Take it easy

39° 01' 34"N, 118° 15' 10"W USGS Big Kasock Mountain Quad

VISITED May 14, 2006
Our Dinner: Sausages, eggs, and 'taters
May 20, 2017
Our Breakfast
: Eggs at Jerry's in Fallon
Our Dinner: Burgers at Top Gun in Fallon

From Fallon, East on US 50 for 32 miles; right on SR 839, head south for 16.9 miles; left on local dirt road for 3.4 miles


Eagleville never really amounted to much, although it struggled along for about thirty years. Sporadic mining began in the 1880's, with a post office opening in 1889 and closing in 1913. There wasn't much ore actually shipped from the district, so you have to ask yourself, what the heck did Eaglevillians have to write about that warranted a post office there? Anyway, there was a brief resurgence of activity when things got hot and heavy at Rawhide; then, a barium deposit kept things going through the 1920's and early 1930's, but when that was over, the camp died.

A post-era overview:

It is evident that the mine has been worked at irregular intervals of time for many years. The tenor of much of the ore extracted was high enough to permit it to be shipped to smelters, although freight costs were certainly very great. Some of the lower grade ore was hauled about 6 miles south down a narrow canyon to the edge of a large playa or dry lake bed, which is about 1500 feet lower than the mine. It was milled near the edge of the lake bed, where water is obtainable from shallow wells. Some small deposits of tailings remain but the mill has long since vanished. The nearest water to this mine is 1500 feet lower, and 5 miles distance, half of the way down a tortuous desert canyon, as previously described, to the edge of a large dry lake. It is hauled to the mine in a tank mounted on a truck.
-Alfred Merrit Smith, Mining Engineer
October 18, 1931

A little more history:

Mineral in the Eagleville District, also known as the Hot Springs district, was discovered in the early seventies or before at the site of the Harry Mann mine three miles northwest of Eagleville, for the treatment of whose ore the old Monte Cristo mill, then known as the Whiting mill, was built at the edge of Alkali Flat five miles southeast of Eagleville. The mill operated in 1874 but with poor success, owing to the Mann mine ore being too basic. In these early days or of less that $90 grade could not be shipped. At about this same time mineral was also discovered at Sunnyside by Richard "Dick" Flynn who named his first discovered the Sunnyside and the next one the Great Western. Also in the early seventies the Murphy copper-lead deposits were discovered by John Murphy, pioneer resident at Alkali Flat.
Nevada Mining Review, August 22, 1934

The usual "fake news" from papers of the day:

That Churchill County is a mineral bearing region, the Eagleville mines furnish ample proof, says the Standard. With the advent of a mill or two the camp is destined to become one of the most widely known in Nevada. At present time, owing to the absence of facilities for working the ore, rock carrying values of less than twenty-five dollars per ton is classified as low grade. Of this character of rock there are thousands of tons on the dumps. Ores carrying values of ninety dollars and upwards are classed as high grade.
- Reno Evening Gazette, February 17, 1904

A locally famous miner has an accident. He later become widely known in the area as the proprietor of Frenchman's Station.

Aime Bermond, a well known miner, who owns several promising properties in the Eagleville district, was perhaps fatally injured, while at work underground last Tuesday evening by a fall of rock and dirt, several tons in extent. The unfortunate man was pinned down by the mass, which fell for the most part across his abdomen, inflicting internal injuries of the most serious nature. It was only by the merest chance that Mr. Bermond was discovered and rendered succor by two prospectors, who happened to be passing the mine a few moments after the accident and heard the injured man's call for help. Only a few days prior to the accident Mr. Bermond was offered a bond for $10,000 by responsible parties for property where he was injured, and the offer was under consideration at the time of the accident.
-Fallon Standard, March 6, 1906

Apparently Mr. Bermond survived, as his death certificate dates his death as April 16, 1926 by suicide. More news clippings of the era:

Charles W. Kinnye, a mining man of Churchill County, will leave tomorrow for Fairview, Eagleville, and other points in Churchill county after spending a few days in Reno. He says the Eagleville mines will soon be sold and that the mining camps will then begin to build and will eventually be one of the greatest camps in Nevada.
-Reno Evening Gazette, March 27, 1906

WONDER, August 8 - The old camp of Eagleville, between Fairview and Rawhide, promises to join the profit-giving ranks in a short time. Last week Mr. barton, one of the owners of the Pedro group of claims, reported to his partner, Hon. Lemuel Allen of Fallon, that he had cut a very fine streak of free milling gold ore, and that he will begin stoping and shipping the rock to the mills at Schurz.
-Reno Evening Gazette, August 9, 1909.

In the 1920's, the boom was over but the mine traded hands.

A bond and lease has been taken on the old Eagleville mining property, sixty miles southeast of Fallon, by W. S. McCracken of Richmond, Cal., and Al Blundell of Sparks, who have purchased supplies prepatory to development work. The mine is owned by Tom Kenyon and W. A. Woodruff, of Fallon, prospectors who have been owners for thirty years. Aside from gold and silver, this property is said to be rich in barium.
-Reno Evening Gazette, July 8, 1922

E.C. Hedges, fiscal agent of the K.C.& S. Mines Corporation, mining at Eagleville, in Churchill county, was up from San Francisco Sunday, conferring with Al Blundell of Sparks, president and manager of the company. It is announced that the cyanide mill, having a capacity of fifty tons daily, will be ready to go into commission within thirty days. In the meantime, little work is being done at the mine other than building ore bins and chutes in the mine, prepatory to stoping. In addition to reducing its own ores, the company will treat the output of neighboring properties; consequently, the miners of the district are looking forward to prosperous times.
-Reno Evening Gazette, March 3, 1925

New minerals were found

H.B. Fields and V.H. Carter, of Oakland, Cal., reported in Reno Wednesday that they had secured a lease and bond on the large barium deposit at Eagleville in Churchill county from A. Brundell and Ward McCracken, the owners, and that money was available for the building of a reduction plant at Oakland where the mineral will be prepared for use in the manufacture of paints and for other markets. A fleet of trucks is on its way from the Coast, it was said, to be used in transporting the mineral to Fallon where it will be put on the cars. Barium is being used largely lately, in conjunction with bentonite, for shutting off water in oil wells. A mixture of one-third barium and two-thirds bentonite is ground fine and pumped into the wells, where it swells, damming back the water and filling all the cracks and crevices. Many other used are claimed for the mineral.
-Reno Evening Gazette, September 27, 1929

The Northwester Development Company is shipping steadily from the large barite deposits at Eagleville, about seventy miles east of Fallon, to its grinding plant at Oakland, it is reported. From there, the product goes East, where it is sold for about forty dollars a ton, it is said.
-Reno Evening Gazette, November 1, 1929




It's about as exciting in Eagleville now as it was then. Very few remains, with the exception of some collapsed wooden structures, a couple of rock ruins, and an ore chute at the mine.

UPDATE: 2017. Eagleville is as exciting as ever, now perhaps less so, now that the ore bin has toppled. To add to the excitement, we stopped at some of the various mill and mine sites near the flats south of this site. While none of them is likely the site where Eagleville ore was processed once upon a time-- looking like 1960 or 1970's era workings-- someone at some time was doing something down here.

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