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Virginia City in Storey County, Nevada — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

Piperís Opera House

Comstock Historical Marker No. 10

 

ó12 North B Street, Virginia City, NV ó

 
Piperís Opera House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, August 24, 2009
1. Piperís Opera House Marker
Inscription. Piperís Opera House began as Maguireís Opera House in 1863 when San Francisco theater impresario Thomas Maguire built the establishment, two blocks east of this site on “D” Street between Union and & Taylor Streets. Maguire fell on hard times and sold the opera house to John Piper in 1867. That building burned in the Great Fire of 1875. Piper then rebuilt the second opera house here behind his Corner Saloon, and re-opened on January 28, 1878. Tragedy struck once again when an early morning fire on March 13, 1883, reduced the opera house to a heap of smoldering ruins. Allegedly John Piper, himself, left a cigar burning in his upstairs apartment after closing a show. Piper rebuilt once again and opened the third Opera House on March 6, 1885, this is the building that stands before you today. In addition to hosting the finest entertainment acts in America, Piperís also served as a venue for political rallies, dances, graduation parties and a host of other civic events. Shakespeare was popular at Piperís along with orators, poets, and minstrel shows. John Piper arrived in Virginia City in 1860, and opened the Old Corner Wines, Liquors & Co., on this site. He was involved early on in Storey County politics and was elected to the city council in 1865, and took over the mayoral seat the following year. He also served as Storey County
Piperís Opera House and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, August 24, 2009
2. Piperís Opera House and Marker
Marker can be seen at the right next to the stairs.
Commissioner and was elected state Senator from Storey County in 1875 and 1877. John Piperís political contributions to Virginia City are all but forgotten today, overshadowed by his three decades of ownership of the famed opera house. John Piper died in San Francisco on January 3, 1897 at age 63.

At left, Piperís Opera House during the 1920ís. It fell into disrepair and required many years of restoration to bring it back to todayís appearance.
 
Erected 2009 by Piper's Opera House. (Marker Number 10.)
 
Location. 39° 18.66′ N, 119° 39.008′ W. Marker is in Virginia City, Nevada, in Storey County. Marker is on B Street near Union Street. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 12 North B Street, Virginia City NV 89440, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Piperís Opera House (here, next to this marker); The Storey County Jail (within shouting distance of this marker); 601's (within shouting distance of this marker); Storey County Courthouse (within shouting distance of this marker); Chinatown (within shouting distance of this marker);
Close-Up of Photo on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, August 24, 2009
3. Close-Up of Photo on Marker
This photo from the 1920's is mentioned in the marker text.
Site of International Hotels (within shouting distance of this marker); Old Miners Union Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); The Glory of Solidarity and Fraternity (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Virginia City.
 
Regarding Piperís Opera House. Also see Nearby Marker Piper's Opera House for additional photos, links and additional information.

This site has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
 
Also see . . .
1. Thomas Maguire in Virginia City. The original owner of the Opera House, Thomas Maquire was known as the "Napoleon of Impresarios". He was one of the best known and most influential theater entreprenuers on the west coast during the 1860s. (Submitted on August 29, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.) 

2. John Piper. A Nevada On-Line encyclopedia article on John Piper. (Submitted on August 29, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.) 
 
Categories. Arts, Letters, MusicNotable BuildingsNotable Places
 
Hand-tinted Postcard View of the Interior of Piperís Opera House image. Click for full size.
circa 1920
4. Hand-tinted Postcard View of the Interior of Piperís Opera House
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 916 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.   4. submitted on . This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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