Our morning (and Denise's birthday) began with a VIP tour of the South Lake Tahoe museum, the museum was closed to everyone but us. If you look at the picture with the gloves you will see why.
In the museum we learned about the history of the area, from indigenous people to logging to gambling.
We continued on to Virginia City, Nevada, an old mining town. In the 1800s Virginia City was the most important city between San Francisco and Denver, and made millionaires out of poor miners.
Mark Twain worked as journalist for the Territorial Enterprise, whose goal was to pique the citizens of Virginia City's interest about their local news. Mark Twain will elaborate, "to find a petrified man, or break a stranger's leg, or cave an imaginary mine, or discover some dead Indians in a Gold Hill tunnel, or massacre a family at Dutch Nick's, were feats and calamities that we never hesitated about devising when the public needed matters of thrilling interest for breakfast. The seemingly tranquil Enterprise office was a ghastly factory of slaughter, mutilation and general destruction in those days".
Saint Mary's in the Mountains is a beautiful church, inside and out. It was built in 1868, burned in a devastating fire in 1875, and then rebuilt in 1876.
The small museum located below the church is way too full of things to looks at; newspaper articles, art, church paraphernalia, historical documents, and docents who will not stop teaching you about their city until you walk backwards towards the door, nodding and smiling, feeling behind you for the door handle and a pause in a sentence to sprint outside.
The Storey County Courthouse was built in 1876, and continues to serve its original function to this day.
It wouldn't be a trip to old city without exploring the local cemetery, or at least this is what Denise and I thought as the men waited in the car. This cemetery was found to be very disorganized, and not very well maintained (although they are trying to restore it). Many of the tombstones have been erased by years of exposure to the elements.
This one caught our eye, it is not too often you see a tombstone that says 'murdered' on it. Denise later discovered that the man was killed by a local, who was later tried and hung.
Fred and I did not realize that a day in Nevada would not be complete without going to the Nugget for an Awful Awful (a huge hamburger that comes on top of an inedible amount of french fries). We are learning...
I got the fried calamari sandwich, and we were all happy with our choices. And oh-so-full afterwards.
A night at the Haerrs would not be complete without a game of Scrabble.
And with all of this I will say HAPPY 51st BIRTHDAY DENISE!!
(Pretty suspicious winning on your birthday. It is almost like we let you win...)