Lake Valley ghost town
The site today is owned and managed by the BLM (Bureau of Land Management). If you visit, be sure to stop at the schoolhouse, where you'll find a small museum collection of photographs and artifacts. You can also pick up a map and guide for a self-guided walking tour for the townsite. Historical markers are located throughout the town near points of interest, and complement the information in the guide. At the time of this writing, the entire site is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, so be sure to check before visiting:
In 1895, two years after the mining boom subsided, a fire devastated a substantial portion of Lake Valley's downtown area. This old bank safe still stands near its original location.
Of course there is a railroad angle, hence my interest in visiting the area. In 1884, the railroad constructed a 13-mile branch line from Nutt (on the main line between Hatch and Deming) to Lake Valley. Although the line was abandoned in 1934, even today, the right of way is visible in many locations between the two townsites. A number of structures remain standing at Lake Valley.
Unfortunately, some portions of the Lake Valley site are off limits to visitors. The Lake Valley railroad station stands just beyond this gate.
np: Hank Williams - "First year blues"