Las Vegas

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Las Vegas

(läs vā`gəs), city (1990 pop. 258,295), seat of Clark co., S Nev.; inc. 1911. It is the largest city in Nevada and the center of one of the fastest-growing urban areas in the United States. Revenue from hotels (including many of the world's largest), gambling, entertainment, theme parks, resorts, and other tourist-oriented industries forms the backbone of the economy. The nightclubs, casinos, and championship boxing matches are world famous, and entertainment enterprises have led to an increasing array of music, sports, gambling, and amusement centers up and down the main "strip," as the city succeeded in the 1990s in redefining itself as a family resort, complete with monorail (opened 2004). Its 1,149-ft (350-m) Stratosphere Tower is the country's tallest observation tower. The city is also the commercial hub of a ranching and mining area and has diverse manufacturing, including gaming equipment.

In the 19th cent. Las Vegas was a watering place for travelers bound for southern California. In 1855–57 the Mormons maintained a fort there, and in 1864, Fort Baker was built by the U.S. army. In 1867 Las Vegas was detached from the Arizona Territory and joined to Nevada. Its main growth began with the completion of a railroad in 1905. In 2017 the city was the site of the worst mass shooting in U.S. history; a shooter in a hotel killed 58 and injured more than 500 at an outdoor concert.

A campus of the Univ. of Nevada is there, and Las Vegas also has a number of museums, including ones devoted to natural history, old neon signs from the strip, the entertainer Liberace, and atomic testing. The National Football League's Las Vegas Raiders and the National Hockey League's Vegas Golden Knights are based nearby in Paradise, Nev. Nellis Air Force Base lies to the north of the city, and Hoover Dam is nearby.

Bibliography

See B. Vincent, Las Vegas behind the Tables (1988); E. P. Moehring, Resort City in the Sunbelt: Las Vegas, 1930–1970 (1989); N. Pileggi, Casino: Love and Honor in Las Vegas (1995); S. Denton and R. Morris, The Money and the Power: The Making of Las Vegas and Its Hold on America, 1947–2000 (2001); H. Rothman, Neon Metropolis: How Las Vegas Started the Twenty-first Century (2002); L. Gragg, Bright Light City: Las Vegas in Popular Culture (2013).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Las Vegas

 

a city in the western USA, in the state of Nevada. Population, 125,800 (1970; with suburbs, 273,000). The city is a climatic and balneological health resort, at an altitude of 632 m above sea level. It is a rapidly growing national center for recreation and “entertainment” (roulette and other establishments). The Hoover Dam (which has a power-generating capacity of 1.3 million kilowatts) is located 35 km from the city on the Colorado River. About 4,000 people work in industry. Las Vegas has electrochemical and food-processing enterprises.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Las Vegas

city in Nevada notorious for its gambling casinos since 1945. [Am. Hist.: Payton, 382]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Las Vegas

a city in SE Nevada: famous for luxury hotels and casinos. Pop.: 517 017 (2003 est.)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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