Is it possible kids think some museums are boring … shhhhh … because they are? Museums are wonderful
places that store, restore and display artifacts crucial to understanding history. Many museums find
creative ways to teach, but there is nothing like a museum that will let you get your hands
Virgin Valley Heritage Museum is considered a tribute to early pioneer settlers of the Virgin Valley.
You can see artifacts from recent to distant history there. What makes this place really special are
the engaging staff members who delight in showing children how things work. Elspeth Kuta, for
example, will show you how to type on an antique typewriter. She will even reach into her secret
drawer of fossils and petrified materials. Oh, sure, you can touch them with your fingers and hold
them in your hands.
If you have never felt cotton before and after it’s carded, you can do that here. Elspeth will even
put some of that cotton on a spinning wheel and tell you a yarn while she spins some from that
cotton. Remember the song, “Pop Goes the Weasel?” There is an actual weasel on display, another tool
for making textiles long ago. A living garden in the courtyard is full of green cotton plants.
Elspeth (and other obliging staff) can fire up the old victrola and show you how vibrations become
beautiful music with the magic of a working 1926 model.
Hold a tortoiseshell, and see a projector used for showing silent movies. Examine Native American
artifacts, antique hospital tools, jewelry, clothing, and actual photographs and drawings of the
people who were likely to have used them.
Rock museum made history as a hospital
The charming rock building located at 35 W. Mesquite Blvd., Mesquite, NV 89027 was originally built
by the National Youth Administration of Nevada in 1941-42. It was intended to be used for a library
and museum. It was home to the Mesquite branch of the Clark County Library for roughly one year.
Unfortunately, the town was in desperate need of medical facilities and the library/museum became
Mesquite’s first hospital. Each family in town donated $35 to help buy the supplies and equipment
needed, a history published on the museum website site. Some of the original hospital equipment is
still there today. It was the only medical facility in the small Nevada town until 1977.
The Boy Scouts used it for a meeting hall and it sat empty for a while. Then, in 1985, the newly
incorporated City of Mesquite reclaimed it. It was destined to be a museum after all.
This thriving Clark County Community continues to grow at a staggering pace. It’s true residents here
keep their eyes on a bright future; but just as many keep their eyes on the past that blazed a rough
and rocky path right up to the present.
Virgin Valley Heritage Museum, A charming rural museum that houses treasures of the recent and distant pasts of the Virgin Valley. Fun hands-on learning activities and demonstrations are available there.