When I “found” the Walsh (Hess) Rance on my trip to Nevada, I had no expectation of learning anything about its history. But after I posted the first shot from this ranch (which I titled “Ghost Ranch“) I received a comment from someone named Joe Walsh. He told me the ranch had been sold in 2011 to an out of state cattle corporation.
Then I received another comment from Bea (Walsh) Bible who wrote, “This big old house was built in 1910 by my grandfather, Patrick Walsh, at a cost of $15,000. The smaller white house was built in 1923 for my father, when he married.”
I was stunned! My shot of this random abandoned ranch — this “ghost ranch” had been found by the family of the original owners.
Then I got an email from another Walsh cousin. Steve Walsh sent me a copy of a photo of the Walsh Ranch House in winter (below), from the early 1900s. He also sent me a scan of an article from the August 6, 1910 edition of the Austin, Nevada Newspaper titled, “New Walsh Home Scene of Happy Party.”
In part, the article reads, “No place in the world do people enjoy themselves better than in the oases of the so called Nevada Desert. These oases are the ranch homes that are to be found in every valley in the state where water flows.
“The bright and particular oasis this week was the home of Patrick Walsh … It was the scene of a house warming.
“The big seventeen room house was ablaze with light, and belated guests were guided by the hospitable rays from a distance of twelve or fifteen miles across the desert.”
Over the next couple of weeks you’ll see more of this ranch as it looks today. And, with the cooperation of the Walsh family, you’ll learn more about its history.