Spanish miners discovered silver in the area in 1863. A small mining camp was established in the area which became Columbus Nevada in 1865. In 1866 a stamp mill was relocated from nearby Aurora. A quartz mill was opened at what was considered a prefect location, due to the proximity with adequate water.
In 1871 borax was discovered and developed by William Troop in a salt marsh. This discovery dramatically increase the towns importance and opportunities. The site later became known as the Columbus Marsh.
Columbus reached its zenith, when, in 1875 when the site boast about 1,000 people. A newspaper “The Borax Miner”, post office, and businesses where started support and profit from the population. During this time, the Borax plant ran continuously, 24 hours per day eight months of the year. There sites also supported a daily stage service with Candelaria and Fish Lake Valley.
After 1975, the Fish Lake borax planet was build by the Pacific Borax Company some 30 miles from the town. By 1880, the population collapsed to 100.
As with many such mining towns, the end came quickly when borax mining ceased in 1881.
Columbus Nevada is located in Esmerelda County, Nevada.