The Kit Carson Trail is a 2.5 mile path through Carson City’s historic district. It features stops at landmarks including 1800s-era Victorian-style homes, museums and churches. Nearly 50 landmarks telling the story of the capital city’s history are featured along the Kit Carson Trail.
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To pick up a printed map, download one here or stop by the Carson City Visitors Center at 716 N. Carson Street.
Kit Carson Trail Stops
Stop 1: Nevada State Museum – Former U.S. Mint (1869) 600 N. Carson St.
The Mint was created in 1863, but not put into operation until 1870, at the peak of the silver boom. More than $49 million worth of silver and gold coins bearing the famous CC mark was coined here until the mint was shut down in 1893. It became the Nevada State Museum in 1939, a must see attraction in Carson City.
Stop 2: Cavell House (1907) at 402 W. Robinson St.
This house is virtually identical to the Esser House located at 306 S. Minnesota, and it was designed by the same architect, John Conant. The Esser House, however, was built shortly before the Cavell home in 1907. The Cavell’s liked Conant’s design for the Esser’s so they purchased the plans for it. The design was considered advanced for the times, with low ceilings, gas and electric fixtures and hot water heater.
William Henry Cavell was considered the leading dentist of Carson City during the period 1896 to 1952. He was born September 11, 1869, in Carson City. His father, John Cavell, was born in England and came to the United States at the age of two; he arrived in Carson City in 1861 and was employed as a painter. Cavell’s mother’s maiden name was Grace Wren and she was also born in England.
When William Henry Cavell was seven, the family moved to Modesto, California. He was educated in the public schools there and graduated from the University of California, School of Dentistry in 1895. After his graduation, Dr. Cavell returned to Carson City and began to practice dentistry which he continued to do for fifty-six years. His office was located in the Bullion and Exchange Bank building on North Carson Street. In the early 1900’s, Dr. Cavell was successful in buying and selling mining stock during the Tonopah boom. During his professional career he built up an enviable practice and was considered one of Carson’s steadfast businessmen. He retired at the age of 84 in 1952.
Stop 3: Yerington House (1863) at 512 N. Division St.
The original central section of this house was built in 1863 by lawyer Thomas Haydon. The property was deeded to Mrs. Yerington in the fall of 1869, and the Yerington’s made numerous additions. Among its elegant features were an imported marble fireplace and a solarium with its arched windows which is reminiscent of railroad observation car.
The Yerington family held the house until 1920. During the 1950’s George B. Russell owned the home. He also owned the Springmeyer house on North Minnesota St. Russell was a native of Elko who served two terms in the Nevada State Assembly and in 1910 became Supervisor of the U.S. Census for the state. After retiring in 1960 he made this house into three apartments and occupied the central one.
Stop 4: Stewart House (1887) at 503 W. Robinson St.
This is the second house that Senator William M. Stewart owned. He had left the U.S. Senate in 1875 to practice law in California. However, in 1886, Stewart resumed his Nevada residence and purchased this home. With the help of the Southern Pacific Railroad, Stewart again won a U.S. Senate seat in 1886, and he represented Nevada for the next eighteen years. During this time Stewart left the Republican Party in 1892 and joined the local Silver Party. In 1900, he returned to the Republican Party and retired from public life at the end of his term of office. During his two terms in office, Williams Stewart took the lead in the passage of the National mining law in 1866, wrote the Fifteenth Amendment and supported reclamation legislation.
In 1915, Susanne M. Hayes purchased the property and opened Hayes Hospital. It was a three-bed hospital and Dr. Ernest Krebs operated there on Harry Mighels to remove his tonsils in 1915. The hospital advertised that it was efficient and provided up-to-date service, with experienced nurses.
In November 1916, Agnes Schulz was brought to Hayes Hospital with a sudden illness. She passed away shortly after arriving there. An autopsy was performed and it confirmed the doctor’s diagnosis of spinal meningitis as the cause of death.
The house was purchased by Robert and Elizabeth Allen in 1932. Robert A. Allen served as Nevada State engineer, state highway engineer and chairman of the Public Service Commission during his long career in state government.
Stop 5: Gov. John E. Jones House (1862) 603 W. Robinson St.
Former Gov. John E. Jones built this home and lived in it during his term as Governor from 1895-96. Its unique Stick/Eastlake ornamental design makes it one of Carson City’s unique homes.
Stop 6: Louis Prang House (1864) 611 W. Robinson St.
Louis Prang was known as the “Father of the American Christmas Card” after creating the first painting like prints for the general public. See an example of his work in the display box on the fence in front of the home.
Stop 7: Bender House (1870) at 707 W. Robinson St.
George A. Nourse built this house in 1867. Nourse was born in Kennebec County, Maine in 1822. He came to Nevada in 1863, having served as U.S. District Attorney of Minnesota from 1861 to 1863. He practiced law and was elected from Washoe County to serve as a member of the Second Constitutional Convention in 1864. He also signed the constitution after its passage in 1864. Nourse was elected as Nevada’s first attorney general in 1864 and served in that capacity until 1867. During his tenure as attorney general, he fought back attempts by California interests in San Francisco to divert water from Lake Tahoe for municipal use. When he retired from the office of attorney general he resumed his legal practice in Carson City.
The house has nine rooms and one bath. The distinctive porch was added around 1901.
David A. Bender purchased the house from B.C. Whitman in 1873. He and his brother C.T. Bender came to Nevada Territory in 1863. He settled first in Virginia City and later moved to Reno.
Two important men associated with the V&T R.R were later owners. David A. Bender, 1874 owner, was freight and passenger agent and James T. Davis, 1901, superintendent. Both men made alterations and additions to the house. In 1927, Archie Pozzi, Sr., County Commissioner, and his family became the longest occupants, retaining ownership until 1980. The spacious curved porch overlooks a broad sweep of lawn.
Stop 8: Bliss Mansion (1879) at 608 Elizabeth St.
In 1879 Duane L. Bliss, a lumber tycoon of Lake Tahoe, built his mansion on a knoll on Robinson Street in Carson City, near the homes of railroad men H.M. Yerington and Dave Bender of the V&T. When it was completed it was the largest home in Nevada.
The home was built on ground that had once been an Indian camping site and burial ground. When workmen were removing bodies before construction started it became clear that the site had also been used by whites as an early burial site.
For six months Duane Bliss gathered materials to build a stately home, using the most perfect lumber cut from the Bliss forests. He built the mansion with clear sugar pine and cedar from his own Lake Tahoe lumber mill. A great foundation of locally-quarried sandstone was started early in 1879, and by November, the house was occupied. In his diary, Bliss noted that he could acquire two million dollars through the channels of trade more easily than he could build this home.
Included in its twenty-one rooms were bathrooms, formal dining room, game room, parlor, butler’s pantry, linen rooms, nine bedrooms and a kitchen. With cathedral ceilings, the house measured 7,057 square feet. It was one of the first homes in the West to be piped for gas lighting and continued to be a center for growing Bliss operations.
Stop 9: Governor’s Mansion (1909) at 606 N. Mountain St.
Facts: Land costs $10. Completed after 30 years of debate between (1908-09).
Nevada was proclaimed a territory in 1861, and a state in 1864, but the Governor’s Mansion was not built until more than 40 years later between 1908 and 1909. Until that time, Nevada’s governors and their families found lodging where they could. State Assembly Bill 10, the “Mansion Bill,” was passed in 1907 to secure a permanent site and residence for Nevada’s First Families. The land where the mansion stands was generously offered by Mrs. T.B. Rickey for the sum of $10. Reno architect George A. Ferris designed the mansion and the construction bid was awarded at $22,700. The mansion was first occupied in July 1909 by Acting Governor Denver Dickerson and his family, and first opened to the public during an open house on New Years’ Day, 1910.
The commanding Classical Revival building features Georgian and Jeffersonian motifs, first seen in the central placement of the main entry. The elegant two-story pediment portico is supported by fluted Ionic columns, as is the second-story porch that wraps around the building’s front facade. The window moldings employ Greek revival motifs. On the interior, the first floor contains the grand entry hall, the reception room, a formal dining room, the governor’s study, luncheon room and the kitchen. The upstairs contains the private living quarters for the governor’s family. The mansion was structurally rehabilitated and redecorated from 1967 to 1968. The circular pergola and curved front stairs and metal balustrades were added in 1969. Additional buildings were added to the grounds in 1998.
Stop 10: Rickey House (1870) at 512 N. Mountain St.
The T. B. Rickey house was first built around 1870. T. B. Rickey purchased the house in 1892. He was born in Ohio, August 23, 1836, and crossed the plains to California in 1852. He got his start in mining in Amador County, but soon turned his attention to stock raising and moved a herd of cattle into Antelope Valley, Douglas County, Nevada. Rickey prospered in the cattle business by supplying meat to the miners on the Comstock. He eventually amassed huge holdings and became known as the cattle king of Nevada.
He founded a chain of banks the State Bank and Trust Company through the state with the home bank being located in Carson City. He built in Tonopah the largest building in Southern Nevada, an immense five-story brick block on the main street which had a branch of his banking firm. He owned extensive mining interests around the state and also controlled the Nevada-California Power Company.
In 1907, T.B. Rickey and his wife donated the land for the Governor’s Mansion just north of their residence. A committee examined a number of locations in and around Carson City; many for sale and some were free for the asking. Prices ranged from $500 to $4,000. The committee finally decided on the site offered by Mr. and Mrs. T.B. Rickey for the sum of $10. The story goes that Mrs. Rickey waited till her husband was out of town before offering the property for a Governor’s Mansion to the committee. When T.B. Rickey returned it was impossible for him to renegade on the donation since he received so much positive community support for his wife’s generous gift.
Stop 11: Krebs-Peterson House (1914) at 500 N. Mountain St.
Dr. Ernest T. Krebs, Sr., was a physician and surgeon who came to Carson City from Tonopah around 1906. Before building his home on Mountain Street in 1914, Dr. Krebs leased the fine Kitzmeyer home on Telegraph Street. He made his rounds with a horse and buggy and he was known as a “free thinker with a fighting spirit.”
During WWI a terrible flu epidemic hit this area and much of the United States. Dr. Krebs achieved international fame in halting the influenza epidemic in the vicinity of Carson City through the use of the sacred herbs of a local Native-American tribe. He had discovered that the herbs gave immunity to colds and infections.
The Victorian two-story home has oval stained glass windows on either side of the front door. A wide veranda extends across the parlor and the front entries are made out of red oak. Burd Lindsey, a well-known Carson City resident, was the finish carpenter on the house; he crafted the red oak stairway. Each of the three bedrooms has its own washbasin. The bathroom has a unique round water closet. The fireplace in the back parlor is composed of field stone from the ranch of Charles Schulz, Edna Carrington’s grandfather; the ranch is now the site of the prison farm.
The Krebs-Peterson home was chosen to be the boardinghouse for John Wayne in his last days as a dying gunfighter in “The Shootists.” The filming began in January 1976, and lasted a little less than a month. The front parlor was the only room used during the filming. In the final moments of the film, Lauren Bacall stood at the window and watched Wayne walk down the steps to catch the trolley on his way to the shoot-out. The exterior of the house was used extensively during the filming.
Stop 12: Robinson House (1874) at 406 North Mountain St.
This house was built in 1873 by Marshall Robinson, one of the founders of the Carson Daily Appeal. On May 16, 1865, E F. McElwain, J. Barrett, and Marshall Robinson started a Republican paper, the Carson Daily Appeal. Henry R. Mighels was hired as editor and on November 28, 1865, Mighels and Robinson purchased Barrett’s and McElwain’s interest in the paper. Robinson and Mighels held the paper until it was purchased at the end of December 1870. Robinson again became a partner of Mighels when they combined two newspapers and it became known as the Daily Appeal. The partnership lasted until January 1, 1878, when Robinson sold his interest to Mighels.
Stop 13: Sadler House (1878) at 310 N. Mountain St.
This house was built in 1878 by Edward Niles, who was a printer/publisher. Niles began publishing the Carson Times on March 18, 1880. It was a Republican paper and sold for $10 a year. The Times stopped publishing on June 11, 1881.
The former publisher took a job as special agent of the Scottish Union & National Insurance Company and the Connecticut Fire Insurance Company. Niles also worked as general ticket agent for the Virginia and Truckee Railroad.
The house was later purchased by Reinhold Sadler, who held office as Lieutenant Governor from 1896 to 1898 and as Acting and then Governor from 1896 to 1902. On May 19, 1896, he purchased the house from Professor Phillips and Edith Krall. He moved his family into the house. While he was governor the house was considered the unofficial Governor’s Mansion.
Sadler died in 1906, and the home remained in the family until 1948.
Stop 14: Crowell House (1860) at 206 N. Mountain St.
This home was built in the 1890s by Professor Hayward H. Howe, superintendent of the Carson City schools. He was principal of the Carson City High School from 1872 to 1906 and of University High School in 1906, a position he held until his death in 1910.
In 1919, Lucy Crowell, the daughter of Carson City newspaper editor Sam Davis, purchased the house for $1,500. She worked as a secretary for the Nevada Supreme court for fifty years.
Stop 15: St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church (1871) at 511 W. King St.
The St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church is a historic former church building in Carson City. It is located at 511 W. King Street, at the southeast corner of King and Thompson. It was built in 1871. It houses the Brewery Arts Center performance hall.
This building was the home of St. Teresa’s Church until the early 2000s. At that time the church moved out to a larger facility across town and deconsecrated the building. The Brewery Arts Center later bought the building.
It was originally much smaller and constructed out of wood, but it was expanded and faced with brick around 1949.
Stop 16: Stewart-Nye Residence (1860) at 108 N. Minnesota St.
This is one of Carson City’s oldest homes; it was built prior to 1862 of native sandstone for William M. Stewart. William Morris Stewart was born in New York in 1827, grew up in Ohio, attended Yale University briefly and went to California in 1850. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1852. He moved to Carson County, Utah Territory in 1860. He was a member of the Territorial council and during the session he introduced more bills than any other member, all of which were adopted.
In August 1862, the Stewarts sold the house to the Nye’s and in 1863 moved back to Virginia City, where they built on Stewart Street.
Stop 17: Edwards House (1883) at 204 N. Minnesota St.
Thomas J. Edwards built this house in 1883 on a vacant lot adjoining the residence of Trenmore Coffin. According to some erroneous accounts, Edwards constructed the house with state prison labor and was forced to resign his office as county clerk. He did resign his office as clerk in 1877, when he was appointed clerk of the United States District Court. This event took place five years before Edwards built his new home on North Minnesota. The story about the use of prison labor has with time become a very popular legend, but the evidence clearly shows there was no scandal associated with the construction of the home.
Thomas J. “Tom” Edwards was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan on November 2, 1840. He came to Nevada in 1862 and settled in the milling town of Ophir, where he was a bookkeeper for the Ophir Milling Company. He moved to Carson City shortly thereafter and was named deputy sheriff under Tim Smith. Smith was killed making an arrest and Edwards was named sheriff. He was elected county clerk in 1868 and was reelected again in 1870, 1872, 1874, and 1876. He resigned the position on March 3, 1877, when he received his appointment as deputy federal clerk. Three years later he was appointed clerk of the court, a position he would retain for fifty-one years.
Stop 18: Springmeyer House (1908) at 302 N. Minnesota St.
Herman H. Springmeyer was born in Westphalia, Germany on October 7th, 1844. He came to the United States in 1868 and settled in Carson Valley. He married Wilhelmine Heidtman at a simple ceremony in Virginia City. The couple had ten children: Louis, Charles, Leonard, George, Emma, Edna, Ann, Margaret, Edward, and Clare. He developed one of the outstanding ranches in the Carson Valley. In 1875, he was the first Nevada rancher to sell alfalfa hay commercially. H.H. Springmeyer also introduced into the valley the Holsteins as dairy cows.
He bought them from Sam Davis, the owner of the Cottonwood Ranch in Eagle Valley and long-time editor of the Carson Daily appeal. He also planted shade and orchard trees on his property. He continued to manage the ranch until 1908 when he built this house in Carson City to retire to and live. His hobby was the cultivation of beautiful flowers and especially roses; the latter have been an attraction at his home.
His son-in-law George B. Russell, who was married to his daughter Ann, took over the house after his death. Russell was a newspaperman and also served as state treasurer from 1927 until 1935. Russell kept on to the house until 1960, when he sold it to his nephew, former Governor Charles Hinton Russell and his wife Marjorie. They then lived next door to Marjorie Russell’s father Judge Clark J Guild who owned the Dr. S. L. Lee home. Charles H. Russell served as Nevada’s governor from 1951 to 1958; he was Nevada’s twentieth governor and the sixth native to occupy the office. Governor Russell was born in Lovelock on December 27th, 1903, the son of Robert James Russell and Daisy Ernst Russell. The Russell family was identified with the cattle business in the state. Charles Russell graduated from the University of Nevada in 1926 and was the second Nevada governor to have received a degree from our state university. After graduation he taught school for one term in Ruby Valley, then went to White Pine County where he worked for the copper company at Ruth. In 1929 he became editor of the Ely Record, a position he held for the next seventeen years. He was elected by the Republican Party to the Nevada State Assembly from White Pine County and served there in 1935, 1937, and 1939. Then went to the Nevada State Senate in 1943 and 1945. He was president pro tern during 1943 and 1945.
Stop 19: Lee House (1906) at 340 N. Minnesota St.
The house is known as the Dr. Simeon L. Lee home and is also called the Judge Clark J. Guild home. It is on the site of the Central School and was built with lumber from the razed school building in 1907.
The Colonial Revival style home has had only four owners. In 1865 the Carson City School District paid Albert Taylor $1,000 in gold coin for all of block 36. It was known as the Central School House block until Dr. Simeon L. Lee bought it at public auction for $42,400 in 1907. Lee, a prominent physician and surgeon in Nevada, and his wife, Lola Montez Watts, lived in the house for the remainder of their lives.
Simeon L. Lee was born in Vandalia, Illinois on September 4, 1844, and in his early twenties became a lieutenant-colonel in the 8th Illinois Infantry under the command of General Grant. After the Civil War he went to Cincinnati, Ohio and for two nonconsecutive years attended the Physio-medical Institute, an irregular school of medicine. Soon after this he went west and arrived in Carson City late in October. After he had practiced in Carson City for two years, he was lured to the then mining camp of Pioche in 1872. He remained there for five years, and then for a few months he practiced in Eureka, Nevada. He returned to Carson in 1879. He was in charge of the Carson City, Nevada Hospital from 1879 until at least 1901 and was a railroad surgeon for the Virginia and Truckee and Carson & Colorado Railroads for twenty years. He was the first president of the Nevada State Board of Health and at one time was secretary of the Board of Registration and Examination.
One incident of his practice may be related, when Dr. Lee was called upon to travel to Lake Tahoe during a winter blizzard. He had to attend a woman in labor. Dr. Lee went on snowshoes almost all the way. When he arrived at the lake, it was rough and dangerous. Despite warnings that he could not reach the opposite shore, he set out in a boat and after a harrowing experience reached his destination and saved the mother and baby.
Stop 20: Orion Clemens House (1863) at 502 N. Division St.
This house built about 1863 was the home of Nevada’s first Territorial Secretary, Orion Clemens. His brother Samuel came to Carson City as his personal secretary and later gained fame as Mark Twain; he was a frequent visitor.
Orion Clemens was born in Tennessee in 1825. Trained as a journeyman printer in Missouri, he returned to Tennessee in 1857 and in 1860 practiced law in Memphis. Orion married Mary Ellen (Mollie) Stotts on December 19, 1854. On September 14, 1855, their little daughter Jane was born. She was called Jennie, after Clemens’ mother. Clemens was appointed in 1861 as Secretary of Nevada Territory, an office described by Samuel Clemens, as “of such majesty that it concentrated in itself the duties and dignities of treasurer, comptroller, secretary of state, and acting governor in the absence.” Clemens served as Secretary of the Territory until statehood.
Stop 21: Norcross House (1906) at 412 N. Division St.
Frank Norcross built this house in 1906. Frank Herbert Norcross was born on May 11, 1869, at his parent’s ranch about four miles from Reno. He was one of three students who graduated in the first class from the University of Nevada in 1891. He received his law degree from Georgetown University in 1894. Norcross served as district attorney of Washoe County, 1895 and 1896. He married Adeline L. Morton on July 10, 1895.
He was elected to the Nevada Supreme Court in 1904 and served twelve years as a member. Retiring from the Supreme Court, he resumed his private practice of the law at Reno in January 1917. In April 1928, President Coolidge appointed him judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada. He died in San Francisco, California, on November 4, 1952.
The Norcross house was purchased in the 1920s by Supreme Court Judge John Adams Sanders. John A. Sanders was born in Virginia on October 16, 1866, and attended public school there. At the age of eighteen, he graduated from Emory and Henry College. He attended the University of Virginia Law School in 1889-1890 and was admitted to the Virginia Bar in 1890.
Stop 22: St. Peter’s Episcopal Church (1868) 314 N. Division St.
The Church at 314 North Division Street was built by the Corbett Brothers contractors for $5,500 and was completed by August of 1868. St. Peter’s was extended to the rear in 1873-74 by “master mechanic” John Parker and a team of subcontractors. Numerous smaller alterations and renovations were made to the building during the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, including an organ alcove added in 1890-91 and rear additions made in 1911. The upper part of the steeple was replaced with a replica in 1977 after a fire. St. Peter’s Episcopal Church was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.
Stop 23: St. Peter’s Episcopal Church Rectory (1862) 302 N. Division St.
St. Peter’s Church Rectory built in 1862 is located at 302 N. Division. It is a very significant historic dwelling in Carson City. Henry Blasdel, Nevada’s First Governor, used the property in 1864-1871 making it Nevada’s oldest surviving State Governor’s residence. The letter informing President Lincoln of Nevada’s ratification of the 13th Amendment to abolish Slavery was signed there. St. Peter’s Episcopal Church acquired the house in 1891, where it remains in the ownership of the Church.
Stop 24: Schulz House (1864) at 212 North Division St.
This house was built by Richard Kelly in 1874. Kelly worked as a bookkeeper for J. Rosenstock and in 1874 he went into business with T.R. Hofer and opened an office on Nevada Street. He sold the property to Mary Lewis in 1878 for $4,000. Otto T. Schulz purchased the property in 1884 for $1,600. Schulz was a native of Westerheim, Germany where he was born in 1884. He came to United States as a boy of fourteen and lived in New York, where he married Katherine Weis. The couple had three children: Margaret Kelly, Mrs. George Montrose, and Mrs. A.G. Reycraft. In 1879 he came with his family to Carson City, where he was the owner of the Stone Market. He operated the business until 1923. He died at his home on December 9th, 1933. The house would remain in the Schulz family for one hundred years.
Stop 25: Dat So La Lee Home (1905) at 331 W. Proctor St. and Cohn House (1909) at 333 W. Proctor St.
Built for famed Washoe basket weaver by her employer, Abe Cohn. (1905)
The Dat So La Lee house is a one-story cottage built around 1914. It is located to the east of Abe and Amy Cohn’s house. This was the home of Louisa Keyser, a Washoe Indian basket weaver, famed for her excellent basket work. Louisa Keyser was also known as Datsolalee, her Washoe name, which means “big around the middle or big hips.” Louisa Keyser was born in 1861 in the Woodfords-Markleeville, California area. She married Charley Keyser in her later years, and was married to him when she died on Dec. 6, 1925, in Carson City, Nevada.
Her Baskets, recognized as works of art, are found in museums throughout America, including the Smithsonian Institution, Nevada Historical Society in Reno and the Nevada State Museum in Carson City.
The construction of Abe and Amy Cohn’s home began in October of 1909. The house was built by the Carson Improvement Association, with Herbert Maxson acting as superintendent of construction. The building of the house was slowed by bad weather and it was not completed until late March 1910. Abe Cohn was a pioneer Carson City businessman and a leading Nevada authority on Native-American art. Abe Cohn was born in California but his family came to Nevada when he was only six months old. The family lived in Carson City and Alpine, California, before Abe finally settled in Carson in 1882. He opened a mercantile and clothing store. Later this establishment became the Kit Carson Curio store, dealing exclusively in Indian goods and was one of the most widely known Indian emporiums in the west.
In 1888, Abe Cohn married his first wife, Clarrise Amy. She was a native of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania and came to Nevada as a young woman. She had been previously married to August Lewis, a prominent man in the state; after his death, she married Abe Cohn. She was regarded as an authority on Indian lore and the deciphering of Indian symbols. Indian basketry was her “hobby”, as it was her husband’s. Yearly Amy visited Lake Tahoe with the basket collection and lectured at the hostelries. She had become a regular feature and thousands of guests heard her talks. Before her death in 1925 DatSoLaLee was associated with Abe Cohn and his wife Amy for the forty years. Cohn noticed her extraordinary ability in weaving. He sponsored her work and brought her to Carson City, where she lived until her death. Around 1914 Abe Cohn built a one-story cottage for Datsolalee located to the east of his home. For many years Cohn operated both the Indian curio shop in Carson City and a branch store in Tahoe City which he kept open during the summer months. He closed it in 1929 and concentrated on the local establishment. Cohn was 74 years old at the time of his death in 1934. His second wife, Margaret Cohn, sold to the State of Nevada in 1945 twenty Datsolalee baskets, ten of them going to the Nevada State Museum and the other ten to the Nevada Historical Society. The baskets are now on display at these institutions.
Stop 26: United Methodist Church (1865) at 200 N. Division St.
The construction of First United Methodist Church began in 1865 under early Nevada Methodist leader Reverend Warren Nims.
Reverend Nims labored almost single-handedly for 2 years, hauling the sandstone blocks from the State Prison. The prisoners quarried and squared the stone, and then he hauled and laid them almost single-handedly. The Gothic Revival stone building was dedicated in September 1867. By 1909 the building was enlarged and given Queen Anne and Classical Revival features. In 1929 the First Methodist congregation joined with Carson City’s Presbyterians to form the Federated Church, an arrangement that continued until 1948. Remarkably, the sanctuary is still in use.
Stop 26: Brewery Arts Center – Formerly Carson Brewing Company (1865) at 449 W. King St.
What seems to have been Nevada’s first brewery was established in Carson City by John Wagner & Company in 1860 during the rush to Virginia City. By the time Nevada achieved statehood in 1864, business was booming, and a new two-story brewery was erected on the corner of South Division and West King Streets, where it still stands. The lower floor housed the brewery operation and a bar and the upper floor served the Masonic lodge from 1864 until 1916, as their Lodge Hall.
The Carson Brewery specialized in steam beer, a bottom-fermenting brew produced without the constant cold temperatures that true lager requires. The pure, clear water used in the brewing process came from King’s Canyon Creek west of town. Hops and barley were imported from California and other outlying areas. In January, 1863, the brewery produced ninety barrels of beer, and by the end of the month, all the barrels were sold. Business was very good that year, with more than 500 barrels of beer being sold at $3 per gallon.
Stop 28: Ferris House (1869) at 311 W. 3rd St.
In 1868, George Washington Gale Ferris, Sr. purchased the residence of Mary A. and Gregory A. Sears, who subdivided a portion of early Carson City, and built this house in 1863. The Sears–Ferris House is a square, frame building measuring approximately 60 feet by 60 feet, and combines Greek, Gothic Revival and Classical Revival influences. Ferris came to Nevada with his family in 1864 as a gentleman farmer. In addition to producing typical crops, Ferris planted numerous varieties of trees and was responsible for importing large numbers of Eastern ornamental trees to Carson City including hickory, black walnut and chestnut. Many of Ferris’s imported trees still adorn the Capitol grounds.
George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr., who became the most prominent figure associated with the house, was a young boy when the family moved from their homestead in Carson Valley to this house in Carson City. Ferris was born in Galesburg, Illinois, in 1859. He graduated from military school in Oakland, California, and in 1881 graduated in engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. By 1892 young Ferris Jr. was associated with railroad and coal interests in the east, and became a bridge-builder and organizer of G. W. G. Ferris & Company in Pittsburgh. He and other American engineers had been challenged to build something “which would rival the Eiffel Tower” for the World’s Colombian Exposition of 1893.
Info from www.nps.gov/nr/travel/nevada/sea.html.
Stop 29: First Presbyterian Church (1864) at 100 N. Nevada St.
First Presbyterian Church, completed in 1864, the brick edifice is considered to be the oldest Presbyterian Church in service in Nevada.
Stop 30: Olcovich-Meyers House (1874) at 214 King St.
The house was built by Joseph1 Olcovich in 1874-1875. He was the first brother to arrive in Carson in 1860, and started the Olcovich brothers business in 1863. Bernard “Ben” Olcovich purchased the home one year later in 1876. The Olcovich brothers were prominent members of the Jewish community and owned extensive commercial property in Carson. In addition to the family store at the corner of Fourth and Carson streets, they owned the Sazarac Saloon, a drug store, a jewelry store and a Chinese washhouse in downtown Carson. As business declined during the 1890s the Olcovich brothers began to move away. Joseph moved to San Francisco, Hyman settled in Denver and Bernard went to Los Angeles. It appears that Bernard Olcovich rented the home to George Meyers from 1885 until he sold it to him around 1900.
Joseph Olcovich was twenty-nine years of age at the time the home was built. He was single, but married Hattie in 1877. They had two children, Viola and Bennie.
There were four Olcovich brothers – Joseph, Bernard, Hyman and Herman. The first Olcovich family home in Carson City was located at the corner of Fourth and Curry, just down the block from their dry goods store at the corner of Fourth and Carson. In 1877, Hyman Olcovich built a home at 412 North Curry Street.
Bernard Olcovich was thirty-six when he moved into the King Street residence in 1876. He married Carrie in 1872 and they had five children: Pauline, Jacob, Emil, Albert and Clarisse.
Stop 31: Meder House (1875) 308 N. Nevada St.
The Lou eder house is a great example of the Italianate style of architecture. It’s unique for this style to only have one story instead of two or three.
Stop 32: Abraham Curry House (1871) at 406 N. Nevada St.
Abe Curry built this house in 1871 of sandstone quarried from the Nevada State Prison. Originally the house had an octagonal cupola, which served as a skylight for the dining room of the house. There was also a front porch of five-bays in front of the projecting front pavilion which returned against the walls of the main block.
Curry, one of the founders of Carson City, was born about 1814 in New York. He came to Carson County, Utah Territory in 1858 and in 1859 located a claim on the Comstock Lode, later incorporated as a part of the Gould and Curry mine. Curry was warden and contractor for the Nevada Territorial Prison from 1862 to 1864, territorial assemblyman 1862-1863, territorial senator 1863 to 1864, Orsmby county surveyor 1866-1869, superintendent of construction of U.S. Mint at Carson City 1866-1869, and first superintendent of the mint 1869-1871. Curry’s last major local construction job was the V&T’s Carson City shops. On October 19, 1873, Curry died at the age of fifty-eight. His funeral was the largest held up to that time in Carson City and the Mint ceased operations for the day out of respect to its first superintendent. He is buried in Lone Mountain Cemetery.
Stop 33: Chartz House (1876) at 412 N. Nevada St.
This Structure, with its elaborately roofed bays and matching entry, was built in 1876 by Frank Campbell who sold it to John Elliott, a prominent lumberman. Alfred Chartz, a lawyer, although neither the builder nor the first owner, was the most noted personage associated with the house. Chartz, who as a young news reporter shot a man who impugned his editor’s honor, had been sentenced to life in the state prison. After winning a pardon he became one of Nevada’s outstanding lawyers in the field of water and mining adjudication. The Chartz family resided in the house from 1894 to 1971.
Stop 34: Brougher-Bath Mansion (1903) at 204 W. Spear St.
Wilson Brougher “struck it rich” in the Tonopah boom in 1901 and came to Carson city when he purchased the Arlington Hotel located on North Carson Street. He built his home in 1903-1904 immediately behind the hotel and the mansion is named for him.
Wilson “Wilse” Brougher was born in Pennsylvania. He came to Nevada from Iowa about 1875, when he was twenty-one years old, he worked as a woodchopper and charcoal burner. Later he became a merchant. In 1886 he was elected sheriff of Nye County on the Republican ticket, serving two terms. Then he was elected county recorder and auditor, serving in that capacity for twelve years, 1890-1902. He was elected Ormsby County state senator in 1902 and served in the 1903 and 1905 legislative sessions. At the expiration of his term he withdrew from politics and devoted his time to mining and other interests. In 1902 he bought the Arlington Hotel in Carson City and moved there. At the time of his death he was a large landholder in Pahrump Valley in southern Nye County. He was successful in drilling for water and had one of the first pumping plants in the valley. Brougher died in Oakland in May, 1922.
Construction commenced in early August 1903, when ground was broken for the foundation. This necessitated a team and scraper; and they worked steadily for several days to prepare the site. The plans called for a basement that housed the heating boilers for the home and it was necessary to excavate to quite a depth. Henry Elliott had the contract for the stonework, and considerable granite was quarried at Lake View.
In January, 1926, the Brougher Mansion was threatened by fire. Senator and Mrs. Charles s. Sprague were leasing it. A stove pipe leading from one room to another became red hot and the partition through which it passed caught fire. The blaze was quickly extinguished by the Warren Engine Company.
Ernest H. Bath purchased the mansion in 1936. He was born in Carson City on September 27, 1883, the son of Henry and Sarah Bath. He was educated in the Carson public schools and at the Carson Business College. Ernest married Dora Doty of Lionville, California on June 12, 1909; they had three daughters: Irene Frances, Martha E, and Ruth Mary. Ernest worked in merchandising in Carson City until 1904, then for a railroad company in California from 1904-1915. He returned to Carson City and got into the fuel business, where he remained until 1935, when he was appointed postmaster of Carson City.
Stop 35: Hyman Olcovich House (1876) at 412 N. Curry St.
This house was built by Hyman Olcovich in approximately 1876-1877. The Olcovich brothers came to this country from Prussia. They operated a dry goods store at the corner of Fourth and Carson Streets. Hyman was married to his wife Pauline in 1867 and was thirty-eight years old when the house was built. They had seven children: Henrietta, Jacob, Annie, Louis, Nevada, Issac and Selig. The Olcovich family was one of the many Jewish families that settled in Carson City and practiced Judaism in their homes. In 1873, a rite of circumcision was performed upon Hyman Olcovich’s baby son, Louis. He was eight days old when Rabbi Sheyer performed the ceremony at the Olcovich home.
A feast was held after the ceremony; the finest wines were served and the food for the occasion was brought from San Francisco for the celebration. The Hyman Olcovich family was also involved in journalism in Carson City. Isaac and Selig Olcovich published “The Sun,” a small semiweekly “story paper” from June 1889 through July 1891. The paper was well patronized by friends and the community. What is remarkable about this is the fact that the boys were only thirteen and ten years of age. They stopped publishing The Sun in 1891 and began printing The Weekly. The paper, measuring 5 and one-half by eight inches and containing four pages was published Monday at a The Olcovich Brothers carried such i terns as clothing, boots, shoes, men’s furnishings, carpets, and house furnishings. There were four brothers who owned and operated the store: Joseph, Hyman, Bernard and Herman.
Stop 36: Original Warren Engine Company (1863) at 201 N. Curry St.
The structure was built in 1863 of locally quarried sandstone. The Warren Engine Company No. 1 was first organized at a meeting held on June 17, 1863. Among the founding members were Augustus Lewis, John Q.A. Moore, George A. Tyrell, and Edward D. Sweeney. Some thirty charter members eager to give Carson City a real fire department met enthusiastic support from their fellow townspeople and collected $2,000 following the meeting. With the money they bought their first piece of fire equipment, a used Hunneman hand pumper originally owned by the Warren Engine co. of Boston and then by a disbanded fire company in Marysville, California.
The new Carson group named themselves after the Warrens of Boston. The Warren boys filled their depleted treasury by giving a benefit ball. Residents turned out in numbers for the cause, paying six dollars for dancing and a supper furnished by the ladies of the town, and for seeing the volunteers for the first time in full uniform.
Their first fire occurred after midnight at the Young America Saloon. An entire block was lost, and it was not an auspicious beginning. The Hunneman engine eventually proved well worth its cost, but a second fire was so long in coming that the bored firefighters put on a demonstration of its powers at the Plaza where the Capitol now stands. While the crowd watched, the pumper threw a stream of water for a distance of 209 horizontal feet through a seven-eighths inch nozzle using 100 feet of hose. Its vertical stream reached 155 feet.
A fire in a small community in the 1860s was a major event, and a one alarm or “one bell” fire was enough to bring out the whole community. A more serious conflagration got every bell in town ringing, a rather loud affair. In 1865, a block of downtown Carson was destroyed with damage estimated at $25,000. Flames also engulfed the Nevada State Prison in 1867, burning down all but the newer wing of the building. In addition to the spectacular blaze that swept through the Carson & Tahoe Lumber and Fluming Company’s wood yard south of town in 1877, some of the most noteworthy early fires were Moore & Parker’s Hall in 1875, numerous blazes in Chinatown, Doc Benton’s Livery stable fire in 1902 and the Carson Opera House fire in 1931.
With the patronage of Carson City founder Abe Curry, another fire company was organized on April 20, 1864. Curry Engine Co. No. 2 purchased the former Knickerbocker No. 5 engine from San Francisco and would soon house it in a substantial stone firehouse built by Curry, which stands today at the corner of Curry and Musser Streets.
Stop 37: Rinckel Mansion (1876) at 102 N. Curry St.
Rinckel passed away in 1879, but his widow and children continued to occupy the mansion until her death in 1933. Their daughter, Louise Rinckel, married George Blakeslee of Tonopah, and they resided in the house until 1960. After 1941, when the mansion was featured in a Paramount Pictures film, The Remarkable Andrew, the Blakeslee’s operated their home as a private museum. After Louise’s death, Ronald Machado ran the museum until 1968. Today it is one of the best remaining examples of high-style Victorian architecture in the American West.
Stop 38: E.D. Sweeney Building (1864) at 102 S. Curry St.
This is one of the earliest commercial buildings in Carson City, and one of the few brick buildings remaining from the City’s earliest years. The house was built in 1864 by builder Peter Cavanaugh, who also constructed the Nevada State Capitol building in 1870. Sweeney, who was important in establishing the town Carson City as a commercially vital town, erected the building to house shops on the ground floor and offices or apartments above. In 1885 and 1890, the building housed a saloon and offices. In 1907, the building was vacant. The building also served for a time as the Post Office.
Sweeney helped in the effort to ensure the new state capitol would be built in Carson City by donating land for Federal and State buildings. Sam Davis in his History of Nevada paid tribute to Sweeney as a “constructive, energetic and patriotic citizen, generous to a fault and had the respect and esteem of all who knew him. He was in a true sense an empire builder, and possessed an indomitable will and courage which enabled him to surmount the many obstacles in his way.
Stop 39: Bank Saloon – Formerly Jack’s Bar (1859) 408 S. Carson St.
The entrance is located on the truncated southeast corner of the building, having a single door with a glass upper plate surrounded by sidelights and a transom light. The east facade originally had large windows in each of its two bays. These have been reduced in height to about half their original size. The windows and the entryway are bordered by cast-iron pilasters. An oval medallion at the base of the columns states they were made by “U.I. Works – Reno, Nev – J. Michael – PRO.” The middle section of the columns contains arrows and rods, the capitol having an egg and dart motif above a rosette. The south facade has six openings: two single panel doors with transom lights and four double-hung, one over one, windows. The west facade has a single door and window. The interior of the structure has been little changed over the years. The back bar is not original. It was moved from another bar in Carson City in 1920. Except for two small storage rooms and two restrooms, the interior consists of a single room. An earlier intrusive partition has been removed. The building retains the original narrow tongue and groove ceiling boards. This building is an example of the Victorian functional style, popular from the 1870s to the 1990s.
Jack’s Bar is being nominated as the representative of a class of establishments that have played a vital role in the social and political atmosphere of Carson City, essentially a small rural community that enjoys the honor of being Nevada’s capitol. Used as a convenient meeting spots, with a relaxing environment to conduct business, talk politics, or discuss community life in general. The proximity of Jack’s Bar to the offices of state government (opposite the Nevada State Capitol and Legislative Building) has resulted in its playing a very particular role in political affairs. The Bar has served as the site of informal meetings and caucuses that have had an effect on the political history of the state.
Stop 40: St. Charles-Muller Hotel (1862) 302 S. Carson St.
Constructed in 1862, one of the first hotels in Carson City was also one of the state’s most elegant and became the main stage stop in Carson City. It consists of two utilitarian buildings, a two-story one on the south and a three-story one on the north, each with Italianate details. The St. Charles-Muller’s Hotel is one of the oldest remaining commercial buildings in Carson City, and the second oldest hotel in the state. The northern portion of the building, the St. Charles Hotel, was started on April Fool’s Day 1862.
The St. Charles, named after well-reputed hotels back East, was billed by its builders as a first-class hotel, “the pleasantest resort in Carson and where everything kept by the bar is the best quality.” The builders also realized the potential profits from operating a hotel oriented to members of the second Territorial Session of the Nevada legislature and arranged for the stage coaches to stop at the St. Charles first upon arrival in Carson City. Construction of the southern section began in May 1862 for Muller’s Hotel, which was consequently marketed toward working-class clientele.
Because the operators of Muller’s Hotel were French, a baker and his wife (a skilled cook who ran the restaurant), a large core of French Canadian woodcutters who were in the region to cut wood for the mines in Virginia City, lodged there. The two buildings were rehabilitated in 1992 and operated together as the St. Charles Hotel until recently.
It is actually a combination of two hotels, the old St. Charles and the Muller Hotel which adjoins it on the south. Its current name is the fifth one to adorn the hotel since it began in 1862. Starting as the St. Charles and Muller Hotel, the building has been known as the Briggs House, Golden West Hotel, Traveler’s Hotel and finally, the Pony Express.
Info from www.nps.gov/nr/travel/nevada/stc.htm.
Stop 41: Capitol Complex
Today, the capitol complex in the heart of Carson City provides a picturesque campus setting which includes the State Capitol, Legislative Building, Supreme Court, and State Library and Archives. What was once a dusty, sometimes muddy, pit in the middle of a growing frontier town, is now lush with native plant species and buildings of impressive architectural detail.
When the ambitious founders of Carson City laid out the town in 1858, they had dreams of a new territory, and then a new state to follow. Ten acres, known as the Plaza, was set aside in the belief that Carson City would be chosen as the capital of a new government in western Utah Territory.
The demands of the Civil War pushed the creation of the Nevada Territory in 1861 and the territorial legislature selected the fledgling community of Carson City as its capital.
In that first decade, the Plaza remained empty. Statehood in 1864 saw Carson City become the state capital of Nevada, but the constitutional convention made a provision that no state capitol would be built until after three legislative sessions had passed. Some people still believed that the capital would be moved to a more central location in the new state.
Fortunately, that did not happen. The building was commissioned in 1869 and built the following year. Additions, including the breezeway-connected library, and, in 1913, wings on the north and south sides, have significantly changed the building’s look.
Stop 42: Nevada State Capitol Building (1870) at 101 N. Carson St.
Facts: Architect’s fee: $250; stone: free, from State Prison quarry. (1870-71)
Now, more than 130 years later, the building is still used, standing as a testament to the foresight of Nevada’s founding fathers. Other grand Carson City buildings surround the capitol, marking the incredible growth of Nevada’s capital city. But the capitol building, constructed of native sandstone, holds the special designation of the second oldest capitol building west of the Mississippi River.
Stop 43: Hero’s Memorial Building (1921) at 198 N. Carson St.
The Carson City Public Buildings is a governmental complex of three buildings—the Heroes Memorial Building, Ormsby County Courthouse and Nevada Supreme Court—designed by architect Frederic DeLongchamps (1882-1969). DeLongchamps maintained an architectural practice in Reno from 1907 to 1965. During his career, the architect was responsible for the design of more than 500 public, commercial and residential buildings, the majority of which were constructed in his native state of Nevada. The son of French Canadian immigrants, DeLongchamps was born in Reno on June 2, 1882. He received a degree in mining engineering from the University of Nevada-Reno in 1904, and after briefly pursuing a mining career and working in the U.S. Surveyor’s Office, he moved to San Francisco in 1906 and served as an architect’s apprentice. One year later, he returned to Reno and established an architectural firm with a colleague from the Surveyor’s Office, and together they won commissions for approximately 30 buildings between 1907 and 1909. He began his solo career in 1909 when he won the design competition for the Washoe County Courthouse. Throughout his career he favored stone, brick and terra cotta as building materials, enlivening facades by using contrasting stone colors in a variety of patterns.
DeLongchamps holds the distinction of being the only person to serve as Nevada’s State Architect. He was appointed to the position on April 10, 1919, and served for two years until the post was temporarily abolished, then reappointed in 1923 and served until the position was permanently abolished in 1926. While holding this office, DeLongchamps began the development of the governmental complex in Carson City across the street from the Nevada State Capitol . The three buildings dramatically illustrate the evolution of the architect’s public architecture between the 1920s and 1930s. The twin Heroes Memorial Building (1921) and Ormsby County Courthouse (1920-1922) were designed while DeLongchamps was serving as State Architect, and are monumental, Neo-Classical buildings. Both buildings have large pediment porticos supported by four Doric columns. The Heroes Memorial Building was designed as “a fitting memorial to Nevada Soldiers who gave their lives in the service of the United States in the European War” (World War I).
A decade later, when the Supreme Court had outgrown its single-room quarters in the Capitol, DeLongchamps was awarded the commission for a new building, which he designed in a compatible but distinctly Modern style. Today the Heroes Memorial Building and Supreme Courthouse the Nevada Attorney General’s Office. The Ormsby County Courthouse housed the Carson City (formerly Ormsby County) courts until 1999 when it was acquired by the State, and it is currently being remodeled for use by the Nevada State Attorney General’s office as well. Although not listed in the National Register of Historic Places, of interest is the granite fountain in front of the Supreme Court, presented to Carson City in 1909 by the National Humane Alliance to provide fresh water for passing horses and pets. Water pours out of small bronze lions heads with open mouths into a large drinking bowl for horses, mounted four feet off the ground, and small cups are located at the base for dogs and cats.
Info from www.nps.gov/nr/travel/nevada/pub.htm.
Stop 44: Former Nevada Supreme Court & State Library (1936) at 198 N. Carson St.
See number 43 description.
Stop 45: Ormsby County Courthouse (1920s) at 100 N. Carson St.
See number 43 description.
Stop 46: Kitzmeyer Furniture (1873) at 319 N. Carson St.
The Kitzmeyer Furniture Factory is the oldest surviving Italianate-style, commercial building in Carson City. It was found to be the most intact example of Italianate-style architecture associated with the commercial development of the late 19th century Carson City.
The Daily Appeal went on to report that the owners of the kiln had turned about 600,000 bricks in 1873.
The building housed a first-story furniture and housewares showroom and a second-story furniture factory. Kitzmeyer had originally intended to build a three-story building, but ended up building only a two-story structure.
It was common for furniture makers to also make coffins as a line of “furniture,” the Kitzmeyers began an undertaking business in building and eventually expanding to Virginia City and Gardnerville.
Stop 47: Paul Laxalt Building (1891) at 401 N. Carson St.
Pressed red brick with extensive detail, wide arched windows, bays and an arcaded entrance decorated with carved sandstone, all add to the picturesque composition of the building. The Victorian-style building was designed by Mifflin E. Bell, a prominent 19th-century federal government architect who also was responsible for post offices in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Brooklyn, New York. As with many of his other structures, Bell included an unusual three-faced clock in a 106-foot tower on the Carson City building’s northwest corner.
The Clock, which was made by Joseph Barborka Company of Iowa, runs on a lengthy weight system that extends four stories and must be wound by hand every ten days.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979, the building had Carson City’s first elevator, a three-story model that was installed in 1935.
The Nevada Commission on Tourism building was built in 1877 for the Carson City Opera House until it was purchased for the purpose of building the U.S. Courthouse and Post Office.
September 29, 1888 is when the cornerstone was laid. Embedded inside the cornerstone is a silk handkerchief wrapped around a document from the first Masonic meeting describing the devastating 1875 fire that virtually destroyed Virginia City. Officiating at the ceremony was Judge Thomas P. Hawley, the first presiding U.S. District Judge.
On May 19, 1891 the structure was completed at the cost of $134,605.53. The building was occupied by the Post Office, Land Office, U.S. Courts, and the Weather Bureau. In all, sixteen rooms were assigned to various agencies. The building was topped by a 106-foot tall clock tower. The four-story, redbrick landmark was Nevada’s first federal building.
Stop 48: Foreman-Roberts House Museum (1863) 1207 N. Carson St.
The Gothic Revival Style Foreman-Roberts House was built in Old Washoe City, Utah Territory in 1863 by Solomon W. Foreman. In 1867, it was sold to James D. Roberts and in 1874 was moved to 1207 N. Carson Street in Carson City. James D. Roberts fought in the 1860 Pyramid Lake Indian War. This house was featured as the annual Carson City Christmas ornament in 2017.