Ward is a ghost town located near Ely, Nevada, once known for its silver ore. In 1875, it was the largest town in White Pine County with a population of of over 1,000. Located at over 8,000 feet in elevation, it boomed from approximately 1876 to 1882, with a peak in 1877 due to new discoveries. The Martin White Company of San Francisco bought all the existing mines in 1875.
By 1877, the town had over 2,000 residents. During this time Wells Fargo opened, and a city hall was constructed.
While crime did happen early on, it became nearly crime-free due to the 601 Vigilantes. Reportedly, the name came from “six feet under, no trial, and one rope“. By 1878, the town began to decline due to disappearing ore deposits and the rise of Cherry Creek, another mining town. By 1885, there was only one operating business.
Basically a ghost town by this point, it would see some revival from 1906 to 1920 when the Martin White Company sold its holdings to the Nevada United Mines Company. As of the present, it still is an active mining area.
Historical Marker Inscription
Nevada State Historical Marker No. 54
The ghost town of Ward, in the foothills of the Egan Range, lies some eight miles west of here. Booming from 1876 until 1882, with a peak population of 1,500, Ward was somewhat of a lawless mining camp. Early killings did occur, but justice was meted out by the vigilante committee and the hanging rope.
A million dollars worth of silver was taken from a single chamber of the Ward mine, yet an abandoned house was used for the first school and no movement was ever started to build a church.
The town was abandoned by the late 1880s, but new discoveries and better mining methods prompted a resurgence of activity in 1906 and again in the 1960s.
N 39° 05.333, W 114° 45.173
Located on U.S. 93 in White Pine County near Ely, Nevada