Robert Greathouse: An American Novel (Classic Reprint)by John Franklin Swift
A more uninviting situation for the residence of human beings than the sides of Mount Davidson can scarcely be imagined. Standing in the midst of a country so destitute of moisture and fructifying soil that its very valleys are deserts, the mountain rears its black crest to a height of ten thousand feet above the
Excerpt from Robert Greathouse: An American Novel
A more uninviting situation for the residence of human beings than the sides of Mount Davidson can scarcely be imagined. Standing in the midst of a country so destitute of moisture and fructifying soil that its very valleys are deserts, the mountain rears its black crest to a height of ten thousand feet above the sea level, and so looks down in grim majesty upon a scene of Plutonian desolation that lies on every side. Yet within two thousand feet of the summit of this barren rock stands the town of Virginia City, containing a population of twenty thousand souls, amongst whom exist a class of people as familiar with the refinements and usages of that which we in modern times are in the habit of calling good society, as can be found at least in any town of the same size in America.
The secret of such a city being situated in such a place lies not upon the surface of the earth, but is hidden from view. Along the whole face of the mountain from the north to the south, extending many miles in length and passing directly under the town, lies the vein of silver ore known as the Comstock Lode.
For miles along this vein, at intervals of a few hundred yards apart, the frail sheds covering the hoisting works, the smoking chimney, and the jet of steam, the great pile of white and gray stone and debris, mark the shafts of the various companies working the mine.
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