Free Museum

My first stop in Virginia city was the free museum. With everyday items, clothing, and plenty of newspaper clippings, this museum had everything about the history of Virginia City.

Dr. G.G.Bissell’s Skeleton, used for teaching lessons on the human body and anatomy.

There were glass cases filled with fossils, stuffed “freak lambs”, old newspaper clippings, and even a skeleton. Most of these artifacts came from families that lived in Virginia City.

Fossil collection in the free museum.
Robert Gohn was well known in Virginia City. Hundreds mourned his loss when he passed.

Robert Gohn owned several businesses in Virginia City. He was born and raised there. He became blind in 1920 from a dynamite explosion, but he continued to work. He knew most people by name and could tell when they walked through the door at his bar, ready to serve their favorite drink. When asked about Robert Gohn, Virginia City natives are quick to tell you anything you want to know.

The free museum had everything from newspaper clippings about his death to the exact cup he would drink his whiskey from on display.

A “freak lamb” on display at the free museum.

There are other taxidermy animals on display including a white bear, squirrels, foxes, rabbits, and many more.

This museum is a definite stop when visiting Virginia City. If you want a crash course on the city, the people that founded it, and everything that went on since it became a ghost town. stop here.

The Main Strip

Sidewalk on highway 287 – Virginia City

On highway 287, lies the main strip of Virginia City. With a population under 200 people, this small town sits all within a mile. The main strip has displays, which you can walk a few feet into, to see what a store would have been like in the 1800’s.

On this first trip, I walked into each display on the main strip. One interesting display was the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone Co. Inside was a mannequin using the telephone switchboard.

Cullen looks around the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone Co. display
Mannequin using switchboard inside of the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone Co. display

There are also some tourists spots. For example, there is a theater that puts on summer shows for tourists, a candy shop that displays taffy being made in the window, and even a free museum put together by donations from the citizens of Virginia City and other surrounding towns.

The Opera House in Virginia City, currently playing Sweeney Todd.
A view of the town from the Boot Hill Cemetery