A major change in the state's fortunes occurred in the 1880s when [[gold]] was discovered and prospectors by the tens of thousands swarmed across the land in a desperate attempt to discover new goldfields. [[Paddy Hannan]]'s discovery at [[Kalgoorlie]], and the early discoveries at [[Coolgardie]], sparked true [[Gold rush|gold fever]]. In 1891 the rush to the Murchison goldfields began when [[Tom Cue]] discovered gold at the [[Cue, Western Australia|town]] which now bears his name. In the years that followed dozens of [[gold town]]s - Day Dawn, Nannine, [[Peak Hill, Western Australia|]], Garden Gully, Dead Finish, Pinnicles, Austin Island and Austin Mainland - flourished only to be abandoned when the seams were exhausted and the gold fever moved on.
The first gold rush occurred in 1885 when discovered alluvial gold in the Kimberley area. Further alluvial finds occurred across the state during the five years with finds in [[Marble Bar]], [[Southern Cross, Western Australia|]] and [[Yalgoo, Western Australia|]]. From these discoveries the prospectors moved further a field. In 1892 by William Ford and Arthur Bayley set off a [[gold rush]] when they discovered gold in Coolgardie this would shortly expand to Kalgoorlie in 1893 and bring the state out of many years of economic doldrums.