Free entrance to Clark County Museum Friday to celebrate Nevada statehood

The Clark County Museum is admitting visitors for free Friday in celebration of Nevada’s 150th birthday as a state.

On March 21, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed legislation later approved by Congress allowing the Nevada territory to draft its own constitution. It was officially admitted to the Union on Oct. 31, 1864.

The northern reaches of Nevada may have been admitted that year, but Clark County and the Las Vegas Valley didn’t join the state until 1867. They were carved out of Arizona territory.

The Clark County Museum will display a new exhibit called “Welcome to Las Vegas, Arizona,” a photo story of what Sin City would look like if it were still a small town in northwest Arizona. Visitors get a free brochure called “Las Vegas, Arizona-Where Adventure is Waiting.”

“The Las Vegas Valley we know today would be a dramatically different place if Clark County hadn’t become part of the Silver State,” said museum director Mark Hall-Patton.

Museum hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., seven days a week.

Contact reporter Steven Slivka at 702-383-0381 or at Follow @StevenSlivka on Twitter.