Ely is a city of 5000 in eastern Nevada.
Brothels have operated in the Ely community
for over 100 years. They did not become legal
until 1959, when the Ely city council passed
an ordinance that restricted the red-light
district to an area on the outskirts of the
city, near the railroad tracks. At one time
the brothels extended three blocks and had
more than 400 working ladies; but in recent
years only the Stardust, Green Lantern, and
Big Four have been active. The Green Lantern
and Big Four closed a couple years ago. The
Stardust was nearly shut down in August 1999
after the city council voted 3-2 to close
down to the brothel. The mayor vetoed the
city council because of the economic benefits
from tourists, customers, and brothel employees.
Today the Stardust is the only brothel
is still open. It is a small house
has more than four women working at
time. It offers a welcoming, laid-back
atmosphere. The owner of the Stardust
Ranch bought the Big Four, but has
to reopen it.