Located in the Bullfrog Hills outside of Beatty, Nevada, Rhyolite is a ghost town in Nye County about 120 miles northwest of Las Vegas, near the eastern edge of Death Valley.
According to Wikipedia.com, Rhyolite “is one of the most photographed ghost towns in the West.”
The town began in early 1905 as one of several mining camps that sprang up after a prospecting discovery in the surrounding hills.
During an ensuing gold rush, thousands of gold-seekers, developers, miners and service providers flocked to the Bullfrog Mining District.
Many settled in Rhyolite, which lay in a sheltered desert basin near the region’s biggest producer, the Montgomery Shoshone Mine.
If you are in the area, be sure to check out the following:
Cook Bank Building
Goldwell Open Air Museum
A quirky fun place to visit and take photos with family and friends. Click here to view photos and read more about the Goldwell Open Air Museum.
Tom Kelly’s Bottle House
If you are looking for dining options, you have a few choices in nearby Beatty.
[irp posts=”714″ name=”Goldwell Open Air Museum”]
Transcription of the sign:
Welcome to Rhyolite
Remember the past by exploring the present!
Gold was discovered in this area in 1904. Several mining camps quickly grew around the discoveries. The town of Rhyolite was founded in 1905 and became the city of dreams; dreams of gold, prosperity, greed, and speculation.
By 1906 Rhyolite was turning into a modern town with indoor plumbing, electricity, and other luxuries. However, the dream was short lived. The mines began to fail and by 1910 people were leaving and the mines were closing.
“Today is payday at the mines and if you want to stay around, you will undoubtedly hear the bawdy music that pierces the silences of the night air, the hard laughter of the girls, and the rowdy voices of the miners.” Kate Graves
Today, most of the town has disappeared from the landscape. Some building were moved to new towns. Others fell down or were taken apart for their materials. We invite you to explore and try to imagine what this once thriving town was like in 1907.
Rhyolite at a Glance – 1907
Named for the prevailing rock in the area. Estimated population: 5,000 – 8,000 people. Boom years: 190 – 1911.
- 18 grocery stores
- 30 saloons
- 19 lodging houses
- 6 barbers
- 4 bakeries
- 15 gaming tables
- 8 doctors
- 1 railroad