Storey County Swimming pool located in Miners Park on Carson and F Streets. To the
right of the pool is the Comstock RV Park. The "V" on
the slope of Mt. Davidson (also known as Sun Mountain) stands
for "Virginia City." During the second and third decades
of the twentieth century, similar markings were placed on hills
near towns all over Nevada as navigation aids for U.S. mail planes,
which dropped bundles as they flew over the towns.
in this picture only as a faint shimmer atop Mt. Davidson is the
flagpole that Mark Twain mentions in chapter
55 of Roughing It. It is the original pole that was erected
in 1862 but is seldom used because the powerful winds that buffet
the peak will shred any flag left flying there for more than a few
weeks. An American flag is traditionally flown on the mountain on
the Fourth of July--the same date on which Mark Twain described
seeing a flag on the mountain as he rode out of Virginia City.
The summit of Mt. Davidson is 7,864 feet high (a figure you
can remember by substituting a "7" for the "1"
in 1864, the year Mark Twain left Virginia City). Vehicles can approach
to within about 500 yards of the summit, but the remaining ascent
is a steep hike up rocks. A memorial to the people who lost their
lives in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 was painted
on a granite boulder near the flagpole, and an American flag was
flown there during the month after that tragedy occurred. Mark Twain's remembrance of the flag
in Roughing It
notes that sunlight broke through the clouds to illuminate the flag
at the very moment the Union was winning historic victories at Gettysburg
and Vicksburg on July 7, 1864--another day on which record numbers
of Americans were killed.