Australian Gold Kangaroos

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Australian Gold Kangaroos

Gainesville Coins offers a wide variety of Perth Mint Gold Kangaroos. We also offer its predecessor, the Gold Nugget. The production of the Gold Nugget/Kangaroo is mostly due the immense amounts of gold that were mined during the Australian Gold Rush.

The Australian Gold Rush

The gold rush began with the enthusiasm of Edward Hargraves. Hargraves had returned to New South Wales (Australia) after the California Gold Rush in hopes of using his learned prospecting skills in New South Wales. Hargraves trusted his instincts and began to prospect in Lewis Pond Creek, near Bathurst. Hargraves' efforts were not in vain. The creek was a significant source for gold. The nearby town was even christened Ophir, after the biblical gold-producing town. This discovery of gold in Australia brought on an influx of immigrants to Australia. Chinese, Americans, British, Cornish, Irish, Scottish, and Germans were travelling to Australia to work as prospectors. This prospecting took place in the 1850s. Later, in the 1890s, the Coolgardie and Kalgoorlie finds were even more substantial. They contributed to the establishment of the Perth Mint.

An Annal of the Gold Kangaroo

This coin series was initially known as the Australian Gold Nugget when introduced in 1986. However, in 1989 the decision was made to replace the inanimate gold nugget with an arguably more interesting Australian national symbol, the Red Kangaroo. From 1989 to 2008 the word “nugget,” was inscribed on the coin’s obverse, and the series was often called the "Kangaroo Nugget." Since 2008, a new reverse Kangaroo design has been introduced each year, and each has been met with anticipation. The design changes also make this gold bullion series popular with both collectors and gold bullion investors.

Kangaroos as Australian Symbols

Kangaroos, native to Australia and its surrounding islands, only came to be the official symbol for Australia until 1908 when it was included in the Australian coat of arms.

The kangaroo was first encountered upon Captain Cook’s first voyage to Australia. It’s rumored that a kangaroo was shot in order to be taken back to Britain as a specimen along with other unusual plants and animals. Because the kangaroo was considered the strangest creature among the specimens, it came to unofficially symbolize the entire Australian continent. One particularly strange account of kangaroos is of the boxing kangaroos in the travelling sideshows. These shows would pit men against a boxing-gloved kangaroo! The boxing kangaroos ultimately became a symbol for the Australian brawn.