Jews are one of Nevada's most active and influential ethnic minorities, but their vital role in the state's history has not been fully studied until now. Jews were among the state's earliest Euro-American settlers, and helped to build the new towns and the boom-and-bust mining camps. Some established important businesses and participated in the state's embryonic civic life. Others forged a vital commercial and cultural link between Nevada's frontier and San Francisco's cosmopolitan Jewish community. For over a century and a half, Jews have participated in every area of the state's life, as businessmen, agrarians, scholars, educators, artists, politicians, and civic and religious leaders.John P. Marschall has spent almost two decades tracing their story. Using a wide range of sources, including archival records in the U.S. and Europe, personal papers, newspapers, public records, and interviews with a large number of individuals in Nevada's contemporary Jewish communities, Marschall offers an engaging, multilayered account of Jews in Nevada.
We meet such colorful characters as Aachen-born Adolph Sutro, who succeeded against all odds to construct a four-mile-long tunnel to drain the Comstock's deep hard-rock mines; Jacob W. Davis (born Youphes), a Latvian-born tailor whose patented design for durable cotton work pants with copper-riveted pockets became the world-famous Levi's blue jeans; and Moe Dalitz, a Las Vegas casino pioneer whose unscrupulous past was balanced by his leadership in the development of Las Vegas and his generosity to Jewish community causes."Jews in Nevada" is a major addition to the history of the state's peoples and development. Marschall's insights into the Jewish experience in Nevada in comparison with that in the rest of the country make this book significant to readers interested in Nevada and western history, immigration, and ethnic and religious history.