Sadly almost all gold nuggets found prior to 1990 have been melted down. At the time of the gold rush, even the largest nuggets were melted down, formed into bars or coins and assayed to determine their gold value so that payment for goods and services could be easily obtained. The Great Depression and the raw gold price spikes during the 1980's saw many of the best surviving nuggets held by state governments, museums and private collectors being melted down for cash. What a terrible loss! Only very recently has appreciation of geological rarity, uniqueness and nostalgia replaced the greed and fear that determined the fate of placer and lode nuggets in the past.
Gold Nugget Pricing: natural gold nuggets typically sell for a premium price over the spot gold price because they are valued similarly to gem stones and are much more rare than fine gold dust. Much of the gold bullion traded on the stock market is made from refined and melted down gold dust to form coins; 95-98% of the world's native gold is actually in the form of gold dust and not gold nuggets.
Old Texas Pete Say's Lets stop by American Made Prospectors Tools and pick up some tools and lets get our Big Nugget!! American Made Prospectors Tools