For a twenty-year period prior to 1900, mining in Nevada fell into a slump that cast the entire state into a bleak depression and caused the loss of a third of the population.
The picture brightened overnight following the spectacular strikes in Tonopah and, shortly afterwards, in Goldfield. Gold ore was discovered here in December 1902 by two Nevada-born prospectors, Harry Stimler and Billy Marsh. From 1904 to 1918, Goldfield boomed. The city had a railroad that connected to Las Vegas and a peak population of 20,000, making it Nevada’s largest community at the time. Between 1903 and 1940 a total of $86,765,044 in precious metals was produced here.