Minden is a unique town among the towns in Nevada, and probably even among towns in the United States. It was mapped and defined on the ground before a building was erected. As a result, its' neatly laid out streets served as the guide for growth during the first fifty or so years. Since the 1920s new subdivisions have altered the symmetrical pattern of the town, but quality and pride remain.
History tells us that the Virginia and Truckee Railway, by terminating where it did in 1906, was the catalyst for the new village of Minden. Track laying from Carson City to somewhere in the Carson Valley began in late 1905. Even at this time, there existed in the mind of the public the thought that the railroad would not only reach Gardnerville, but would extend as far as Bodie with perhaps a branch reaching Alpine County.
The town was named after Minden, Germany, near the birthplace of H.F. Dangberg. There is no question that the Dangbergs made the town. The Dangberg Company presented a plan of the town of Minden to the Douglas County Commissioners in July of 1906.
The nucleus of the town developed from 1906 until around 1940.
During that time, the Minden Inn was a getaway destination for some of the biggest names in Hollywood, including Clark Gable and Jean Harlow. In the late 1950s, some small subdivisions appeared, and the business strip along Highway 395 accommodated some new commercial ventures. By the mid-1970s the explosion happened, and from that point on major subdivisions and exciting new businesses created a growth pattern that rolled into the 1980s and right up to this date. No let up appears in sight.
Local Newspaper Says It All
Nothing described the new town better than the following article from a special edition of the Record-Courier in 1909:
||A more ideal spot for the town cannot be imagined. Located on high grounds with a natural drainage in every direction, it is a beautiful townsite. Minden has not a great population as yet, for it takes time to build the class of cottages that are being erected here. The resources of the town are already large, and those living in Minden are all employed there. There is not a shack or cheap building in the entire place and those in charge are trying to keep it that way. The line of cottages that have been built are facing the town square where trees are growing. This will make a fine park in a few years. A resume of the industries at Minden makes a big showing. Everyone of them are works where more or less labor is employed and are concerns that bring business to the town. They consist of a railroad, flour mill, creamery, wool warehouse, stockyards, livery and feed barn, a big general store and a lumber yard. Take these along with the hay barn, hotel and bank that are now under way and you can form your own conclusions as to Minden. It certainly has a bright future.||
Minden has come a long way since 1906, and even further since 1992. Come with us and take a journey from the past into the present, and see what the future holds for Minden, Nevada.
Thank you for visiting the Town of Minden Web Site. If you have any questions about our town, please be sure to send them to us.
We thank the Minden Historical Society for letting us use information from Wynne M. Maule's wonderful book, "Minden, Nevada, The story of a Unique Town, 1906 to 1992".