Nevada, abbreviation NV, is located in the western United States of America and is characterized by a rugged mountain range. Most people know Nevada through the gambling paradise of Las Vegas. Nevada is also known as the Silver State. A large part of the economy runs on the hotels, shows and casinos in these cities. See all cities in Nevada.
The Hoover Dam is a must-see structure. The Hoover Dam provides power by the force of the flowing water in the Colorado River. Other attractions include Burning Man, which is an annual festival in the Black Rock Desert and Lake Tahoe.
Nevada is a large state, it is located in the so-called ‘Intermountain West’ region, between the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada. It borders the states of Idaho, Utah, Arizona, California, and Oregon. Nevada measures 775 kilometers from north to south and 500 kilometers from west to east. Southern Nevada is in the shape of a triangle, its width decreasing south to the tristate point known as CalNevAri.
Although Nevada is often described as the ‘Nevada Basin’, the state is very mountainous. Numerous isolated mountain ranges are scattered across the state, with the greatest concentration in the middle. The mountain ranges run north-south and many have peaks over 3,000 meters, the highest point being 4,007 meter high Boundary Peak, located 1 kilometer from the border with California. The valleys are mostly 1,200 to 1,800 meters above sea level, except in southern Nevada, where they are lower. This area is part of the Mojave Desert. Due to the large differences in height, the landscape and vegetation change significantly depending on the altitude.
Nevada consists largely of desert and other dry land. There is little agriculture, although there are areas with circular irrigation in places, especially around Fallon and Yerington in the western part of the state. The rest is largely uncultivated rangeland and wild nature. More than 80 percent of the land is controlled by the federal government. Vegetation in the state ranges from scrubland to higher elevation forests. Several large salt lakes exist in the center and north of the state. In addition, Nevada has several large lakes, of which Lake Tahoe on the border with California is the best known. Pyramid Lake and Walker Lake to the west are also quite large lakes. The largest lake in area is Lake Mead, which lies on the border with Arizona and is formed by the Hoover Dam.
Nevada joined the American Union in 1864, in the midst of the American Civil War. The area was speedily recognized as a state so that Abraham Lincoln and his Republican Party could more easily win that year’s elections. It later turned out that Nevada’s accession was not necessary for this, but once recognized as a state, the area was of course retained as US territory.
The population was not particularly large until 1860; that year, only 6,857 people were counted in Nevada. In the years after 1860, the population grew mainly due to the discovery of lucrative silver and gold mines, which drove thousands of treasure hunters to the state, mainly from California. Yet in 1930, partly because the mines were eventually exhausted, the population was only about 90,000, of which 19,000 lived in Reno and only 5,000 in Las Vegas.
In 1931, during the Great Depression, Nevada, like the rest of the US, was struggling to survive and state legislators decided to make gambling legal in Nevada. That same year, the state made it possible to apply for a flash divorce, with the only requirement being that one lived in the state for at least 6 weeks.
In the period up to the end of the Second World War, the city of Reno grew very quickly as a gambling city, partly due to the establishment of army bases nearby. It wasn’t until the late 1940’s that Las Vegas began to grow, when the mobster “Bugsy” Siegel built the largest casino in the world in the city. In the decades that followed, Las Vegas grew faster and faster, eventually taking the title of largest gambling city from Reno.
Nevada’s primary economic sector is tourism and associated activities. Nevada is renowned for its legal gambling (Las Vegas) and also attracts many visitors for its marriage and divorce facilities (divorce, pronounced in Reno after six weeks there, is valid in all US states). After the tourism industry, the government is the most important employer (namely the Nellis Air Force Base and the Nevada Test Site of the US Department of Energy, both near Las Vegas).
The other economic activities are trade, construction, processing of agricultural and mining products, agriculture and mining. The main agricultural activity is animal husbandry (sheep, cows; dairy and wool). The main agricultural products (hay, potatoes, vegetables, subtropical fruits, cotton, grains) depend entirely on irrigation and therefore mainly come from the south and (mainly) southeast. The main mining products are copper, gold, petroleum, sand and gravel, and manganese. Since the state constitution prohibits estate taxes, many millionaires live there.
|The Silver State
|Joined the US as the 36th state on:
|October 31, 1864
|Bordering Idaho, Utah, Arizona, California and Oregon
|All for our country
|California official website: