NHS Reno Arch ornaments are here!

Are you looking for a unique holiday gift for this season?

Take a look at the NHS Reno Arch Ornament series. Each ornament is $24.95 and is available now in the Museum Store.

While we are closed this month, we are taking orders over the phone and offering safe and friendly, curb-side service.

One fun fact about the ornaments, they light up!

Reno Arch #1 – 1929-1935
Ornament History

The first Reno Arch with the slogan “The Biggest Little City in the World.”

Reno installed its first arch for the Transcontinental Highways Exposition in 1927 to celebrate the new Lincoln and Victory Highways. The arch was designed by Norman W. Prince, and erected by the J. L. Stuart Company of San Francisco, for $5,500.
The opening dedication celebration on October 23, 1926 included a nighttime Shriners’ parade with Nevada Governor Scrugham lighting the sign, made of 944 white incandescent light bulbs, which read “Reno, Nevada’s Transcontinental Highways Exposition, June 25 – August 1, 1927.”

After the Transcontinental Highways Exposition ended, Reno Mayor Roberts and the city council decided to keep the arch and asked for slogans which included: “Reno: A City of Sunshine with Warm Welcomes for All,” “Reno: The Gateway to Prosperity and Happiness,” “Reno: Nevada’s Silver Lilly,” and “Reno: Where Life’s Worth Living.”A year later the city of Reno sponsored another competition with a $100 prize for the winning slogan. On March 14, 1929 city hall announced the winner – “Reno: The Biggest Little City in the World.” This slogan was used in previous booster campaigns, and it remains unclear why G.A. Burns of Sacrament, California was declared the winner, when others had suggested the same slogan.


Reno Arch #2 – 1935-1963
Ornament History

The Reno Arch goes NEON!

The 1934 to 1963 arch went though a series of quick transformations. Some city bigwigs thought the slogan was passe, small town-ish and too boastful. In 1934, torches on the top were removed, the arch was reinforced, and the slogan removed.
RENO was ablaze in green, using the new lighting miracle – neon.
By popular demand and through the efforts of Councilman William Justi – the slogan, in blue neon letters, returned on June 12, 1935. The Electrical products Company was paid $33.38 a month to install the neon slogan and maintain the arch. In 1940 RENO changed to white neon and the slogan converted to canary yellow neon. Finally, in 1950, the slogan was changed to red neon.
Upon its removal on December 20, 1963, the arch was transported in pieces to the storage yard behind the Ad Art Sign Company at 2369 Dickerson Road.