The first traces of gold
The tiny chips of gold found in Nulkkamukka, along the Ivalojoki river in 1868 started the first gold rush in Finland. The discovery was made by the expedition led by Mr. Johan Konrad Lihr, assisting manager of the Mint, that was sent searching for gold in the northern parts of the country.
Kultalan Kruunun Stationi, an outpost for government officers for keeping order in the gold field was built on the bank of Ivalojoki. The officers granted claim licenses and collected taxes for all the gold discovered. Kruunun Stationi was a general meeting place for gold prospectors in the wilderness with a bakery, saloon and public house.
The first years of the rush were the most profitable, totalling up to 56 kilos per summer. The rush dwindled in a few years and prospecting continued on the tributaries of the Ivalojoki river, e.g. Sotajoki and Palsinoja. Even nowadays you can see gold prospecting camps along these rivers.