Virginia City in Storey County, Nevada — The American Mountains (Southwest)
[Located in the center of town is a monument on which there is mounted six markers commemorating historical events and people of Virginia City]
West Side - Front of Monument:
In June of 1859 in Gold Canyon, a second group of Prospectors found the outcropping of what would become one of the richest gold and silver deposits ever found. Soon to be known as “the Richest Place on Earth” the Washoe Diggings, as it was called, became the towns of Silver City and Gold Hill with populations approaching 28,000 people and was a major factor for the admission of Nevada as the 36th state in the Union. This sesquicentennial year is the 150th anniversary of the gold and silver find.
Julia C. Bulette chapter 1864 E Clampus Vitus
Second Marker on Front of Monument:
Discovered 8 June 1859
Washoe Mining Disrict
Virginia City, Nevada
This monument of ore from
every Nevada County
commemorates the one-hundredth anniversary of
the discovery of silver
Marker on South Side of Monument (See Photo #4):
Destroyed by fire in 1875, Virginia City was quickly rebuilt and became a metropolis of 25,000 people. Served
The Territorial Enterprise, with a staff of Joseph Goodman, Mark Twain, Rollin Daggett, Dan DeQuille, and C.C. Goodwin, became the most celebrated and powerful newspaper in the West.
All of the famous theatrical stars of the era appeared in John Piper’s Opera House.
Upper Marker on North Side of Monument (See Photo #8):
Monte Cristo Lode / Occidental Lode
Silver Star Mining District
A separate but similar parallel ore body, 1 ¼ miles east of the Comstock Lode and 2 ¼ miles long, located 1863 by crew of the Occidental Mine at the south end and later by the Monte Cristo Mine on north. In 1872 Sutro Tunnel crews cut a 100 ft. wide ledge 1361 feet under the St. John property and named the rich vein “Brunswick”, possibly to honor the exquisite saloon back bars and billiard tables of that era.
Several major Comstock mines extended to the ledge in 1895. Peak production years were 1896-1914 with two million dollars of ore removed.
Julia C. Bulette Chapter No.1864
E Clampus Vitus
Lower Marker on North Side of Monument
The Comstock Lode was discovered by Ethan Allen Grosh and Hosea Ballou Grosh, followed by the discovery of silver ore in the Lode by Patrick McLaughlin and Peter O’Reilly, on ground claimed by Henry T.P. Comstock and James Fennimore.
Square-set timbering invented by Phillip Deidesheimer in 1860, made possible mining large bonanza ore bodies at great depths in the Mexican, Ophir, California, Virginia, Consolidated, Best and Belcher, Savage, Gould and Curry, Hale and Norcross, Cholar and Potosi, Imperial, Yellow Jacket, Kentuck, Crown Point and Belcher Mines.
Adolph Sutro drove a 4 mile adit and over 4 miles of laterals into Mt. Davidson to drain the mines. More than one-half billion dollars were extracted.
Water was brought 30 miles from the Sierra Nevada to Virginia City.
Upper Marker on East Side (Back) of Monument (See Photo #11):
1832 – 1916
Deidesheimer chose not to patent his invention, but encouraged its free use throughout the Comstock Lode.
E Clampus Vitus
June 27, 1987
Lower Marker on Back (East Side) of Monument (See Photo #12):
Comstock production altered world monetary standards, kept the United States solvent during the Civil War, created the State of Nevada and made possible the two Senate votes necessary to pass the Thirteenth Amendement, built San Francisco, both before and after the great fire of 1906, and founded numerous industries.
William Ralston and William Sharon were the first financial geniuses of Virginia City. The Big Bonaza made John W. Mackey, James G. Fair, James G. Flood, and William O’Brien the “Silver Kings”.
George Hearst, founder of a newspaper dynasty, made a fortune in Virginia City.
William M. Stewart, eminent lawyer, drafted the first federal mining laws.
Erected 2009 by Julia C. Bullette Chapter No.1864, E Clampus Vitus.
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus, the National Historic Landmarks, and the Pony Express National Historic Trail marker series.
Location. 39° 18.622′ N, 119° 38.977′ W. Marker is in Virginia City, Nevada, in Storey County. Marker is on C Street (Nevada Route 341), on the right when Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Virginia City NV 89440, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Delta (a few steps from this marker); African Americans And The Boston Saloon (a few steps from this marker); Founders of Julia C. Bulette Chapter (within shouting distance of this marker); The Territorial Enterprise (within shouting distance of this marker); William Wright aka Dan De Quille (within shouting distance of this marker); John “Snowshoe” Thompson / James T. Fennimore (within shouting distance of this marker); Mark Twain (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of International Hotels (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Virginia City.
More about this marker. Three of the markers on this monument were dedicated by the Julia C. Bulette Chapter No. 1864 of E. Vitus Clampus - The main marker, dedicated June 27, 2009, the “Brunswick Ledge” marker, dedicated June 23, 1986, and the Philip Deidesheimer marker, dedicated June 27, 1987.
Julia Bulette was a favored “Soiled Dove” of Virginia City during the 1860’s.
Regarding Virginia City. Also see all other
Virginia City Historic District was designated as a National Historical Landmark on July 4, 1861.
Statement of Significance:
Virginia City was a prototype for frontier mining boom towns, owing its success to the 1859 discovery of Comstock Lode. This landmark includes the populated settlements of Virginia City, Gold Hill, Silver City, and Dayton, as well as open land dotted with cultural landscape and archeological features associated with mining activities. The current highway follows the historic road that connected the settlements.
Also see . . .
1. The Comstock Lode. Online Nevada encyclopedia article on the Comstock Lode. (Submitted on August 12, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.)
2. Virginia City. "In 1859, placer miners and prospectors in the western Great Basin made two remarkable strikes of gold and silver ore breaching a mountain's slope near Virginia City." (Submitted on August 13, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.)
3. History of Virginia City. U-Tube Presentation of the History Channel’s “Modern Marvels” on Silver Mining. There are 7 presentations so allow time for viewing. (Submitted on August 22, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.)
1. Additional Historical Markers in HMdb.org
The California 1849 Gold Rush, followed by the Comstock Lode of Nevada brought together several prominent businessmen whose dealings were instrumental in both California and Nevada history. There are markers located throughout Northern California and Nevada which commemorate their accomplishments and their collaboration. These include William Sharon, William Ralston, Adolph Sutro, Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens), and Leland Stanford to name just a few. Subjects include mining, railroads, banking, newspapers, government and industry.
Be sure to search for these markers within the database to learn more about these individuals
— Submitted August 12, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.
Additional keywords. Comstock Lode
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Natural Resources • Notable Events • Notable Persons • Notable Places •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 12, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 1,832 times since then and 34 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on August 12, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. 14, 15, 16. submitted on August 13, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. 17. submitted on August 26, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.