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Map showing Mercury and nearby Desert Rock airfield

Mercury is a town in Nye County, Nevada, USA, 5 miles north of U.S. Route 95 at a point 65 miles further northwest of Las Vegas. It is situated within the Nevada Test Site and was constructed by the Atomic Energy Commission to house and service the staff of the test site. Today, the site is governed by the United States Department of Energy. As part of the test site, the town is not accessible by the general public. It was named for the mercury mines which flourished in its general vicinity a century before the town itself was established. The current population is unknown.

Mercury began as a military-style encampment, Base Camp Mercury, set up to provide only the most basic facilities for personnel involved at the beginning of operations of the Nevada Test Site in 1950. As the scope of the testing program expanded, so did the amount of personnel required to fulfil the site's mission, and beginning in 1951 a 6.7 million dollar construction project was undertaken to provide adequate individual housing, office and service structures with a civilian town-like design. With the acquisition of a full-service post office in the mid-1950s, Base Camp Mercury was formally re-named Mercury, Nevada.

In the early 1960s, the town population had grown to over 10,000, and further construction work was undertaken to upgrade the permanence of the town's architecture. A school was established, and numerous recreational and shopping facilities were added, including a movie theater, bowling alley, recreation hall, swimming pool and hobby center, as well as a full-care health clinic, library, non-denominational chapel with cadre of chaplains, service station with garage, and bus station. In 1963, the Desert Rock Airstrip was added pending a visit from President John F. Kennedy.

The town thereafter flourished until the 1992 accord was signed by President George H. W. Bush, ending Mercury's reason for being. The population shrank rapidly thereafter, leaving most of the facilities abandoned. A skeletal crew of scientists and military remain in Mercury conducting some limited testing and research. Most of the amenities have been closed and the town is now a shell of its former self, though dining, bar facilities, and a gym remain. The current population is unknown but fluctuates.

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