One town that, literally, can’t be missed in southern Nevada is Beatty. US 95 runs right through Beatty, 90 miles north of Las Vegas and 120 miles south of Tonopah. So you can’t miss it. Most folks either drive right through the town of 1,000 or stop for gas on their way north or south but our neverlefthome team is always looking for under-appreciated destinations and just had to investigate further.
Beatty was founded in 1905 and was named after Montillus Murray “Old Man” Beatty, a Civil War veteran and miner who had bought a nearby ranch in 1896. His picture is proudly displayed in the casino of the Stagecoach Hotel, where our investigative team stayed the night. The place even has its own in-house Denny’s, the place to eat in Beatty.
The town’s primary reason for existence was to serve the nearby mining boomtown of Rhyolite and other towns in the Bullfrog district. Freight wagons, pulled by horses or mules, initially hauled stuff through Beatty to the nearest railroad in Las Vegas. But, after 1906, the Las Vegas and Tonopah Railroad began regular service to Beatty and by 1907 there were three railroads servicing the town, which became the railhead for many mines in the area. By 1940, though, all three railroads had shut down and the rail lines abandoned. Beatty even had its own newspaper at one time—the Beatty Bullfrog Miner, which went out of business in 1909.
OK, so much for history.
Jay and Tanya did their research and hit three of the town’s main attractions listed on popular travel websites. First, of course, was the Stagecoach Hotel and Casino. This place seems to be the main hub for both visitors and locals and despite the obvious room vacancies, the slightly-cranky front desk clerk/casino cashier was adamant that she would only be available to check us in after 3pm, NO EXCEPTIONS. Ok, then, fine. We’ll just go over to attraction #2, the Beatty Museum.
But attraction #3, the place most people come to Beatty for is…drum roll, please… EDDIE WORLD! Eddie World, opened in 2001, is also known as the Death Valley Nut and Candy Co. is this odd combination of mega-gas station and candy/Subway/ice cream/jerky store sharing the parking lot with the Stagecoach Hotel/Casino/Denny’s.
Beatty may seem like just another small town in rural Nevada, not worth visiting. But after driving hours through the desert it’s a welcome oasis and an interesting glimpse into the history of the American West.