Joseph Nicolas Nicollet known as Jean-Nicolas Nicollet, was a French geographer and mathematician known for mapping the Upper Mississippi River basin during the 1830s. Nicollet led three expeditions in the region between the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers in Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota. Before emigrating to the United States, Nicollet was a professor of mathematics at Collège Louis-le-Grand, a professor and astronomer at the Paris Observatory with Pierre-Simon Laplace. Political and academic changes in France led Nicollet to travel to the United States to do work that would bolster his reputation among academics in Europe. Nicollet's maps were among the most accurate of the time, correcting errors made by Zebulon Pike, they provided the basis for all subsequent maps of the American interior, they were among the first to depict elevation by hachuring and the only maps to use regional Native American placenames. Nicollet's Map of the Hydrographical Basin of the Upper Mississippi was published in 1843, following his death.
Nicollet Tower, located in Sisseton, South Dakota is a monument to Nicollet and his work and was constructed in 1991. Nicollet was born at Cluses in Savoy, he was bright, showing aptitude in mathematics and astronomy that earned him a scholarship to the Jesuit college in Chambéry. He began teaching mathematics at age 19. In 1817, he was appointed as a professor and astronomer at the Paris Observatory and worked with scientist and mathematician Pierre-Simon Laplace. While working at the observatory, Nicollet discovered a comet and built a reputation as an expert in astronomy and physical geography. During the 1820s, he worked as a mathematics professor at the Collège Louis-le-Grand. Nicollet encountered financial and professional difficulties resulting from political turbulence in France following the July Revolution and the rising dominance of physics as a laboratory science. Penniless, he emigrated to the United States in 1832. Nicollet hoped to boost his reputation among European academics through his work in the US.
He intended to make a "scientific tour" of the country and had a goal of using his expertise to map the Mississippi River Valley. He arrived in Washington, D. C. where he met with scientists and government officials, discussing scientific surveys of the country. He traveled to New Orleans, from where he intended to proceed to St. Louis, but due to a cholera outbreak, travel by steamboat was halted. Instead he spent the next three years traveling throughout the south between New Orleans and Baltimore. Nicollet arrived in St. Louis in 1835. Upon his arrival 1835 in St. Louis, Nicollet gained support for his plan to map the Mississippi River from the American Fur Company and the wealthy Choteau family. From St. Louis, he took a boat up the river to Minnesota. Over the next 4 years Nicollet led three expeditions exploring the Upper Mississippi in the area, now Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota; the first expedition took place in 1836–37 and was funded by American Fur and the Choteaus. Nicollet departed Fort Snelling by canoe on July 29, 1836, accompanied by Chagobay, an Ojibwe chief, his nine-year-old son, a half-French guide named Brunia.
Nicollet explored the Mississippi to its source of Lake Itasca and the nearby Mississippi tributary, the St. Croix River; the results of this expedition corrected an error in Zebulon Pike's 1805 map, which placed the mouth of the Crow Wing River too far to the west, rendering all maps of this area inaccurate. Upon his return to Washington, D. C. to report his findings, Nicollet was appointed to head the newly formed Corps of Topographical Engineers and lead a War Department-funded expedition to map the area between the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers in order to correct the western maps affected by Pike's mistake. The expedition party set out on June 1838 from Traverse des Sioux; the party was composed of John C. Frémont, appointed by the War Department to assist on the expedition in lieu of a military escort, Joseph Renville Jr. and Joseph LaFromboise, an agent for the American Fur Company, half French, half Native American. On July 4, 1838 the expedition arrived at Pipestone Quarry, where the party members carved their initials on a rock.
From there, the party proceeded along the Blue Earth Rivers toward Spirit Lake, Iowa. In his third and final expedition, guided by Louison Freniere, Nicollet retained the assistance from Frémont and was joined for part of his journey by the Jesuit Missionary Pierre-Jean De Smet. De Smet used. On this and on his second expedition, botanist Charles Geyer took extensive notes cataloging the area's native plants; this journey was government funded and took Nicollet northwest from Iowa along the Missouri River toward Fort Pierre, South Dakota. His efforts were hampered as the Steamboat Pirate carrying his supplies sank in April 1839. On July 11, 1839, the second leg of his trip set out from Fort Pierre for Devil's Lake, North Dakota. From there, Nicollet travelled back across the Coteau des Prairies to Fort Snelling. On September 11, 1839, Nicollet returned to Washington, D. C. where he worked on consolidating the information collected into the Report to the Senate. He intended to return to Minnesota to continue his work, but failing health led to his death in Washington in 1843.
He is buried at the Congressional Cemetery, his gravestone noting "He will triumph w
Zebulon Montgomery Pike was an American brigadier general and explorer for whom Pikes Peak in Colorado was renamed. As a U. S. Army officer he led two expeditions under authority of third President Thomas Jefferson through the new Louisiana Purchase territory, first in 1805-06 to reconnoiter the upper northern reaches of the Mississippi River, in 1806-07 to explore the Southwest to the fringes of the northern Spanish-colonial settlements of New Mexico and Texas. Pike's expeditions coincided with other Jeffersonian expeditions, including the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the Thomas Freeman and Peter Custis expedition up the Red River. Pike's second expedition crossed the Rocky Mountains into what is now southern Colorado, which led to his capture by the Spanish colonial authorities near Santa Fe, who sent Pike and his men to Chihuahua, for interrogation. In 1807, Pike and some of his men were escorted by the Spanish through Texas and released near American territory in Louisiana. In 1810, Pike published an account of his expeditions, a book so popular that it was translated into Dutch and German languages, for publication in Europe.
He achieved the rank of brigadier general in the American Army and served during the War of 1812, until he was killed during the Battle of York, in April 1813, outside the British colonial capital of Upper Canada. Pike was born during the Revolutionary War, on January 5, 1779, near Lamberton, now called Lamington in Bedminster, New Jersey, in Somerset County, New Jersey, he would follow in the footsteps of his father named Zebulon, who had begun his own career in the military service of the United States beginning in 1775, at the outset of the American Revolutionary War. The younger Pike grew to adulthood with his family at a series of outposts in Ohio and Illinois – the United States' northwestern frontier at the time, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant of infantry in 1799 and promoted to first lieutenant that same year. Zebulon Pike, Jr. married Clarissa Harlow Brown in 1801. They had one child who survived to adulthood, Clarissa Brown Pike, who married President William Henry Harrison's son, John Cleves Symmes Harrison.
They had four other children. Pike's military career included working on logistics and payroll at a series of frontier posts, including Fort Bellefontaine near St. Louis. General James Wilkinson, appointed Governor of the Upper Louisiana Territory and headquartered there, became his mentor. In the summer of 1805, Wilkinson ordered Pike to locate the source of the Mississippi River, explore the northern portion of the newly created Louisiana Territory, expel Canadian fur traders illegally trading in the borders of the United States. Pike left St. Louis on August 1805, proceeding upstream by pirogue, they reached the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers on September 21st, where he negotiated a treaty with the Dakota, purchasing the future site of Fort Snelling. The expedition proceeded further upriver, stopping to construct a winter camp at the mouth of the Swan River, south of present-day Little Falls, on October 16th. On December 10th, they continued upstream along the now-frozen river on foot, visiting a number of British North West Company fur posts along the way.
They reached the fur post at Leech Lake on February 1st, stayed nearly three weeks. Pike informed the traders they were within the boundaries of the United States, henceforth required to abide by its laws and regulations. Pike met with many prominent Ojibwe chiefs, prevailing on them to surrender the medals and flags given to them as tokens of allegiance by the British, offering American replacement medals, he relayed the United States' desire that the Ojibwe and Dakota cease their mutual hostility, invited the chiefs to attend a peace conference in St. Louis. On February 10th, they ceremonially shot the British red ensign from the fur company's flag pole, replacing it with an American flag. On a short side trip, Pike traveled to the North West Company fur post on Upper Red Cedar Lake, designating the lake as the ultimate source of the Mississippi, taking celestial observations to determine itslatitude. Pike and his men left Leech Lake om February 18th, carrying diplomatic tokens from the Ojibwe chiefs to present to the Dakota chiefs as a gesture of reconciliation, arriving at their winter encampment on March 5th.
They re-embarked in their pirogues for the downriver journey on April 7th, reaching St. Louis on April 20th. Pike's was the second expedition dispatched by the government into its new territory, the first to return. After Pike returned from this first expedition, General Wilkinson immediately ordered him to mount a second expedition, this time to explore and find the headwaters of the Arkansas and Red rivers. Additional objectives of this exploratory expedition into the southwestern part of the Louisiana Territory were to evaluate natural resources and establish friendly relations with Native Americans. Beginning July 15, 1806, Pike led what became known as the "Pike Expedition". General Wilkinson's son James served as one of his lieutenants, although it now seems that Wilkinson planned that the Spanish who controlled Mexico would capture him and his men. In early November 1806, Pike and his team sighted and tried to climb to the summit of the peak named after him, they made it as far as Mt. Rosa, located southeast of Pikes Peak, before giving up the ascent in waist-deep snow.
They had gone two days without food. They continued south, searching for the Red
Wisconsin is a U. S. state located in the Midwest and Great Lakes regions. It is bordered by Minnesota to the west, Iowa to the southwest, Illinois to the south, Lake Michigan to the east, Michigan to the northeast, Lake Superior to the north. Wisconsin is the 20th most populous; the state capital is Madison, its largest city is Milwaukee, located on the western shore of Lake Michigan. The state is divided into 72 counties. Wisconsin's geography is diverse, having been impacted by glaciers during the Ice Age with the exception of the Driftless Area; the Northern Highland and Western Upland along with a part of the Central Plain occupies the western part of the state, with lowlands stretching to the shore of Lake Michigan. Wisconsin is second to Michigan in the length of its Great Lakes coastline. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, a large number of European settlers entered the state, many of whom emigrated from Germany and Scandinavia. Like neighboring Minnesota, the state remains a center of German American and Scandinavian American culture.
Wisconsin is known as "America's Dairyland" because it is one of the nation's leading dairy producers famous for its cheese. Manufacturing, information technology, cranberries and tourism are major contributors to the state's economy; the word Wisconsin originates from the name given to the Wisconsin River by one of the Algonquian-speaking Native American groups living in the region at the time of European contact. French explorer Jacques Marquette was the first European to reach the Wisconsin River, arriving in 1673 and calling the river Meskousing in his journal. Subsequent French writers changed the spelling from Meskousing to Ouisconsin, over time this became the name for both the Wisconsin River and the surrounding lands. English speakers anglicized the spelling from Ouisconsin to Wisconsin when they began to arrive in large numbers during the early 19th century; the legislature of Wisconsin Territory made the current spelling official in 1845. The Algonquin word for Wisconsin and its original meaning have both grown obscure.
Interpretations vary. One leading theory holds that the name originated from the Miami word Meskonsing, meaning "it lies red", a reference to the setting of the Wisconsin River as it flows through the reddish sandstone of the Wisconsin Dells. Other theories include claims that the name originated from one of a variety of Ojibwa words meaning "red stone place", "where the waters gather", or "great rock". Wisconsin has been home to a wide variety of cultures over the past 14,000 years; the first people arrived around 10,000 BCE during the Wisconsin Glaciation. These early inhabitants, called Paleo-Indians, hunted now-extinct ice age animals such as the Boaz mastodon, a prehistoric mastodon skeleton unearthed along with spear points in southwest Wisconsin. After the ice age ended around 8000 BCE, people in the subsequent Archaic period lived by hunting and gathering food from wild plants. Agricultural societies emerged over the Woodland period between 1000 BCE to 1000 CE. Toward the end of this period, Wisconsin was the heartland of the "Effigy Mound culture", which built thousands of animal-shaped mounds across the landscape.
Between 1000 and 1500 CE, the Mississippian and Oneota cultures built substantial settlements including the fortified village at Aztalan in southeast Wisconsin. The Oneota may be the ancestors of the modern Ioway and Ho-Chunk tribes who shared the Wisconsin region with the Menominee at the time of European contact. Other Native American groups living in Wisconsin when Europeans first settled included the Ojibwa, Fox and Pottawatomie, who migrated to Wisconsin from the east between 1500 and 1700; the first European to visit what became Wisconsin was the French explorer Jean Nicolet. He canoed west from Georgian Bay through the Great Lakes in 1634, it is traditionally assumed that he came ashore near Green Bay at Red Banks. Pierre Radisson and Médard des Groseilliers visited Green Bay again in 1654–1666 and Chequamegon Bay in 1659–1660, where they traded for fur with local Native Americans. In 1673, Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet became the first to record a journey on the Fox-Wisconsin Waterway all the way to the Mississippi River near Prairie du Chien.
Frenchmen like Nicholas Perrot continued to ply the fur trade across Wisconsin through the 17th and 18th centuries, but the French made no permanent settlements in Wisconsin before Great Britain won control of the region following the French and Indian War in 1763. So, French traders continued to work in the region after the war, some, beginning with Charles de Langlade in 1764, settled in Wisconsin permanently, rather than returning to British-controlled Canada; the British took over Wisconsin during the French and Indian War, taking control of Green Bay in 1761 and gaining control of all of Wisconsin in 1763. Like the French, the British were interested in little but the fur trade. One notable event in the fur trading industry in Wisconsin occurred in 1791, when two free African Americans set up a fur trading post among the Menominee at present day Marinette; the first permanent settlers French Canadians, some Anglo-New Englanders and a few African American freedmen, arrived in Wisconsin while it was under British control.
Charles Michel de Langlade is recognized as the first settler, establishing a trading post at Green Bay in 1745, moving there permanently in 1764. Settlement began at Prairie du Chien around 1781; the French residents at the trading post in what is now Green Bay, referred to the t
Minnesota State Highway 371
This article is about the former routing of US 371 in Minnesota, now Minnesota State Highway 371. For the current US 371 in Arkansas and Louisiana, see U. S. Route 371. Minnesota State Highway 371 is a highway in north-central Minnesota; the route connects Minnesota's northern lakes region with the central part of the state. It runs south–north from U. S. Highway 10 in Little Falls to US 2 in Cass Lake. MN 371 has become a traveled arterial route, once a two-lane roadway over all of its length, but has been widened to four lanes across most of its southern half. Much of the traffic utilizing the route is Twin Cities-based traffic heading to their cabins on one of the many northern lakes. Highway 371 is 107 miles in length. MN 371 serves as a south–north route in central and north-central Minnesota between Little Falls, Brainerd, Pequot Lakes and Cass Lake. Highway 371 departs from US 10 at Little Falls heading to the north, paralleling the Mississippi River on the east side of the river. MN 371 is a freeway-standard route coming off of US 10 as it passes on the west side of the industrial sector of Little Falls.
The first interchange heading northbound is with Morrison County Road 46, the only interchange within the Little Falls area for the freeway portion. After Little Falls the route enters rural farmland, which will characterize the rest of the freeway portion of the route; the next interchange for Highway 371 is near the Fort Ripley military base where it meets MN 115 and CR 47 at a diamond interchange. MN 115 serves the military base to the west, it sat on the west side of Highway 371 before the interchange with Highway 115 was built in the early 2000s. This interchange with Highway 115 was the final piece to be completed in the Highway 371 freeway upgrade; the Highway 371 freeway ends a few miles north of Highway 115 at CR 48, but maintains a four-lane divided highway configuration. North of CR 48, Highway 371 crosses into Crow Wing County and enters the town of Fort Ripley, spending a short time passing through the center of the small town; the highway leaves Fort Ripley and continues north as the landscape becomes less farm-oriented and more forested.
After Fort Ripley the highway turns to the northeast for several miles and clips the southeast corner of Crow Wing State Park. A few more miles to the northeast, Highway 371 intersects Business Highway 371. In the year 2000, Highway 371 was moved onto the C. Elmer Anderson Memorial Highway, which bypasses Brainerd to the west, the old roadway into downtown Brainerd was redesignated Business Highway 371. Highway 371 itself turns back to the north and crosses the Mississippi River before entering Baxter, a smaller city just to the west of Brainerd. In Baxter, MN 371 intersects another major arterial route for northern Minnesota. Highway 371 heads north through the business district of Baxter enters the Gull Lake area, a popular tourist destination. Highway 371 crosses an intersection with CR 77 and CR 48. CR 77 is a three-quarter loop around Gull Lake to the west, while Highway 371 makes up the eastern quarter. Highway 371 passes north past several lakes along with many resorts, reaches the town of Nisswa at a junction with CR 77 and CR 13.
North of this intersection, Highway 371 reduces to a two-lane road, one lane in each direction, as the landscape becomes noticeably more forested. The next town on the route is Pequot Lakes, most famous for its fishing bobber water tower; the road leaves the otherwise small town. Several miles north of Pequot Lakes and after passing through the small town of Jenkins, MN 371 enters Cass County; the forested landscape subsides for a short while as Highway 371 comes to the town of Pine River, the largest town on the route between Brainerd and Walker, here Highway 371 intersects the southern terminus of MN 84. Highway 84 heads to the northeast to Chickamaw Beach and Longville while Highway 371 continues due north; the forests return as Highway 371 reaches the town of Backus, located on Pine Mountain Lake, where it meets MN 87 for a short concurrency. After Highway 87 splits off to the east just past Backus Airport, Highway 371 heads into rural forest for about 22 miles, broken only by the small town of Hackensack before reaching MN 200 just south of Walker, a regionally important city in northern Minnesota.
Highway 371 and Highway 200 begin an 8-mile concurrency at this intersection. The two pass the former Ah-gwah-ching facility, serviced by the unsigned MN 290. Highway 371 and Highway 200 concurrently reach downtown Walker, a town where travelers can find most amenities. In Walker is the eastern terminus of MN 34, which provides the main route between Walker, Park Rapids, Detroit Lakes to the west. Several miles northwest of Walker, Highway 200 splits off Highway 371, heading west towards Lake Itasca while Highway 371 stays heading north. Highway 371 will not intersect any more state highways on its mainline routing after this intersection. Meanwhile, the landscape now becomes less treelined and more hilly as the route progresses towards Cass Lake, the final city on Highway 371; the route enters Cass Lake from the south, passes through downtown and ends at U. S. Highway 2 just north of downtown. On August 7, 2006, the hi
The Territory of Minnesota was an organized incorporated territory of the United States that existed from March 3, 1849, until May 11, 1858, when the eastern portion of the territory was admitted to the Union as the State of Minnesota. The boundaries of the Minnesota Territory, as carved out of Iowa Territory, included the current Minnesota region and most of what became Dakota Territory east of the Missouri River. Minnesota Territory included portions of Wisconsin Territory that did not become part of Wisconsin, located between the Mississippi River and Wisconsin, including the Arrowhead Region. At the time of its formation, the territory contained three cities: St. Paul, St. Anthony, Stillwater; the major territorial institutions were divided among the three: St. Paul was made the capital. Charles K. Smith, 1849–1851 Alexander Wilkin, 1851–1853 Joseph Rosser, 1853–1857 Charles L. Chase, 1857–1858 Lorenzo A. Babcock, 1849–1853 Lafayette Emmett, 1853–1858 Henry Hastings Sibley, 31st Congress, 32nd Congress, 1849–1853 Henry Mower Rice, 33rd Congress, 34th Congress, 1853–1857 William W. Kingsbury, 35th Congress, 1857–1858 John Catlin Historic regions of the United States History of Minnesota Interior Plains Territorial era of Minnesota Territorial evolution of the United States Territory of France that encompassed land that would become part of the Territory of Minnesota: Louisiane, 1682–1764 and 1803 Territory of Spain that would be returned to France: Luisiana, 1764–1803 Territory of the United Kingdom that encompassed land that would become part of the Territory of Minnesota: Rupert's Land, 1670–1870 U.
S. territories that encompassed land that would become part of the Territory of Minnesota: Territory Northwest of the River Ohio, 1787–1803 Territory of Indiana, 1800–1816 Louisiana Purchase, 1803–1804 District of Louisiana, 1804–1805 Territory of Louisiana, 1805–1812 Territory of Illinois, 1809–1818 Territory of Missouri, 1812–1821 Territory of Michigan, 1805–1837 Territory of Wisconsin, 1836–1848 U. S. territories that encompassed land, part of the Territory of Minnesota: Territory of Dakota, 1861–1889 U. S. states that encompass land, once part of the Territory of Minnesota: State of Minnesota, 1858 State of North Dakota, 1889 State of South Dakota, 1889 Media related to Minnesota Territory at Wikimedia Commons Minnesota historic documents Debates and proceedings of the Constitutional convention for the territory of Minnesota, to form a state constitution preparatory to its admission into the Union as a state
A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, Romania and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, in Jamaica. In most of the United States, counties are the political subdivisions of a state; the city, town, or populated place that houses county government is known as the seat of its respective county. The county legislature, county courthouse, sheriff's department headquarters, hall of records and correctional facility are located in the county seat though some functions may be located or conducted in other parts of the county if it is geographically large. A county seat is but not always, an incorporated municipality; the exceptions include the county seats of counties that have no incorporated municipalities within their borders, such as Arlington County, Virginia. Ellicott City, the county seat of Howard County, is the largest unincorporated county seat in the United States, followed by Towson, the county seat of Baltimore County, Maryland.
Some county seats may not be incorporated in their own right, but are located within incorporated municipalities. For example, Cape May Court House, New Jersey, though unincorporated, is a section of Middle Township, an incorporated municipality. In some of the colonial states, county seats include or included "Court House" as part of their name. In the Canadian provinces of Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, the term "shire town" is used in place of county seat. County seats in Taiwan are the administrative centers of the counties. There are 13 county seats in Taiwan, which are in the forms of county-administered city, urban township or rural township. Most counties have only one county seat. However, some counties in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont have two or more county seats located on opposite sides of the county. An example is Harrison County, which lists both Biloxi and Gulfport as county seats; the practice of multiple county seat towns dates from the days.
There have been few efforts to eliminate the two-seat arrangement, since a county seat is a source of pride for the towns involved. There are 36 counties with multiple county seats in 11 states: Coffee County, Alabama St. Clair County, Alabama Arkansas County, Arkansas Carroll County, Arkansas Clay County, Arkansas Craighead County, Arkansas Franklin County, Arkansas Logan County, Arkansas Mississippi County, Arkansas Prairie County, Arkansas Sebastian County, Arkansas Yell County, Arkansas Columbia County, Georgia Lee County, Iowa Campbell County, Kentucky Kenton County, Kentucky Essex County, Massachusetts Middlesex County, Massachusetts Plymouth County, Massachusetts Bolivar County, Mississippi Carroll County, Mississippi Chickasaw County, Mississippi Harrison County, Mississippi Hinds County, Mississippi Jasper County, Mississippi Jones County, Mississippi Panola County, Mississippi Tallahatchie County, Mississippi Yalobusha County, Mississippi Jackson County, Missouri Hillsborough County, New Hampshire Seneca County, New York Bennington County, Vermont In New England, the town, not the county, is the primary division of local government.
Counties in this region have served as dividing lines for the states' judicial systems. Connecticut and Rhode Island have no county level of thus no county seats. In Vermont and Maine the county seats are designated shire towns. County government consists only of a Superior Court and Sheriff, both located in the respective shire town. Bennington County has two shire towns. In Massachusetts, most government functions which would otherwise be performed by county governments in other states are performed by town or city governments; as such, Massachusetts has dissolved many of its county governments, the state government now operates the registries of deeds and sheriff's offices in those counties. In Virginia, a county seat may be an independent city surrounded by, but not part of, the county of which it is the administrative center. Two counties in South Dakota have their county seat and government services centered in a neighboring county, their county-level services are provided by Fall River Tripp County, respectively.
In Louisiana, divided into parishes rather than counties, county seats are referred to as parish seats. Alaska is divided into boroughs rather than counties; the Unorganized Borough, which covers 49 % of Alaska's area, has equivalent. The state with the most counties is Texas, with 254, the state with the fewest counties is Delaware, with 3. County seat war Administrative center County town, administrative centres in Ireland and the UK Chef-lieu, administrative centres in Algeria, Luxembourg, France and Tunisia Municipality, equivalent to county in many c
Time in the United States
Time in the United States, by law, is divided into nine standard time zones covering the states and its possessions, with most of the United States observing daylight saving time for the spring and fall months. The time zone boundaries and DST observance are regulated by the Department of Transportation. Official and precise timekeeping services are provided by two federal agencies: the National Institute of Standards and Technology; the clocks run by these services are kept synchronized with each other as well as with those of other international timekeeping organizations. It is the combination of the time zone and daylight saving rules, along with the timekeeping services, which determines the legal civil time for any U. S. location at any moment. Before the adoption of four standard time zones for the continental United States, many towns and cities set their clocks to noon when the sun passed their local meridian, pre-corrected for the equation of time on the date of observation, to form local mean solar time.
Noon occurred at different times but time differences between distant locations were noticeable prior to the 19th century because of long travel times and the lack of long-distance instant communications prior to the development of the telegraph. The use of local solar time became awkward as railways and telecommunications improved. American railroads maintained many different time zones during the late 1800s; each train station set its own clock making it difficult to coordinate train schedules and confusing passengers. Time calculation became a serious problem for people traveling by train, according to the Library of Congress; every city in the United States used a different time standard so there were more than 300 local sun times to choose from. Time zones were therefore a compromise, relaxing the complex geographic dependence while still allowing local time to be approximate with mean solar time. Railroad managers tried to address the problem by establishing 100 railroad time zones, but this was only a partial solution to the problem.
Weather service chief Cleveland Abbe had needed to introduce four standard time zones for his weather stations, an idea which he offered to the railroads. Operators of the new railroad lines needed a new time plan that would offer a uniform train schedule for departures and arrivals. Four standard time zones for the continental United States were introduced at noon on November 18, 1883, when the telegraph lines transmitted time signals to all major cities. In October 1884, the International Meridian Conference at Washington DC adopted a proposal which stated that the prime meridian for longitude and timekeeping should be one that passes through the centre of the transit instrument at the Greenwich Observatory in the United Kingdom; the conference therefore established the Greenwich Meridian as the prime meridian and Greenwich Mean Time as the world's time standard. The US time-zone system grew from this, in which all zones referred back to GMT on the prime meridian. In 1960, the International Radio Consultative Committee formalized the concept of Coordinated Universal Time, which became the new international civil time standard.
UTC is, within about 1 second, mean solar time at 0°. UTC does not observe daylight saving time. For most purposes, UTC is considered interchangeable with GMT, but GMT is no longer defined by the scientific community. UTC is one of several related successors to GMT. Standard time zones in the United States are defined at the federal level by law 15 USC §260; the federal law establishes the transition dates and times at which daylight saving time occurs, if observed. It is the authority of the Secretary of Transportation, in coordination with the states, to determine which regions will observe which of the standard time zones and if they will observe daylight saving time; as of August 9, 2007, the standard time zones are defined in terms of hourly offsets from UTC. Prior to this they were based upon the mean solar time at several meridians 15° apart west of Greenwich. Only the full-time zone names listed below are official. View the standard time zone boundaries here; the United States uses nine standard time zones.
As defined by US law they are: From east to west, the four time zones of the contiguous United States are: Eastern Time Zone, which comprises the states on the Atlantic coast and the eastern two thirds of the Ohio Valley. Central Time Zone, which comprises the Gulf Coast, Mississippi Valley, most of the Great Plains. Mountain Time Zone, which comprises the states and portions of states that include the Rocky Mountains and the western quarter of the Great Plains. Pacific Time Zone, which comprises the states on the Pacific coast, plus Nevada and the Idaho panhandle. Alaska Time Zone, which comprises most of the state of Alaska. Hawaii-Aleutian Time Zone, which includes Hawaii and most of the length of the Aleutian Islands chain. Samoa Time Zone, which comprises American Samoa. Chamorro Time Zone, which comprises Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. Atlantic Time Zone, which comprises Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands; some United States Minor Outlying Islands are outside the time zones defined by 15 U.
S. C. § exist in waters defined by Nautical time. In practice, military crews may