The Silver State National Peace Officers Museum was located in historic Virginia City, Nevada. The museum was founded in 2007 and opened doors to the public on July 18, 2009. The museum featured one of the largest and finest United States law enforcement memorabilia collections known, all collected by one man as a result of his lifelong love of the law enforcement profession and its history. There was no other like it!
BUILDING A MUSEUM
By 2007, an assembly of working and retired law enforcement officers, most having served together as honor guard members, came together to move that vision forward. By November of 2008, our non-profit status had been approved and the 1876 Storey County Jail in Virginia City had been chosen as the location to become what was then to be the Silver State Peace Officers Museum. Construction began in April of 2009. Modern interior construction was demolished in order to take the jail back to its original glory of 1876.
Then, construction began to build the area into a professional museum with built in galleries, a museum store, and a memorial room dedicated to all Nevada officers who had been killed in the line of duty. We could not have picked a more difficult time to start this project as the economy quickly dropped and unemployment was at an all time high. Funding was just not flowing to the project so old and new friends came together to keep this promise in a spectacular fashion.
The museum payed tribute to the profession for seven years before closing doors for good.
A GRAND OPENING OF ALL GRAND OPENINGS
July 18, 2009, exactly four years to the day after Walt passed away, was the day selected for the grand opening celebration, and what a celebration it was. A police parade, certainly the first in Virginia City and likely the first anywhere in the west for many years, brought law enforcement agencies from all across Nevada and California. Bagpipes, color guards, mounted officers, and motors along with vintage emergency vehicles pulled together to make this a memorable day on the Comstock. The old jail and courthouse was filled with the sounds of bagpipes as ceremonial dedications and introductions took place.
FROM A GRAND OPENING TO AN ANNUAL CELEBRATION
This event became an annual gathering to pay honor to those lost while on duty and to celebrate those continuing to dedicate their lives to community across the nation.