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Transcript of interview with Jim Marsh by Claytee D. White, June 5, 2012

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2012-06-05
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Jim Marsh in Denver, Colorado. Father was the chief for the Colorado Patrol. Mother lived in Nebraska. Jim split time in both places while growing up. He was a service member of the Army and once getting out of the service he started his work with his father at a Ford dealership. Jim went on to work and own dealership in several different areas, Colorado, California, New Mexico, and Washington states before arriving in Las Vegas, NV in 1971. Once arriving in Las Vegas Marsh purchased a dealership called American Auto Mart. Around 1976 Jim Marsh bought the Santa Fe Saloon along with the twenty lots surrounding it for 12,500. This was his first experience in the gaming industry Marsh was the only dealership in the world for 25 years to have a gaming license in a new-car dealership. Marsh discovered interest in Belmont when there was a lone resident Rose Walter. The two bartered and Jim gained land in Belmont and went on to build a bar and church for the town. Marsh eventually went on to own the Skyline Casino. Jim Marsh founded the Nevada Auto Auction in 1987 on Las Vegas Boulevard South Eventually sold it and used the investment to build the Longstreet Casino. Marsh was' also a member of business organizations, Better Business Bureau and The Red Cross Marsh has been a member of the Salvation Army Advisory Board for at least 25 years. Tonopah is another location that Marsh has invested in. After leasing the gaming at the Mizpah Hotel to later buying the Valley Bank building and moving the gaming from Mizpah. It is still successful today. He also purchased the Tonopah Station House which is a hotel bar, and restaurant; along with owning the grocery store Scolari's next-door. Tonopah has proved to be a very good investment for Jim Marsh.

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[Transcript of interview with Jim Marsh by Claytee D. White, June 5, 2012]. Jim Marsh oral history interview, 2012 June 05. OH-01198. [Transcript.] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections & Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

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/i3^7 7 0/z An Interview with Jim Marsh An Oral History Conducted by Claytee D. White The Boyer Early Las Vegas Oral History Project Oral History Research Center at UNLV University Libraries University of Nevada Las Vegas ©The Boyer Early Las Vegas Oral History Project University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2012 Produced by: The Oral History Research Center at UNLV - University Libraries Director: Claytee D. White Editors: Barbara Tabach, Melissa Robinson Transcribers: Kristin Hicks Interviewers and Project Assistants: Barbara Tabach and Claytee D. White 11 The recorded interview and transcript have been made possible through the generosity of Dr. Harold Boyer. The Oral History Research Center enables students and staff to work together with community members to generate this selection of first-person narratives. The participants in this project thank the university for the support given that allowed an idea the opportunity to flourish. The transcript received minimal editing that includes the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader’s understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. In several cases photographic sources accompany the individual interviews. The following interview is part of a series of interviews conducted under the auspices of the Boyer Early Las Vegas Oral History Project. Claytee D. White, Project Director Director, Oral History Research Center University Libraries University Nevada, Las Vegas Table of Contents Interview with Jim Marsh June 5th, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada Conducted by Claytee D. White Preface...........................................................................v Bom in Denver, CO; father a patrol chief; mother lived in Nebraska spent about 10 months a year there; beginning works at the dealerships, father bought into a ford dealership, worked for Pontiac division as a district manger; owned a Pontiac dealership in Longview, WA; moved to Las Vegas in 1971; purchased a dealership once owned by Herb Biddulph called American Auto Mart; mention of the Casbar Lounge in the Sahara..........................................................................1-5 Belonged to the Chamber of Commerce; ran for political office in 1976; mention of Howard Hughes; owns business in Centennial Hills; Skyline Casino in Henderson; Scotch 80’s and Rancho Circle; Kaltenborn developed the Huntridge area; bought the Santa Fe Saloon and twenty lots surrounding it; gaming license................6 - 10 Attonery Louis Wiener; gaming license in a dealership; Goldfield; Dotty’s regulations; Belmont; Rose Walter; Building of a church in Belmont; purchase of the Skyline Casino; John Kish; Dummkopfs German Band..............................................11 - 15 Nevada Auto Auction; Longstreet Casino; Jack Longstreet; Better Business Bureau; Red Cross; Military Service; Creative advertising - commercials; A1 Bramlet; stolen jeep from Marsh’s lot filled with explosives by Ed Hanley and A1 Bramlet...........16-23 Tonopah; parades in Tonopah and Belmont; dressing up as Lady Godiva; Mizpah Hotel; Tonopah Station House; Scolari’s grocery store; Humbug; Goldfield; Brewery; Nixon Building; George Wingfield and George Nixon; Crescent Solar Project; discussion of Las Vegas and coming back from the recession; Golden Nugget; Union Plaza; Oscar’s; Binions; Cortez Mine; Hacks and Tracks bus trip; Diana’s Punch Bowl; Eureka Opera House; Nevada Northern Railroad; Campbell-Kelly Forge; Crescent Dunes Solar; Laws Railroad Museum; Jim Rogers Movie Museum; Armagosa Opera House.............24 - 36 Index.....................................................................37-38 IV Preface Jim Marsh bom in Denver, Colorado. Father was the chief for the Colorado Patrol. Mother lived in Nebraska. Jim split time in both places while growing up. He was a service member of the Army and once getting out of the service he started his work with his father at a Ford dealership. Jim went on to work and own dealerships in several different areas, Colorado, California, New Mexico, and Washington states before arriving in Las Vegas, NV in 1971. Once arriving in Las Vegas Marsh purchased a dealership called American Auto Mart. Around 1976 Jim Marsh bought the Santa Fe Saloon along with the twenty lots surrounding it for 12,500. This was his first experience in the gaming industry. Marsh was the only dealership in the world for 25 years to have a gaming license in a new-car dealership. Marsh discovered interest in Belmont when there was a lone resident Rose Walter. The two bartered and Jim gained land in Belmont and went on to build a bar and church for the town. Marsh eventually went on to own the Skyline Casino. Jim Marsh founded the Nevada Auto Auction in 1987 on Las Vegas Boulevard South. Eventually sold it and used the investment to build the Longstreet Casino. Marsh was also a member of business organizations, Better Business Bureau and The Red Cross. Marsh has been a member of the Salvation Army Advisory Board for at least 25 years. Tonopah is another location that Marsh has invested in. After leasing the gaming at the Mizpah Hotel to later buying the Valley Bank building and moving the gaming from Mizpah. It is still successful today. He also purchased the Tonopah Station House which is a hotel, bar, and restaurant; along with owning the grocery store Scolari’s next-door. Tonopah has proved to be a very good investment for Jim Marsh. v ORAL HISTORY RESEARCH CENTER AT UNLV Boyer Early Las Vegas Oral History Project Use Agreement Name of Narrator: Name of Interviewer: We, the above named, give to thc/Onif History Research Center of UNLV, the recorded interview(s) initiated on (a as an unrestricted gift, to be used for such scholarly and educational purjfo^s as shall Ik- determined, and transfer to the University of Nevada I,as Vegas, legal title and all literary property rights including copyright. This gift does not preclude the right of the interviewer, as a representative of UNLV, to use the recordings and related materials for scholarly pursuits. There will be no compensation for Library Special Collections 4505 Maryland Parkway, Box 457010, Las Vegas, Nevada 89154-7070 (702) 895-2222 This is Claytee White and I'm with Mr. Jim Marsh. Today is June 5th, 2012, and we're in his office at the corner of Sahara and Eastern. So how are you today? Very good, Claytee. Thank you so much for having me in. Tell me a little bit about your early life, where you grew up and what that was like. Well, I was bom in Denver, Colorado. My father was the chief of the Colorado Highway Patrol at that time. My parents were separated when I was about five. My mother moved to Nebraska and my father stayed in Denver. So I spent my time back and forth. I went usually ten months in Nebraska, then two months in Colorado every year. And how did you get from there to Las Vegas? I think you were in the state of Washington at one point? Well, I was working for my father. World War II he went in the service and he was a provost marshal for the Army Air Corps. When he got out of service, he spent another year with the highway patrol then he bought into a Ford dealership in Denver. So after I got out of the service, I worked for my father for a period of five or six years and then I went to work for Pontiac division as a soDcalled district manager and I traveled southern Colorado, northern New Mexico. Then I got transferred to California. I lived in the San Joaquin Valley for three years and a year and a half in the Bay Area. Then I quit and I got offered the Pontiac dealership in a little town called Longview, Washington. So I was there for five years. Why cars? Because of your father? Yeah, pretty much because my father. And what about this business keeping you involved today? What do you still like about 1 it? Well, of course, the thing about any business, you like the activity about it and hopefully you make some money doing it. Any siblings? I've got a daughter, Stacey. She will be 51, 52—I get in trouble by not knowing the age—in October, yes. It's okay. Sometimes I have a problem with my own age. So after Longview, why Las Vegas? You know, it just so happened I had sold my dealership in Longview and I was going to go to Seattle, Washington. In Seattle, Washington, Boeing had a—their business was terrible. There was a severe recession in Seattle and I had made a proposal to buy a Pontiac dealership in downtown Seattle. The economy got so bad that businesses were closing. The billboard said, “The last person to leave Seattle, please turn off the lights.” And I said this is heresy to try to do this. So there I was sitting in Longview. I sold my business and I didn't know what to do and I happened to read an ad in the automotive news about a little AMC Jeep dealership that was for sale. It didn't say where; it just said the Southwest. So I answered the ad and it just so happens that the fellow who was working for American Motors at that time was a friend of mine who had worked for Pontiac and he said the dealership was in Las Vegas and would I like to meet him here and then review it. And I did. That was in 1971. That's how I happened to move to Las Vegas. Had you ever been to Las Vegas prior to that? I had been out several times just for kind of weekend excursions. 2 Okay, great. So 1971, what are some of your first memories of Las Vegas? Well, the memories of Las Vegas, I stayed in a little motel called the Holiday Motel, which is on Las Vegas Boulevard just north of Sahara. In fact, I think it's still there today. It's not the same name on it. But I stayed there and I remember it cost me seven dollars a night except on the weekends and they wanted to raise it to nine. Every week I'd have a fight with the manager, who turned out to be a good friend of mine, whether I was going to pay seven or nine dollars a night. So that was one of my early memories. The dealership that was at 1715 East Fremont and originally had been owned by a fellow by the name of Herb Biddulph, who was a very successful man. He sold it to a couple of gentlemen that are maybe a little bit Mafia connected by the name of Franto and Mazolla and they ran it for two years and it was called American Auto Mart. They virtually ran it into the ground and the doors were about to close. I ended up renegotiating the leases and opening it. Apparently their reputation wasn't too good. I'm driving here down on I think it was Casino Center with a car from my dealership in Washington and I had a dealer plate on it. A police officer stopped me and questioned the dealer plate. I told him what I was doing; that I was in the process of buying the American Auto Mart. He kind of looked at me, shook his head, and said, “Well, good luck,” and got on his motorcycle and drove off. So I kind of got an idea at that time that maybe he was trying to tell me something that I kind of suspected, but he kind of drove it home that I had kind of a can of worms on my hands. How did you turn it around? It was kind of unusual. I bought the—they call it the hard assets. I did not buy the corporation. The financial statements of the corporation showed they had a profit the year before of like fifteen hundred dollars. So when I got ready to open, Franto told me, he said, 3 “Why don't you buy the corporation?” I said, “Well, why would I want to do that?” He said, “Well, because we had a big tax loss carry forward.” They lost a hundred and 50, $60,000 the year before. I said, “Well, that can't be; I've got this financial statement that shows you just barely in the black.” He looked at me and laughed and he said, “Oh, Marsh, that's the one we sent to the bank; that's not the real financial statement.” So with that, my heart kind of jumped up in my throat and I thought my god, what have you gotten yourself into here? So you just purchased the hard assets and stuck with that decision? Yes, because I didn't want the liability of the corporation and I'm sure there was a lot of it. Okay. So did you find that doing business here was completely different from Longview or other places? Yeah. Even in those days it was much more restrictive. The licensing and so forth was much more difficult than it had been up there and it is much more difficult today. I thought it was going to be the opposite. No, no. This is one of the—even today to get a dealer's license it takes forever, extensive background checks and so forth. And even in those days it was much more difficult than what I was used to. And it's probably because of our reputation? I think it's just because Las Vegas was a bigger town. They had probably more scams operating here and they were more protective. I remember when I went down to get the license they wanted a reference. I said, well, I'm here; I'm a thousand miles away. They said, well, who do you know up there we can call? So I said, well, the police chief up there is a friend of mine. His name was Chief White. So we got on the phone and called him. The officer that was doing the investigation said, “We've got a fellow down here by the name of 4 Jim Marsh here. Do you know him?” Chief White said, “Oh, yeah, we know him.” He said, “So what can you tell us about him?” He said, “Oh, we ran him out of town, so we don't want anything to do with him; I'd put the cuffs on him quick.” So I'm sitting there listening to all this and he's throwing me under the bus. Finally after a few minutes he got to laughing and this, that and the other. So it turned out to be, thank goodness, a big practical joke. It was kind of cute. Great, great. Tell me what the entertainment was like here in the early seventies, the Strip, the nightlife, downtown and on the Strip. Well, the Strip, of course, didn't have the mega hotels they do today. The Sands and the Dunes and some of those, the Riviera, the Sahara—they're all nice hotels at that time. They had the bigL name entertainers out there. The Sahara had their Casbar Lounge. The entertainers, for nothing that you could watch, ended up being big stars, the Mary Kaye Trio for one, which I happen to remember. A lot of the other names elude me right now. But you could just sit in the lounge and these entertainers would rotate throughout the night. The dinner shows were just exactly that. They were like nine dollars, ten dollars, twelve dollars and you not only got a show, but you got two drinks and they served you dinner. They haven't served dinner shows for probably thirty years since then. One of the fellows at this dealership that I bought that came to work for me is a fellow by the name of Jim Rossi. Jim Rossi worked for me until he was 92 years old, which was about three years ago. When I first came to town, Jimmy was—I would say his family, let me put it this way, knew their way around pretty well and I think they maybe had a few underworld connections. I think Jimmy knew every pit boss, every valet parker in town. There wasn't anyplace that Jimmy couldn't go that they didn't know him and he got 5 firstEclass treatment. I think for the first month I think I went out to dinner with Jimmy two or three times a week, and his wife, and I don't think Jimmy ever spent a dime for a meal. He had connections all over town. Is he still here? He's still here. Does he still have a good memory? He has a good memory. He has a good memory. Jimmy was kind of a legend around town and to this day still is. We would love to talk to him. Yeah. We'll see if we can. Great. That sounds wonderful. Tell me about the business community. What kinds of organizations did you join in the beginning? Well, I was here for about two years and I felt like a fish out of water. I really didn't feel like I fit in with the community. I don't think that's unusual when people come to Las Vegas. But after two years, things kind of started to meld and I started to get involved. I belonged to the Chamber of Commerce. I ran for political office in 76. That was the year there wasn't one Republican elected from Clark County. It was right after Watergate. So my political career was rather short lived. The political community then, like you go back on the pictures of the members of the board of the Chamber of Commerce and you knew everybody. They were the Harley Harmons of the world, the Ed Fikes, Berlin Millers, Mahlon Gates from the Test Site. I don't have the list right now, but every person that was on those boards and committees you knew 6 them pretty much on a firsti name basis. The town has changed so much that today it is mostly corporate. You don't find very many private business owners on that chamber board like you used to. Was Howard Hughes very influential during those early years that you were here? Howard Hughes had just left town before I got here. I never had any direct contact with him or this, that and the other. I knew several people that were very close to Howard. They all had nothing but great respect for Howard Hughes. The stories that they told and so forth...this gentleman had a mind like a steel trap and he had some idiosyncrasies, but I guess we all do. One of the gentlemen that I know, Brooks, Bob Brooks, he knew Howard Hughes very well from Beverly Hills. Bob Brooks tells this story. In fact, I think they roomed together years ago. Howard Hughes never carried any money. And Bob how do I want to say it was the Brown Derby in Beverly Hills and Howard came in one night for dinner. And Bob had I think it was a RollsDRoyce or PierceDArrow, expensive car. Howard Hughes said, “I want to buy that car from you.” So they negotiated a price. Howard didn't pay for it. He said, "I'll have a check for you from Hughes Tool." In a week or two, here comes a check from Hughes Tool. But Howard never carried any money with him to speak of. Like I say, I always had a great deal of respect for Howard Hughes. Where did you live, what part of the city? I lived off what they call Vegas Verdes in a little starter house out there. I'm still in today. It's between West Sahara and West Oakey, just behind the Spanish Oaks. The neighborhood has kind of gone down from what it was when I first came here. But to me it's still a very convenient location, so I stay there. So is it convenient for the other location of your business in Centennial Hills? 7 It's centrally located and I spend most of my time out at Centennial Hills, but I also have the Skyline Casino in Henderson. So my house is about halfway between. And then this office is also about halfway between and this used to be a McDonalds restaurant here. In fact, where you're sitting is the drivel iin and that was the pickLup window right there. What I did when I bought the building, I just enclosed this and made it into my office. Wow. I want to know more about the different areas of the city. Were you familiar at all with the John S. Park area? No. Scotch 80s? I am familiar with Scotch 80s. What was the reputation of those areas, an area like that at the time? Well, the Scotch 80s was a very upscale neighborhood and to probably a lesser extent still is today. But Scotch 80s and Rancho Circle were probably the two elite areas here in town. Rancho Circle was developed by a fellow by the name of Bob Kaltenbom. Have you come across that name? Ah, yes. Yes. And Bob was a friend of mine. He married Pop Simon's widow. I didn't know that. Yeah. I think her name was Peggy. Bob was a big man. I think he had a crippled leg if I remember right. He always walked with a limp. But we're going to lunch one day and they're just breaking ground on the Fashion Show. We went out to the Sands for lunch. Bob looked over and he said, “You know, it just shows you how sometimes a guy can be so wrong.” He says, “That 40 acres where the Fashion Show is,” he says, “I owned that at one 8 time.” This may not be completely accurate, but it's going to be close. He said it was in an estate and it was left to the daughter, I think, or the son in the estate and they put it up for sale and my partner and myself bought it for $ 10,000 and we got wind that her brother was going to try to crack the estate, try to challenge the estate, so we thought what we’d do is just go ahead and turn a quick profit. So he says we sold that 40 acres for I think it was 12 or 14 thousand. He says we made—I forget—two or $4,000. He said we thought we were just the smartest guys in town. He said, “Boy, does that show you how dumb we were, huh?” Oh, that’s a great story. Kaltenborn also developed the Huntridge area down there, among other things. So that’s right on the other side of John S. Park. Is it? Yes. How did you get involved in the gaming industry? I've always liked rural Nevada. There was a fellow here in town I knew by the name of Jim Grobin and Jim was a very colorful individual. He used to have like a little shop down there by the Showboat hotel and I got to know Jim. He ended up in Goldfield, Nevada. He had a bar up there by the name of the Santa Fe Saloon. When I would travel up there, I would always stop in and see Jim and his cronies. One day about 1976D77, Jim called and he says, “I need some help.” He says, “The sheriff pulled my liquor license off the wall and I'm out of money.” He says, “I need somebody to buy this.” He said, “I'll get the liquor license back.” But he said, “I need to have somebody buy it and then I'll lease it back from them when I get my liquor license back.” So I bought the Santa Fe Saloon and the twenty lots that surround it for I think it was $12,500. First, I leased it out to a couple. Then when they left I decided to operate it myself. 9 So I got a gaming license there. That was my first experience in the gaming business. I still have it today as one of the places that Mike O'Callaghan used to hang out when he was the governor. But then the other thing was I bought an antique slot machine one time and I decided I wanted to put it in the dealership right over there on Eastern. I didn't know you couldn't have a slot machine in a dealership. So I just put in my application and I had to go in front of the county commission and the Gaming Control Board. To have one slot machine in your business? UhChuh. Lo and behold, I hired Louis Wiener—does that name ring a bell? Yes, the attorney. —to be my attorney. We went in front of the county commission and their eyes kind of bugged out and they finally say, well, okay, we’re going to okay your license. So I got a gaming license. They said, now, you've got to restrict it to antique machines. I said okay. So I was the only gaming license in a dealership in the world for 25 years to have a gaming license in a newDcar dealership. I no more could do it today than fly. So was Goldfield the first gaming license? Goldfield was the first one and the dealership was the second one. So how difficult was it at that time to get that first gaming license in Goldfield? It wasn't all that difficult. As you know, there is two different types of licenses, restricted and unrestricted. The restricted is the one where they limit you to fifteen machines or less. It's getting more difficult today. But at that time as long as you had a clean record and the financial wherewithal to justify it, you could usually get a gaming license. So why is it more difficult today? 10 Because of the Dotty's regulations that they put into effect. I'm opening a bar in Goldfield that does not comply with new regulations and I was the first one to apply for a variance and receive the variance since those Dotty's regulations went into effect. Wow. Okay. Tell me about Belmont. Belmont is a little old mining town that was started back in the 1860s and originally it was the county seat of Nye County. Here again, early in the thirties National Geographic Magazine had a story about the other Nevada and on the cover of that was a picture of a lady who was probably in her mid to late seventies, maybe eighties by the name of Rose Walter. She was the lone resident of Belmont, Nevada. My curiosity was tweaked, so one weekend I drove up to Belmont. And where she lived was some old stone house that was the headquarters for the Combination Mining Company. I just knocked on the door and introduced myself. We had a little conversation. She said, “Would you like to come in and have a cup of coffee?” And I did. So I got acquainted with Rose. In 1974,1 think it was, we were out of gas. If you remember right, you couldn't get gas. The lines, uhDhuh. I had stopped up to see her one day, one weekend. She said, “Jimmy, I've got this old Ford truck and it's just using too much gas.” She said, “I need one of those little Datsun trucks.” At that time Datsun was the only manufacturer that had the little, mini trucks. I said, “Well, Rose, I've got one on the lot.” Then she says, “Well, I can make payments, but I don't have enough money for the down payment.” So I said, “Well, Rose, you've got some lots here in town.” She says, “Yeah.” I said, “Well, maybe we can trade in a lot for the down payment on that truck.” So she got out this map of the lots in Belmont and she put it on her kitchen 11 table. I said, “How about this lot here?” So she said, “That's fine.” So she deeded me that lot and I made the $700 down payment so she could get this Datsun truck. So that's kind of how I got started in Belmont. Now, she was the lone person living in the Belmont area? She was the lone person living in Belmont at that time, year round, uhDhuh. And so it has grown since that point? Well, I call it Poor Man's Mount Charleston. Yes, it has grown. There are probably 25 or 30 residents up there now. Some of the people live in houses that originally were there. Some of them have built new places. Most of them have built new places. But the thing about Belmont as opposed to Mount Charleston, nobody is close to anybody. Rather than having a neighbor right next door to you, your neighbor maybe is two or 300 yards away. So each place kind of has its own personality and so forth. Being that it's between seven and 8,000 feet elevation, it's much cooler in the summertime up there. I talked to my brother. He called this morning. He spends the summers up there. They actually had a freeze last night. But that's how I got my involvement in Belmont. And you built a church there? I built a church there. Originally there was a Catholic church. Before Belmont fell into disrepair. Manhattan, Nevada is the next canyon over. It's about 12 miles away. The residents of Manhattan came over and dismembered the church in Belmont and took it to Manhattan and reconstructed it there. That church to this day is still there. But Belmont didn't have a church. So I got this piece of property there that I had bought at a county sale. I went over and I took the measurements off that original church and had it rebuilt there in Belmont. It's been very well received. Until recently when the pastor got very sick there was 12 a traveling pastor. Ken Curtis did services twice a month, had a lot of marriages there, a lot of weddings, some funerals. But it's served a purpose very well. What gave you that idea? Well, I just thought the little town needed a church. For it to be a successful town, you need a church and a bar. That's very good. Yes. The town has a bar, so I just added the church. That's great. I love it. Why the interest in rural Nevada? I don't know. Living in Las Vegas. Yeah. I just enjoyed getting out. I enjoy Nevada history. I guess I'm fascinated by it. I was probably born a hundred years too late. I was probably a miner in a previous life. Right. What kinds of minerals did they mine in the Belmont area? It was primarily silver. You own a place here on Boulder Highway? Skyline Casino. And how long have you had that one? It will be nine years next month. What is the story behind that? Well, it was a local casino. It was owned by John Kish. John was a very philanthropic person here, particularly in the Henderson area, very active in the Boys and Girls Club. His father had owned it originally and prior to that it was a bar. It's probably 40 years, 45 years old and it started off as a bar. It was successful. They kept expanding on it, expanding on it. 13 And John Kish talked on and off about selling the bar. Every time he'd get close to it, he decided not. It was kind of his baby and he really didn't need the money. One day I was talking with one of my broker friends. I'm trying to think who it was. But anyway, he said I've got the Skyline listed. David Atwell. I don't know if you know David or not, but he's a broker here in town. So anyway, it was probably the easiest deal that you've ever seen. He said, “Let's go out and talk to John.” We got in the car. It was he and a fellow by the name of Guy Deiro, who is also a broker. So we got in the car and went out and talked to John. I had known John before. He showed me through the place. Told me what he wanted for it. We negotiated for a few minutes. Shook hands on it. Had his attorney draw up the agreement. The next day we signed it. Six months later I took over, the first of July. Probably the quickest deal, easiest deal, casino property that has ever happened in the state of Nevada. Like I say, the agreement that was drawn was fair. I got licensed in six months for that, which was record time. Got financed on it, which Selma Bartlett—I don't know if you remember Selma Bartlett. Oh, yes. She handled the financing on it. Like I say, it went very, very well. It's been a good investment for me. We just spent about eight, 900,000 renovating it. It looks beautiful. Great. I want to see that because when I saw the Skyline, I just couldn't picture the Skyline. Yeah. It's primarily locals. We have about 400 machines, a great restaurant, music on the weekends. We have the Dummkopfs. Remember the Dummkopfs, Claytee? It was a German band that played up at Mount Charleston for years. They used to be with Mickey Finn. They used to play with Mickey Finn when he played here in town. So like I say, it's kind of a locals' place. 14 Is John Kish still in Henderson? No. John Kish unfortunately died. I said, “John, why you want to sell this?” He said, “Well, I want to retire.” John was five years younger than I am. It didn't make sense for me to be buying it if he's going to retire. But John was a very heavy smoker. I've never seen anybody chain smoke as much he did. Obviously it got to him prematurely. But I think maybe he knew it was going to get to him and decided it was time to get out. The reason I'm asking is because I'm helping several entities in the Henderson area. The Henderson Historical Society and the Henderson Libraries, they're doing an oral history project of Henderson. So I'm helping whenever I hear a Henderson name that I know should be interviewed. His partner, his name is Jack—I forget what Jack's name is. But he's still around and I could get it for you. He's probably one you might want to interview, very interesting guy. Fantastic. So I'm helping them learn how to do oral interviews, the whole thing. Super. So we're looking forward to that being a wonderful project for them. In an interview that you did—let me see if I can find it. You did an interview and you said something about you must have had brain damage when you made a certain investment. And I thought that was a little funny. Let me see if I can find it. Probably the Longstreet. I think that was it. So why did you think that was a bad investment? Well, I started the Nevada Auto Auction here in 1987 out on Las Vegas Boulevard South. I had it for five years and it was very successful. I sold out to a couple of gentleman in the car business and I took the money and I built what they call the Longstreet Casino. It's right on 15 the way to Death Valley. It was kind of a dream of mine to do that because any point there's a CalifomiaDNevada border there's usually a casino close to it. So this is o