Austin was a very interesting, historic town. Ruben and Sissie took us in as part of their family and made sure we would never forget their town. Ruben gave us a little tour around the hills, pointing out mines and old homesteads as we went. There was an old 1800’s castle overlooking the town- the owner only stayed in it once! We are learning about how dangerous mines are; about how they collapse, how the air can be contaminated, and how many children have been injured or killed by playing around them. It has become common to see signs and fences around old mines stating “stay out- stay alive.”
The mountains are truly riddled with old mines. We learned that Nevada has some of the richest mineral deposits in the country. They still currently mine for gold, silver, turquoise, uranium, and many other precious metals, gems, and minerals.
The locals often take up the past time of digging for old artifacts from the miners who used to live here. Ruben and Sissie showed us their vast collection of antiques ranging from glass bottles to old Chinese painted marbles. They even had a glass bottle from the 1800’s of Dijon Mustard from France that was almost perfectly preserved. We had quite a good time looking though their unique collection. There are many treasures to be found around here if you are into antiques and like to work a shovel!