“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Las Vegas in Clark County, Nevada — The American Mountains (Southwest)

Rafael Rivera

Rafael Rivera Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, March 14, 2010
1. Rafael Rivera Marker
Inscription.  This historical marker commemorates the valor and service of pioneer scout Rafael Rivera, the first Caucasian of record to view and traverse Las Vegas valley. Scouting for Antonia Armijo's sixty man trading party from Abiquiu, N.M. in January 1830. Young Rivera ascended Vegas Wash twenty miles east of this marker and blazed a route to the Mojave River in California by way of the Amargosa River.

Rivera's pioneering route became a vital link in the Old Spanish Trail, with Las Vegas Springs a most essential stop on this popular route to southern California. John C. Fremont mapped the trail in 1844. Three years later, following an extension of the course to Salt Lake Valley, the route became known in this area as the Mormon Trail. Today the Old Spanish Trail closely parallels inter-state route #15.

Erected by Rafael Rivera Monument Committee and Patriotic Citizens. (Marker Number 214.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Old Spanish National Trail marker series.
Location. 36° 5.014′ N,
Rafael Rivera Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, March 14, 2010
2. Rafael Rivera Marker
115° 4.364′ W. Marker is in Las Vegas, Nevada, in Clark County. Marker is on Mountain Vista Street 0.1 miles south of East Russell Road, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5786 Mountain Vista Street, Las Vegas NV 89120, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Little Church of the West (approx. 5.6 miles away); The Welcome To Las Vegas Sign (approx. 5.6 miles away); Green Shack (approx. 5.7 miles away); The "Bugsy Building" (approx. 5.9 miles away); "Bugsy" (approx. 6 miles away); The Shrine of the Four-Faced Brahma (approx. 6.1 miles away); The Red Barn (approx. 6.2 miles away); The Huntridge Neighborhood (approx. 6.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Las Vegas.
Also see . . .  New Amended Text for Marker. The Nevada State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) recently updated the text of the roughly 260 state historical markers in Nevada. The Nevada SHPO placed the amended text of each individual marker on its website and will change the actual markers in the field as funding allows. Minor changes have been made to this marker for grammar, readability, and content. The term Caucasian has been changed to European American. The link will take you to the Nevada SHPO page for the marker with the amended text. (Submitted on October 25, 2013, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.)
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Credits. This page was last revised on November 24, 2019. This page originally submitted on March 26, 2010, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 2,481 times since then and 145 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on March 26, 2010, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.
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