Date of Award


Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Degree Name

B.A. in Geography

Organizational Unit

College of Natural Science and Mathematics, Geography and the Environment

First Advisor

Matthew Taylor

Second Advisor

Michelle Moran-Taylor


Nicaragua, California gold rush, Cartography, Trans-oceanic routes, Geography


The California Gold Rush played a central role in shaping American history. However, descriptions of this event often overlook its reach within international territory. Exposing this interconnectedness addresses the lack of diversity in historical archives. Through cartography and first hand accounts, this project unpacks the various narratives and discourses of the journey from the U.S. Eastern Seaboard to the West Coast via the Nicaragua Interoceanic route during the mid 19th century. By illustrating how this pivotal time drew thousands of Americans in their quest to explore California’s gold fields, this project shows how and why many opted to embark on the passage via Nicaragua. While representations of historical events cannot always capture every experience, highlighting the various voices often absent in past accounts provides a fuller and more nuanced picture of this journey.

Copyright Date


Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

All Rights Reserved
All Rights Reserved.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Christine Stadnik-Poteroba


Received from author

File Format



English (eng)

File Size

41.5 MB

Supplementary File Description

Zip archive contains:

1) The Multivocality of the California Gold Rush: The Inter-Oceanic Route via Nicaragua

  • File Format: image/png
  • Language: English (eng)
  • Extent: 4032 x 3456 px
  • File Size: 12.2 MB

2) Voices of the Alternative Trans-Oceanic Routes: Panama and Cape Horn: Stories from the California Gold Rush

  • File Format: application/pdf, ArcGIS Story Map (linked)
  • Language: English (eng)
  • Extent: 13 pgs
  • File Size: 13.1 MB

3) Trans-Nicaraguan Route: Journey to Reach the California Gold Rush

  • File Format: application/pdf, ArcGIS Story Map (linked)
  • Language: English (eng)
  • Extent: 14 pgs
  • File Size: 17.0 MB


Geography, Cartography