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Newspaper Archive of
Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
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March 20, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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March 20, 1997
 

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28 Thursday, March 20, 1997 Pahrump Valley Gazette Rhyolite relives glory days by Patti Babcock Rhyolite, the ghost city in the desert four miles west of Beatty, came to life with hundreds visitors on Saturday and Sunday. Guests gathered to celebrate the 1997 Rhyolite Resurrection Festival held annually since 1992. Celebrants were greeted by members of the "Friends of Rhyolite" and other volunteers dressed in period costumes. The docents, two at each site, shared the history of the mining boom town and special information about their building, represented by a few ruins and strewn rubble. The costumed hosts added to the fun by acting the part of the character they Chose to represent. At the Porter Brothers Store visitors were informed the shop carried everything except liquor. There was no need for spirits as the bawdy mining town had 60 saloons. Bearded Clint Boehringer, a good Dutchman from Oregon, and his wife are just completing their fifth winter as Rhyolite caretakers. Boehringer gives tours all winter. He enjoys giving his lively renditions of the history of the Bottle House mixed with fact, myth and magic. He says, "This is one of the few places where B... S... is really appreciated. Fact: Completed in 1906, Tom Kelly used 51,000 bottles, to construct the famous house, one of the two best preserved structures in the ghost city. The Las Vegas and Tonopah passenger depot, later turned into the Rhyolite Ghost Casino is the best preserved building in the ghost city. Miss Beatty, Kimberly Hickinbotham, 16, and friend Lisa Sanders, almost 16, gave an entertaining account of the first and possibly the only woman owned business, a brothel. Dressed in rather modest red costumes the young ladies provided history of the red-light district and said this was one, if not the only, career for young women who had to make their own way in the world. A dapper Bill Morrison motored down the main street in his custom designed Sparton G. Onlookers thought he was part of the celebration. Morrison was at the Nevada Test Site in January 1951 for the first atomic test at Jackass Flats. This is the third year he has driven his distinctive automobile from Las Vegas to attend the festival. He says he always has a great time. He even likes the hot dogs. Beatty hosted a large portion of the festival including the Saturday morning "Kickoff Parade," Rhyolite exhibits, a fashion show, talent show and the Miss Rhyolite Pageant. A "Descendant Brunch" is held on Sunday. Rhyolite, the center of the Bullfrog Mining District, was founded in 1904. The population boomed as people responded to promotion, promises and the Bullfrog mining rush. Many claimed the rapidly expanding city would soon be the largest in Nevada. All things seemed possible for the city that grew in three years from a few residents in tents to a thriving metropolis of 3,500 people. By 1907, the desert city boasted piped water, electricity, a train station, a hotel, a post office, a bank, a law office, two three story concrete buildings, a school, stores and three newspapers. Sadly, the city's decline was as rapid as its rise. The 1910 census listed only 675 residents. By 1920, only 14 people lived in the city that promised so much. The "ghost city" is open to the public all year with winter visitors numbering as many as 200 on some days. It's never more exciting or more fun that during the annual "Resurrection Festival." II We wish you a big To the Silver Tappers & Breaktime & most important our loyal customers & friends for making Customer Appreciation Day party a huge success 6471 S. Homestead (Across from Sod Farm) 50 S. Emery (Behind Davis) II I P'ahrump If we run out of your favorite carpet, check back with us. Floorco verin g We have reorderd Outlet and should be re- stocking soon!!! I I