Elko Airport (Terminus of the First Commercial Air Mail Route)
"Well then. This annoying marker almost banked me a ticket. I can't say I can blame the security guard either. I arrived at the present-day Elko Airport, camera and notepad in hand, and immediately caught the attention of a friendly security officer. I was a bit embarrassed and had a gut feeling that I was in the wrong place, but set my pride aside and went with it anyway ... inquiring about 'an historic marker at the Elko Airport.' He knew of no such thing and instead asked me why I brought a camera into a highly sophisticated airport system -- aka, why would I bring a camera into a facility chock full of surveillance cameras. Then, I really knew I was in the wrong place. I apologized and left dumbfounded ... drove a block down Mountain City Highway ... and here I am. If these journals should ever find their way to the SHPO, here's what this one has to say. For your information, I found this marker ONLY by way of following my own intuition. Your system sucks. #107 is a product of simple inconvenience thanks to some VERY outdated information. And you call yourselves Nevadans. That is all." -- Journal Entry, May 2008
Original Date Visited: 5/14/09
Notes: According to the SHPO,  is "located in the Airport Terminal in Elko, Nevada." Read them again and it sounds like the marker is located inside the airport terminal. Don't. Just don't. If you visit the present Elko Airport using these directions (everybody's first assumption) security might bother you about snooping around the place and may even ask you to leave! The "Airport Terminal" in question is actually the former Elko Airport! Unless you feel like stumbling upon it on accident do yourself a favor and follow my directions ...
- Access Mountain City Hwy (SR 225) from I-80 and look for a sign that reads "General Aviation Area," also signed as Murray Way on the right-hand side. Turn here and the marker will be on your immediate left under a tree. This small tree completely obscures the marker from a distance and makes it near impossible to spot from Mountain City Highway. This is the old Elko Airport grounds and terminal before the new one was built. You can thank me later.
On April 6, 1926, Varney Air Lines pilot Leon Cuddeback, carrying one bag of mail, landed his tiny Curtis Swallow bi-plane at Elko, Nevada, completing the first scheduled air mail run in the United States.
The single engine, 90-horsepower aircraft had taken off from Pasco, Washington, stopped at Boise, Idaho, for fuel and mail, then completed the 460-mile flight to Elko. The Varney contract was awarded October 27, 1925, at a rate of eights cents an ounce. Varney sold to Boeing, which merged with United Air Lines in 1931.
RUBY VALLEY PONY EXPRESS STATION
Related Links & Markers
Dirt Runways: Nevada's Elko Airport
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