Las Vegas, Nevada: A Photographic Portraitby Randa Bishop (Photographer)
Rafael Rivera couldn�t believe his eyes. Traveling with Spanish traders on their way to California in the early 1700�s, he was the first to stumble across it � an oasis in the middle of Nevada�s stark and sizzling desert valley where natural springs bubbled up, creating an abundant water supply and tall, wild grasses. The valley was named �Las Vegas,� Spanish for �The Meadows.� By 1905, the town of Las Vegas, with eight-hundred residents, was founded. Six years later, the fate of the town was sealed when the Nevada state legislature passed two landmark laws. First, gambling was legalized; and, second, divorce laws were liberalized so that �quickie� divorces could be acquired after six weeks of residency. Awaiting their freedom, these short-term residents stayed at dude ranches, the forerunners of the hotels that populate the Strip today. The invention of neon signs in the 1940�s gave Las Vegas a flashy, new way to flaunt its attractions. Soon crayon-colored signs, each bigger and brighter than the next, decorated the Strip, beckoning motorists from miles away. It�s obvious that our photographer, Randa Bishop, loves Las Vegas, because no matter where she points her camera, the resulting image is beautiful and memorable. �Las Vegas: A Photographic Portrait,� shows you the many moods of Las Vegas and other Nevada attractions. Page after page will draw you into the treasures and forbidden delights of the biggest resorts on the Strip. You�ll visit the rest of the city, where ordinary people live. You�ll take special trips to Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, and journey into the spectacular scenery of Red Rock Canyon. A book filled with memorable images awaits you�just turn the pages and enjoy.
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