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Spook Hill: 1940

Spook Hill: 1940

March 1940. "Old mine office. Virginia City, Nevada." Medium format negative by Arthur Frankenstein for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.


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And open for tours

We toured the house on a 2015 visit. It's very interesting. There are a lot of artifacts from the time inside, as well as pictures. In fact, Virginia City is well worth a visit.

A radio ham inside?

Very interesting the wire antenna stretched between the tree on the right and the dormer. There is the insulator which decouples the copper wire from the cotton thread attached to the tree. Probably someone inside was using a radio. Massimo IZLPE.

Mansard Family Memories

That mansard roof is so reminiscent of a house in Connecticut where I lived in college, sharing the second floor with three paying housemates, and a seemingly endless procession of couch-dwellers and hangers-on. In 1990, I didn't know how old the house was. All I could say was that it was late Victorian. Each room had a capped gas pipe, five feet off the floor, where once there was a sconce. At some point, one adventurous soul figured out how to scale the cornice and find an unlatched sash on the vacant third floor, where we found multiple layers of 19th century wallpaper.

Then came Zillow, and I learned the house dated to 1875. Presumably its mansard roof once sported this capricious arrangement of hand-cut cedar shakes. I count myself lucky to have dwelt there before the novelty board siding was covered with vinyl, even though the uninsulated balloon frame cost us $400 per winter month to heat.

On one level, I know I shouldn't find such a structure incongruous as a mining company office. But I do.

The Savage Mansion

And looking a bit better, though I suspect the Basketball Hoop/Bicycle Rim is gone.

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