotypes were a photographic technology of the 1850s. I can’t date it any closer than that; any history sleuths out there who can find clues to date it more accurately?

California Gold Rush portrait, ca. late-1850s. (Wells Fargo historical collection)

California Gold Rush portrait, ca. late-1850s. (Wells Fargo historical collection)

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Guided By History

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