El Dorado Canyon – Nevada State Historic Marker

El Dorado Canyon NSHM is Nevada State Historical Marker number six and is located in Clark County, Nevada. The stone marker is located on the junction of State Route 165 and U.S. Highway 95 between Searchlight and Boulder and the Eastern side of the Highway.

Nevada State Historical Markers identify significant places of interest in Nevada’s history. The Nevada State Legislature started the program in 1967 to bring the state’s heritage to the public’s attention with on-site markers. Budget cuts to the program caused the program to become dormant in 2009. Many of the markers are lost of damaged.

El Dorado Canyon NSHM looks down on Lake Mojave in Clark County Nevada
El Dorado Canyon looks down on Lake Mojave in Clark County Nevada

El Dorado Canyon has a long history of mining in Nevada. Early on in its history, the canyon operated as a Colorado River Steamship port which offload mining and settlement supplies into the surrounding desert. The towns of El Dorado and Nelson are founded within the canyon hosted miners, settlers and a strong criminal element. For a time, the settlements were some of the most violent in the region.

Today, the “ghost town” of Nelson is a semipopular tourist destination. The townsite is an easy drive from Las Vegas and offers visitors the chance to see some old mining artifacts, structures and mines. However the location is clearly reconstructed appear something that it never was. For those of us who love to visit ghost towns, you may be disappointed.

Regardless, the history of the location is storied and full of adventure.

Nevada State Historic Marker Text

Toward the Colorado River from this point runs El Dorado Canyon, where occurred one of the biggest mining booms in Nevada history. Gold and silver were discovered here about 1859 and soon mines were developed. In the 1860’s, the canyon was bursting with a rowdy population of nearly 500 men, many of these said to be deserters from the Civil War.

The river was navigable at the time, making it possible to bring in food and supplies by boat.

Notorious for its feuds and shootings, the canyon was equally well known for its three largest mines, the Techatticup, Wall Street and Savage which yielded five million dollars during 40 years of operations.


Nevada State Historic Marker Map

Nevada Historic Marker Summary

NameEl Dorado Canyon
LocationClark County, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude35.8281, -114.9369


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