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Nevada is located in the western region of the United States of America. The capital is Carson City and the largest city is Las Vegas. The state's nickname is "The Silver State" due to the large number of silver deposits that were discovered and mined there. In 1864, Nevada became the 36th state to enter the union, and the phrase "Battle Born" on the state flag reflects the state's entry on the Union side during the American Civil War. Its first settlement was called Mormon Station.
Nevada is the seventh-largest state in area, and geographically covers the Mojave Desert in the south to the Great Basin in the north. About 86% of the state's land is owned by the US federal government under various jurisdictions both civilian and military. As of 2006, there were about 2.6 million residents, with over 85% of the population residing in the metropolitan areas around Las Vegas and Reno. The state is well known for its easy marriage and divorce proceedings, legalization of gambling and, in a few counties, legalized brothels.
In 2005, the state issued a specialty license plate via the Nevada Commission on Tourism that lists the name of the state as Nevăda to help with the pronunciation problem. Local residents - particularly natives of the state - resent hearing Nevada's name mispronounced in the national media.
Unregulated gambling was common place in the early Nevada mining towns but outlawed in 1909 as part of a nation-wide anti-gaming crusade. Due to subsequent declines in mining output and the decline of the agricultural sector during the Great Depression, Nevada re-legalized gambling on March 19, 1931, with approval from the legislature. At the time, the leading proponents of gambling expected that it would be a short term fix until the state's economic base widened to include less cyclical industries. However, re-outlawing gambling has never been seriously considered since, and the industry has become Nevada's primary source of revenue today.
In 1935, construction began on Hoover Dam, located outside Las Vegas near Boulder City. Thousands of workers from across the country came to build the dam, and providing for their needs in turn required many more workers. The boom in population is likely to have fueled the relegalization of gambling, alike present-day industry. Both Hoover Dam and later war industries such as the Basic Magnesium Plant first started the growth of the southern area of the state near Las Vegas. Over the last 75 years, Clark County has grown in relation to the Reno area, and today encompasses most of the state's population.
Nevada's nicknames are "Sagebrush State, "Battle Born State", and "Silver State", and the state's motto is "All for Our Country". "Home Means Nevada" by Bertha Raffetto is the state song. The phrase "Battle Born" is on the state flag; "The Battle Born State" is the official state slogan, as Nevada was admitted into the union during the American Civil War.
Several United States Navy ships have been named USS Nevada in honor of the state.
Nevada is home to Nellis Air Force Base, a major testing and training base of the United States Air Force. Nellis is reputedly the home of Area 51, a top-secret installation of which the U.S. federal government has always denied existence. Area 51 is supposedly located in Groom Lake. Some time ago, the United States Air Force confirmed that there is an operating facility at Groom Lake, but the nature of the activities being conducted at Groom Lake are classified and cannot be disclosed.
Wording courtesy of http://www.wikipedia.org/
Photos courtesy of Nevada Commission on Tourism