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The History of the Washoe Club

“A run through the elegant rooms” was offered by the paper on June 4:

. . .The situation is most desirable, being on “B” Street, between Taylor and Union, and a few doors north of the Court House. The front is adorned with a balcony, from which the magnificent scenery to the east of the city is visible. This outlook is unsurpassed by any in the land. The eye ranges over the busy part of the city, the hills to the east, the Sugarloaf, the Valley of the Carson, the Como Range, and on till its reach is lost in the distance. Upon the background of the picture, the Twenty-six mile Desert, 65 miles away, appears as a brown spot, and the Humboldts, 150 miles distant, raise their bold broad brows, snow-covered, till they seem to mix with heaven’s blue arch and fade away to the sky. The faint outline of the Forty-mile Desert, so terrible in early days as the abode of dusty death, is just caught as it sinks, like the dip of ocean water, behind the intervening ranges.

The approaches to the rooms are easy and elegant. The lower hall is ample and well lighted. Toward the western and the stairway rises very gradually, taking 32 steps to gain the elevation of the second story. The hall above is also ample, well lighted, and affords easy access to each of the rooms. The stairs and upper hall are elegantly carpeted with body Brussels. The front part of the second story is occupied by the parlor and reading-room.

The parlor is 27×24 feet. The carpet is of body Brussels of elegant make and extra quality. The same pattern extends through the reading and billiard-rooms. All the carpets were selected for the Club by Mr. Rogers, President of the Union Club of San Francisco, who has certainly displayed superior taste in the selections made.

The mantle is of the finest Italian marble and adorned with beautiful bronze statuettes, the one in the center bearing an elegant clock, those at either hand representing Shakespeare and Tasso, respectively. Above the mantle is placed and elegant and costly French plate glass mirror. The walls are finished with China glaze and ornamented with distinguished works of art, and conspicuous among them were noticeable the two storm scenes by French, the one representing “Broad River Falls,” North Carolina, the other “Haymaking,” and each having a storm done to nature for a background. These elegant paintings were purchased at the recent art sale in this city. The windows are of fine plate glass and the furniture upholstered, the covering blending and harmonizing beautifully with the carpet.

The general description above given to the parlor applies equally well to the reading room. This room is 19×24 feet, and is to the left of the parlor. Here are to be found all the latest papers and periodicals for perusal. The paintings on the walls are also very fine and include a “Summer Scene in Orange County, New York” and Zang’s famous “Winter Scene.”

The chandeliers, both here in the parlor, are of elegant pattern, beautifully gilt and the finest ever brought to Virginia City. Large sliding doors connect this room with the parlor, as the two are fitted up en suite.

The billiard-room is carpeted with the same body Brussels as the parlor and reading-room.

It contains two elegant tables manufactured by Strahle & Co. with Delaney’s patent wire and rubber cushions and slate beds. Here everything is of the same style of elegance as prevails throughout the entire establishment. Even patent counters are introduced, thus doing away with the necessity of stretching wires across the room. This room is to the right as the upper hall is gained and communicates by sliding doors with the parlor.

The wine and card-rooms are to the left of the upper hall and communicate with the reading-room. These are richly and tastefully furnished and contain everything which can contribute to the comfort and enjoyment of those who frequent them. These rooms are respectively 14×17 and 14×14 feet. The card-room is back of the library, and the wine and lunch-room in the rear of the card-room. The sideboard in the latter is of black walnut, elegantly and elaborately carved. Next to it is a sink of the same material and made to correspond therewith. The carpets in both rooms are of the same pattern and differ in figure only from those in the other rooms. The chandeliers in these rooms are most elegant and covered with steel plate, which is polished like silver.

The store-room is on the lower floor, where all the supplies are kept. The whole is under the immediate supervision of the Assistant Secretary, W.C. Brown. All supplies are charged to him. When anything is needed by the bar-tender upstairs, it is charged to the sideboard. Members partaking thereof or engaging in billiards, hand to the bar-tender a card prepared for the purpose, which is filled out with the name, article and amount. No money is used by the members. Their accounts are all kept and charged up and kept with their monthly dues. It is the duty of the Assistant Secretary to keep all these accounts, as well as to attend to their collection.

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