%> Nevada Riches: The Land and People of the Silver State
Nevada Government & Politics


For thousands of years, the Native Americans who inhabited the land that would become Nevada lived together in small bands.  They chose their leaders based on skill and talent.  Crimes were punished by the group, and there was no need for jails or formal court systems like those of Euro-Americans.  Land was not owned by individuals and taxes were not collected.

Euro-American settlers brought their own political structure.  They needed rules and regulations to govern the sale of property.  The rowdy mining and frontier towns required some formal system of law and order.  Like the earliest Europeans migrant to America, some settlers formed basic governments among themselves.  With the establishment of the Utah and Nevada Territories, then the state, government became larger and more formal.  An important part of government is the political process and politics.  Nevada has an interesting history of government and politics, of relations between citizens and federal, state, and local governments.

Reader: Terry Sullivan

Photo Credit:
Library of Congress