Saturday, April 05, 2008

Death Valley Trip - Shoshone, CA

2007-03-18. Following the recommendation of our good friends and museum experts in Las Vegas, we drove from Las Vegas to Shoshone, where we had lunch and visited the small museum. Shoshone is a census-designated place (CDP)** in Inyo County, California, United States. The population was 52 at the 2000 census.Named by Borax mogul Frances Marion Smith in the early 1900's, the town of Shoshone was founded by Dad Fairbanks, a Death Valley prospector and businessman who is credited with rescuing 50 souls from Death Valley. [Death Valley Chamber of Commerce]

We had lunch at the Cafe:

This theater was next door to the cafe. Wish we could have stayed for the show. 
The Shoshone Museum:

The Museum building itself is over [100] years old and was originally built in Greenwater, a Death Valley copper "boom town" that is now a ghost town. The building has been a boarding house, hospital, general store, post office, private home, rock shop, railroad stop and gas station before it became a museum. The building was moved to the Amargosa Borax Works by Pacific Coast Borax Company (near Shoshone on Hwy 127) when Greenwater folded. It served for a time as a stop on the Tonopah-Tidewater Railroad. When the railroad ceased operation, "Dad" RJ Fairbanks [founder of the village of Shoshone] moved it to Shoshone where it has served many functions. The main attraction of the museum is the skeleton of the Shoshone Mammoth, discovered by geology students from Sonoma State University in 1983. The Shoshone Mammoth is between 500,000 and 600,000 years old and is believed to be a teenage male. He is 28 feet long and weighs about 15,000 lbs. Other bones found at the site, including several mastodon bones, are also on display at the Museum. In addition to the mammoth exhibit, the Museum has displays on geology, mining, history of Shoshone & surrounding areas, and the Tonopah & Tidewater Railroad. [Pahrump Information & Welcome Center]

** A census-designated place (CDP) is a type of place or area identified by the United States Census Bureau for statistical purposes. CDPs are delineated for each decennial census as the statistical counterparts of incorporated places such as cities, towns and villages. CDPs are communities that lack separate municipal government, but which otherwise physically resemble incorporated places. CDPs are delineated to provide data for settled concentrations of population that are identifiable by name but are not legally incorporated under the laws of the state in which they are located. The boundaries of a CDP have no legal status. [Wikipedia - CDP]

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