Dr. Galley and M. V. Gillett discovered rich silver-lead ore in the Hot Creek Range of Nye County in 1870, but Tybo did not develop until 1874. By 1876, the population was more than one thousand. A series of fifteen charcoal kilns were built in nearby canyons to help in the smelting process. Mining slowed and by 1881, only one hundred people were left. A new mining revival began in 1916, but faded in 1922. Major mining took place from 1926 to 1937 when the Treadwell-Yukon company built a mill and hired more than two hundred men. The mine produced more than $6.8 million during this period.
After that, Tybo declined and is now a ghost town. Numerous buildings remain and some of the nearby charcoal kilns still exist. The Tybo town site is privately owned with no trespassing allowed. The charcoal kilns are on U.S. Forest Service land. Any removal of artifacts from those sites is a violation of the federal antiquities law.