I’ve come back to Sacramento to do more research for my Stanton Delaplane book proposal. I’ll be going to the special collections room of the California State Library. I hope, too, to make some contacts for a magazine article I’m writing. It’s deadline is July 1st and I mustn’t tarry.
The drive from Las Vegas was again spectacular. Southern Nevada is a delight of long, lonely vistas and unpopulated hills. Traffic was light to almost nonexistent and you can drive a mile off the main road and again be in the Wild West. Or, perhaps more appropriately, the unsettled frontier. I saw wild burros, their shaggy, dark brown hair contrasting vividly against the grey green of the sagebrush. And, truly, Nevada is a sagebrush sea.
I visited Sharon Artlip and Bryan Smalley in Goldfield. They figured prominently in my second Rock&Gem Magazine article (internal link). I got some leads for a future article and I found silver ore for sale at Sharon’s store on mainstream. She was charging only two dollars a rock.
Of the five or six pieces for sale, the one pictured below sounded off on my handheld metal detector. The rest did not; most probably the silver was too finely diffused through the parent rock to detect. The blue grey color was exactly the color of a badly tarnished silver spoon. Most importantly, Bryan told me this ore was from the Black Warrior Mine in the nearby Silver Peak area. It’s important to have provenance with any rock or gemstone; their pedigree or past anchors them, it gives them a personality, much like attaching a name to a person. From the time we begin to name them, we can get to know them.
Northern Nevada saw farm equipment operating: discing fields, planting, and beginning to irrigate. It made me sad my Nevada agriculture book proposal (external link) has not gathered any support. There are so many many important stories that will never be told because there is not enough of a market to sustain them. Your story may be worth telling, but it first has to make a profit. Self-publishing is a possibility but a terrible financial risk. Getting a publisher shares that risk.