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As with many of his more “urban” photographs, this panoramic stereoview of Virginia City shows a booming industrial and residential area. This is the fourth in a six part panorama. Watkins made a number of panoramic views in his career capturing the evolution of San Francisco, Portland and Virginia City.
This view shows Virginia City at its peak. The population was at an all time high of 23,000 people. The mines were extremely profitable, returning more than $1 million per month to the shareholders. And the miners also enjoyed high wages. “Virginia City was a booming, boisterous, 24-hour a day town, boasting live theatre productions…many newspapers…a number of fraternal and social organizations, and an infrastructure of other recreational facilities…” 1