for Virginia City, pausing for a few months to get
its breath at Carson City, the territorial capital,
before attempting the grade up Gold Canyon.
Its anniversary edition, the only known copy of
which now reposes in the vault of the paper's present
proprietors, gave some hint of the vicisitudes of
Publishing in pioneer times.
"One year ago today the first number of The
Territorial Enterprise was issued at Genoa (Mormon
Station)" said the lead editorial for December 17,
1859. "Our publishing room was in Singleton's Hall,
Nevada Hotel, a room indiscriminately used by
preachers, debating societies, secret organizations and,
once at least, as a prison. Upon the latter occasion we
had a man accused of crime chained to cur printing
press with a log chain for two days and a half.
We now occupy the upper half of Major Ormsby s
adobe building, southwest corner of The Plaza (in
Carson City). We find ourselves in more comfort-
able circumstance in many respects. To be sure we
still have to descend from the editorial tripod to
superintend the cooking of a beefsteak, the seasomng
of a bean soup or the concotion of a pot ol cotfee.
As caterer to the inner man we yicld to none.
Three years later saw The Territorial Enterprise, in
common with the region it served, operating in
wildest bonanza, a Western institution ol fame
comparable to Wells Fargo Co., or the thorough-
braced Concord coach, and a fixture in Virginia City
where it has remained ever since. Its ownership had
now changed. Jernegan and James had sold out to
Joseph Goodman and Dennis McCarthy and the
affairs of the new firm where almost hysterically in
the ascendency. Its proprietors were takmg home
their profit every Saturday night in water pails filled
with gold double eagles. Its editorial policy, closely
following that of Horace Greeley's in the far-ott
New York Tribüne, was assuring the enlistment ot
Nevada and its fabulous wealth in the Union cause.
The Enterprise was the strong voice of authorify
between the Missouri and the Pacific Coast and
Virginia City was fast becoming the nchest city in
The year 1863 was marked by two cataclvsmic
episodes in the annals of Nevada s first newspaper.
The editorial statF acquired a ganghng red-headed
young man of unpredictable ways and possessed oi
what amounted to a genius for chaos who started
signing his stories Mark Twain, and the manage-
ment purchased the first steam operated press ever
seen in Nevada. The first run of the paper in steam
was the occasion of such an oftice celebration that the
edition of the by now booming daily appeared on
the streets eight hours late and Sam Clemens, having
slept in a C Street doorway, didn't show up for work
for three days.
Time, inevitably, has left its mutations on The
Territorial Enterprise since the heroic days of its youth.
It has reverted again to the Status of a weekly. Its
body type is composed by machine instead of the
thirty printers who once fumbled in the cases for its
to-the-modern-eye almost illegible agate and dia-
mond. Electricity has sueeeeded steam and a briet
interregnum of water power to activate its presses.
Sixteen tabloid pages as a regulär thing have sup-
planted the four bedsheet size pages of the sixties.
Its weekly sales are about double those reported in
The "C" Street Headquarters of
"The Enterprise" in Virginia City as it appeared in the
bonanza days of the fabulous ComstocU Lode.
its greatest days of authority and pride, although its
readers per copy are probably fewer than in a time
when a newspaper was a prized possession, passed
from hand to hand until it feil apart.
Its present proprietors, Charles Clegg and the
author of this brief chronicle, acquired the name ot
The Territorial Enterprise in 1951 and in the following
year combined it with the faltering Virginia City News
to appear under its current masthead in which men-
tion of the News is almost microscopic. Occupying