Welcome to Ballarat, California, population one. Located in the heart of the unforgiving Death Valley, the former mining supply town has been abandoned for nearly 100 years. Were it not for Rock Novak, the town’s only resident, Ballarat would belong to the vultures.
“I’m the caretaker, the mayor, the sheriff, the judge, and the undertaker [of Ballarat],” Novak says in Mickey Todiwala and Monika Delgado’s short documentary, The Mayor of Ballarat. “I like it out here. It’s peaceful, quiet…you do as you want.” Read more: https://www.theatlantic.com/video/index/564557/ballarat/
"The Mayor of Ballarat" was directed by Mickey Todiwala and Monika Delgado. It is part of The Atlantic Selects, an online showcase of short documentaries from independent creators, curated by The Atlantic.