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Lovelock Post Office

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1937, Louis A. Simon. Northeast corner of Main St. and Dartmouth Ave.
  • Lovelock Post Office (Bret Morgan)
  • Interior (Bret Morgan)
  • Lovelock Post Office (© Bret Morgan)

Of the many U.S. post offices erected in Nevada during the 1930s, Lovelock's brick building is one of the more modest, designed in a spare but massive geometric style commonly known as PWA Moderne, also called “starved classical” because of its stripped-down classical look. During the New Deal era the Office of the Supervising Architect of the U.S. Treasury Department designed many public buildings in this style across the country. Flanking the steps on two concrete piers are tall bronze lamps, each with a slender shaft flaring at the top and a cage holding a bowl-shaped glass. A stylized aluminum eagle stands above the door. In the lobby, over the postmaster's door, is a mural, Uncovering of the Comstock Lode (1940), by Ejnar Hansen (1884–1965), which depicts three prospectors in 1859 examining gold from a wooden sluice while another pans for gold. The mural, painted in the simplified realist style favored for public art in the 1930s, was completed under the auspices of the Treasury Department's Section of Fine Arts.

The building, which retains much of its original appearance, is an example of a small-town, single-purpose post office still located in a downtown area. The Treasury Department typically constructed such buildings in small towns and in neighborhoods of large metropolitan areas served by a main post office. Like other Nevada post offices built during the 1930s, the Lovelock building was the first and only federal building in town and represented an amicable link between the local community and the national government.

Writing Credits

Julie Nicoletta


What's Nearby


Julie Nicoletta, "Lovelock Post Office", [Lovelock, Nevada], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Nevada, Julie Nicoletta. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000, 132-133.

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