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Lectures on Dayton history given on Saturdays

Ruby McFarland
For the Appeal

The Historical Society of Dayton Valley is getting involved in a number of great endeavors to make Dayton’s history available to everyone in the area. We want people to be aware of our wonderful heritage. To have a staff of volunteers capable of relating our history correctly, the Society is offering docent classes 11 a.m. Saturday mornings at the Dayton Museum.

The first class covered Nevada’s first gold discoveries at the mouth of Gold Canyon, first in 1849 by Abner Blackburn and a year later, by John Orr. A tutorial by Bob Foster provided information about the scales he has on display. Those attending now know the difference between balance and spring scales. Bob did an excellent job explaining the difference of the four different scales in the display case.

We also discussed the role the Chinese played in the development of the area before it was officially named Dayton. This town would have been hard pressed without the Rose Ditch that the Chinese hand dug in 1857 to bring water to the quartz miners living in the canyon. The same ditch provided power to run some stamp mills, and later, until the 1970s, provided the town’s water supply.

The second tutorial given dealt with Dayton’s American Indians and their artifacts. Stony Tennant gave us an outstanding tutorial that lasted nearly two hours. He is knowledgeable and has spent countless hours learning about local natives who lived here before the emigrants settled this area.

There will be other people who know about Dayton’s history and displays in the museum coming to teach future classes. Anyone who is interested may come and sit in on the lectures. You don’t have to become a docent if you wish to attend. Please join us.

The Dayton Museum is at Shady Lane and Logan in Old Town Dayton. It’s also the location of the Dayton Chamber office. It is open during the week upon request and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Check out the Web site: daytonnvhistory.org. Group tours are available. Call 246-5543, 246-0462 or 246-0441.

The Historical Society of Dayton Valley meets at noon on the third Wednesday of the month at the Dayton Valley Community Center. Visitors welcome.

• Ruby McFarland is a board member of the Dayton Historical Society, a docent at the museum and has lived in Dayton since 1987.