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When did California become a state?

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Quick Answer

California became a state on Sept. 9th, 1850. It was the 31st state and gained official statehood in record time partly due to the California Gold Rush.

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Full Answer

The region of California, along with many other present-day Western states, was gained by the United States after the conclusion of the Mexican-American War in 1848. The simultaneous discovery of gold in California meant that it quickly gained the population of settlers necessary to apply for statehood, which at the time was 60,000. California was admitted into the Union as a free state during the Compromise of 1850 between the Northern free states and the Southern slave states, which determined the fate of the new American Southwest.

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