Phillip Callahan’s father, Matthew, came to Nevada in 1863 from England via Sacramento. He operated brickyards in Virginia City and Carson City during the height of the Comstock. The bricks for the Catholic Church and post office in Virginia City came from the Callahan brickyard. As the need for bricks began to wane, Matthew moved his family to Galena in 1884 and operated a dairy farm.
Later in 1890, the family bought the 160-acre Ghiglieri ranch to the north of their ranch. Matthew’s son Phillip bought the Reynolds ranch of 160-acres around 1908. They hauled milk and butter from the farm up the old toll road to sell in Virginia City. Besides dairy, the farm grew wheat, oats, barley, and potatoes. The fruit trees included apples, plums, and pears, plus they gathered chokecherries and elderberries. The ranch had a smokehouse for smoking meat and making sausages.
A neighboring old ranch house from the 1920s. Source: Nevada Historic Society.