Forty-eight of the fifty states and the federal district are contiguous and located in North America between Canada and Mexico. The state of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east, the state of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean, the geography and wildlife of the country are extremely diverse. At 3.8 million square miles and with over 324 million people, the United States is the worlds third- or fourth-largest country by area, third-largest by land area. It is one of the worlds most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, paleo-Indians migrated from Asia to the North American mainland at least 15,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century, the United States emerged from 13 British colonies along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the following the Seven Years War led to the American Revolution. On July 4,1776, during the course of the American Revolutionary War, the war ended in 1783 with recognition of the independence of the United States by Great Britain, representing the first successful war of independence against a European power.
The current constitution was adopted in 1788, after the Articles of Confederation, the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, were ratified in 1791 and designed to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties. During the second half of the 19th century, the American Civil War led to the end of slavery in the country. By the end of century, the United States extended into the Pacific Ocean. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the status as a global military power. The end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the sole superpower. The U. S. is a member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States. The United States is a developed country, with the worlds largest economy by nominal GDP. It ranks highly in several measures of performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP. While the U. S. economy is considered post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge economy, the United States is a prominent political and cultural force internationally, and a leader in scientific research and technological innovations.
In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America after the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci
Ofu and Olosega are parts of a volcanic doublet in the Manu‘a Group of the Samoan Islands—part of American Samoa. The twin islands, formed from volcanoes, have a combined length of 6 km. They are geographic volcanic remnants separated by the narrow 137-meter-wide Asaga strait, before 1970, one had to wade between the two islands at low tide, now a single-lane road bridge over the strait connects villages on Ofu island with those on Olosega. The highest peak on Ofu is Mount Tumutumu and the highest elevation on Olosega is Mount Piumafua, the most recent volcanic eruption took place in 1866,3 km south east of Olosega. This included samples of red-slipped plainware ceramics that appeared to be in the tradition of the Lapita culture. The work, carried out by a team that included Pacific archaeology specialist Patrick Vinton Kirch, focused on a site called Toaga, the results showed continuous human habitation of about 3,000 years. Ofu is the part of the volcanic outcrop of Ofu-Olosega Island. The main village of Ofu is located on the western shore, Ofu has a small airport and a boat harbor that serve the population on Ofu and Olosega.
Before regular airline service was discontinued in 2009, the flight from Pago Pago took about half an hour, most of the southern shore and associated coral reef are part of the National Park of American Samoa. In 2005 the U. S. National Park Service was negotiating with village councils on Olosega to expand the park around that island, the island forms the Ofu County subdivision of the Manua District. It has an area of 7.215 km², and had an official population of 289 persons as of the 2000 census. Situated on the south coast of the island is Toaga lagoon which has a diversity of corals. The marine site has been part of long research and study on coral reefs. The island is home to the Samoa Flying-fox, a species of bat threatened by habitat loss. Olosega Island is a remnant of the Sili shield volcano, the caldera of which may lie submerged off the north shore, the volcanic eruption of 1866 was actually 3 km east of Olosega, on a submarine ridge that extends east southeast to nearby Ta‘ū. The island forms the Olosega County subdivision of the Manua District and it has a land area of 5.163 km², and had an official population of 216 persons as of the 2000 census.
There are three villages on Olosega, Lalomoana and Faiava Gallery Ofu-Olosega Archaeology in Samoa Office of the Governor, Office of the Governor, American Samoa Government
High Court of American Samoa
The High Court of American Samoa is a Samoan court and the highest court below the United States Supreme Court in American Samoa. The Court is located in the capital of Fagatogo and it consists of one chief justice and one associate justice, appointed by the United States Secretary of the Interior, holding office during good behavior and removable for cause. The High Court of American Samoa has several Samoan associate judges who sit with the two justices, two associate judges will sit with the chief justice and associate justice on every case. The Secretary of the Interior retains ultimate authority over the courts, the High Court consists of four divisions, the trial division, the probate division, the land and titles division, and the appellate division. The justices of the court, Judiciary of American Samoa Article I and Article III tribunals#Article IV tribunals Tagupa, judicial Intervention in Matai Title Succession Disputes in American Samoa
National Park of American Samoa
The National Park of American Samoa is a National Park in the United States Territory of American Samoa, distributed across three separate islands, Ofu, and Ta‘ū. The park preserves and protects coral reefs, tropical rainforests, fruit bats, and it is popular for hiking and snorkeling. Of the parks 13,500 acres,9,000 acres is land and 4,500 acres is coral reefs, the park is the only American National Park Service system unit south of the equator. The National Park of American Samoa was established on October 31,1988 by Public Law 100-571 and this was resolved on September 9,1993, when the National Park Service entered into a 50-year lease for the park land from the Samoan village councils. In 2002, Congress approved a thirty percent expansion on Olosega, in 2009 an earthquake and tsunami produced several large waves, resulting in 34 confirmed deaths, more than a hundred injuries and the destruction of about 200 homes and businesses. The visitor center and main office were destroyed but there was one reported injury among the NPS staff.
The Tutuila unit of the park is on the end of the island near Pago Pago. It is separated by Mount Alava and the Maugaloa Ridge and includes the Amalau Valley, Craggy Point, Tafeu Cove, and it is the only part of the park accessible by car and attracts the vast majority of visitors to the area. The park lands include a trail to the top of Mount Alava and historic World War II gun emplacement sites at Breakers Point, the trail runs along the ridge in dense forest, north of which the land slopes steeply away to the ocean. Ofu island is accessible via small fisherman boats from Tau island. Ta‘ū island can be reached by a flight from Tutuila to Fiti‘uta village on Ta‘ū, a trail runs from Saua around Si’u Point to the southern coastline and stairs to the 3, 170-foot summit of Lata Mountain. Because of its location, diversity among the terrestrial species is low. Approximately 30% of the plants and one species are endemic to the archipelago. Three species of bat are the native mammals, two large fruit bats and a small insectivore, the Pacific sheath-tailed bat.
They serve an important role in pollinating the islands plants, the sheath-tailed bat was nearly eliminated by Cyclone Val in 1991. Native reptiles include the pelagic gecko, Polynesian gecko, mourning gecko, stump-toed gecko, Pacific boa, a major role for the park is to control and eradicate invasive plant and animal species such as feral pigs, which threaten the parks ecosystem. There are several species, the most predominant being the wattled honeyeater, Samoan starling. Other unusual birds include the Tahiti petrel, the spotless crake, the islands are mostly covered by tropical rainforest, including cloud forest on Tau and lowland ridge forest on Tutuila
Pago Pago is the territorial capital of American Samoa. It is on the island of American Samoa, Tutuila. The territory is served by Pago Pago International Airport at Tafuna, entertainment and tuna canning are its main industries. The area commonly referred to as Pago Pago consists of a string of villages, each with its own village council, one of the villages is itself named Pago Pago, and in 2010 had a population of 3,656. Pago Pago may refer to the village, to the bay area or to American Samoa as a whole, the constituent villages are, in order, Fagatogo, Pago Pago and Atuu. Fagatogo is the referred to as Town and was the seat of government until a new Executive Office Building was opened in Utulei. In Fagatoto is the Fono, the Police Department, the Port of Pago Pago, many shops, from 1878 to 1951, the area was the site of a coaling and repair station for the U. S. Navy, known as United States Naval Station Tutuila. In January 1942 Pago Pago Harbor was shelled by a Japanese submarine, on September 29,2009, an earthquake struck in the South Pacific, near Samoa and American Samoa, sending a tsunami into Pago Pago and surrounding areas.
The tsunami caused moderate to severe damage to villages and vehicles, the town is located between steep mountainsides and the harbor. The main downtown area is Fagatogo on the shore of Pago Pago Harbor, the location of the Fono, the port, the bus station. The banks are in Utulei and Fagotogo, as are the Sadie Thompson Inn, the tuna canneries, which provide employment for a third of the population of Tutuila, are in Atuu on the north shore of the harbor. The village of Pago Pago is at the head of the harbor. A climb to the summit of Mt. Alava in the National Park of American Samoa provides a view of the harbor. Pago Pago has a tropical rainforest climate, all official climate records for American Samoa are kept at Pago Pago. The hottest temperature recorded was 99 °F on February 22,1958. Conversely, the lowest temperature on record was 59 °F on October 10,1964, the Feleti Barstow Public Library is located in Pago Pago. In 1991, severe tropical cyclone Val hit Pago Pago, destroying the library that existed there, the current Barstow library, constructed in 1998, opened on April 17,2000.
The tramway was repaired, but closed not long after, another noted view is that from the top of the pass above Aua Village on the road to Afono
Fagatogo is a village situated on Tutuila Island, in American Samoa. It is part of the agglomeration of Pago Pago. Fagatogo is the location of the American Samoa Fono, and is listed in the Constitution of American Samoa as the official seat of government. Fagatogo contains the port of Pago Pago, the bus station and market
Rose Atoll, sometimes called Rose Island or Motu O Manu by people of the nearby Manua Islands, is an oceanic atoll within the U. S. territory of American Samoa. It is a wildlife refuge. It is the southernmost point belonging to the United States, the land area is 0.214 km2. The total area of the atoll, including lagoon and reef flat amounts to 5 km2, just west of the northernmost point is a channel into the lagoon, about 40 m wide. There are two islets on the rim of the reef, larger Rose Island in the east. The first documented sighting by a Westerner was by Louis de Freycinet in 1819 and he named it after his wife Rose. While the second woman to circumnavigate the globe, Rose de Freycinet was the first to tell her tale, in his official report Louis de Freycinet records that I named Rose Island, from the name of someone who is extremely dear to me. Soon afterwards, in 1824, it was seen by the expedition under Otto von Kotzebue, who named it Kordinkov after his First Lieutenant. The Rose Atoll Marine National Monument that lies on the two outstanding islands of the Atoll is managed cooperatively between the U. S.
Fish and Wildlife Service and the government of American Samoa. Rose Atoll contains the largest populations of giant clams, nesting seabirds, the fish population is different from the rest of the region due to a high concentration of carnivorous fish and low concentration of herbivorous fish. Almost 270 different species of fish have been recorded in the last 15 years, mahi-mahi, billfish and sharks reside outside the lagoon. In deeper waters and stalked crinoid have been spotted by scuba expeditions, sea mammals such as the endangered humpback whale and the Stenella genus of dolphin use the waters. The atoll is a nesting habitat for the threatened green turtle. The turtles migrate between American Samoa and other Pacific Island nations and their nesting season is between the months of August and February. Approximately 97% of American Samoas seabird population resides on Rose Atoll, each of the 12 bird species is federally protected. Red-footed boobies and greater and lesser frigate birds nest in the buka trees, black noddies and white terns nest in the middle and lower branches.
The root system is used by reef herons and red-tailed tropic birds, other birds can be found in the Pisonia forest, the only one left in Samoa. Rose Island Concrete Monument American Samoa, its districts and unorganized islands, United States Census Bureau A Summary of Information on Rose Atoll