I've written here a little about how difficult it can be to find much about Las Vegas history. Well, I will whine no more. Las Vegas now has a research library, part of the Nevada State Museum, which recently re-opened at the Springs Preserve. (If anyone out there ever visits Vegas, I highly recommend going to the Springs Preserve, which is sort of a natural history museum and has extensive grounds and gardens. It's easy to get to and gives you a glimpse of a different Vegas.) I spent the last two Fridays there, looking at old photos and high school yearbooks, reading newspaper clippings and school guides for parents and historic preservation district applications.
It's always interesting to me to see who else uses a research library, besides an eccentric novelist. On my first visit a man was reading about a political scandal long ago in North Las Vegas. Later there was a woman looking at obituaries, perhaps doing geneological research. Then a man looking for the early history of Red Rock Canyon. Finally a group of high school students came in, researching a project on Helen J. Stewart, who was one half of the first couple to settle here in the late 1800s. The library is only open 3 days a week (Friday-Monday) so far, but it seems to be doing very well. And I plan on making many return visits.