Jan. 16 meeting showcases filmmaker

Jan. 16 meeting showcases filmmakerBy NICK ROGERS

Historical Society of the Upper Mojave Desert

The Historical Society of the Upper Mojave Desert will hold its first meeting of the New Year on Tuesday, Jan. 16 at 7 p.m. at the Historic USO Building.

The featured speaker will be documentarian Ted Faye (via video link), presenting a new video on the Nevada gold rush of the early 20 century.

“Tales From the Gold Rush,” part of Faye’s latest series, “History to Go,” discusses the sites of the 1905 American gold gush located in Tonopah, Goldfield, Beatty and Death Valley… not far from our Indian Wells Valley.

Thousands of hopeful miners from around the world journeyed to one of the most forbidding of deserts to try their luck at getting rich quick.

Faye’s new DVD features four episodes from “History to Go.”

The first, “The Fight of the Century,” tells about famed lightweight boxer Joe Gans’ fight in Goldfield.

“Wyatt Earp’s Bar” showcases the recently purchased antique that is said to be from Wyatt Earp’s Northern Saloon in Tonopah, Nev.

“Mr. Cook’s Bank” is the story of one of the gold rush’s richest bankers who left behind an iconic ghost town structure.

And finally “A Gold Rush Family” is that of Allan Metscher, whose grandfather came to Ellis Island from Germany in 1900 with a gold fever that led him straight to the mining fields of the west.

Ted Faye’s first documentary, produced in 1994, “Death Valley Memories,” sponsored in part by U.S. Borax, featured an introduction by Ronald Reagan and was narrated by actor Eddie Albert.

Following the film’s premier, the company hired Faye to serve as their history consultant for the next five years.

During that time, he had access to the company’s vast artifacts, many of which dated from the time that 20-mule teams were used to take borax from the Harmony Borax Works in Death Valley to the railroad in Mojave.

Faye has been producing documentary films, historical and informational videos and tour guides since 1997. His interest in Death Valley has spurred many productions involving mule teams, prospectors, railroads, pioneers and even ghosts, and has led to several trips to Ridgecrest for well-attended talks about his videos.

HSUMD meets on the third Tuesday of most months. Meetings are free, and all are welcome to attend.

Story First Published: 2018-01-12