Historic Structures

Mathias Rinckel Mansion, Carson City Nevada

Date added: September 14, 2021 Categories: Nevada House

Mathias Rinckel (1833-1879) was born in Altenheim in Germany. He was the youngest of a family of seven children. When he was nine months old, the family immigrated to America and settled in Warsaw, Illinois. In 1849 "Matt," then a sixteen year old farmer, joined a group of five young men and proceeded west to the gold fields. He remained in the Feather River district in California for ten years, by which time he had accumulated a degree of wealth in placer mining.

Leaving California, Rinckel came to Genoa in what was then Carson County, Utah Territory, and the next year, 1860, went to Virginia City, where he increased his fortune in mining.

In 1863, he settled permanently in Carson City, where he engaged primarily in livestock and butchering. He gained contracts to furnish meat for Virginia City miners, the timbermen at Glenbrook on Lake Tahoe, and others. By 1875, he was able to being construction on his mansion, which was finished in 1876. He built his house on the northwest corner of King and Curry Streets on the site of Carson City's first Post Office. Rinckel was to live there only three years. He died in October 1879 at the age of 46.

In addition to his previously mentioned activities, he owned and rented out many commercial structures in Carson City. A short biographical sketch of him on pages 561, 562 of Thompson and West's History of Nevada states that "Many monuments of his untiring energy are still visible in Carson, in the shape of fine buildings."

Mrs. Rinckel continued to live in the house until her death in 1933, after which it was occupied by the Rinckels' daughter, Louise, and her husband, George F. Blakeslee.

In addition to living in the house, the Blakeslees operated it as a house museum. They were induced to do so in 1941 at the urging of members of the cast of The Remarkable Andrew, a Paramount Pictures film which used the mansion as a backdrop in one of its scenes.

Louise Rinckel Blakeslee died in 1960 and the house continued to be shown as a museum until 1968, under the curatorship of Ronald Machado of Carson City.