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Newsletter 2015

Goodsprings Historical Society

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Goodsprings Historical Society
Newsletter #15 Spring 2015


You don't have to be an old-timer to love Goodsprings and its history. Come meet your friends and neighbors, see early photos, hear stories of early mining history, enjoy a great old-time potluck lunch and find out what the Goodsprings Historical Society is all about.


8:30 AM-11:00: Registration/Donuts at Community Center Historical Society displays School tour: See the inside of our school, now 102 years old. Hear the history from its 1913 beginning and read the special essays this year's students have on display. Then visit the Old Club House and enjoy the school history in pictures, stories, and books.

12:30-2:00 PM: Potluck Lunch at Community Center Bring your favorite meat dish, salad, or dessert to serve at least 8 people. Drinks, plates and silverware will be provided.

2:10 PM: Group photo: in the park

2:30 PM: GHS Annual Meeting: Community Center
School History displays after meeting

SUNDAY, MAY 3, 2015

8-10:30 AM: The 29th Traditional Miner's Breakfast at Community Center Join the Historical Society for a typical miner's breakfast of pancakes, eggs, and bacon

12:00 PM: Potluck Lunch

This will be a great time for fellowship, reading the memorial book, looking through the reunion history, viewing Goodsprings history in the Community Center, then visiting School History Displays at the Old Club House.

We have not seen many of our faithful reunion members for a couple of years. We know traveling great distances can be difficult, but we want you to know how much you are missed. We really hope to see you this year. Let us know if you are coming goodsprings.org contact form or call 702-645-7736. Thank you.

Be sure to check our website (www.goodsprings.org) or go to Facebook and search GHS for changes and updates.

The year in review, 2014-2015

GHS Annual Meeting: The Goodsprings Historical Society annual meeting followed the potluck on Saturday, May 4, 2014.  Fifty three signed the ledger book for attendance. Julie Newberry was recognized for her work compiling the history of the Goodsprings School and for her leadership in the 100 year celebration of the school.  Three Trustees (Stephanie Stephens, Dave Beisecker and Dave Lowe) were elected by the group: Bonnie Casto displayed the lovely Memorial Quilt she has been working on. It will be displayed at future GHS events. A book written by Tara and David Kilpatrick about the Eggers Family was shown.  It is available for purchase at the Pioneer Store. Clark County School District Trustee Carolyn Edwards reported that Sandy Valley HS has received some large portables from Creech Air Force Base to use as  classrooms.  She also noted that the District is planning a bricks and mortar building for the school as part of the next bond election in 2016.

Julie and Steve
Julie Newberry was recognized for her Goodsprings School History Collection and leadership in the 100th year celebration

A Time Capsule containing memorabilia from the GHS and other individuals including the current school students was placed in the ceiling of the Goodsprings School in honor of the School's Centennial.  Items included in the capsule were early photos, Julie Newberry's new book, The Goodsprings School, The First 100 years, current newspapers, and photos and stories from students enrolled in the school.  The capsule will be opened in 2113.  The Society voted to spend $250 to purchase an Old Spanish Trail marker for the trail site in Goodsprings.


As of the date of the meeting, 21 members had joined GHS.  In honor of the sesquicentennial for the State of Nevada all new members and members who renewed their membership were given a special deck of cards highlighting 52 important sites in the State.  The Goodsprings School is represented in the deck (7 of Diamonds). A limited number of decks were available for future members of GHS.  The Miner's Breakfast Sunday morning featured home raised Goodsprings eggs and pancake batter from the chef at the Gold Strike Casino.

reunion 2014
2014 Reunion, Sunday, May 4

memorial quilt
Bonnie Casto displays the memorial quilt
she made for the reunion.



October: The Old Spanish Trail monument was installed at the original spring site off Vegas Street on Oct. 11. Ashley Hall, the President of the Old Spanish Trail Association dedicated the marker. Forty people attended the dedication and then adjourned to the Community Center for a program on the Old Spanish Trail given by Dr. Elizabeth Warren.  GHS sponsored the day's events which were very well received.

osta-gs 2014
Ashley Hall and Sandy Valley
Scouts at the dedication of the
Marker for The Old Spanish Trail
ewarren 2014
Dr. Elizabeth Warren talking
about the Old Spanish Trail


December: At the school's annual holiday program, Santa presented all the students and their younger brothers and sisters a gift.  GHS has sponsored the gift giving as a reminder of early Goodsprings residents who made sure each year that all children in Goodsprings received a Christmas stocking.  The early stockings were handmade and stuffed with fruit, candy and a small gift.

1970s Santa: Gene Pickering served
Goodsprings School for 25 years


January: Clark County officials, accompanied by Steve Fleming and Dave Beisecker, walked the approved Yellow Pine Railroad Trail.  The trail which has been in the works for over 10 years is under contract for completion sometime  in the next 2 years.

Beisecker 2014
Walking the Yellow Pine Rail Trail
with Dave Beisecker

March: On Mar. 21 the Friends of Mineralogy (Southern California Chapter) held a symposium in Goodsprings. Programs on Goodsprings geology, mining history and minerals in the area were conducted at the Community Center.  The group then went on mineral collecting field trips to Crystal Pass, the Whale and the Red Cloud to name a few. GHS members who attended had a great time and encouraged the group to make Goodsprings a part of their future programming.

mine trip 2014
Participants at Prairie Flower Field Trip
during the Mineral Symposium

A Circus came to Goodsprings

By Mickey Moran

Some time in early 1950 a circus came to town to rest before going on to Las Vegas for performance shows. Circus wagons were parked East of the Pioneer Saloon. I'm not sure what the name was but one of the wagons had "Seal-Bros." advertisement displayed.

Julie Robbins at elephant camp area

I Doty
Irene Doty driving buggy
minus horse



My mother, Irene Moran, was leasing the Hotel from Deke and Celeste Lowe at the time and she became acquainted with the circus management when they came to dine/drink. She loved elephants and talked her way into riding one.

Irene Doty on elephant
Irene Doty on "Babe"

Irene M on "Babe" by Hotel



I was more interested in horses/ponies and talked them into setting up their pony ring. One of the girls my age stayed with me at the hotel and I talked her into going to school with me for a few weeks so the circus must have stayed for awhile. Nearly everyone in town was given a free pass to attend a show in Vegas, I think. It was quite an experience.

Mickey on pony; Kaye or Raye Freelove standing;
one twin is on pony behind view from handler

Mickey and ?name? watering ponies



And so the circus came and went. "1950 Seal Bros. Broke up July 3" according to the circushistory.org, so this may have been one of their last in business.

Hotel Gang
Lou, Julie R., Cleve, Irene M.,
Pat Ballance, Butch(top)

George Bardwell, ~1946+/-, at famous tree
house (Cottonwood Cabin)


Burros at springs
behind saloon

Residences behind hotel/saloon


Carl & Winona Wasserbach (owner) ~1940



Goodsprings School: The Seventies

By Julie Newberry

During the 70s the school was growing, and it had a lot to do with the number of families moving into Sandy Valley. Children living on the California side of Sandy Valley joined their Nevada neighbors to attend Goodsprings School as well. The school, in that decade, included only 1st through 6th grades since 7th and 8th graders were bused into Henderson. There were as many as 45 students at any given time. Kindergarten was still not offered. In lieu of a principal of the small rural schools, Henry (Hank) Bozarth, CCSD area superintendent, was given that responsibility.

A day at the school, 1974


Parents were becoming more involved in their children's school life. Several mothers of Goodsprings students had formed "The Mother's Club/Christmas Club" which held fundraisers for the traditional Santa Claus program and party held at the school. During the 1975-76 school year, parents organized the Parent Teacher Organization (P.T.O.), an official group that was registered with the state. Ruth Rawlinson was a leader of this movement. Through the P.T.O., parents bought the first Goodsprings School reading management system, the SRA Reading Program. This was a series of story booklets that allowed students to advance at their own paces in skills such as reading comprehension, vocabulary, and fluency. A homemade quilt was raffled to earn money for a science cabinet and a Dukane Machine. The latter included cards on all levels to be inserted, teaching students a variety of lessons from social studies to language arts. Parents began helping in the classroom and made sure students had the supplies they needed. One year Ruth Rawlinson taught the students to play the flutaphone. Since there was no lunch program at that time, Mrs. Rawlinson, with help from other mothers, began making hot lunches every Friday and taking them to the school. Superintendent Kenny Guinn followed up on that idea by sending frozen lunches out to the school on the high school bus. Someone was hired to heat and serve them.

There were many teachers through the years, a few of them made quite an impression on parents and students. One year Glen and Charlotte Lutz took students camping in Death Valley. Teacher Lou Denoncort looked for ways to enrich the students' learning experiences. He started a field day in which students competed in races and other physical activities. He began a Title I program which provided federal funds to help students from low income families. He held a picnic at his home on the last day of school which included a barbeque and a swimming party. When teacher Chuck Santelman took over the school, he continued the barbeque and swimming tradition at Mr. Denoncort's home. A poetry contest was sponsored by a local women's group, and Ronnie Hanson's poem won. For his prize, Ronnie was given a tree to plant in front of the school. Mr. Santelman was also known for teaching units of study which crossed curriculum lines. Among several memorable examples was a simulated archaeological unit prepared by Dr. Claude Warren, Professor of Archeology at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, where students had a chance to experience an archeology dig.

With increasing demands of the curriculum in multi-grade schools, it became necessary to hire teacher aides. Helen Davis was one of the first ones and spent many years after that with Goodsprings School. So as the bell kept on ringing, curriculum expanded, testing increased, technology arrived, and teachers became more creative in helping children learn.

school-pic 1979
Class picture 1979


Memorials: It is with great sadness that we report the loss of Goodsprings Old-Timer Jim Stephens and Charlene Cruze this year. Although the following were remembered at last year's reunion, we regret that these names were left out of that newsletter. We are sad to list the loss of the following: Shannen Miller, Tom La Pratt, Grover "Red" Loftis, Don Hedrick, Dave (Friendly Dave) Kent, Sherrie Rhoades, and Dee Whitehurst.

Election: There will be 2 positions on the Goodsprings Historical Society Board of Trustees that will be up for reelection in May: Lary Anderson, the owner/operator of  101.3 fm radio, and Dr. Elizabeth Warren, our local historian. All members are welcome to run for office.  Please let one of the present Trustees know if you would like to be put on the ballot.

Scholarships: Mini-grants and Scholarship Awards Overall Mission: To foster among students living in the Goodsprings Township (Goodsprings, Jean, Sandy Valley, Sloan and Primm) an interest in the history, prehistory and natural history of the Township and its environs, and to encourage advanced study and higher education for such students. A scholarship committee is in place. Applications and all necessary information will be available soon on goodsprings. org. Help us find some worthy candidates.

Robbins House
Robbins' house used as a school 1910.
UNLV Special Collections


Endangered Sites: One of the things that makes Goodsprings such a special place is its historic mining camp buildings.  Protecting these buildings is a priority of the GHS. GHS spruced up the Old Club House this year with new paint and replaced windows and doors, but many other iconic buildings are in need of help.  In February, a demolition sign appeared on the Robbins' cabin.  The owner felt the building was hindering the sale  of the property and needed to come down.  It is widely accepted that before the 1913 school was built, classes were held in this building making it the first non-tent school in Goodsprings.  GHS members intervened with the owners explaining the importance of the building and,  as of now, the cabin is still  standing. GHS and the Goodsprings Community Association are negotiating with Clark County to have the Robbins' cabin moved to County land.  

In response to concerns voiced at the Annual Meeting, GHS has been talking to the owners of the Campbell stone cabin.  The owners recognize the importance of the cabin and have asked GHS to help them preserve it.  Protecting all the artifacts of Goodsprings history-stories and pictures and weathered buildings- is the mission of the GHS.   Your membership dues and  support are vital  for us to continue our mission.

Our thanks to all 65 GHS members for 2014-2015 and especially to:

Lead/Zinc Members: Russiano Decaro, Steve Fleming, Greg Fleming, Colleen Hicks, James Neubauer, Ronald Mayo, James and Faye Osburn, George and Carolyn (Pack) Patchin, Noel Sheckells, Bobbie Pool, Carl and Mary Robinson, Barbara Schwartz, Peter Simon II, Robert George Allen.

Gold Members: Donn and Mary Blake, Joan Lapan, Bob and Ann Osburn, Len and Laura Carroll, Carolyn Edwards, Dave and Diana Powell, Claude and Liz Warren, Bob Stodal

Membership Dues: (check one)
Individual_______$5.00;    Gold Member__________$50.00;
Family__________$10.00;   Lead/Zinc Member____$100.00;

Membership Form 2015-2016:

Name______________________________ Amount___________



Send to: Goodsprings Historical Society, 
         Box 603, Goodsprings, NV 89019

See you in May!

The Goodsprings Historical Society, a nonprofit organization established in 2001 to preserve the historical and natural resources of the Goodsprings Township by educating the public about its environment, archaeology and history, publishes this newsletter yearly. www.goodsprings.org
Stephen Fleming
Lary Anderson
Dave Beisecker
Julie Newberry
David Lowe
Elizabeth Warren
Stephanie Stephens
Treasurer/Web site Manager: Mickey Moran
Secretary/Newsletter Editor: Mary Blake


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