National Talk Like A Grizzled Prospector Day

January 24th is observed annually as National Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day. Yes, it’s an entire day of talking like an “old-timey” prospector looking for some gold in ‘dem hills! This is a good day to use words such as “dadburn,” “hornswoggle,” “consarn,” and “dumfungled.”

Just be sure not to confuse talking like a prospector with talking like a pirate or a cowboy. The speech patterns and vocabulary of cowboys, pirates, and prospectors are all different. And while a person is talking like a 19th-century miner, it’s also a good idea to dress up like one as well.

The History of National Talk Like A Grizzled Prospector Day

During the mid-19th century, James W. Marshall discovered gold at Sutter’s Mill and this would end up sparking the California Gold Rush. Thousands of people from all across North America poured into California to try their hand at trying to find gold.

Because these people came from all over and many of them spoke their native languages, it could sometimes be hard to understand what these prospectors were saying. It’s the idea of a “prospector’s tongue” that came into existence at this time.

What’s missing in most conversations about the California Gold Rush is that many miners ended up working for wealthy statesmen and organizations as mines were constructed. These miners often had to work long hours under extreme conditions. And many of their lives were shortened due to respiratory diseases and accidents.

In 2008, Chris Jepsen of Orange Country wanted to draw attention to what these miners had to endure. This is when he decided to create National Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day. Sure, this is a day for people to have fun talking like an “old-timer,” but it’s also a holiday for people to learn a little bit more about these miners and what they did for the U.S.

Some Of The Foods Enjoyed By Grizzled Prospectors

To keep with the theme of this holiday, we thought that we’d take a few moments to list some of the foods that many prospectors enjoyed while they were searching those hills for gold. Let’s look at ’em, shall we folks?

  • Squaw Honey (a syrup made by boiling clovers and other flowers.)
  • Hangtown Fry (an omelet made from bacon and oysters.)
  • Moose Pie (yes, it’s made with moose steak or ground moose meat).
  • Salmon Stew.
  • Hard Tack.
  • Dried Apples.

Observing National Talk Like A Grizzled Prospector Day

On this day, people should certainly talk like a prospector and even dress up like one if they want, but they should also take the time to learn more about prospectors and what they had to endure. People should also spread the word about this holiday using the hashtag #TalkLikeAGrizzledProspectorDay on social media.

When is it?
This year (2023)
January 24 Tuesday
Next year (2024)
January 24 Wednesday
Last year (2022)
January 24 Monday
Weird & Obscure