I was introduced to a couple of fascinating historical landmarks in Nevada last weekend, not too far from Tahoe.
Built in 1864, the Kirkwood Inn is one of the oldest original stage stations and Inns still operating from the early days of the post Gold Rush era. It apparently was an old roadhouse along the old Amador Wagon Road, which sits amidst the mountains at close to 8,000 feet. We arrived on a Harley for lunch.
Inside, they tried to reserve as much of the original wooden beams, walls and decor as they could. Food is tres American, diner style, but served in a rustic, charming log cabin setting, with picnic tables outside for those wanting to soak up a bit of mountain air and sunshine.
My favorite historical fact is about builder Zack Kirkwood, who is fondly remembered for frequently entertaining his guests with tales of how he had beat the tax collector of each county by moving his herds from one county to the other depending on which county tax man appeared.
We then discovered Genoa Bar, established in 1853, known to be Nevada’s oldest ‘thirst parlor.’ Equally as rustic, this bar sits in a small town setting rather than by mountains and not much else. It’s very ‘saloon’ style, with a pool table, an old jukebox, and animals, trinkets and memoires lining every inch of wall space.
Genoa itself is known to be an old ghost town and its website is hilarious with background music you can only listen to for a moment or two before its time to ‘switch to another channel’ — either that or get up and dance a jig. (cowboy hat and all)
It has had several names since 1884, but is now known as the “Old Genoa Bar” – No Horses Allowed. I guess this is one of the reasons why I moved west.