Unknown Soldiers


Unknown Soldiers

Elko County
  41.26196, -114.19341

"By the shocking amount of antelope, mule deer, wild mustangs and all the other regular Silver State critters I encountered on the way out here, chances are good that people don't come out this way very often. And why should they? To capture an historic marker, that's why! Oh wait, that's just me. Let's hope others will follow in my footsteps. This remote corner of Nevada is so isolated even the sagebrush know it. They grow tall and "bushy," almost begging to be noticed. This person did." -- Journal Entry, May 2008

NE corner of SR 233 and Cemetery Rd, 23 miles north of I-80 -- Montello

Original Date Visited: 5/14/08

Signed: Despite its location, this marker is well-signed on both lanes of SR 233.

Notes: This one sits well off the beaten path of Interstate 80. Although it's only 23 miles to Montello from the offramp, it really requires a 50-mile round trip to obtain this single marker. To make things interesting, the Montello exit (signed as "Oasis") is located in between two necessary fuel stops -- West Wendover and Wells (20 miles each way). Fill up in either town and head straight for Montello. Fuel and services are non-existent in all directions between these two necessary stops! Once you leave Montello on SR 233/UT 30, the nearest fuel is 94 miles away in Snowville, Utah. This is a remote corner of Nevada that only locals traverse.

The lonely drive to Montello

Like a finely-sharpened dagger, the very lonely blacktop of SR 233 cuts directly through the tranquil country side teeming with wildlife! On our way out here we glanced at least a dozen antelope and a handful of deer that strayed very close to the highway fence. While the speed limit on this highway is a regular 70MPH, take extra caution of our furry friends. This is no place to breakdown. At Mile 23 ... Only the shell remained! In May 2009, [73] was one of two state markers with a missing plaque and sat naked for all to see.

Update June 2014: Marker 73 was one of thirty state markers that received a much-needed facelife thanks to Nevada's 150th Battle Born Centennial. This couldn't have come at a better time for this one considering the very important story to be told here. Enjoy!

  • Like a finely-sharpened dagger, the very lonely blacktop of SR 233 cuts directly through the tranquil country side -- a remote landscape that is scouring with wildlife!
  • Although not far from the freeway, Marker 73 is one of the more isolated markers in the system
  • Marker 73 sits closer to Salt Lake City than Carson City.  Utah begins at those mountains in the b.g.
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Exact Description:
Victims of the influenza epidemic of 1918, the graves of ten soldiers buried here represent a mystery to this day as to their identity. During a period of World War I, troop trains ran regularly through Montello. As soldiers became ill en route, they were unloaded at the nearest hospitals. The Southern Pacific Railroad kept a doctor at Montello who checked every train en route. Ill passengers were treated in a makeshift hospital at the town's hotel.

The graves were unmarked for years but through the persistent efforts of Mr. and Mrs. William Kimber of Montello, and the 40 & 8 of Las Vegas, the previously unmarked graves, although still unidentified as to name, were marked in 1975.

Unfortunately, fires had destroyed the original government records.

Marker 73 in May 2009. The missing plaque nearly erased the incredibly sad history to be told here.

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Related Links & Markers

 The Unknown Soldiers in Montello: Elko Rose 

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