1922 Encyclopædia Britannica/Nevada
NEVADA (see 19.450).—The pop. in 1920 was 77,407; in 1910, 81,875, a decrease of 4,468, or 5.5% as against an increase of 93.4% for the preceding decade. The native whites in 1920 numbered 55,897; foreign-born whites 14,802; Indians 4,907. The density of pop. in 1920 was 0.7 per sq. mile. The urban pop. (in places having more than 2,500 inhabitants) was 19.7%, the rural 80.3%. Reno, with a pop. of 12,016, an increase of 10.6% over the 1910 figures (10,367), was the only city having more than 5,000 inhabitants.
of farm property increased 1910-20 from $60,399,365 to $99,779,666. The value of crops harvested more than doubled from 1915 to 1920 largely owing to higher prices. In 1919 and 1920 the value of agricultural products surpassed mineral production with every indication that this predominance would continue. Sheep and cattle form Nevada's most important agricultural output. The Agricultural Experiment Station at the university of Nevada, the Department of Range Management, a state Board of Stock Commissioners, the state Veterinary Control Service, the Agricultural Extension Division of the university and the Federal Bureau of Animal Industry—all show rapid development of experimental research as to poisonous plants, the handling of live stock on white-sage ranges, the haemorrhagic disease of cattle which is peculiar to the Pacific slope and inter-mountain country, tuberculosis control, particularly among dairy herds and pure-bred beef herds, and the control of rabies. Predatory animals are abundant in so thinly settled a state and rabies infection from them, especially the coyote, is a constant menace to domestic stock. A state Sheep Commission enforces quarantine laws. Nevada honey has a high reputation but is limited in amount because alfalfa, the chief honey plant in Nevada, is cutbefore it has fully bloomed.
one of the most pressing needs. The riparian law, common to England and the eastern states, was found to be ill-suited to Nevada. Early state laws, therefore, gave vested rights in water to those who used it for irrigation. Increase of settlement led to difficulties of adjudication and during the decade 1910-20 many of these have been settled by the courts. The result will be to make available more irrigable land and thereby to increase the population which can comfortably be supported thereon. The fuller use of Lake Tahoe for storage was in 1921 a subject of negotiation with California. The Colorado river project includes five other states with Nevada. The first unit proposed by this plan to provide for irrigation, flood control and power is a great reservoir to be created by building a 700-ft. dam at Boulder Canyon, Nevada. Legislation for this purpose was being considered by Congress early in 1921. The development of underground waters has been encouraged by the state since 1915 through study by commissions, through Irrigation District and Drainage District laws and through enactments favouring the sinking of artesian wells. The Pittman Act of Congress offers favourable conditions for the acquirement of public lands in Nevada through the development of underground waters. Since 1919 California andNevada have maintained a coöperative snow survey.
increased until it reached its peak in 1917, in which year gold, silver, copper, lead and zinc were produced to the value of $54,424,580. In 1919 production decreased more than 50% from that of 1918, owing to a variety of causes which included exhaustion of ore bodies, scarcity of labour, decline in metal prices and high operating costs. Exhaustion was so rapid that the production of gold declined from 551,683 fine oz. in 1915 to 219,695 in 1919. During the same period production of silver declined from 14,459,840 fine oz. to 6,863,580. Until 1918 copper production increased remarkably, being 68,636,370 lb. in 1915 and 122,794,704 lb. in 1917. This had declined in 1919to 52,331,175 lb., chiefly owing to the sharp fall in market value.
tungsten producing mines. At the time of the signing of the Armistice in 1918, it appeared the Nevada could supply the United Stateswith that metal. When the World War terminated the price
suspension of all tungsten mining in the state. Mining in Nevada in 1920 and 1921 was in a greatly depressed state. All copper-mines suspended production, as did most lead and zinc operations. Production of gold and silver materially decreased, and those metals were the only two the state continued to produce extensively. The high price of silver which prevailed well into the middle of 1920 kept alive the production of that metal. Although in 1919 there were produced only 6,863,580 fine oz. as compared with 10,000,599 in 1918, the gross value for 1919 was not greatly diminished because of high market price. In 1919 silver averaged in value $1.12 per fine ounce. In 1920 oriental purchases so largely declined that the market dropped below the price fixed in the Pittman Silver Purchase Act. This law then enabled producers to sell their silver to the U.S. Mint at the fixed price of $1 per fine oz., and to continue production which otherwise would have ceased. Much attention was devoted to the so-called commercial minerals. While statistics were not available, it was known in 1921 that gypsum, fluorspar, diatomaceous and fuller's earths, alum, potash, sulphur and other rock products were being produced in commercial quantities.
Other minerals commercially developed were quicksilver, antimony, manganese and platinum. The principal silver-producing district is Tonopah, Nye county, but there is also extensive production at Virginia City, Storey county; Rochester, Pershing county; Eureka, Eureka county; and Pioche, Lincoln county. Most of Nevada's gold comes from Tonopah, Manhattan and Round mountain in Nye county, Goldfield in Esmeralda county; Virginia City, Gold Hill, and Silver City in Storey county; and Jarbridge and Gold Circle in Elko county. Copper is produced chiefly in the Ely district in White Pine county. The Mason Valley district in Lyon county and the Luning district in Mineral county have extensive deposits. Lead mines are located principally in Eureka, Mineral, Clark and Lincoln counties. Zinc comes almost entirely from Clark and Lincoln counties. The larger tungsten deposits are in Pershing, Humboldt, Mineral and White Pine counties. Quicksilver is found principally in Nye and Mineral counties. Platinum is mined at Good Springs in Clark county. Since 1919 extensive developments have been carried out at Gold Hill on the Comstock Lode in Storey county, and give promise of an extensive revival of precious metal output in that district, which was formerly of great importance.
The value of all manufactured products increased 35.3% between 1909 and 1914 and 42.2% between 1914 and 1919, but the value added Jay manufacture in 1919 showed a decrease from 1914 of 5.7%,due to the decrease in the smelting and refining of copper.
acquired a part of the Nevada-California-Oregon line and has altered it to broad gauge, thus making connexion with Reno, the largest town in the state. Several short lines have been built. The Las Vegas and Tonopah Railway Co. discontinued operation from Beatty to Las Vegas in 1918. The Legislature of 1919 designated the line as part of the state highway system and the Highway Department acquired the road bed, which in 1921 was being converted into a modern highway. Under the Federal Aid Road Act of 1916 $962,684 became available for use in Nevada, and by the amendment of 1919 an additional sum of $2,564,591. The state took steps to provide its quota and the Overland Trail Club received promises of further aid from California and from the Lincoln Highway Association. The frequency of waterspouts in some areas and of drift sand in others presented difficulties which were being overcome by the state Highway Commission. A scenic highway was opened on the W. side of Walker lake as a part of the North-South highway. The Phipps Highway bill, before Congress early in 1921, provided for Government aid in proportion to area of public lands in the state, and should greatly promote road building in Nevada, since 90.6% of the area of the state was still at the time Federal property. The Railroad and Public Service Commission of Nevada was seeking to render permanent the elimination of the “back-haul rates” removed by the Interstate Commerce Commission in March 1918. The intermountain region was asking for “graded rates” in 1921. The 25% increase in freight rates, in Aug. 1920, resulted in the cessation ofmuch mining activity and a loss of markets for live stock.
extended through numerous commissions and a few new departures, such as the industrial school and the grant of state aid to the Florence Crittenton Home. The Nevada Historical Society, made a state institution in 1907, has published six volumes of historical papers besides numerous pamphlets. The Orphans' Home is noteworthy in that it educates its children in public schools and does not dress them in uniform. The necessity of securing increased public revenues and equalizing the burden of taxation gave rise to the Tax Commission in 1913. Nevada was one of the first states to have industrial insurance. An extensive building programme for state institutions was begun in 1917. It includes new prison and asylum structures, a Heroes' Memorial Building, additions to the Orphans' Home and the Nevada School of Industry, and several new buildings at the university of Nevada. A branch of the Federal Bureau of Mining Extension was removed in 1920 from Colorado to the university of Nevada. All Federal experimental work relating to rare and preciousmetals is conducted at this station, which works coöperatively with
station was installed to serve the air mail service. Several public service divisions have been added to the extension work of the University, which joined the Association of American Universities.
The salary of Nevada teachers advanced about 50% between 1914 and 1920, reaching an average of $1,362 in the latter year. Retirement salary provision, consolidation of schools, standardization of small schools, evening schools for Americanization, vocational education including part-time training, industrial rehabilitation and thrift education were among the progressive movements undertaken. The bonded debt of the state, Jan. 1 1921, was $1,382,500. In 1915 the constitution was amended to permit a state debt amounting to 1% of assessed valuation of property. The state receipts for 1920 were $1,874,447, and the assessed valuation of all property in thestate was $213,421,398.
History.—The Progressive party maintained an organization in Nevada in 1912 which polled a vote second to that of the Democrats. The Democratic party continued in undivided power until the election of 1920 gave many important offices to Republican candidates. Emmet D. Boyle, Democrat, was elected governor in 1915 and re-elected in 1910.
Amendments to the constitution of Nevada were made in 1909, 1911, 1913, 1915, and 1919. The most important were those for the recall and female suffrage in 1911 and 1913. The state prohibition law was enacted, pursuant to a direct vote of the people cast Nov. 5 1918. The Legislature ratified the 16th Amendment (income tax) to the Constitution of the United States in 1911, the 17th (direct election of senators) in 1913, the 18th (prohibition) in 1919 and in the same year endorsed the proposed woman suffrage amendment. In a special session held Feb. 7 1920 it ratified the 19th Amendment (woman suffrage). Legislative sessions are limited to 60 days. Budget legislation was adopted in the session of 1919 and amended in 1921. The state is divided into 17 counties, two new ones having been created in 1911 and 1919. In 1921 a four-year term of office was provided for county officers. The same session provided for criminal execution by use of lethal gas.
In the World War Nevada furnished 5,535 men to the army, navy and marine corps, of whom 3,211 were inductions, 2,324 volunteers. Only one state, Montana, surpassed Nevada in the percentage of men contributed. Nevada gave 160.4% surplus of volunteers, one out of every 9 men of military age, one out of every 33 inhabitants. A surplus of 304.7% above the true proportion was given to the draft, and the selected men were turned over to the military authorities without expense to the Federal Government. The following figures show the amount subscribed in the five Liberty loans: First, $2,943,750; Second, $3,472,200; Third, $4,793,400; Fourth, $5,996,150; Fifth, $3,668,700; a total of $20,874,200, nearly five millions more than the state's quota. In 1919 the Legislature passed a land settlement Act providing a bond issue of $1,000,000 for soldier settlement work in coöperation with the Federal Government.