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Gold was discovered near Jarbidge in 1909, making it one of the last gold rush towns in the American West. The Jarbidge Mining District was formed and by 1910 there was a small log cabin school, freight wagon trains, stages, and the Jarbidge Commercial Club was organized.  By the end of 1911, Jarbidge had a population of 1,200 people, a Community Hall, new school, improved road, a variety of businesses, and telephone service.  The big problem was that the townsite of Jarbidge was entirely on forest service land so liquor was not permitted to be sold.  This problem was solved, much to the relief of the miners, on March 8, 1911 when the Secretary of Agriculture issued a proclamation eliminating the town of Jarbidge from the national forest. In 1917, the Elkoro Mining Company reached a rich ore body in the Long Hike Mine. It built a hundred ton mill and it, along with the ELko Prince Mining Company, mined over $570,000 worth of gold that year.  Mining continued in the Jarbidge mines until 1941 when the last company, Newmont, liquidated its subsidiary.  Total production is placed at $10 million; 355,000 ounces of gold and 1.67 million ounces of silver.  Current estimates put the town's full-time population around 20.

Jarbidge is also the location of the last stagecoach robbery in the U.S.  It happened on the night of December 5, 1916. Fred Searcy was found dead by his freight wagon with mail and $3,000 missing.  The sheriff from Elko, Joe Harris, followed a trail of blood and dog tracks for 119 feet.  The dog was found and led them to a bundle containing a black overcoat which some had seen Ben Kuhl wearing.  Kuhl was arrested, tried, and convicted.  Jarbidge not only had a "last", it also had a "first" in this case.  Kuhl had left a bloody palm print on a discarded letter at the site of the murder.  This was the first time a palm or fingerprint had ever been admitted as evidence in a court trial in the world.

The name "Jarbidge" originates from the Shoshone word "Jahabich," which means "devil." Their name for a mythical giant Indian who ate people.

Text is from the Jarbidge.org web site. I have visited Jarbidge on two occasions, the first time in July 2009, and again in July 2012. On this last visit I had a camera malfunction about halfway through that visit, so many of the photos did not turn out well. In addition, there was a lot of smoke from a forest fire across the border in Idaho. Oh well, it just gives me an excuse to return again to one of my favorite ghost towns of Nevada. To get to Jarbidge, I recommend taking the road over Bear Creek Pass, the scenery is breathtaking - see my Bear Creek Pass web page for photos.

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Good grub at reasonable prices. They also have rooms.

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Liberty Rock Park

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Headframe from the Greyrock Mining Company shaft

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The jail that held Ben Kuhl.

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Inside the jail

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Jail cell

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Bob Ranier's restored cabin

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Bob Ranier and his excellent collection of memorabilia

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Bob Ranier's restored 1924 Dodge

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Both cabins were built in 1909 and survived the big fire

Jarbidge Cemetery

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