Las Vegas – A Brief History

las vegas sign

Las Vegas, which in Spanish means “The Meadows,” was named by Spaniards in the Antonio Armijo party, who used water from the area while heading north and west along the Old Spanish Trail from Texas. In 1844, John C. Fremont traveled into the Las Vegas Valley, while it was still part of Mexico. He was a leader of a group of scientists, scouts, and other observers for the United States Army Corps of Engineers.

In 1855, Brigham Young assigned 30 missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to the area in attempts to convert the Paiute Indian population to Mormonism. A small fort was built near the current downtown area, serving as a stopover for weary travelers along the “Mormon Corridor.” Las Vegas was then established as a railroad town in 1905 when 110 acres was auctioned off in what is now downtown Las Vegas.

Las Vegas was part of Lincoln County until 1909 when it became part of newly established Clark County. In March of 1911, Vegas became an incorporated city. Twenty years later in 1931, gambling was legalized in the city, and the opening of Bugsy Siegel’s Flamingo Hotel signified the jumpstart of America’s most famous city. Though many of the tried and faithful citizens of America won’t admit it, this country owes the mafia for Vegas’ current popularity. Since gambling was legalized in Vegas, all of the original large casinos were managed, or at least funded by American mob figures Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lansky.

At a time when gambling was taking place in saloons and various other not-so-friendly establishments, no doubt a carryover from the wild-west, Vegas offered a relatively safe environment for the “everyman” type of gambler. Even though Bugsy and Lansky were revered mobsters, Vegas experienced little violence. As businessmen, they knew to separate their mob mentality from their business savvy sense.

On December 26th, 1946, the long road which held Siegel’s Flamingo and the Pair-o Dice Club, was named “the Strip.” The Strip of today strictly refers to Las Vegas Boulevard, roughly between Sahara Avenue and Russell Road – a distance of 4.1 miles. Though, sometimes this term is used to describe Vegas properties as a whole, such as “Bellagio on the Strip,” etc.

The Strip was and still is the only road tourist and regulars need take. Everything to be seen in Las Vegas can be found on the Strip. Knowing that Vegas would be a great tourist attraction, mega-investors of the era started purchasing old properties and building lavish property in the 1960s.

Many famous Hollywood celebrities, along with other notable names and faces of the time, began to flock to Las Vegas. Perhaps the most popular frequent visitors Vegas has ever known are the Rat Pack (Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford, and Joey Bishop). Though their presence helped keep the “mafia image” alive in Vegas, the public at the time seemed enthralled by this and began to visit Vegas by the millions.

Vegas is now America’s most famous city by far, and billion-dollar casinos tower over the town, forever changing the landscape. While Las Vegas continues to be the most likely choice for the majority of the people to visit casinos, online casinos offer almost the same experience, while providing an increased chance of winning!

An online casino such as leovegas has real casino dealers with some of the most futuristic and hi-tech features. Online casinos continue to be more safe, secure and easy to use.

While we do not promote gambling in any way, it is an experience that is thrilling and can be fun once in a while if you remember that it is just that.

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