Hot & Dusty Film Fest to Premiere Never-Before-Seen Footage

In lieu of the annual Hot & Dusty Art Invitational, this year the Lost City Museum will host a Hot & Dusty Film Festival. The museum will premiere never-before-seen footage from around the region in the 1920s and 30s, along with unseen images and photos of the museum’s early years.

The footage contains scenes from the 1925 pageant hosted by Governor James G. Scrugham near the St. Thomas site, a ghost town initially founded by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in 1865, but later abandoned when the waters of Lake Mead engulfed the town. 

“In the 1920s as the world learned of the King Tut discovery in Egypt, the Governor —and the world — became fascinated by archeology,” said museum Director Tracey Sprague. “He held two pageant type of events about the history of the area, building a stage to accommodate the events in 1925 and 1926,” she adds.

The film also shows Pueblo Grande de Nevada, Nevada’s “Lost City,” founded by Basketmaker people circa 300 A.D. Some artifacts from the site are housed in the museum. Digitization of the film reel was made possible through the help of museum docent James Reilly.

The Hot & Dusty Film Festival is August 26, 2023, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Lost City Museum. The event includes a silent auction, a presentation by Archaeologist Virginia Lucas, and refreshments. Admission is free.

Proceeds from the event will help the Lost City Museum Docent Council to fund programs and workshops, and to build a new collections storage facility.