Laxalt family patriarch subject of Carson City lecture |

Laxalt family patriarch subject of Carson City lecture

Guy Clifton
Dominique Laxalt, a Basque immigrant who settled in Carson City, is the subject of June’s Frances Humphrey Lecture Series at the Nevada State Museum. Photo courtesy of UNR Special Collections and UNR Center for Basque Studies.

The Laxalt family name has been well known in Nevada for more than 70 years — much of that attributable to Paul Laxalt, the former Nevada governor and U.S. senator, and his late brother, Robert, the celebrated Nevada author.

But their family’s foundation goes back a generation to their father, Dominique Laxalt, who came from the Basque country to seek economic opportunity in America and found it, lost it, and found it again.

Dominique Laxalt is the subject of this month’s Frances Humphrey Lecture Series at the Nevada State Museum in Carson City. The event is scheduled for June 30 from 1 to 2 p.m. at the Nevada State Museum’s South Gallery. The cost is $8 for adults, free for museum members and children 17 and younger.

Lecturer Michael Fischer follows Dominique Laxalt’s life from his upbringing in the foothills of the French Pyrenees to his last days on Minnesota Street in Carson City.

Attendees can learn about Laxalt’s remarkable wife whose own life was filled with numerous hardships and whose determination all her children be educated drove her to work 16- to 18-hour days.

Fischer is a former director of the Nevada Department of Cultural Affairs. He has served several terms on the board of the Western Folklife Center, the group responsible for the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko. A life member of the Douglas County Historical Society, he was both a board member and president of the organization.

Fischer is also a noted Chautauquan, having portrayed historical figures including former Nevada Gov. John Sparks and Carson Valley Pioneer H.L. Dangberg.

Seating is limited; reserve your seat by going to