Illustration of Mammoths & Joshua Tree

Fossil Mammoths of Southern Nevada

Fossil Mammoths of Southern Nevada

Dr. Stephen Rowland, UNLV

Saturday, April 8th, 2017
2:00 PM

Nevada State Museum, Las Vegas
309 S. Valley View Blvd.

April is Paleontology Awareness Month in Nevada, and to celebrate Dr. Stephen Rowland will present a lecture on fossil mammoths. Join us to hear what scientists are learning from the latest research on these animals and what it tells us about life in southern Nevada during the Pleistocene Ice Age.

This program is free with museum membership or paid general admission. Please email or call 702-822-8746 for more information.

Dr. Stephen Rowland

Dr. Stephen Rowland


Dr. Stephen Rowland is a professor in the Department of Geology at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He received his Ph.D. at the University of California, Santa Cruz, in 1978. Professor Rowland’s primary studies are in the areas of paleontology, paleoecology, stratigraphy, and the history of geology.

Nevada's Big Give is March 23rd, 2017

Nevada’s Big Give – Help Us Raise Money for Field Trips & More

This is the first year that Friends of NSMLV have participated in Nevada’s Big Give, and we are excited about their fundraising goals!

Donating During Nevada’s Big Give Will Help Fund:

  • The Friends of NSMLV have a School Bus program. They pay for buses to bring Clark County fourth graders to the museum on field trips. their goal is to pay for 20 trips by the end of 2017. This means about 1280 kids from under-served Clark County schools will visit the museum and participate in activities with the Education Curator.
  • The butterfly and moth collections at NSMLV are remarkable and irreplaceable sources of information about Nevada insects and the world they inhabit.  The friends are working with NSMLV to photograph and catalog 20,000 insects in the museum’s collection.  Computer equipment is needed to store information about the bugs, and upload it to the web for public access.  The Friends’  goal is to buy one refurbished laptop, and two refurbished desktop computers.

Nevada’s Big Give is March 23rd, but you can donate any time you want before then!

You Can Donate Here

Two Deserts One Sky

Two Deserts, One Sky

Join us for the opening of our new exhibit:

Two Deserts, One Sky
A Student Collaboration Between Rajasthan, India and Southern Nevada, U.S.A.

This innovative collaboration was developed to connect students, ages 8-12, in the Mojave Desert of southern Nevada with their peers in the Thar Desert of Rajasthan, India in an effort to promote global environmental education through fine art, photography, and science.

Guided by artist and wildlife biologist Sharon K. Schafer, students experienced project-based learning on a global scale and gained an understanding of, not just the issues being faced in their community, but also of similar issues and concerns around the world.

Schafer and local instructors worked with students on both continents to guide students in documenting the natural history of their region with photographs. The project and resulting photographic mural exhibit is committed to arid land environmental education and dedicated to fostering an understanding between cultures of our shared responsibilities to our fragile planet.

The AFC Flag Expedition Program is a unique program established and operated by the Artists for Conservation Foundation (, making possible the artistic field study and rendering of unique threatened habitats, and rare or endangered species deserving of greater public attention.

Watch out for creepy photobombers.

5 Tips for Museum Selfies

In honor of Museum Selfie Day (01/18/2017), the staff at NSMLV has compiled very serious and helpful tips to make sure you get the most out of your selfies. Museums are stuffy places of great dignity and photos should reflect that time-honored tradition. Museum selfies are a fun way to become part of the story and to share your experiences with your friends. In fact, curators take museum selfies almost every day. We want to see your selfies!

You can celebrate museum selfie day by posting your selfies on social media using the hashtags #museumselfie and #nsmlv. We will repost our favorites on twitter, instagram, or facebook. You can use these tips to help take good selfies.


1. Be aware of your surroundings. Much like HBO programs, some exhibits may be frightening for younger or more sensitive visitors.

Be aware of your surroundings

Be aware of your surroundings


2. Make sure your hair doesn’t match the exhibit. This selfie in front of the showgirl wall didn’t really work out.

Make sure your hair doesn't match the exhibit

Make sure your hair doesn’t match the exhibit

3. Avoid shots that make it look like something is growing out of your head. (Well, unless that’s what you want).

Avoid shots that make it look like something is growing out of your head.

Avoid shots that make it look like something is growing out of your head.

4. Double-check your props. This is especially difficult when dealing with ancient technology. When in doubt, ask a curator.

Double-check your props.

Double-check your props.

5. Watch out for creepy photobombers. They are a real problem in museums. You never know if you’ll get a ghost, mammoth, or curator in your selfies.

Watch out for creepy photobombers.

Watch out for creepy photobombers.


Download the complete infographic here:

The NSMLV Guide to Museum Selfies

The NSMLV Guide to Museum Selfies

Save Your Family History – Digitize Your Family Photos

Crystal Van Dee and Ilana Short, museum curators, will show you how to preserve your family photos for future generations. Participants will learn about different digital formats and ways to record and store digital images.

Admission is $5 at the door and free for Friends of NSMLV.

January 21, 2017
1:00 pm to 2:00 pm
NSMLV Special Events Room

Showgirls, showgirls, showgirls!

Showgirls, showgirls, showgirls!

Showgirls, Showgirls, Showgirls, as in what are they are wearing.

Karan Feder shares her expertise concerning costuming in relation to the elaborate production shows with a special emphasis “Les Folies Bergere.”

Nevada State Museum, 309 South Valley View Blvd.  

Tuesday, January 10th, 2017
11:30 am
Cost for lunch $15.00, cash only please

Please RSVP to Joe Thomson at or 702-656-8738

Snow on the Esslinger Farm, Las Vegas - December 1960

Christmas & Snow in Las Vegas


Proudly hosts an afternoon of Christmas and Snow in Las Vegas.

Join us in sharing memories of historical Christmas in Las Vegas and the rare occasions when it has snowed during the winter months.

Feel free to bring along images or mementos that you would like to include in the conversation

Nevada State Museum, 309 South Valley View Blvd.

Tuesday December 13th


Cost for lunch $15.00, cash only please

Please RSVP to Joe Thomson at or 702-656-8738

Albums from the Greeno Collection on Exhibit

Branding Las Vegas, 1941 – 1958: Highlights from the Greeno Collection

On July 8, 2016, the Nevada State Museum, Las Vegas opened a new exhibit titled Branding Las Vegas, 1941 – 1958: Highlights from the Greeno Collection. The exhibit describes, with artifacts from the recently acquired Richard and Nancy Greeno Collection of Las Vegas memorabilia and photographs from the Museum’s J. Florian Mitchell Collection, how the Las Vegas Strip’s first 13 hotel-casinos branded themselves. These resorts adopted distinctive themes which they expressed in part through colorful logos: a genie, palm trees, and minarets depicted the Dunes’ Middle Eastern theme; the Tropicana’s elaborate fountain hinted at European elegance; while the Stardust’s planet Earth and atomic stars reflected Space-Age modernism. Hotels placed their logos on ashtrays and matchbooks, tableware, thermos bottles, flight bags, souvenirs and giveaways of every description. These items, bought or pilfered by tourists, were carried across the world, spreading the hotel’s advertising and logo image far and wide, and earning Las Vegas the title of Entertainment Capital of the World.


With more than 8,000 items, the Richard and Nancy Greeno Collection of Las Vegas memorabilia is one of the largest such collections in the United States. Representing several decades of collecting, the Greeno Collection includes not only memorabilia and ephemera from all of Las Vegas’ major hotel-casino properties from 1941 to the present, but includes a significant collection of roulette-related artifacts, entertainment memorabilia, and items associated with organized crime.

MPartial mammoth tusk from Tule Springsammoth tusk from Tule Springs

Fossils from Tule Springs on Exhibit

On June 25, 2015 the Nevada State Museum, Las Vegas received fossil specimens from the National Park Services Tule Springs Fossil Bed National Monument from the San Bernardino County Museum in California. The museum is acting as a temporary repository for over 10,000 specimens until the National Park Service can build their own facilities at the new monument located on the north end of Las Vegas Valley.

The museum has an exhibit about the newly formed monument with fossil specimens of Pleistocene mammals such as mammoth teeth and camel bones. These significant fossils tell a story of a wetter environment during the Pleistocene epoch (2.5 million years ago to 11,700 years ago) where herds of mammoths, prehistoric horses, bison, and camels roamed the valley. There is also fossil evidence that this spring fed area was also home to predators such as the American lion, Dire wolf, and Saber-toothed cat, and human beings.

A portion of the Tule Springs exhibit at NSMLV

A portion of the Tule Springs exhibit at NSMLV

Though direct evidence of humans hunting Pleistocene mammals in the Las Vegas Valley has not been found, this question has led to significant excavations by archaeologist and paleontologist in the past and still directs current investigations within the area.

The fossils on display are just a few of the specimens that have been removed from the monument area when it was under the management of the Bureau of Land Management. It is hoped that more of the Tule Springs area fossils will return to Southern Nevada and the Nevada State Museum, Las Vegas is pleased to be able to temporarily house the material until a new facility can be built.

On July 18, 2015 there was an official unveiling of the Tule Springs Fossil Bed National Monument display with over 200 people in attendance.