Primm (formerly known as State Line and often called Primm Valley, after one of its casinos) is an unincorporated community in District A of Clark County, Nevada, United States, primarily notable for its position straddling Interstate 15 where it crosses the state border between California and Nevada. It sits on Ivanpah Dry Lake, which extends to the north and south of town.
It was previously known by the name of State Line (two words), but was renamed in 1996 to avoid confusion with Stateline in northern Nevada. It is named after the original developer of the town, the casino owner Ernest Jay Primm.
The community's economy is based on its three casinos, which attract gamblers from Southern California wanting to stop before reaching Las Vegas to the north, or as a last chance to gamble before leaving Nevada. The community's hotels also serve as reliever hotels on the occasions when Las Vegas hosts major conventions. Most of Primm's residents are employees of the casinos.
While not a census-designated place, the 2000 census population for the community is 436. A Clark County Comprehensive Planning Department estimate placed the population at 284 on July 1, 2006, apparently using different boundaries for the area. In a December 5, 2007 article in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Primm's population is listed as around 1,132.
The borders of Jean, Nevada extend south very close to Primm, so that the post office serving Primm (zip code 89019) on the northern edge of town actually has a Jean address.
The community of Primm made an appearance in the 2010 role-playing video game developed by Obsidian Entertainment and published by Bethesda Softworks. The game is based in a post-apocalyptic environment in and around Las Vegas. Notable locations include Bison Steve's Hotel, a reference to Buffalo Bill's Resort and Casino.
In the 1920s Pete MacIntyre owned a gas station at the state line. MacIntyre apparently had a difficult time making ends meet selling gas, so he resorted to bootlegging. Primm history remembers him as "Whiskey Pete". When he died in 1933, legend has it that he wanted to be buried standing up with a bottle of bootleg in his hands so he could watch over the area. Whiskey Pete's unmarked grave was accidentally exhumed while workers were building a connecting bridge from Whiskey Pete's to Buffalo Bill's Hotel and Casino (on the other side of I-15). The body was moved and is now said to be buried in one of the caves where MacIntyre cooked up his moonshine. Dale Hamilton owned State Line from the early 1950s to the early 1970s. After he bought the property he built a Chevron gas station, a building containing a small slots casino and a small cafe-lunch counter. He also built a small automotive garage and a towing service. He called the business simply "State Line Bar:Slots". When the Interstate was built an interchange was not planned for the site. Hamilton made several trips to Carson City to plead for an interchange, which was eventually granted. In 1996, SCORE International started hosting an annual off-road race known as Terrible's SCORE Primm 300. The Primm 300 is one in a series of annual off-road races that include the Baja 1000, Baja 500, San Felipe 250 and the Laughlin Desert Challenge.
In 1997, the 20th World's Strongest Man competition was held in Primm.
In 2004, under MGM Mirage ownership, 52 apartment buildings were constructed in Primm to serve as housing for employees at the three casinos. The name of the complex is the Desert Oasis, and its address is 355 E. Primm Boulevard. Previously, employee housing did exist, but trailers were used instead of apartments.
Primm was the end location for the 2004 DARPA Grand Challenge. Additionally, it was the starting and ending location for the 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge. The $2 million prize was won by a team from Stanford University.