Lost City Museum: Uncovering Native American Culture

If you are a history buff and in search of some cultural adventure, then the Lost City Museum in Nevada should be on your list. This prehistoric site will take you back in history and allow you to get to know Sin City’s first residents from AD 200 to AD 1200. What can you learn when you visit the Lost City Museum? Let’s help you explore a slew of historic architecture and culture that bridges the past and the present culture of Nevada.

About Lost City Museum

Originally referred to as the Boulder Dam Park Museum, the Lost City Museum was founded in 1935 through the efforts of the Civilian Conservation Corps. Afterward, the creation of the museum was turned over to the National Park Service, which manages artifacts uncovered from different archeological sites that were previously flooded following the formation of the Lake Mead. 

Before the completion of the Boulder Dam, Governor James Scrugham asked notable archeologist M.R. Harrington who worked with the Museum of the American Indian, to excavate the site and recover essential artifacts. The excavations lasted for 14 years, and it was during these heightened activities that the local press dubbed the area as the “Lost City.” Today, that parcel of land is turned over to the Nevada state and is now known as the Lost City Museum. 

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the museum now boasts of three exhibition galleries, a library, a theatre, and a souvenir shop. It also has outdoor exhibits that would help you reimagine the life of the area’s first inhabitants. 

What To See in Lost City Museum

When exploring the Lost City that used to be the homes of Native Americans, makes sure to take the time to appreciate the handmade pots, intricate jewelry, and elaborate basketry. 

Guests should not miss the Pueblo cluster. These clusters of the home occupy the very foundations of the quarried archeological site. It would surely give you a vantage point of how Nevada’s Ancestral Puebloans lived their life around 300 BC. 

Note that the museum itself has preserved the same structure and architecture that were first built by the Civilian Conservation Corps. 

Other things that you can see while you are here are the reconstructed pit house, petroglyphs, gardens, centuries-old farming equipment. 

What To Do in Lost City Museum

Explore the Southern Nevada: Landscapes of Change

This gallery showcases several displays. It shows the chronological transition of Southern Nevada’s climate, technology, plants and animals, and even its residents. 

Appreciate the Joseph F. and Kathryn A. Perkins Collection

Among those that you shouldn’t miss when you visit the Lost City Museum is the impressive collection of historical and contemporary Native American pottery and basketry. Some of the collections here originated from the Nevada State Historical Society, as requested by the donors. 

Experience the Fey Perking Gallery

This gallery is the biggest of all the exhibition halls, as its main centerpiece is the very archeological site that was initially dug back in the 1930s. Note that the exhibition transitions in reverse. The idea is to show that as the excavation proceeds, it takes you back in time. In the past when the Lost City was still full of life. 

Accept the Challenge at the Uncovering the Past: Archeology of Lost City

After exploring the Perkins Gallery, head on to the Uncovering the Past: Archeology of Lost City. Make sure to see the display cases from left to right, so it would be easier to understand how the Lost City revealed itself to its discoverers. From time to time, this gallery displays several “What Is It” case. It aims to test visitors if they can determine and pinpoint puzzling and hard-to-find objects. 

Know Before You Go

  • The Lost City Museum is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • They don’t have operations every Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day.
  • Admission is free for museum members and children 18 years old and below. Adults and seniors pay $5. If you would like to become a museum member, click here.
  • For more information about their events and feature exhibits, you can check out their site: https://www.lostcitymuseum.org.

Other museums you can visit in Nevada include Zak Bagans’ The Haunted Museum, National Atomic Museum, and The Mob Museum.

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