Virginia City is one of the most historic of the western “boomtowns”. A boomtown is a place that suddenly experiences a major popular increase. In 1859, vast quantities of silver and gold were found on Mt. Davidson (within Virginia City). The find, known as “The Comstock Lode,” was the most extensive deposit of silver ever found in the United States. Mining operations lasted about 39 years within the city, which grew some 30,000 in population during that time. Many nearby cities such as San Francisco, California were born on the fortunes made from Virginia City. Today, Virginia City is the nation’s largest Historic Landmark. Over 2,000,000 people visit per year.