The town of Alamo is located on U.S. Highway 93 in the Pahranagat Valley, an oasis in southwestern Lincoln County, approximately 100 miles north of Las Vegas. The town was named for its numerous cottonwood trees, “alamo” being the Spanish word for the tree. Established in 1905-06 by Latter-day Saints (Mormons) as a cooperative settlement, its main economic basis for more than fifty years was agriculture. Several large ranches operated in the valley, far removed from Nevada’s more prominent livestock ranges in the northern part of the state.

After the 1950s, Alamo’s isolation was modified by the establishment of the Nevada Test Site (NTS). Some workers at NTS Area 51 made Alamo a base of operations. The community’s proximity to the testing ground became a cause for concern in Alamo after several radioactive clouds drifted over the region following the detonation of atomic devices at the NTS. Subsequently, the U.S. government compensated some residents when radiation exposure was revealed. The Key Pittman Wildlife Management Area and Ash Springs are nearby.

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