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Silver Rush Series: Historical Facts, Fictions, and Tidbits

I see the Silver Rush series as having two “cycles” (at least, so far). The first cycle, which encompasses the first five books (all the “-ies” rhyming titles: Silver LiesIron TiesLeaden SkiesMercury’s Rise, and What Gold Buys), is set in Colorado, 1879–1880. The location is primarily the silver-mining boomtown of Leadville, but I also wander off into territory around Pikes Peak, including Manitou, and there is even a touch of Denver and Colorado Springs. After What Gold Buys, my protagonist, Inez Stannert, heads off to California and the second cycle of the series begins. This cycle, which so far has two books (with “music-themed” titles: A Dying Note and Mortal Music), takes place in San Francisco, California, starting in late 1881. Since setting is a very important element to me, the history and tidbits in the links below tend to focus on what was happening in these two locations. Of course, there’s general information about the times that is not tied to a particular place, so those are listed separately below.

General History

Money Money (A dollar in 1880 is equivalent to how much now?)
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A great site for sussing out clues to date images
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Clothes and hair styles, by the decade
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Mustaches of the nineteenth century
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Spectacles! (as in glasses)
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Western slang and lingo
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Piano Wires Through the Centuries (NBC News article)
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Whiskey of the Old West (that’s whiskey with an “e”)
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56 Victorian Slang Terms
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Victorian mourning and funeral customs (1890s)
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Teatime! (high, low, and little)
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Leadville’s fascinating past

An overview of Leadville’s history with some great photos
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Leadville historic walking tour
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New Year’s Eve in 1878
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1880: A new decade begins
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Letters: Windows to the past (Part 1)
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Letters: Windows to the past (Part 2)
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Letters: Windows to the past (Part 3)
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The well-dressed winter traveler to Leadville (1879)
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The Leadville craze, circa 1879
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Spectator sports in 1880 Leadville
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San Francisco: her history, places, and people

FoundSF: A great site about anything you want to know about San Francisco
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An illustrated history of the Palace Hotel
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A quick overview of Chinatown
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1885 Map of Chinatown
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History of the Cliff House
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Newspaper snippets and photos re: the Cliff House
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San Francisco’s Alleys of “Ill Repute”
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Photos of 19th-century Tenderloin district
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Theater in 19th-century San Francisco
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Wade’s Opera House / the Grand Opera House
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The history of opera in San Francisco
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