“Snow-covered” Nevada Statehood 1864

The state of Nevada was admitted to the Union on October 31, 1864.  The state was named for the Sierra Nevada mountain range; nevada means “snow-covered” in Spanish.  The native nations initially inhabited the area.  Francisco Garces, a Spanish missionary who had been part of the Juan Bautista de Anza expedition, traveled there in 1776; he was the first European explorer in the region. (Please see October 23, 1775 for more on the Anza Expedition.)  The state hosts many localities with Spanish names, including Las Vegas — which was named by New Mexican businessman Antonio Armijo — Reno, Mina Caliente, Potosi Mountain, Aurora, Candeleria, Aurora, El Dorado, and La Madre Mountains.  The famous Nevada wild mustangs are also Latinos, descended from the horses brought by the Spanish conquistadores / invaders to America in the 16th century.

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