Pioche is an unincorporated town in Lincoln County, Nevada, United States, approximately 180 miles (290 km) northeast of Las Vegas. U.S. Route 93 is the main route to Pioche and bypasses the town center just to the east, with Nevada State Route 321 and Nevada State Route 322 providing direct access. Its elevation is 6,060 feet (1,850 m) above sea level. Pioche is the county seat of Lincoln County. Pioche is named after François Louis Alfred Pioche, a San Francisco financier and land speculator originally from France. The town's population was 1,002 at the 2010 census.
The first modern settlement of the area occurred in 1864 with the opening of a silver mine. The settlers abandoned the area when local Indian tribes launched a series of raids and massacres. Recolonization was launched in 1868, after the Indian raids were stopped and François Pioche bought the town in 1869. By the early 1870s, Pioche had grown larger, to become one of the most important silver-mining towns in Nevada. Because of the town's remoteness which had earlier allowed the Indian raids to occur, Pioche had a reputation for being one of the roughest towns in the Old West.
Due mostly to confusion over the exact location of mining claims, mine owners finally resorted to hiring guards.