Black Horse

In March 1906, prospector Tommy Watkins of Osceola found shelter under an overhanging ledge during a storm. While there, he chipped at some rock and accidentally discovered gold. Word quickly spread, and 100 (including Watkins) staked claims within a week. By April, 400 people lived in the camp of Black Horse, and businesses established included three stores and saloons, two boarding houses, a blacksmith shop, and a barbershop (though most of these were housed in tents and not permanent buildings). A school was built, and by the end of summer a post office was opened.

During Black Horse's brief boom, some of Nevada's richest ore was found. From the Mabel Mine, owned by F.C. McFall & Fred Schrott, ore ore worth over $100,000 per ton was recovered. In January 1908, that group erected a crude mill at nearby Willow Patch. The following year, owners of the San Pedro Mine built a 20-stamp mill for $55,000. In 1910, most of the mines were acquired by the Amalgamated Nevada Mines Company, but the worthwhile ore had already been removed and only $19,000 was produced over the next two years.

In 1913, ore finally ran out and Black Horse was quickly abandoned. During its short life, Black Horse's mines produced nearly $1 million. A revival occurred from 1933 until 1954, when mines were worked intermittently and produced another $108,000; a 25-ton cyanide plant was even built in 1943. Today, nothing remains of the Black Horse townsite. The Black Horse Cemetery, still used, stands above the site and small concrete foundations of the Mabel Mill remain at Willow Patch.

I Visited Black Horse
8.8.2020

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