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“Worth stopping for.”

Laws Railroad Museum
Ranked #2 of 21 things to do in Bishop
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Artifacts of the Railroad Era on display, from a Death Valley Railroad motor car to train tracks and historic buildings.
Level Contributor
93 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Worth stopping for.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 18, 2013

We had a blast at this museum, so much to look at, and so much history. Because of the way the "town" was set up it really gave you the sense of being transported back in time. My kids dug the mining area and the barber shop among other things. Definitely worth a stop. Admission is free, but there is a suggested donation. Cannot remember the amount.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank travlinfamily1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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198 reviews from our community

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English first
Newport Beach, California
Level Contributor
37 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“A fun diversion and a trip back in time”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2013

Laws is a great diversion when you are traveling in the Eastern Sierras. Our family enjoys the self guided tour and relaxing in the shade. We weren't sure how our kids would respond (what? no electronics?) but they love the freedom to walk around and they actually enjoy asking questions about how life used to be lived. This is a low budget place and there is always a nice attendant but I wish there was a guided tour option with history on the place, etc.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
Thank PermaJetLag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
63 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Fabulous gem of a historic site”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 12, 2013

This place is a little hidden gem. It is built around the 1880s railroad depot and a couple of other buildings from Laws (5 miles outside of Bishop) They have moved other buildings into the site, as well as old farm equipment and mining equipment. There is a train there as well. The buildings have nicely done interiors with articles from the time period. The recently opened mining exhibit is really fascinating. It's clear that it is a labor of love. We really enjoyed spending a couple of hours there.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank cds_SanFrancisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portal, Arizona
Level Contributor
96 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
“More than just a Railroad Museum”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 10, 2013

I loved this museum! What a gem. I always have passed it by, thinking that it would be just a train museum, but it's also a mining museum, and historic replica of an 1800's town. The buildings were mostly relocated to the museum town of Laws, but they are authentic and crammed with lots of fun antiques. We spent over 2 hours there, but could have easily spent more given the time. Whatever your schedule, it's worth the stop, and for a suggested 5.00 donation, you can't beat it. Kids are less.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Statia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
42 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“For the record: those aren't replicas”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2013

Lots of reviewers below talk about how great the "replica" buildings are. For the record, people: most of the buildings at Laws are the genuine article. They're real homes and shops, some more than 100 years old. (A few are also buildings that were built as set pieces for some of the many western movies that have been filmed in the valley going back to the 1930s.) They've been gradually moved from all over the northern Owens Valley, and reassembled here to look like an old pioneer town. The houses have been stuffed with artifacts from prominent early citizens in a wide range of occupations, so Laws commemorates both the places and the people who made the Owens Valley what it is.

For example: I remember (and I bet Baer Charlton does, too) attending weddings in the little church at Laws back when it was still parked downtown, behind the Town House Motel, and was actively serving the Catholic congregation. It was the predecessor to the Our Lady of Perpetual Help church now out on Home Street.

It's a wonderful place to spend an afternoon, and there's really something here for people of all ages. Stop by Schat's on the way out of town and pick up a picnic to eat on the grounds. There's plenty to see and do, and lots of great photo opportunities. Beyond that, it's just wonderful to be out in the countryside, getting a feel for how lonely and fragile these early pioneer towns really were.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank RedAhead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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