Dayton has rich stories to tell; add your own | NevadaAppeal.com

Dayton has rich stories to tell; add your own

Ruby McFarland
Special to the Appeal

As most of you can read, I love to tell stories. I’ve gotten pretty good at it – and have finally become old enough to have a story to tell.

Sometimes people come to the Dayton Museum and ask: “What’s so special about Dayton?”

I always ask: “Do you want the short or long version?”

For the most part, folks pull up a chair, and a couple of hours later, we are still talking about the Dayton and rest of the Comstock area. There is so much to tell.

Inevitably, the question arises: Which was the first community in Nevada – Genoa or Dayton?

Here’s the answer: Dayton was the earliest permanent Euro-Caucasian settlement in Nevada. There are many documents and diaries to back up that claim.

We are willing to continue running dialogue with the folks who disagree, but we know the truth and are willing to be friendly regarding it.

There are so many people who visit Dayton who have roots in this community.

They may not have lived here for years, but they come seeking validation of their family roots. Last Sunday, a man and wife visited whose last name is Cipriani.

They live in Carson City, but he was born in Dayton. We were looking at the Boy Scout roster of 1933, finding photos of his father and uncle. He said he has many photos he would like to donate to the museum. I was delighted that we would get family photos of people who used to be part of the Dayton population.

Quite frequently, people who have family ties in Dayton want to donate family artifacts to the museum. We are always happy to get any artifacts pertaining to our history, either on loan or through a donation.

There are a few folks who enter the museum who stop, look around and then declare: “I sat right there when I went to school here.” They always have a few stories to tell of their day and the teachers who shaped their education.

The Dayton Museum will always be grateful to have this fine, old 1865 building to call home. It won’t be long before we have the Carson & Colorado Railroad station (depot) to act as another type of museum and visitors center in Old Town Dayton. We are expanding our horizons all the time. Sometimes, we feel we haven’t accomplished much until we look around to see what we have achieved in a short time.

Donations of Dayton-area (Sutro and Como included) memorabilia are special to us, as are “on- loan” items. Of course, cash donations of any amount to an all-volunteer organization add a rich gravy to the potatoes.

The Dayton Museum is on Shady Lane and Logan Street in Old Town Dayton. It’s also the location of the Dayton Chamber office. It is open during the week at random hours and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Check out daytonnvhistory.org. Group tours are available. Call 246-5543, 246-0462 or 246-0441.

The Historical Society of Dayton Valley meets at noon on the third Wednesday of the month at the Dayton Valley Community Center. Visitors are welcome.

• Ruby McFarland is a 17-year resident of Dayton, a board member of the Dayton Historical Society and a docent at the museum.