The Dutch author arrives at Beatty on May 4
A recently transcribed book has won acclaim for spotlighting a Nye County ghost town and a character who travels back in time to 1907.
Marcel Beijer is the author who originally wrote the book in Dutch.
In “Golden Mountains”, the protagonist enters a cave in the Netherlands in 1990 and reappears in the rhyolite during the gold rush. The time traveler befriends a young prostitute until a high-profile murder threatens to disrupt their friendship and life.
Beijer will be at the Beatty Museum at 6 p.m. on May 4, about 5 miles from where part of the book takes place. Beijer traveled several times to visit the ghost town of Rhyolite and became fascinated with the rise and fall of the town. The town was booming in the early 1900s and was once home to over 8,000 people.
On August 9, 1904, a man named Frank “Shorty” Harris made the discovery that sparked one of the biggest mining rushes of the 1900s, according to Western Mining History. The city experienced one of the most spectacular booms in Western history.
At its height, Rhyolite spanned 36 blocks and city lots were given to miners to set up work camps. In 1905 he was estimated.
The desert city’s challenge was its scarce water supply. Three companies competed to supply water from various sources in the region, channeling it for miles and storing it in reservoirs.
By 1909 the town had begun to realize that the mine was no longer producing new ore and it became clear to the locals that Rhyolite would not live long.
The Montgomery Shoshone, the largest producer in the district, operated at a loss in 1910 and in 1911 they closed, devastating Rhyolite’s economy. Lower grade ore was what came out of the mines that was unprofitable to mine and many mines closed.
In 1910, Rhyolite was said to have 675 people in the town, or about 10% of the peak population. By 1916 the town was largely abandoned.
Beijer’s book brings the lost city and its people to life.
Beijer is a Dutch journalist and writer. Golden Mountains is her second novel. He is currently working on his third book, which is expected to be published in 2023.
Contact Jimmy Romo at [email protected]. To follow @jimi_writes on Twitter.