Phoenix is the capital of the southwestern U.S. state of Arizona. Known for its year-round sun and warm temperatures, it anchors a sprawling, multicity metropolitan area known as the Valley of the Sun. It's known for high-end spa resorts, Jack Nicklaus–designed golf courses and vibrant nightclubs. Other highlights include the Desert Botanical Garden, displaying cacti and numerous native plants. The history of the city of Phoenix begins with Jack Swilling, a Confederate veteran of the Civil War. In 1867, while traveling through the Salt River Valley, he saw a potential for farming, much like the military had already cultivated further east, near Fort McDowell. He formed a small community that same year about four miles (six km) east of the present city.