Along Highway 95 in the eastern part of Esmeralda County is a town made famous by the Earp brothers, Wyatt and Virgil, following their famous gunfight at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Arizona. Wyatt was already in Goldfield and wrote Virgil, who was living in California at the time, to move to Goldfield where “money was following like wine.” Virgil arrived in Goldfield in the spring of 1904. Soon after arriving in Goldfield, he was hired as a deputy sheriff. Wyatt was working as a pit boss in Tex Rickard’s gambling casino. On July 8, 19 05, Goldfield suffered its first major fire when a stove exploded in a millinery shop. The town was saved when the wind shifted but not before two blocks of business houses burned to the ground. Three months later, Virgil contracted pneumonia and died. Wyatt left Nevada shortly after Virgil’s death and spent many years mining in the Whipple Mountains on the California side of the Colorado River. He died on January 13, 19 29 at the age of 80.
Founded in 1902, Goldfield boasted a population of 30,000 during its boom year of 1906 when it produced $11million in gold. The town probably has the longest bar in the history of mining towns. The bar, Tex Rickard’s Northern, was so long it required 80 tenders to serve its customers. By 1912, ore production had dropped to $5 million. Those who recognized the signs began to leave and Goldfield eventually became what it is today-a ghost town. A drive south on highway 95 from Tonopah will take you to Goldfield-one of the must see towns
While there step back in history and visit the Santa Fe Saloon – Santa Fe Saloon was built. One of Goldfield’s oldest continuously-operating businesses, the saloon continues to offer four motel rooms as well as being a popular oasis in the desert. Complete with its false front, western wood sidewalks and rough floor planking, inside sports an original Brunswick Bar, dominating the Santa Fe’s back wall.