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Vegas Stripped: Las Vegans work to preserve first integrated casino in US — VIDEO

Deverynn Bryant yearns to bring the Moulin Rouge back to life.

The resort on Bonanza Road was the first racially integrated hotel and casino in the United States. Black performers on the Strip, who were barred from eating or staying at the resorts where they played, made the Moulin Rouge an all-night party spot for the six short months it was open in 1955 before closing in bankruptcy.

Bryant visits the abandoned property often, sitting, listening to music, collecting mementos.

West Las Vegas was headed toward becoming an area to celebrate black culture and black-owned businesses when the Moulin Rouge opened. Its closure stifled that momentum, he says.

“The story of the Moulin Rouge is the story of me, the story of my people.”

Bryant believes restoring the property can start a positive new chapter for black history in Las Vegas.

Vegas Stripped is an Emmy Award-winning series by visual journalist Rachel Aston. Her videos are posted weekly at reviewjournal.com. Contact her at raston@reviewjournal.com. Follow @rookie__rae on Twitter.

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