Courthouse celebrates centennial
Today, the Douglas County Courthouse in Minden officially turns 100.
The child of political wrangling designed to pry the county seat away from Genoa, which barely enjoyed it for 50 years, it moved to a town founded only 10 years before.
Anyone checking out old pictures of the courthouse can see there isn’t much around it.
There were the buildings on either side of Esmeralda, and those along Railroad Avenue, which is where Highway 395 passes through town today.
There were only 30 homes built in the town by 1920, so it was hardly a burgeoning metropolis.
The 1920 Census didn’t even list Minden as a town, even though it had been the county seat for four years by that time.
Its residents were counted with those of the rest of East Fork.
By rights, the county seat should have gone to Gardnerville, Carson Valley’s largest town.
But when it came time to haggle, residents decided a lot more of them cared more about where their children went to school, than where the government was located.
And compared to a buggy ride to Genoa, even if that buggy had a gasoline motor, Minden must have seemed to be just around the corner.
As it turns out, it would be a long time before Carson Valley saw the sort of growth that Minden’s creation envisioned, and by that time town residents were just as glad for it to go somewhere else.
We’ve spent a lot of time in the courthouse, and we’ve enjoyed some of the interesting stories about its past.
So while toasting the new year, raise a glass to the Douglas County seat.