My husband and I recently went home to visit our families for the holidays. Home for us is Northern California, in the foothills just outside of Sacramento. It had been a very long time since we’d been home and we were excited to get back to our old stomping grounds. While we were home visiting, Nick’s parents wanted to take a day trip to Virginia City, NV.
Virginia City History
Neither of us had ever even heard of Virginia City prior to our trip that day. Weird, considering that it’s only a couple of hours from Sacramento just over the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. For those who are like us and have no idea what this place is all about, Virginia City is boom town that sprang up in 1859, when the Comstock Lode was discovered by Peter O’Riley and Patrick McLaughlin. The Comstock Lode was the first major silver deposit discovered in the United States.
The town is built into the eastern side of Mount Davidson and sits at 6,200 feet above sea level. It has an incredibly rustic beauty that reminded me of the quintessential wild west. The main drag is quaint and very well preserved to maintain the 19th century rustic construction. There are pubs and shops that are there to cater to the tourists that this town attracts, which is the basis of the town’s economy in the 21st century.
The Bucket of Blood Saloon is one of the more famous saloons in the city. While we did not eat there or buy a drink, we did take a look around. There is a huge window at the back of the building that overlooks the valley below Mount Davidson. It’s a really nice view to enjoy over a pint.
The Silver Queen Hotel & Wedding Chapel is another of the more popular attractions, featuring a picture of a woman whose dress is made entirely of silver dollars.
The Silver Terrace Cemetery is another and has been featured on Ghost Hunters as one of the most haunted places in America. As with any proper old town, there are definitely ghost tours that you can take in the evening.
Since Virginia City was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1961, there is a pretty large list of Museums that you can visit there. There too many to go over in detail, so I’ve provided a link here for your convenience.
We found Virginia City totally enchanting and will definitely take another trip up there when we return home. It was a throwback to the way things used to be in the 1800’s and is as close as we’ve gotten to the wild west. Which is saying something, considering that I’ve lived in Arizona and been to Tombstone :-).