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Downeyville Nevada

Downeyville Nevada

Downeyville Nevada Overview

Four Irish brothers (Edmond, James, Jeremiah, and Patrick Downey) discovered silver and lead ore in May 1877 and the mining camp of Downeyville located in Nye County, Nevada was established with the population growing to 200 residents the following year.

The boom didn’t last long and by 1885, most of the residents abandoned the town except for the Downey brothers. (Who later moved to Napa, California.)

Learn more about Ghost Towns in Nevada and Ghost Towns in the Southwest.

Year Established/Founded



Silver and lead


  • 1877 – Silver ore discovered by the Downey brothers
  • 1878 – S. Rosenthal from Tybo bought a lot to build a store
  • 1878 – Robert Spence from Tybo bought a lot to build a saloon
  • 1878 – Population reached 200 residents (mostly those who relocated from nearby Ellsworth)
  • March 31, 1879 – Post office opened
  • 1880 – The Downey Mining Company built a lead smelter, one of the first in the state.
  • 1885 – Most of the residents of Downeyville abandoned the town
  • October 15, 1901 – Post office closed


Downeyville Nevada Nye County

Nevada State Journal • Reno, Nevada • 08 Dec 1878, Sun • Page 2

DOWKBTVILU.–A correspondent, writing to the Belmont Courier, this to say of Downeyville, a camp of some promise in north western Nye: “Downeyville has gone sleep! or, perhaps I should say hibernating, to be sure the sound the pick and hammer and the reverberations of the blast are still heard along the hills, but the furnace idle, and of coarse, money scarce and hard to get. The mine which has produced most ore for the furnace is now so deep that no more till get hoisting works; these they have by Spring. I understand that the furnace will make another run in January. Business is, of course, dull and building almost at a still.”

Post Office

March 31, 1879 – October 15, 1901



GPS Coordinates

38° 54′ 33″N, 117° 53′ 55″W

References Used

  • Nevada Post Offices: An Illustrated History

Downeyville Nevada