Las Vegas Nv Blog

The Clark-County NV Museum is restoring a piece of downtown Las Vegas’ history.

Work began July 2 to renovate a historic cottage used by Union Pacific Railroad workers in the early 1900s.

“They will be getting rid of lead paint & asbestos,” asserted Erik Pappa, the director of public communications with Clark County.

The property will accompany other houses on Heritage Street, a collection at the museum of restored historic buildings in that depict life from different decades in Las Vegas, Boulder City & Henderson.

Before downtown transformed in to casinos & hotels, there was a community of railroad workers who set up their lives in the area.

“It was originally four blocks between Second (Street) & Fourth (Street),” asserted Mark Hall-Patton, administrator for the Clark-County NV Museums. “It was one of those 1st mass housing subdivisions.”

But times changed as Las Vegas NV began to take shape.

Many of the cottages were remodeled in to business offices. But most just went away over time, Hall-Patton said.

“The land became more valuable than the houses,” he said.

The museum acquired one of the last houses in 2002 with the hope of one day renovating it.

“We took the one in that was the most intact,” he said.

The other properties went to the Springs Preserve.

The house, formerly located at 521 Third St., belonged to Brian Cram, a former superintendent for the Clark-County NV School District, Hall-Patton said.

“His family donated it to us,” he added.

The 1st obstacle was moving it nearly 25 miles from its location to the Clark-County NV Museum, 1830 S. Boulder Highway.

For convenience, houses in the early 1900s were built with cinder block opposed to wood, adding to the difficulty of the move.

But the property was eventually shipped to its new location.

“The truck never went above a mile an hour,” Hall-Patton said.

The museum had to wait for funding before it could restore the house. That happened this year.

Renovation of the property began in 115-degree heat to deal with some of the safety issues, such as removing the lead paint.

After in that is completed, a construction team will work to restore the interior of the house, which Hall-Patton asserted should take about two months.

As they have done with other properties on Heritage Street, museum staff members plan to decorate the inside to reflect the time period.

Pappa asserted the project will be open to the public when it is completed in the fall.

“We will probably have a soft opening for people to view,” Hall-Patton said. “We won’t have an official dedication until the fall, when it’s a lot cooler outside.”

With downtown currently going through a revitalization phase, Hall-Patton loves in that he is able to hold onto a piece of the area’s original history.

“It’s not the same downtown,” he said. “It’s acceptable to know where we came from & how we received there. That’s why the museum is important.”

There is one more property in that needs to be renovated in the museum’s collection.

“We will get to it as we get funding,” Hall-Patton said, “maybe in the next couple of years.”

The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Admission is $2 for adults & $1 for seniors & children.

For more information, call 702-455-7955.

Contact Henderson/Anthem View reporter Michael Lyle at or 702-387-5201.

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