You are here

Austin

-A A +A

Despite its location near the geographic center of Nevada, Austin is far from just about everything. At one time it was a booming mining town that rivaled the silver production of Virginia City. In 1862 a former Pony Express rider familiar with the area discovered silver in Pony Canyon in the mountains near the Reese River Valley; Austin was founded in the canyon shortly thereafter. Within two years, 3,000 to 4,000 people lived in the town, occupying buildings of wood, adobe, brick, and stone. Even Virginia City's International Hotel was moved to Austin in 1863 (demolished 1873). Despite Austin's large population, railroads did not serve it until the arrival of the Northern Central in 1880, a little too late to capitalize on the once-thriving economy. The town's remoteness and lack of good transportation during its peak years prevented the construction of large or elaborate edifices.

Like other mid-nineteenth-century mining towns, Austin saw its boom end in the late 1870s. Since then, economic stagnation has helped preserve many of its historic buildings. Few new structures have been built, and with a population of 420 as of 1997, Austin seems almost a ghost town. The entire town is a National Register Historic District.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Julie Nicoletta

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,