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Mina was founded as a railroad town in 1905 and was named for Ferminia Sarras, a large landowner and famed prospector known as the 'Copper Queen.'

The Nevada & California Railway, a division of Southern Pacific Railroad, had a station in the town. The railroad is long gone, but at one time a local shuttle called the "Slim Princess" allowed native Americans to ride for free on top of the railcars, and passengers and crew would shoot wild game such as jack rabbits, ducks and sage hens from the open windows. The train moved so slowly that hunters had time to retrieve their game and hop back on board.

Gee Jon and Hughie Sing were convicted of the August 27, 1921, Mina, Nevada murder of Tom Quong Kee and, as a result, Gee Jon, a 29-year-old member of the Hop Sing Tong, became the first person in the world executed by lethal gas. The execution was at the Nevada State Prison on February 8, 1924.

Mina is also the hometown of the infamous Craig E. Jackson. Jackson was well-known for his antics involving horny toad races, and his jelly roll bangs. He began the towns annual horny toad racing event, which still goes on today. Although Jackson no longer lives in Mina, his legacy lives on and his jolly spirit is felt as the horny toads race for the win.

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Bob Eddy's boat-shaped restaurant, where he sold his lobsters before the State of Nevada Wildlife shut him down.
The restaurant is still open, but the locally-raised (see Sodaville) lobsters are no longer on the menu.

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