Hidden Nevada

     Places to Visit off the Beaten Path




Mizpah Hotel Lobby

Old Tonopah Cemetery


Tonopah, a small town with much to see and do, is about halfway between Reno and Las Vegas. The town has one of the only open turquoise mines in the country where visitors can head off on a tour and keep what they find. Weekly tours of the Royston Turquoise Mine are led by a guide and they begin from the beautifully-restored Mizpah Hotel.

In its heyday, Tonopah was a boom town for mining gold, silver, copper and lead. By World War II, however, only four major mining companies were operating. A huge fire in October 1942 destroyed the Tonopah Extension mill and property, and spread to a nearby hotel, causing $100,000 in damage. At the end of the war, even these companies had left. The final blow came in 1947 when the Tonopah and Goldfield Railroad folded and its rails were torn up.

A walking tour of the old cemetery in town today is sobering. Victims of murders, suicides, plagues, and the Belmont Mine Fire are buried here. There are shops and museums to visit in Tonopah, and hiking trails too. Lunch in the Mizpah Hotel is not to be missed! The old State Bank and Trust Building, better known as the Belvada, is being renovated, so watch for that restored grand dame in the near future.



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