Boomtown Saloons: Archaeology And History In Virginia City

Boomtown Saloons: Archaeology And History In Virginia City
Author: Kelly J. Dixon
Language English
Pages: 256
ISBN10: 0874177030
Genre: History
Goodreads Rating: 4.15
ISBN13: 9780874177039
Published: December 1st 2006 by University of Nevada Press

"The image of Old West saloons as sites of violence and raucous entertainment has been perpetuated by film and legend, but the true story of such establishments is far more complex.

In Boomtown Saloons, archaeologist Kelly J. Dixon recounts the excavation of four historic saloon sites in Nevada's Virginia City, one of the West's most important boomtowns, and shows how the physical traces of this handful of disparate drinking places, affiliated with a range of ethnic and socioeconomic groups, offer a captivating new perspective on everyday life in the mining West." Boomtown Saloons also offers an equally vivid portrait of the modern historical archaeologist who combines time-honored digging, reconstruction, and analysis methods with such cutting-edge technology as DNA analysis of saliva traces on a 150-year-old pipestem and chemical analysis of the residue in discarded condiment bottles. Dixon's sparkling text and thoughtful interpretation of both physical and documentary evidence reveal a hitherto unknown aspect of material life and culture in one of the West's most storied boomtowns and demonstrate the vital, complex social role that the traditional western saloon served in its community.