VAIL M. PITTMAN, the nineteenth governor of Nevada, was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi, on September 17, 1883. His education was attained at the University of the South and Brown’s Business College. Pittman established a successful publishing career, eventually becoming the owner and editor of several newspapers. He first entered politics as a member of the Nevada State Senate, a position he held from 1925 to 1928. He also served as the lieutenant governor of Nevada from 1943 to 1945. On July 24, 1945, Governor Edward P. Carville resigned from office, and Pittman, who was the lieutenant governor at the time, assumed the duties of acting governor. He was elected to a term of his own in 1946. During his tenure, the state became the nation’s leading producer of tungsten; and the development of the Las Vegas strip continued to increase. After running unsuccessfully for reelection, Pittman left office on January 2, 1951. He continued to stay politically active, running unsuccessfully for governor in 1954, and serving as a member of the 1960 Democratic National Committee. Governor Vail M. Pittman passed away on January 29, 1964, and was buried in the Masonic Memorial Gardens in Reno, Nevada.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.