The discovery of gold at Gabriel's Gully by Gabriel Read on 25 May 1861 led to the Central Otago goldrush. While gold had been found in Otago before, this rush was beyond expectation, with the population of the gold field rising from almost nothing to around 11,500 within a year, twice that of Dunedin at the time. It also stimulated overseas interest in the new colony.
Gabriel's Gully today is now part of the Gabriels Gully Historic Reserve, and is managed by the Department of Conservation. It has a Heritage New Zealand Category 1 designation.
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