The steep and rugged 8,741-foot Mount Irish is the center of the Mount Irish Range. The area is dominated by pinyon-juniper and provides mule deer and desert bighorn sheep habitat. The entire Mount Irish Range is filled with cultural resources and provides a window back in time to prehistoric settlements. Today, visitors to the area can find solitude and scenic vistas on top of Mount Irish and among the canyons draining off the mountain. Well preserved petroglyphs dot the canyon walls in the Mount Irish Range as well.
The unofficial Mecca for UFO enthusiasts, Rachel reminds many outsiders of a visit to “The Twilight Zone.” After miles of lonely highway without a tree or building in sight, you come over a crest and there it is: a scatter of mobile homes spread out like buckshot across a Mars-like valley. The last stop before Groom Lake (Area 51), Rachel is a quirky outpost for “believers” and non-believers alike.
The gold rush was on in the Pahranagat Valley of Nevada when farmers in 1890 and 1891 discovered gold in the hills around the mountainous valley. The extensive mining operation led to the town’s reputation as the “Maker of Widows” as the “Delamar Dust” or silica dust inhaled by the miners led to many deaths.
Caliente was founded in 1901 on Culverwell Ranch, built on land owned by William and Charles Culverwell. The town was initially given the name of Calientes, due to the hot springs present in the area. In 1905, the Union Pacific railroad was completed, followed by the construction of the train depot in the style of Spanish mission architecture.
The Elgin Schoolhouse is a historic, single-room school in rural Nevada’s Lincoln County. The schoolhouse was used from 1922 through 1967, when its last student reached eighth grade. In 1998, the building was restored to its original appearance.
Barclay is a long way from being a ghost town, but there really isn’t many living here. Mormon farmers raised cattle here around the 1860’s. The Mormon settlement had a Post Office between 1871 and 1877 and supported about fifty people.
The first mining claims were staked in 1870. The district was organized the next year when the settlement of National City grew around the National Mine. In 1872 a furnace was built to treat silver-lead ore from the Bristol Mine, 4 miles (6.4 km) to the east. In 1878 a richer deposit was found, resulting in the construction of a stamp mill. The settlement was renamed Bristol City the same year. The stamp mill expanded in 1880 and a smelter was built, while beehive shaped stone ovens were built to provide charcoal for the smelter.
Pioche is an old town by western standards, with many of the buildings predating the turn of the 19th century. While it was Southeastern Nevada’s richest and most important mining camp, it was also notorious as the state’s most lawless community. Law enforcement was ineffective at this remote place, over 400 miles from the more populous western Nevada. Pioche was noted for frequent gunplay and in early 1870’s had more murders that Tombstone, AZ. A “Boothill Cemetery” still stands as a reminder of the early violence that accompanied the development of this frontier town.