HISTORY TOLD THROUGH ART
The “C” in the mural represents the V&T Railway
Following the discovery of rich silver and gold deposits in Virginia City, it soon became apparent that something besides freight wagons was needed to carry heavy ore from the mines to the mills along the Carson River for refining. Additionally, a better transportation system was needed to bring lumber from the Lake Tahoe region to Virginia City, where it could be used to timber the underground mines and feed the mining furnaces. To address these needs, William Sharon and his Bank of California partners incorporated the Virginia and Truckee Railroad Company in March 1868. Work began in February 1869. The V&T was completed between Carson City and Virginia City in 1869, with the railroad’s shops and main offices in Carson City. The V&T rails were extended north to connect with the transcontinental railroad at Reno in 1872. By 1874, when the Comstock mines were reaching their peak production, 36 trains a day passed through Carson City. The huge sandstone V&T engine house and roundtable dominated the northeast corner of the city for well over a century. Though the historic railway isn’t operational anymore, visitors and locals can still take a ride on the historic V&T Railway from Carson City to Virginia City or into Carson Canyon on the V&T Railway steam train rides or on a Carson Canyon Railbike Tour.