The 1950s was an era of rapid development for Las Vegas. By the mid-1950s, Las Vegas became one of the best tourist destinations in the United States. Over 10 million people were visiting the city annually. New hotels and casinos were opening, mob owners, gamblers, and businessmen were investing in casinos and hotels. Hollywood stars, musicians, dancers, and entertainers performed in the hotels and intimate settings, and Las Vegas became the favorite city of stars after Los Angeles.
Even mob owners hired their favorite stars into the parties and events to grace the people. They also hired entertainment directors, dancers, stagehands, costumers, and everyone else needed to put on a first-rate show. In 1955, the Gaming Control Board was set up to regulate and tax the casinos and other types of gaming.
The following photos show capture Las Vegas in the 1950s. Also check Las Vegas in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.
#1 A group stands at The Sands craps table, Las Vegas, 1959
#2 View west along Fremont Street near the intersection of South 2nd, Las Vegas, 1953
#3 Mae West backstage during her nightclub debut at Sahara Las Vegas, 1954
#4 View of the illuminated sign of casinos and hotels along Fremont Street, Las Vegas, 1955
#5 Jayne Mansfield with Rita Moreno and Gloria Paul at the roulette table in the Dunes casino, Las Vegas, 1955
#6 Frank Sinatra with crew and band in 1955 at the Sands Hotel Las Vegas.
#7 Actress and model Kitty Dolan at the pool of The Tropicana Hotel in 1958 in Las Vegas
#8 View of patrons as they play slot machines at the Glittering Gulch Casino, Las Vegas, 1955.
#9 Neon signs advertising casinos and clubs on Fremont Street in Las Vegas, 1955
#10 Austrian actress Mara Lane lounging by the pool in a red and white striped bathing costume at the Sands Hotel, Las Vegas, 1954.
#11 General view of Downtown Las Vegas from Fremont Street looking at the Golden Nugget Gambling Hall, The Mint, Pioneer Club, Lucky Strike, The Las Vegas Club and The Hotel Apache circa 1958
#12 Two young women give away a little too much in a game of cards at the Silver Slipper casino in Las Vegas, 1953
#13 The Copa Girls perform in Las Vegas Sands Casino, November 1959.
#14 Marlene Dietric performing on stage in Las Vegas, 1953.
#15 Swimmers look through underwater portholes in a pool at an unidentified hotel, Las Vegas, 1955
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The Glass Pool Inn was the name of the hotel. It even had a window in the bar so you can see into the pool.
#16 Showgirl and burlesque dancer Dale Strong, Las Vegas, 1952.
#17 Showgirl and burlesque dancer sitting on a chair, Las Vegas, 1952
#18 Jayne Mansfield poses in a bikini by a lifeguard chair at the Dunes Hotel, Las Vegas, 1950s
#19 Men working in 99th Air Base Wing, Las Vegas, 1958
#20 Roberta Sherwood singing at the Riverside Night, Las Vegas, 1956.
#21 Dale Strong before her performance, Las Vegas, 1952.
#22 Actress and model Kitty Dolan poses next to a 1958 Ford Edsel Citation outside The Tropicana Hotel, Las Vegas, 1958.
#23 Two female nightclub performers sing on stage at The Sands circa 1958 in Las Vegas
#24 Newlyweds exit a chapel in Las Vegas where they just pronounced tehri wedding vows, 1951
#25 Showgirls Joy Skylar and Florence Walters practicing for the special showgirl golf tournament to be held at the Desert Inn Country Club, Las Vegas, 1953
#26 A model poses next to a 1954 Buick Roadmaster outside the Sands Hotel in 1955 in Las Vegas
#27 Women playing Jennings Sun Cheif Slot Machines in a crowded room at the Desert Inn Casino, Las Vegas, 1953
#28 A view of Downtown Las Vegas from freemont Street in 1958 in Las Vegas
#29 Austrian actress Mara Lane lounging by the pool in a red and white striped bathing costume at the Sands Hotel, Las Vegas, 1954.
#30 Boulder Club, one of the oldest casinos in Las Vegas, 1950
#31 Jayne Mansfield shopping with her dogs at a supermarket in Las Vegas, 1959
#32 Musicians perform on stage behind the bar in the Riviera casino, Las Vegas, 1955.
#33 Christine Jorgensen, posing in a bathing suit at the Hotel Sahara Pool in Las Vegas, 1955.
#34 Riviera Hotel, Las Vegas, 1957.
#35 Actress Terry Moore, wearing the gown in which she made her nightclub debut in Las Vegas, 1954
#36 Airborne division troops watch an atomic explosion at close range at the AEC’s testing grounds in the Las Vegas desert, 1951.
#37 Austrian actress Mara Lane enjoys waiter service in the pool at the Sands Hotel, Las Vegas, 1954.
#38 Actress Betty Hutton with her daughter, Candy (left) and hotelier Wilbur Clark with her daughter, Lindsey (right) in the pool of Clark’s hotel, Las Vegas, 1956.
#39 A crowd checks the results of horse races all over the USA at a Las Vegas betting shop, 1954.
#40 Jayne Mansfield buying an ice cream with her dogs in Las Vegas, 1959.
#41 Actoress Elizabeth Taylor watches her fiance Eddie Fisher as he performs on stage at the Tropicana in Las Vegas, 1959.
#42 A view of Las Vegas Strip with clubs and casinos, 1958.
#43 A Las Vegas showgirl poses in the dressing room before a show in 1956 at the Las Vegas Club.
#44 Actress Jayne Mansfield at the roulette table in 1958 in Las Vegas.
#45 Chapel for immediate marriages, Las Vegas, 1950.
#46 Photographer Slim Aarons photographing film starlet Mara Lane from the top of an extending ladder by the swimming pool at Sands Hotel, Las Vegas, 1954.
#47 Entertainer Mae Westmaking her nightclub debut with loin-clothed dancers at Hotel Sahara, Las Vegas, 1951.
#48 The Bluebell Girls, performing above the audience at the Stardust Hotel, Las Vegas, 1958
#49 These four young women are selling tickets to the Tournament of Champions to be played next month at Wilbur Clark’s Desert Inn Country Club, Las Vegas, 1957.
#50 Las Vegas Chorus Girl, Kim Smith playing in the snow with her friend, 1954.
#51 Outdoor gaming tables of the Royal Nevada Hotel, 1955.
#52 Aerial view over the parking lot of the Rivera Hotel and surrounding desert, Las Vegas, Nevada, 1955.
#53 Woman golfer in short shorts stands next to a model of a slot machine on the golf course, Las Vegas, 1956.
#54 Elevated view of the ‘Queen of Las Vegas’ float as it drives past onlookers during the Hellolorado Parade, Las Vegas, 1950.
#55 Las Vegas chorus showgirls performing at the Dunes Nightclub, 1955.
#56 American actor and singer Rudy Vallee and his wife, Eleanor Norris, relaxing poolside at the El Rancho Vegas resort, 1950.
#57 Helldorado Days, Las Vegas, May 11, 1951
#58 A young girl looks at patrons and slot machines through the plate-glass windows at the ‘House of Jack Pots,’ Las Vegas, 1955.
#59 American opera singer, Marguerite Piazza, watching guests play roulette at the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas, 1955.
#60 Biff’s Las Vegas Club and The Mint, on Fremont Street in Downtown Las Vegas, 1959.
#61 Leggy hoofers called the Saharem Dancers doing a precision number in the new Sahara Hotel, 1952.
#62 The Overland Hotel, Biff’s Las Vegas Club and the Golden Gate casino on Fremont Street in Downtown Las Vegas, 1959.
#63 Kid’s parade Helldorado Days, Las Vegas, May 11, 1951.
#64 The outdoor pool and patio scene at the Thunderbird Resort, Las Vegas, 1956.
#65 Jayne Mansfield at the Dunes Hotel, Las Vegas, 1950s.
#66 Wilbur Clark’s Desert Inn viewed from the parking lot, Las Vegas, 1952.
#67 Las Vegas Street Scene, January 1950
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This can’t be 1950, the Mint and Fremont didn’t exist in 1950.