May 30, 2012


Being a city boy, I have little knowledge of what the different structures on a ranch like this are — or were, in this case — used for.

It was only after looking through the photos on the Walsh Family’s Website that I learned that the taller building at the end of this line of stables (at least I think they are stables) was the slaughterhouse. Maybe I watch too many horror movies, but I expected a slaughterhouse to look more sinister.

Joe Walsh emailed me last night with some more Hess Ranch history.

The ranch remained in the Walsh Family until around 194o when it was sold to the Visbeek Family. They tried, and failed to raise dairy cows at the ranch, but evidently, dairy cows are not well suited for the Nevada Desert.

The ranch changed hands a couple more times before the Champie family who raised beef cattle here — better suited to the terrain. Joe Walsh told me, “They were great caretakers of the old structures and made sure that they were never torn down.”

I am very grateful for that. I can only imagine how much more grateful the Walsh family is!


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