Washoe City

Following the rush to Virginia City, timber became a necessity and trees were plentiful in the hills west of Washoe Valley. Additionally, water was available to power both quartz and saw mills; thus Washoe City was born in 1861, quickly growing as a commercial center for the valley. In November, it was chosen as the seat of Washoe County. By the end of the year, a wide array of businesses had opened, and by the end of the following year grew to include churches, a school, and a hospital. The Washoe Times began publication in October 1862, and in 1863 a brick courthouse and jail were completed.

By 1865, milling and lumber began to decline, and when the Virginia & Truckee Railroad successfully connected Virginia City to mills along the Carson River in 1869, Washoe City was doomed. In 1871, it lost the county seat to Reno, and by 1880 only 200 remained - a steep drop from the estimated 6000 in the mid-1860s.

Today, "Old" Washoe City remains little more than a mark on the map, today serving as a bedroom community of Reno. Not much remains of the original town, but new housing has been built, and the town has lent its name to a community called "New" Washoe City on the east side of Washoe Lake.

Click Here for the Washoe City Cemetery