A History of the Tonopah Area
and Adjacent Region
of Central Nevada,
A History of the Tonopah Area
and Adjacent Region
of Central Nevada,
A thesis presented to the
Faculty of the Department of History
UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA
In partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the degree
MASTER OF ARTS
by Lucile Rae Berg
with an introduction by
Robert D. McCracken
Nye County Press
Published in 2011 by Nye County
Press P.O. Box 153
Tonopah, Nevada 89049
Copyright © 2011 by Nye County Press
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or
transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission
in writing from the publisher.
DESIGN BY JANE RAESE
Text set in ii-point Adobe Caslon Pro
Frontispiece: Lucile Berg in her twenties, circa 1937. Courtesy Lucile R. Berg.
Printed in the United States of America
In 1942, a beautiful young woman named Lucile Rae Berg wrote a master's thesis for the history department at the University of Nevada in Reno. The title of her thesis was "The History of the Tonopah Area and Adjacent Region of Central Nevada, 1827-1941." Lucile's thesis was the most authoritative and comprehensive work on the history of central Nevada up to that time. For the past 68 years, it has been essential reading for those interested in the region's history. The big problem has been obtaining a copy; in recent decades the most a lucky reader could hope for was a faded, poor quality photocopy.
Thanks to the efforts of the Nye County Board of Commissioners and Darrell Lacy, director of the Nye County Nuclear Waste Repository Policy Office, this situation has changed. The best general source on the history of central Nevada from the late 1820S up to World War II has now been published by Nye County Press, the county's own book-publishing arm.
Lucile Rae Berg was born October 12, 1914, in Round Mountain, Nevada, a small mining community located in northern Nye County. Her father was John Berg, one of four Berg brothers who had moved to Round Mountain not long after the discovery of gold there in 1906. Prior to their arrival in Round Mountain, the Berg brothers had gone to the Yukon following the discovery of gold there. Though they didn't get rich in the Yukon, unlike so many gold rush boomers everywhere, they didn't leave flat broke, either.
The Berg brothers, Elmer, Will, John, and Karl, were originally from Yellow Springs, Ohio, and had ended up in Round Mountain by way of Eugene, Oregon, and Dawson City in the Yukon. All but Elmer spent most of their remaining years in Round Mountain, and two, Will and Karl, are buried there. A significant number of present-day Smoky Valley residents are descendants of the Berg brothers.
John Berg, nicknamed "By Jingo" because of his frequent use of that expression, was mechanically inclined. For much of his life, he operated a garage in the big metal-sided building he constructed in Round Mountain across the street from the beautiful home his brother Will built for his bride, Lillian, in 1914. Both structures still stand. Around 1911, John purchased two Cadillac automobiles and for a time operated a transportation service between Goldfield and Tonopah.
Lucile's mother, Blanche Hunsaker, was from Eugene, Oregon. The story of Blanche and John's courtship is quite romantic. John met Blanche in Oregon, where he and his brothers were residing prior to going to the Yukon. Once in the Yukon, John couldn't get Blanche out of his mind. So he wrote her father from the Yukon asking for her hand in marriage, and her father gave his permission. John's brother Will, who was in Oregon at the time, escorted Blanche to Dawson City, Yukon, on his return to the north country. Interestingly, Blanche kept a small diary on that trip to the Yukon with Will, and in it she writes of her love for John. Blanche and John were married in the Yukon and remained there for a time before moving to Round Mountain. Lucile says of her mother and father, "They went well together."
Lucile was her parents' only child and was the apple of their eye. As their much-loved pride and joy, Lucile grew up in the small mining camp strong-willed and confident.
Lucile Rae Berg as a teenager, pictured in the back yard of her home in
Round Mountain, Nevada, circa 1930. Courtesy Roger Berg.
The family's home in Round Mountain is remembered as small, quite tidy, and warm. It featured a bay window in which Blanche always had flowers, including African violets. The kitchen was small, and steps led to a back porch. Off the living room was a bedroom, with another bedroom—Lucile's—and a bathroom located off of it. The family was careful with its finances. For example, Lucile's father always wore long-sleeved white or light blue Arrow shirts underneath his bib overalls. When the collars and cuffs became worn, Blanche would turn them.
Lucile attended school in Round Mountain and believed she wanted to be a schoolteacher. Upon graduation from high school, she attended the University of Nevada in Reno. (At that time, there was no UNLV.) When Lucile finished her undergraduate work, she returned to Nye County and taught for several years in the Smoky Valley region, including in Manhattan and Weepah. In 1939, at the age of twenty-five, she taught in Round Mountain. When teaching, Lucile recalls she had little trouble maintaining order in her classroom. "They couldn't get away with anything with me. I'd done so much already . . . I knew all their tricks," she said. But she tired of teaching.
Like her father, Lucile had always loved history, and she re-turned to the university in Reno to study that topic as a graduate student. John Berg had been the inspiration for her master's thesis, which she completed in 1942. Because there were few opportunities for historians at that time—especially for women—Lucile, as she recently pointed out, never really "used" her history degree, except for writing an occasional history article for area newspapers. Her father often supplied information to supplement these efforts.
Lucile moved to Carson City in 1945, then back to Round Mountain in 1946, then some time later back to Reno, and back and forth through the years. She often earned a living as a book-keeper but lived mostly off investments. In Round Mountain, she said, she worked in the Round Mountain Mine office and in the assay department. She is described as being a good cook, proficient at sewing, and quite skilled in crocheting and knitting.
Like so many Smoky Valley residents from years past, Lucile fondly recalls the frequent community dances that were once an important part of social life in the area. A piano was typically part of the musical accompaniment, which Lucile on occasion played. Sometimes the dances were held at Darrough's Hot Springs.
Lucile never married. Asked why, she replied that she "couldn't be bothered; too much trouble." In addition to being a very independent and private person, she was apparently reluctant to give up her maiden name. But Lucile had boyfriends, typically men fifteen to twenty or more years her senior. She and Eddie Critchfield dated for many years until he passed away. Critchfield had grown up in the Round Mountain area and had been successful in mining at Round Mountain. He owned a single-engine airplane, a Cessna 120, and taught Lucile how to fly. She obtained her pilot's license in 1951 and flew for pleasure. On occasion she flew solo from Reno to Round Mountain, sometimes detouring over Lake Tahoe.
Lucile is a lifelong member of the Christian Science Church, of which her mother was also a member. She reports being healed through the faith as a very small child after doctors had given up on her.
Lucile begins her thesis with a description of the geographical area it covers, including Big Smoky, Reese River, Monitor, and Ralston valleys. She discusses points of notable interest in the area, including hot springs, Elephant Rock, Diana's or Devil's Punchbowl, and the Northumberland Caves.
In the second chapter, she discusses three early Euro-American explorations through the area: Colonel John C. Fremont's 1845 expedition and Jedediah Smith's travels in 1827, as well as the travels in the region by Captain J. H. Simpson in 1859.
Chapter 3 involves a discussion of early mining camps located in the northern part of the area, including Ione, Ophir Canyon, Last Chance, Hercules, and Summit canyons, Kingston Canyon, Santa Fe, and Northumberland. Austin was discovered in 1862, and prospectors working southward discovered silver at Ione in 1863.
In Chapter 4 she discusses the discovery of silver in the Toquima Range, loo miles south of Austin, at a place first called Silver Bend—later, its name was changed to Belmont. She de-scribes the activities at Barcelona (1867), San Antonio and Liberty (1863), Jett Canyon (1876), and Jefferson (1866).
Chapter 5 devoted to a discussion of ranching in the Big Smoky, Reese River, and Monitor valleys. Ranching began in Big Smoky Valley in 1863.
Chapter 6 is devoted to mining in the area after 19oo. Jim But-ler, of course, discovered the silver and gold at Tonopah in 1900. Interestingly, Butler found old location monuments at the site, but they had fallen down and there were no notices on them. The chapter also discusses the construction of railroads in the region as well as the discovery at Goldfield in 1902 and the founding of a community there. Activities east of Tonopah, including at the old towns of Reveille and Tybo, are noted, and Silver Peak's history is discussed.
Chapter 7 deals with the founding of the town of Manhattan in 19o5 and activity in the surrounding area, including at Baxter Springs and Monarch.
The discovery of Round Mountain in 1906 is discussed in
Chapter 8. Mining activities, the founding of the town, and goings-on associated with the town—including obtaining water, and educational and social doings—are given Lucile's careful attention.
Chapter 9 deals with mining activities in Millett, Birch Creek, the region south of Millett, including Broad and Wall canyons, Cloverdale, Mariposa Canyon, and Moore's Creek.
Chapter 10 deals with the rushes to Weepah and Rawhide in 1927.
The last section of her thesis provides a summary of mining and, to a lesser extent, ranching in the area.
We are indeed lucky to have Lucile Berg's master's thesis. It provides a perspective on area history that cannot be recaptured. Lucile's family and the people with whom she grew up knew firsthand of events she discusses.
The thesis has been given a "polishing up" by a professional copy editor, but all factual material remains as it was when Lucile wrote it. I have occasionally inserted an editor's note to clarify statements or bring the information up to date, but my additions [in square brackets] are few.
As I write this, Lucile is ninety-six years old and resides in Sacramento, California. She is delighted that her thesis is being published. On a personal note, it has been extremely satisfying to have been involved in its publication so many years after its acceptance by the faculty at the university. The fact that Lucile is such a lovely person makes it all the more rewarding.
Lucile's high school graduation portrait, 1932. Courtesy Lucile R. Berg.
A number of individuals were involved in transposing Lucile Rae Berg's master's thesis into this volume. Margaret Lawrence arranged for me to meet and interview Lucile in Sacramento, California. She also put me in contact with Beverly Warnock, who provided photographs and personal documents relating to Lucile's biography. Roger and Ann Berg and Shirley Ann Henley graciously provided background information on Lucile and on the Berg family.
The Central Nevada Museum in Tonopah provided a photo-copy of Lucile's thesis. Julie Lancaster and Jim Schwartzkopff digitized that copy and made corrections in the digitized version stemming from the poor quality of the original photocopy. Eva La Rue, curator at the museum, copied some of the photographs seen in this book. Jean Charney provided production assistance at several points as this manuscript was assembled. Elaine Ezra of TerraSpectra Geomatics in Las Vegas, Nevada, constructed the digitized map of central Nevada.
Michelle S. Asakawa edited the entire manuscript, bringing writing style and format into current norms, taking care to pre-serve the author's voice. Darlene Morse proofread a set of pages, and Teri Lefever indexed the book. Jane Raese designed and typeset the book and its cover.
Pictures of Lucile Berg and her parents, John and Blanche, were provided by Lucile Rae Berg and by her nephew Roger Berg.
Thanks go to the Nye County Board of Commissioners—Joni Eastley, Gary Hollis, Andrew "Butch" Borasky, Lorinda Wichman, and Fely Quitevis—and to Darrell Lacy, director of the Nye County Nuclear Waste Repository Policy Office, for their support of this book's publication.
The residents of Nye County must also be thanked for their interest and support of the study of their history.
Robert D. McCracken
General Description of
Big Smoky, Reese River,
Monitor, and Ralston Valleys
Extending over 100 miles northward from Tonopah, and J with its chief lower extremity to the west and southwest of that city, is the region known as Big Smoky Valley. This valley is almost in the geographic center of the state of Nevada. It is about 200 miles long (north to south) and varies in width from about 9 miles to almost 5o miles (west to east). The main northern part of the valley is bounded on the west by the Toiyabe Range of mountains, which vary between 10,000 and 12,000 feet in elevation. Arc Dome, opposite the town of Round Mountain, and Bunker Hill, just north of the mouth of Kingston Canyon, are the highest peaks. Arc Dome is 11,775 feet high, and Bunker Hill is 11,477 feet.
The east side of Big Smoky Valley is bordered by a low mountain range known as the Northumberland Mountains, the highest peak of which is 10,543-foot Wildcat Peak, and further south, Mount Jefferson with an elevation of 11,807 feet. Then come the Shoshone Hills, about 10,000 feet elevation, followed by Bald Mountain (9,275 feet) and the Smoky Mountains (about 9,000 feet). The town of Round Mountain is situated at the southern end of Mount Jefferson; Manhattan is located further south, between Bald Mountain and the Smoky Mountains. These mountains form a more or less connected eastern border for almost 100 miles and are known collectively as the Toquima Range.'
To the west of Big Smoky Valley lies the Toiyabe Range, which gets lower as it extends southward and ends at Peavine, about 20 miles south of Round Mountain. Here the valley widens out to the west to almost 5o miles. It was sometimes referred to in earlier times as San Antonio Valley, but there are no dividing mountains here at all. Further to the west are the low Monte Cristo Mountains, and the Toiyabes, which are about 10 miles wide, form the northern border of this section of the valley. Cloverdale is located in this part of the Toiyabes. On the east is a low pass about 5 miles long between the Smoky and San Antonio mountains. This pass is nearly opposite the end of the Toiyabe Range.
West of the Toiyabe Mountains is Reese River Valley, bordered on the west by the Shoshone Range of mountains, in which Ione is located. Reese River heads near Arc Dome and flows north to the Humboldt River in wet seasons. Usually it sinks before it has traveled more than a hundred miles on that journey, however. Part of this is due to its use for irrigation.
To the east of the Toquima Range are the Monitor and Ralston valleys. Sometimes these are called Upper and Lower Ralston, but today Upper Ralston is known as Monitor Valley and is bordered on the east by the Monitor Range. There are low mountains dividing Monitor and Ralston valleys, and here Belmont is located. The principal streams of the Monitor Valley are Pine, Mosquito, and Barley Creeks; Ralston Valley has no streams whatsoever. Smoky Valley has several good-sized streams, such as Twin Rivers and Kingston, while numerous smaller streams come from both sides of the valley. Water is found near the lower end of Ralston Valley about 17 miles north and a little east of Tonopah at Rye Patch. The water comes close to the surface there, and a number of wells have been drilled for watering stock and supplying Tonopah with water.
In the northern part of Smoky Valley is a dry lake bed about 20 miles long and 3 or 4 miles wide. About forty years ago [ca. I900] it had water in it, and markings throughout the valley attest that at one time the lake must have been quite large. Walter Schmidtlein remembers skating on a part of the lake at its marshy northern end when he was a boy. During the past year or two [ca. 1939-1940] water has collected into two or three small lakes in parts of the dry bed in the early spring, sometimes remaining into the summer. There is in addition a small lake several miles to the south that is formed by Moore's Creek, which comes from the north side of Mount Jefferson.
About 20 miles south of the big dry lake is Darrough's Hot Springs. The largest spring there jumps several feet into the air constantly and is said to be the second hottest spring in the world. (2) The Darrough family placed an old piece of machinery in the form of a cannel over this spring so that the water appears to be coming from a large pipe. A concrete curbing has been placed around the spring thus forming a pool about 10 feet in diameter. There are numerous other hot springs nearby, and up above the road are many more, no two of which have the same mineral content. (3) There is a cold spring about 75 feet from the big hot spring, and steam from this latter spring can be seen from Round Mountain before the sun hits it, a distance of about 10 miles.
Some years ago, water from the hot spring was diverted into a pool in which cooking can be done. Food must be placed in a covered container and then put in this "spring," as it is called. A ham cooks in three hours, and string beans cook in six hours for canning. Before this spring was fixed to cook in, a prospector placed a ham directly in the hot water and went off for several hours. When he returned, all he had left was the bone; the meat had cooked away.(4)
Blue Spring is a deep, large pool on the western edge of the dry lake. According to an account taken from the Bancroft Scraps, there were in the 1860s several pools there varying in diameter from 20 feet to 80 feet and at least 100 feet deep. Another report says there is only one pool and its depth is unknown. (5) The water in Blue Spring is soft and clear, and its dark blue appearance comes from its depth. It sends off a large stream of water into the dry lake, but this sinks before it goes any distance. Sagebrush and bullbrush grow thickly near the water. The water in the pool is thought to originate from underground mountain streams that meet an obstruction, form a large underground reservoir, then come to the surface. (6) This is quite possible, for no large stream flows from the mountains in this spot though there is a large watershed.
Near the end of the Toiyabe Range in the southern part of Big Smoky Valley is a small spring known as Coyote Hole. On the opposite side of the valley is another spring or group of springs called Bull Springs by the cattlemen. (7) The water in Bull Springs is bad. A few miles south of Coyote Hole is a reservoir built to collect the water from Peavine Creek to irrigate the land at San Antonio. This body of water is known as Seylor's Lake, probably because E. E. Seylor was the man who lived on the banks of Peavine Creek when the reservoir was built. There is water here most of the time.
It is a good place to skate in the winter if there is any ice, for it is almost a mile long and about one-quarter of a mile wide at times. A few miles farther south, out in the flat, is San Antonio (pronounced San Antone). A spring used to be there known as Indian Spring, but it mostly dried up after the reservoir was built. In the arm of the valley that goes toward Silver Peak is another dry lake extending for several miles. In the spring the flood waters from Peavine Creek cover this section, and in the winter there is often water here. Across the valley to the north, toward the northern end of the Monte Cristo Mountains, is Crow Springs. This was one of the stage stations on the road between Tonopah and Sodaville. (8)
Coming back to the northern end of the San Antonio Mountains and crossing the San Antonio Pass, which the highway from Tonopah to Manhattan and Round Mountain now uses, into Ralston Valley and continuing up the west side of the Smoky Mountains, is Baxter Springs. A few miles farther east, in the valley itself, is a small hill called Coyote Hill. Spanish Springs or Wells is located here. During the early days, this used to be a stage station on the highway from Tonopah to Manhattan by way of the Manhattan Summit, and the wells were dug to supply water.
About 3 miles from Spanish Springs up the old Manhattan road is Elephant Rock, a formation resembling an elephant sitting on its hind feet with its trunk touching the ground in front of it. Facing it from the Manhattan approach, it looks more natural. Behind it is another rock formation that in some instances and with a little imagination looks something like a camel lying down. About 4 miles on up the road is Pipe Spring. This spring is piped down into a concrete reservoir about three feet square and was one of the stopping places for water for teams and automobiles climbing the Manhattan summit.
In the northern part of Monitor Valley, about 5 miles south of the Potts ranch, is the Devil's Punch Bowl, sometimes called Diana's Bowl. It is a round hill rising out of the center of the valley, about 150 feet in diameter. About 50 feet below the summit's edge is a pool of boiling water, and small hot springs break out around the foot of the hill. (9) Bancroft Scraps describes the pool as being about 75 feet in diameter and 6o or 7o feet deep, in the shape of an inverted bowl in a sedimentary deposit and so pure you can see to a great depth. If a stone is thrown into it you can see it for a long ways down, and it will tend to drift toward the center where the spring seems to come from. No outlet has been found, yet it never varies in height. The newspaper stated that the waterline was 20 feet below the edge of the bowl and could be reached only with the aid of rope. (10) Myron Angel describes the hill as being one-quarter of a mile in diameter where it begins to rise and 100 feet in diameter at the apex. The walls are vertical from the top to the water, and the opening is almost a perfect circle. The water is boiling and gives off hot vapor and steam. (11) The water was in constant ebullition until earthquakes several years ago [ca. 1930s]. Since then the water in the bowl has disappeared. (12)
In the Northumberland Mountains, very near the present town of Northumberland, being only a mile south, are found some caves known as the Northumberland Caves. Some valley residents have visited these caves, which have only a small entrance but open out into a large chamber running northward for several hundred feet. The chamber forks off in different places and has large and small rooms. There are lots of water crystals in the cave. It is located almost at the top of the mountain. (13) A few miles to the north of these caves, on the eastern edge of Big Smoky Valley, are more hot springs. These are not as hot as Darrough's Hot Springs, nor visited as much, as there is no one living there. Sometimes people stay at the hot springs for a few days, but they have to camp and take all necessary equipment with them. The water is considered very beneficial to those suffering from rheumatism.
Most of the Toiyabe Range is covered with pinon pine. Jefferson and the Shoshone Mountains also are fairly heavily wooded. The Smoky Mountains, in contrast, do not have much timber except on the aptly named Timber Hill. Besides pine there are quite a number of other kinds of trees—aspen, birch, cedar, and juniper—and mahogany is found at higher elevations. Although the trees are not very large, stumps have been found of trees five or six feet in diameter. Some of these stumps are smooth, showing that they were cut down for lumber. Many of the canyons have had sawmills in them at one time, and some have had several. The Shoshone, Toiyabe, Toquima, and Monitor ranges are now included in the Toiyabe National Forest.
Most of Big Smoky Valley lies in Nye County. The northern portion of it is in Lander County, and the southern portion is in Esmeralda County. Reese River Valley is in Nye and Lander counties. The northern portion of Monitor Valley is also in Lander County whereas the rest of it and nearly all of Ralston Valley are in Nye County. The southern tip of Ralston Valley is in Esmeralda County. The principal occupations in this region are mining and ranching. More mining is, or has been, carried on in the mountains surrounding Big Smoky Valley than in Reese River Valley, which is known best for its ranching. Monitor Valley has a few ranches, but Ralston Valley currently has none because of the lack of water. At present there are about three ranches in Monitor Valley, about thirteen in Big Smoky Valley, and one or two outside of the Yomba Indian Reservation. At one time the Reese River Valley had twenty or more ranches, but some have since been returned to the reservation. Near Rye Patch in Ralston Valley are two small ranches where sheepherders and cattlemen can camp and water their animals. Years ago someone tried to start a ranch in the northern part of the valley near Spanish Springs but soon gave it up. At one time around 3,000 head of cattle ranged in Big Smoky Valley and its vicinity and between 500 and 600 head of sheep were ranged there. Due to a cycle of dry years and poor prices, and because some of the ranchers sold their water rights to the mining camps, few cattle now range in the valley. There are no sheep in Big Smoky Valley now except for a few head on one or two ranches.
The streams of Reese River, Big Smoky, and Monitor valleys afford excellent places for fishing. These streams have long supplied the people of the valleys, and during each of the past few years the streams have been restocked. The fish do not grow very large because the water level decreases during the hot summers and sometimes the creeks go dry. Nevertheless, some of the fish become quite good-sized, averaging around 8—10 inches in some places, and 15 and 16-inch fish are not unheard of. Deer hunting is good in this region, and there are some sage hen. Quail and pheasant have been planted but so far are not numerous enough for hunting. Mountain sheep are found near Arc Dome and occasionally have been reported at the foot of the mountains, at the edge of the valley, instead of on top of the mountains where they usually stay. In addition, several bands of wild horses once ranged between Round Mountain and Manhattan but have all been caught or killed. Not long ago, there was a report of wild horses in the southern part of Ralston Valley.
Through the Region
FREMONT'S THIRD EXPEDITION, 1845
The first known Caucasian to come through Big Smoky Valley was John C. Fremont, in November 1845, on his third expedition. He gave the valley its name, Big Smoky, because of a blue haze resembling smoke that hangs over the valley and its surrounding mountains, especially in the fall of the year.(1) Fremont marked San Antonio Peak, Hot Springs, Twin Rivers, and Smoky Creek on his trail through the valley. (2)
On November 14, Fremont and his crew camped at a small creek in the northern end of the valley that he called Basin Creek. Later it was called Big Smoky Creek, and today it is known as Kingston Creek in accordance with Kingston Canyon, through which it runs. This creek is about 35 miles south of Austin in the Toiyabe Range of mountains..(3)
On November 16, Fremont camped at what now are known as Darrough's Hot Springs.(4) According to Laura Darrough, he stayed there six weeks, during which time some of his men died there. There is, however, no record of any such stay or deaths in Fremont's memoirs. It would have been well had he stayed six weeks, instead of the one night, and explored the country. The Indians were afraid and hid in the hills. They were surprised to see men who walked like Indians and who traveled with "big white wings." (5) These "wings" were the white canvas coverings on the expedition's wagons. A few of the bravest ventured near and were given sticks of candy. John Dooley, an old Indian, said they were "like candles, red and white." They also were given calico, beads, and food. According to Laura Darrough, Fremont broke his thermometer testing the water and said it was the hottest known spring in the world.(6) Since that time the spring has been tested and found to register 242 degrees Fahrenheit. (7)
Fremont continued south and spent the night of November 17 near San Antonio at Moore's (Peavine) Creek. He then headed west over the mountains, probably very much the same route as the old road from Tonopah to Sodaville in later years. On November 21 he camped at a spring in the pass east of Sodaville that he called Sagundi. This is probably the spring known now as Summit Springs. He then went on to Walker Lake and joined the rest of his party and continued westward. (8)
Jedediah Strong Smith, a fur trader from the Great Salt Lake area, crossed Nevada in 1827 on his return from the Pacific Coast. He must have traveled about the same path as that of Fremont, except in reverse. His journal is brief, but it states that he crossed the Sierra Nevada Mountains near the headwaters of two parallel streams that flowed northward. This must have been either the Carson or the Walker River branches, probably the latter, for his route went south of Walker Lake. He probably traveled north and east through Big Smoky Valley and on to the southwest corner of Great Salt Lake. His brief description of the country would not fit the Humboldt route or a route farther south, nearer to Las Vegas. (9)
In 1859, Captain J. H. Simpson was sent out with an expedition to survey a wagon road from Camp Floyd, Utah, to Genoa, in Carson Valley. They traveled south of the Humboldt route and thereby, according to their survey, cut off about 300 miles. (10) The Pony Express and Overland Mail used this route later, which is now for the most part followed by the Lincoln Highway. (11) The transcontinental telegraph was first built along this route, which went from Ruby Valley southwestwardly, across Reese River Valley and on to Genoa. (12)
On May 25, 1859, Simpson camped at Antelope Creek at an elevation of 6,640 feet. This must have been near the Hickison summit, which separates Big Smoky Valley from Monitor Valley in the north. After crossing this pass, the P-er-re-ah [Pah-er-re-ah?] or Big or High Mountains were in front of them. These mountains had been seen for several days, and Simpson recorded that they reminded him of the Humboldt Mountains because they were so prominent. These must be the Toiyabe Mountains. They skirted the foot of the Pah-re-ah or Water Mountains, going southward, then turned diagonally across the Won-a-ho-nupe Valley in a north-westwardly direction. This valley was described as being from 9 to 1 2 miles wide, uninterrupted toward the south, while to the north were mountains a few miles from where they entered the pass of the Pah-er-re-ah Mountains. From the description given, it would seem that they crossed the northern end of Big Smoky Valley about where the highway does today. The Pah-re-ah Mountains must be those known as the Simpson Park Mountains today. (13)
Instead of going up the canyon used by the highway, Simpson's expedition must have turned farther north and gone up what is known now as Simpson Park Canyon. They called this canyon Won-a-ho-nupe and surmised that there were trout in the stream because it was clear and swift. The canyon opened out into a park 3 by 4 miles containing a lake of several acres in extent. Some of the men called this park Simpson's Park, but Simpson himself continued to use the Indian names wherever he could. He followed the main stream for 7 miles without coming to the summit and decided the stream took them too far north. The next day they headed directly west to Simpson Pass at an elevation of 7,104 feet. (14) This pass must be the Austin summit, for the description fits although the elevation does not. The Austin summit is 7,554 feet high.
Simpson and his men traveled 61/2 miles from the pass to reach Reese River. The Indian name for this was Pang-que-o-whop-pe, or Fish Creek. The river itself was described as being 10 feet wide, 1 1/2 feet deep, and having a moderate current. Trout of 2 1/2 pounds were found in it. John Reese, who had discovered it several years earlier, called it New River, but Simpson named it after Reese. The valley was reported to be 10 to 15 miles wide, seemingly uninterrupted to the north, and bounded by mountains to the south about 30 miles distant. (15) This is not quite the case, for the valley continues for so 5oles or more, but small hills jut out into it and give it the appearance of ending about 3o miles from where Simpson was camped.
The expedition's next camp was 22 miles upstream and south-ward; after this they headed southwest toward a pass characterized by reddish rocks at an elevation of 6,483 feet. They found a small spring to their left near the summit. This pass must be what is known as Railroad Pass today, separating Reese River Valley from the one to the west. This pass is 6,499 feet high. They continued westward to the Se-day-e or Lookout Mountains and followed a creek that Simpson named Smith Creek after one of his men. (16)
Early Mining Camps
in the Region, 1860-1880:
After silver was discovered in Austin in 1862, prospectors worked southward. Silver was found at Ione in 1863, and a rush began. With the county seat of Esmeralda County located more than 100 miles away, the Union district soon began clamoring for a new county to be established, with the county seat to be located at Ione. In response, Nye County was created on February 16, 1864, and Ione was made the county seat on April 2. Named after Governor Tames W. Nye, the new county contained all of southern Nevada south of the thirty-ninth parallel and east of Esmeralda County. The boundaries of Nye County have since been changed six times, and it has had three county seats. Lincoln and Clark counties have been carved from it, and parts of it have been given to Esmeralda and White Pine counties. (1) It is today the second largest county in the United States, having an area of 18,294 square miles, and is almost 400 miles long and about 200 miles wide at its widest point.
A discovery of ore in Montana almost made a ghost town of Ione before the town really got started. (2) In 1865 the Nye County News reported that the Union district was not sufficiently developed for capital to come in, though the one mill in operation was proving a success.(3) In 1867 the county seat was moved to Belmont despite a vigorous protest from the people of Ione, who went so far as to make application to the state Supreme Court to issue a restraining order. (4) In 1874 the town claimed 150 residents, and the ten-stamp quartz mill, which had only run five or six years after being built, was expected to start again the next spring. (5)
In 1909 the Tonopah Miner reported that hydraulicing was to be put in operation on the placer ground around Ione. (6) In 1928 considerable quicksilver from cinnabar ore was produced. The Tonopah Daily Times reported that the Mercury Mines, which had produced $1.5 million when the price of quicksilver was one-third of what it was in 1928, was getting ready to work some more. (7) Quicksilver mines are still being established and worked there to-day.
About so 50 miles south of Austin, in the Toiyabe Range, S. Poulerond and a party of Frenchmen discovered silver ore in 1863. The property was located in Ophir Canyon, and the district was called the Twin Rivers district. The Murphy Mine began operations there the next year and produced more than S3million [presumably over the life of the mind](8) In September 1865, residents petitioned for the building of a road from Ione across Reese River Valley and over the summit into Ophir Canyon, a distance of i6 miles. (9) Supplies and machinery for the mill were freighted over this road, which shaved about' oo miles off the route through Austin and down Big Smoky Valley.
Also in September 1865, one-half of the Murphy Mine was sold for $50,000 in gold to Eastern capitalists, who planned to build a forty-stamp mill (10) The Twin River Mining Company built a twenty-stamp mill, which cost over $2,00,000. (11) Bricks for the chimney and mill were made in Big Smoky Valley where Emma Rogers's ranch is now (12) and hauled from there up the canyon to the mill site, a distance of about 10 miles. In August 1865, ore worth $114 per ton was taken from a 3o-foot shaft," and in April 1868, the roasting furnace, the first experimental Stetefeldt furnace ever built, (14) was reported a success." (15) The mill operated in 1867-1868 and produced $750,000 worth of bullion. No dividends were paid the stockholders; they became discouraged and allowed the property to go into bankruptcy. (16) A Belmont newspaper reported in October 1868 that Ophir was not very lively. (17)
J. W. Hogan, father of the Austin Hogans, was superintendent there [at the mill] in 1873-74. The Belmont Courier reported that 11,881 tons of ore with a value of $748,557.89 was the record for 1873 and there was hope of doing better for the next year." (18) However, things did not go so well, and the steam quartz mill was up for sale in November 1874. Only two watchmen, one gardener, one storekeeper, and his wife were left at the mill by December. (19) In March 1875, ore was found up to 200 feet in width where there was thought to be none, and the mine's operators decided the mine had been abandoned prematurely. The stamp mill was sold at auction in San Francisco on May 17 of that year, and by June several claims were located. It seemed that once more the canyon would be lively. In December 1875, the Courier reported that a fire had occurred in the shaft on October 26, lasting four days and destroying the timber for a depth of 6o feet. Work had been resumed by November 25. (20) In December 1879, the outlook for the canyon was reported to be good. (21)
Another mine was established on the summit of Ophir Canyon, but it did not last. Water in the Murphy Mine, which was only 300 feet deep, caused much difficulty, (22) and that as well as the low price of silver and the loss of the vein caused the mine to quit working about 1880. John McLeod, later a rancher in Big Smoky Valley, was foreman when it closed. (23) At one time 2,500 pounds of amalgam (silver and quicksilver) had to be smelted. The fore-man ordered it stacked in a corner, then he shipped it to the stock exchange and the next day the stock went to $5o a share. Some of the ore found was worth $400 a ton. (24)
In 1907 the lost vein was reported found and the mine was to be reopened. The water rights on three creeks were secured, and it was reported that an electric power plant would be built to supply the neighboring camps of Manhattan and Round Mountain.25 In 1909 the Gold Crown group of claims in Ophir Canyon were reported as promising better than $40 to the ton.26 In 1917 the property came into the hands of the Nevada Ophir Mining Company, which took over operations in 1918 and worked the mine and mill a few years.27 Today only the walls and chimney of the mill remain. A few stone cabins are left, some with roofs, others only a wall or two, along with one good-sized two-story stone house—all give evidence of the past glory of Ophir. Angel writes that these stone and brick walls and elegant office and mansion show the wastefulness and extravagance of the operators of the mine.28
Two men live in one of the stone houses now, doing a little prospecting and finding some ore. They have to leave their car about halfway up the canyon, as the road has been washed out by cloudbursts. The road is very steep, rising t,000 feet from the mouth of the canyon to the mill in a distance of about 3 miles. (29)
In Last Chance, the next canyon south of Ophir, a 4o-foot wall was found in the Master ledge and was being developed in August 1865; it yielded assays of $42 to $62 a ton. In the canyon to the south of Last Chance, a monster ledge was found. This canyon is known as Hercules, and a town of the same name was started in 1865. There were some cabins and tents, and some people camped under the trees there. The hills and canyons swarmed with prospectors, the Nye County News reported? (30) They were looking for silver but did not find enough to make staying worthwhile.
Gold was found in Last Chance years later. In January 1909, it was reported that 20 tons of ore was packed by Indians three-quarters of a mile to the mouth of the canyon and teamed to Austin. From there it was shipped to Brigham, Utah, and yielded 190 per ton. (31)
In the 1920s, several mining men went up to look at the properties in Last Chance and did some work. The road to Last Chance goes only to the mouth of the canyon, requiring a hard 3-mile climb up a trail to the mines. This fact hindered the development of the properties. Although a road could be built up the canyon, about three-quarters of a mile would need a great deal of blasting because the canyon narrows down to a rough, rocky gorge, just wide enough for the stream. W F. Corf prospected and worked his mine in the canyon for years until he died. Later, two men took up Corf's claims and shipped a few tons. In 1941 they put up a small sample mill but only worked a few months as they did not have enough capital to continue the work. (32)
In December 1868 the Mt. Champion (Belmont) reported that the Buckeye Mine, which was discovered in 1865. (33) in Summit Canyon—the second canyon north of Ophir—was producing. The Big Smoky Company had built a mill there before the mine was developed, showing the folly of the managers.(34) In 1874 a sawmill was built in Summit Canyon, (35) probably to supply lumber for the Jefferson Canyon and other mines nearby that were working at that time.
The Victorine Mine in Kingston Canyon, about 25 miles south of Austin in the Toiyabe Range, was discovered in 1852 (1862?), writes Lincoln, and opened and shut down repeatedly. This district, which is in Lander County, was called the Summit district in the early days and was sometimes divided into the Santa Fe district on the north and the Bunker Hill or Victorine district on the south. (36) In 1868 the Victorine was reported as coming into its own with $45—$5o ore. A five-stamp water-powered mill was working steadily but was not saving over 50 percent of the values; nevertheless, it was working at a profit. It was thought that a twenty-stamp mill would be more valuable. There was much lead and copper in the ore, which after being refined was worth $4.50 per ounce because of its gold content. Milling was good, with wood costing $4—$5 a cord and summer salt only 10 miles distant. (37) In 1875 there were four mills in Kingston Canyon. The mines were never very successful due to the low grade of ore. (38)
The Tonopah Miner reported in 1909 that the placer on Big Smoky Creek (Kingston) looked good. The stream gave over 500 inches of water even in the dry season, and power could be developed from the creek to run the mill. The ore ran $6, $8, $25, and $30 a ton, and there was enough to keep a 50-ton mill running twenty-four hours a day. (39) The Kingston Company operated a sixty-stamp mill intermittently for several years, until about 1909. (40) In May 1911, a $600 gold bar was shipped out and the camp was quite lively. In June there was enough ore for two shifts in the mill all summer. In August, the mine that had been located thirty years before was sold. The cyanide plant that had been in-stalled was saving 9o-95 percent of the values. In September, there were 390 ounces of silver produced at Big Creek. (41)
The Tonopah Daily Times reported in 1928 of a rush to Kingston, where ore assaying from $2.60 to $21.50 in gold and silver was found. This proved to be on ground patented forty years be-fore and which had produced a fortune. (42) A few men still work the mines off and on.
The foundations of one of the mills can be seen close to the road near the mouth of the canyon and may be the one referred to in the Tonopah Daily Times in 1928, of which the brick walls were still standing. The large mill, built in the early 1860s of quarried granite, still stands. Part of the mill is being torn down at present for its lumber, which came from Clipper Gap, about 20 miles across Big Smoky Valley in the Toquima Range of mountains opposite Kingston. (43) The brick chimney is still standing. The walls are about 2 feet thick and over 100 feet high. Some of the blocks of stone are about half the size of an automobile. Dynamite was used to blast down the walls, and even a heavy charge failed to shake them at times.
The Mother Lode Mine in Santa Fe Canyon—the canyon just to the north of Kingston—was opened at an early date, probably in the 1860s, by the Century Company. The mill there was moved to Newark in Eureka County near Eureka in 1867. (44) A dozen or so stone cabins and the stone walls of the mill remain at the mouth of the canyon. The mill is large, having two rooms, one several feet higher than the other, about 6o-8o feet wide and 100 - 150 feet long. The houses have one or two rooms and narrow windows, the inside of which are wider than the outside. This probably was for protection against the Indians. The walls on all the buildings are a foot or more thick and made from local stone. The two outer sides of the walls were made of large rocks and filled in between these with small rocks. If they were ever held together with mud, it has all since washed away. Most of the rocks were never smoothed up, except in the mill, but rather used just as they were. Neither were flat rocks used especially.
Across Big Smoky Valley from Ophir Canyon, in the Northumberland Mountains, silver ore was found in 1867 by two prospectors identified only as Herbert and Henry in a May 1867 issue of the Silver Bend Reporter. Located 3 miles north of Thrifts Canyon, the ledge was 9 feet thick and reportedly contained "splendid ore." By that December, a tunnel of 180 feet had been run. It was estimated that the ore commanded from $500 to $1,000 a ton. (45) In May 1868, the Reporter noted that more vigorous operations were expected soon. Developments were fine, and the high-grade ledge ran $5oo a ton. The 125-foot shaft had uncovered richness that exceeded anything previously found there. Ore was shipped to Austin until one of the mills at Indian Spring, known as Hunt's Mill, was purchased and moved to Northumberland. (46) The Quintero Company's mill did not run long. (47) In July, quite a village had sprung up on the west slope of the mountains, facing Monitor Valley." The town, called Learville, lay 38 miles north of Belmont. Brick was being burned and the ten-stamp mill was to start in November. (49) The mines became inactive in 1870 (50)
The ore either did not prove satisfactory, gave out, or was worked out, for nothing more was heard of it until 1908, when ruby silver was found there and a mill was talked of. (51) Prospecting continued, and in 1917 some silver ore was produced. (52)
Dave Neal continued to prospect this region and for years was thought rather foolish to continue his work there. Many people considered the gold in the Northumberland Mountains not worth bothering about. However, when Weepah was worked out in 1939, the same company took over the Northumberland property and moved the machinery, mill, and buildings from Weepah. The mining is carried on by the open-cut method, and the mill was increased to a capacity 350 tons. About seventy men are working there now. (53)
Lucile in front of her father's garage, Round Mountain, late 1930s.
Courtesy Roger Berg.
Early Mining Camps,
Continued: Southern Section
In 1865, prospectors working down the Toquima Range discovered silver in Monitor Valley, about 100 miles south of Austin. (1) The town was first called Silver Bend (2) as that was the name of the region at that time, (3) but the name was soon changed to Belmont. Despite a general depression in mining after 1866, (4) the town prospered and produced $900,000 worth of bullion in seven months. (5) There were five sawmills in the district in 1866.(6) The county seat was moved from Ione to Belmont on February 6, 1867, despite attempts by Ione citizens to prevent it. (7)
In January 1868, after being overhauled, a fifty-stamp mill, the Combination, was working again in Belmont and a forty-stamp mill was completed in East Belmont. (8) Wood and lumber cut nearby commanded $4.50 a cord, although better lumber came from the White Pine Mountains, 75 miles eastward, or from the Sierra Nevada Mountains, 250 miles to the west. (9) In March of that year, saline land was discovered in Big Smoky Valley (10) much to the delight of the people of Belmont, for salt was needed in the milling process to separate the silver ore. (11) After May 1, 1868, a daily mail from Austin came down Monitor Valley (12) whereas be-fore it had been a tri-weekly mail service. (13) In June, a proposal to extend the mail route from Belmont to Silver Peak by way of San Antonio was made, for Silver Peak was active then. (14)
In March 1874, a road was built over the Jefferson Summit and the mail went through Big Smoky Valley instead of Monitor. (15) This gave the Smoky Valley ranchers better service and took advantage of activity in Jefferson. Freight from San Francisco took two months to get to Belmont; on one occasion it took 45 days to make the journey from Chico. (16) Ox or mule teams hauled the freight from Wadsworth by way of Ione, Cloverdale, San Antonio, and Baxter Springs usually, for it was nearer than by way of Austin and there were not so many high summits to traverse. A road from San Antonio up the Manhattan canyon was also used, especially in later years. It took 17-24 days to get freight from Wadsworth to Belmont. After the Palisade and Eureka Railroad was built about 1874, freight came that way and was hauled from Lodi, the railroad terminus, to Belmont by mule teams. The freight time to Lodi was two weeks; freight cost six cents a pound.. (17)
In 1876 a new two-story brick courthouse was built with the intent of centralizing county administration. The telegraph line from Eureka [about 8o miles distant] reached Belmont on September 18, 1876. Wood cost from $7.50 to $8.00 a cord, and water was seventy-five cents a barrel in East Belmont. A beautiful spring (18) and wells supplied the water for Belmont, which was built several miles from the mines because of lack of water there. East Belmont was at the mines and got its water from the Combination Company's mill a quarter of a mile away. Heavy snowfall during the winter of 1875-1876 left Belmont, at an elevation of 8,400 feet, snowed in several times. For the 12-mile route over the Jefferson summit, a coach, sleigh, and buckboard were often used to carry the mail and passengers. Up at Barcelona City, 10,000 feet elevation, the snow was sometimes so 50 feet deep, and in January 1876 the Belmont Courier had to be sent up by an Indian on snowshoes. (19)
In 1874, Tybo, about so 50 miles east of Belmont, became quite lively and there was talk of it becoming the county seat of Nye. Residents in the western part of the county around Ione talked of joining Lander County at different times, especially when Belmont became the county seat. In 1875 there were three bills in the legislature to give part of Nye territory to Lincoln and White Pine counties. Lander and Churchill counties were also wanting some territory. The Belmont Courier reported that if these counties gained the share of land they were asking for, there would be no more Nye County. Lincoln and White Pine counties did get some territory from Nye. In 1879 a meeting was held in Belmont to protest against further division of Nye County, as the western part was again being sought by Lander County. (20) Ione was closer to Austin than to Belmont, and it was natural that Tone's residents would want Austin to be county seat. Then too, Ione had never gotten over the fact that Belmont had replaced the former as county seat. However, the proposed joining with Lander County never took place.
The mines at Belmont worked quite steadily up to 1885 and produced more than $15 million. (21) After silver was demonetized, the town gradually became duller and duller. A little work went on all the time, and nearby camps to the east occasionally showed good signs for a time. By 1898, local prospectors were beginning to look for gold. In May 1899, gold was discovered at Southern Klondyke; the following May, gold was discovered at Tonopah. Interestingly, there is no mention of Tonopah in the Belmont newspaper until October 1900, whereas Southern Klondyke was written about the same month it was found. (22)
In January 1903, about 150 people lived in Belmont. For about twenty years the only activity there had been the work of the county officials, as very little work was done in the mines. After the county seat was moved to Tonopah, there was little to keep Belmont going. In 1904 the Tonopah Bonanza stated that Belmont had produced $9 million when it cost $90 a ton to send the ore to Eureka. It was estimated that $6o million had been produced by all the various districts in the Toiyabe, Toquima, and San Antonio mountains. (23)
Thanks in part to the railroad—which by 1907 was only 45 miles away instead of 200—Belmont's old dumps were worked. The tailings were said to have over 1 00,000 tons of ore averaging $20 a ton in gold, silver, and copper. The recorded output was $10 million. In June 1908, the town was thought to be picking up as new machinery had been ordered to assist the twenty-stamp mill already there. In October of that year, 600,000 tons of low-grade ore had been blocked out, averaging $20 a ton. It was stated that $5 ore could be handled at a good profit and that a larger mill likely would be built. Only the $ 100 ore had been handled in the early days and the mines were only down 300 feet, so it seemed reasonable to expect that Belmont would see a resurgence. (24)
In 1909, turquoise was found in the Belmont area by Mrs. E. S. Weber. (25) In 1911 the Belmont post office was closed, and thereafter residents, numbering about thirty at that time, would have to get their mail at Manhattan. (26) The Monitor Belmont Company acquired the old mines in 1914 and built a ten-stamp 100-ton flotation plant in 1915, which closed in 1917. (27) The Nevada Wonder Company leased the mine in 1918 and, under superintendent J. A. Carpenter's direction, spent $80,000 to remove water in the mine to the 400-foot level. After a year the company let the lease go for the ore did not prove to be worth the work involved. (28) In 1921 a 30-ton cyanide plant was put up to treat the tailings. (29) This plant worked successfully from 1915 to 1919. (30)
Some work continued at Belmont during the 1920s, though most of the residents had moved away. At one point the population consisted of two elderly ladies who lived at opposite ends of the town. Their relatives urged them to leave, and one of them, Mrs. Elisabeth Goldback, eventually agreed to move to Manhattan during the winter. The other one, Mrs. Kitty Anderson, sometimes visits relatives for a little while but always returns to Belmont. Last winter (1940-1941) she stayed alone all winter in the town, but she says she will not do this again. (31) The road from Tonopah to Northumberland goes through Belmont, so she occasionally received visitors or at least saw people on the route through town. Many of the old brick and stone buildings are still standing, some in good shape. The courthouse and the brick chimney for the Combination Mill fill stand out. The tailing dumps give evidence of past activity, and In the summer some of the former residents return to grow fine dower and vegetable gardens. Belmont is almost a ghost town, but It could become active again if the war [World War II] continues and the price of silver goes to $1.29 an ounce. (32)
The Spanish Belt mining district, lying along the tops of the Shoshone Mountains west of Belmont, was discovered in 1867, but nothing much was done there until 1873. Some $210 ore was found there in 1874. Barcelona City, 7 miles from Belmont, was established in 1874, and became quite a town for a while. Beginning that year, the Austin stage route went from Belmont through Barcelona City, but by 1876 it returned to its old route up Meadow Canyon and over the Jefferson summit. In October 1875, a road was built to Barcelona to haul the hoisting works ordered from San Francisco. (33)
The houses of Barcelona City were made mostly of stone, for it was thought the town would be permanent, but it was dead after 1876. Work continued in the district, and in 1898-1899 several quicksilver mines were being worked there. T. L. Oddie had claims there at the Barcelona Mine. (34)
In 1928 the Van Ness and Flower groups of quicksilver mines were worked again. New cabins were built of stone and those already there were repaired. Oil instead of wood was used in the two D retorts of 2-ton capacity. The Tonopah Daily Times reported that this plant, 11 miles from Belmont, was the first quicksilver plant in Nye County and that it yielded 1 1/2 flasks of quicksilver every 24 hours from 6 percent ore. In October of that year , they decided that the ore was too low grade and moved the plant to Mina. (35)
In October 1863, ore was discovered in the San Antonio Mountains by some men named Robles, Fisk, and others. (36) Two hundred miners were reported working there in 1864, and rock had been taken to a mill in the Washington district over 100 miles to the north on the Reese River side of the Toiyabe Range. The ore yielded $600 per ton. Rich silver was found, but wood and water were scarce. (37) No mill was built at the mine, but in 1865 the Hunt Mill was built at San Antonio Station, then called Indian Spring, about 12 miles from the mine. This was a ten-stamp mill. In 1867, a four-stamp mill was built by a man named Rigby, but it operated only for a year. (38) In 1868, the Hunt Mill was moved to Northumberland. (39) In February 1868, some 4,000 ounces of bullion were processed at the Rigby Mill. (40) In March 1875, ten men were reported to be working in the district. (41)
The Liberty Mine was the principal mine in the district (42) and had between thirteen and sixteen men working there in 1867. The incline shaft was down 275 feet, and the milled ore netted $250— $300 a ton. (43) In 1876 the leasers were working the mine and hauling their ore to the Prussian Mill in Jefferson Canyon because the mills at San Antonio were no longer there. A large ore body that ran close to $1,000 per ton had been uncovered, and $100,000 was claimed to have been taken from the workings. The mine struck a fault and, after much money had been spent looking for ore, without success, the mine was abandoned, in about 1879. (44) A brick chimney remained at San Antonio until after the discovery of Tonopah, when it was torn down because the bricks were needed. (45)
The knowledge of this mine later encouraged Jim Butler to prospect in the same locality, (46) and he discovered Tonopah, about :8 miles south in the same range of mountains. (47) The old Liberty Mine was said, in 1901, to have pillars of ore assaying as high as $400 a ton and others of $119. The extension of the railroad through Big Smoky Valley, which was expected very soon at that time (1901), was all that was needed to revive the camp, accord-:rig to the Tonopah Bonanza. The mine was relocated in 1902, and tour large mule teams were in use hauling merchandise. The ore averaged $70 a ton and was 20 percent gold. A milling plant was
being planned. (48)
In March 1905, a strike 2 miles east of the old mine was made. Ore ran $200 a ton on the average, and arrangements were made to build a forty-stamp mill. A railroad was planned from Silver Peak to Liberty by way of Gold Junction, but it was never built. A reduction plant was to be built at Company Wells, and 15 miles of tramway or light railroad would easily transfer the ore to the plant. In 1906, nine claims and the spring were in a deal, and by November of that year the mill machinery was at Millers. In March 1907, a power plant was planned to run a ten-stamp mill, and enough ore was in sight to keep a fifty-stamp mill running for a number of years, it was stated. By July 1910, work resumed at the Liberty Mine and a mill of 100-ton capacity was being built. It was to be run by electricity from the Nevada-California power line to Manhattan, which passed not far from the mine. There was much low-grade ore. In January 1911, three bullion shipments were made, one of $8,000 and two about $ 10,000 each. A monthly cleanup of between $25,000 and $30,000 was expected. Twenty-five men were then working. (49) However, plans apparently fell through a short time later, and nothing more seems to have been done at the mine and mill for quite a number of years.
John Davenport found silver ore in Jett Canyon in 1876, (50) and a town bearing his name was established the next year.(51) The town was located where a branch canyon turned off to the south, about 3 miles up the main canyon. The mine lay about a mile from the town, almost on top of the ridge of mountains. In July of that year, a tunnel tapped a ledge of good ore, though it was base. Several men were working in the district and taking the ore to Jefferson to be reduced. There were several well-built cabins and a butcher shop in the town. If capital could be gotten the town would flourish, the Belmont Courier reported. In 1879 some of the property was disposed of to Eastern parties. The Jett Consolidated Silver Company's superintendent received $25,000 as a final payment and paid it out to the original owners. Work was to begin on the Continental, the most promising of a series of ledges. The main shaft ran 22 feet, and there were 5 feet of a 2 .5 - foot ledge that averaged $105 a ton. A furnace had been delivered to the mine, but a lack of fire bricks was causing a delay in getting it set up. (52)
In June 1902, a gold, silver, and lead strike averaging between S16—$8 2 per ton of ore was made. (53) During the 192os Harry Stimler started a town at the mouth of Jett Canyon. Several cabins and a boarding house were constructed. A small silver and lead mine was located on the hillside behind the town. The air line from the mine's compressor could be seen going up the dyke to the mine for many years after work ceased. The buildings were moved away after a few years. (54)
Silver was discovered in Jefferson Canyon in 1866, but no work was done there for about five years. (55) The district was first called Greenild, but at a miners' meeting held in June 1874, the name was changed to Jefferson. (56) Test ore sent to Austin yielded $28,000. The principal mines were the Jefferson and the Prussian, located in a branch canyon about one-half mile from where it joins the main canyon. These mines changed hands in 1873, and by 1874 each had its own mill. (57) The mills were built at the mouth of the branch canyon on opposite sides of the main canyon, the Prussian Mill on the left and the Jefferson Mill on the right. (58) The foundations for these mills can still be seen about a mile below where the present mill is located. The big water wheel of one of these mills still stood until a few years ago. In 1875-1876, the recorded partial production for the mines was $292,944, and the two mills are said to have produced $1 million. (59)
When the mines became active in 1874, a toll road was built over the Jefferson summit from Belmont. (60) This road is still in existence, and recently [ca. 1940] an automobile crossed from Belmont to Round Mountain, but the driver doubted if he could have made the return trip as the road has been neglected for so long. (61) The high water of last spring (1941) has now made this road entirely impassable.
By July 1874, there were 125 men reported to be living in Jefferson. Because lumber was scarce, houses of stone, with mud and willows for roofs, were built. Many of these old houses can still be seen up and down the main canyon, some in pretty good condition and others only a wall or two. Most of the lumber houses were moved from Ophir, which was not working at that time. Sawmills were set up in the Sawmill and Slaughterhouse branches of Jefferson Canyon to supply the needed lumber. Lumber, which was used in the mines as well as for some residences, also came from the sawmill in Summit Canyon, 15 miles across the valley. Some hoisting works were obtained from Ophir, but most of the machinery came from San Francisco. (62)
Two towns were built—one near the mills, and the other about three-quarters of a mile up the canyon. The lower town was established first. In October 1874 it consisted of about too houses, seven saloons, a butcher shop, a brewery, a barbershop, a lumber yard, three restaurants, two stables, one blacksmith shop, two bakeries, and two other businesses. A hotel, boarding house, and storehouse were built in the upper town because the canyon was wider there. Gradually almost everyone moved to the upper town. It was estimated that 300 people lived in the canyon and that there were 185 registered voters in October 1874. A post office was established that autumn and a justice of the peace had been appointed. In December, a Wells Fargo agent was appointed. (63)
Two stage lines ran from Belmont to Jefferson; one, the Austin mail, stayed overnight at Jefferson. In December 1874, the four-teen local ladies were taking steps to establish a school. In January 1875 , there were two hotels in the canyon. Dances were held quite often and were well attended by all the surrounding countryside. Judging from the accounts given in the Belmont Courier, they were gala affairs. By the end of December 1874, the mills were shipping S3,000 worth of bullion daily. (64)
By September 1875 many families had moved away; only five children remained, and the drugstore had been moved back to Belmont as there was not enough trade in Jefferson for it. The mines continued to look good enough that five stamps were added to the Jefferson Mill in November. This made it a fifteen-stamp mill, while the Prussian was a twenty-stamp mill. In December 1875, changes made in the furnace and the installation of a new roaster were proving successful. From 85 to 90 percent of the values were being saved, and less than one cord of wood was burned in 24 hours. It cost $2 a ton to mill the ore. (65) A fine specimen of silver ore was sent to the Centennial celebration at Philadelphia in 1876; it was considered to be the finest specimen of its kind at the exhibit. (66)
By 1876 water in the mines was causing a great deal of trouble. The ore was base and the veins were not uniform. After 1876, only leasers worked the mines. (67) The Prussian contact vein carried more gold than silver— at that time gold was worth practically nothing and silver was worth eighty cents per ounce. The mines at Jefferson had their share of mismanagement, and the financial trouble of 1876 closed them as far as the companies were concerned. (68) In 1881 it was reported that the two mills had shipped $1 million worth of bullion and had produced $200,000 in one year. (69)
Charles J. Kanrohat started the Sierra Nevada Mine in 1873 and continued to live there and work his property for the next fifty years. (70) In the eighteen months after his discovery, his mine produced more than $3 million, and one shipment of 450 bars of silver were worth $2,000 each. He was offered $20,000 for his property but wanted $100,000. Kanrohat rejected several other offers over the years—he always wanted more for his property than it was worth. The last important work done in the canyon before the discovery of Tonopah was in 1879, when $150,000 was taken out. Kanrohat continued to work his property and shipped out ore all through the years. Sometimes he shipped to Belmont, sometimes to Ophir Canyon, and sometimes to Austin. The ore never yielded less than $250 a ton and sometimes went as high as $600. One shipment to Austin was worth $464 in silver and $70 in gold. The freight by wagon for this shipment was $35 dollars per ton, and the milling charges were $25 dollars per ton, making the net value of the shipment $231.20. (71)
In October 1908, Kanrohat's mine was sold for $350,000. A cyanide test mill costing $9 million was built the next spring. (72) The ore contained silver and gold, but a sample assayed in Round Mountain was "salted." The assayers tried to convince the new owners to take some more samples before building the mill as the sample they had assayed ran far too high in gold to come from the Jefferson property. However, the new owners thought the assayers were just trying to get more work, so they went ahead and built the mill. They soon found, to their dismay, that the assayers had been right. (73)
The Tonopah Bonanza reported the strike of 1908 as assaying $103 in gold and $2.55 in silver and $106 in gold and $2.90 in silver. The mine is located on the north slope of the main canyon across from the mill. Thirty men were working on the mill, which was expected to begin operating by April I, 1909. (74) It was to be one of the biggest low-grade properties in the state. This was an-other case of building the mill before the mine was developed, and, as a result, no dividends were paid to its investors. They became discouraged, and the venture failed. In 1917 Kanrohat's mine was reopened with J. A. Carpenter as superintendent. (75)
In 1927 the mine was sold to the Peterson Lumber Company of San Francisco for $200,000. Charles Kanrohat had died a few years before this and the property had been divided between his two nephews, Herman Shapel and Fred Smith. The first payment was $3,500, and the new company was to begin about August 15. Every three months a payment of $15,000 was to be made. A thirty-stamp mill was to be installed and to begin production about September 1. The bond was to run for three years. A fleet of auto-trucks was to haul in the supplies from Tonopah.
The superintendent of the Elsa Mining Company reported that the vein ran $75 a ton and was 7-8 feet wide. A $350,000 mill was to be built the next year. Eighty tons of ore had been shipped, averaging $300—$400 a ton. There were seventy-three men on the payroll and three shifts in the mine. By December 1927 the company had spent $80,000 installing improvements, (76) which consisted of repairing existing houses, building a new house with all the modern improvements for the superintendent and his wife, laying the foundation for a huge recreation hall for the workers, building the road from Round Mountain up the canyon, and laying in a stock of supplies of food, hardware, linoleum, cooking utensils, and so on for a large town. Some money was spent in the mine, but it was a very small amount. (77)
In May 1928, the company was put on notice by its Eastern backers, who had many misgivings over the experiences of the previous summer because of a mutual lack of mining knowledge. In July, the Elsa Mining Company's option was extended, and in November the company opened an account with the Tonopah Banking Corporation. All the accounts against the company were to be liquidated, and as soon as this was done and the property cleared, work was to resume. The mill was overhauled, as a fire occurred the summer before that caused $600 worth of damage.(78) The work was never resumed.
In November 1928 the old Charles Mine, which had established a record forty years before, resumed operation. The ore contained gold and silver and went for $ oo—$2oo a ton. Ira William had discovered the ore while fixing up a park in the canyon. A surface tramway was built a distance of 500 feet to the bottom of the canyon and a truck was to take it to a 50-ton bin. The ore was to be shipped to the Mason Valley smelter.(79) This work did not last very long as the ore failed to prove worthwhile.
Today most of the supplies left by the Elsa Mining Company have been sold off by Herman Shapel to residents of Round Mountain, Manhattan, and Big Smoky Valley. A few people work in the various mines in the canyon sometimes but not for very long because none of the mines has proved profitable.
Ranching in Big Smoky,
Reese River, and
Ranching began about 1863 in Big Smoky Valley, which was first settled by H. Robinson and William Shay.(1) Perhaps they are the ones who built the stone house at Darrough's Hot Springs, which has 1863 carved on one of the foundation rocks. The hot water would keep the temperature higher there than else-where in the valley, and it is likely that the first ranching was done there.
In 1865, Indian trouble was reported in Big Smoky Valley. Captain Thurston, commander of Fort Ruby, ordered Lieutenant Tolls to investigate settlers' grievances against Indian marauders in the valley. Captain Thurston was prepared to send part of his command against the marauders, and steps were to be taken if the rights of the settlers were molested. (2)
In 1868 the Robinson brothers owned the Twin Rivers Ranch, which is situated where the streams known as North and South Twins join. The ranch covered between i,000 and 1,500 acres, of which I5o had been planted in grain. (3)
In 1878, H. Hawkins owned what later became known as Darrough's Hot Springs, and people were encouraged to go there for a basking in the sun and bathing in the warm water. (4) James Darrough took over the springs not long afterwards. Mrs. Darrough says he owned both the hot and cold springs, which are about 3 miles apart. The Belmont Courier refers to them as the Hot Springs and the Cold Springs. Darrough kept the northern part of the land, which contained the hot springs, and sold the southern portion with the cold springs to John A. Moore. There is a large meadow watered by the cold springs. (5)
After the Ophir Mine closed, in about 1880, John McLeod, the superintendent of the mine, purchased some land about miles south of Millett. (6) His oldest son runs the ranch today. G. W. Schmidtlein also purchased land about that time, just north of the mouth of Kingston Canyon.(7) Other ranches were taken up also, for Angel reports thirteen ranches in the valley in 1881. (8) Today there are about twenty-five ranches in the valley.
These ranches are located wherever a good-size stream comes down from the Toiyabe Mountains. In some cases several streams are needed to supply sufficient water for one ranch. Kingston, Twin Rivers, and Peavine supply water for two or three ranches each. Only two ranches get their water from the Toquima Range. One other did so until the water rights were sold to the mining companies at Round Mountain. Several ranches have drilled artesian wells to furnish water in addition to the streams.
Corn, vegetables, wheat, rye, alfalfa, apples, peaches, pears, apricots, strawberries, raspberries, and gooseberries are the principal crops raised. Horses, cattle, pigs, sheep, and chickens are found on almost every ranch. Only one or two ranches have very large herds of cattle. One ranch has sold several head of horses to the government and to other markets. There are no bands of sheep in the valley now, but in about 1904 and during the early 1920s there were a great many sheep. (9)
The soil in most parts of the valley is good; however, there is much alkali around the two lakes and in other parts of the valley. In some places in the valley, the sagebrush is higher than an auto-mobile. Several years ago there was talk of the government drilling wells in the valley to permit ranching for more people, as the valley could support more people if there were more water. Wet and dry spells lasting several years show up periodically. This spring there was more water in Big Smoky Valley than there has been for the past fifty years. (10)
Monitor Valley was first settled by Jacob and Samuel Stainenger in 1866. There are not so many ranches in Monitor as in Big Smoky Valley because there are not so many streams from the mountains. The crops are the same as for Smoky Valley. According to Angel, in 1881 there were eighteen ranches and fifty inhabitants in Monitor; the number of both has since decreased. (11)
Reese River Valley also was home to eighteen ranches in 1881.(12) Today most of the valley has been given over to the Yomba Indian Reservation, which was created about three years ago. The valley must be higher than Smoky Valley for it is much colder in the winter and vegetables do not grow there as well as in Smoky, it is said. The vegetables grow all right if they do not freeze, but the chances of freezing are greater than in Big Smoky Valley. Both Monitor Valley and Reese River Valley receive much more snow in winter than does Smoky. Austin is the principal market for the valleys of Reese River, northern Big Smoky, and Monitor.
The region's mining camps have always been a market for the fresh vegetables from the valley ranches. Recently it has been easier to transport vegetables from other places, such as Fallon and southern California, and the ranches now do not bring so much to town. Peddlers bring fresh fruits and vegetables to this region quite often. This merchandise usually comes from southern California. An Indian brings strawberries in the spring from his ranch in Big Smoky, and he has no difficulty selling them for they are better than any that can be shipped in.
Most of the ranches have one or two hired men. Often these are Indians, many of whom have taken the names of their white employers. Since Reese River has been turned into an Indian reservation—as has Duckwater Valley, about 100 miles east—most of the Indians have moved to one or the other valley and taken up their own ranches.
In 1908 a ten-room hotel costing $12,000 was built at Darrough's Hot Springs. (13) Up until then, the only building there was the stone house built in 1863. The Darroughs had added five wooden rooms to it and raised their seven sons there. (14) In October 1909, a candle was upset and started a fire, which burned these rooms and threatened to destroy the new hotel. (15) A bath house and several other buildings were built about the same time, and the old stone house was turned into a saloon, which it has been ever since. (16)
The Darroughs have not kept up the buildings, and they are in need of repair. A year or so ago the bath house almost fell down. The prevailing south winds had made it lean to the north. It has since been propped up. Several people have tried to take over the springs and fix it up as a resort, but no one has been able to stay there very long. More people would visit if they could get meals and if the place was repaired so they could stay overnight. Perhaps sometime it will be fixed up, for now that a highway is partly constructed through the valley, there will probably be tourist trade.
There have been as many as five different schools in Big Smoky Valley at various times and places. (17) Today there is only one because there are not enough children for more. Most of the children move into town during the winter to attend school. The school in Monitor Valley was abandoned several years ago, and there is now only one school in Reese River Valley whereas there have been three or four in times past.
Lucile beside her home in Round Mountain, late 1930s. The saddle between Round Mountain and Stebbins Peak is at left of photo. Courtesy Roger Berg.
Lucile and her parents, John and Blanch Hunsaker Berg, Round Mountain
circa 1945. Courtesy Lucile R. Berg
Mining After 1900
On May 19, 1900, (1) James L. Butler discovered gold and silver in a region he had long thought would be a good place to prospect. Butler had no doubt been told about this country around Tonopah Spring by the Indians, with whom he was on good terms, and the country interested him. When he started out to visit the strike at Southern Klondike, instead of going on down Ralston Valley from Rye Patch to Cactus Lake, he went from Rye Patch to Tonopah Spring, prospecting as he went.(2) He may have been hunting his burros and picked up rock, (3) or he may have chipped away some rock while seeking shelter from a sand storm, (4) or he may have just picked up some rock where he camped near the Gold Mountain mines and so made his discovery. (5)
Butler himself says he went on to Southern Klondyke and was there until May 26, waiting for assays from H. G. Higgs. (6) According to another story, he offered Frank Hicks a quarter interest for assaying the samples, but Hicks said that he would not give a dollar for a thousand tons of such stuff and threw the samples on the dump. (7) On the return trip, Butler took about 75 pounds of ore with him to Belmont. (8) He showed the ore to several people who did not think much of it. He then showed some to Tasker L. Oddie, a young attorney, and promised him an interest in the claims if Oddie would have assays made. Oddie sent the rock to Austin to W. C. Gayhart and promised him an interest. Gayhart made the assays, which ran from $18 to $600. (9) Gayhart eventually got $32,000 for his assay. (10) Oddie sent copies of the assays by Indian runner to Butler,(11) who was haying at his ranch in Monitor Valley.(12) Haying had to be finished before Butler could leave, and when he did go to Belmont he had official duties to attend to, as he was District Attorney.(13) These commitments delayed his return to Tonopah until August 25, 1900. (14)
News of the discovery leaked out, and there was a small rush to the Tonopah region before Butler returned in August. No one knew exactly where to look, as Butler had not put up location notices. If he had done so, he would never have had the claims he did, for the time for doing the necessary work to hold the ground had lapsed before his return and the ground would have been open for relocation. (15)
The Desert Queen was the first claim located by Butler. He then located the Burro while Mrs. Butler located the Mizpah, which later proved to be the richest of them all. The Valley View, Silver Top, Buckboard, and the Red Plume were also located. (16)
When Frank Hicks heard of the value of the strike, he fished out the original samples, assayed them, and reported the results, claiming his quarter interest. Although he had no moral or legal right to any interest, Butler gave him one thirty-second of an interest. (17) Butler's first assay ran 395 ounces in silver and 152 ounces in gold to the ton. Another assay yielded 640 ounces in silver and $206 in gold.(18)
The Tonopah discoveries were made in the Sawtooth Pass lying between San Antonio Valley and Ralston Valley and is now called the Tonopah Pass. The volcanic rim is now known as Mt. Butler (and sometimes as Mt. Oddie or Mt. Brougher), but was then called Sawtooth Peak because of its jagged outline. The black float was long ignored because it was thought to be of no value. The color was thought to be due to iron rather than to the silver and manganese that it truly contains.(19)
Some location monuments were found by Butler, but these were old and had fallen down and there were no notices on them. A Silver Peak prospector in the 1890s had found and located some black quartz ledges. He had allowed no one to accompany him. He did not return from one of his trips but the description he gave fits the Tonopah area, so probably the location monuments Butler found were these. Charlie Fisherman, a half-breed Indian, told a Silver Peak assayer, known to history only as "Van," about the black quartz ledges that he thought had gold in them. Charlie was sent out by Van and after prospecting three weeks found only one color but no rock. In 1901 Van visited Tonopah and saw Charlie working in an open cut on the Valley View Hill. Charlie told the assayer that that was the place where he had found the black quartz. (20)
In the spring of 1897, -8, or -9, Isador Sara, a sheep owner, established a camp where the town of Tonopah now is and took some samples from the Mizpah hill. He carried these samples so long that they wore a hole in the handkerchief in which he had wrapped them, and Sara threw them away. The samples must have come from the Mizpah and Valley View croppings. (21)
Early in October 1900, Butler, Oddie, and Wilse Brougher (County Recorder) returned to Tonopah with two wagonloads of supplies and a complete outfit for development work. Work was begun on one of the small ledges on the Mizpah. The hardest work fell on Oddie, who did the cooking, sharpened the tools, hauled water, and helped to sink the shaft. In the first 10 feet of the shaft, one ton of ore was hauled to Belmont—a distance of 5o miles—then 100 miles more to the railroad and thence shipped to a smelter. A second ton of ore was also shipped; together they netted $600. This was the only production for 1900. With this money, men were hired and work was begun on a larger scale. The capital investment of Butler, Oddie, and Brougher to this point was less than $25, and this was the only capital to develop the Mizpah group. (22)
The outside world was advised of the discovery at Tonopah Spring in the fall of 1900. The Belmont Courier's initial mention of Tonopah occurred on October 27. Henry C. Cutter or Cutting, of Reno, took the first lease on the Mizpah ledge in January 1901. Leases were let because there was no capital to develop the property. All leases were oral, and the owners received 25 percent of the gross output. Leases were let on the Burro, Valley View, and the Mizpah. Of the 112 leases let, 25 paid well, five or six made the holder rich, and almost all of the leasers made wages. Not more than half a dozen failed to pay expenses. The leasers started work about June 1, and the leases expired December 31, 1901. There were 800 men working when the leases expired. (23)
The production for 1901 amounted to about $4 million. The leasers were unable to ship much ore because of the lack of transportation and smelting facilities. (24) Supplies came from Sodaville, on the Carson and Colorado railroad, a distance of about 60 miles. Some ore was hauled to the railroad and shipped, but soon there began to be talk of building a mill or mills, so the ore was piled up at the mines. (25) The road went by way of Summit Springs by Crow Springs and across the valley to Tonopah, and was very sandy. (26)
By September 1901, there were 320 horses and mules hauling ore to Sodaville. That November, 45 teams were hauling ore to Sodaville. Ten days were needed to make a round trip. (27)
The population of Tonopah in May 1901 was about 250. A month later, there were about 500 people in the town, and tents were giving way to frame buildings. There were two commercial establishments, five saloons, four eating houses, four assay offices, one livery stable, two feed yards, two doctors, three barbers, one dentist, and one lodging house. Water came from a spring 3-5 miles away and was hauled to town in barrels. There were no preachers in town until August, when Reverend Arthur Hicks, of the Synodical Sabbath School Missionary of the Presbyterians, arrived and started a Sunday School. (28)
In July, funds were raised to start a school with the intent that it would be ready by November 1. Two teachers would be needed, it was thought, because of the number of children. By October, the Catholic Church had bought a lot and was getting ready to build. There were about 1,000 residents, 175 tents, and 105 frame buildings in the town, along with nine deputy sheriffs. By November, 450 men were working in the mines and the population was 1,300. The December payroll was $72,000, with nearly 600 men in the mines. (29)
The town's growth was rapid and steady except for three months just before the leases expired, when an epidemic believed to be pneumonia swept the town. (30) This so-called Tonopah Sickness affected men only and was found to be caused from the high silicate content of the ore. The victims died after a brief gasping period. Many persons fled from the town, (31) and those planning to come changed their minds. The Tonopah Miner complained that the sickness was greatly exaggerated by the outside world and countered that the climate of Tonopah was very healthy. About 40 people died from this sickness. (32)
Wood was scarce in the new town, costing $15 a cord. Water was $1.50 a barrel, milk was eighty cents a gallon, chickens were $1 apiece, board was $35 a month, and washing was $3.50 for a dozen pieces of clothing. In December 1901, Tonopah claimed over 500 buildings; of these, eighteen were saloons, two were banks, twelve were restaurants, and two were hotels. There were also two drug stores, five doctors, numerous lawyers, one newspaper (the Tonopah Bonanza), two stages—to Sodaville and Candelaria—a church, a school of 8o pupils, and a miners' union of 600 members. Two telephone lines were being built.(33)
Because the spring north of town did not furnish enough water for the population and the mines, some wells were dug south of Tonopah to furnish additional water. In August 1902, there was a great deal of talk of getting water from the streams of Big Smoky Valley. The first of these considered was Peavine Creek. The water was to be piped to Tonopah, a distance of 31 1/2 miles. There was also talk of bringing water from Twin Rivers, a distance of 6o miles. The survey for this latter pipeline was begun in August; that October, the water rights were sold to Tonopah interests by A. B. Millett. On October 18, the order was given to cease all work on the Twin Rivers project.(34) Instead, the water was taken from Rye Patch, a distance of only I7 miles. Fifty wells were dug and a pumping plant was installed. Water from Rye Patch reached Tonopah about June 1904.(35) An ice plant of two-ton capacity began deliveries about June 1,1902. Before this, ice had to be transported from the Truckee region. (36)
In 1903, a curfew bell was to be rung at 8 p.m. from April 1 to September 1, and at 7:30 p.m. from September 1 to April 1. All children had to be off the streets at that time unless accompanied by their parents. (37) Today curfew is at 9 p.m. and rather than a bell, a whistle is blown.
On July 4, 1903, T. L. Oddie and a party made the trip from Sodaville to Tonopah in 5 1/2 hours in the first automobile to arrive in Tonopah. They averaged nearly 12 miles an hour and attained a speed of 8 miles an hour through the deepest sand. (38) It wasn't long until the automobile was vying with the horse and wagon to haul passengers and freight to and from Tonopah. It took longer for the automobile to replace the horse in hauling freight than passengers.
In 1902, Tonopah tried unsuccessfully to win the county seat from Belmont by an act of the legislature. City leaders threatened to create a new county if Tonopah did not get the county seat but made a second attempt in 1904—and this time was successful. The county seat was moved to Tonopah on May 1, 1905. The cornerstone for a two-story stone courthouse was laid in June 1905 on Gold Hill. (39) The question of whether Tonopah was in Nye or Esmeralda County was settled in 1902 by a survey that proved Tonopah to be just inside the Nye County line; however, part of the Tonopah mining district lay in Esmeralda County. In March 1905, there was talk of splitting Nye County in two. (40)
The Tonopah Mining Company began active work in 1902, (41) and the ground for a ten-stamp mill was broken in May 1903. The Kinkead Mill, located 4 miles north of Tonopah, began operating that July. From 6o to 70 percent of the values were saved in the mill by concentrating, and 6o percent of the value of the tailings were saved by cyanide; thus, about 90 percent of the total value of the ore was saved. (42) Charles Schwab, a steel magnate from Philadelphia, visited Tonopah in April 1904 and was astonished at the wealth of the mines. Predicting a great future for the town, he soon began to invest in Tonopah. (43) In January 1904, a new custom mill, costing about $85,000 to build, began operations. It was declared to be the most complete and modern mill in the world at that time. The cost was high due to the heavy rates on the railroad and the 6o-mile haul by team. (44)
In November 1904, the Tonopah Bonanza described a freight team that was then hauling in lumber and hauling out ore: A twenty-two animal team pulled three wagons and a trailer. Two horses were used as wheelers; the rest of the animals were mules. The animals alone were valued at nearly $3,000. The wagons had 6- and 8-inch wheels, the biggest of which were 6 feet in diameter. The outfit (wagons and trailer) was valued at $5,000. It cost $1 a day to feed each animal, and the average load carried was one ton to an animal. (45)
In December 1904, a power company was ready to bring power from Mono Lake in California to Tonopah and Goldfield, a distance of 120 miles. This is now the Nevada-California Power Company. The first cows were brought to Tonopah in 1904. A cloudburst washed out the railroad track west of Tonopah in August 1904 and prevented railroad deliveries for nearly a week. This still happens occasionally, but the highways into Tonopah keep it from being as isolated as it then was. (46)
In 1905 a proposal to incorporate the town with James Butler as its first mayor was defeated. The post office was called "Butler" and the town "Tonopah" until 1905, and much confusion resulted from this. A six-room two-story school was completed in 1905, and the next year the Standard Oil Company built a plant in town. (47)
Two other towns sprang up overnight 3 miles northeast of Tonopah when diamonds were supposedly found in 1905. The diamonds proved to be only silica, and the towns quickly died. (48) In 1907, a stampede to Millers occurred when rich gold was found while digging a well. This turned out to be a practical joke, as one of the diggers, to have some fun with his friend, sprinkled Round Mountain gold dust in the dump. Another friend, a Klondyke miner, panned it and, when the news came out, a stampede took place. The owner of the well knew nothing about what was happening until he read about it in the paper. Investigation brought the story of the "joke" to light. (49)
A disastrous fire occurred in Tonopah in 1908, causing $150,000 worth of damage, and was claimed to have been set. The flames could be seen as far as Goldfield and Coaldale. Goldfield sent firefighting apparatus, but by the time it arrived, the Tonopah firefighters had the fire pretty well under control. Several fires took place in the early years of the town's history; one, which destroyed much of upper Main Street, did $94,000 worth of damage.(50) Fires have occurred since then, but none have been so disastrous.
In September 1908, construction on the five-story Mizpah Hotel was begun. Though not completed, it opened its doors on November 17, 1908.(51)The third story was finished in August 1909, and all five stories were in place a few years later. The hotel cost 8200,000 to complete.(52) Another five-story building was constructed diagonally across from the hotel, housing a bank, various offices, and, in the past few years, apartments on the top floor.
Throughout Nevada's history, whenever a new camp sprang up it usually wanted the county seat moved to it. If this was not done, the threat to split the county usually came. In 1909, when Rhyolite was booming, it wanted the county seat moved from Tonopah and threatened to split the county. Beatty, nearby, was not at all in favor of Rhyolite being the county seat nor of the proposed split, for it said Rhyolite's administrators would not keep their promises.(53)
Prospecting under the barren capping surrounding Tonopah's original claims led to the discovery of veins as valuable as those in the ground of the Tonopah Mining Company, which enabled other companies to get holdings—and thus the possibilities of Tonopah were enlarged. In 1906 the Desert Power and Milling Company constructed a 100-stamp mill at Millers, 13 miles west on the Tonopah railroad, to treat the ore of the Tonopah Mining Company. The next year the Tonopah-Belmont Development Company built a sixty-stamp mill at Millers. The Tonopah Extension Mill of thirty stamps began operating in Tonopah in 1910 and was later enlarged to fifty stamps. The Montana-Tonopah Development Company built a forty-stamp mill of all-sliming type in Tonopah, (54) and the West End (Borax Smith's), a similar thirty-stamp mill, was built in 1911. This latter mill was designed, built, and operated for six years by Jay A. Carpenter.(55)
The Tonopah-Belmont Mill at Millers was closed in 1909 because it was not paying. That December, there was talk of moving the mill to Tonopah. Instead, in 1912 the company built a sixty-stamp mill in Tonopah; the MacNamara ten-stamp mill was also built that year.(56) In 1913 a huge two-story brick-and-glass power plant was built for the Tonopah Extension. It was then the largest plant of its kind west of the Mississippi. During the summer of 1941 it was torn down and shipped to North Carolina to be used in national defense work. (57)
In 1921 four Tonopah mills were included in the U.S. Geological Survey's list of twenty-five of the largest producers of silver in the United States. The total production for the years 1900 to 1921 was $120,490,863 from 6,351,820 tons of ore.(58) In February 1911, a big fire occurred in the Tonopah-Belmont mine (59) another fire occurred in the spring of 1940. In about 1938, the companies quit working the mines and let them out to leasers.
The 1940 census gave 1,673 as the population for the town proper and 2,449 as the population for the Tonopah township.(60) The fact that Tonopah is the county seat and is the railroad terminus for the surrounding countryside, including Round Mountain and Manhattan, has helped the town retain its population. Since the bombing base was established there a year or so ago, the town is more lively than it has been for some time.
In November 1901, there was talk of three different railroads extending service to Tonopah. The first of these was the San Pedro, the second was the Nevada Central, and the last was the Carson and Colorado. (61) The challenge was easiest for the latter railroad, which already had service closest to Tonopah and had no high mountains to cross.
In 1904, the Tonopah Mining Company built a narrow-gauge railroad from Sodaville on the Carson and Colorado to Tonopah. (62) The first passenger train reached Tonopah on July 24, and a celebration was held there July 25-27. (63) The celebratory gold-and silver spike that completed the route was made of Tonopah ore.(64) Originally called the Tonopah Railroad, after being extended to Goldfield that fall it was known as the Tonopah and Goldfield Railroad. There was talk of putting in a third rail for broad-gauge trains,(65) as the Southern Pacific branch line had just changed to broad-gauge, but the narrow-gauge track was replaced with broad-gauge and the first broad-gauge train reached Tonopah on August 7, 1905.(66) The Tonopah and Goldfield shops were first built in Tonopah, but when they burned down in December 1909 they were rebuilt in Goldfield.(67)
A railroad was extended south from Goldfield to Bullfrog, which was very active at that time, reaching Bullfrog in April or May 1907.(68) It was known as the Bullfrog and Goldfield Railroad. "Borax" F. M. Smith intended to build a railroad to Death Valley, Goldfield, and Tonopah, and also one to Las Vegas, but the Clark interests beat him to the latter in 1906, and the Las Vegas and Tonopah (LV&T) Railroad began building.(69) A race ensued between these two interests, and the LV&T reached Goldfield on November 2, 1907, while the Smith railroad reached Bullfrog on October 30, 1907.(70) Smith made an agreement with the Bullfrog and Goldfield (B&G) Railroad to use its track, and thus he reached Goldfield about the same time as the LV&T. The Smith railroad and the B&G were consolidated soon after and known as the Tonopah and Tidewater (T&T) Railroad!(71) The first train from Los Angeles over the T&T reached Tonopah in the early part of December 1907, in seventeen hours and ten minutes. (72)
There was not enough business for the two railroads, and both were financial losses. The LV&T was abandoned about 1918, and its right of way between Las Vegas and Beatty was sold to the Nevada Highway Department and later made into a highway.(73) The T&T struggled along a few years more, but in 1928 the B&G route was foreclosed and abandoned.(74) In 1939 the T&T was ordered abandoned, but service continued until March 1940 with one train a week to Beatty.(75) Now it seems that the T&T will have a new lease on life, for a proposed railroad from Luning to Las Vegas for hauling magnesium ore to the new plant at Las Vegas may be able to use part of it. If the LV&T and the B&G had delayed tearing up their tracks as did the T&T, there would be a direct railroad line to Las Vegas from Luning going by way of the Southern Pacific Railroad from Luning to Tonopah Junction, then to Goldfield by the Tonopah and Goldfield (T&G), thence to Beatty by the B&G, and on to Las Vegas by the LV&T. Such a connection would be valuable for defense purposes to carry the ore to where the power is available from Boulder Dam.(76)
For the past few years, Tonopah has had only one steam train a week from Reno. The rest of the time a gas speeder is used, which carries about ten passengers. Sometimes a larger car, similar to a trolley car in appearance, is used.
Other railroads into Tonopah were talked about but never materialized. In 1903 there was talk of the Southern Pacific Railroad building a route through Eureka to Tonopah.(77)There was also talk, in 1904, of building the Sierra Railroad from San Francisco to Angel's Camp, through the Sonora Pass to Bridgeport and on to Goldfield and Tonopah,(78) and, in 1903, of building the Nevada Central from Austin to Tonopah. One plan for this road was to build it from Ledlie in Reese River Valley, over the Railroad Pass into Smith Valley, down along the Shoshone Mountains, through the Ione Valley, and on to Millers. Another plan was to build the railroad up Reese River Valley, through Cloverdale, and thence on to Tonopah. This latter route had been surveyed in 1880. (79)
There was also talk of building the railroad from Austin down Big Smoky Valley.(80) This was a popular discussion following the construction of the mines at Round Mountain and Manhattan in 1905 and 1906. The railroad had Philadelphia backers, was to be standard gauge, and was expected to start service in 1907. Feeder lines were to be built to the rich new camps of Round Mountain and Manhattan, and it was thought that the new tracks would probably connect with the Smith railroad.(81) There was also talk of laying track from Tonopah to Manhattan, up the Manhattan canyon.(82) A railroad route was surveyed from Tonopah up Big Smoky Valley to Ely.(83) A railroad from Ely to Tonopah was proposed in 1911, following about the same course that U. S. Highway 6 follows now. This road was popularly expected to be built in a very short time, and there was much rivalry between Tonopah and Goldfield as to which should be the terminus of the railroad. It was decided that each town should have a branch, but the railroad was never bats.(84)
Those disappointed with their fortunes in Tonopah began prospecting in all directions nearby, a few finding something worth-while, others finding nothing. Harry Stimler, a half-breed Indian, and William Marsh, grubstaked by Butler,(85) were two who found success at Goldfield, about 25 miles southeast of Tonopah, on December 22, 1902.(86) The first discoveries were made on the Sandstorm and Kendall (87) and were located about 11/2 miles from Rabbit Springs. Many of the new discoveries had pah as part of their name (such as Tonopah), and because Stimler and Marsh's discovery was thought to be the grandest, they first named it "Grandpa."(88) Its name was soon changed to Goldfield.
Montezuma, a thriving camp in the 1870s, was about 5 miles west of the Goldfield strike. Prospectors had in fact traveled over this region for years, as they had over the Tonopah area, but had not thought the outcroppings worth bothering about until Butler's discovery.(89) Two other towns were established nearby: Columbia, first called Stimler, and Diamondfield.(90) By the end of 1903, Goldfield and Columbia had post offices,(91) the latter being abandoned about 1912. Goldfield's first newspaper, the Goldfield Sun, began publishing in April 1904. By May of that year the town was home to 18-20 adobe buildings, and by June some 2,000 people were living in the locality. Early construction of an electric light plant was announced. Wood was cheaper than in Tonopah, and a well had been sunk near camp to supply water. Even so, after one and a half years, Goldfield had no graveyard.(92)
Unfavorable reports came from the Goldfield mines at first. It was stated that the veins were merely stringers, if any gold was found at all. The ore came in porphyry and, as it had never been found in that formation before, the prediction was that the camp was "no good."(93) After a brief excitement early in 1903, most of the prospectors left.(94) Stimler and Marsh found rich float and black quartz early in the summer of 1903 and uncovered a 20-foot ledge on the Sandstorm claim that averaged $6o in free gold. They kept this a secret until nine claims had been staked for the Grandpa Company. When the secret was known, a rush began to locate ground, and work began in earnest that fall.(95)
Millions of dollars worth of ore came from the mines in an area smaller than a city block. Ore sold for more than $12,000 a ton-47 tons of ore was worth more than a half-million dollars. There was more "high grading"—that is, smuggling out ore by miners—in Goldfield than in any other camp, because the ore was so rich and there seemed so much of it. It was thought legitimate, by many, to high-grade. A piece no bigger than a small match box contained enough gold to buy a high-priced suit. Native gold could be seen without a magnifying glass. The miners used several methods to secret the ore from the mine, including carrying it out in their lunch boxes. A better method was to wear two shirts and sew the bottoms together, then hide the ore between the layers. The disposal was harder than the getting. Sometimes the "high-grade" was sold for cash as it was, and sometimes it was melted down into bullion and sold, although some assayers refused to do this. "High grading" was minimized after the mining companies took to working their ground themselves instead of leasing it, and by the use of "change" rooms underground. In these rooms the men stripped to the skin in one room and passed through a narrow doorway into another room to get their street clothes.(96)
In 1908 Goldfield was home to nearly 30,000 people.(97) The high point in production was reached in 1910 when nearly a $ million a month was produced.(98) As the mines increased in depth, the veins pinched out and the town declined. In 1906, a fire destroyed most of the downtown section. Some of it was rebuilt, but another fire a few years later again destroyed the downtown section.(99) Two big fires in one day in January 1911 resulted in losses of $25,000 and $50,000.(100) Today great gaps, sometimes filled with ruins of buildings, dot the downtown section. Cloudbursts have added their destructiveness. One of the finest hotels between the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Coast [the Goldfield Hotel] was built in 1907-1908. It is a three-story brick-and-concrete modern structure and cost $500,000.(101)
Goldfield had a great deal of labor trouble in 1907. The Indus-trial Workers of the World (IWW) union was strong there and stopped all work in October.(102) The mining had been carried on by leasers because the companies did not trust the mines. The leases, which were of short duration, expired early in 1907 and resulted in much robbing of the mines.(103) The first strike was caused when the companies attempted to halt the high-grading. After six weeks the miners returned to work but no agreement had been reached. The 1907 Panic caused workers to be paid in certificates because no money could be had. This caused another walkout. There was some violence, or at least a fear of violence, and seven companies of troops were sent from San Francisco, more or less as a precautionary measure. A federal commission was sent to investigate, and all but two companies of troops were withdrawn.(104) The trouble took a long time to be settled as there was no unity among the operators on their demands, and the workers struck at the slightest excuse and often with no notification.(105) The mine owners came out victorious in the strike, and the last of the troops were withdrawn in March 1908.(106)
In 1905, when the Tonopah Railroad was extended to Gold-field, the population was about 8,000.(107) On May I, 1907, Gold-field became the county seat of Esmeralda County. Hawthorne did not like this, and in 1911, Mineral County was created from the northwest portion of Esmeralda County, with Hawthorne as county seat.(108) Gasoline was thirty-nine cents a gallon in cans in Goldfield in 1908 and thirty cents a gallon in tanks.(109)
The Goldfield Consolidated Mines Company, the principal company in camp, was organized by George Wingfield and Senator George S. Nixon in 1906, and its 100-stamp mill was completed in 1908. From 1904 to 1918 Goldfield was the most important gold-producing district in the state. By 1918 the large ore body was exhausted, and production fell off rapidly.(110) About 1930, Bradshaw and Silver built a mill to handle the tailings and did well. They moved their mill to Millers about a year ago to work the tailings there and are now, in 1941, about ready to begin work. (111)
Ray was discovered in February 1902 some 12 miles northeast of Tonopah near the Tonopah Laundry [Laundry Springs]. It assayed about $240, and there were thought to be 25 leasers working there. A rush occurred, and by the last of February, nearly 200 miners were at work. In March, $400 ore was found and the mine increased in value as it went down. Ore was to be shipped as soon as a wagon road was built. The place was named for Judge Ray, who had long been interested in that particular region. In April 1902, ten men were working for the Ray Mining Company, and in August 1903, two gasoline hoists were ordered. In December 1904, gold, silver, and turquoise were found in the mine. In November 1908, it was thought that a new mill would be installed at the Mogul Mine at Ray.(112) This mine, like so many others, was only a flash in the pan and has not been heard of for the past 25 years or more.
The region east of Tonopah has every so often had a strike. In the 1860s and 1870s such towns as Tybo and Reveille were discovered and worked for a time. (113) Tybo means "white man" in Shoshone, and Reveille was named for the Austin newspaper, the Reese River Reveille. After the discovery at Tonopah, these towns were revived. Reveille was revived in 1904 and worked intermittently for a few years. Tybo also worked intermittently about the same time; (114) in the 1920s the Treadwell-Yukon Company took it over and it be-came very active for a number of years, employing about 140 men. These camps were silver producers. Mrs. Catherine Anderson cooked at Tybo for a time during the 1920s, in the same boarding house her mother had operated in 1876.(115)
In July 1902, a discovery was made at Hannapah, 2 miles north of (Mc)Kinney Tanks, lying 16-18 miles east of Tonopah. (116) It shipped ore in 1908-1909 and again in 1914. In 1915 there was a brief boom in the southern part of the district, which was called Volcano. Silverzone is the name applied to the district recently. Ore was shipped from there to the Belmont Mill in Tonopah in 1922. (117)
In December 1904, a strike was made in the Kawich Range southeast of Tonopah in the Goldreed district. A small boom occurred but soon subsided. In May 1905, a strike was made at Silverbow,(118) which had first been found in 1904. The first shipment took place in 1906, and in 1913 a two-stamp mill was built. It was active during 1920 when ore was treated in a 20-ton Gibson mill, but the mill shut down in 1921.(119)
The Cliffords, who had a ranch at Stone Cabin, about 30 miles east of Tonopah, were often the discoverers of these strikes. In November 1905, they made a strike near Stone Cabin (120) and established the town of Clifford, 35 miles from Tonopah on the state highway to Ely.(121) A stage was established from Tonopah to Clifford in January 1909 .(122) Their one strike that seemed the best at the time and caused the most comment was made in May 1909 at Salisbury Wash. Quite a mystery surrounded this discovery, and many conflicting stories came from there. Some affirmed that the Cliffords had made no discovery, for the Cliffords it seemed would not show either the ore or the place from which the ore came. Some people declared that the Cliffords could not show it until they (the Cliffords) had recorded the location. Others said that the Cliffords showed the spot from which it was reported the values came, but on being panned no values were found. Some believed the strike must be on the old Breyfogle Mine, which was located somewhere in that region, although no one knew just where. (123)
After a time the town of Ellendale was established a few miles from Salisbury Wash. Water for the town was obtained 3 miles away. Some thought the camp might be a silver producer instead of a gold producer because of the ore found. After lots were sold in the town there was not much excitement nor work either. In July 1909, many leases were let, but no work went on to determine if the values went beyond the surface. The Tonopah newspapers reported streams of people rushing to Ellendale at the beginning, and two papers for the town were published in Tonopah. A wire connected the two towns. Some of the Tonopah newspaper editors were dubious about the strike, and their concerns proved true. Nothing worthwhile was found, and Ellendale quietly passed out of the picture. (124)
The town of Silver Peak has been revived three or four times. It was established in 1864 by the Robinson brothers, and a ten-stamp mill was brought there in 1865 from Reese River. A thirty-stamp mill was built in 1867 and ran for two years. Silver Peak worked intermittently from then until 1906 when the Pittsburg Silver Peak Gold Mining Company took over the mines and built a railroad from Blair Junction on the Tonopah and Goldfield Rail-road to Silver Peak, a distance of 17 1/2 miles. In 1907 the company operated a 100-stamp cyanide mill at Blair (Junction). In 1910 twenty stamps were added to the Blair mill, which was then the largest stamp mill in Nevada, and for a few years the Pittsburg Silver Peak Gold Mining Company was the largest producer of low-grade ore in the state. In 1915 all work was suspended, the mill was moved to California, and the railroad was torn up. Eight miles west of Silver Peak, Tom Fisherman (Indian) in 1907 established the Nivloc Mine. (125)
In the 1920s, the Lucky Boy Divide Company took a lease from the Pittsburg Silver Peak Gold Mining Company and planned a 100-ton cyanide mill. (126) The town was quiet again after a few years, until work resumed in about 1936. Nearly 200 men were working in Silver Peak and almost as many at the Nivloc Mine and the Mary Mine, about 8 miles north of Silver Peak. Houses were moved in from Round Mountain and Tonopah, and an extra teacher had to be hired to handle the increase in school children. An oiled road was built from U.S. Hwy. 6 turning off at Blair and following very much the same route as the Silver Peak railroad. The activity grew less after a few years, until only one mine was left working; this fall, 1941, the mill at Silver Peak burned. Silver Peak may well revive again as it has in the past. The large Cord Mill of the Mary Mine near Silver Peak is running, as is the Desert Silver at the old Nivloc Mine. (127)
The Old Manhattan district was established in May 1867, about 16 miles southwest of Belmont near Timber Mountain. Little work was done there, although an incline shaft was put down 40 feet.(1) In May 1877, a rich prospect of lead and silver was found, and that June, the district was organized as the Eagle district at Manhattan Spring, the Old Manhattan district having been abandoned. A town was established in a gulch running toward Timber Mountain, near the spring,(2) which today is known as Mustang Spring.(3) In 1906 an issue of the Tonopah Bonanza printed part of an article written by James Gordon Allen, a resident of Old Manhattan, who said that when he lived there, in the early 1870s, flour sold for $16 a pound, the population was about 2,500, and three mines were working. Ore as high as $2,500 in silver was taken out before the town was deserted because of financial trouble of the mining company and the fall in the price of silver. Old Manhattan was said to have produced $200,000 in its day.(4) In 1879, it was thought that the Old Manhattan district would come to the front, for those who owned claims there were to begin work shortly. The ore was free milling and abundant.(5) T L. Oddie bought the property in 1899 and did a little work there.(6)
Today the remains of two or three stone cabins can be seen, but there is no indication of any machinery there. Charlie Humphrey disputes Allen's recollection of Manhattan's population, saying that it was more likely just 25 people. No mention of any such town is made in the Belmont Courier, and it is reasonable to suppose if Old Manhattan had been such a town it would have been mentioned in 1874 when the Courier started, even though the town might have been deserted by that time.
For years travel had gone from Belmont by way of the Manhattan canyon to Peavine and Cloverdale. Some of the Belmont machinery was hauled over this road from Sacramento. The Humphreys, who had a ranch at Peavine, were well acquainted with that section of the country, having driven cattle over it for many years. While looking for cattle on April 4, 1905, John C. Humphrey found some rock he thought might have values in it and staked five claims. These claims were located about 3 miles up the canyon from Old Manhattan. E. E. Seylor was given a half interest for getting the rock assayed; it came in at $4.82. Frank and John Humphrey, along with the property owners—Seylor and George Maute—returned that June to do the location work. While eating lunch, John Humphrey broke off some rock from a ledge and was surprised to find it covered with gold. This was on the April Fool claim. This new find assayed 1,000 ounces in silver and $ 10 gold, while a 12-foot ledge nearby assayed $50 in silver, $ 8 in gold, and 68 percent lead. (7)
When news of this discovery got out, much excitement was stirred up, and the first boom of Manhattan was on. The boom did not get well started until about the first of 1906. However, by August 1905, eight townsites had been planned, 25 leases had been given out by John Humphrey and Seylor, 500 people were believed to be in the district, and more than 5o tents could be seen. (8) The original settlement at Palo Alto, located at the edge of the valley between the present road into Manhattan and the dredge, was abandoned that August. The town was located there first because of a spring known to the cattlemen as Bull Spring. The water was not good, and a better location up the canyon became the permanent town.(9) Because of its location among the mountains covered with pine, Manhattan has often been called "The Pine-tree Camp."(10) No water was at hand, and there was talk of piping water from Pablo Canyon, 15 miles across Big Smoky Valley, but water was accidentally found nearby while sinking a shaft. (11)
The Tonopah Bonanza admitted that facts concerning Manhattan were hard to get and there was some exaggeration. In September 1905, Fitz-James McCarthy of Tonopah visited Manhattan and reported that while there was extensive location—an estimated 3,000 claims had been staked—only about half of them had the required location work done. Two townsites had been located, and about 300 people were there. No rich mine had been found yet, but the indications justified the expectations. Some people were dissatisfied because they had not gotten in on the discoveries. Twenty people were applying daily for transportation to Manhattan. (12)
In September, Humphrey and Seylor found a ledge of gold-bearing rock which assayed at $10,000. Rock coming from a 5-foot ledge on lease No. II on the April Fool, weighing about a pound and plastered with coarse gold, assayed $150, 000 to the ton. Lease No. 6 had 50 sacks of ore that averaged $288 to the ton. Ore from No. 3 went $430 to the ton. The first shipment of 10 tons, averaging over $2,000 to the ton, went out in October under guard, and this brought many people to the camp. In November a strike was made 1 1/2 miles southwest of the Humphrey-Seylor ledge, averaging $2,200 to the ton, in a width of 2 feet. In December, a 14-mule team took 265 sacks of ore, or about 12 tons, which averaged $1,000 to the ton, from the Harry Hudson lease. (13)
There was a great deal of litigation over some of the mining property. One portion of the district, where the first strikes were made, had so much trouble about the overlapping of claims that it was called Litigation Hill. (14) A suit that started over some property on this hill in 1905 was not settled for three years. In 1907 an attempt was made to settle it by a merger of companies, but in January 1908, a new trial was ordered, and in March of that year it was finally settled by an appeal to the Nevada Supreme Court.(15) The state mining laws were declared a farce by the Tonopah Bonanza, and trouble arose when people tried to get claims on technicalities. There was also trouble from claim jumpers, and the mine owners held a meeting at which they decided to hang claim jumpers. (16)
In January 1906, J. H. Sims sued Humphrey and Seylor for a half interest in their property, which he claimed was to pay for the assays Seylor had had made. Sims had asked for his interest in October but had been refused. When Humphrey and Seylor were getting ready to sell their property, Sims asked the court to enjoin them. That April, the case was dismissed and nonsuit was granted the defendants. (17)
By October 1905 the town had five saloons, three boarding houses, lodging houses, a general store, about 70 tents, and four wooden buildings. By December, there were about 700 residents and 75 frame buildings. A four-horse stage to Tonopah, 45 miles south, was soon to be established, with a station at Spanish Springs, 8 miles from Manhattan. Lumber was in great demand; two 14-animal teams would bring in lumber from Tonopah, all of which was sold in a few minutes. The district was about 7 miles long and 1 1/2 miles wide. The town itself was about 2 miles long and nearly half a mile wide. Houses were going up all the time, and the town claimed 1,000 residents by the last of December. Two mills were expected to be built within the coming two months: (18)
Nelson Rounsevell gives a very vivid account of Manhattan at this time in his book Life Story of W. R." He arrived in Manhattan on January 2, 1906, about eleven o'clock at night, after traveling since daylight from Tonopah by a four-horse stage. There was no established road, and accidents were common. Passage had to be obtained in advance. (19)
The main street of Manhattan followed the twistings and windings of the narrow canyon in which it is built. The few houses there were not over two weeks old and were all of one story. The town contained "saloons, restaurants, lodgings, gambling house, brokerage offices, general stores, a couple of banks and a post office." The rest of the buildings were tents with board floors. Those measuring ten by eight feet or ten by twelve feet served as residences. Two townsites were staked out, and the lots were sold and resold on paper titles. The camp had sprung up in 3o days' time because of a rich discovery of free gold on the surface and "picture gold" from a prospect hole. (20)
The leading saloon of the town was the Horseshoe, constructed half of boards and half of tenting. A long bar of pine boards was on one side of the room, over which bottled beer and straight whiskey were sold 24 hours a day. Opposite the bar were roulette, craps, blackjack, and faro tables. A restaurant at the rear served steaks, ham and eggs, coffee, pork and beans, hot cakes, bread, and canned peaches. The table was another pine board, and tall stools served for chairs. There were no napkins, finger bowls, or silverware. Canned milk was opened by one blow of a cleaver. The food was good, but prices were high. A steak cost $1. (21)
Rounsevell got acquainted with Lester W Hawarth, publisher of the Manhattan Mail, by buying him a drink. Hawarth had been in camp two weeks and had just put up a small building and acquired some supplies for his newspaper using money given him by friends. Rounsevell spent his first night in Manhattan in the newspaper building with newspapers for a mattress and an over-coat for cover. The next day he sold an advertisement to Dan Ryan for his new saloon, the Stray Dog Bar, for $20 and began his day with a drink and breakfast. He then sold an advertising contract and bought a lot that sold within a week for three times what had been paid for it. A man's word was as good as a document.(22)
Jake Goodfriend wanted a dance hall built in twelve days and told Rounsevell, who was a carpenter, he could have the job building it if he could do it in that period of time. Rounsevell was to be paid $15 o a day and could hire all the men he needed. Rounsevell took the job. Goodfriend showed by marks on the ground how big the hall was to be and where the rooms for the eighteen girls were to be located. It would take seven days to get the furnishings from Goldfield. (23)
The lumberyard was a few piles of boards, planks, and two-by-fours. A tent served as the Tonopah Lumber Company's office. Lumber was selling as fast as it was dumped. The merchandise of the Nye County Mercantile Company lay scattered around its tent waiting for shelves to be put up. In one corner of the tent was the Wells Fargo Express Company, and in another corner was a branch of the State Bank and Trust Company of Tonopah. The manager of the Nye County Mercantile Company was told to give Rounsevell whatever he needed. (24)
Rounsevell worked far into the night to plan the next day's work, writing it on wrapping paper with a lead pencil. The last strips of corrugated iron were being put on when Goodfriend arrived with his load of furnishings, which were crowded into the building and arranged late in the afternoon. The Tonopah stage brought the girls. Kerosene lamps were hung from the ceiling. The crowd gathered and the saloon was opened. Hawarth sold an advertisement for the opening of this dance hall for $100 that appeared in the first issue of the Manhattan Mail. The opening of saloons, dance halls, or gambling houses were then daily occurrences, and no one ever missed any of them. Jake Goodfriend's dance hall was used as a schoolhouse after the boom broke and the crowds were gone.(25)
In January 1906, an auto passenger line was established between Tonopah and Manhattan, making the trip every other day. The usual route was over the Manhattan summit, but when that had too much snow on it, travel went by way of San Antonio. It took two and a half hours to complete either route in 1909. By February 1, 1906, Manhattan had a drugstore—moved from Tonopah—a barbershop, and also branches of the Tonopah Banking Corporation and the Nye and Ormsby Counties Bank, the latter occupying the first stone building in Manhattan. (The bank building was later used as a post office and continued in that capacity until 1940.) The fixtures for a bakery were on the way, an assay office was soon to be open, and a laundry was badly needed. A transfer company was organized to do all sorts of draying and hauling, especially ore from the mines. A branch of the Montana Grocery of Tonopah was set up, and the post office was established. Incorporation papers were filed for the Manhattan Electric Light, Power, and Telephone Company, and it was considered likely that lights would be installed within sixty days. (26)
The town was about seven blocks long, and several two-story buildings were under construction; soon, it was thought, both sides of the main street would be built in solid with buildings. Lots were selling for $3,000 that had been bought for $75 only a short while before. By March of that year, two clerks were needed to handle the business at the post office. Some Reno people were organizing another bank. Two six-horse stages and fast freight lines made daily trips from Tonopah. A stone jail, 26 by 18 feet with 2-foot walls, and two steel cells moved from Belmont, was erected. No such boom as this had been seen since that at Bodie in 1879. (27)
In February 1906, the Miners Union accepted the following wage scale: drifting, stoping, trenching, $4.50; sinking, raising, $5.00; wet working, 50 cents extra; tool dresser, blacksmith, $5.50 timberman (no helper), $5.00; machine work, 50 cents more than hand work; engineers, $5.50; contract work, $1.00 more than company work; eight-hour shifts; and carpenters, $8.00 after February 1 (instead of the $19 - $20 they had been getting).(28) The Manhattan miners refused to join the Goldfield I.W.W. in 1907, and there was not a great deal of labor trouble in Manhattan, although in October of that year a Manhattan committee did all in its power to keep Slays and other recent immigrants from being employed in the mines. (29)
It was thought in February 1906 that mills would soon be built, as they were much needed with 200 leases being worked. There was some suffering due to lack of shelter and because of snow, but everyone seemed happy and busy. Tonopah and Goldfield operators were buying a lot of Manhattan stock—which was more difficult to buy than sell. Three miles to the east, ore was discovered and the town of East Manhattan was established, containing about 75 people, two stores, two saloons, and a restaurant. They applied for a post office, and a contract for a five-stamp mill to be erected within four weeks was let the last of March. Plans for bringing water to Manhattan from Jett and Shipley canyons at a cost of $200,000 were made. The preliminary survey for the railroad from Goldfield Junction to Manhattan up the Manhattan canyon was made in February. The telephone from Austin was expected to be completed by the middle of March. (30)
The earthquake in San Francisco in April 1906 had a disastrous effect on Manhattan. So many of Manhattan's property owners were from San Francisco or had interests there that they immediately withdrew their support from Manhattan and rushed back to San Francisco. Manhattan was almost depopulated by the end of two weeks. The ore pinched out at about 12—I5 feet, and many said that the ore was just on the surface. This also hurt the camp. However, a few believers held on, went deeper, and found values. In May, about 100 people remained in the town. (31)
In June, a stampede was made to Bronx, 5 miles south of Manhattan near Indian Spring, and a rich strike also occurred on the Monte Carlo at the foot of Timber Hill, a short distance from the Old Manhattan mine. A $400 specimen one and a half inches wide was picked out by nail file from the Mustang stringer. In August, the Little Grey was to have a mill, getting its water from Jett, 14 miles away; another mill was planned for Central, 3 miles down the Manhattan canyon. (32)
Because of the strikes and discoveries made during the summer and fall of 1906, people began to return to Manhattan. That October, tests showed that the Manhattan ore could be worked by cyaniding. In January 1907, a contract for a 12-inch pipeline from Jett was let, but the line was never built. In March, eight mills were either planned or rumored. There were complaints that the lack of mills was holding up the progress of Manhattan, and this was true. By the last of March, the machinery for a forty-stamp mill was at Battle Mountain, and the mill was expected to be completed within ninety days. A cable road was talked of to carry freight and ore between Round Mountain, Manhattan, and Millers. (33)
The first mill in Manhattan was built by the Manhattan Ore Reducing and Refining Company and was sometimes called the Wolf Mill. It was later called the War Eagle Mill and is so known today. It is located on the left-hand side of the canyon (coming up it) and still works intermittently. The next mill built was owned by the Nevada Ore Purchasing Company and sometimes called the Lemon Mill. It was located on the opposite side of the canyon from the War Eagle Mill and was only torn down a few years ago. The Lemon Mill had ten stamps, was of 4o-ton capacity, and used the cyaniding process. It was under attachment for a long time. The Wolf Mill was originally planned as a ten-stamp mill but was built with twenty stamps. The Lemon Mill was later enlarged, and the Wolf Mill had a sampler built nearby to make operation easier. The third mill built was the Chapman or Canyon Mill, built in the right-hand gulch branching from the main canyon, on the lower edge of town. The road to Tonopah over the Manhattan summit followed this gulch. By June 1908, the machinery for the seventh mill in Manhattan was on its way. (34)
These three mills were built about the same time, the Wolf Mill beginning operation in November 1907, the Lemon Mill in December, and the Canyon Mill about the first of January,1908. One hundred tons of ore a day was thought to be the total capacity of these three mills. (35) During March 1908, the production of the Wolf Mill was $3,500 and that of the Canyon Mill was $4,500. The January and February shipments totaled $31,274, and the total bullion sent to the U.S. Mint was $39,274. During the first fifteen days of May, $43,000 was shipped out. (36)
In June 1907, a rich strike was made in the Turtle Dove Mine on Litigation Hill; a month later tellurium, a rich gold-bearing rock, was found in the Thanksgiving Mine. (37) The ore was sulphide, black in color, with variegated sprinkles of white quartz. If free gold could not be seen in the rock it would not pan. This rock did not always assay well, but sometimes an assay would yield $400. If there was much quartz crystal in the rock, much free gold would be found. This property, the Thanksgiving, worked almost continuously from its discovery until 1941, and lately as part of the Reliance property. In May 1907, assays of over $6,000 a ton and $1,855.54 were made, and the ledge of the Thanksgiving was thought to be the Mother Lode of Manhattan. One assay of 15 pounds, from a 4-foot ledge, ran $ 8,556.5 4—of which $8,484.20 was in gold, and $102.34 in silver. The Thanksgiving stock started up and was expected to reach $1.00 per share. (38) The Thanksgiving was the first dividend payer in Manhattan. (39)
Whereas only so 50 men had been working the Manhattan claims in June 1907, they totaled 230 by August. Fifty-seven men arrived within two weeks' time, and soon families began to join them. Leases were wanted by many after the strikes were made on the various properties. (40) By September, it was estimated that sixty-five mines were working, fifty-five of which had hoists, and 300 miners were on the payroll, which was approximately $45,000 a month. (41) A meeting was held in September to promote the town. (42)
Another setback occurred when so many banks closed because of the panic of 1907. The San Francisco banks owned about half of the property in Manhattan in 1907, and many companies had to close because the banks did. One of these was the Rose-Nash lease, which closed when the Manhattan branch of the Nye and Ormsby Counties Bank failed. The lease was to resume as soon as the bank reopened. Other companies failed because of mismanagement and incompetence. The Manhattan Bank was the only bank in the region to remain open. James Darrough refused to withdraw $10,000 from it in October and sent word he would deposit more money if it was needed. (43) Money that was raised to develop the Manhattan properties was often spent to develop other mines or used elsewhere. Much indignation was displayed regarding this, and regarding outsiders who got in on the ground floor and failed to do their work. There was some rumor of legal steps being taken about these things. (44)
There were 368 registered voters in Manhattan in 1908. (45) The Nevada-California Power line was rumored as about to be ex-tended in 1908 but it was not done until the next year. (46) A substation was built across the canyon from the War Eagle Mill, a short distance above the Lemon Mill. In March 1909, fire starting in the Nevada Hotel destroyed much of Manhattan. A north wind was blowing, which meant that the fire missed the lower part of the town. There was no one injured, and no insurance covered the buildings .(47) Most of the business section on both sides of the street have in fact burned three times. At one time both sides of the street had two-story buildings and a very nice hotel. Fire changed all this. This fall (1941), the three largest buildings still remaining on the main street were destroyed. Smaller buildings are usually built or moved in after a fire.
Manhattan had a hard struggle after the San Francisco earth-quake, but by 1909 things were picking up, and they continued to do so because of rich placer findings.(48) Whenever a big strike was made, a small boom occurred. After a time it became customary to expect Manhattan to boom once a year or at least every two or three years. Manhattan has always been known as a "boom town" even though the booms were sometimes just talk. (49)
Some of the first placering in Manhattan began on the Little Grey claim in the fall of 1907, (50) although a little was done the year be-fore. (51) Most of the work was done by "dry washers," which did not use a great deal of water. A little placer work was done on several properties during 1908, but in 1909, most of the gulch west of Manhattan, to the edge of the valley—a distance of 4 miles—was filled with placer miners. This placer was found by accident while doing location work at Central. It was found that there were two channels in the gulch, one wet, the other dry. Some of the gravel netted $8 a cubic yard, some $40 a yard; $12 gravel was common, and the highest went for $121 a yard. In January 1909, fourteen placers were working within a radius of 2 miles. Pay dirt was found at a depth of 14 to 7o feet. A pipe or pneumatic dredge that raised the gravel to the surface by suction was installed on one of the properties. After the pipe was sunk to the desired depth, compressed air and water did the digging. The dredge was run by electricity and could handle 500-1,000 yards daily. Ninety percent of the holes dug gave pay dirt. The placers were usually closed during the coldest weather, but work did not always stop. Usually the gravel was taken out and piled up to be sluiced in the spring. Some of the placers that were leased employed a number of men and worked two or three shifts. Others were worked by only one or two men. (52)
Quite a number of nuggets were taken from these placers. In February 1909 more than $100 worth of nuggets was washed from three and a half yards of gravel. Some of the nuggets were worth between $3 and $5 each and varied in size from that of a pinhead to that of a pea. The largest nugget found before May 1909 was worth $22.50 and was taken from Thomas "Dry Wash" Wilson's lease. (53) Wilson got his nickname from being the first to use the dry washer at Round Mountain, where he made a small fortune in 1907-1908; he then went to Manhattan and repeated the process. (54) In June of that year, a larger nugget worth $162 was found. It had been dumped into the machine and would not go through. One of the men reached in to throw it away and found a nugget the size of a deck of cards. This nugget weighed 11.013 ounces and was solid gold. It came from the Griffen lease and was known as the Griffen nugget. A nugget found in May weighed 56 pennyweight and measured 21/2 inches by 31/2 inches and was half an inch thick. It was worth $40. (55)
The daily cleanup for the gulch was estimated at $1,000 in May, when more than 150 men were working. Several shafts near Central had to be abandoned because there was so much water in them. In September, high-graders put in an appearance in Manhattan. They were believed to be the work of an organized gang. A brush between the high-graders and the law took place on Lamb's lease. More than thirty shots were fired, and one deputy sheriff was wounded slightly. The citizens of the town were quite stirred up over this, but they failed to find the robbers. The high-graders dropped some ore that went for $5 a pound. In December, a gold bar of 460 ounces, valued at more than $14 an ounce, or $6,420 from 20 tons, was shipped out. (56) A strike the same month, averaging close to $400, was made on the Swanson-Lyon-Rose lease, and in January they shipped $6,420 worth of bullion from 240 pounds of concentrate, making $9,420, or better than $39 a ton. (57)
In April 1910, the lease of "Snowshoe Charley" Ravenscroft and "Happy Jack" Barrier yielded 118 yards of gravel averaging $21.80 a yard, or a total value of $2,572.40. Bullion from the Peterson Mill yielding $26,000 from 85 tons came from the lease on the Big Four. That May, the week's shipment to the mill and smelter was estimated at 7,038 tons at a value of $175,950. Bullion valued at $57,000 was sent out of Manhattan in November. The population had by then increased to nearly 1,000, and the December production was nearly $60,000. (58) Placering continued to be of importance around Manhattan until about 1915 (59)
The Big Four Mill, completed in 1910 on the western edge of town, produced $150,000 from the time of its completion to March 1911. During February it averaged $44.26 a ton, and in April it was averaging $25,000 a month. The Big Four was the biggest lease in the camp (60) and during 1911 was the biggest producer of the camp.(61) In April, it paid its first dividend of $16,000, at two cents a share, and in August it paid its second dividend.(62) The Big Four Mill ran for a number of years, but in 1926 it was torn down and part of the corrugated iron was used to build Berg's garage in Round Mountain.(63)
The White Caps, on Litigation Hill, began coming to the front in 1907 when several strikes were made.(64) Its ore was hard to treat because it was base and had so much arsenic in it.(65) The ore had been sent to fillers for treatment, but in May 1911 a mill was started to treat it locally. That October, the mill proved successful in its treatment of the ore, having been designed and specified by John G. and Charles Kirchen of Tonopah.(66) In 1916 rich ore was found in the lower levels of the mine, and another boom took place.(67) This mine has continued to work most of the time up to the present.
Placering in the Manhattan Gulch resumed in about 1930. Each leaser had his own method of working: Some used a great deal of machinery whereas others used very little. The Dodge Brothers Construction Company of Fallon used its road scrapers to move the dirt into the sluice boxes. The leases all expired about January 1, 1936, when the dredge took over the McDonald property and the lower part of the gulch from Central to the valley. (68)
The first discoveries on the bench at the mouth of the gulch were made in January 1909 in a shaft. (69) The McDonalds were interested in this property for a long time and sometimes worked it a little or leased it. In 1937 the property was taken over by the Manhattan Gold Dredging Company and a 1,500-yard dredge was built. Water was piped from Peavine, a distance of about 15 miles. Houses were moved from Tonopah and Round Mountain, and the town of Jamestown, named after the superintendent, John L. James, was established. The dredge began work in 1938 and is now about halfway up the canyon toward Central. (70)
There is a little placering going on just below town. The Reliance, which has been working for several years, was taken over by a new company in the fall of 1941. (71)
The Keystone, located to the right of the Manhattan summit, has been working intermittently for a number of years. Some property owned by Jim Coop in a gulch on the side toward Manhattan from the summit is also being worked. (72) In 1928, Coop and his partner, Henry Schubert, made a rich gold strike on their property. A mill test averaged $17.50 a ton for 100 tons, and they had enough ore to keep the 6o-ton War Eagle Mill running. The mine was 2 1/2 miles from the mill, but it was a downhill haul all the way (73) There is a possibility that these properties may be taken over sometime by a company that could work them profitably. Such is the hope of the owners, anyway. (74)
The press used to publish the first issues of the Manhattan Mail, in January 1906, was a Washington hand press that had been used to publish the Marysville Appeal in the early 1860s. It was secondhand even then. The press was then carted by bull team to Carson, where it produced the Carson Independent, then the Carson Daily Appeal and finally the Carson Register. In 1875 it was taken to Belmont and used to publish the Belmont Courier until 1892. After that newspaper suspended publication, the press lay unused until it was brought to Manhattan. (75) The Manhattan Mail ceased to publish for a few years but resumed business in 1911. (76) Three other newspapers, the Manhattan News, the Manhattan Times, and the Manhattan Post, were also published at various times.
In January 1906, gold was discovered at Baxter Springs i8 miles south of Manhattan. Within several weeks, tents housing four saloons, a lodging house, and two grocery stores were doing a rushing business, and another saloon was being started. One of the stores had its supplies piled on the ground because it had no shelter in which to put them. By the last of February, there were 400 people where there had been two prospectors six weeks before. The main ledge assayed $30 clear across, and selected samples came in at $1,154 and $6,712. In March, ten leases were let and sixteen new tents were put up in three days. Three big companies were working, and a fourth was being formed. (77) The ore was identical to that of the Mustang or Stray Dog of Manhattan (78) and the Baxter Springs district was thought to be the south end of the Manhattan zone. A two-story hotel was expected to be built by the end of March 1906. (79)
In March 1907, rich placer was found, with gold nuggets as large as buck shot. That April, a strike was made when a prospect blast dislodged a ledge full of gold. The strike was 2,000 feet from one made a few days before. No assays had been made at the time of the report, but it was estimated that the ore would assay $10,000 and that some of it might even go as high as $20,000.80 In January 1908, a strike averaging over $200 a ton was made, and at least 100 men were working in the district. (81)The values did not last, however, and the district quietly sank out of sight. The sole remaining structure is a water tank built by cattlemen sometime in the 1870s during a dry spell. (82)
Monarch was a "wildcat" town, lying about is miles east of Manhattan and 3 miles south of Belmont. It was begun in September 1905 by Reverend Benjamin Blanchard, who sold about 2,400 lots but never found ore. Fifty-two miners were working around the district after copper was discovered south of the town and gold and silver in small amounts was located 1 - 10 miles distant. In the fall of 1906, plans were being made to install a water system for the town. (83)
Blanchard was reported to be selling lots as far east as Missouri, and selling them for ranching and farming as well as for mining claims and town lots. He was thought to have received $45,000 for the lots. When the payment of seven contracts for hauling and building materials came due, Blanchard claimed there was no money with which to pay the bills because his Eastern backers had not come through with the money they had promised. His creditors agreed to wait until September 28, 1906, for their money, and Blanchard said he would travel East to get the necessary funds. When he did not return at the appointed time, writs of attachment were issued. Between $30,000 and $40,000 was owed to Manhattan and Tonopah companies. The laborers were the hardest hit, $10.000 being owed them. Some people believed that Blanchard would return and straighten things out, but he did not; it is widely believed that he and the money went to Mexico. That October, a meeting was held and all claims against Blanchard were turned over to one person. The claims amounted to $73,000. The boarding house was closed by that time, and everyone who could had left. There had been four stores and a dozen other buildings. Five men remained as watchmen. One hundred thirty people had been there at its height. (84)
The following year, 7 percent copper was found under the townsite, opening up the possibility that Blanchard was sincere in starting the town and developing mines later. (85) Today there are five or six good-sized wooden buildings left in Monarch, in pretty fair condition considering that no one has lived there since about 1913, when a little activity took place. One person owns most of these buildings, and every year she spends some time there, doing representation work. The road between Monarch and Belmont is very rough and rocky, whereas that from Monarch to Manhattan is sandy and often washed out by cloudbursts.(86)
Photo taken from Lucile's back yard, looking south toward Stebbins Peak, late 1930s. Courtesy Roger Berg.
Lucile and her longtime boyfriend Eddie Critchfield, who taught Lucile to fly an airplane in the late 1940s. Photo taken in the Round Mountain area, circa i95o. Courtesy Roger Berg.
Round Mountain, 1906
L. D. Gordon made the first publicized discovery at Round Mountain in late February (1) or early March (2) 1906. Others certainly found gold there earlier than Gordon, though there seems to be no agreement as to just who was the first. Dick Patterson found gold between Stebbins Hill and the small hill to the east of it while herding sheep for John F. Stebbins in 1904. After he informed Stebbins of his discovery, Stebbins staked some claims but did nothing else.(3) G. W. Schmidtlein also owned some claims near Round Mountain and says he knew there was gold there before its discovery by Gordon. (4) Frank Gendron had some sort of claim for he got a large share of Round Mountain Mining Company stock when the company was organized. Gordon was doing a little work on some of Stebbins' ground, or on some of his own, when he made the discovery on the Sunnyside claim, located on the southern slope of the round-topped mountain rising about 400 feet from the edge of the valley.(5) Stebbins Hill lies to the north of this mountain and is connected with it by a low pass.
"Little Scotty" L. R. Scott and "Slim" Luther Morgan set out to prospect for gold in this region about the same time that Gordon was working there. They found some gold on a dump and went to Manhattan to have it assayed. When they returned they found the ground was already staked by Stebbins. They had some sort of claim or interest in the ground, and after some difficulty their interests were recognized.(6) A prospector brought a piece of quartz ore the size of an office desk and plastered with free gold to Manhattan. This is said to be the largest and most spectacular piece of "picture gold" ever found in Nevada. (7) Immediately a rush to the new camp 18 miles north of Manhattan resulted. The nearby ground was staked, and soon strikes occurred on the Daisy, the Antelope (which was staked by Mrs. Lena [ John F.] Stebbins), the Fairview, the Sphinx, and several others. (8)
In February 1906 the townsite of Brooklyn was surveyed at the mouth of Jefferson Canyon. By March, this town seemed assured, and the Round Mountain group began. (9) For several years many advocated the building of the town on Shoshone Creek about a mile from its present location. Quite a few buildings were put up there, and a store operated for a time. (10) Gradually everyone left Shoshone except Frank Duke and Miss Anne Lowenberg, who ran a chicken ranch and sold eggs and vegetables until their deaths a few years ago.
The town of Round Mountain was built on the northeast foot of the mountain from which it gets its name. There were only two tents in the town on June 1, 1906, but they soon increased in number, and wooden buildings began to make their appearance. (11) Fifteen companies were operating and about 400 people were re-corded as being in town at the end of June. (12) For a time, Round Mountain promised to be better than Goldfield. (13)
Round Mountain appeared to be a strong rival of Manhattan.(14) Unlike Manhattan, it never had a boom nor a reactionary chill, but its growth was slow and steady. It had more ore than milling facilities and was pretty much a "self-made" camp for it had little outside capital. Some of this capital came from Goldfield, Tonopah, and Manhattan investors. It had a fine reputation outside of the state.(15) There were two mills running by March 1907, the Round Mountain Mining Company of 25 ton capacity and the Fairview of 20-ton capacity.(16) Two more were added in 1908—the Round Mountain Reduction Company mill, built by two leasers, and the Sphinx mill, each of 5o-ton capacity. By 1909 there were six mills running, the Daisy Mill and a tungsten mill having been built. Round Mountain was second only to Tonopah in the amount of bullion tax paid in Nye County in 1909.(17)
There were about 250 men working in March 1908, beside the leasers, (18) and twenty-five companies were listed in the Nugget directory in May. An article copied from a Washington (state?) paper stated that Round Mountain had about 800 inhabitants and 250 miners belonging to the Western Federation of Miners. The monthly payroll was around $20,000 in December 1908. (19)
Round Mountain gold often came in seams, bands, and crystals of from one-fourth to one-half an inch of solid meta, (20) while wire and leaf gold were also found. (21)
The Badger Nugget was found on the Antelope claim on April 26, 1906. The dirt at the mouth of a badger hole was panned and caused some excitement. When the hole was opened, a rock found at the bottom on the badger's nest was found to be solid gold plate covering half a square foot. The nugget measured 9 by 15 inches and weighed so 50 pounds. The gold was nearly half an inch thick on the surface. It was shown at the Mining Congress exhibit at Goldfield in August 1909 and was valued at $4,000. (22) That July, a $1,200 gold slab was taken from the Antelope, and some leasers found a stringer of solid gold and ore so rich a guard was needed. (23)
In May, an extremely rich strike was made on the Round Mountain Edith claim, and ore found on the Sphinx claim ran $200—$300 a ton. By June, two shifts were working on the Sphinx while 3o pounds of ore, valued at $2,000, was being displayed in Goldfield. (24)
A "wall of gold" found on the Sphinx in September 1907 was worth $1,000 a ton; one assay ran $3,981.48. It glistened in the sun when discovered and held out to a depth of 70 feet. (25) The Sphinx Mining Company paid its first dividend in 1909 after paying off its indebtedness. The Daisy Mining Company also paid a dividend that year. In November, the Nugget criticized an article copied from the Mining and Financial News of New York that stated that the Sphinx never intended to build a mill; in fact, the mill had already been working for a year by then. (26)
The only claims in Round Mountain to have water in them were the Icedoor claims, lying half a mile to the east of the Blue Jacket. They were yielding eight barrels a day in September 1908. (27)
In May 1909 the bullion output for a month was $75,000; of this, $40,000 came from the Sunnyside, $15,000 from the Sphinx, and $ 10,000 each from the Daisy and Fairview. (28) A shortage of water as well as some litigation over water kept two mills from running in July 1909, and by September only one was running. (29)
In September 1911 a mill on Shoshone was moved to the Blue Jacket. It began running that November (30) but burned down a few years later. (31)
Ore assaying at $25,000 came from the original strike on the Sunnyside claim in June 1906, (32) and by the last of 1906 the Round Mountain Mining Company had its mill running. Because there was no water at the mine, the mill was located on Shoshone Creek, about a mile from the mine.(33) A little later it was moved near the mine, where it is located today, (34) and increased to 6o-ton capacity. (35) Water was piped from Jefferson Canyon to use in the mill, which was enlarged in 1911 to 100-ton capacity (36) and a few years later was enlarged again.(37)
"Big Dan" Daly and Maud the mule were the only motive power of the Sunnyside Mine during its first days of operation. (38) Several mules later were used to pull the string of ore cars to the main shaft, where they were hoisted to the surface first by steam power(39) and then by electricity when it was extended to the camp in 1909. (40) In July 1908, a new change- and wash-room was built containing sixty individual lockers, hot and cold water, and two showers. (41)
In April 1909, J. P. Sweeney and Gordon tried to oust J. P. Loftus and J. R. Davis as directors of the company by circulating a letter charging incompetence and asking for the controlling vote. Davis came back at Sweeney and his alleged misstatements in a circular letter, and in the annual meeting Loftus and Davis won out and Sweeney was no longer a director.(42)
The Round Mountain Mining Company was the largest producer in the camp and owned most of the ground. It began with 70 acres and by 1909 owned 343 acres. It was the first dividend payer in the district, paying $75,000 in May 1908; it continued to pay a dividend every quarter for a number of years. In 1910 it was producing about $38,000 worth of bullion a month. (43) Eventually it bought out all the other companies, and it now owns practically all the ground around Round Mountain. In 1923 its property consisted of 2,009 acres and placer rights of 216 acres (excluding property in Jefferson and Jett Canyons) and had been developed by a 1,000-foot shaft and 5 miles of workings equipped with two hoists and a compressor run by electricity, a 180-ton mill, a 6-mile pipeline from Jefferson and Shoshone canyons, a 9-mile pipeline from Jett Canyon, and two monitors: (44)
Thomas Wilson owned ground west of the Sunnyside placer and worked it for several years after he quit leasing in Manhattan. He put up a large gallows frame that was later moved to Gold Hill when that mine began working. Wilson sold his property to the Round Mountain Mining Company in 1928. (45)
Both leasers and the Round Mountain Mining Company continued to work up until 1928. During that year the company was reorganized as the Nevada Porphyry Gold Mines. Only about eight men were working for the company, and no more leases were let from then on until 1936 when the entire property was leased to the A. 0. Smith Company, an eastern machinery company. The Treadwell Yukon Company tried to lease the mine but was unsuccessful. (46) The Smith Company made a careful sampling of the property, with fair results, but it did not justify the price asked for the property. It had planned to put in a mill of 5,000 tons daily. (47) A sampler mill and an assay office, said to be the largest west of the Mississippi River when built, were erected on the flat below the Sunnyside. No one was allowed in the mill itself except those who worked in it, some said because some of the machinery there was not patented. During the winter of 1936-1937, cold weather stopped most of the operations, and in February 1937 the Smith Company pulled out.
Since the Dodge Brothers Construction Company left in 1940, no work has been done on the Round Mountain property itself, but a little work has been carried on by Jack Raymond on his own property just east of the Fairview hill. The Manhattan Gold Dredge Company has taken over the Nevada Porphyry property, it is understood, and plans to put in a dredge, but due to national defense work no information on this is available. (48)
Thomas Wilson discovered placer gold at the base of Round Mountain below the Sunnyside claim in 1906 and began working it with dry washers.(49) The next year, he and Henry Bartlett conceived the idea of hydraulicing the placer and set about organizing the Hydraulic Mining Company and getting water piped from Jefferson. They leased the water from the Daisy Mining Company and brought the water by an 8-inch pipeline to the placer ground, which they leased from the Round Mountain Mining Company. (50)
They soon decided the 8-inch pipe was not large enough so ordered 12-inch pipe. In August 1907, 400 inches of water under 400-foot pressure was secured from Jefferson, Shoshone, and the Indian Ranch. It was thought that 300-500 tons of dirt could be torn up daily. The first giant was working by October, the plant costing $85 ,000 to install. It was estimated that 600--1,000 tons went through the sluice boxes every twenty-four hours. Cold weather delayed the installation of the second giant, although a cleanup of better than $200 a cubic yard was expected for January 1908. An $8,000 cleanup in twenty-four hours was made the last of January.(51) By May 1908, three giants were working—two on the Sunnyside and one below the Sphinx. (52) Nearly $2,000 was taken from 100 yards in one day. In June, the hydraulic uncovered 150 feet of ore just under the surface that went for $ 100 a ton for 20 feet; the rest averaged $ 100 a ton. (53)
Key Pittman, later a U.S. senator, was in charge of the placer in 1911 . Round Mountain's prospects looked bright, and much activity was expected during the summer. However, a water shortage due to a dry spell kept both mills and placer idle a lot of the time. (54)
Placer was found in November 1908 about half a mile east of the Sunnyside on the Blue Jacket. In 1910, rich ore and placer were found there, and many applications for leases were received immediately by the Blue Jacket Mining Company. On January 31, I910, the Blue Jacket Mining Company got an injunction to keep Tom Wilson and others from working that part of the ground belonging to the company, for it was charged that Wilson did not carry out his contract. (55) The suit was settled out of court. (56)
The placer on the Blue Jacket gave out after a few years, but that on the Sunnyside continued to be worked until 1940. The work followed the base of Round Mountain and Stebbins Hill northward. Around 1932, a mechanical placer costing $ 100,000 was installed near the spot where the Sphinx Mill had been. A sum of $25,000 more was spent improving the mechanical placer, but it never proved successful, and they returned to hydraulicing entirely. (57) About 1935, the Dodge Brothers Construction Company of Fallon began operations on the placer, using bulldozers to scrape up the dirt to be put through the sluice boxes. The company continued on around Stebbins Hill, and when work ended in 1940 the area between Stebbins Hill and the small hill to the east of it was being worked. Many Indians were employed on the placer for they did not like to work underground. (58)
The Round Mountain Daisy Company secured water rights in Jefferson Creek and in May 1906 laid a 6-inch pipeline to bring water from the north fork of Jefferson to its mill. By March 1907 this company had secured all water from Jefferson and Shoshone and was to bring water to town immediately from the Indian Ranch, lying on the west slope of Mount Jefferson about 4 miles from town. Jefferson and Shoshone creeks would furnish 310 inches of water to be used for placering and milling. It could be brought under pressure of 1,000-1,500 pounds and could be used to develop electric power. (59) The first water for mining and milling purposes was piped from Shoshone to the Daisy Mill and later to the Sphinx and Sunnyside mills. (60) In 1907, 12 -inch pipe was ordered from the coast to build a pipeline from Jefferson. The pipe came by way of Austin and was hauled from there by 20-mule teams. This pipeline was to furnish water for hydraulic placering.(61) A few wells had been sunk but were soon abandoned.
In July 1909, Shoshone Creek went dry for the first time in history and the mills and placer were forced to shut down. (62) That August, a 4o-foot well was sunk on Shoshone to supply the Fairview Mill with water. About the same time, there was trouble between the Round Mountain Mining Company and the Daisy Company over water from the Indian Ranch and over the hydraulic pipeline. This took several months to settle. In September, Stebbins and Frank Dixon sold their water rights on Jefferson and Shoshone to the Daisy Company; Stebbins later moved to a farm near Ellis, Kansas. That October, the company expected to build a concrete dam on Shoshone Creek in which to store water for milling and placering.(63) Instead of building the dam up Shoshone, it was built about half a mile south of town and just east of the Blue Jacket property between two low hills. In 1914, J. S. Wood sold his Jett Canyon water rights to the company, (64) and in 1915 an earthen dam was built in Jett and a pipeline was laid across the valley to the mill. (65)
In October 1909, trouble arose between the Round Mountain Mining Company and the Red Top and Sphinx mining companies. The two latter companies wanted an underground survey made to determine if the former was still on its own ground. The order for this survey was granted in November. In February 19I0, John F. Davidson sued the Round Mountain Mining Company for $600,000 to recover 14,000 tons of ore valued at $300000 and damages of equal amount. It was charged that the defendant was mining on ground leased to Davidson. The defendant was prohibited from working blocks two and three of the Blackhawk claim on the Red Top, and the plaintiff was prohibited from working on an upraise to the defendant's ground and placed under $10,000 bond pending final settlement. Some $1i0,000 worth of bullion was also tied up. An armed guard was placed on the section in dispute. A group from the Tonopah Mining Company was sent out to examine the ground. In April, Davidson was held in contempt of court for blowing an air vent above the bulkhead in the disputed raise. That June, the Round Mountain Mining Company's dividend was held up because of the pending suit, and in November it was decided not to pay any more dividends until the suit was settled. In October, Davidson was awarded $164,000 and the defendant gave a bond of $31,000 for a stay of execution and appealed the case. There was talk of the Sphinx Mining Company attaching Davidson's judgment on the grounds that the principal ledge of the Sphinx apexed on the Davidson lease. (66)
Tungsten was found up Shoshone Creek about 1906 by a Doctor Gohlin, who arrived in Round Mountain when there were only four tents in the town. He found the ore after careful study and prospecting and took his samples to Manhattan, for there was no assay office in Round Mountain at the time. The ore ran 40-76 percent tungsten, and the first shipment was made in May 1907. Three new companies were formed in July when a new find of ore running 50 - 70 1/2 percent tungsten was made. Twenty percent ore was thought good. (67) This ore had been worked in 1872, at a profit even, by a crude mill.(68) A 50-ton mill was built on Shoshone Creek in 1909, and for a time it was thought that two mills would be built.(69) In November 1911, a boarding house and a mill operated by electricity were erected. (70) The mill ran for several years.
Quicksilver was also discovered in the Shoshone area, and J. A. Stevens and C. A. Small took out the first shipment in 1911. (71)This property is still worked intermittently.
Silver ore was discovered 4 miles southeast of Round Mountain in 1907. This ore came from a 10-foot vein and contained 700 ounces of silver mixed with bismuth, sulphide of copper, and lead. Bismuth was worth between $1.25 and $1.50 [per pound] at the time, and the ore ran 20 percent bismuth. (72) The strike was called Silver Point, and in April 1908 a mill was planned. Water was to be piped from Mariposa Canyon lying 41/2 miles southward. In January 1909, a silver ledge assaying from $850 to $2,000, lying 5 miles southeast of Round Mountain, was idle because of litigation. That March, twenty-two sticks of dynamite exploded at Silver Point, demolishing the blacksmith shop, but no one was injured. (73) The ore proved to be too low grade to be worked profitably, and after a few years all activity ceased. Quicksilver was discovered later, and in 1928 a seven-stamp mill was planned but never built. (74)
Four miles north of Round Mountain is the Gold Hill Mine, known until 1928 as the Ramshorn Mine. Gold was discovered there in 1904 in an area then referred to as Agate Mountain, probably because of the hard ribbon quartz found there. (75) The rock is porphyry, the same as at Round Mountain, but unlike at Round Mountain, water was encountered about 200 feet down and pumping machinery had to be installed. Bill Bailey lived in a dug-out there for years, prospecting and working the mine a little, but he could not get anyone to believe there was anything worthwhile there until about 1927, when C. W. Taylor and a man named McMurray took it over and organized the Gold Hill Mining Company. (76) They extended the power line from Round Mountain and built a cyanide mill. Those employed at Gold Hill lived in Round Mountain, and about two dozen houses were moved from Tonopah by some of the residents of Round Mountain to take care of the new people. Around seventy men were employed in three shifts, and the company furnished transportation to and from the mine. The assayer, Jack Davis, says that $700,000 was taken from the ground. The mine closed about 1930 and for several years was worked by two leasers. It was purchased in 1940 by F. Steigmeyer of Los Angeles and Ben Morrin of Round Mountain and is now employing around twenty men. The lower levels of the mine have filled with water again because the pumping machinery was not used by the leasers. It will take a year or so to pump out the water, it is thought. (77)
A bank was opened in 1907 by Nelson Rounsevell and Chester Olive with an authorized capital of $50,000 and the unsecured notes of these two men payable to the bank with no interest to the amount of $26,000. One hundred dollars was contributed by George Bartlett, who was made president, and $500 was given by Jack Stebbins, who was made vice-president. Bartlett and Stebbins were taken in because five directors were needed and because their names gave respect and standing to the undertaking. The other three directors of the Round Mountain Banking Corporation were Rounsevell, Olive, and Thomas McSorley. The bank was started with $3,000 borrowed for three days from Arthur Smith of the Bank of Manhattan, who refused to loan it unless a guard of his own choice had personal charge of the money at all times. This money was spread out on the counter in plain sight on the day the bank opened. The depositors naturally supposed that with so much money in view there must be more in the safe; having confidence in the bank, they deposited their money. By the end of the first day $2,000 had been deposited, and by the end of the third there was $12,000, much of it in cash. By the end of 1907, the Round Mountain Banking Corporation had $70,000 in deposits with less than half of it loaned out. (78)
In August 1908, after the State Bank and Trust Company of Manhattan closed, the furniture and fixtures from it were moved to the Round Mountain Bank. Among the items was a 10-foot safe. The Round Mountain Bank closed its doors in December 1908, due, it said, to "malicious and persistent reports which caused heavy withdrawal of deposits and forced it to close." It was reported that it would open shortly to pay depositors in full, but it did not, and a receiver was appointed. It was reported also that it would pay dollar-for-dollar and that it had failed because it had been too liberal in its efforts to help local enterprises. L. A. Hannon was suggested by the depositors as receiver, but R. P. Dunlap was appointed. In February 1909 he reported that there were enough resources to pay all liabilities. After a year in which nothing was done, Dunlap reported he was doing the best he could, but many people thought he was just passing the buck. The depositors were not paid. (79)
The town of Round Mountain received its water in barrels until 1908, when the pipeline was laid from Shoshone Creek by the Round Mountain Water Company. Three reservoirs were built up the creek, and a 5-inch pipeline was laid throughout the town. (80) The charge for being connected with the water main was $20 or $25 and included the $10 water meter fee, which was refunded when the water was no longer used and the meter returned. (81) The water was turned on September 26, 1908.(82) Those not connected by pipes continued to receive their water by barrels, which cost around $1 a barrel. It had cost as high as $1.25 a barrel (83) but was lowered to seventy-five cents a barrel in 1909. (84)
There had been talk of piping water from Barrel Spring, 4 1/2 miles south, for mining, milling, and domestic purposes before the Jefferson and Shoshone lines were put in.(85) A couple of shafts were put down in town, in places indicated by willow "witches," to secure water, but little or no water was obtained. (86) During the winter of 1909-1910, the water pipes all froze and burst because they had not been laid deep enough in the ground. (87) In January 1910, the thermometer registered ten degrees below zero. (88) Mining and milling were held up until the pipelines could be repaired. The pipeline throughout the town had to be replaced, and since that time there have been no water meters. During the time of replacing the water pipes, which took several months, water was again delivered in barrels. (89) The town water works were turned over to Ernest Brown in October 1910 with an option of buying them. (90)
About 1912 they were sold to W. H. Berg, who built a reservoir on a knoll about a quarter of a mile east of town. About 1930, a second reservoir was built nearby during an extremely dry spell. Water was so scarce for a time that it had to be hauled from a well in lower Jefferson Canyon, near the Gold Hill road, to keep a few trees alive. The town water came from a big spring in Jefferson where the Stebbins and Dixon families lived for years until they sold their water rights. About 1935, the springs below the Indian Ranch were cleaned out and pipe was laid from them to the reservoirs. These springs now furnish the water for the town. (91) The rate for water when the pipeline was first put in was three-fourths a cent per gallon, with a minimum rate of $5 per month. (92) Today water is charged at $3.50 a month for a family and $1 a month for a single person.
One of the first wooden buildings in the town of Round Mountain was erected for the Round Mountain Nugget, published by Henry J. Bartlett, brother of Senator George A. Bartlett. The Nugget was first issued in June 1906, being printed in Tonopah until the building and press were ready in Round Mountain, about August of that year.(93) The newspaper continued to be issued until about November 1910, although Bartlett sold it in 1909.(94)
A library was started in April 1907 with thirty-seven books, ten members, and $20 in the treasury. Within a year it had 332 volumes and fifty members. Books had been donated by various people, and the Tonopah library gave Round Mountain an encyclopedia of ten volumes and many of the duplicate books it had. A committee was selected to draft a constitution and by-laws. The library had enough money to build its own building, and a town-site lot was donated, but the building was never built because the membership dwindled as residents began moving away and the books were scattered. Dues were $2 a year, and it cost ten cents to check out a book. (95)
A school was started in 1907, and Mrs. W. R. Gibson was the first teacher.(96) In August 1908, a building costing $1,500 was begun. The school was to be 20 by 3o feet in size, with large windows and a 7-foot front porch. (97)The completed building was used for the grammar school until 1937. Most of the time only one teacher was employed, even though at times there were between forty and fifty pupils. Sometimes half of these were Indians. Two grade teachers were employed for several years beginning in 1935, but because the town is quiet again, there is now only one gram-mar school teacher. A high school teacher was employed for years before the high school was officially established.
In November 1937, a new four-room schoolhouse with a built-in stage was completed with the aid of Works Progress Association labor. It houses both the high school and grammar school. Until this new building was erected, the school entertainments were usually presented in the town hall. (98)
There has never been a church established in Round Mountain. Priests and ministers of various denominations have traveled from Tonopah and Austin at various times and held services in the school building or the town hall. A Sunday School has been held at various times in the school building, the town hall, or in different homes. (99) When the town was first started there was talk of building a church (100) but it was never done. This is unusual, for all other camps in this region have had at least one organized church and a building if the town had any degree of permanence.
Dances were the principal social activity of Round Mountain. These dances were given every time there was some important event to celebrate. Sometimes the music was furnished by local talent and sometimes it was imported from Manhattan, Tonopah, or Austin. When the town was lively, dances were usually held every one or two weeks. Since the town has been quiet, very few dances have been held. (101)
The Athletic Club opened its hall on lower Main Street with a St. Patrick's dance in 1908. Midnight supper was served in the Miners Union Hall next door, which was later used as a restaurant. (102) These two halls operated until about 1926, when a film caught fire during the showing of a motion picture in the former hall and both buildings were destroyed. Since that time another building farther up Main Street, originally built as a saloon by "Slim" Morgan, has been used as the town hall. (103)
Moving pictures and traveling shows of various sorts have been held at different times both in the hall that burned and in the present hall. When the camp was active, shows were held once or twice a week. The building across the street from the hall that burned, formerly a store, was fixed in 1935 as a theater but has not been used since 1937. (104)
About 1910, a sewing club was started on the spur of the moment by two women. Later eight others were asked to join. They met once a week at each other's homes and had refreshments and sewed and joked. Some other women of the town then started a literary or Shakespeare club, but it only lasted several months. The sewing club lasted for several years, until most of its members had moved away. (105)
Baseball was the chief sport of the region, games being played against Austin, Tonopah, and Manhattan teams. On Decoration Day [Memorial Day] 1908, a game was played with Manhattan during a snowstorm. The bases were shoveled off and the pitcher would yell when he was going to throw the ball. The final score was 11-5 in favor of Manhattan. (106) For several years around 1928, the local team was composed almost entirely of Indians. There were always several Indians on the team and they were among the best players. The only trouble was that they seemed to get discouraged quicker than the whites. In 1935, when there were a number of young fellows from the University of Nevada working in the mines, the team was very good. Scott Motors of Reno sent a team up to play with Round Mountain and beat them badly. Since the mines have been inactive, baseball has not been played. (107)
In 1910, there was talk of building a tennis court in Round Mountain. A tennis club was to be formed, with a limit of twenty members and dues of $5 month. (108) Nothing ever came of it.
During 1928, the high school, boys and girls together, began playing basketball in the town hall. Some of the townspeople who were interested also played with them. Games were sometimes played between two teams formed of high school students and townspeople, and sometimes between teams of Round Mountain and Manhattan high schools. These games have had to be discontinued in recent years because there are so few high school students and due to lack of interest among the townspeople. (109)
Attempts to form baseball and softball teams among the girls and women of Round Mountain have been unsuccessful. Attempts to form basketball teams among them have had similar success. (110)
Petty thieving has occurred at various times in Round Mountain. In 1909 there was talk of organizing a committee to see that the worst characters were made to leave town. This occurred after the Round Mountain Mercantile was broken into and the thieves were frightened away when a revolver went off. The next night they broke into the cellar in back of the store but did not seem to get anything. A watchman at the Fairview Mill was bound by a masked man who then shut down the mill to get the amalgam. The superintendent was aroused when the mill stopped, and he freed the watchman. One of the saloons was robbed of a fine collection of gold specimens, money in the cash register, and two revolvers.(111)
There were no more attempts to rob any of the stores for some years. About 1930, a boy in his early teens broke into the mercantile after it had closed for the day. The manager returned to see about something and was grappled in the dark. He had to fight for his life, for he was a slight man and the boy was larger than he. His hand happened to touch a can on the shelf, and he grabbed it up and brought it down on the youngster's head. The boy was placed on probation for a year or so. (112)
In 1909 an attempt to hold up the stage carrying bullion, by building a rock barricade across the road, failed. (113) About 1934, Buddy Nimmy tried to hold up the stage carrying bullion to Austin. Someone else engineered the hold-up and later became frightened, for he never showed up with Nimmy. Someone, probably the one who engineered the affair, sent a letter to the constable. Nimmy was captured near the Austin summit and readily admitted to the affair. Had he kept still, all that would have happened to him would have been a fine for carrying a gun. As it was he was sent to the penitentiary for several years. When last heard of he was working as a cartoonist in Hollywood. (114)
About 1914, Henry Kruger murdered John McWilliams, a gambler. Kruger followed McWilliams to his claim in Shoshone on the pretense of looking at the property and then shot McWilliams in the back with a shotgun as he went into a tunnel. On his way back to town, Kruger threw one of McWilliams's overshoes in a shaft and the other into the sagebrush; they were later found by Jimmy Darrough, an Indian sent out to track down the murderer. The motive was robbery, for McWilliams always carried his money with him and had a large roll of bills seen at a poker game two nights before the murder. Kruger's house was searched, but the money was never found, although many items that had been missing for years were recovered, including a pair of spectacles. Kruger was sent to the penitentiary and died there. He came up for parole several times but never got it. (115)
In the early 192os, a man committed suicide on Stebbins Hill about ten o'clock at night by sitting on a box of dynamite. The largest piece found of him was a part of his left foot. Several years before, another man did the same thing on the Blue Jacket claim. He laid the dynamite on his chest, however. One of the most tragic killings came about when two drunken Indians quarreled and one of them went to the constable and complained. The constable is said to have told the Indian, "Oh, go shoot him," and that is what happened. The Indian who was shot did not receive proper care and died; his shooter spent several years in the penitentiary. Both men had families living in the area. (116)
The wind used to blow hard a great deal more than it does now. In June 1908, the wind blew down several houses on the lower slope of Round Mountain, leveled the Tarbell annex, and scattered washing [i.e., laundry hanging on clothes lines] up to Jefferson. In February 1909, a part of a house was blown down and another on Main Street was blown 10 feet askew on its foundations. It played havoc with the telephone lines and made communication impossible for some time. The following February, a house was blown over while a man was sleeping in it. He first thought it was an earthquake when it went over on its side. He started to get up, but before he could make his way out of the house, it tipped over to its roof. He was not hurt but was shaken up. (117)
In August 1930, a cloudburst struck Round Mountain about 7:30 p.m. and carried away half of the mercantile and the porch of the hotel, caved in the hotel floor, demolished one building and a shed, carried the former Round Mountain Banking Corporation safe almost 200 yards, and scattered wood and merchandise for 2 miles down into the valley. Several cars were filled with mud, and the town was without water for two days, as the pipeline was broken about 2 miles east of town and a section of it carried away. (118)
Another cloudburst hit the town around 3 p.m. on an August day in 1938. The same mercantile suffered damage, as the section that had been replaced was again carried away. The mercantile's owners were closing out and planning to move to Silver Peak in a day or two, but they left that day, giving what merchandise was not ruined by the water to the Indians who cleaned the sand out of the building. The town was left without a mercantile for almost a month before another was started. The hotel was also damaged and since that time has not been occupied by guests because it is not safe. (119)
Round Mountain's two-story hotel was built by Fred Tarbell and was officially opened with a dance on January 19, 1907. (120) An annex was added in June 1908. Joe Connors planned to build a hotel near the Athletic Club hall, but did not because the town began to quiet down. (121) A Miners' Union hospital was built about 1907 and later used as a residence up to about 1925, when it was fixed over and used as the high schoo1.(122)
Quite a number of adobe houses were built on the lower slopes of Round Mountain and Stebbins Hill. These houses were highly praised in the Nugget as being cool in summer and warm in winter, although fear that the walls would crumble had been expressed at first.(123) Tents boarded up half way, having a board floor but no furniture of any kind, rented for $25 a month in November 1907. By January 1909, the tents had given way to frame buildings. About this time, a stone building covering about half a block was begun by John Harris for a secondhand store, but it was never finished because the town became too quiet. (124) The rock walls are still standing, but the roof and floors caved in long ago. Three large cellars were built of bottles, and one is still in use today.
Charles Wittenburg of Tonopah, who had a freighting company, was doing most of the hauling north of Tonopah. (125) He sometimes hauled ore from both Round Mountain and Manhattan. During 1928, when so many houses were being moved to Round Mountain from Tonopah, Wittenburg's trucks did much of the hauling. Several times since then a truckload or two of ore has been hauled to Tonopah by some of Wittenburg's trucks. (126)
A young burro called Daniel became quite a pet of the town for a time in 1908. When he was thirsty he would go to a saloon door and bray. When he was hungry he would go to a restaurant and bray. He was always given food or a drink whenever he asked for it. Within a month or two he became both a bum and a nuisance for whenever a saloon door was open he went in and drank what was offered him. If it was not open he would bray until it was, then he would walk in and up to the bar for a drink. (127)
Burros were plentiful around town, some being used to pack ore and some just roaming around. The children rode them a lot. The burros would not stay out by the creeks, where there was grass, but hung around town and broke into people's yards and destroyed their flowers and trees. About 1933, some were given to prospectors and others to people who could use and would care for them; the rest were taken out of town and shot. (128)
Two large bands of wild horses ran between Round Mountain and Manhattan for years. In October 1910, Indians captured 224 head and sold them for $18—$19 each for use in the southern cotton fields. (129) Sometimes some of the ranchers captured them for their own use. Gradually most of them were caught or killed off. A small herd still roams between Cloverdale and Peavine. (130)
In November 1931, a three-year-old boy from Manhattan was lost up Jefferson Canyon. An all-night search failed to find him, and little hope was held for his being found alive because he was a frail youngster and the night was bitter cold. The next day the Round Mountain high school students, Boy Scouts from Tonopah, and as many others as could from Round Mountain, Manhattan, Big Smoky Valley, Tonopah, and Austin joined in the search, but the night passed with no sight of the boy. At about 6 a.m. on the third morning, he was found by "Happy" Sherlock of Tonopah, who accidentally stumbled upon him asleep under a juniper tree. He had crawled under it, protected by a heavy branch. The boy could not have gotten out without help, as he was too weak and the branch was too heavy. John Rossi, an Indian, was tracking him and had found where he had spent the first night—in a sheltered spot among some rocks. Rossi would have located the boy shortly for he was relatively close when the boy was found. Bloodhounds were brought up in an airplane by Keith Scott from Reno, but the boy was found before the plane arrived. This story was dramatized over the Death Valley Days program about 1935 .(131)
Private pilot license issued to Lucile R. Berg, January 12, 1951. Courtesy Lucile R. Berg
Radiotelephone operator permit issued to Lucile R. Berg, December 29, 1950 - Courtesy Lucile R. Berg
Mining in Big Smoky Valley
The Millett district was established in 1863. Its most important mine of that period was the Buckeye Mine, discovered in 1865 and located in Summit Canyon. (1)
In March 1906, a strike of more than 2 feet of $ 200-a-ton ore was made in the hills behind Millett Ranch, 5-6 miles north of Summit canyon. The ore resembled that of Manhattan, and a new district was formed at the Millett store. About seventy people were believed to be in the district. The townsite of Pueblo was laid out at the base of the mountains between two running streams, and a mill was ordered. In a short time Pueblo contained sixty tents, a dozen frame buildings, and about 5oo residents. The Manuel Mining Company uncovered $50 ore, though some of the dirt panned nearly all gold. A 3-foot ledge of $5,000 ore was discovered near a skeleton on the last day of March. Three townsites were laid out—Pueblo, Millett, and Gold Center—and by that May the population was 300-400. The first shipment of 50 tons was hauled to Austin and shipped by railroad to Salt Lake City. (2)
In January 1907, it was reported that a ten-stamp mill was soon to be built. In September, returns averaged $344.27 a ton, and second-class rock averaged $1 18 a ton. The ore was mostly gold but there was some silver.(3) The property looked good in 1908. In 1909, a rich surface discovery was made 6 miles south of Millett that assayed as high as $206 in gold. A month or two later the Manuel Mining Company reported a discovery of 4o percent copper ore running $12 in silver. W. F. Corf, who lived at Millett for years, made a lead, silver, and gold discovery of better than $100 in May 1909. (4)
The Albion-Millett property was sold in 1911 to some Los Angeles businessmen, who were to build a bunkhouse and boarding house. They wanted a ten-stamp mill for the gold-silver ore, which ran over $100 a ton and was free milling.(5) A five-stamp mill was operated in the Millett district by the Nevada National Company from 1911 to 1913. Production was continuous in the district until about 1916.(6) In May 1927, free gold assaying between $300 and $1,000 a ton was found near Millett.' The mines have worked intermittently since then, ore being shipped to the smelter by way of Austin.
All the canyons in the Toiyabe Range have been prospected and worked from time to time. Gold and silver have been found at various places.(8) In 1909, gold was discovered in some of the canyons north of Millett. (9) In 1911, gold was discovered in a canyon halfway between Gendron's and Bowman's ranches that assayed at $75 and $144 a ton at a depth of not over 8 feet. Gold was also discovered in Bowman's canyon. Work was going on in a canyon 4 miles south of Millett, and a five-stamp concentration mill and store were expected to be finished there shortly.(10)
The frame buildings at Millett, including a fair-sized hotel, have been torn down for a good many years, but several adobe and willow houses remain. The store building is still there but has only been used as a storeroom for the past fifteen years. A new schoolhouse erected a number of years ago is not in use now as the district was abandoned in 1939 for lack of pupils. (11)
Birch Creek lies north of Kingston Canyon and is the first creek crossed coming down Big Smoky Valley from Austin. It was discovered and worked during the middle i86os. A mill was built at the mouth of the creek for the Big Smoky Mine, but it only ran a few days. (12)
In 1920, Jack Cahill found high-grade gold in his mine at Birch Creek. Five thousand ounces had a value of $109,000. Steel doors were put on the tunnel to protect the mine from high-graders, but these doors were repeatedly broken. (13) A little work still goes on there now and then.
In 1904 the Tonopah Bonanza reported the sale of some claims in the Toiyabe Range, 2 1/2 miles north of Ophir, which would put it in Wisconsin Canyon, lying between Ophir and Summit canyons. the ore averaged $75 a ton, half of which was in lead, with $15 in silver and $5 in gold. Part of the ore ran $180 a ton; some ran as high as $2,000. It was estimated that there was $ 150,000 worth of ore in sight. In all, Wisconsin produced about a quarter of a million dollars. (14)
A little work went on along the North and South Twin rivers. In October 1909, a property in the North Twin canyon was sold for $20,000. In 1928, a Ford was packed into South Twin on burros to operate a small mill (15)
In September 1905 a claim near Belcher Canyon—the canyon just south of South Twin—had a ledge outcropping that assayed at over $10 in gold and silver. (16)
In August 1906, a rich ledge of silver and gold was discovered 12 miles south of Millett, directly opposite Round Mountain. This would put it in Broad Canyon, the canyon just north of Jett. In September 1909, eight feet of silver ore running better than $200 a ton was discovered. Gold was also found, and a boom was predicted. (17) One man lived and worked there for years but never found much worthwhile.
Graphite was discovered in 1908 in Wall Canyon, the second canyon south of Jett. In 1910 antimony, silver, and copper were discovered there and worked a little. (18) In about 1938 antimony was again worked for several years. (19)
In April 1903, a silver strike assaying $5o and $125 was made 8 miles west of Cloverdale. In February 1905, the property was said to be booming, and by December the townsite of Ardivey, the Indian name for porphyry, was secured. The ore was partly oxidized quartz and ran between $25 and $5o a ton in gold. It came from a 6-8 foot ledge that averaged $5o a ton. In January 1906, the Red Spring district looked good and was expected to be shipping ore in sixty days. Eight tons of ore averaging $22.50 a ton was discovered while sinking a shaft; it netted $1,780. Plenty of water could be secured from Black Spring, which yielded 4o inches of water a year. there was also plenty of wood. The ore was shipped 3o miles to Millers. (20)
In May 1907, a strike of horn and ruby silver and stephanite was made at the head of Reese River.(21) In 1909 the Cloverdale Mine at Golden, 72 miles south of Austin, was sold at a big price. In March of that year, the Orizaba property had samples assaying $52 a ton on a 20-ton lot. That December, a 3o-ton capacity roller mill was being installed. It was expected to yield $20 a ton and to be in operation by the first of the year. (22) Production continued up until 1919, and a little placer gold was mined 4 miles east of the Cloverdale ranch. (23)
Quicksilver has been mined in Mariposa Canyon intermittently for a number of years. Around 1928, a retort was set up in the canyon and operated for several years. Quicksilver was probably worked some in the early days too, or at least the region was prospected for it is close to the Spanish Belt mines that worked in the 1960. (24)
Around 1904, gold was discovered on the surface at Moore's Creek, located 15 miles from Round Mountain at the north end of Mount Jefferson. C. A. Anderson made the discovery while riding for cattle. In September 1905, the Anderson brothers and F. J. Jones sold their property to a San Francisco buyer. In January 1908, a strike that ran $75 in silver and a few dollars in gold was made while doing location work. Five leasers were soon at work on a 3-foot ledge averaging $40 in gold and silver. The Moore's Creek zone extended 4 miles, and an assay running $906.60 in gold and $70.91 in silver was made by W. H. Berg in April of that year. A small camp was established there for a time. That December, a vein was found that averaged $103 in gold and $2.55 in silver. (25) Not a great deal of work was done, but some ore was taken out and shipped to Round Mountain and milled. A little prospecting was done in 1939, but nothing of particular value was found. (26)
Two Nearby Rushes,
Weepah is located on Lone Mountain, 20 miles due west of Tonopah. Mines on Lone Mountain operated in the early days and again after the discovery of Tonopah. In 1901 or 1902, Dick Patterson discovered ore and related his find to James Darrough. Darrough staked the ground and made a rich strike there in April 1902. He named the place Weepah, which means rain water; however, water had to be hauled around 6 miles from a spring. That July, Dick Patterson received $20,000 for his share in the sale of the property to a Philadelphia company. In November, this company said it could not get a clear title to the Weepah property so refused to buy it. (1)
In February 1927, Frank Horton Jr. and Leonard Traynor made a discovery at Weepah that led to one of the wildest mining rushes seen for a good many years. The town got more publicity in a week than Goldfield got in four years. Newspapers all over the United States carried articles about it. (2)
That March, they laid the proof of their discovery in the hands of an assayer. It assayed $78,000. Horton had bought the mine from Jimmy Darrough for $25,000. There were 120 cars, 2oo men and boys, and 4 women on the ground within a day or so after the discovery. Over 200 cars and 500 people visited Weepah within a week. A 2-foot rock 10 inches thick revealed a mass of yellow metal when broken open. This time, water had to be hauled 4 miles. The discoverers were offered from $2,000 to $ 10,000 for claims. A handful of dirt panned $6 in gold, while thirteen sacks picked from the hillside yielded between $13,000 and $20,000. The population grew rapidly, and by the last of March a daily mail was wanted. (3)
A committee was selected to settle all differences, a townsite was looked over, and arrangements were made for the price of lots and the leasing of blocks. (4) Discoveries were made right and left. The town was wild in more ways than one. Tents and wooden buildings dotted the mountainside, and gambling and drinking were in plain view. For a time after the first discovery, the tunnel from which the ore was taken was guarded by men with shotguns, and no one was allowed near. An old man was beaten to death in May 1927 and robbed of $5oo. The suspect was caught in California and pleaded guilty to the charge. That September he was sentenced to ten years to life for the murder. (5)
A post office and a daily mail service were established in June 1927. This was better treatment than Round Mountain and Manhattan had gotten when they were discovered. The mail contract was let for three years. In September of that year, the mines were examined by some San Francisco men. The ore was shipped to Millers or Silver Peak for milling. (6)
Gradually the excitement died down and people began leaving as the spectacular finds made at first gave out and the ore did not prove as rich as it was first thought to be. By the end of the year the majority of people had left and only those having property remained. A little work went on for a time, but finally everyone left because the ore was too low-grade to be worked.
In about 1934 or 1935, the property was taken over by a company for whom J. C. Perkins was the superintendent. A mill, bunkhouse, cookhouse, repair shop, and other necessary buildings were erected as well as about two dozen residences. A new road was built from the highway across part of an alkali flat west of Lone Mountain. The distance to Tonopah over this road was 40 miles, but only the last 12 miles were dirt road. A line was extended from the Nevada-California Power main line, and wells were dug at the edge of the alkali flat and pumping machinery installed. Water was hauled to town by truck for domestic purposes but was piped to the mill. The nearest post office was then in Tonopah, and the company sent a truck after mail and supplies daily, except Sunday. The mine worked until 1939, when the mill and equipment were moved to Northumberland. (7)
Gold was discovered in 1907 in the mountains to the east of Walker Lake. Named Rawhide, the mining camp was the scene of a gold rush said to be one of the maddest in mining history. In about six months' time Rawhide had a population of 10,000, not because of the value of the mines but because of speculation and advertising. (8) In 1908 the Round Mountain Nugget published an article in which it declared that because false literature about the mines was being sent through the U.S. mail, the government should be asked to step in and do something about it. (9) In September 1908, a fire swept through the town and left 3,500 people homeless. It was started by an upset gasoline stove and spread rapidly when dynamite in a store exploded and scattered the flames over a wide area. Eight blocks were destroyed in 55 minutes. The buildings were flimsy and a wind was blowing. Dynamite had to be used to gain control of the flames. Supplies were sent from Tonopah by railroad and automobile as soon as news of the disaster was received. The town began rebuilding the next day and had expectations of being rebuilt in 60-90 days. (10)
There were 46 hoists in Rawhide in September 1908, and the railroad from Schurz was expected to reach there in October. A 50-ton mill was planned, and a deal was on to build a smelter at Walker Lake and haul the ore to it by railroad. By January 1909, a second mill of 100 stamps was planned. (11)
Rawhide was almost washed away in August 1909 by a cloud-burst. Five hundred people were made homeless and between $75,000 and $100,000 worth of damage was done. The roar of water was heard 5 miles away. People began leaving about then, and the town gradually dwindled in size. (12)
In 1928 there seemed likely to be a revival of the camp for a time, but it did not materialize. In 1941 the post office was abandoned. Tungsten has been found there recently and Rawhide may yet revive. (13)
Most of the material concerning the mines of this region has been taken from newspapers, and the accounts regarding the mining production are not always accurate. Many of the predictions about the future of a mine were colored by the opinions of promoters and the hopes of the individuals concerned. Often the value of the production of a mine was exaggerated. Sometimes no mention of a mine or prospect was found after the first glowing account, a clear indication that the prospect had very little if any real value. These accounts have been given according to the best information obtainable.
The region included in Reese River, Big Smoky, Monitor, and Ralston valleys covers the central and southern portion of the state of Nevada. Many of the mines were discovered and worked in the early mining period, about the same time as those in Virginia City. The amount of bullion they produced is fairly large, but little was heard about them because they were so far away and travel was difficult. After 1876, mining became relatively unimportant, because the price of silver was low and most of the high-grade ore had been worked out.
Prospectors had for years traveled over the very spots on which, after 1900, gold was discovered and such camps as Tonopah, Goldfield, Manhattan, and Round Mountain came into existence. The reason for this was that the prospectors were looking for silver instead of gold. They did not think some kinds of formations were worth prospecting and so continued on to what they considered more favorable formations.
The years immediately prior to 1900 were dull years all over Nevada. Spurred on by the discovery at Tonopah, people began prospecting nearby, and within a few years discoveries were made in this region and in various parts of the state. The establishment of Tonopah and Goldfield helped not only this particular region but the whole state, for people began moving to Nevada with hopes of making a fortune. Failing in that, many turned to other fields and so remained in the state. Just as most of the money taken from Virginia City was invested in San Francisco, much of that taken from Tonopah and Goldfield was invested in the East, in New York and other large cities.
Ranching has always been carried on in this region. Often a man owning a ranch spent much time prospecting or grubstaked others so they could prospect. Other men, on losing their position with a mining company when that company's mine closed for some reason, took up land and started ranching. Ranching in the region has always been of secondary importance to mining, but had it not been for ranching there would not have been as many people in this region as there were before 1900. Ranching tided many people over during the years in which mining was of little importance. When mining camps were active they offered a market for such things as hay, grain, meat, and vegetables.
Ranching and mining go well together in this region. Almost every rancher here knows something about mines and often owns one or is interested in one. Some ranchers find it profitable to work part time in a mine, either their own or for a company, while work is slack on the ranch.
Tonopah and Goldfield are the best known camps, having had more publicity than any of the others and being the largest producers. However, Manhattan and Round Mountain have produced their share of ore, and dividends, and have employed a number of men for many years.
Other valuable minerals besides gold and silver have been found in this region. So far no big-scale findings of these ores have been made, but individuals continue working the properties they own, and some day another big discovery may be made.
Lucile (left) and her mother (second from right) in Round Mountain,
circa 195 8. Others unidentified. Courtesy Roger Berg.
1. Elevations of mountains from maps of the State Highway Department, Carson City, Nevada, September 1941.
2. Round Mountain Nugget, May 6, 1908.
4. As told to Mrs. J. W Berg by Mrs. Laura Darrough and others, interview, July 1941.
5. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, July 1941.
6. Bancroft Scraps (Nevada Miscellaneous, Vol. 2), Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.
7. Charles Humphrey, interview, July 1941.
8. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
9. Claud Mealman, letter, September 1941. io. Bancroft Scraps.
11. Myron Angel, History of Nevada, p. 518 (Oakland, Calif.: Thompson and West, (1881).
12. C. C. Boak, letter to W.P.A. Writer's Project, 303 S. Center St., Reno, Nevada, 1941.
13. Claud Mealman, letter, September 1941.
1. Mrs. Laura Darrough, interview, Summer 1940.
2. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 512.
3. F. N. Fletcher, History of Nevada (Reno: A. Carlisle and Company,.(1929), pp. 150-158; J. C. Fremont, Memoirs of My Life, vol. i (Chicago: Belford, Clarke, and Company, 1887), p. 435.
4. Fremont, Memoirs, p. 3.
5. Mrs. J. J. Weeks, interview, July 1941.
6. Mrs. Laura Darrough, interview, Summer 1940.
7. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, July 1941.
8. Fletcher, History of Nevada, pp. 150-158; Fremont, Memoirs, p. 435.
9. Fletcher, History of Nevada, p. 38.
10. Angel, History of Nevada, pp. 105-I06.
11. James G. Scrugham, History of Nevada, vol. 1 (Chicago: American Historical Society, 1935), p. 106.
12. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 106.
13. Capt. J. H. Simpson, Report of Explorations Across the Great Basin of the Territory of Utah for a Direct Wagon Route from Camp Floyd to Genoa, in Carson Valley in 1859 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1876), pp.73-79.
1. Sam P. Davis, History of Nevada, vol. 2 (Reno: Elms Publishing Company, 1913), p. 961.
2. Belmont Courier, April 11, 1874.
3. Nye County News, September 23,1865.
4. Silver Bend Reporter, May 4, 1867.
5. Belmont Courier, April 11,1874.
6. Tonopah Miner, June 5,1909.
7. Tonopah Daily Times, July 31, 1928.
8. F. C. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources of Nevada (Reno: Nevada Newsletter Publishing Company, 1923), p. 194.
9. Nye County News, September 23,1865.
10. Ibid., September 2, 1865. [The forty-stamp mill was never built.]
11. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 526.
12. As told to J. W. Berg by John McLeod, interview, July 1941.
13. Nye County News, August 19, 1865.
14. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 526.
15. Silver Bend Reporter, April 4, 1868.
16. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 194.
17. Mt. Champion, October 31, 1868.
18. Belmont Courier, February 14, 1874.
19. Ibid., November 21 and December 5, 1874.
20. Ibid., March 20, May 1, June 5, and December 3, 1875.
21. Ibid., December 6, 1879.
22. G. W. Schmidtlein, interview, July 1941.
23. As told to J. W. Berg by John McLeod, interview, July 1941.
24. G. W Schmidtlein, interview, July 1941.
25. Tonopah Daily Sun, May 29, 1907.
26. Round Mountain Nugget, January 23, 1909.
27. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 194.
28. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 526.
29. G. W. Schmidtlein, interview, July 1941. 3o. Nye County News, August 19, 1865.
31. Round Mountain Nugget, January 23, 1909.
32. Author's recollection.
33. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 517.
34. Mt. Champion, December 12, 1868.
35. Belmont Courier, August 1, 1874.
36. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
37. Bancroft Scraps (Nev. Misc. Vol. 2).
38. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 112.
39. Tonopah Miner, May 22, 1909.
40. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
41. Tonopah Miner, May 20, June Jo, August 5, August 12, and September 2, 1911.
42. Tonopah Daily Times, August 8 and August to, 1928.
43. G. S. Schmidtlein, interview, July 1941.
44. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 112.
45. Silver Bend Reporter, May 4 and December 7, 1857.
46. Ibid., May 2, 1868.
47. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 178.
48. Silver Bend Reporter, July is, 1868.
49. Mt. Champion, August 26 and November 7, 1868.
50. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
51. Tonopah Bonanza, August 11, 1908.
52. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 178.
53. Reno Evening Gazette (Mining Page), July 5, 1941.
1. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 160.
2. Tonopah Miner, July 2, 1904.
3. Bancroft Scraps (Nev. Misc., Vol. 2).
4. Scrugham, History of Nevada, vol. 1, p. 178.
5. Bancroft Scraps.
6. Bancroft Scraps.
7. As was noted in the previous chapter, they even petitioned the Nevada Supreme Court for a restraining order. Silver Bend Reporter, May 4, 1867.
8. Silver Bend Reporter, January 4 and July 8, 1868.
9. Bancroft Scraps.
10. Silver Bend Reporter, April 4, 1868.
11. J. A. Carpenter, interview, September 1941.
12. Silver Bend Reporter, April 11, 1868.
13. Bancroft Scraps.
14. Silver Bend Reporter, June 6, 1868.
15. Belmont Courier, March 14, 1874.
16. Silver Bend Reporter, June 10, 1868.
17. Belmont Courier, February 21 and September 12, 1874.
18. J. A. Carpenter, interview, November 1941.
19. Belmont Courier, February 11, 1876; October 20, 1877; February 2, 1878; February 21, 1874; and February i8 and March 24, 1876.
20. Belmont Courier, December 19, 1874; January 30, 1875; and February 15, 1879.
21. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 160.
22. Belmont Courier, May 20, 1899, and October 27, 1900.
23. Tonopah Bonanza, January 3, 1903, and January 16, 1904.
24. Ibid., March 9, 1907; March 16, 1907; June 26, 1908; October 22, 1908; and December 5, 1908.
25 .Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 160.
26. Manhattan Post, April 8, 1911.
27. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 160.
28. J. A. Carpenter, "Old Desert Camp Discussed by Mining Man," Reno Evening Gazette, August 30, 1941.
29. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
30. Ibid.; Carpenter, "Old Desert Camp Discussed."
31. As told to her niece, Mrs. A. H. Read, interview, September 1941.
32. Carpenter, "Old Desert Camp Discussed." [After Lucile Berg finished writing her thesis, all gold and silver mines in the United States were shut down as part of the war effort, and no mining remains there now. Belmont's population in 2010 was seven residents.]
33. Belmont Courier, January 9, 1875; June 27, 1874; October 15, 1875; and September 22, 1876.
34. Belmont Courier, March 26, 1898, and October 14, 1899.
35. Tonopah Daily Times, October 4 and October 30, 1928.
36. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 181-182.
37. Bancroft Scraps.
38. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
39. Silver Bend Reporter, May 2, 1868. 40. Nye County News, February 29, 1868.
41. Belmont Courier, March 20, 1875.
42. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 18 — 82.
43. Silver Bend Reporter, May 4, 1867.
44. Belmont Courier, January 28, 1876, and September 13, 1879.
45. Charles Humphrey, interview, July 1941.
46. Tonopah Bonanza, November 30, 1901.
47. Tonopah Miner, August 13, 1910.
48. Tonopah Bonanza, November 3o, 19o1, and May 3,1902.
49. Tonopah Miner, August 13, 19to; January 7, 191 i; and April 29, 1911. 5o. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 172.
51. Belmont Courier, February 17, 1877.
52. Ibid., July 6,1878; September 20, 1879; and January 3, January 24, and January 31, 1880.
53. Tonopah Bonanza, June 14, 1902.
54. J. W. Berg, interview, July 1941.
55. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 171.
56. Belmont Courier, June 20, 1874.
57. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources.
58. Belmont Courier, October 17, 1874.
59. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 171.
6o. Belmont Courier, March 14, 1874; September 5, 1874; and May 8, 1875.
61. Fred Linsea, interview, July 1941.
62. Belmont Courier, May 16, 1874, and January 16, 1875.
65. Ibid., September 3, November 26, and December 31, 1875.
66. Tonopah Bonanza, December 15, 1906.
67. George A. Packard, Mining and Scientific Press, July 3, 1909.
68. Tonopah Bonanza, June 16, 1906.
69. Packard, Mining and Scientific Press.
70. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 171.
71. Tonopah Bonanza, June 1, 1907.
72. Ibid., October 17, 1908, and March 25, 1909.
73. J. W. Berg, interview, July 1941.
74. Tonopah Bonanza, December 13, 1908, and March 25, 1909.
75. J. A. Carpenter, interview, October 1941.
76. Tonopah Bonanza, December 13, 1908.
77. Author's recollection.
78. Tonopah Bonanza, May 19, July 7, November 11, and November 13, 1928; and November 14, 1928.
I. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 515.
2. Bancroft Scraps, Miscellany (Nev. Indians).
3. Silver Bend Reporter, June to, 1868.
4. Belmont Courier, July 6, 1878.
5. Mrs. Laura Darrough, interview, 1940.
6. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
7. G. W. Schmidtlein, interview, 1941.
8. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 516.
9. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
11. Angel, History of Nevada, p. 515.
13. Tonopah Bonanza, May 8, 1908.
14. Mrs. Laura Darrough, interview, 1940.
15. Round Mountain Nugget, October 30, 1909.
16. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
17. Gathered while reading the Belmont Courier; also, author recollections.
1. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources; and Nevada Writers Project, Nevada-A Guide to the Silver State (Portland, Ore.: Binfords and Mort , 1940), both give the date as May 7; the date is given as May 19 in a letter from Butler in Thomas Wren, History of Nevada (New York: Lewis Publishing Company, 1904).
2. Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150.
3. Nevada Guide, pp. 225-227; Tonopah Miner, January 27 1904.
4. C. B. Glasscock, Gold in Them Hills (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1932), pp. 2I-25.
5. Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150.
7. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
8. Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150; Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
9. U. S. Geological Survey, Professional Papers, No. 42, 1905.
10. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
11. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
12. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
13. Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150; Belmont Courier, March 10, 1900.
14. Lincoln gives August 27; the Tonopah Miner and Wren give August 25.
15. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185; Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150; Glasscock, Gold in Them Hills, pp. 21-26.
16. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
17. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
18. Wren, History of Nevada, pp. 149-150.
19. Davis, History of Nevada, vol. 2, pp. 964-965.
22. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
24. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
25. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
26. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
27. Tonopah Bonanza, September 14 and November 2, 1901.
28. Tonopah Bonanza, June 5 and August 17, 1901.
29. Ibid., July 27, September 28, October 5, November 9, and December 7, 1901.
30. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904. 3i. Nevada Guide, pp. 225-227.
32. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
33. Ibid., January 18, 1902.
34. Tonopah Bonanza, August 9, August 16, October 4, and October 18, 1902.
35. Tonopah Miner, December 24, 1904, and April 30, 1904.
36. Tonopah Bonanza, May 31, 1902.
37. Ibid., April 11, 1903 .
38. Ibid., July 4, 1903.
39. Ibid., December 17, 1903, and February 4, April 1, April 29, and May 27, 1905.
40. Ibid., August 16, 1902, and March 17, 1906.
41. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
42. Tonopah Bonanza, May 9 and July 4, 1903.
43. Tonopah Miner, April 23, 1904.
44. Tonopah Bonanza, January 2, 1904-
45. Ibid., November 22, 1904-
46. Tonopah Miner, August 20 and December 24, 1904•
47. Tonopah Bonanza, July 8 and March 4, 1905; September 22, 1906.
48. Ibid., July 29, 1905.
49. Tonopah Daily Sun, September 9, 1907.
50. Tonopah Bonanza, May 12, 1908, and May 28, 1904.
51. Ibid., September 26 and November 7, 1908.
52. Tonopah Miner, August 14, 1909.
53. Tonopah Bonanza, February 19, 1909.
54. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
55. J. A. Carpenter, interview, 1941.
56. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp 184-185.
57. Jake Butler, interview, 1941; J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
58. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
59. Tonopah Miner, February 25, 1911. 6o. Tonopah Daily Times, 1941.
61. Tonopah Bonanza, November 23, 1901.
62. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
63. Tonopah Miner, July 23, 1904; Nevada Guide, pp. 225-227.
64. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 184-185.
65. Tonopah Miner, January 23, 1904.
66. Tonopah Bonanza, August 12, 1905.
67. Tonopah Miner, December 25, 1909.
68. Tonopah Bonanza, April 21, 1907.
69. "Reconstruction of Railroads in Southern Nevada to Serve Defense Plant Is Considered," Reno Evening Gazette, September 6, 1941.
70. B. F. W. Sawyer, Nevada Mining Rushes (M.A. Thesis, University of California Library, Berkeley), p. 74.
71. [Reference is missing. -Ed.]
72. Tonopah Bonanza, December 7, 1907.
73. Ibid.; Reno Evening Gazette, September 6, 1941.
74. Tonopah Daily Times, July 12 and August 29, 1928.
75. Inventory of the County Archives, No. 12, Nye County. Compiled by the W.P.A.
76. Ibid.; Reno Evening Gazette, September 6, 1941.
77. Tonopah Bonanza, June 27, 1903.
78. Ibid., October 1, 1904.
79. Ibid., March 8, 1902
80. Ibid., November 23, 1901.
81. Tonopah Bonanza, February 16, 1907.
82. Ibid., December 15, 1906.
83. Sawyer, Nevada Mining Rushes, p. 75.
84. Tonopah Miner, August 26, 1911.
85. T. A. Rickard, Mining and Scientific Press, April 25, 1908.
86. Tonopah Bonanza, February 21, 1903; Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, puts the date as December 2, 1902.
87. Rickard, Mining and Scientific Press, February 11, 1905.
89. Tonopah Bonanza, February 21, 1903.
90. Tonopah Miner, February 20, 1904.
91. Tonopah Bonanza, November 12 and December 19, 1903.
92. Tonopah Miner, July 29, 1911; and April 2, May 21, June 4, and June 11, 1904.
93. State Highway Department, Nevada Highways and Parks, November-December 1938.
94. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 67.
95. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1904.
96. State Highway Department, Nevada Highways and Parks.
97. Ibid., i.
98. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 67.
99. State Highway Department, Nevada Highways and Parks.
100. Tonopah Bonanza, January 27, 1910.
101. State Highway Department, Nevada Highways and Parks.
102. Tonopah Daily Sun, October 29, 1907.
103. Charles G. Yale, Mining and Scientific Press, February 23, 1907; Laura A. White, History of Labor Struggles in Goldfield, Nevada (M.A. Thesis, University of Nevada Library, Reno, Nevada).
104. Glasscock, Gold in Them Hills, pp. 302-305.
105. Mining and Scient0c Press, May 4, 1907.
106. Ibid.; Glasscock, Gold in Them Hills, pp. 302-305.
107. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 67.
108. Davis, History of Nevada, vol. 2, p. 859.
109. T. A. Rickard, Mining and Scientific Press, July 4, 1902.
110. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 67
111. B. F. Couch, interview, 1941.
112. Tonopah Bonanza, February 8, February 15, March 1, March 8, and April 26, 1902; August 29, 1903; December to, 1904; and November 8, 1908.
113. Belmont Courier, April 4 and April 25, 1874.
114. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 194, 195.
115. Mrs. Catherine Anderson, interview, 1941.
116. Tonopah Bonanza, July 26, 1902.
117. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 170.
118. Tonopah Bonanza, December 31, 1904, and May 20, 1905.
119. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 182-183.
120. Tonopah Bonanza, November 4, 1905.
121. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, p. 165.
122. Tonopah Miner, January 2, 1909.
123. Round Mountain Nugget, June 12 and June 26, 1909; Tonopah Miner, May 29, 1909.
124. Round Mountain Nugget, June 12 and June 25, 1909; Tonopah Miner, May 29, June 19, and July 17, 1909.
125. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 81-82.
126. Author's recollections.
127. J. A. Carpenter, interview, 1941.
1. Silver Bend Reporter, May 4, 1867.
2. Belmont Courier, May 26, 1877.
3. Charlie Humphrey, interview, July 1941.
4. Tonopah Bonanza, April 4, 1906.
5. Belmont Courier, October 25, 1879.
6. Tonopah Bonanza, June 24, 1905.
7. Ibid., August 5, 1905.
8. Ibid., August 5 and August 12, 1905.
9. Ibid., August 26, 1905; Charles Humphrey, interview, 1941.
10. Davis, History of Nevada, vol. 2, p. 967.
11. Tonopah Bonanza, September 2, 1905.
12. Ibid., August 12 and September 2, 1905.
13. Ibid., September 16, September 30, October 21, November and December 9, 1905.
14. Charles Humphrey, interview, 1941.
15. Tonopah Bonanza, May r t, 1907; and January 24 and March 22, 1908.
16. Ibid., December 9, 1905.
17. Ibid., January z7 and April 7, 1906.
18. Ibid., October 28, December 9, December 16, December 23, and December 30, 1905.
19. Nelson Rounsevell, Life Story of 'N. R."; or, Forty Years of Rambling, Gambling, and Publishing (Panama City, Panama: Panama American Publishing Company, 1933), pp. 47-58.
26. Tonopah Bonanza, January 6 and January 20, 1906.
27. Ibid., January 20, January 27, February 3, March 31, and April 4, 1906.
28. Ibid., February 3, 1906.
29. Tonopah Daily Sun, March 20 and October 9, 1907.
30. Tonopah Bonanza, February 24, March 3, March To, March 17, and April 4, 1906.
31. Ibid., January 5, 1907; Tonopah Daily Sun, August 28, 1907; Tonopah Bonanza, May 5, 1906.
32. Tonopah Bonanza, June 9, June 30, September 1, and September 8, 1906.
33. Ibid., October 13, 1906; and January 5, March 16, and March 30, 1907.
34. Tonopah Daily Sun, November 29 and December 13, 1907; Tonopah Bonanza, May 14, May 14, and May 16, 1908; Charles Humphrey, interview, 1941.
35. Ibid.; Tonopah Daily Sun.
36. Tonopah Bonanza, March r and May 15, 1908.
37. Ibid., June 20 and July 31, 1907.
38. Tonopah Daily Sun, April 13, April 22, May 20, and July 3, 1907; Charles Humphrey, interview, 1941.
39. Tonopah Bonanza, August 10, 1907.
40. Tonopah Daily Sun, September 7, 1907.
41. Tonopah Bonanza, September 14, 1907.
42. Tonopah Daily Sun, September 25, 1907.
43. Ibid., October 24 and October 25, 1907.
44. Ibid., April 16,1907.
45. Tonopah Bonanza, October 5, 1908.
46. Ibid., February 5, 1908, and February 24, 1909.
47. Ibid., March 12, 1909.
48. Tonopah Miner, April 17, 1909.
49. Author's recollection.
50. Tonopah Bonanza, November 9, 1907.
51. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 175-176.
52. Tonopah Bonanza, January 14, January 23, January 26, April 10, and June 25, 1909; Tonopah Miner, April 24 and May 22,1909, and January 1, 1910.
53. Tonopah Bonanza, February 26 and May 29, 1909.
54. I. W. Berg, interview, 1941; Tonopah Miner, March 4, 1911.
55. [Reference missing. —Ed.]
56. Tonopah Bonanza, February 26, May 29, September 16, and December 30, 1909.
57. Tonopah Miner, December i8, 1909, and January r, 1910.
58. Ibid., April 9, April 23, May 7, and December 31, 1910.
59. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 175-176.
60. Tonopah Miner, February 4, February it, March 25, March 29, and July 22, 1911.
61. Davis, History of Nevada, vol. 2, pp. 967-971.
62. Tonopah Miner, April 15 and August 5, 1911.
63. Author's recollection.
64. Tonopah Daily Sun, March 30, 1907.
65. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 175-176.
66. Tonopah Miner, May 30 and October 21, 1911.
67. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 175-176.
68. Author's recollection.
69. Tonopah Bonanza, January 14, 1909.
70. Author's recollection.
71. Reno Evening Gazette, September 24, 1941.
72. Charles Humphrey, interview, 1941.
73. Tonopah Daily Times, November 1, 1928.
74. [The properties have been worked intermittently over the years since Lucile wrote her thesis. In the early 2000s there was a big operation for a time. One mine is currently (2010) working, with a small placer down the gulch from Manhattan. —Ed.]
75. Tonopah Bonanza, December 30, 1905, and February 17, 1906.
76. Tonopah Miner, February 4, 1911.
77. Tonopah Bonanza, January 20, February 3, February 17, February 24, March 10, and March 17, 1906.
78. Tonopah Daily Sun, March 30, 1907.
79. Tonopah Bonanza, March 17 and March 31, 1905.
80. [Reference missing. —Ed.]
81. [Reference missing. —Ed.]
82. Fred Linsea, interview, 1941; Belmont Courier.
83. Tonopah Bonanza, September 22, 1906.
84. Ibid., September 22, October 6, October 13, October 29, and November 3, 1906.
85. Tonopah Daily Sun, September 7, 1907.
86. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1940.
1. J. P. Loftus, Mining and Scientific Press, October 23, 1909.
2. Round Mountain Nugget, February 29, 1908.
3. Mrs. J. J. Weeks, interview, July 1941.
4. G. W. Schmidtlein, interview, 1941.
5. W. H. Berg, interview, July 1941.
6. Round Mountain Nugget, August 7, 1909; Tonopah Bonanza, June 2, 1908.
7. Rounsevell, Life Story of N. R.," p. 58.
8. Round Mountain Nugget, December 18, 1909, and August 7, 1909.
9. Tonopah Bonanza, February
10. and March 1 o, 1906. Ia. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
11. W. H. Berg, interview, 1941.
12. Tonopah Bonanza, June 23, 1906.
13. Loftus, Mining and Scientific Press, October 23, 1909.
14. Tonopah Bonanza, April 7, 1906.
15. Round Mountain Nugget, July 11, 1908; November 27, 1909; and April 13, 1910.
16. Loftus, Mining and Scientific Press, October 23, 1909.
17. Round Mountain Nugget, February 1, 1908, and July 10, 1909.
18. Tonopah Bonanza, March 25, 1908.
19. Round Mountain Nugget, May 3o, June 13, and December 19, 1908.
20. Tonopah Bonanza, June 2, 1906.
21. Round Mountain Nugget, February 8, 1908.
22. Tonopah Bonanza, August 31, 1907; Round Mountain Nugget, August 14, 1909; G. A. Packard, Mining and Scientific Press, June 13, 1908.
23. Tonopah Bonanza, July 14 and August 4, 1906.
24. Ibid., May 26 and June 2, 1906.
25. Tonopah Daily Sun, September 25, 1907.
26. Round Mountain Nugget, January 23 and November 6, 1909.
27. Ibid., September 2, 1908.
28. Tonopah Bonanza, May 16, 1909.
29. Round Mountain Nugget, July 17 and September 4, 1909.
30. Tonopah Miner, September 23 and November 11, 1911.
31. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
32. Tonopah Bonanza, June 2, 1906.
33. Ibid., August 4 and August 25, 1906.
34. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
35. Tonopah Daily Sun, June 26, 1907.
36. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 180-181.
37. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
38. Round Mountain Nugget, August 7, 1909.
39. F. L. Ransome, Mining and Scientific Press, October 23, 1909.
40. Round Mountain Nugget, June 12, 1909.
41. Ibid., July 11, 1908.
42. Ibid., April 3, April 10, April 17, and April 24, 1909.
43. Ibid., April 30, 1910, May 2, 1908, and October 23, 1910.
44. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 180-181.
45. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
46. Author's recollection.
47. J. A. Carpenter, interview, November 1941.
48. Author's recollection.
49. Packard, Mining and Scientific Press, June 13, 1908.
5o. Round Mountain Nugget, June 6, 1908; Tonopah Bonanza, May 11, 1907.
51. Tonopah Bonanza, May 11, August 17, October 12, and October 25, 1907; and January 2 and January 24, 1908.
52. Round Mountain Nugget, May 2, 1908.
53. Tonopah Bonanza, June 2 and June 13, 1908.
54. Tonopah Miner, April is, June 3, June 24, and August 12, 1911.
55. Round Mountain Nugget, November 7, 1908, and January 29, 1910; Tonopah Bonanza, January 23, 1910.
56. Tonopah Bonanza, February 1, 1910.
57. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
58. Author's recollection.
59. Tonopah Bonanza, May 26, 1906, and March 9, 1907.
60. Round Mountain Nugget, June 26, 1909.
61. Tonopah Bonanza, October 26, 1907.
62. Ibid., July 15, 1909.
63. Round Mountain Nugget, August 21, September 4, September 13, October 9, October 16, and November 20, 1909.
64. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
65. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 180-18I.
66. Round Mountain Nugget, October 30 and November 9, 1909, and February 26, March 5, April 30, and October 23, 1910; Tonopah Bonanza, March 5, 1910; Tonopah Miner, November 26, 1910.
67. Tonopah Daily Sun, May 11 and July 12, 1907.
68. Tonopah Miner, September 30, 1911.
69. Round Mountain Nugget, January 16 and February 13, 1909.
70. Tonopah Miner, November 11 and December 2, 1911.
71. Ibid., October 14, 1911.
72. Tonopah Bonanza, December 12, 1907.
73. Round Mountain Nugget, April 25, 1908, and January 9 and March 13, 1909.
74. Tonopah Daily Times, June 28, 1928.
75. Tonopah Bonanza, March 26, 1904.
76. Tonopah Daily Times, April 11, 1928.
77. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
78. Rounsevell, Life Story of W. R.," pp. 58-65.
79. Round Mountain Nugget, August 1, December 5, and December 12, 1908, and February 6 and November 27, 1909.
80. Ibid., September 19 and July 18, 1908. 8i. Ibid., September 19, 1908.
82. Ibid., September 26, 1908.
83. Mrs. J. VV. Berg, interview, 1941.
84. Round Mountain Nugget, August 21, 1909.
85. Ibid., February 15, 1908.
86. Ibid., September 5, 1908.
87. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
88. Round Mountain Nugget, January 8, 1910.
89. Ibid., January 29, 1910.
90. Ibid., October 23, 1910.
91 .J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
92. Round Mountain Nugget, June 13, 1908.
93. Tonopah Bonanza, August 25, 1906.
94. Round Mountain Nugget, August 7, 1909.
95. Ibid., April 4 and May 30, 1908.
96. Mrs. W. R. Gibson, interview, March 1941.
97. Round Mountain Nugget, August 1, 1908.
98. Author's recollection.
99. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
100. Round Mountain Nugget, May 2, 1908.
101. Author's recollection.
102. Round Mountain Nugget, February 22 and March 14, 1908.
103. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
104. Author's recollection.
105. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
106. Round Mountain Nugget, June 6, 1908.
107. Author's recollection.
108. Round Mountain Nugget, May 21, 1910.
109. Author's recollection. i io. Ibid.
110.Round Mountain Nugget, June 19, 1909, and February 27, 1909.
112. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
114. Round Mountain Nugget, August 28, 1909.
115. J W. Berg, interview, 1941.
116. Author's recollection; J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
117. Round Mountain Nugget, June 27, 1908, February 6, 1909, and February 19, 1910.
118. Author's recollection.
120. W. H. Berg, interview, 1941.
121. Round Mountain Nugget, June 20, 1908.
122. Mrs. W. H. Berg, interview, 1941.
123. Round Mountain Nugget, September 5, 1908.
124. Mrs. J. W. Berg, interview, 1941.
125. Round Mountain Nugget, August 7, 1909.
126. Author's recollection.
127. Round Mountain Nugget, August 15 and November 21, 1908.
128. Author's recollection.
129. Round Mountain Nugget, October 2, 1910.
130. Mrs. J. J. Weeks, interview, 1941.
131. Author's recollection.
1. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 177-178.
2. Tonopah Bonanza, March 3, March 17, March 31, May 12, and June 23, 1906.
3. Ibid., January 19 and September 7, 1907.
4. Round Mountain Nugget, February 29, 1908, and January 30, May 8, and May 15, 1909; Tonopah Miner, May 15, 1909.
5. Tonopah Miner, December 23, 1911.
6. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 177-178.
7. Tonopah Daily Times, May 14, 1927.
8. Author's recollection.
9. Round Mountain Nugget, November 13, 1909.
10. Tonopah Miner, December 9, 1911, and February 4, 1911 [1912?).
11. Author's recollection.
12. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 109-110.
13. Tonopah Daily Times, August 8, 1928.
14. Tonopah Bonanza, January 9, 1904.
15. Round Mountain Nugget, October 23, 1909; Tonopah Daily Times, August 8, 1928.
16. Tonopah Bonanza, September 30, 1905.
17. Ibid., September 15, 1906; Tonopah Miner, September 11, 1909; Round Mountain Nugget, September 4, I909.
18. Round Mountain Nugget, December 19, 1908, and May 14, 1910.
19. Author's recollection.
20. Tonopah Bonanza, April 11, 1903; February 4 and December 6, 1905; and January 6, I906.
21. Ibid., May 4, 1907.
22. Tonopah Miner, May 8, March 13, and December 18, 1909.
23. Lincoln, Mining Districts and Mineral Resources, pp. 165-166.
24. Author's recollection.
25. Tonopah Bonanza, September 16, 1905, and January 14, 1908.
26. Author's recollection.
1. Tonopah Bonanza, March 8, 1901, and May 3, July 5, November 15, and December 20, 1902.
2. Tonopah Daily Times, March 12, 1927.
3. Ibid., March 4, March 5, March 8, March 9, March 12, March 13, March 26, March 29, April 3, and April 9, 1927.
5. Ibid., May 14, May 17, and September 29, 1927.
6. Ibid., June 1, June 23, and September 18, 1927.
7. Author's recollection.
8. Reno Evening Gazette, September 4, 1941.
9. Round Mountain Nugget, April 4, 1908.
10. Tonopah Bonanza, September 5, September 6, and September 7, 1908.
11. Ibid., September 5, September 29, October 29, and November 11, 1908, and January 29, 1909.
12. Ibid., September I, 1909.
13. Tonopah Daily Times, August 25, 1928; Reno Evening Gazette, September 4, 1941.
Angel, Myron F., ed., History of Nevada with Illustrations and Biographical Sketches °fits Prominent Men and Pioneers (Oakland, Calif.: Thompson and West, 1881).
Bancroft Scraps, Nevada Indians, Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, California.
Bancroft Scraps, Nevada Miscellaneous, Vol. 2, Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, California.
Davis, Sam P., History of Nevada (Reno: Elms Publishing Company, 1913).
Fletcher, F. N., Early Nevada (Reno: A. Carlisle and Company, 1929). Fremont, J. C., Memoirs of My Life (Chicago: Belford, Clarke, and Company, 1887).
Glasscock, C. B., Gold in ?hem Hills (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1932).
Lincoln, F. C., Mining Districts and Mineral Resources of Nevada (Reno: Nevada Newsletter Publishing Company, 1923).
Nevada—A Guide to the Silver State (Portland, Ore.: Binfords and Mort, (1940).
Rounsevell, Nelson, Life Story of "N. R."; or, Forty Years of Rambling, Gambling, and Publishing (Panama City, Panama: Panama American Publishing Company, 1933).
Scrugham, James G., History of Nevada (Chicago: American Historical Society, 1935).
Simpson, Capt. J. H., Report of Explorations Across the Great Basin of the Territory of Utah for a Direct Wagon-Route from Camp Floyd to Genoa, in Carson Valley in 1859 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1876).
State Highway Department, Nevada Highways and Parks, November-December 1938.
U. S. Geological Survey, Professional Papers No. 42 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1905).
Wren, Thomas, History of Nevada (New York: Lewis Publishing Company, 1904).
Anderson, Mrs. Catherine, Stewart Apartments, 141 Washington Street, Reno, Nevada
Berg, J. W., Round Mountain, Nevada
Berg, Mrs. J. W, Round Mountain, Nevada
Berg, W. H., Round Mountain, Nevada
Boak, C. C., Tonopah, Nevada (letter to W.P.A., 303 South Center Street, regarding Devil's Punch Bowl)
Butler, Jake, Tonopah, Nevada
Carpenter, J. A., Mackay School of Mines, University of Nevada, Reno
Couch, B. F., Mackay School of Mines, University of Nevada, Reno
Darrough, Mrs. Laura, Round Mountain, Nevada
Gibson, Mrs. W. R., 342 East Ninth Street, Reno, Nevada (deceased)
Humphrey, Charles, Manhattan, Nevada (deceased)
Linsea, Fred, Round Mountain, Nevada
Mealman, Claud, Round Mountain, Nevada
Read, Mrs. A. H., 145 Bell Street, Reno, Nevada
Schmidtlein, G. W., Austin, Nevada
Weeks, Mrs. J. J., Manhattan, Nevada
Nevada State Highway Department, Carson City, Nevada 1941 (for elevation figures)
Sawyer, B. F. W., Nevada Mining Rushes, University of California Library, Berkeley, California.
White, Laura A., History of the Labor Struggles in Goldfield Nevada, University of Nevada Library, Reno, Nevada.
(Available at the courthouse in Tonopah, Nevada, unless otherwise noted in parentheses)
Belmont Courier, Belmont, Nevada: 1874-1880, 898-1901
Manhattan Post, Manhattan, Nevada: 1911
Mining and Scientific Press, San Francisco, California: 1907-1912
(Mackay School of Mines, Reno, Nevada)
Mt. Champion, Belmont, Nevada: 1868
Nye County News, Ione, Nevada: 1865
Reno Evening Gazette, Reno, Nevada: 1941 (Reno)
Round Mountain Nugget, Round Mountain, Nevada: 1908-1910 (Nevada Historical Library, Washoe County Building, Reno, Nevada)
Silver Bend Reporter, Belmont, Nevada: 1867-1868
Tonopah Bonanza, Tonopah, Nevada: 1901-1910
Tonopah Daily Sun, Tonopah, Nevada: 1907
Tonopah Daily Times, Tonopah, Nevada: 1927-1928
Tonopah Miner, Tonopah, Nevada: 1904-1911
Allen, James Gordon
Anderson, C. A.,
Antelope Creek, antimony,
A. 0. Smith Company,
April Fool claim,
Austin (Simpson) Summit,
B&G (Bullfrog and Goldfield) Railroad,
on Blue Spring,
on Diana's Bowl,
Barcelona City, Nevada,
Barrier, "Happy Jack,"
Bartlett, George A.,
Bartlett, Henry J.,
Battle Mountain, Nevada,
Baxter Springs, Nevada (town),
Baxter Springs (spring),
Belcher Canyon claim,
location, as Nye County seat,
on county boundary disputes,
on dances in Jefferson,
Belmont Courier (continued)
on Davenport, Nevada,
delivered by Indians,
on Old Manhattan,
on Ophir Canyon,
on Tonopah ore discovery,
Washington hand press for,
Berg, Blanch (Hunsaker),
Berg, Lucile Rae,
Berg, W. H.,
Big Four Mill,
Big Mountains. See Toiyabe Range
Big Smoky Company,
Big Smoky Mine,
Big Smoky Valley
dry lake beds,
mining and ranching
Blue Jacket mill
Blue Jacket Mine,
Blue Jacket Mining Company,
Bradshaw and Silver
Bullfrog and Goldfield (B&G)
Bunker Hill district
Butler, James L. "Jim"
as District Attorney,
post office named for, so
Canyon (Chapman) Mill,
Carpenter, J. A.,
Carson and Colorado Railroad,
Chapman (Canyon) Mill,
Columbia (Stimler), Nevada,
cooking in hot springs,
Cod, W. F.,
county boundary disputes,
county seat disputes
Goldfield and Hawthorne
Ione, Tybo, and Austin,
Ione and Belmont
Tonopah, Rhyolite, and Beatty,
Tonopah and Belmont,
Cutter/Cutting, Henry C
and Manhattan ore,
mill at Round Mountain,
Daisy Mining Company,
Daly, "Big Dan
Daniel the burro,
Darrough's Hot Springs
cooking in hot springs
H. Hawkins owned,
John Fremont and
as possible first ranching site,
Davidson, John F.,
Davis, J. R.,
Death Valley Days
Desert Power and Milling Company
Desert Queen Mine
Desert Silver mill
Devil's Punch Bowl (Diana's Bowl),
Diana's Bowl (Devil's Punch Bowl)
Dodge Brothers Construction Company,
Dunlap, R. P
East Manhattan, Nevada,
Elsa Mining Company,
Blue Jacket mill,
Silver Peak mill,
Tonopah and Goldfield Railroad,
Fisk (San Antonio ore discovery),
Fremont, John C
Gayhart, W. C.,
Gibson, Mrs. W.R.,
Gold Center, Nevada,
Gold Crown group,
Gold Hill Mining Company,
Gold Hill (Ramshorn) Mine,
electric power for
as Esmeralda county seat,
growth of town,
and Nevada population,
Goldfield Consolidated Mines
gold/quartz crystal relationship,
Gordon, L. D.,
Hannon, L. A.,
Hawarth, Lester W
Herbert and Henry (prospectors),
Higgs, H. G
High Mountains. See Toiyabe Range
Hogan, J. W
Horton, Frank, Jr.,
See also Darrough's Hot Springs Humphrey, Charlie
Humphrey, John C
Hydraulic Mining Company,
Indian Spring (San Antonio Station),
as baseball players,
fear of white man,
gold in Last Chance Canyon
and Jim Butler
school in Round Mountain,
and wild horses,
window structure and,
Industrial Workers of the World (IWW),
James, John L.,
Jett Consolidated Silver Company,
Jones, F. J.,
Kanrohat, Charles J
Kirchen, John G
Kruger, Henry, To' labor troubles
Las Vegas and Tonopah (LV&T) Railroad,
Last Chance Canyon,
Big Four lease,
Harry Hudson lease,
Hydraulic Mining Company,
Moore's Creek Mine,
A. 0. Smith Company,
Silver Peak Mine
Thomas Wilson lease,
Life Story of .R.,"
Little Grey Mine,
Lookout (Se-day-e) Mountains,
Lucky Boy Divide Company,
LV&T (Las Vegas and Tonopah) Railroad
electric power for,
growth of town,
and San Francisco earthquake,
Wolf (War Eagle) Mill
Manhattan Electric Light, Power, and Telephone Company,
Manhattan Gold Dredging Company
Manhattan Ore Reducing and Refining Company,
Manuel Mining Company,
Maud the mule,
McMurray (Gold Hill Mine),
at Round Mountain
mills/stamp mills (continued) ten-stamp mills
See also individual mills Mineral County
Miners' Union hospital,
Austin silver discovery,
copper at Monarch,
as major industry,
Tonopah Extension Mill
and war effort,
water in mines,
See also leasing; individual
mines, claims, and strikes
Mining and Financial News
Monitor Belmont Company,
mining and ranching,
Montana Grocery of Tonopah
Montana-Tonopah Development Company
Monte Carlo claim
Monte Cristo Mountains,
Moore, John A.,
Morgan, Luther "Slim,"
Mother Lode Mine,
Mt. Champion (Belmont) on Buckeye Mine
Mustang Spring, Nevada
Native Americans. See Indians Neal, Dave
Nevada Central Railroad,
Nevada Highway Department,
Nevada National Company,
Nevada Ophir Mining Company,
Nevada Ore Purchasing Company,
Nevada Porphyry Gold Mines
Nevada Wonder Company
Nevada-California Power Company
Nixon, George S.,
North/South Twin Rivers
Northumberland silver discovery,
Nye, James W.,
Nye and Ormsby Counties Bank,
Belmont as county seat,
Big Smoky Valley,
Ione as county seat,
Tonopah as county seat,
Nye County Mercantile Company,
Nye County News on Hercules Canyon
on Union district,
Oddie, Tasker L
Old Manhattan, Nevada,
"pah" in names,
Pah-re-ah (Water) Mountains,
Palisade and Eureka Railroad,
Palo Alto, Nevada,
See Reese River
Pe-er-re-ah Mountains. See Toiyabe Range
Perkins, J. C.,
Peterson Lumber Company,
Pittsburgh Silver Peak Gold Mining Company
quartz crystal/gold relationship,
radiotelephone operator permit (Lucile Berg),
in Big Smoky Valley
Blair Junction to Silver Peak
Bullfrog and Goldfield Railroad,
Las Vegas and Tonopah
Palisade and Eureka Railroad,
Silver Peak railroad,
Tonopah and Goldfield Railroad
Tonopah and Tidewater Railroad,
Ramshorn (Gold Hill) Mine,
Ravenscroft, "Snowshoe Charlie,"
Ray Mining Company,
Red Plume Mine,
Red Spring district, 'To
Red Top Mining Company,
Reese River Reveille,
Reese River Valley boundaries,
and John Simpson
mining and ranching,
Barcelona City, Nevada,
Jefferson summit toll road,
Last Chance Canyon,
Lincoln Highway, is to Monarch,
and shipping problems,
Robles (San Antonio ore discovery),
Rogers, Emma, is
Round Mountain Daisy Company,
Round Mountain Edith claim
Round Mountain Mercantile,
Round Mountain Mining Company,
Round Mountain, Nevada Athletic Club,
churches, lack of,
domestic water problems,
electric power for
growth of town
items of interest,
Miners' Union Hall
Miners' Union hospital,
Round Mountain Bank,
Round Mountain Mercantile,
Round Mountain Mining Company,
water and mining problems,
Round Mountain Nugget
on adobe houses
newspaper office as early town building,
Round Mountain Reduction Company
Rye Patch, Nevada,
Sagundi Springs (Summit Springs), to
Salisbury Wash strike,
San Antonio Mountains ore
San Antonio, Nevada,
San Antonio Station (Indian Spring),
San Antonio Valley. See Big
San Francisco earthquake
San Pedro Railroad,
Santa Fe Canyon,
Santa Fe district
Sawtooth Pass (Tonopah Pass),
Schmidtlein, G. W.,
Big Smoky Valley,
Reese River Valley,
Scott, L. R. "Little Scotty,"
Se-day-e (Lookout) Mountains,
Seylor, E. E.,
Sierra Nevada Mine,
Silver Bend, Nevada,
Silver Bend Reporter on
Silver Peak, Nevada,
Silver Point strike,
Silver Top Mine,
electric power for, so
gold rush to,
growth of town,
and Nevada population,
as Nye County seat,
stamp mills in, so
Tonopah and Goldfield (T&G) Railroad,
Tonopah and Tidewater (T&T) Railroad
Tonopah Banking Corporation,
on Belmont mining,
on freight hauling,
on 1908 strike,
on Old Manhattan,
on railroad in Big Smoky Valley
on state mining laws,
on Wisconsin Canyon claims,
Tonopah Daily Times
on Kingston gold rush,
on Mercury Mines,
on quicksilver mining,
Tonopah Extension Mill
on placer on Big Smoky Creek
on Tonopah Sickness,
Tonopah Mining Company,
Tonopah Pass (Sawtooth Pass),
Tonopah-Belmont Development Company
tree species in mountains,
Turtle Dove Mine,
Twin River Mining Company, is Twin Rivers,
Twin Rivers district,
Twin Rivers Ranch,
Upper Ralston Valley. See Monitor Valley
U.S. Geological Survey of silver production,
Valley View Mine,
Van Ness Mines,
War Eagle (Wolf) Mill,
Washington hand press
for Belmont, Nevada,
in Big Smoky Valley,
dam near Blue Jacket,
to Round Mountain,
Rye Patch wells,
See also individual creeks, springs and lakes
Water (Pah-re-ah) Mountains, II Weber, Mrs. E. S
Wells Fargo Express Company,
West End Mill,
Western Federation of Miners
White Caps strike,
White Pine County,
Wilson, Thomas "Dry Wash,"
winter weather problems,
Wolf (War Eagle) Mill,
Won-a-ho-nupe (Simpson Park) Canyon,
Wood, J. S.,
Yomba Indian Reservation,