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List of states and territories of the United States

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A map of the United States showing its 50 states and District of Columbia

The United States of America is a federal republic[1] consisting of 50 states, a federal district (Washington, D.C., the capital city of the United States), five major territories, and various minor islands.[2][3] The 48 contiguous states and Washington, D.C., are in central North America between Canada and Mexico; the two other states, Alaska and Hawaii, are in the northwestern part of North America and an archipelago in the mid-Pacific, respectively, while the territories are scattered throughout the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

States are the primary subdivisions of the United States, and possess a number of powers and rights under the United States Constitution, such as regulating intrastate commerce, running elections, creating local governments, and ratifying constitutional amendments. Each state has its own constitution, grounded in republican principles, and government, consisting of three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial.[4] All states and their residents are represented in the federal Congress, a bicameral legislature consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. Each state is represented by two Senators, while Representatives are distributed among the states in proportion to the most recent constitutionally mandated decennial census.[5] Additionally, each state is entitled to select a number of electors to vote in the Electoral College, the body that elects the President of the United States, equal to the total of Representatives and Senators in Congress from that state.[6] Article IV, Section 3, Clause 1 of the Constitution grants to Congress the authority to admit new states into the Union. Since the establishment of the United States in 1776, the number of states has expanded from the original 13 to the current total of 50, and each new state is admitted on an equal footing with the existing states.[7]

As provided by Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, Congress exercises "exclusive jurisdiction" over the federal district, which is not part of any state. Prior to passage of the 1973 District of Columbia Home Rule Act, which devolved certain Congressional powers to an elected mayor and council, the district did not have an elected local government. Even so, Congress retains the right to review and overturn laws created by the council and intervene in local affairs.[8] As it is not a state, the district does not have representation in the Senate. However, since 1971, its residents have been represented in the House of Representatives by a non-voting delegate.[9] Additionally, since 1961, following ratification of the 23rd Amendment, the district has been entitled to select three electors to vote in the Electoral College.

In addition to the 50 states and federal district, the United States has sovereignty over 14 territories. Five of them (American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) have a permanent, nonmilitary population, while nine of them do not. With the exception of Navassa Island, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, which are located in the Caribbean, all territories are located in the Pacific Ocean. One territory, Palmyra Atoll, is considered to be incorporated, meaning the full body of the Constitution has been applied to it; the other territories are unincorporated, meaning the Constitution does not fully apply to them. Ten territories (the Minor Outlying Islands and American Samoa) are considered to be unorganized, meaning they have not had an Organic Act enacted by Congress; the four other territories are organized, meaning they have had an Organic Act that has been enacted by Congress. The five inhabited territories each have limited autonomy and a non-voting delegate in Congress, in addition to having territorial legislatures and governors, but residents cannot vote in federal elections.

California is the most populous state, with 38,332,521 residents (2013 estimate); Wyoming is the least populous, with an estimated 582,658 residents. The District of Columbia, with an estimated 646,449 residents as of 2012, has a higher population than the two least populous states (Wyoming and Vermont). The largest state by area is Alaska, encompassing 665,384 square miles (1,723,340 km2), while the smallest is Rhode Island, encompassing 1,545 square miles (4,000 km2). The first state to ratify the current Constitution was Delaware, which it did on December 7, 1787, while the newest state is Hawaii, which was admitted to the Union on August 21, 1959. The largest territory in terms of both population and size is Puerto Rico, with 3,725,789 residents as of the 2010 Census and a total area of 5,325 square miles (13,790 km2).

States

The table below lists the 50 states, with their current capital, largest city,[A] the date they ratified the U.S. Constitution or were admitted to the Union, population and area data, and number of representative(s) in the U.S. House of Representatives.[B]

States of the United States of America
Name &
postal abbreviation[12]
Cities Established[C] Population
[D][14]
Total area[15] Land area[15] Water area[15] Number
of Reps.
Capital Largest[16] mi2 km2 mi2 km2 mi2 km2
 Alabama AL Montgomery Birmingham Dec 14, 1819 4,874,747 52,420 135,767 50,645 131,171 1,775 4,597 7
 Alaska AK Juneau Anchorage Jan 3, 1959 739,795 665,384 1,723,337 570,641 1,477,953 94,743 245,384 1
 Arizona AZ Phoenix Feb 14, 1912 7,016,270 113,990 295,234 113,594 294,207 396 1,026 9
 Arkansas AR Little Rock Jun 15, 1836 3,004,279 53,179 137,732 52,035 134,771 1,143 2,961 4
 California CA Sacramento Los Angeles Sep 9, 1850 39,536,653 163,695 423,967 155,779 403,466 7,916 20,501 53
 Colorado CO Denver Aug 1, 1876 5,607,154 104,094 269,601 103,642 268,431 452 1,170 7
 Connecticut CT Hartford Bridgeport Jan 9, 1788 3,588,184 5,543 14,357 4,842 12,542 701 1,816 5
 Delaware DE Dover Wilmington Dec 7, 1787 961,939 2,489 6,446 1,949 5,047 540 1,399 1
 Florida FL Tallahassee Jacksonville Mar 3, 1845 20,984,400 65,758 170,312 53,625 138,887 12,133 31,424 27
 Georgia GA Atlanta Jan 2, 1788 10,429,379 59,425 153,910 57,513 148,959 1,912 4,951 14
 Hawaii HI Honolulu Aug 21, 1959 1,427,538 10,932 28,313 6,423 16,635 4,509 11,678 2
 Idaho ID Boise Jul 3, 1890 1,716,943 83,569 216,443 82,643 214,045 926 2,398 2
 Illinois IL Springfield Chicago Dec 3, 1818 12,802,023 57,914 149,995 55,519 143,793 2,395 6,202 18
 Indiana IN Indianapolis Dec 11, 1816 6,666,818 36,420 94,326 35,826 92,789 593 1,537 9
 Iowa IA Des Moines Dec 28, 1846 3,145,711 56,273 145,746 55,857 144,669 416 1,077 4
 Kansas KS Topeka Wichita Jan 29, 1861 2,913,123 82,278 213,100 81,759 211,754 520 1,346 4
 Kentucky[E] KY Frankfort Louisville Jun 1, 1792 4,454,189 40,408 104,656 39,486 102,269 921 2,387 6
 Louisiana LA Baton Rouge New Orleans Apr 30, 1812 4,684,333 52,378 135,659 43,204 111,898 9,174 23,761 6
 Maine ME Augusta Portland Mar 15, 1820 1,335,907 35,380 91,633 30,843 79,883 4,537 11,750 2
 Maryland MD Annapolis Baltimore Apr 28, 1788 6,052,177 12,406 32,131 9,707 25,142 2,699 6,990 8
 Massachusetts[E] MA Boston Feb 6, 1788 6,859,819 10,554 27,336 7,800 20,202 2,754 7,134 9
 Michigan MI Lansing Detroit Jan 26, 1837 9,962,311 96,714 250,487 56,539 146,435 40,175 104,052 14
 Minnesota MN St. Paul Minneapolis May 11, 1858 5,576,606 86,936 225,163 79,627 206,232 7,309 18,930 8
 Mississippi MS Jackson Dec 10, 1817 2,984,100 48,432 125,438 46,923 121,531 1,508 3,907 4
 Missouri MO Jefferson City Kansas City Aug 10, 1821 6,113,532 69,707 180,540 68,742 178,040 965 2,501 8
 Montana MT Helena Billings Nov 8, 1889 1,050,493 147,040 380,831 145,546 376,962 1,494 3,869 1
 Nebraska NE Lincoln Omaha Mar 1, 1867 1,920,076 77,348 200,330 76,824 198,974 524 1,356 3
 Nevada NV Carson City Las Vegas Oct 31, 1864 2,998,039 110,572 286,380 109,781 284,332 791 2,048 4
 New Hampshire NH Concord Manchester Jun 21, 1788 1,342,795 9,349 24,214 8,953 23,187 397 1,027 2
 New Jersey NJ Trenton Newark Dec 18, 1787 9,005,644 8,723 22,591 7,354 19,047 1,368 3,544 12
 New Mexico NM Santa Fe Albuquerque Jan 6, 1912 2,088,070 121,590 314,917 121,298 314,161 292 757 3
 New York NY Albany New York City Jul 26, 1788 19,849,399 54,555 141,297 47,126 122,057 7,429 19,240 27
 North Carolina NC Raleigh Charlotte Nov 21, 1789 10,273,419 53,819 139,391 48,618 125,920 5,201 13,471 13
  North Dakota ND Bismarck Fargo Nov 2, 1889 755,393 70,698 183,108 69,001 178,711 1,698 4,397 1
 Ohio OH Columbus Mar 1, 1803 11,658,609 44,826 116,098 40,861 105,829 3,965 10,269 16
 Oklahoma OK Oklahoma City Nov 16, 1907 3,930,864 69,899 181,037 68,595 177,660 1,304 3,377 5
 Oregon OR Salem Portland Feb 14, 1859 4,142,776 98,379 254,799 95,988 248,608 2,391 6,191 5
 Pennsylvania[E] PA Harrisburg Philadelphia Dec 12, 1787 12,805,537 46,054 119,280 44,743 115,883 1,312 3,397 18
 Rhode Island[F] RI Providence May 29, 1790 1,059,639 1,545 4,001 1,034 2,678 511 1,324 2
 South Carolina SC Columbia Charleston May 23, 1788 5,024,369 32,020 82,933 30,061 77,857 1,960 5,076 7
 South Dakota SD Pierre Sioux Falls Nov 2, 1889 869,666 77,116 199,729 75,811 196,350 1,305 3,379 1
 Tennessee TN Nashville Jun 1, 1796 6,715,984 42,144 109,153 41,235 106,798 909 2,355 9
 Texas TX Austin Houston Dec 29, 1845 28,304,596 268,596 695,662 261,232 676,587 7,365 19,075 36
 Utah UT Salt Lake City Jan 4, 1896 3,101,833 84,897 219,882 82,170 212,818 2,727 7,064 4
 Vermont VT Montpelier Burlington Mar 4, 1791 623,657 9,616 24,906 9,217 23,871 400 1,035 1
 Virginia[E] VA Richmond Virginia Beach Jun 25, 1788 8,470,020 42,775 110,787 39,490 102,279 3,285 8,508 11
 Washington WA Olympia Seattle Nov 11, 1889 7,405,743 71,298 184,661 66,456 172,119 4,842 12,542 10
 West Virginia WV Charleston Jun 20, 1863 1,815,857 24,230 62,756 24,038 62,259 192 497 3
 Wisconsin WI Madison Milwaukee May 29, 1848 5,795,483 65,496 169,635 54,158 140,268 11,339 29,367 8
 Wyoming WY Cheyenne Jul 10, 1890 579,315 97,813 253,335 97,093 251,470 720 1,864 1

Federal district

Federal district of the United States
Name &
postal abbreviation[12]
Established Population
[G][14]
Total area[15] Land area[15] Water area[15] Number
of Reps.
mi2 km2 mi2 km2 mi2 km2
 District of Columbia DC Jul 16, 1790[17] 693,972 68 176 61 158 7 18 1[H]

Territories

A map showing the location of each territory controlled by the United States. The United States is marked in blue, inhabited territories are marked in green, and uninhabited territories are marked in orange.

Inhabited territories

Inhabited territories of the United States
Name &
postal abbreviation[12]
Capital Acquired
[19]
Territorial status[20] Population
[I]
Total area[15] Land area[15] Water area[15] Number
of Reps.
mi2 km2 mi2 km2 mi2 km2
 American Samoa AS Pago Pago[21] 1900 Unincorporated, unorganized[J] 57,400[22] 581 1,505 76 198 505 1,307 1[H]
 Guam GU Hagåtña[23] 1899 Unincorporated, organized 161,700[24] 571 1,478 210 543 361 935 1[H]
 Northern Mariana Islands MP Saipan[25] 1986 Unincorporated, organized[K] 52,300[24] 1,976 5,117 182 472 1,793 4,644 1[H]
 Puerto Rico PR San Juan[26] 1899 Unincorporated, organized[K] 3,337,177[14] 5,325 13,791 3,424 8,868 1,901 4,924 1[L]
 U.S. Virgin Islands VI Charlotte Amalie[27] 1917 Unincorporated, organized 103,700[28] 733 1,898 134 348 599 1,550 1[H]

Uninhabited territories

Territories of the United States with no indigenous population
Name Acquired
[19]
Territorial status[20] Land Area[M]
mi2 km2
Baker Island[29] 1856 Unincorporated; unorganized 0.9 2.2
Howland Island[29] 1858 Unincorporated, unorganized 0.6 1.6
Jarvis Island[30] 1856 Unincorporated, unorganized 2.2 5.7
Johnston Atoll[31] 1859 Unincorporated, unorganized 1 2.6
Kingman Reef[32] 1860 Unincorporated, unorganized 0.005 0.01
Midway Atoll[N][34] 1867 Unincorporated, unorganized 3 7.8
Navassa Island[35] 1858[O] Unincorporated, unorganized 3 7.8
Palmyra Atoll[P][37] 1898 Incorporated, unorganized 1.5 3.9
Wake Island[Q][38] 1899[R] Unincorporated, unorganized 2.5 6.5

Disputed territories

Territories (uninhabited) claimed but not administered by the United States
Name Acquired
[19]
Territorial status[40] Area Administered by[40] Also claimed by[40]
mi2 km2
Bajo Nuevo Bank (Petrel Island)[19] 1869 Unincorporated, unorganized
(disputed sovereignty)
56 145[S][41]  Colombia  Jamaica
 Nicaragua
Serranilla Bank[19] 1880 Unincorporated, unorganized
(disputed sovereignty)
463 1,200[T][42]  Colombia  Honduras
 Nicaragua

See also

Notes

  1. ^ The largest city is the city in a state with the largest population in the city proper (as opposed to metropolitan area).
  2. ^ Each state is entitled to at least one representative. Current federal law sets the number of voting members of the House of Representatives at 435, which are apportioned among states every ten years according to their relative population.[10] Each state is also entitled to two senators.[11]
  3. ^ The original 13 states became sovereign in July 1776 upon agreeing to the United States Declaration of Independence, and each joined the first Union of states between 1777 and 1781, upon ratifying the Articles of Confederation.[13] These states are presented in the order in which each ratified the 1787 Constitution, thus joining the present federal Union of states. Subsequent states are listed in the order of their admission to the Union, and the date given is the official establishment date set by Act of Congress. For further details, see List of U.S. states by date of admission to the Union
  4. ^ 2017 estimate
  5. ^ a b c d Uses the term "commonwealth" rather than "state" in its full official name.
  6. ^ Officially the "State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations".
  7. ^ 2017 estimate
  8. ^ a b c d e Represented by a non-voting delegate in the House of Representatives.[18]
  9. ^ 2015 population estimate for: American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and Virgin Islands; 2017 population estimate for Puerto Rico.
  10. ^ Although not organized through a federal organic act or other explicit Congressional directive on governance, the people of American Samoa adopted a constitution in 1967, and then in 1977, elected territorial officials for the first time.[22]
  11. ^ a b Organized as a commonwealth.
  12. ^ Represented by a non-voting resident commissioner in the House of Representatives.[18]
  13. ^ Excluding lagoon
  14. ^ Although there are no indigenous inhabitants, around 40 United States Fish and Wildlife Service staff and service contractors live on the island at any given time.[33]
  15. ^ U.S. sovereignty is disputed by Haiti.[36]
  16. ^ Although there are no indigenous inhabitants, between four and 20 Nature Conservancy, employees, United States Fish and Wildlife Service staff, and researchers live on the island at any given time.[33]
  17. ^ Although there are no indigenous inhabitants, as of 2009, around 150 U.S. 150 U.S. military personnel and civilian contractors were living on the island, staffing the Wake Island Airfield and communications facilities.[38]
  18. ^ U.S. sovereignty is disputed by the Republic of Marshall Islands.[39]
  19. ^ This is the approximate figure for the land area of the bank, and does not include the surrounding territorial waters.
  20. ^ This figure includes the total land area of the Serranilla Bank and the water area of its lagoon, but not the surrounding territorial waters.

References

  1. ^ Onuf, Peter S. (1983). The Origins of the Federal Republic: Jurisdictional Controversies in the United States, 1775–1787. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 978-0-8122-1167-2. (Subscription required (help)).
  2. ^ "Common Core Document of the United States of America: Submitted With the Fourth Periodic Report of the United States of America to the United Nations Committee on Human Rights concerning the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights". U.S. Department of State, via The Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs.
  3. ^ "U.S. Insular Areas: application of the U.S. Constitution" (PDF). Government Accountability Office. November 1997.
  4. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions About the Minnesota Legislature". Minnesota State Legislature.
  5. ^ Burnett, Kristin D. "Congressional Apportionment (2010 Census Briefs C2010BR-08)" (PDF). U.S. Department of Commerce, Economics and Statistics Administration. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-11-19.
  6. ^ Elhauge, Einer R. "Essays on Article II: Presidential Electors". The Heritage Foundation.
  7. ^ "Doctrine of the Equality of States". Justia Law. Retrieved June 16, 2017.
  8. ^ "DC Home Rule". Council of the District of Columbia. Archived from the original on November 17, 2011.
  9. ^ Tarr, David R.; Benenson, Bob, eds. (2012). Elections A to Z (4th ed.). Sage Publications. p. 165. ISBN 9780872897694.
  10. ^ "The Permanent Apportionment Act of 1929: June 11, 1929". Washington, D.C.: Office of the Historian, United States House of Representatives. Retrieved February 28, 2018.
  11. ^ "The Senate and the United States Constitution". www.senate.gov. Washington, D.C.: Secretary of the Senate. Retrieved February 28, 2018.
  12. ^ a b c "Appendix B: Two–Letter State and possession Abbreviations". Postal Addressing Standards. Washington, D.C.: United States Postal Service. May 2015. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  13. ^ Jensen, Merrill (1959). The Articles of Confederation: An Interpretation of the Social-Constitutional History of the American Revolution, 1774–1781. University of Wisconsin Press. pp. xi, 184. ISBN 978-0-299-00204-6.
  14. ^ a b c "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division. December 2017. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i "State Area Measurements and Internal Point Coordinates". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved March 3, 2018. ... provides land, water and total area measurements for the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Island Areas. The area measurements were derived from the Census Bureau's Master Address File/Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing (MAF/TIGER®) database. The land and water areas, ... reflect base feature updates made in the MAF/TIGER® database through August, 2010.
  16. ^ "State and Local Government Finances and Employment" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. 2012. p. 284. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 17, 2011. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
  17. ^ "The History of Washington, DC". Destination DC. 2016-03-15. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  18. ^ a b "Directory of Representatives". Washington, D.C.: U.S. House of Representatives. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  19. ^ a b c d e "Acquisition Process of Insular Areas". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on April 14, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  20. ^ a b "Definitions of Insular Area Political Organizations". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior. 2015-06-12. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
  21. ^ "American Samoa". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  22. ^ a b "Islands We Serve: American Samoa". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior. 2015-06-11. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
  23. ^ "Guam". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  24. ^ a b "Islands We Serve: Guam". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior. 2015-06-11. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
  25. ^ "Northern Mariana Islands". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  26. ^ "Puerto Rico". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  27. ^ "Virgin Islands". The World Factbook. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  28. ^ "Islands We Serve: Virgin Islands". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior. 2015-06-11. Retrieved March 1, 2018.
  29. ^ a b "Baker Island". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  30. ^ "Jarvis Island". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on February 7, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  31. ^ "Johnston Island". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on March 14, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  32. ^ "Kingman Reef National Wildlife Refuge". United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  33. ^ a b "United States Pacific Islands Wildlife Refuges". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved October 10, 2014.
  34. ^ "Midway Atoll". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  35. ^ "Navassa Island". Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior. 2015-06-12. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  36. ^ Colon, Yves (September 25, 1998). "U.S., Haiti Squabble Over Control of Tiny Island". Miami Herald. Webster University.
  37. ^ "Palmyra Atoll". Office of Insular Affairs. Archived from the original on January 11, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  38. ^ a b "Wake Island". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved October 10, 2014.
  39. ^ Earnshaw, Karen (December 17, 2016). "Enen Kio (a.k.a. Wake Island): Island of the kio flower". Marshall Islands Guide. Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
  40. ^ a b c Lewis, Martin W. (March 21, 2011). "When Is an Island Not An Island? Caribbean Maritime Disputes". GeoCurrents. Retrieved June 16, 2017.
  41. ^ "US Minor Outlying Islands - Bajo Nuevo Bank". Geocaching. June 6, 2017.
  42. ^ "Cayo Serranilla" (in Spanish). Eco Fiwi. Retrieved June 16, 2017.

External links