From 1859 to 1880 the comstock mine produced some $300 million in silver and gold. Virginia became a boomtown, or a town that has a sudden burstof economic or population growth. Population jumped from 3,000 in the 1860's to 20,000 in the 1870's. By the 1890's the mining boom was over. Early migration and settlement: trappers and miners in the West; the reasons for increasing migration; the Oregon Trail.