The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

Why is the story set in a mining town? What was the historical significance of mining towns to the development of the West, and what kind of people did they attract?

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The setting of the mining town reflects the lifestyle that Twain experienced as he went west and learned about the development of the west. Miners were often the kind of men who wanted to make a "quick buck" while discovering the "gold" that represented the riches that the west was supposed to be full of.