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Virginia City

Trip Planner USA  /  Nevada  /  Virginia City
(3.9/5 based on 1,800+ reviews for top 20 attractions)
Things to do: museums, historic sites, nightlife
Virginia City is a census-designated place (CDP) that is the county seat of Storey County, Nevada. It is part of the Reno–Sparks Metropolitan Statistical Area.Virginia City sprang up as a boomtown with the 1859 discovery of the Comstock Lode, the first major silver deposit discovery in the United States, and numerous mines were opened. At the city's peak of population in the mid-1860s, it had an estimated 25,000 residents. The mines' output declined after 1878, and the city declined. As of 2010 Census the population of Virginia City was about 855, with 4,000 living in Storey County.HistoryPeter O'Riley and Patrick McLaughlin are credited with the discovery of the Comstock Lode. Henry P.T. Comstock's name was associated with the discovery through his own machinations. According to folklore, James Fennimore, "Old Virginny Finney," christened the town when he tripped and broke a bottle of whiskey at a saloon entrance in the northern section of Gold Hill, soon to become Virginia City.In another story, the "Ophir Diggings", were named in honor of "Old Virginny" by the miners, in recognition of James Finney being "one of the first discoverers of that mining locality, and one of the most successful prospectors in that region." Finney "was the best judge of placer ground in Gold Canyon", locating the quartz footwall of the Ophir on 22 Feb. 1858, located the placers on Little Gold Hill on 28 Jan. 1859, and the placers below Ophir in 1857.
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