Community and Society

Clark's Las Vegas Townsite Auction

The birth of downtown Las Vegas took place during a land auction on Monday, May 15, 1905, when 1,200 lots in an area called Clark's Las Vegas Townsite were offered for sale. The townsite was named after U.S. Senator William Clark of Montana, who had purchased the 1,800-acre Stewart Ranch from area pioneer rancher Helen J. Stewart in 1902.

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) have had a presence in Nevada for more than 150 years. They were the first people of European descent to establish a settlement in Nevada. Soon after the Mormons located in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847, their leader and prophet, Brigham Young, laid claim to a vast section of the interior west. The church designated this region as the “State of Deseret.” However, when Congress created Utah Territory in 1850, it ignored much of the Mormons’ claim.

Cherry Creek

Like many mining towns in Nevada, the story of Cherry Creek in White Pine County is one of boom and bust. It sprang up shortly after Peter Corning and John Carpenter located the nearby Tea Cup claim in 1872. Many mining companies flocked to the area, and the town grew until it busted just three years later because of dwindling ore supplies.

Carmelite Monastery, Reno

In August, 1954, eight nuns from a strictly cloistered Carmelite monastery in Indianapolis accepted an invitation from Nevada bishop, Robert J. Dwyer, to establish a foundation in Reno. It has since been embraced by people of all religious persuasions, who request the nuns' prayers and contribute to their financial support. The Carmel of Reno has a rich heritage.


The town of Carlin emerged soon after the Central Pacific Railroad established the eastern terminus of its Humboldt Division in 1868. Even before the town was platted, a small group of Chinese railroad workers occupied the area on what is now the western border of Elko County.


The city of Caliente is located in Central Lincoln County on U.S. Highway 93, 150 miles north of Las Vegas. William A. Clark, senator from Montana, and E. H. Harriman of the Union Pacific Railroad established the town in 1901 during the construction of the San Pedro, Los Angeles and Salt Lake Railroad. It prospered as a division point on the railroad for nearly fifty years, until its shops and roundhouse were deactivated after World War II.


Bullionville was an ephemeral milling town one mile north of Panaca, established in the 1870s as a satellite of the silver mines at Pioche in Lincoln County. Mine operators chose its location because of the reliable supply of water from Meadow Valley Creek, the most northerly tributary of the Colorado River in Nevada.

Boulder Dam Hotel

Completed in December 1933, the Boulder Dam Hotel was built to house the large number of tourists who wanted to visit Boulder Dam, as Hoover Dam was called at the time. Thousands came to southern Nevada to observe the construction of the dam, often taking a train that ran directly from Los Angeles to Boulder City or driving up the Arrowhead Highway, later Highway 91. By the summer of 1933, it was clear that the town needed a hotel.

Bob Brown

Few journalists and political figures have been more involved in Nevada politics than Bob Brown. Born in Glendale, California, he was the son of a newspaperman and started working in a pressroom when he was nine. He worked his way through college as a press operator for newspapers in New Mexico and Wyoming before spending five years with United Press, mainly covering the Far East and Middle East.

Bert Goldwater

Bertram Mortimer (Bert) Goldwater lived most of his life in Reno as a criminal and civil lawyer. He was a passionate defender of civil liberties and served as first chairman of Nevada's Equal Rights Commission. For many years he was a United States bankruptcy judge–a position held until his death at the age of 91.


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