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Paradise Valley

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Paradise Valley is located between the Santa Rosa Mountains to the west and the Bloody Run Hills to the east. Its fertile, flat lands, surrounded by steep mountains, form one of the most beautiful valleys in Nevada. Settlers, including Euro-Americans, Germans, Italians, Hispanic Californians, Chinese, and Basques, quickly crowded out Native Americans after 1864. The total population of about 300 residents has remained fairly stable since the late nineteenth century. The town of Paradise Valley lies in the northern part of the valley on a grid oriented to Cottonwood Creek, the main local water source. The town and surrounding valley prospered from raising cattle and sheep and growing hay, barley, and wheat. The two major intersecting streets, Main and Bridge, were laid out as broad avenues to accommodate anticipated herds of animals, as well as people and equipment traveling to mines in the Santa Rosas, although most of this traffic bypassed Paradise. Today these streets seem unnecessarily wide for the quiet town.

Trailers and prefabricated houses on the edges of town attest to new growth in the area, but a number of older buildings remain. Many were built by northern Italians who settled the area in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Their skill in stone construction has left a lasting architectural legacy. A few older adobe buildings survive, a reminder of the early pioneers of the region.

The major institutional complex in Paradise, the Paradise Valley Ranger Station, built in 1935 by the U.S. Forest Service and the Civilian Conservation Corps, stands at the south end of town. Despite its early twentieth-century character, its wood-frame vernacular buildings blend smoothly with the overall character of others in town.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Julie Nicoletta

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