Nevada, one of the Rocky Mountain states of the United States. A stark and arid land, Nevada is a region of rugged, snow-capped peaks, desert valleys green with sage, and sparsely populated expanses that still retain the vestiges of the Old West. But the state is also known for its glittering cities, where luxurious casinos draw visitors from around the world. Carson City is Nevada’s capital. Las Vegas is the largest city. Nevada entered the Union on October 31, 1864, as the 36th state. The first European settlers of the state came for its mineral wealth, and the gold and silver labored out of Nevada’s famous mines created the state’s first boom period..
Vast ranches were developed in the north, where rainfall was sufficient to provide grazing for cattle and sheep. Later the state’s gambling casinos and scenic landscapes would attract millions of tourists. Today, however, Nevada has a relatively diversified economy. Tourism, mining, and ranching remain important, but construction, financial services, and trade have grown rapidly. The state’s name is taken from the Sierra Nevada, a mountain range shared by Nevada and California; nevada is Spanish for “snow covered.”
Nevada is called the Silver State for its many silver mines, the Sagebrush State for its abundant sagebrush, and the Battle Born State because it was admitted to the Union during the American Civil War (1861-1865). © "United States" © Emmanuel Buchot and Encarta
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