Friday, December 5, 2008

The true spirit of Christmas is celebrated in Austin

Wow, Austin Nevada has a lot of Christmas activities planned for this year. In addition to our quaint little town being decked out with Christmas decorations, on December 16th we're having a Live Nativity, Light Contest Judging, and Turkey Raffle!

What a great way to get into the true spirit of Christmas. The Live Nativity will replay the first Christmas, and following the Nativity, cookies and hot chocolate will be available along with the annual turkey raffle. The raffle is sponsored by the merchants of Austin and a lot of people have helped in donating time and money. This is what Christmas is all about! Winners of our Light Contest will also be announced.

If anyone has any questions about these activities, they can always call The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce at 775.964.2200 or visit Hope to see a lot of Christmas revelers in Austin this year!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The beautiful architecture of St. George’s Episcopal Church

St. George’s Episcopal Church is another beautiful and historic place to visit in Austin. In 1877, The Reverend Blackiston swept the congregation with his enthusiasm and eloquence at Easter Service to bring forth pledges including the building, retaining wall, pipe organ, bell and a twenty-dollar gold piece from every employee of a local mine. The organ was shipped around the Horn and by wagon from San Francisco. St. George’s was consecrated in 1878.

The intricate brickwork and impressive architecture are very impressive. Standing tall and surrounded by shade trees, this is a “must visit” for travelers of Highway 50. It’s also one of many buildings in Austin that are on the National Register of Historic Places.

Learn more about historical Austin at

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Methodist Church in Austin was built with innovative funding.

Now serving as a community center, the Methodist Church in Austin is another great example of this town’s rich history. Built in 1866, it’s one of Nevada’s oldest surviving Methodist churches, and Nevada’s first church built outside of the Comstock.

The brick edifice with Italianate bell tower was built during the pastorate of J. L. Trefren, who conceived an enterprising approach to construction financing. Trefren organized the New England & Nevada Silver Mining Company and sold stock based on the potential earnings of Austin’s silver claims. The church was built and a fine organ was purchased (possibly the first church organ in Nevada) before the scheme collapsed. Mechanical engineer Daniel P. Bell served as supervising architect for the building, which was apparently designed by a California architect, and Bell may have been responsible for the building’s innovative form. Lectures and entertainment were part of the church scene for benefit purposes. Emma Wixom attended Sunday school here. Later, as world-famous Emma Nevada, she brought her troupe to Austin and gave a benefit concert in this church.

Learn more about Austin’s history at

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Great progress on St. Augustine's Catholic Church restoration

If you are interested in historic restoration, or just love historical buildings in general, St. Augustine's Catholic Church in Austin is a must see! There is a lot of work being completed on this church, and it's great to see how all the efforts of the St. Augustine's Cultural Center are paying off.

The restoration has begun to make the news. Check out the recent story in "Preservation Magazine."

St. Augustine’s is Nevada’s oldest Catholic church building and also one of its finest. Construction of the imposing brick building overlooking Austin’s downtown was begun and largely completed in 1866. The exterior is distinguished by a bell tower with Gothic Revival and Italianate details; the interior retains many early features including grained pews, Gothic confessionals, and a decoratively painted Henry C. Kilgen organ in a Gothic case. About 1940 the parish hired an artist to paint murals for the interior, and the vibrantly colored scenes of events in the lives of Christ and St. Augustine are today the building’s artistic highlight. The basement, used as a school and as religious living quarters, preserves decorative floor painting and early wallpapers. From St. Augustine’s Parish priests such as Fr. Edward Kelly and Fr. Dominick Monteverde fanned out to establish Catholicism in eastern Nevada and Utah in the 1860s and 1870s. With Austin’s eventual decline St. Augustine's was made into a mission church, and services there ceased at the end of the twentieth century.

Learn more about Austin’s history at

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Welcome to the Austin Nevada Blog

Welcome. This blog went live on Wednesday, August 20, 2008. We're excited to share Austin Nevada information and hear about the many adventures of Highway 50 travelers. Austin is located in the middle of Nevada, along the old Pony Express Trail. Please be sure to share any photographs or stories you might have while visiting Austin and traveling "The Loneliest Road in America."