Latest books cover
September 1, 2006
Nevada mainstays mining, gambling and the Donner Party
headline three new books by local and area authors:
Jody and Ric Hornor compiled "The Golden Quest and Nevada's
Silver Heritage" (19th Century Books, $21.95 paperback) as Part II of
a planned six-book series on 19th-century California and Nevada and the
heyday of the Gold Rush and the Comstock Lode.
The Hornors, Northern California publishers, found and
reproduced nearly 140 19th-century photos from such sources as the Nevada
Historical Society and the Bancroft Library of the University of
California, Berkeley. The text comes from history books of the 1880s and
from letters, journals, diaries and newspaper stories of the era.
The "Golden" series includes "The Golden
Corridor: 19th Century Northern California from San Francisco to Lake
Tahoe." Two books on California 49 in Mother Lode country and one
each on Sacramento and San Francisco history are to follow, Jody Hornor
The Hornors started working on publishing their history
books after an acquaintance lent them some 1880s California and Nevada
They like the writing style in the historical books and
began looking for ways to supplement those texts as a way to deliver the
"flavor" of the times, as well as the information. That led to
digging through thousands of pages of journal entries from the 19th
century and tracking down photos.
"The goal was (to use text) all written in the 19th
century and photos from the 19th century," Jody Hornor said. "To
bring together things that are not currently available unless someone
wants to spend hours sitting in a library."
"The Golden Quest" captures Lake Tahoe and
Nevada mainly after the California Gold Rush of 1849 ebbed. Readers
discover El Dorado County, Calif., and Tahoe and the Sierra of the
mid-1800s, including their development, settlement and industry.
Other chapters are on Douglas County and the settlement
of Genoa; Carson City and the former Ormsby County; Virginia City and Gold
Hill; Washoe County and Reno; local relations with American Indians of the
literature's era; and the Tahoe City-Truckee communities of the 1860s and
Living in Pilot Hill -- about two miles from where gold
was discovered in California in 1848, sparking the 1849 Gold Rush -- the
Hornors don't have far to go to satisfy their interest in history.
"The property we live on has hundreds of yards of
old rock fence built by the (19th-century) Chinese," she said.
"When we walk through our property we walk through history and it's
hard to ignore it actually."