The restoration of these towns began decades ago, and the state of Montana recently purchased both Virginia City and Nevada City so that the preservation can continue.
Some interesting things to do in Virginia City include:
Heritage Days & Victorian Ball: a celebration of the Victorian era held in August. Events include a Grand Ball where guests attend in period costume. Classes on customs and the dances will be provided the afternoon of the Ball.
Opera House: the Virginia City Players' variety productions in the style of 19th-century entertainment amuse and delight visitors. Virginia City offers the oldest continuously operating summer stock theater west of the Mississippi. Check with the Chamber of Commerce for a schedule of shows.
Brewery Follies: relax with a libation at Montana's first brewery, the H. S. Gilbert Brewery, and enjoy a performance of the Brewery Follies Players.
Museums, shops, accommodations; in Virginia City, you can shop, dine and sleep without leaving the atmosphere of the 1860s. Dine in the Wells Fargo Coffee House or the Star Bakery and bend an elbow in the Bale of Hay Saloon or Gilbert's Brewery. Modern, overnight accommodations in a charming, 19th-century atmosphere are available. You will find fascinating nuggets of history and memories to treasure.
Alder Gulch Short Line: take the train to Nevada City on an authentic narrow-gauge railroad. Travel between the two mining camps on the Alder Gulch Short Line Railroad. At the Nevada City end of the line, visit the Alder Gulch Short Line Steam Railroad Museum with its collection of equipment and stock from railroading's gold rush era.
Virginia City was born with the discovery of gold in Alder Gulch in 1863. A 'boom town' of the post Civil War era, Virginia City served as the Montana Territorial Capital for 10 years, until the gold ran out. Just a mile away lies Nevada City, a western town created from a collection of buildings from other ghost towns. Both towns have been largely restored and preserved as they once stood; living examples of the real Old West. One hundred fifty buildings have been certified authentic by the Montana Historical Society. Original buildings, dating from the Territorial days, are filled with merchandise and implements used when gold camps flourished in the West. Boardwalks, mechanical music machines, a penny arcade, antique automobiles and even a two-story outhouse add to the Old West atmosphere.
The majestic Madison River Valley, just west of Virginia City, features some of the world's finest trout streams, as well as a beautiful mountain backdrop.
Elevation: 5,882 feet
Cities near Virginia City Montana