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An Early Western Town Destroyed By The Arrival of the Railroad

Interesting map of the area around Washoe City, published by the Virginia & Truckee Railway.

Now nearly a ghost town, Washoe City was founded in 1860 as a lumbering camp for Virginia City. It was the county seat of Washoe County when it was created in 1861, as one of the original nine counties of the Nevada Territory. Within a few years, the population was about 2,500 residents.

After the Virginia and Truckee Railroad had been finished, Washoe City had lost much of its importance. In 1871, the county seat of Washoe County was moved to Reno, and in 1880, only 200 people lived in Washoe City. By the early 20th century, Washoe City was empty.