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Where is the nation’s first wild burro refuge located?

By Richard Moreno

The Great Nevada stay-in-place quiz: How well do you know your state?

For the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing Nevada trivia questions to help pass the time while we’re all staying in place (or should the order be lifted, to at least see how well you know the Silver State).

The questions will appear first, followed by the answers.

Now, let’s see how well you know your state.

1. Where did the world’s first execution by lethal gas take place?

2. In the courthouse of what former mining town did convicted murderer Charles Manson once carve his initials?

3. What famed western artist-writer was once arrested in Nevada for cattle rustling and spent time in the Nevada State Prison?

4. Where in Nevada is the nation’s first formally recognized federal Wild Burro refuge?

5. How many official state flag designs has Nevada had?

6. What is Nevada’s official state semi-precious stone?

7. What is Nevada’s official state reptile?

8. What is Nevada’s official state flower?

9. What is Nevada’s official state animal?

10. How large is Nevada?

11. How many counties are in Nevada?

12. What is Nevada’s least populated county?

Answers:

1. Nevada holds the macabre distinction of being the first place in the world to carry out an execution using lethal gas. The condemned was a convicted murderer named Gee Jon, who was executed at the Nevada State Prison in Carson City in 1924.

2. Manson once scratched his initials into a wall of the Belmont Courthouse, now a state park.

3. Before he was famous, beloved Western writer Will James was convicted of cattle rustling near Ely in 1914 and served a year in the state prison.

4. Marietta Wild Burro Range in Mineral County was the first. The 68,000-acre area has between 78 and 104 wild burros that roam freely near Teels Marsh and the historic ghost town of Marietta.

5. Four. The first, used from 1905 to 1915, was a simple design with gold and silver stars and the words “Nevada,” “Silver” and “Gold” on a blue background. The second, in use from 1915 to 1929, retained the blue background but featured an elaborate version of the state seal in the center. The third, used from 1929 to 1991, had a cobalt blue background with a simple design of two sprigs of sagebrush, a silver star, a banner with the words “Battle Born” and the state’s name encircling the star. The fourth and current flag is a slight variation of the third flag but with the state’s name beneath the star.

6. Turquoise, often called the “Jewel of the Desert,” is the state’s semi-precious stone. It can be found in several places in the state, including near Tonopah, near Austin and in Mineral County.

7. The desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizi) is the official reptile. The tortoise is an endangered species found in the southern part of the state. It can live to be more than 70 years old.

8. Despite looking like a bush or shrub, sagebrush (specifically the Artemisia tridentate) is the official state flower. A member of the aster plant family, it has been the state flower since 1917.

9. The desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis nelsoni) is the state’s official state animal. The animals can be found in many of the state’s highest mountain ranges.

10. Nevada is 110,540 square miles or 70,264,320 acres. It measures 485 miles from top to bottom and is 315 miles across at its widest point. It is the seventh largest state in the nation in terms of size.

11. There are 17 counties in Nevada, including Carson City (a combined city-county), Churchill, Clark, Douglas, Elko, Esmeralda, Eureka, Humboldt, Lander, Lincoln, Lyon, Mineral, Nye, Pershing, Storey, Washoe and White Pine.

12. Esmeralda County, with a mere 981 souls, is the least populated county in the state. Next is Eureka County, with 1,830, and Storey County, with 3,941 people.

Rich Moreno writes about the places and people that make Nevada special.