Welcome to: Nevada
Although Nevada was named for the spanish term “snow-covered,” the state spans from high mountains to some of the driest deserts in the country. Admitted to the Union by President Lincoln as the 36th United State, the original settlers of the area were the Paiute, Walapai, Washoe and Western Shoshone tribes.
Nevada had its first boom after the Comstock Lode – home to rich silver deposits – was discovered in 1859. Considered one of the most important mining discoveries in American history, about 6,971,641 tons, 640 pounds of ore was extracted and milled from 1860 to 1880.
Another famous boom came in 1905, when a railroad line arrived in a desert town, connecting it to the Pacific Rail line. Land was auctioned by railroad backers, and Las Vegas was born. The city was officially incorporated in 1911.
The rest may be history, but the tight-lipped ethos of this “what happens here stays here” town is notorious. A man-made oasis in the desert, Vegas quickly became a beacon for the spirit of the wild west: an anything goes frontier of gambling, booze and decadence.
While the neon lights of Vegas beckon the most visitors of anywhere in the state each year, the natural splendor of Lake Tahoe, the impressive engineering of the Hoover Dam and the barren beauty of Death Valley are all equally worth a trip.
With the sharp contrast from alpine lakes to dusty deserts and dark country roads to bright city lights, you could easily create 4 different vacations all in one visit to the Silver State.