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Butte Mill/ Pizarro

Lander County

Older accounts state that this mill was built in 1866. But modern access to historical documents show that it was actually completed by the Fall of 1864. An advertisement from the Reese River Reveille on September 1st, 1864 read: "Notice. The Butte Mill in San Francisco Canon, is now in complete order; contains all the modern improvements, and will work ores on the most advantageous terms..." An article from March 3, 1865 read: "Fine Rock. Quite an excitement was created in town this morning by the arrival and display of a load of very fine rock, said to be from the Savannah. The rock was destined for the Butte Mill." In 1865, the Butte Mill worked ore from the Yankee Blade mines. By March of 1866, the Butte Mill was already in financial trouble. A man named T.H. Thompson had filed suit against the company. The court sided with Thompson and rendered verdict against the company on March 30th, 1866. On May 14th, 1866, the Butte Mill had its assets and holdings seized. They were later put up for auction at a Sheriff's Sale. There are many stone cabins in the immediate area of the Butte Mill. The legal notice for the Sheriff's Sale described the land seized from the company as follows: "That certain tract of land lying and being in San Francisco Canon, Lander County, State of Nevada, 500 feet wide by 1600 feet in length, in said canon, upon which is now constructed the Butte Quartz Mill, together with said quartz mill and machinery..... said premises commencing at point in said canon, 400 feet below said mill, thence running up said canon 1600 feet, and extending in width 250 feet on each side from the center of the canon....." The stone cabins are all located within 250 to 500 feet above the mill. They are also located substantially less than 250 feet up the hill from the center of the canyon. These distances put these cabins squarely on Butte Mill property and can only lead to one reasonable conclusion. They served as homes for those who worked at the Butte Mill. Although this mill had such a short history, it is easily at the top of my favorites list.

Post Office: None.

Last Trip/ Road Conditions: June 2022. The road back into this area is overgrown and rough. We were in a side-by-side so we didn't have much trouble. With a regular truck or SUV, it will be up to you on what you are comfortable with. In order to get close to the cabins, you will either have to crawl through a lot of thick, thorny brush in the creek bottom, or you will have to hike around the long way to the other side of the creek. Either way, plan on doing a little hiking. This is not an easy location.

Sources: U.S. Surveyor General's Office- 1875 Survey Map (Surveyors: C.C. Tracy & Barker Skinner); Reese River Reveille (Newspaper).

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