Oasis Bordello Museum

Location: 605 Cedar Street, Wallace
Phone: (208) 753-0801
The history of early mining towns is often filled with the lives of men who both worked hard and played hard, and Wallace is no exception. In this richest silver mining district in the world, it wasn’t long before men outnumbered women 200 to 1, and several enterprising women decided to develop the town’s first red light district. In 1895, Wallace’s Bi Metallic Building was a popular hotel and saloon. At some undetermined date, however, the saloon became the Oasis Rooms, just one of the town’s five popular brothels. The Oasis Rooms quickly became a favorite local stop, and eventually, the Oasis was the only brothel continuing to offer its one of a kind service. Although the ladies changed, the popularity of the Oasis Rooms remained the same as the business operated until 1988, fifteen years after Idaho’s governor criminalized prostitution.

Mysteriously, when the final ladies departed in January 1988, they left nearly everything behind, including clothes, makeup, personal items, and even dirty dishes in the sink. This atmosphere has been preserved, and today, visitors can take an accurate guided tour of the establishment. Information gleaned from the ladies themselves, previous clients, local police officers, the women’s hairstylists, and former maids and bouncers is tastefully presented, and the tour has been praised from past clients to church groups. In the basement, visitors can also view a still and old wine press left from the town’s early days. Tours are offered on the half hour from 9:30 AM to 6:30 PM Monday through Saturday and 10 AM to 5 PM on Sundays. Admission is $5 for person, but the main floor gift shop and Robert Thomas Murals are free.

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