Sought after since the beginning of recorded history, gold remains a highly
valued metal, reaching record highs recently, climbing over 135% in value in the
past year alone. The recent rise in the price of gold comes just as annual
worldwide mine production has decreased - down by nearly 8% since 2001. In human
history, only 161,000 tons of gold have been mined - more than half of that
extracted in just the past 50 years. Collected here are a handful of recent
photographs of people searching for, mining, rediscovering, celebrating, buying
and selling gold.