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Facts about the United States

Updated on January 17, 2012
  • Growth of the Nation Thirteen colonies clustered at the eastern edge of the beckoning unknown that was America in 1776, aided by the hardy people who carved an uncertain living out of the uncolonized wilderness, fought for the right to design their own political future. Their cause successful, the 13 formed the infant United States of America.
  • By 1959 the 13 states had expanded to 50. Today, those 50 states encompass more than 312,000,000 people.
  • The Great Seal of the United States Adopted 1782. Each element of the seal has symbolic meaning.
  • The bald eagle, the national bird, represents the authority of Congress. The olive branch signifies peace and the arrows military readiness, powers residing with Congress. The shield is a representation of Congress and the states. The 13 original colonies are represented by the stars above the eagle's head and by 13 olives, 13 leaves and 13 arrows. The motto E Pluribus Unum means One Out of Many.
  • A pyramid, signifying strength, appears on the reverse of the seal. The motto here is Novus Ordo Seclorum, A New Order of the Ages. The date 1776 appears in Roman numerals on the base of the pyramid. Above the pyramid is an eye with the words Annuit Coeptis, meaning He Has Favored Our Undertakings.
  • The great seal is used on all treaties and proclamations. It also appears on one-dollar bills.
  • The Flag Adopted 14th of June 1777. This flag had 13 white stars on a field of blue and 13 red and white stripes, signifying the original 13 colonies. The number of stars increased with the admission of territories to statehood. The latest addition, bringing the total to 50 stars, came in 1959.
  • The popular tradition that Betsy Ross designed the original flag is of uncertain origin.
  • The National Anthem Officially adopted in 1931. Words were written by Francis Scott Key, 14th of September 1814. The tune is an English song by John Stafford Smith, To Anacreon in Heaven.
  • The Statue of Liberty Designed by F. A. Bartholdi and presented to the USA in 1884 by the Franco-American Union. The statue, exclusive of its 150-foot base, stands 152 feet tall. It is located on Liberty Island in the harbor of New York City.
  • A physical fact In an east-west direction, the United States south of Canada measures 2,807 miles at its widest point, from Cape Alava, Washington, to West Quoddy Head, Maine. In a north-south direction, from Lake of the Woods projection, Minnesota, to the southernmost point along the Gulf Coast, the distance is 1,598 miles.

The states are listed by order of their admission to the Union

#
State
Year
1
Delaware
1787
2
Pennsylvania
1787
3
New Jersey
1787
4
Georgia
1788
5
Connecticut
1788
6
Massachusetts
1788
7
Maryland
1788
8
South Carolina
1788
9
New Hampshire
1788
10
Virginia
1788
11
New York
1788
12
North Carolina
1789
13
Rhode Island
1790
14
Vermont
1791
15
Kentucky
1792
16
Tennessee
1796
17
Ohio
1803
18
Louisiana
1812
19
Indiana
1816
20
Mississippi
1817
21
Illinois
1818
22
Alabama
1819
23
Maine
1820
24
Missouri
1821
25
Arkansas
1836
26
Michigan
1837
27
Florida
1845
28
Texas
1845
29
Iowa
1846
30
Wisconsin
1848
31
California
1850
32
Minnesota
1858
33
Oregon
1859
34
Kansas
1861
35
West Virginia
1863
36
Nevada
1864
37
Nebraska
1867
38
Colorado
1876
39
North Dakota
1889
40
South Dakota
1889
41
Montana
1889
42
Washington
1889
43
Idaho
1890
44
Wyoming
1890
45
Utah
1896
46
Oklahoma
1907
47
New Mexico
1912
48
Arizona
1912
49
Alaska
1959
50
Hawaii
1959

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    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 5 years ago from Planet Earth

      I know several kids & even a few adults who could use this brief guide! Good job!