The Mob Museum in Las Vegas
You’ve heard the stories. You’ve seen the movies. However, every story has two sides. What people say happened — and what really happened. Moreover, the only people that know the real side of the story are the ones who were there.
This eye-opening, authentic view of organized crime’s impact on the world reveals an insider’s look at the events and characters of the continuing battle between mob bosses and law enforcement in the United States. Real stories are brought to life with engaging, multi-sensory exhibits and unparalleled insights from those on the front lines of both sides of the war. Offering a provocative, contemporary look at the fascinating topic of the Mob through hundreds of artifacts and immersive storytelling, let the Mob stories come alive as they unfold around you.
Making a Mobster Museum
The Inspiration Behind The Mob Museum, Las Vegas
It’s the year 2000, and the federal government has decided to sell the former post office and federal courthouse building that’s been sitting unused back to the city of Las Vegas for $1. Only two stipulations — the building had to be restored to its original glory, and used for a cultural purpose. Oscar Goodman, a former Mob defense attorney and then-mayor of Las Vegas, had the idea for a Mob museum in 2002, and while the idea was supported by the FBI, it faced some pushback from Italian-American groups. Nonetheless, grant funding was secured and on Valentine’s Day in 2012, The Mob Museum officially opened.
Today, The Mob Museum is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that operates with a mission to advance the public understanding of organized crime’s history and its incredible impact on American society. If you’re looking for a bold and authentic view of what happened back then up to present day, you found it. The movies do some justice to the scene, but the Mob Museum in Las Vegas gives you insight into the real-deal handlings, dealings, deaths, and undertakings of some of the most prominent Mob families in the world.
The Mob Museum Exhibits: More Than Just A Gangster Museum
Through photos, text, displays, interactive techniques, hands-on exhibits, and other types of innovative museum display methods (can’t ruin it), you will learn about the Mob’s history of organized crime, Prohibition (and the opportunities it provided), the origins of the FBI, Al Capone, Eliot Ness, and so much more. Visitors can also sit in a replica electric chair, listen to actual wiretaps, or test their skills in the use of force training simulator. The Mob Museum also allows you to explore an interactive crime lab exhibit based on true forensic science.
Levels of the Las Vegas Mob Museum
The Mob Museum is broken into four levels: The Basement, 1st Floor, 2nd Floor, and 3rd Floor. You’ll want at least two hours to spend in the museum, if not many more. Once you enter, it’s hard not to wander further down the rabbit hole—there’s a lot to see.
In the Basement, you’ll find The Speakeasy and Distillery, where you’ll learn more about the underground agendas of Dons and Goodfellas while imbibing on cocktails and whiskey tastings. Make your way up to the 1st Floor for a history lesson on 100 years of Made Men, where you can listen to a guided tour and observe actual artifacts and evidence from the Mob era or participate in a real crime lab experience.
The 2nd Floor is all about the casinos and the Kefauver Hearings, one of which actually took place in The Mob Museum’s building in the early 1950s. On the 3rd Floor, you’ll learn precisely how the Mob was birthed, what Las Vegas meant to its operations, and why Prohibition didn’t really bother too many people that had an in with a coupla good guys back then, ya know? You’ll also see the actual brick wall where the 1929 St. Valentine’s Day Massacre took place.
Visiting The Mob Museum Las Vegas
The Mob Museum, offers self-guided tours, team building activities like a detective challenge or mob mystery game, private docent-led tours, audio tours in various languages, a downtown Las Vegas walking tour, wedding packages and even unique spaces for private meetings and special events.
The Mob Museum is open daily from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. The Underground speakeasy and distillery is open Sunday through Thursday from 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm, and Friday & Saturday from 12:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
The museum encourages visitors to purchase advanced admission tickets online for timed-entry. Nevada residents get a discounted admission ticket with a government-issued ID.