Nevada Ghost Towns Photograph Collection

 Collection
Identifier: UNRS-P2015-04

Scope and Contents

Collection contains Shelton's photographs and slides of ghost towns and historic sites that accompany his unpublished book, A Catalog of Ghost Town, Mining Camps, and Historic Sites of Nevada, written in 2001.

Dates

  • 1988-2001

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Materials must be used on-site; advance notice suggested. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.

Biographical Note

S. Martin "Marty" Shelton served in the United States Naval Reserve and traveled throughout Nevada. His interest in the state's history led him to take photographs of the historic sites and ghost towns he saw during his visits, some places more than once. He used his camera to document the sites as well as the changes to abandoned buildings or mining camps that had occurred from his previous visits. Due to his military credentials, he was able to enter military installations, such as Nellis Air Force Base, and visit sites where civilians were otherwise barred. Over the course of about 20 years, he documented over 1,300 sites, producing slides and mainly black and white prints.

By the late 1990s Shelton approached the University of Nevada Press with an idea to publish a hardcover book with explanatory materials and some of the key photographs, issued with a CD which would include all the photographs and captions in a database. The book's title was A Catalog of Ghost Town, Mining Camps, and Historic Sites of Nevada and he completed the draft in 2001. At that time, many book publishers were issuing books with CDs, but the trend was short lived, and the Press did not undertake the project.

In 2003, Shelton's extensive documentary photograph collection and text of his proposed book on historic Nevada sites was donated to the Nevada State Historic Preservation Office. The collection was available to researchers interested in these areas, with several previously unrecorded sites that Shelton discovered. Due to administrative changes in the Historic Preservation Office, it became impossible to maintain the collection there; the collection was then accepted by the Special Collections Department at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Shelton retired as a Captain from the Naval Reserve and lives in Texas.

Extent

9 Linear Feet (9,565 photographs in 9 boxes and 14 binders)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

S. Martin "Marty" Shelton served in the United States Naval Reserve and traveled throughout Nevada. His interest in the state's history led him to document the historic sites and ghost towns he saw during his visits. Over the course of about 20 years, he documented over 1,300 sites, producing slides and many black and white prints. Collection contains Shelton's photographs and slides of ghost towns and historic sites that accompany his unpublished book, A Catalog of Ghost Town, Mining Camps, and Historic Sites of Nevada, written in 2001.

Arrangement

Arranged by location.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by S. Martin Shelton in 2012. Photographs transferred to the Photo Archives by Jacquelyn Sundstrand, Special Collections Archivist and Librarian, in 2015.

Related Materials

Related archival materials held by the UNR Special Collections Department:

S. Martin Shelton Papers on Historic Nevada Sites (2012-20)

Creator

Title
Guide to the Nevada Ghost Towns Photograph Collection
Status
Completed
Author
Jessica Maddox
Date
February 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Repository Details

Part of the University of Nevada, Reno. Special Collections Department Repository

Contact:
Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center
1664 N. Virginia St.
Reno Nevada 89557-0322 USA
775-682-5665
775-682-5724 (Fax)