Maricopa County, Arizona
Maricopa County is a county in the south-central part of the U. S. state of Arizona. The U. S. Census Bureau estimated its population was 4,307,033 as of 2017, making it the state's most populous county, the fourth-most populous in the United States, containing more than half the population of Arizona, it is more populous than 23 states. The county seat is the state capital and fifth-most populous city in the United States. Maricopa County is the central county of the Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale, AZ Metropolitan Statistical Area. Maricopa County was named after the Maricopa Indians. There are five Indian reservations located in the county; the largest are the Gila River Indian Community. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 9,224 square miles, of which 9,200 square miles is land and 24 square miles is water. Maricopa County is one of the largest counties in the United States by area, with a land area greater than that of four states. From west to east, it stretches 132 miles and 103 miles from north to south.
It is by far Arizona's most populous county, encompassing well over half of the state's residents. It is the largest county in the United States to have a capital city. La Paz County – west Yuma County – west Pima County – south Pinal County – southeast Gila County – east Yavapai County – north Sonoran Desert National Monument Tonto National Forest As of the census of 2000, there were 3,072,149 people, 1,132,886 households, 763,565 families residing in the county; the population density was 334 people per square mile. There were 1,250,231 housing units at an average density of 136/sq mi; the racial makeup of the county was 77.4% White, 3.7% African American, 1.9% Native American, 2.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 11.9% from other races, 2.9% from two or more races. 29.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 19.1% reported speaking Spanish at home. There were 1,132,886 households out of which 33.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 32.6% were non-families.
24.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.9% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.21. The population was spread out with 27.0% under the age of 18, 10.2% from 18 to 24, 31.4% from 25 to 44, 19.80% from 45 to 64, 11.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 100.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.10 males. The median income for a household in the county was $45,358, the median income for a family was $51,827. Males had a median income of $36,858 versus $28,703 for females; the per capita income for the county was $22,251. About 8.0% of families and 11.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.4% of those under age 18 and 7.4% of those age 65 or over. As of the 2010 census, there were 3,817,117 people, 1,411,583 households, 932,814 families residing in the county; the population density was 414.9 inhabitants per square mile.
There were 1,639,279 housing units at an average density of 178.2 per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 73.0% white, 5.0% black or African American, 3.5% Asian, 2.1% American Indian, 0.2% Pacific islander, 12.8% from other races, 3.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 29.6% of the population. The largest ancestry groups were: Of the 1,411,583 households, 35.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.8% were married couples living together, 12.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.9% were non-families, 25.9% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.25. The median age was 34.6 years. The median income for a household in the county was $55,054 and the median income for a family was $65,438. Males had a median income of $45,799 versus $37,601 for females; the per capita income for the county was $27,816. About 10.0% of families and 13.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.8% of those under age 18 and 7.0% of those age 65 or over.
According to data provided by the United States Census Bureau in October 2015 and collected from 2009-2013, 73.72% of the population aged five years and over spoke only English at home, while 20.32% spoke Spanish, 0.56% spoke Chinese, 0.47% Vietnamese, 0.41% Tagalog, 0.37% Arabic, 0.36% German, 0.30% French, 0.25% Navajo, 0.21% Korean, 0.20% Hindi, 0.15% Italian, 0.14% Persian, 0.13% Russian, 0.13% Serbocroatian, 0.12% Telugu, 0.12% Polish, 0.11% Syriac, 0.11% Japanese, 0.11% spoke Romanian, 0.10% spoke other Native North American languages at home. The governing body of Maricopa County is its Board of Supervisors; the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors consists of five members chosen by popular vote within their own districts. The Board consists of four Republicans, each representing districts in the more affluent or conservative districts of the county, one Democrat, representing the largest district; each member serves a four-year term, with no term limits. The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office provides court protection, administers the county jail, patrols the unincorporated areas of the county plus incorporated towns by contract.
Maricopa County has a long history of being a Republican Party stronghold. While the city of Phoenix leans towards the Democratic Party, along with some other small areas within the county, the rest of the
A ZIP Code is a postal code used by the United States Postal Service in a system it introduced in 1963. The term ZIP is an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan; the basic format consists of five digits. An extended ZIP+4 code was introduced in 1983 which includes the five digits of the ZIP Code, followed by a hyphen and four additional digits that reference a more specific location; the term ZIP Code was registered as a servicemark by the U. S. Postal Service, but its registration has since expired; the early history and context of postal codes began with postal district/zone numbers. The United States Post Office Department implemented postal zones for numerous large cities in 1943. For example: The "16" was the number of the postal zone in the specific city. By the early 1960s, a more organized system was needed, non-mandatory five-digit ZIP Codes were introduced nationwide on July 1, 1963; the USPOD issued its Publication 59: Abbreviations for Use with ZIP Code on October 1, 1963, with the list of two-letter state abbreviations which are written with both letters capitalized.
An earlier list in June had proposed capitalized abbreviations ranging from two to five letters. According to Publication 59, the two-letter standard was "based on a maximum 23-position line, because this has been found to be the most universally acceptable line capacity basis for major addressing systems", which would be exceeded by a long city name combined with a multi-letter state abbreviation, such as "Sacramento, Calif." along with the ZIP Code. The abbreviations have remained unchanged, with the exception of Nebraska, changed from NB to NE in 1969 at the request of the Canadian postal administration, to avoid confusion with the Canadian province of New Brunswick. Robert Moon is considered the father of the ZIP Code; the post office only credits Moon with the first three digits of the ZIP Code, which describe the sectional center facility or "sec center." An SCF is a central mail processing facility with those three digits. The fourth and fifth digits, which give a more precise locale within the SCF, were proposed by Henry Bentley Hahn Sr.
The SCF sorts mail to all post offices with those first three digits in their ZIP Codes. The mail is sorted according to the final two digits of the ZIP Code and sent to the corresponding post offices in the early morning. Sectional centers do not deliver mail and are not open to the public, most of their employees work the night shift. Mail picked up at post offices is sent to their own SCF in the afternoon, where the mail is sorted overnight. In the case of large cities, the last two digits coincide with the older postal zone number thus: In 1967, these became mandatory for second- and third-class bulk mailers, the system was soon adopted generally; the United States Post Office used a cartoon character, which it called Mr. ZIP, to promote the use of the ZIP Code, he was depicted with a legend such as "USE ZIP CODE" in the selvage of panes of postage stamps or on the covers of booklet panes of stamps. In 1971 Elmira Star-Gazette reporter Dick Baumbach found out the White House was not using a ZIP Code on its envelopes.
Herb Klein, special assistant to President Nixon, responded by saying the next printing of envelopes would include the ZIP Code. In 1983, the U. S. Postal Service introduced an expanded ZIP Code system that it called ZIP+4 called "plus-four codes", "add-on codes", or "add-ons". A ZIP+4 Code uses the basic five-digit code plus four additional digits to identify a geographic segment within the five-digit delivery area, such as a city block, a group of apartments, an individual high-volume receiver of mail, a post office box, or any other unit that could use an extra identifier to aid in efficient mail sorting and delivery. However, initial attempts to promote universal use of the new format met with public resistance and today the plus-four code is not required. In general, mail is read by a multiline optical character reader that instantly determines the correct ZIP+4 Code from the address—along with the more specific delivery point—and sprays an Intelligent Mail barcode on the face of the mail piece that corresponds to 11 digits—nine for the ZIP+4 Code and two for the delivery point.
For Post Office Boxes, the general rule is. The add-on code is one of the following: the last four digits of the box number, zero plus the last three digits of the box number, or, if the box number consists of fewer than four digits, enough zeros are attached to the front of the box number to produce a four-digit number. However, there is no uniform rule, so the ZIP+4 Code must be looked up individually for each box; the ZIP Code is translated into an Intelligent Mail barcode, printed on the mailpiece to make it easier for automated machines to sort. A barcode can be printed by the sender, it is better to let the post office put one on. In general, the post office uses OCR technology, though in some cases a human might have to read and enter the address. Customers who send bulk mail can get a discount on postage if they have printed the barcode themselves and have presorted the mai
A semi-arid climate or steppe climate is the climate of a region that receives precipitation below potential evapotranspiration, but not as low as a desert climate. There are different kinds of semi-arid climates, depending on variables such as temperature, they give rise to different biomes. A more precise definition is given by the Köppen climate classification, which treats steppe climates as intermediates between desert climates and humid climates in ecological characteristics and agricultural potential. Semi-arid climates tend to support short or scrubby vegetation and are dominated by either grasses or shrubs. To determine if a location has a semi-arid climate, the precipitation threshold must first be determined. Finding the precipitation threshold involves first multiplying the average annual temperature in °C by 20 adding 280 if 70% or more of the total precipitation is in the high-sun half of the year, or 140 if 30%–70% of the total precipitation is received during the applicable period, or 0 if less than 30% of the total precipitation is so received.
If the area's annual precipitation is less than the threshold but more than half the threshold, it is classified as a BS. Furthermore, to delineate "hot semi-arid climates" from "cold semi-arid climates", there are three used isotherms: Either a mean annual temperature of 18°C, or a mean temperature of 0°C or −3°C in the coldest month, so that a location with a "BS" type climate with the appropriate temperature above whichever isotherm is being used is classified as "hot semi-arid", a location with the appropriate temperature below the given isotherm is classified as "cold semi-arid". Hot semi-arid climates tend to be located in the 20s and 30s latitudes of the in proximity to regions with a tropical savanna or a humid subtropical climate; these climates tend to have hot, sometimes hot and warm to cool winters, with some to minimal precipitation. Hot semi-arid climates are most found around the fringes of subtropical deserts. Hot semi-arid climates are most found in Africa and South Asia. In Australia, a large portion of the Outback surrounding the central desert regions lies within the hot semi-arid climate region.
In South Asia, both India and sections of Pakistan experiences the seasonal effects of monsoons and feature short but well-defined wet seasons, but is not sufficiently wet overall to qualify as a tropical savanna climate. Hot semi-arid climates can be found in Europe, parts of North America, such as in Mexico, areas of the Southwestern United States, sections of South America such as the sertão, the Gran Chaco, on the poleward side of the arid deserts, where they feature a Mediterranean precipitation pattern, with rainless summers and wetter winters. Cold semi-arid climates tend to be located in elevated portions of temperate zones bordering a humid continental climate or a Mediterranean climate, they are found in continental interiors some distance from large bodies of water. Cold semi-arid climates feature warm to hot dry summers, though their summers are not quite as hot as those of hot semi-arid climates. Unlike hot semi-arid climates, areas with cold semi-arid climates tend to have cold winters.
These areas see some snowfall during the winter, though snowfall is much lower than at locations at similar latitudes with more humid climates. Areas featuring cold semi-arid climates tend to have higher elevations than areas with hot semi-arid climates, tend to feature major temperature swings between day and night, sometimes by as much as 20 °C or more in that time frame; these large diurnal temperature variations are seen in hot semi-arid climates. Cold semi-arid climates at higher latitudes tend to have dry winters and wetter summers, while cold semi-arid climates at lower latitudes tend to have precipitation patterns more akin to subtropical climates, with dry summers wet winters, wetter springs and autumns. Cold semi-arid climates are most found in Asia and North America. However, they can be found in Northern Africa, South Africa, sections of South America and sections of interior southern Australia and New Zealand. In climate classification, three isotherms means that delineate between hot and cold semi-arid climates — the 18°C average annual temperature or that of the coldest month, the warm side of the isotherm of choice defining a BSh climate from the BSk on the cooler side.
As a result of this, some areas can have climates that are classified as hot or cold semi-arid depending on the isotherm used. One such location is San Diego, which has cool summers for the latitude due to prevailing winds off the ocean but mild winters. Continental climate Dust Bowl Goyder's Line Köppen climate classification Palliser's Triangle Ustic Wave height
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. The term is used in connection with national population and housing censuses; the United Nations defines the essential features of population and housing censuses as "individual enumeration, universality within a defined territory and defined periodicity", recommends that population censuses be taken at least every 10 years. United Nations recommendations cover census topics to be collected, official definitions and other useful information to co-ordinate international practice; the word is of Latin origin: during the Roman Republic, the census was a list that kept track of all adult males fit for military service. The modern census is essential to international comparisons of any kind of statistics, censuses collect data on many attributes of a population, not just how many people there are. Censuses began as the only method of collecting national demographic data, are now part of a larger system of different surveys.
Although population estimates remain an important function of a census, including the geographic distribution of the population, statistics can be produced about combinations of attributes e.g. education by age and sex in different regions. Current administrative data systems allow for other approaches to enumeration with the same level of detail but raise concerns about privacy and the possibility of biasing estimates. A census can be contrasted with sampling in which information is obtained only from a subset of a population. Modern census data are used for research, business marketing, planning, as a baseline for designing sample surveys by providing a sampling frame such as an address register. Census counts are necessary to adjust samples to be representative of a population by weighting them as is common in opinion polling. Stratification requires knowledge of the relative sizes of different population strata which can be derived from census enumerations. In some countries, the census provides the official counts used to apportion the number of elected representatives to regions.
In many cases, a chosen random sample can provide more accurate information than attempts to get a population census. A census is construed as the opposite of a sample as its intent is to count everyone in a population rather than a fraction. However, population censuses rely on a sampling frame to count the population; this is the only way to be sure that everyone has been included as otherwise those not responding would not be followed up on and individuals could be missed. The fundamental premise of a census is that the population is not known and a new estimate is to be made by the analysis of primary data; the use of a sampling frame is counterintuitive as it suggests that the population size is known. However, a census is used to collect attribute data on the individuals in the nation; this process of sampling marks the difference between historical census, a house to house process or the product of an imperial decree, the modern statistical project. The sampling frame used by census is always an address register.
Thus it is not known how many people there are in each household. Depending on the mode of enumeration, a form is sent to the householder, an enumerator calls, or administrative records for the dwelling are accessed; as a preliminary to the dispatch of forms, census workers will check any address problems on the ground. While it may seem straightforward to use the postal service file for this purpose, this can be out of date and some dwellings may contain a number of independent households. A particular problem is what are termed'communal establishments' which category includes student residences, religious orders, homes for the elderly, people in prisons etc; as these are not enumerated by a single householder, they are treated differently and visited by special teams of census workers to ensure they are classified appropriately. Individuals are counted within households and information is collected about the household structure and the housing. For this reason international documents refer to censuses of housing.
The census response is made by a household, indicating details of individuals resident there. An important aspect of census enumerations is determining which individuals can be counted from which cannot be counted. Broadly, three definitions can be used: de facto residence; this is important to consider individuals who have temporary addresses. Every person should be identified uniquely as resident in one place but where they happen to be on Census Day, their de facto residence, may not be the best place to count them. Where an individual uses services may be more useful and this is at their usual, or de jure, residence. An individual may be represented at a permanent address a family home for students or long term migrants, it is necessary to have a precise definition of residence to decide whether visitors to a country should be included in the population count. This is becoming more important as students travel abroad for education for a period of several years. Other groups causing problems of enumeration are new born babies, people away on holiday, people moving home around census day, people without a fixed address.
People having second homes because of working in another part of the country or retaining a holiday cottage are dif
Western is a genre of various arts which tell stories set in the latter half of the 19th century in the American Old West centering on the life of a nomadic cowboy or gunfighter armed with a revolver and a rifle who rides a horse. Cowboys and gunslingers wear Stetson hats, neckerchief bandannas, spurs, cowboy boots and buckskins. Recurring characters include the aforementioned cowboys, Native Americans, lawmen, bounty hunters, gamblers and settlers; the ambience is punctuated with a Western music score, including American and Mexican folk music such as country, Native American music, New Mexico music, rancheras. Westerns stress the harshness of the wilderness and set the action in an arid, desolate landscape of deserts and mountains; the vast landscape plays an important role, presenting a "...mythic vision of the plains and deserts of the American West". Specific settings include ranches, small frontier towns, saloons and isolated military forts of the Wild West. Common plots include: The construction of a telegraph line on the wild frontier.
Ranchers protecting their family ranch from rustlers or large landowners or who build a ranch empire. Revenge stories, which hinge on the chase and pursuit by someone, wronged. Stories about cavalry fighting Native Americans. Outlaw gang plots. Stories about a lawman or bounty hunter tracking down his quarry. Many Westerns use a stock plot of depicting a crime showing the pursuit of the wrongdoer, ending in revenge and retribution, dispensed through a shootout or quick-draw duel; the Western was the most popular Hollywood genre from the early 20th century to the 1960s. Western films first became well-attended in the 1930s. John Ford's landmark Western adventure Stagecoach became one of the biggest hits in 1939 and it made John Wayne a mainstream screen star; the popularity of Westerns continued with the release of classics such as Red River. Westerns were popular throughout the 1950s and 1960s. Many of the most acclaimed Westerns were released during this time, including High Noon, The Searchers, Cat Ballou, The Wild Bunch and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
Classic Westerns such as these have been the inspiration for various films about Western-type characters in contemporary settings, such as Junior Bonner, set in the 1970s, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, set in the 21st century. The Western genre sometimes portrays the conquest of the wilderness and the subordination of nature in the name of civilization or the confiscation of the territorial rights of the original, Native American, inhabitants of the frontier; the Western depicts a society organized around codes of honor and personal, direct or private justice–"frontier justice"–dispensed by gunfights. These honor codes are played out through depictions of feuds or individuals seeking personal revenge or retribution against someone who has wronged them; this Western depiction of personal justice contrasts with justice systems organized around rationalistic, abstract law that exist in cities, in which social order is maintained predominately through impersonal institutions such as courtrooms.
The popular perception of the Western is a story that centers on the life of a semi-nomadic wanderer a cowboy or a gunfighter. A showdown or duel at high noon featuring two or more gunfighters is a stereotypical scene in the popular conception of Westerns. In some ways, such protagonists may be considered the literary descendants of the knight errant which stood at the center of earlier extensive genres such as the Arthurian Romances. Like the cowboy or gunfighter of the Western, the knight errant of the earlier European tales and poetry was wandering from place to place on his horse, fighting villains of various kinds and bound to no fixed social structures but only to their own innate code of honor, and like knights errant, the heroes of Westerns rescue damsels in distress. The wandering protagonists of Westerns share many characteristics with the ronin in modern Japanese culture; the Western takes these elements and uses them to tell simple morality tales, although some notable examples are more morally ambiguous.
Westerns stress the harshness and isolation of the wilderness and set the action in an arid, desolate landscape. Western films have specific settings such as isolated ranches, Native American villages, or small frontier towns with a saloon. Oftentimes, these settings appear deserted and without much structure. Apart from the wilderness, it is the saloon that emphasizes that this is the Wild West: it is the place to go for music, gambling, drinking and shooting. In some Westerns, where civilization has arrived, the town has a church, a general store, a bank and a school; the American Film Institute defines Western films as those "set in the American West that the spirit, the struggle and the demise of the new frontier." The term Western, used to describe a narrative film genre, appears to have originated with a July 1912 article in Motion Picture World magazine. Most of the characteristics of Western films were part of 19th-century popular Western
Marriage called matrimony or wedlock, is a or ritually recognised union between spouses that establishes rights and obligations between those spouses, as well as between them and any resulting biological or adopted children and affinity. The definition of marriage varies around the world not only between cultures and between religions, but throughout the history of any given culture and religion, evolving to both expand and constrict in who and what is encompassed, but it is principally an institution in which interpersonal relationships sexual, are acknowledged or sanctioned. In some cultures, marriage is recommended or considered to be compulsory before pursuing any sexual activity; when defined broadly, marriage is considered a cultural universal. A marriage ceremony is known as a wedding. Individuals may marry for several reasons, including legal, libidinal, financial and religious purposes. Whom they marry may be influenced by gender determined rules of incest, prescriptive marriage rules, parental choice and individual desire.
In some areas of the world, arranged marriage, child marriage and sometimes forced marriage, may be practiced as a cultural tradition. Conversely, such practices may be outlawed and penalized in parts of the world out of concerns of the infringement of women's rights, or the infringement of children's rights, because of international law. Around the world in developed democracies, there has been a general trend towards ensuring equal rights within marriage for women and recognizing the marriages of interfaith and same-sex couples; these trends coincide with the broader human rights movement. Marriage can be recognized by a state, an organization, a religious authority, a tribal group, a local community, or peers, it is viewed as a contract. When a marriage is performed and carried out by a government institution in accordance with the marriage laws of the jurisdiction, without religious content, it is a civil marriage. Civil marriage recognizes and creates the rights and obligations intrinsic to matrimony before the state.
When a marriage is performed with religious content under the auspices of a religious institution it is a religious marriage. Religious marriage recognizes and creates the rights and obligations intrinsic to matrimony before that religion. Religious marriage is known variously as sacramental marriage in Catholicism, nikah in Islam, nissuin in Judaism, various other names in other faith traditions, each with their own constraints as to what constitutes, who can enter into, a valid religious marriage; some countries do not recognize locally performed religious marriage on its own, require a separate civil marriage for official purposes. Conversely, civil marriage does not exist in some countries governed by a religious legal system, such as Saudi Arabia, where marriages contracted abroad might not be recognized if they were contracted contrary to Saudi interpretations of Islamic religious law. In countries governed by a mixed secular-religious legal system, such as in Lebanon and Israel, locally performed civil marriage does not exist within the country, preventing interfaith and various other marriages contradicting religious laws from being entered into in the country, civil marriages performed abroad are recognized by the state if they conflict with religious laws.
The act of marriage creates normative or legal obligations between the individuals involved, any offspring they may produce or adopt. In terms of legal recognition, most sovereign states and other jurisdictions limit marriage to opposite-sex couples and a diminishing number of these permit polygyny, child marriages, forced marriages. In modern times, a growing number of countries developed democracies, have lifted bans on and have established legal recognition for the marriages of interfaith and same-sex couples; some cultures allow the dissolution of marriage through annulment. In some areas, child marriages and polygamy may occur in spite of national laws against the practice. Since the late twentieth century, major social changes in Western countries have led to changes in the demographics of marriage, with the age of first marriage increasing, fewer people marrying, more couples choosing to cohabit rather than marry. For example, the number of marriages in Europe decreased by 30% from 1975 to 2005.
In most cultures, married women had few rights of their own, being considered, along with the family's children, the property of the husband. In Europe, the United States, other places in the developed world, beginning in the late 19th century and lasting through the 21st century, marriage has undergone gradual legal changes, aimed at improving the rights of the wife; these changes included giving wives legal identities of their own, abolishing the right of husbands to physically discipline their wives, giving wives property rights, liberalizing divorce laws, providing wives with reproductive rights of their own, requiring a wife's consent when sexual relations occur. These changes have occurred in Western countries. In the 21st century, there continue to be controversies regarding the legal status of married women, legal acceptance of or leniency towards violence within marriage, traditional marriage customs such as dowry and bride price, for
Nevada is a state in the Western United States. It is bordered by Oregon to the northwest, Idaho to the northeast, California to the west, Arizona to the southeast and Utah to the east. Nevada is the 7th most extensive, the 32nd most populous, but the 9th least densely populated of the U. S. states. Nearly three-quarters of Nevada's people live in Clark County, which contains the Las Vegas–Paradise metropolitan area where three of the state's four largest incorporated cities are located. Nevada's capital, however, is Carson City. Nevada is known as the "Silver State" because of the importance of silver to its history and economy, it is known as the "Battle Born State", because it achieved statehood during the Civil War. Nevada is desert and semi-arid, much of it within the Great Basin. Areas south of the Great Basin are within the Mojave Desert, while Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada lie on the western edge. About 86% of the state's land is managed by various jurisdictions of the U. S. federal government, both civilian and military.
Before European contact, Native Americans of the Paiute and Washoe tribes inhabited the land, now Nevada. The first Europeans to explore the region were Spanish, they called the region Nevada because of the snow. The area formed part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, became part of Mexico when it gained independence in 1821; the United States annexed the area in 1848 after its victory in the Mexican–American War, it was incorporated as part of Utah Territory in 1850. The discovery of silver at the Comstock Lode in 1859 led to a population boom that became an impetus to the creation of Nevada Territory out of western Utah Territory in 1861. Nevada became the 36th state on October 31, 1864, as the second of two states added to the Union during the Civil War. Nevada has a reputation for its libertarian laws. In 1940, with a population of just over 110,000 people, Nevada was by far the least-populated state, with less than half the population of the next least-populated state. However, legalized gambling and lenient marriage and divorce laws transformed Nevada into a major tourist destination in the 20th century.
Nevada is the only U. S. state where prostitution is legal, though it is illegal in Clark County, Washoe County and Carson City. The tourism industry remains Nevada's largest employer, with mining continuing as a substantial sector of the economy: Nevada is the fourth-largest producer of gold in the world; the name "Nevada" comes from meaning "snow-covered", after the Sierra Nevada. Most Nevadans pronounce the second syllable of their state name using the TRAP vowel. Many from outside the Western United States pronounce it with the PALM vowel. Although the latter pronunciation is closer to the Spanish pronunciation, it is not the pronunciation preferred by most Nevadans. State Assemblyman Harry Mortenson proposed a bill to recognize the alternate pronunciation of Nevada, though the bill was not supported by most legislators and never received a vote; the Nevadan pronunciation is the de facto official one, since it is the one used by the state legislature. At one time, the state's official tourism organization, TravelNevada, stylized the name of the state as "Nevăda", with a breve mark over the a indicating the locally preferred pronunciation, available as a license plate design.
Nevada is entirely within the Basin and Range Province, is broken up by many north-south mountain ranges. Most of these ranges have endorheic valleys between them, which belies the image portrayed by the term Great Basin. Much of the northern part of the state is within the Great Basin, a mild desert that experiences hot temperatures in the summer and cold temperatures in the winter. Moisture from the Arizona Monsoon will cause summer thunderstorms; the state's highest recorded temperature was 125 °F in Laughlin on June 29, 1994. The coldest recorded temperature was −52 °F set in San Jacinto in 1972, in the northeastern portion of the state; the Humboldt River crosses the state from east to west across the northern part of the state, draining into the Humboldt Sink near Lovelock. Several rivers drain from the Sierra Nevada eastward, including the Walker and Carson rivers. All of these rivers are endorheic basins, ending in Walker Lake, Pyramid Lake, the Carson Sink, respectively. However, not all of Nevada is within the Great Basin.
Tributaries of the Snake River drain the far north, while the Colorado River, which forms much of the boundary with Arizona, drains much of southern Nevada. The mountain ranges, some of which have peaks above 13,000 feet, harbor lush forests high above desert plains, creating sky islands for endemic species; the valleys are no lower in elevation than 3,000 feet, while some in central Nevada are above 6,000 feet. The southern third of the state, where the Las Vegas area is situated, is within the Mojave Desert; the area is closer to the Arizona Monsoon in the summer. The terrain is lower below 4,000 feet, creating conditions for hot summer days and cool to chilly winter nights. Nevada and California have by far the longest diagonal line as a state boundary at just over 400 miles; this line begins in Lake Tahoe nearly