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Of the 69,000 Jews in the state, the majority lives in Las Vegas and the rest in Reno. Jews came mostly from California to Nevada in the mid-19th century in search of gold and silver. In 1862, a B’nai B’rith lodge was established in Virginia City, and in 1869, services were held in Carson City. In the first half of the 20th century there was little influx of Jews to the state, but as Las Vegas became a major entertainment and gambling center, the Jewish population grew rapidly, with many working in the hotel and tourist industry. There are two Conservative and two Reform congregations in Las Vegas, and one each in Reno. Las Vegas has two Jewish newspapers, the Las Vegas Israelite and the Jewish Reporter.

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