This Is the Largest Gold Nugget Ever Found in Colorado
Mining for gold in Colorado in the late 1800s was a difficult way to make a living. Most people who went off searching for gold and silver came back with very little or nothing at all. What kept them coming back for more?
When you look at old maps of mining sites in Colorado, these guys were everywhere. Stories like the tale about 'Tom's Baby' in 1887 showed the next big strike could come from anywhere and happen at any time.
Colorado's Largest Gold Nugget
Tom Groves will live on through Colorado history as the man who stumbled upon the largest gold nugget ever found in the Centennial State. In an area east of Breckenridge known as Farncomb Hill, Groves, and his partner Harry Lytton, unearthed a 13.5-pound gold nugget that is still the largest one ever found in Colorado.
How Did It Get The Nickname 'Tom's Baby'
On the return trip to Breckenridge from Farncomb Hill, Tom Groves wrapped the gold nugget in his jacket to keep his discovery a secret. With the jacket wadded up in his arms, he walked back into town holding it close to his chest. Observers noted he looked like he was swaddling a baby. Once others found out what it was, the nickname stuck.
What Would Tom's Baby Be Worth Today
'Tom's Baby' went missing for several decades and was rediscovered in a vault in Denver owned by the Museum of Natural History. It was missing from 1878 to about 1972. When it was rediscovered in the Denver vaults, it was noted the nugget only weighed about 10 pounds. What happened to the other three pounds? No one seems to know. Take a closer look at 'Tom's Baby' in the photos below.
The Story of ‘Tom’s Baby: The Largest Gold Nugget Ever Found in Colorado
Gallery Credit: Wesley Adams
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Gallery Credit: Wes Adams