Wyoming is a state in the mountain region of the western United States. The state is the 10th largest by area, the least populous, the second most sparsely populated state in the country. Wyoming is bordered on the north by Montana, on the east by South Dakota and Nebraska, on the south by Colorado, on the southwest by Utah, on the west by Idaho and Montana; the state population was estimated at 577,737 in 2018, less than 31 of the most populous U. S. cities including Denver in neighboring Colorado. Cheyenne is the state capital and the most populous city, with an estimated population of 63,624 in 2017; the western two-thirds of the state is covered by the mountain ranges and rangelands of the Rocky Mountains, while the eastern third of the state is high elevation prairie called the High Plains. Half of the land in Wyoming is owned by the U. S. government, leading Wyoming to rank sixth by area and fifth by proportion of a state's land owned by the federal government. Federal lands include two national parks—Grand Teton and Yellowstone—two national recreation areas, two national monuments, several national forests, historic sites, fish hatcheries, wildlife refuges.
Original inhabitants of the region include the Crow, Arapaho and Shoshone. Southwestern Wyoming was in the Spanish Empire and Mexican territory until it was ceded to the United States in 1848 at the end of the Mexican–American War; the region acquired the name Wyoming when a bill was introduced to the U. S. Congress in 1865 to provide a "temporary government for the territory of Wyoming"; the name was used earlier for the Wyoming Valley in Pennsylvania, is derived from the Munsee word xwé:wamənk, meaning "at the big river flat". The main drivers of Wyoming's economy are mineral extraction—mostly coal, natural gas, trona—and tourism. Agricultural commodities include livestock, sugar beets and wool; the climate is semi-arid and continental and windier than the rest of the U. S. with greater temperature extremes. Wyoming has been a politically conservative state since the 1950s, with the Republican Party candidate winning every presidential election except 1964. Wyoming's climate is semi-arid and continental, is drier and windier in comparison to most of the United States with greater temperature extremes.
Much of this is due to the topography of the state. Summers in Wyoming are warm with July high temperatures averaging between 85 and 95 °F in most of the state. With increasing elevation, this average drops with locations above 9,000 feet averaging around 70 °F. Summer nights throughout the state are characterized by a rapid cooldown with the hottest locations averaging in the 50–60 °F range at night. In most of the state, most of the precipitation tends to fall in early summer. Winters are cold, but are variable with periods of sometimes extreme cold interspersed between mild periods, with Chinook winds providing unusually warm temperatures in some locations. Wyoming is a dry state with much of the land receiving less than 10 inches of rainfall per year. Precipitation depends on elevation with lower areas in the Big Horn Basin averaging 5–8 inches; the lower areas in the North and on the eastern plains average around 10–12 inches, making the climate there semi-arid. Some mountain areas do receive a good amount of precipitation, 20 inches or more, much of it as snow, sometimes 200 inches or more annually.
The state's highest recorded temperature is 114 °F at Basin on July 12, 1900 and the lowest recorded temperature is −66 °F at Riverside on February 9, 1933. The number of thunderstorm days vary across the state with the southeastern plains of the state having the most days of thunderstorm activity. Thunderstorm activity in the state is highest during early summer; the southeastern corner of the state is the most vulnerable part of the state to tornado activity. Moving away from that point and westwards, the incidence of tornadoes drops with the west part of the state showing little vulnerability. Tornadoes, where they occur, tend to be small and brief, unlike some of those that occur farther east; as specified in the designating legislation for the Territory of Wyoming, Wyoming's borders are lines of latitude 41°N and 45°N, longitude 104°3'W and 111°3'W, making the shape of the state a latitude-longitude quadrangle. Wyoming is one of only three states to have borders along only straight latitudinal and longitudinal lines, rather than being defined by natural landmarks.
Due to surveying inaccuracies during the 19th century, Wyoming's legal border deviates from the true latitude and longitude lines by up to half of a mile in some spots in the mountainous region along the 45th parallel. Wyoming is bordered on the north by Montana, on the east by South Dakota and Nebraska, on the south by Colorado, on the southwest by Utah, on the west by Idaho, it is the tenth largest state in the United States in total area, containing 97,814 square miles and is made up of 23 counties. From the north border to the south border it is 276 miles; the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains in Wyoming. The state is a great plateau broken by many mountain ranges. Surface elevations range from the summit of Gannett Peak in the Wind River Mountain Range, at 13,804 feet, to the Belle Fourche River val
Coteau des Prairies
The Coteau des Prairies is a plateau 200 miles in length and 100 miles in width, rising from the prairie flatlands in eastern South Dakota, southwestern Minnesota, northwestern Iowa in the United States. The southeast portion of the Coteau comprises one of the distinct regions of Minnesota, known as Buffalo Ridge; the flatiron-shaped plateau was named by early French explorers from New France, coteau meaning "hill" in French. The plateau is composed of thick glacial deposits, the remnants of many repeated glaciations, reaching a composite thickness of 900 feet, they are underlain by a small ridge of resistant Cretaceous shale. During the last Ice Age, two lobes of the Laurentide glacier, the James lobe on the west and the Des Moines lobe on the east, appear to have parted around the pre-existing plateau and further deepened the lowlands flanking the plateau; the plateau has numerous small glacial lakes and is drained by the Big Sioux River in South Dakota and the Cottonwood River in Minnesota.
Pipestone deposits on the plateau have been quarried for hundreds of years by Native Americans, who use the prized, brownish-red mineral to make their sacred ceremonial pipes. The quarries are located at Pipestone National Monument in the southwest corner of Minnesota and in adjacent Minnehaha County, South Dakota. Numerous wind farms have been built on the area to take advantage of the high average wind speeds. Missouri Plateau USGS Site on the Coteau des Prairies Glacial History of Coteau des Prairies
Pierre, South Dakota
Pierre is the capital of the U. S. state of South Dakota and the seat of Hughes County. The population was 13,646 at the 2010 census, making it the second-least populous state capital in the United States, following only Montpelier and the eighth-most populous city in South Dakota. Founded in 1880 on the east bank of the Missouri River opposite Fort Pierre, Pierre has been the state capital since South Dakota gained statehood on November 2, 1889, it was challenged by Huron for the capital and won because of its location in the geographic center of the state. Fort Pierre was named after Pierre Chouteau, Jr. a major American fur trader from St. Louis, of colonial French origin. Pierre is the principal city of the Pierre Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Hughes and Stanley counties. Pierre is located at 44°22′5″N 100°20′11″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.07 square miles, of which, 13.06 square miles is land and 0.01 square miles is water.
Pierre lies on rough river bluffs above the east bank of the Missouri River, overlooking its expanse. It is a few miles away from one of the largest man-made lakes in the world. Developed for flood control and irrigation, the lake has become a popular fishing destination. Pierre has a dry, four-season, humid continental climate, with long, cold winters, hot summers, brief spring and autumnal transitions. According to weather maps and their data used as a basis, Pierre can be considered a semi-arid cold climate aided by its precipitation near the threshold that reaches northeast of the city in South Dakota; as such, it is the only capital of the Midwest's states with a non-humid climate. The monthly daily average temperature ranges from 19.9 °F in January to 75.4 °F, though the diurnal temperature variation is greater during summer than in winter. Snow falls in light amounts, with the snowiest months being February and March, while the average seasonal total is 32 inches. In addition, there are 20 nights per year with lows below 0 °F, cold conditions are intensified by the high winds of the Great Plains.
Summers see spikes in temperature, with 6.4 days of highs above 100 °F and 36−37 days with highs above 90 °F. On July 23, 1973, an F3 tornado caused 10 injuries, it was the strongest tornado recorded in Hughes County. The beginning of both May and October represent the last and first freezing nights of the cooler season. Precipitation is much lighter in the winter months than it is in late spring and summer, totals about 20 inches annually. Extremes have ranged from −35 °F on February 9, 1994 to 117 °F on July 15, 2006; as of the census of 2010, there were 13,646 people, 5,778 households, 3,463 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,044.9 inhabitants per square mile. There were 6,159 housing units at an average density of 471.6 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 85.1% White, 0.5% African American, 10.9% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.5% from other races, 2.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino people of any race were 1.9% of the population. There were 5,778 households of which 29.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.7% were married couples living together, 10.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a male householder with no wife present, 40.1% were non-families.
35.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 11% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.23 and the average family size was 2.87. The median age in the city was 39.3 years. 22.9% of residents were under the age of 18. The gender makeup of the city was 52.2 % female. As of the census of 2000, there were 13,876 people, 5,567 households, 3,574 families residing in the city; the population density was 1,065.8 people per square mile. There were 5,949 housing units at an average density of 457.0 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 88.91% White, 0.20% African American, 8.56% Native American, 0.46% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.29% from other races, 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 1.25% of the population. There were 5,567 households, out of which 32.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 9.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 35.8% were non-families.
31.5% of all households were made up of individuals, 10.7% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35, the average family size was 2.96. In the city, the population was spread out, with 27.2% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 28.6% from 25 to 44, 23.6% from 45 to 64, 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.4 males. As of 2000 the median income for a household in the city was $42,962, the median income for a family was $52,144. Males had a median income of $32,969 versus $22,865 for females; the per capita income for the city was $20,462. About 5.5% of families and 7.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.9% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65
North Dakota is a U. S. state in northern regions of the United States. It is the nineteenth largest in area, the fourth smallest by population, the fourth most sparsely populated of the 50 states. North Dakota was admitted to the Union on November 3, 1889, along with its neighboring state, South Dakota, its capital is Bismarck, its largest city is Fargo. In the 21st century, North Dakota's natural resources have played a major role in its economic performance with the oil extraction from the Bakken formation, which lies beneath the northwestern part of the state; such development has led to reduced unemployment. North Dakota contains the tallest human-made structure in the KVLY-TV mast. North Dakota is a Midwestern state of the United States, it lies at the center of the North American continent. The geographic center of North America is near the town of Rugby. Bismarck is the capital of North Dakota, Fargo is the largest city. Soil is North Dakota's most precious resource, it is the base of the state's great agricultural wealth.
But North Dakota has enormous mineral resources. These mineral resources include billions of tons of lignite coal. In addition, North Dakota has large oil reserves. Petroleum was discovered in the state in 1951 and became one of North Dakota's most valuable mineral resources. In the early 2000's, the emergence of hydraulic fracturing technologies enabled mining companies to extract huge amounts of oil from the Bakken shale rock formation in the western part of the state. North Dakota's economy is based more on farming than are the economies of most other states. Many North Dakota factories manufacture farm equipment. Many of the state’s merchants rely on agriculture. Farms and ranches cover nearly all of North Dakota, they stretch from the flat Red River Valley in the east, across rolling plains, to the rugged Badlands in the west. The chief crop, wheat, is grown in nearly every county. North Dakota flaxseed, it is the country’s top producer of barley and sunflower seeds and a leader in the production of beans, lentils, oats and sugar beets.
Few white settlers came to the North Dakota region before the 1870's because railroads had not yet entered the area. During the early 1870's, the Northern Pacific Railroad began to push across the Dakota Territory. Large-scale farming began during the 1870's. Eastern corporations and some families established huge wheat farms covering large areas of land in the Red River Valley; the farms made such enormous profits. White settlers, attracted by the success of the bonanza farms, flocked to North Dakota increasing the territory's population. In 1870, North Dakota had 2,405 people. By 1890, the population had grown to 190,983. North Dakota was named for the Sioux people; the Sioux called meaning allies or friends. One of North Dakota's nicknames is the Peace Garden State; this nickname honors the International Peace Garden, which lies on the state's border with Manitoba, Canada. North Dakota is called the Flickertail State because of the many flickertail ground squirrels that live in the central part of the state.
North Dakota is in the U. S. region known as the Great Plains. The state shares the Red River of the North with Minnesota to the east. South Dakota is to the south, Montana is to the west, the Canadian provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba are to the north. North Dakota is near the middle of North America with a stone marker in Rugby, North Dakota marking the "Geographic Center of the North American Continent". With an area of 70,762 square miles, North Dakota is the 19th largest state; the western half of the state consists of the hilly Great Plains as well as the northern part of the Badlands, which are to the west of the Missouri River. The state's high point, White Butte at 3,506 feet, Theodore Roosevelt National Park are in the Badlands; the region is abundant in fossil fuels including crude oil and lignite coal. The Missouri River forms Lake Sakakawea, the third largest artificial lake in the United States, behind the Garrison Dam; the central region of the state is divided into the Missouri Plateau.
The eastern part of the state consists of the flat Red River Valley, the bottom of glacial Lake Agassiz. Its fertile soil, drained by the meandering Red River flowing northward into Lake Winnipeg, supports a large agriculture industry. Devils Lake, the largest natural lake in the state, is found in the east. Eastern North Dakota is overall flat. Most of the state is covered in grassland. Natural trees in North Dakota are found where there is good drainage, such as the ravines and valley near the Pembina Gorge and Killdeer Mountains, the Turtle Mountains, the hills around Devil's Lake, in the dunes area of McHenry County in central North Dakota, along the Sheyenne Valley slopes and the Sheyenne delta; this diverse terrain supports nearly 2,000 species of plants. North Dakota has a continental climate with cold winters; the temperature differences are significant because of its far inland position and being in the center of the Northern Hemisphere, with equal distances to the North Pole and the Equator.
As such, summers are subtropical, but winters are cold enough to ensure plant hardiness is low. Native American peoples lived in what is now North Dakota for thousands of year
Montana is a landlocked state in the Northwestern United States. Montana has several nicknames, although none are official, including "Big Sky Country" and "The Treasure State", slogans that include "Land of the Shining Mountains" and more "The Last Best Place". Montana is the 4th largest in area, the 8th least populous, the 3rd least densely populated of the 50 U. S. states. The western half of Montana contains numerous mountain ranges. Smaller island ranges are found throughout the state. In all, 77 named; the eastern half of Montana is characterized by badlands. Montana is bordered by Idaho to the west, Wyoming to the south, North Dakota and South Dakota to the east, the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Saskatchewan to the north; the economy is based on agriculture, including ranching and cereal grain farming. Other significant economic resources include oil, coal, hard rock mining, lumber; the health care and government sectors are significant to the state's economy. The state's fastest-growing sector is tourism.
Nearly 13 million tourists annually visit Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park, the Beartooth Highway, Flathead Lake, Big Sky Resort, other attractions. The name Montana comes from the Spanish word Montaña, which in turn comes from the Latin word Montanea, meaning "mountain", or more broadly, "mountainous country". Montaña del Norte was the name given by early Spanish explorers to the entire mountainous region of the west; the name Montana was added to a bill by the United States House Committee on Territories, chaired at the time by Rep. James Ashley of Ohio, for the territory that would become Idaho Territory; the name was changed by Representatives Henry Wilson and Benjamin F. Harding, who complained Montana had "no meaning"; when Ashley presented a bill to establish a temporary government in 1864 for a new territory to be carved out of Idaho, he again chose Montana Territory. This time Rep. Samuel Cox of Ohio, objected to the name. Cox complained the name was a misnomer given most of the territory was not mountainous and that a Native American name would be more appropriate than a Spanish one.
Other names such as Shoshone were suggested, but it was decided the Committee on Territories could name it whatever they wanted, so the original name of Montana was adopted. Montana is one of the nine Mountain States, located in the north of the region known as the Western United States, it borders North South Dakota to the east. Wyoming is to the south, Idaho is to the west and southwest, three Canadian provinces, British Columbia and Saskatchewan, are to the north. With an area of 147,040 square miles, Montana is larger than Japan, it is the fourth largest state in the United States after Alaska and California. S. state. The state's topography is defined by the Continental Divide, which splits much of the state into distinct eastern and western regions. Most of Montana's 100 or more named mountain ranges are in the state's western half, most of, geologically and geographically part of the Northern Rocky Mountains; the Absaroka and Beartooth ranges in the state's south-central part are technically part of the Central Rocky Mountains.
The Rocky Mountain Front is a significant feature in the state's north-central portion, isolated island ranges that interrupt the prairie landscape common in the central and eastern parts of the state. About 60 percent of the state is part of the northern Great Plains; the Bitterroot Mountains—one of the longest continuous ranges in the Rocky Mountain chain from Alaska to Mexico—along with smaller ranges, including the Coeur d'Alene Mountains and the Cabinet Mountains, divide the state from Idaho. The southern third of the Bitterroot range blends into the Continental Divide. Other major mountain ranges west of the Divide include the Cabinet Mountains, the Anaconda Range, the Missions, the Garnet Range, Sapphire Mountains, Flint Creek Range; the Divide's northern section, where the mountains give way to prairie, is part of the Rocky Mountain Front. The front is most pronounced in the Lewis Range, located in Glacier National Park. Due to the configuration of mountain ranges in Glacier National Park, the Northern Divide crosses this region and turns east in Montana at Triple Divide Peak.
It causes the Waterton River and Saint Mary rivers to flow north into Alberta, Canada. There they join the Saskatchewan River, which empties into Hudson Bay. East of the divide, several parallel ranges cover the state's southern part, including the Gravelly Range, the Madison Range, Gallatin Range, Absaroka Mountains and the Beartooth Mountains; the Beartooth Plateau is the largest continuous land mass over 10,000 feet high in the continental United States. It contains Granite Peak, 12,799 feet high. North of these ranges are the Big Belt Mountains, Bridger Mountains, Tobacco Roots, several island ranges, including the Crazy Mountains and Little Belt Mountains. Between many mountain ranges are rich river valleys; the Big Hole Valley, Bitterroot Valley, Gallatin Valley, Flathead Valley, Paradise Valley have extensive agricultural resources and multiple opportunities for tourism and recreation. East and north of this transition zone are the expansive and sparsely populated Northern Plains, with tableland prairies, smaller island mountain ranges, badlands.
The isolated island ranges east of the Divide include the Bear Paw Mountains, Bull Mountains, Castle Mountains, Crazy Mountains, Highwood Mountains, Judi
South Dakota's at-large congressional district
South Dakota's At-Large Congressional District is the sole congressional district for the state of South Dakota. Based on area, it is the fourth largest congressional district in the nation; the district is represented by Dusty Johnson. The district was created when South Dakota achieved statehood on November 2, 1889, electing two members At-Large. Following the 1910 Census a third seat was gained, with the legislature drawing three separate districts; the third district was eliminated after the 1930 Census. Following the 1980 Census the second seat was eliminated. Since 1983, South Dakota has retained a single congressional district. Hillary Clinton of New York won the June 3, 2008 South Dakota Democratic Primary with 55.35% of the statewide/at-large congressional district vote while Barack Obama of Illinois received 44.65%. The state/at-large congressional district gave Clinton her final win during the course of the historic and drawn-out 2008 Democratic Presidential Primary season. U. S. Representative Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, who had endorsed John Edwards, decided to support Obama before her state/congressional district voted in the primary for Clinton.
John McCain of Arizona won the June 3, 2008 South Dakota GOP Primary with 70.19% of the statewide/at-large congressional district vote while libertarian-leaning Ron Paul of Texas finished in second place in the state/congressional district with 16.52%. Incumbent U. S. Representative Bill Janklow resigned the seat January 20, 2004, after he was convicted of second-degree manslaughter, triggering a special election. Democrat Stephanie Herseth was selected as the Democratic nominee for this special election and she defeated Republican Larry Diedrich with 51 percent of the vote in a close-fought election on June 1, 2004. Herseth's victory gave the state its first all-Democratic congressional delegation since 1937. In the November general election, Herseth was elected to a full term with 53.4 percent of the vote, an increase of a few percentage points compared with the closer June special elections. Herseth's vote margin in June was about 3,000 votes, but by November it had grown to over 29,000. Herseth thereby became the first woman in state history to win a full term in the U.
S. Congress. Both elections were hard-fought and close compared to many House races in the rest of the United States, the special election was watched by a national audience; the general election was viewed as one of the most competitive in the country, but was overshadowed in the state by the competitive U. S. Senate race between Democrat Tom Daschle and Republican John Thune, which Thune narrowly won. Two seats were created in 1889, they were changed into three districts in 1913. One at-large seat remained after 1983. Martis, Kenneth C.. The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company. Martis, Kenneth C.. The Historical Atlas of United States Congressional Districts. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company. Congressional Biographical Directory of the United States 1774–present 2004 campaign finance data