If you’ve been around the sun a time or two, you’ve probably heard someone use the phrase “gold standard” when referencing how trustworthy or valuable something is. This phrase is popular because gold has been a measurement of worth for centuries and has shaped multiple cultures and economies.
Learning about the worth and history of gold bars can give you a little more appreciation for the currency in your pocket and any gold you may have in your possession.
Let’s uncover the history and value of gold bars:
What Is an Ingot?
When you picture gold, many images might come to mind, with one of them being a bar of gold. This type of gold is known as an ingot or bullion. This lump of gold is one that has been meticulously refined by a trained gold bar producer.
Gold bars have to be made with precision to meet the requirements necessary for bar production. These bars get the name Ingot from the process of pouring liquid gold into a mold. The word comes from Old English roots meaning “to pour in.”
Who Produces Gold Ingots?
Where do these gold bars come from? The main producers of gold ingots are government mints and private companies. At these establishments, a certified bar producer pours the liquid gold into the mold. Regardless of who makes the gold, they must follow precise procedures when making gold bars.
How To Determine the Price of a Gold Bar
As you might have heard, the price of gold fluctuates constantly. The worth of a gold ingot is dependent on the current price of gold and the size and content of the gold bar.
To find a gold ingot’s price, you’ll need to multiply its gold content by the current market price of gold. For example, if a bar contains 100 ounces of gold, and the current price is $1,762 per ounce, that bar would be worth $176,200.
The History of Gold Bullions
When did gold bars first appear on the scene? There are many fascinating aspects to gold’s history, starting with its use as currency in many civilizations.
Let’s explore how gold has been used over time and what it has been worth in the past.
They Controlled the Worth of Currency
In Ancient Mesopotamia, gold bars were actually used as currency. Amazingly, gold’s use as a currency was largely unregulated until the 1700s, when precious metal became more formally regulated as a system.
Years afterward, many types of currency were based on the worth of gold, known as the gold standard. Although most currencies are now regulated by their government rather than gold, it’s fascinating to see how gold impacted currency for so much of history.
What Have Gold Bars Been Worth in the Past?
The current price for an ounce of gold is around 1700 dollars. Have you ever been curious about what gold has been worth in previous years?
Here’s a look at the history of the worth of gold over the past 200 years:
- 1793: The price of gold during this time was $19.39. For context, 20 dollars at that time would have the purchasing power of $405 today.
- 1893: Surprisingly, 100 years later, the price of gold had not risen much and was only $20.67.
- 1943: 50 years later, the price was $36.50 per ounce.
- 1970-1980: During this time, the price of gold jumped from $38.90 to $594, making gold a valuable investment.
- 2000-2010: The next time gold prices would jump would be in the 2000s, going from $272 to over 1,400 dollars.
- 2010-Present: In the past decade or so, gold has maintained a range of around $1,500.
How Is a Gold Ingot Bar Made?
There are several steps to creating a gold ingot.
Here’s a breakdown of the process from mining to pressing:
The Mining Process
The first step of gold mining is to separate the gold from the deposits surrounding it underground. After gold is mined, someone must process it to extract any remaining sediment. Then, the gold is reduced to a sand consistency to sift away impurities.
After the gold has been mined and purified, it must be refined. To do this, gold producers apply a series of chemicals, pressure, and high temperatures, allowing it to become purified in a furnace. Following the refining process, the gold must undergo testing to ensure its purity. It must be 99.9% pure gold to meet qualifications.
After the gold is heated in the furnace to remove impurities and tested for quality, it cools down. Then, it is reheated into liquid gold so that a gold producer can pour it into a mold.
Once it molds into the classic bar shape, the result is an ingot. If you’re interested in owning gold, you can purchase gold ingots legally — but always do your research.
Is Gold Jewelry Worth Anything?
Let’s say you’re interested in owning gold from an investment standpoint. You might wonder if the hand-me-down gold jewelry you received from your uncle is worth anything today. The worth of gold jewelry depends on several factors.
Let’s talk about them:
Types of Gold Jewelry
When it comes to gold jewelry, different pieces can look almost identical while being worth vastly different amounts. Different types of gold jewelry can dictate whether a piece is worth a lot or nothing at all.
- Pure gold: This type of gold is the most valuable and the rarest type. People tend not to wear pure gold because it is softer than gold combined with alloy metals.
- Gold-filled: This type of jewelry can contain a thick layer of gold fused to a sturdy base metal.
- Gold-plated: This gold variety is similar to gold-filled jewelry, but it contains a thinner layer of gold fused to a base metal.
Whether you have pure gold, plated gold, or gold-filled jewelry, the karat amount makes a difference, too. Karats refer to the amount of gold present in a piece of gold. The most valuable variety of gold is pure 24k gold since it has no base metal and no alloys mixed with it. 18 karat gold would be worth a little less, and so on.
If you have a piece of heirloom jewelry that might be worth something, there’s an easy way to find out. You can search the gold jewelry in question for a hallmark. A hallmark is a stamp that denotes quality on a piece of jewelry. It shows that a piece of gold has met regulations and is authentic.
Here are common hallmarks to look for. Each marking corresponds with the percentage of gold present:
- 999: This is 24k gold.
- 750: This marking refers to 18k gold.
- 585: A piece of jewelry with this hallmark is 14k gold.
- 375: This marking indicates 10k gold.
The Best Trendy Gold Jewelry From CRAFTD
Silver and gold jewelry can look good on anyone. But let’s face it. Some people were made for gold jewelry. If you’re the kind of person who loves accenting your apparel with gold chains, earrings, and other accessories, we’re here to help.
Here are a few of our favorite pieces of CRAFTD jewelry you can sport in 18-karat plated gold:
The CRAFTD Crucifix Pendant
Wearing pendants is the perfect way to level up your jewelry game if you already wear chains. The Crucifix pendant is a safe bet, too. It’s been a famous icon in men’s jewelry for decades, and it’s been a historical symbol for far longer.
Wear this piece with your favorite chains to pay respect to your religious roots, or wear it because it looks fresh as hell. It’s a go-to piece in gold or silver.
The CRAFTD Rope Chain
Let’s say you already have a few reliable chains you wear often. It might be time to add a new chain to the rotation.
Our Rope chain is the perfect addition to any jewelry collection. It’s subtle enough to wear solo, so you never have to take it off. Wear it to the office or in the bedroom. It looks killer no matter what.
The CRAFTD Cuban Bracelet
It’s all in the details. Adding a bracelet to your everyday look can elevate your appearance without calling too much attention to yourself. Our Cuban bracelet is an excellent option if you wish to add some low-key class to your everyday drip.
The CRAFTD Vitruvian Ring
Your jewelry can symbolize your personality, story, and values. If you’re someone who enjoys expressing your inner self to the world, this piece is for you.
Our Vitruvian ring plays off of Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man design. It’s a concept that honors the complexity of human nature, and it’s a reminder that you’re meant to break the mold.
Gold Is Classic for a Reason
There you have it –– gold is sought after for a reason. Even though we no longer use it as currency, it still holds tremendous worth.
If you want to own serious gold, purchasing a gold ingot might be right for you. However, if you like the style and aesthetic appeal of gold jewelry, going for CRAFTD jewelry is the right move. You can enjoy the appeal of gold paired with your favorite streetwear to elevate your appearance.
Mercury-free, small-scale artisanal gold mining in Mozambique | Montana State University
Hallmarks and Hallmarking | Washington University in St. Louis
The Vitruvian Man | The University of Chicago
Anglo-Saxon Dictionary: H-N | Project Gutenberg