LEWIS

NAME: Lewis
COUNTY: Lander
ROADS: 4WD
GRID: 1
CLIMATE: Hot summer, cool winter.
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Anytime.
COMMENTS: Interesting country.
REMAINS: Much is left.

The first discoveries in Lewis Canyon were made in 1867by two prospectors. It wasn’t until 1874 that Lewis began to form. In the fall of 1876 a 10-stamp mill was built. In 1877, the Lewis townsite was platted. Because the canyon was very narrow, three different sites were developed appropriately named Lower Town, Middle Town, and Upper town. The camp was a company town of the Star Grove Mining Company. A post office opened in Lower Town in 1878. By 1880, the three sections of Lewis had a population of 216 and growth showed no signs of slowing. The Nevada Central Railroad was completed in 1889 and plans were made to build a spur line from Lewis Station, located three and a half miles away in Antelope Valley, to the mines in Lewis Canyon. The railroad spur, the Battle Mountain and Lewis Railway, was completed in April 1881 and greeted with great fanfare. By summer, Lewis had a population of 700, its own railroad and three large mills and looking forward to the future. The droves of thirsty miners led to the construction of the Lewis Brewery, one of the few in the state. A school was built in 1881 and functioned until 1900. However, all was not going well for Lewis. A major labor dispute occurred in the summer of 1881 forcing the company to cease operations. Although the labor dispute was later settled, the biggest blow to Lewis was a disastrous fire in December of 1881 that destroyed many businesses that signaled the beginning of the end of Lewis. As ghost towns go, Lewis provides an enjoyable visit.
Submitted by: HBC

 


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