Though the region around Berlin had been prospected in the 1860s, miners did not establish the Berlin Mine until 1896 and the town of Berlin until the following year. The name may have been given to the town by German prospectors, but no evidence exists to substantiate this story. The mining discoveries at Berlin predated the major finds at Tonopah and Goldfield, but Berlin never had the ore deposits required to thrive as those towns did. It always remained a mining camp, with scattered buildings and a population of less than 300. Abundant trees in the nearby mountains allowed the construction of wood-frame buildings. The Panic of 1907 hit Berlin hard. Despite a short revival in 1909–1910, the town declined. By 1911 most residents had left, abandoning numerous wood-frame, board-and-batten-sided structures, including the large mill and several smaller buildings. Berlin became a ghost town. The Nevada State Parks system acquired Berlin in 1957 to create Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park. It has preserved a portion of the old mining town as well as North America's greatest concentration of ichthyosaur fossils. The park system stabilized the remaining structures, including the mill, which remains the finest example of its kind in the state.
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