Ish-Curtis Building Story

A  Little History

Goldfield was the largest town in Nevada in 1907, with a population close to 20,000. Surviving a major flood and several devastating fires it was known as “The Last Great Gold Camp”.

In the summer of 1907 Marvin Ish and J.B. Curtis began the construction of this building at 320 Columbia St., which was completed in the late fall of 1907. It opened as the Nevada Registration Trust Company with business offices on the second and third floors including Ish and Curtis.

The Registration Trust Company management advertised it as an up to date modern office building with 3 floors offering amenities to rival that of any in San Francisco, such as light, heat, indoor plumbing and janitorial services.

Occupying the majority of the first floor and basement they offered an escrow department, auditing of stocks, issuing stock certificates, various mining forms, two secure vaults for safety boxes, and a writing room for the ladies.

This same company occupied and managed the building until 1919 when they sold to George Wingfield. Wingfield, who moved the John S. Cook & Company Bankers to the location on the first floor. The bank later became part of the Tonopah Banking Corporation located in Tonopah NV. Escaping the fire of 1923, which burned most of Goldfield, the bank building remained open and stood as one of the few buildings left intact. The Tonopah & Goldfield Railroadoffices moved to the upper floors when their building on the corner of Ramsey and Columbia burned in the 1923 fire.

During the depression the bank was not doing so well but remained open until 1932, when the doors shut. Most of the banking fixtures were removed and sold off.  The Tonopah &Goldfield Railroad then purchased the building and moved its offices from the third floor to the first floor, remaining until late 1947.

2nd Major fire in Goldfield in 18 months

Escaping the big fire of 1923, which burned most of the buildings in Goldfield. In 1924 this brick and stone building nearly met its fate. A fire broke out in the Grocery two doors away. Most of the block between Columbia and Fifth St. from Crook St. to Ramsey was destroyed. The top floor of this building burned, exposing the third floor to the elements. Fortunately repairs began immediately and business continued as usual.

Several businesses leased the building between the years 1947-1951. During these years it housed a Café, Bar and Hotel. In 1951 the owners of the Santa Fe bought the building from the R.R. The plans were to remodel and turn it into a full-scale hotel, but it did not happen. In the late 1950’s, yet a new owner had a somewhat successful venue of a café and bar but his plans were to start a bank. Although he did develop a Banking Corporation, the building never opened again as a bank.

In the 1960’s & 70’s, several different proprietors leased the building for the odd business, but mostly it sat empty. In the late 1980s it was used as offices for employees of the new corporation renovating the Goldfield Hotel, of which was never finished. Later in the 1990s the building saw little activity and the roof failed with damaging consequences.  The hey-day of Goldfield was long over, the town never rebuilt to its original glory and the population continued to diminish to its current population of less than 300. In the years 2000-20014 the building sold to private individuals who completed some restoration.

Please respect that this is a Private Residence and is not open to the public.

The Goldfield Historical Society  | P.O. Box 393  |  Goldfield, Nevada 89013
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