Carson City, Nevada

The sun was up but the snow keeps on falling down on the first day of 2011. It was a white winter wonderland. We got ready and hurriedly went down. We have passed on the casino on the first floor and out of the Wyndham Garden to the parking lot.

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Playing snow by the car

Our car was cover in snow and while we waited for our parents, Deelow, Sam and I had some snowball fights while at the same time try to clean the windows. The snow was growing stronger as Dad and Mom came along we went inside the car. Dad turned it on and we all warmed up then drove to our favorite diner Denny’s. We ordered our favorites such as sandwich, omelet, burgers, and fries.

New Year Breakfast at Denny’s

After eating we moved on, I already have a list of the historical markers in the city. Since our goal today was to finish the list, Dad drove while I navigated. The whole city was covered in 5-inch snow but did not require any snow chain. The website was very helpful because of the markers have their addresses and the first one was by the Carson Rangers Station of Toiyabe National Forest.

Gardner’s Ranch

On this site in the period from 1870 until 1918 stood the ornate two-story home of Matthew Culbertson Gardner, Rancher, and Lumberman. The residence was headquarters for Gardner’s 300-acre ranch in meadows to the southward.

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Nevada Historical Marker

Here was located, 1870-1898, the Carson-Tahoe Lumber and fuming company’s large Lumberyard. During the 1870s and 1880s Gardner logged south of Lake Tahoe for the company and built the only standard gauge logging railroad in the Tahoe Basin. He maintained his home here. Gardner died in 1908, the residence was destroyed by a fire August 20, 1918. Many of the old trees on the ground once shaded the Gardner Family.

We followed the map and headed to our next destination, I wouldn’t mind walking around to reach the markers but because of the deepness of the snow it was risky when you don’t see where you were going. I was grateful that my family went along with it. Following all the sites and so here is the next ones

Historic Flume and Lumberyard

Approximately one-half mile south of this point and west of the present highway lay the immense lumberyard of the Carson-Tahoe Lumber and Fluming Company, the greatest of the Comstock lumbering combines operating in the Lake Tahoe Basin during 1870-1898.

The old Lumberyard

Situated at the terminus of the 12 miles “V” flume from Spooners Summit in the Sierra Nevada, the lumberyard was approximately one mile long and one-half mile wide. A spur line of the Virginia and Truckee Railroad served the lumberyard. The spur ran adjacent to this site and carried rough lumber to the company’s planing mill and box factory, one-half mile north on Stewart Street. It also carried timbers and cordwood to the Carson Yards to be hauled to the Comstock mines and mills.

Nevada State Children’s Home

The Nevada Orphan’s Asylum, a privately funded institution, was opened in Virginia City May 1867 by Sister Frederica McGrath and two other nuns of the Sisters of Charity. By 1870, most of its functions were taken over by the Nevada Orphans’ Home at Carson City. Authorized in 1869 by the legislature and constructed on this site. The first child was admitted on October 28, 1870.

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Nevada State Children’s Home

In 1903, The First Building gave way to a larger one, constructed of Sandstone from the State Prison Quarry east of Carson City. This edifice, a Carson City landmark, served until 1963 as Nevada’s home for dependent and neglected children. In the 1940’s, its name was changed to the Nevada State Children’s Home. During the 1950’s, the name “Sunny Acres” was also used. The stone building was in turn replaced in 1963. In accordance with the modern concept of family-sized groups housed in cottages.

The Warm Springs Hotel

Built about 1860, the Warm Springs Hotel was used by Nevada’s first territorial legislature as a meeting place in 1861. The structure was built from hand hewn sandstone took from a nearby quarry. An imposing edifice in its day. The building typified the enterprise of the owner, Abe Curry. He and his business partners surveyed the site of Carson City; were farsighted enough to leave space for a State Capitol Building while the area was a part of Utah and attracted incoming merchants to their tiny community.

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Warm Spring’s Hotel

In 1862, the hotel was leased by Nevada Territory and used for holding prisoners. Two years later, the property was purchased and became the State Prison. During 1867, the hotel was destroyed by fire. Present prison facilities occupy the ground where the hotel was situated.

Driving around the city we finally reached the area where we started and that was by the capitol. Here is a long description of a woman who shaped Nevada.

Dr. Genevra Genevieve Burke “Keep Smiling”

Dr. Burke was a remarkable citizen of Carson City, an accomplished community leader in her profession, in women’s business and city activities. Her accomplishments serve as a good example for the community. Dr. Burke was the granddaughter of Henry Clay Powers, who arrived in Carson City in the late 1850s and later, in partnership with John Little and others, operated a mule train packing, freighting and logging company hauling supplies and timber to the Virginia City mines. He married Miss Isabeli Wardrobe Gray of the John Gray and Wardrobe family, residents of the area since 1863, in Carson City on December 24, 1867. Their first child, Elizabeth Nevada Powers, was born in Carson City on December 14, 1869.

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Marker for Dr. Burke

Dr. Burke was born on November 12, 1906 in Albion, Idaho to John Thomas (Tom) and Isabel Alvira Powers Burke. Tom Burke was a civil engineer in the early development of water projects throughout the West and an educator at the University of Idaho. Dr. Burke received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Education from the University of Arizona and a Master’s Degree in Business (MBA) from the University of Southern California in 1929. She taught high school business courses in Boulder City, Nevada, Prescott and Florence, Arizona and later worked in the State of Nevada’s Civil Defense programs. Following chiropractic treatment for an accident, she elected to become a chiropractor and graduated from the Palmer School of Chiropractic Medicine in Davenport, Iowa.

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Site of the marker

She returned in Carson City on the Virginia Truckee Railroad and opened her first office off the lobby of the St. Charles Hotel, later moving her office to 113 North Harbin Street, providing chiropractic services for over 41 years, until her death at the age of 83 in 1989. As a community leader, she was President of the Carson City Business and Professional Women’s Club, Director of Western Nevada District of Business and Professional Women, Past President of the Soroptimist Club, the Carson City Toast Mistress Club, the American Association of University Women, and was named Professional Women’s Club “Woman of the Year” in 1968 and Carson City “Woman of the Year” by the Carson City Chamber of Commerce in 1969. She was a member of the First Methodist Church of Carson City and the Leisure Hour Club.

Next on the list was in the neighborhood, where it’s full of churches and historic houses. At this area, Dad parked and he waited while Mom went down for a bit but I mostly did all the walking to the sites. Most of the markers were nearby so it wasn’t that hard and also it was a nice experience to walk around the snow and get a little wet.

First Presbyterian Church

The roots of this church reach deep into Nevada’s sagebrush soil and are older than the state itself. Portions of the edifice date to early 1864, making it the oldest church building still in service in Nevada.

Many key figures in the State’s history are numbered on its rolls. Not the least of these was Orion Clemens, Secretary of Nevada Territory. 1861-1864. His brother Sam Clemens (Mark Twain) donated the proceeds of the Third Session (1864) of his famed “Third House” toward the church’s construction.

Olcovich-Meyers House

The Olcovich–Meyers House, at 214 W. King St. in Carson City, Nevada, is a historic, well-preserved house that was built during 1874-75 with Late Victorian architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993. The listing included two contributing buildings.

It is reportedly one of few surviving houses in Carson City that have “Gothic-influenced” architecture. The house also shows Italianate and Eastlake stylistic elements. It was built by Joseph Olcovich for his brother Bernard. Victorian details were probably added in the late 1880s, by George Meyers, who then owned it.

Stewart-Nye Residence

This house was built about 1860 of local sandstone for William Morris Stewart who lived here until 1862. He sold it to the territorial Governor of Nevada, James W. Nye. The two men served as Nevada’s First United States senators after the territory achieved statehood. Stewart, serving from 1864 to 1875 and again from 1887 to 1905. Nye served from 1864 to 1873. Both men were originally New Yorkers.

Subsequently, the house became the home of Chief Justice of the Nevada Supreme Court, George F. Talbot. In 1917 he sold the house and block to the Roman Catholic Bishop. Since that time it has served as the rectory of the Roman Catholic Church, St. Teresa of Avila, located across King Street.

Methodist Church of Carson City

Dedicated in 1867, this church serves a congregation that was organized in 1859 and is often referred to as the “Cradle of Nevada Methodism”. Like many other buildings in Carson City, the stone used in its construction was quarried at the nearby State Prison. Reverend Warren Nims (Pastor 1863-1866) was responsible for much of the original construction. Altered extensively over the years, the structure with its octagonal porch posts and pointed-arch windows is still an excellent local example of the Gothic Revival style.

St. Peter’s Episcopal Church

Construction on this graceful reminder of the churches of old New England began in October 1867. Work was completed in July 1868 at a cost of $5,500.

The church was first occupied by its congregation on Sunday. August 9, 1868, with the Reverend George B. Allen officiating. Beginning in December 1873, additional construction work brought the edifice to substantially its resent form and appearance.

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Selfie with the church

On April 18, 1874, a public rental for 51 of the 56 new pews installed in the enlarged chancel was held.  The remaining five pews were reserved for Nevada’s Orphan’s Home children (now the Northern Nevada Children’s Home in Carson City).

The statewide slump is mining activities, 1878-1900, and the economic crisis which ensued played havoc with most of Nevada’s churches, including St. Peter’s. However, the period of stress was weathered, and St. Peter’s has grown steadily ever since. It continues to play an imporatnat role in Carson City’s religious and secular life. 

Orion Clemens Home

Orion Clemens, Secretary to Territorial Governor James W. Nye, lived in this house with his wife, “Mollie,” from 1864 to 1866. His brother, Samuel a reporter for the Territorial Enterprise, who later became famous as “Mark Twain,” stayed here periodically in 1864.

Bliss Mansion

It was built by Duane L. Bliss a lumber and railroad magnate in 1879. In its time the most modern and larges home in Nevada. Entirely constructed of clear lumber and square nails. First home in Nevada entirely piped for gas lighting.

Dr. E.T. Krebbs E.C. Peterson House (filming location of “The Shootist”)

The “Shootist House” built-in 1914 was the boarding house operated by landlady Lauren Bacall and last stop for aging gunfighter John Wayne’s last movie. It also starred James Stewart and Ron Howard. Here is a brief description:

The Shootist

“J.B. Books (John Wayne, in his final film role) is an aging gunfighter diagnosed with cancer who comes to Nevada at the turn of the 20th century. Renting a room from widowed Bond Rogers (Lauren Bacall) and her son Gillom (Ron Howard), Books is confronted by several people of questionable motives, including a man seeking to avenge his brother’s death and a few who are looking to profit from Books’ notoriety. Not wanting to die a quiet, painful death, Books devises a plan to go out with a bang.”



Hannah Keziah Clapp “T.B. Rickey” House

Hannah Keziah Clapp (1824 – October 8, 1908) was a teacher, activist and feminist in Nevada, US. She organized the state’s first private school and was co-founder of the state’s first kindergarten. She served as principal of the Lansing Female Seminary; taught at Michigan Female College; and was the first instructor and librarian at the University of Nevada, Reno. Clapp co-founded Reno’s 20th Century Club, which in 1983 was added to the National Register of Historic Places listings in Washoe County, Nevada. She was born in Albany, New York in 1824, and arrived in Carson City in 1860, where she established the Sierra Seminary. A suffragette, Clapp also worked for women’s right to vote. Clapp was a charter member of the Nevada Historical Society. She died in Palo Alto, California in 1908.

Louis Prang House

Louis Prang House, 1864: Louis Prang (1824-1909) is known as the father of the American Christmas card. Louis Prang immigrated from Germany in 1850 as a well trained lithographer, and settled in Boston where he became a wood engraver. He promoted greeting cards in American in 1856 and began producing high-quality Christmas cards in 1875, some costing the very high price at the time of $1.00 each. By 1881,, Prang was producing more than five million Christmas cards a year. His painstaking craftsmanship made his cards collector’s favorites today.

Bender House

The house was built in 1867 by George Nourse, Nevada’s first Attorney General. It gets its name from David Bender, a Virginia & Truckee Railroad agent, who moved here in 1875. It was later owned by J.T. Davis, who was not only the superintendant of the V&T, but also served a term as Carson City’s mayor. Davis was the one who added the distinctive front porch and bay windows.

Henry Marvin Yerington House

H.M. Yerington (1828-1910)  Henry Marvin Yerington was born in Canada in 1828 and came to Nevada in 1863. He was actively involved in mining, lumbering, railroads, and land development in Nevada and California until his death in 1910. He is reported to have been president of sixteen different companies at one time and actively involved in forty. Yerington was a leader in the Republican Party in Nevada and very influential in state politics. He is probably best known as the general superintendent and vice-president of the Virginia and Truckee Railroad and as a construction superintendent and president of the Carson and Colorado Railroad. 

The city of Yerington is named for Henry Marvin Yerington; prominent Nevada businessman and railroad builder.

In the end, it was a nice family bonding to experience another New Year with the people whom you love and care for. The patience they have to allow you to pursue what you want. We left after walking around the neighborhood Dad drove all of us out of the city and to the freeway. On the way home the traffic on the freeway was horrible due to the snowstorm. The first adventure in the city of Carson and the state of Nevada was memorable and white as snow.

Here are the links for more information:

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Say Cheez!

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