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Gold could become official state mineral through new bill

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- North Carolina's rich gold history could be
honored with legislation by the General Assembly.

The Senate voted Monday night to make gold the official state
mineral. Bill sponsor Sen. Harry Brown of Onslow County said the
idea came from fourth-graders in his district.

The North Carolina Geological Survey's web site says the first
authenticated discovery of gold in the United States occurred in
North Carolina in 1799. It was the only gold-producing state in the
early 1800's and a leading producer until gold was discovered in
California in 1848. A Charlotte mint coined gold for the federal
government until the start of the Civil War.

The bill was approved 46-4 and now goes to the Senate.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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