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of sign - Stokes Castle, one mile west of Austin, Nevada.
taken October 2008
courtesy of Jimmy Wayne
Started in the fall of
1896 and completed in June, 1897, by Anson Phelps Stokes, mine
developer, railroad magnate and member
of a prominent eastern
family, as a summer home for his sons, principally J.G. Phelps.
After the castle (or the tower, as the Stokes
family always referred to
it) was completed, it was used by the family for one brief period in
June and July, 1897. Since then, with
one possible exception,
the structure has remained unoccupied.
Stokes Castle is made of
native granite, hewn and put in place by the ancestors of people
still living in Austin. The huge stones were
raised with a hand winch
and held in position by rock wedging and clay mortar. The
architectural model for the castle was a
medieval tower Anson
Stokes had seen and admired on an Italian campagna, near Rome. It
originally had three floors, each with a
fireplace, plate glass
view windows, balconies on the second and third floors, and a
battlemented terrace on the roof. It had
plumbing very adequate
for the times and was sumptuously furnished.
The structure stands as
an abiding monument to the local men who built it and to those who
helped develop the mines of Austin.
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