From the Rebels/Wolf Pack rivalry to the education-funding formula and deciding where gaming-tax revenue will go, Nevada’s north/south contention runs deep. And if Nevadans had decided differently on a 1982 ballot measure, that division might have become a geographic reality.
According to Clark County’s website, the Nevada Legislature voted to extend the state’s southern border to include present-day Clark County (then part of the Arizona Territory) in January 1867—more than two years after Nevada’s admission to the Union in October 1864. And then those legislators forgot to cross their Ts and dot their Is.
“The Nevada Constitution had never been amended to reflect the boundary change of 1867,” says UNLV history professor Michael Green. “The people had to vote on the amendment in the early 1980s.” And though Green says while it was never “terribly serious,” some Southern Nevadans were in favor of voting the amendment down and seceding from the state. He even recalls an editorial written by his editor at the defunct Valley Times urging voters against it.
While the amendment obviously passed, we have to say, the Great State of Southern Nevada has a definite ring to it ...