4-28 The State of Nevada

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The great state of Nevada became the 36th state in the Union on October 31, 1864.   Nevada is from the Spanish word meaning "snowcapped."  Its state capital is Carson City.  The colors silver and blue are designated as the official state colors of the State of Nevada.  Indian Rice Grass, once a staple food source for Nevada Indians, now provides valuable feed for wildlife and livestock. This tough native grass, which is found throughout the state, is known for its ability to reseed and establish itself on sites damaged by fire or over grazing.

Although Spain claimed the Nevada region during the 1500s, no exploration occurred until the early 1800s.  Native Americans living there at that time included the Paiute, Shoshone, and Washoe tribes.  Complete Exploration of Nevada occurred during the 1840s.

At the end of the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), the southwest came under U.S. control.  In 1850, the Utah Territory, that included Nevada, was established and some of the first settlers came to Nevada.  Genoa was established by Mormon pioneers and it became a trading post for those traveling to California.

Some non-Mormons came to the Carson Valley.  They did not want to be part of the Utah Territory that was ruled by the Mormons.  Without Congressional approval they established their own territorial government.  In 1859, ore was discovered near what is now Virginia City and thousands came in search of gold and silver.  With sufficient population in 1861, Congress could now create the Nevada Territory.

Nevada did not have a large enough population to become a state during the Civil War  but, President Lincoln saw that most Nevadans were anti-slavery and the President  was in desperate need of silver and gold to help pay for the war.  On Oct. 31, 1864, Nevada became a state with Carson City as its capital.

Emblem/Symbol Name of Emblem/Symbol Adopted
Motto "All for Our Country"  
Nickname Silver State, Sagebrush State  
State Seal 1966
State Bird Mountain Bluebird 1967
State Flower Sagebrush 1917
State Song "Home Means Nevada" 1933
State Tree Single-leaf Pinon
Bristlecone Pine
State Flag 1929
State Reptile Desert Tortoise 1989
State Fish Lahontan Cutthroat Trout 1981
State Animal Desert Bighorn Sheep 1973
State Gemstone Virginia Valley Black Fire Opal 1987
State Rock Sandstone 1987
State Grass Indian Rice Grass  

Complete the questions below.

1.  Nevada became the 36th state in the Union on October 31, .

2.  The state bird is the .

3.  The capital of Nevada is .

4.  "Home Means Nevada" is the state .

5.  The state trees are the Single-leaf Pinon and the .

6.  The state rock is .

7.  The Desert Tortoise is the state .

8.  The state motto is "."

9.  The state flower is .

10.  The state grass is .



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