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
The Ohio River, which streams westward from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Cairo, Illinois, is the largest tributary, by volume, of the Mississippi River in the United States. The 981-mile river flows through or along the border of six states, through its largest tributary, the Tennessee River, the basin includes many of the states of the southeastern U. S. It is the source of drinking water for three million people and it is named in Iroquoian or Seneca, Ohi, yó, lit. Good River or Shawnee and Spelewathiipi, the river had great significance in the history of the Native Americans, as numerous civilizations formed along its valley. For thousands of years, Native Americans used the river as a major transportation, in 1669, René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle led a French expedition to the Ohio River, becoming the first Europeans to see it. After European-American settlement, the served as a border between present-day Kentucky and Indian Territories. It was a transportation route for pioneers during the westward expansion of the early U. S.
In his Notes on the State of Virginia published in 1781–82, Thomas Jefferson stated and its current gentle, waters clear, and bosom smooth and unbroken by rocks and rapids, a single instance only excepted. During the 19th century, the river was the boundary of the Northwest Territory. Where the river was narrow, it was the way to freedom for thousands of slaves escaping to the North, many helped by free blacks and whites of the Underground Railroad resistance movement. The Ohio River is a transition area, as its water runs along the periphery of the humid subtropical. It is inhabited by fauna and flora of both climates, in winter, it regularly freezes over at Pittsburgh but rarely further south toward Cincinnati and Louisville. At Paducah, Kentucky, in the south, near the Ohios confluence with the Mississippi, Paducah was founded there because it is the northernmost ice-free reach of the Ohio. The Ohio River is formed by the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers at Point State Park in Pittsburgh, from there, it flows northwest through Allegheny and Beaver counties, before making an abrupt turn to the south-southwest at the West Virginia–Ohio–Pennsylvania triple-state line.
From there, it forms the border between West Virginia and Ohio, upstream of Wheeling, West Virginia, the river follows a roughly southwest and west-northwest course until Cincinnati, before bending to a west-southwest course for most of its length. The course forms the borders of West Virginia and Kentucky. The Ohio drains parts of 15 states in four regions, northeast New York, a small area of the southern border along the headwaters of the Allegheny. Pennsylvania, a corridor from the corner to north central border
Murray State University
Murray State University is a four-year public university located in Murray, United States. In addition to the campus, Murray State operates extended campuses offering upper level and graduate courses in Paducah, Madisonville. One would be in the part of the state, which caused many cities. Wells spoke on behalf of the city of Murray to convince the Normal School Commission to choose his city, on September 2,1922, Murray was chosen as the site of the western normal school, while Morehead was chosen for the eastern normal school. On November 26,1922, John Wesley Carr was elected the first president of the Murray State Normal School by the State Board of Education, believing it had the authority to elect the president, the Normal School Commission picked Rainey Wells to be the first president. On May 15,1923, The Kentucky Court of Appeals ruled for the State Board of Education, Murray State Normal School opened on September 23,1923. Until the first building was completed, now Wrather West Kentucky Museum, all students commuted until the first dormitory, Wells Hall, was constructed in 1925.
Wilson Hall was completed under Carrs presidency, with other structures were in progress, in 1926, Rainey T. Wells, recognized as the founder of Murray State, became its second president. Wells served from 1926 to 1932, and during this time Lovett Auditorium, Carr Health Building, in 1926, the Normal School was renamed Murray State Normal School and Teachers College, and the General Assembly granted it authority to confer baccalaureate degrees. In 1928, the college was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges, in 1930, the name was changed to Murray State Teachers College and it was granted authority to offer liberal arts and preprofessional courses. The name was changed again in 1948 to Murray State College, the Shield is the official seal of the university. It is taken from the heraldic coat-of-arms of the family of William Murray, Earl of Mansfield, William Murray is an ancestor of the Murray family from whom the city and the university take their names. The shield is blue with a double gold border—its three stars represent hope and achievement, the oldest and most easily recognizable buildings on the Murray State campus are situated around a large, tree-lined area on the south side of campus.
This part of campus, known as the Quadrangle, is bounded by 16th Street to the west, 15th Street to the east, Lovett Auditorium to the north, ground was broken for Wrather Hall on October 15,1923, and it has been in use since 1924. Wrather Hall first housed administrative offices and classrooms before becoming Wrather West Kentucky Museum, the building features a large auditorium that is frequently used for lectures and meetings. Faculty Hall, Wells Hall and the Business Building line the edge of the Quadrangle. The Lowry Center, Pogue Library and the Price Doyle Fine Arts Center line the side of the Quad. The 11-story Doyle Fine Arts Center is the tallest building on campus, directly south of the Quad is Sparks Hall
Indigenous peoples of the Americas
The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the pre-Columbian peoples of the Americas and their descendants. The term Amerindian is used in Quebec, the Guianas, Indigenous peoples of the United States are commonly known as Native Americans or American Indians, and Alaska Natives. Application of the term Indian originated with Christopher Columbus, who, in his search for Asia, the Americas came to be known as the West Indies, a name still used to refer to the islands of the Caribbean Sea. This led to the blanket term Indies and Indians for the indigenous inhabitants, although some indigenous peoples of the Americas were traditionally hunter-gatherers—and many, especially in the Amazon basin, still are—many groups practiced aquaculture and agriculture. The impact of their agricultural endowment to the world is a testament to their time, although some societies depended heavily on agriculture, others practiced a mix of farming and gathering. In some regions the indigenous peoples created monumental architecture, large-scale organized cities, chiefdoms and empires.
Many parts of the Americas are still populated by peoples, some countries have sizable populations, especially Belize, Chile, Greenland, Mexico. At least a different indigenous languages are spoken in the Americas. Some, such as the Quechuan languages, Guaraní, Mayan languages, many maintain aspects of indigenous cultural practices to varying degrees, including religion, social organization, and subsistence practices. Like most cultures, over time, cultures specific to many indigenous peoples have evolved to incorporate traditional aspects, some indigenous peoples still live in relative isolation from Western culture and a few are still counted as uncontacted peoples. The specifics of Paleo-Indian migration to and throughout the Americas, including the dates and routes traveled, are the subject of ongoing research. According to archaeological and genetic evidence and South America were the last continents in the world with human habitation. During the Wisconsin glaciation, 50–17,000 years ago, falling sea levels allowed people to move across the bridge of Beringia that joined Siberia to northwest North America.
Alaska was a glacial refugium because it had low snowfall, allowing a small population to exist, the Laurentide Ice Sheet covered most of North America, blocking nomadic inhabitants and confining them to Alaska for thousands of years. Indigenous genetic studies suggest that the first inhabitants of the Americas share a single population, one that developed in isolation. The isolation of these peoples in Beringia might have lasted 10–20,000 years, around 16,500 years ago, the glaciers began melting, allowing people to move south and east into Canada and beyond. These people are believed to have followed herds of now-extinct Pleistocene megafauna along ice-free corridors that stretched between the Laurentide and Cordilleran Ice Sheets. Another route proposed involves migration - either on foot or using primitive boats - along the Pacific Northwest coast to the south, archeological evidence of the latter would have been covered by the sea level rise of more than 120 meters since the last ice age
Illinois is a state in the midwestern region of the United States, achieving statehood in 1818. It is the 6th most populous state and 25th largest state in terms of land area, the word Illinois comes from a French rendering of a native Algonquin word. For decades, OHare International Airport has been ranked as one of the worlds busiest airports, Illinois has long had a reputation as a bellwether both in social and cultural terms and politics. With the War of 1812 Illinois growth slowed as both Native Americans and Canadian forces often raided the American Frontier, mineral finds and timber stands had spurred immigration—by the 1810s, the Eastern U. S. Railroads arose and matured in the 1840s, and soon carried immigrants to new homes in Illinois, as well as being a resource to ship their commodity crops out to markets. Railroads freed most of the land of Illinois and other states from the tyranny of water transport. By 1900, the growth of jobs in the northern cities and coal mining in the central and southern areas attracted a new group of immigrants.
Illinois was an important manufacturing center during both world wars, the Great Migration from the South established a large community of African Americans in Chicago, who created the citys famous jazz and blues cultures. Three U. S. presidents have been elected while living in Illinois, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, Ronald Reagan, whose political career was based in California, was the only U. S. president born and raised in Illinois. Today, Illinois honors Lincoln with its official slogan, Land of Lincoln. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum is located in the capital of Springfield. Illinois is the spelling for the early French Catholic missionaries and explorers name for the Illinois Native Americans. American scholars previously thought the name Illinois meant man or men in the Miami-Illinois language and this etymology is not supported by the Illinois language, as the word for man is ireniwa and plural men is ireniwaki. The name Illiniwek has said to mean tribe of superior men.
The name Illinois derives from the Miami-Illinois verb irenwe·wa he speaks the regular way and this was taken into the Ojibwe language, perhaps in the Ottawa dialect, and modified into ilinwe·. The French borrowed these forms, changing the ending to spell it as -ois. The current spelling form, began to appear in the early 1670s, the Illinois name for themselves, as attested in all three of the French missionary-period dictionaries of Illinois, was Inoka, of unknown meaning and unrelated to the other terms. American Indians of successive cultures lived along the waterways of the Illinois area for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans, the Koster Site has been excavated and demonstrates 7,000 years of continuous habitation
Agriculture is the cultivation and breeding of animals and fungi for food, biofuel, medicinal plants and other products used to sustain and enhance human life. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of human civilization. The study of agriculture is known as agricultural science, the history of agriculture dates back thousands of years, and its development has been driven and defined by greatly different climates and technologies. Industrial agriculture based on large-scale monoculture farming has become the dominant agricultural methodology, genetically modified organisms are an increasing component of agriculture, although they are banned in several countries. Agricultural food production and water management are increasingly becoming global issues that are fostering debate on a number of fronts, the major agricultural products can be broadly grouped into foods, fibers and raw materials. Specific foods include cereals, fruits, meats, fibers include cotton, hemp and flax. Raw materials include lumber and bamboo, other useful materials are produced by plants, such as resins, drugs, perfumes and ornamental products such as cut flowers and nursery plants.
The word agriculture is a late Middle English adaptation of Latin agricultūra, from ager, Agriculture usually refers to human activities, although it is observed in certain species of ant and ambrosia beetle. To practice agriculture means to use resources to produce commodities which maintain life, including food, forest products, horticultural crops. This definition includes arable farming or agronomy, and horticulture, all terms for the growing of plants, even then, it is acknowledged that there is a large amount of knowledge transfer and overlap between silviculture and agriculture. In traditional farming, the two are often combined even on small landholdings, leading to the term agroforestry, Agriculture began independently in different parts of the globe, and included a diverse range of taxa. At least 11 separate regions of the Old and New World were involved as independent centers of origin, wild grains were collected and eaten from at least 105,000 years ago. Pigs were domesticated in Mesopotamia around 15,000 years ago, rice was domesticated in China between 13,500 and 8,200 years ago, followed by mung and azuki beans.
Sheep were domesticated in Mesopotamia between 13,000 and 11,000 years ago. From around 11,500 years ago, the eight Neolithic founder crops and einkorn wheat, hulled barley, lentils, bitter vetch, chick peas and flax were cultivated in the Levant. Cattle were domesticated from the aurochs in the areas of modern Turkey. In the Andes of South America, the potato was domesticated between 10,000 and 7,000 years ago, along with beans, llamas, alpacas and some root vegetables were domesticated in New Guinea around 9,000 years ago. Sorghum was domesticated in the Sahel region of Africa by 7,000 years ago, cotton was domesticated in Peru by 5,600 years ago, and was independently domesticated in Eurasia at an unknown time
A plaza /ˈplɑːzə/ is an open urban public space, such as a city square. The plaza might be enough to serve as a military parade ground. At times of crisis or fiesta, it was the space where a large crowd might gather, like the Italian piazza, the plaza remains a center of community life that is only equaled by the market-place. A plaza de toros is a bullring, in modern usage, a plaza can be any gathering place on a street or between buildings, a street intersection with a statue, etc. Todays metropolitan landscapes often incorporate the plaza as an element, or as an outcome of zoning regulations, building budgetary constraints. Sociologist William H. Plaza is a Spanish word, cognate to Italian piazza, Portuguese praça, Galician praza, Catalan plaça, Romanian piața, German Platz, the origin of all these words is, via Latin platea, from Greek πλατεῖα plateia, meaning broad. The first purpose-built shopping center in the United States, opened in Kansas City, Missouri in 1922, knowingly took the name of Country Club Plaza and adopted Spanish architectural details.
More recently plaza has been used to describe a complex, similar to a shopping mall. Examples, Pantip Plaza, Bintang Plaza, Kuching Plaza, Plaza Las Américas, Plaza de las Estrellas, Central Plaza, Schiphol Plaza, Plazas del Centro Comercial Santafé, The Plaza, and Cityplaza. Central Plaza, in Hong Kong, was for four years the tallest building in Asia, at 78 storeys,374 m
Wisconsin is a U. S. state located in the north-central United States, 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, Wisconsin is the 23rd largest state by total area and the 20th most populous. The state capital is Madison, and its largest city is Milwaukee, the state is divided into 72 counties. Wisconsin is second to Michigan in the length of its Great Lakes coastline, Wisconsin is known as Americas Dairyland because it is one of the nations leading dairy producers, particularly famous for its cheese. Manufacturing, especially paper products, information technology, and tourism are major contributors to the states economy. The word Wisconsin originates from the 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, subsequent French writers changed the spelling from Meskousing to Ouisconsin, and 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 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, but most implicate the river and the red sandstone that lines its banks, 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 variety of cultures over the past 12,000 years. The first people arrived around 10,000 BCE during the Wisconsin Glaciation and 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, agricultural societies emerged gradually over the Woodland period between 1000 BCE to 1000 CE.
Toward the end of period, Wisconsin was the heartland of the Effigy Mound culture. Later, between 1000 and 1500 CE, the Mississippian and Oneota cultures built substantial settlements including the 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, the first European to visit what became Wisconsin was probably the French explorer Jean Nicolet. He canoed west from Georgian Bay through the Great Lakes in 1634, 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
The Angel Phase describes a 300-400-year cultural manifestation of the Mississippian culture of the central portions of the United States of America, as defined in the discipline of archaeology. Angel Phase archaeological sites date from c, additional sites range from the mouth of Anderson River in Perry County, west to the mouth of the Wabash in Posey County, Indiana. One of the most extensive Mississippian artifact assemblages in its region, the count is rising yearly with continued excavation and research. Of this vast quantity, 98% are plain or decorated with relatively common designs, the common decorations such as cord marking and fabric impressing are very rare. Chipped-stone artifacts and debris are uncommon at Angel Phase mounds, consisting of less than 1% of all artifacts, ground-stone artifacts are fewer, representing about one-seventh the frequency of their chipped counterparts. Faunal remains are, however, a significant portion of the assemblage, from a regional perspective, certain patterns and comparisons can be observed between other assemblages and among time periods.
First, the simplicity or plainness of the Angel collection is similar to comparable assemblages from the Tennessee-Cumberland region and it is considered more plain than other Ohio-Mississippi confluence assemblages. Second, there is a trend toward greater plainness as time progresses, from early Angel 2 phase to late Angel 3 phase, the percentage of decorated sherds relative to all sherds declined from 3% to 0. 6%. This trend is in line with trends in Tennessee-Cumberland and Western Kentucky assemblages that deemphasized painting as a mode of decoration from prior to 1200 CE compared to afterward. The chronology of Angel pottery is based upon certain markers that occur in the assemblage, rim thickness and handle variation are markers that gradually shift in pottery styles over time. They can be associated with the early period, with the loop handle shifting toward the strap handle later. The appearance of a Ramey Incised sherd demarcates an earlier period, the context in which these artifact markers are found contributes to whether the chronology can be deemed viable and acceptable as a temporal scale.
To ensure that this is true, a series of eliminations of questionable layers is conducted to create a sample that represents undisturbed archaeological stratigraphy. Most striking are the comparisons between the Kincaid and Angel sites, which include analogous site plans, stylistic similarities in artifacts and these connections have led some experts to hypothesize that the builders and residents were of the same society. The 300-400 year span in which types of artifacts and sites are found is called the Angel Phase. It is broken up into three subphases, Jonathan Creek and Tinsley Hill, all four mound sites include painted and incised sherds that are very rare, ranging from less than one percent near Kincaid to about three or four percent of the assemblage at Wickliffe. Some common pottery styles found in these sites include, Angel Negative Painted, Kincaid Negative Painted and this pottery is shell tempered and ranges from the smoothed surface and coarser temper of Mississippi Ware to the more polished surface and finer temper of Bell Ware.
Many of the structures in the site were built in the early Angel 2 phase, according to the stratigraphy of midden deposits, this was the earliest Middle Mississippian occupation of Angel
Common Era or Current Era is a year-numbering system for the Julian and Gregorian calendars that refers to the years since the start of this era, i. e. since AD1. The preceding era is referred to as before the Common or Current Era, the Current Era notation system can be used as a secular alternative to the Dionysian era system, which distinguishes eras as AD and BC. The two notation systems are equivalent, thus 2017 CE corresponds to AD2017 and 400 BCE corresponds to 400 BC. The year-numbering system for the Gregorian calendar is the most widespread civil calendar used in the world today. For decades, it has been the standard, recognized by international institutions such as the United Nations. The expression has been traced back to Latin usage to 1615, as vulgaris aerae, the term Common Era can be found in English as early as 1708, and became more widely used in the mid-19th century by Jewish academics. He attempted to number years from a reference date, an event he referred to as the Incarnation of Jesus.
Dionysius labeled the column of the table in which he introduced the new era as Anni Domini Nostri Jesu Christi, numbering years in this manner became more widespread in Europe with its usage by Bede in England in 731. Bede introduced the practice of dating years before what he supposed was the year of birth of Jesus, in 1422, Portugal became the last Western European country to switch to the system begun by Dionysius. The first use of the Latin term vulgaris aerae discovered so far was in a 1615 book by Johannes Kepler, Kepler uses it again in a 1616 table of ephemerides, and again in 1617. A1635 English edition of that book has the title page in English – so far, a 1701 book edited by John LeClerc includes Before Christ according to the Vulgar Æra,6. A1716 book in English by Dean Humphrey Prideaux says, before the beginning of the vulgar æra, a 1796 book uses the term vulgar era of the nativity. The first so-far-discovered usage of Christian Era is as the Latin phrase aerae christianae on the page of a 1584 theology book.
In 1649, the Latin phrase æræ Christianæ appeared in the title of an English almanac, a 1652 ephemeris is the first instance so-far-found for English usage of Christian Era. The English phrase common Era appears at least as early as 1708, a 1759 history book uses common æra in a generic sense, to refer to the common era of the Jews. The first-so-far found usage of the phrase before the era is in a 1770 work that uses common era and vulgar era as synonyms. The 1797 edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica uses the terms vulgar era, the Catholic Encyclopedia in at least one article reports all three terms being commonly understood by the early 20th century. Thus, the era of the Jews, the common era of the Mahometans, common era of the world
Social stratification is a societys categorization of people into socioeconomic strata, based upon their occupation and income and social status, or derived power. As such, stratification is the social position of persons within a social group, geographic region. The upper-stratum, the middle-stratum, and the lower stratum, moreover, a social stratum can be formed upon the bases of kinship or caste, or both. Determining the structures of social stratification arises from inequalities of status among persons, generally, the greater the social complexity of a society, the more social strata exist, by way of social differentiation. Social stratification is a used in the social sciences to describe the relative social position of persons in a given social group, category. In modern Western societies, stratification is often classified into three major divisions of social class, upper class, middle class, and lower class. Each of these classes can be subdivided into smaller classes. Social strata may be delineated on the basis of kinship ties or caste relations, the concept of social stratification is often used and interpreted differently within specific theories.
So-called conflict theories, such as Marxism, point to the inaccessibility of resources, talcott Parsons, an American sociologist, asserted that stability and social order are regulated, in part, by universal values. Such values are not identical with consensus but can as well be an impetus for ardent social conflict as it has multiple times through history. Parsons never claimed that universal values, in and by themselves, the constitution of society is a much more complicated codification of emerging historical factors. Theorists such as Ralf Dahrendorf alternately note the tendency toward an enlarged middle-class in modern Western societies due to the necessity of a workforce in technological economies. Various social and political perspectives concerning globalization, such as dependency theory, four principles are posited to underlie social stratification. First, social stratification is socially defined as a property of a society rather than individuals in that society, social stratification is reproduced from generation to generation.
Third, social stratification is universal but variable, social stratification involves not just quantitative inequality but qualitative beliefs and attitudes about social status. Although stratification is not limited to complex societies, all complex societies exhibit features of stratification, the term stratification system is sometimes used to refer to the complex social relationships and social structure that generate these observed inequalities. Social mobility is the movement of individuals, social groups or categories of people between the layers or strata in a stratification system and this movement can be intragenerational or intergenerational. Such mobility is used to classify different systems of social stratification
The Mississippi River is the chief river of the largest drainage system on the North American continent. Flowing entirely in the United States, it rises in northern Minnesota, with its many tributaries, the Mississippis watershed drains all or parts of 31 U. S. states and 2 Canadian provinces between the Rocky and Appalachian Mountains. The Mississippi ranks as the fourth longest and fifteenth largest river in the world by discharge, the river either borders or passes through the states of Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana. Native Americans long lived along the Mississippi River and its tributaries, most were hunter-gatherers, but some, such as the Mound Builders, formed prolific agricultural societies. The arrival of Europeans in the 16th century changed the way of life as first explorers, settlers. The river served first as a barrier, forming borders for New Spain, New France, and the early United States, and as a vital transportation artery and communications link.
Formed from thick layers of the silt deposits, the Mississippi embayment is one of the most fertile agricultural regions of the country. In recent years, the river has shown a shift towards the Atchafalaya River channel in the Delta. The word itself comes from Messipi, the French rendering of the Anishinaabe name for the river, see below in the History section for additional information. In addition to historical traditions shown by names, there are at least two measures of a rivers identity, one being the largest branch, and the other being the longest branch. Using the largest-branch criterion, the Ohio would be the branch of the Lower Mississippi. Using the longest-branch criterion, the Middle Mississippi-Missouri-Jefferson-Beaverhead-Red Rock-Hellroaring Creek River would be the main branch and its length of at least 3,745 mi is exceeded only by the Nile, the Amazon, and perhaps the Yangtze River among the longest rivers in the world. The source of this waterway is at Browers Spring,8,800 feet above sea level in southwestern Montana and this is exemplified by the Gateway Arch in St.
Louis and the phrase Trans-Mississippi as used in the name of the Trans-Mississippi Exposition. It is common to qualify a regionally superlative landmark in relation to it, the New Madrid Seismic Zone along the river is noteworthy. These various basic geographical aspects of the river in turn underlie its human history and present uses of the waterway, the Upper Mississippi runs from its headwaters to its confluence with the Missouri River at St. Louis, Missouri. The source of the Upper Mississippi branch is traditionally accepted as Lake Itasca,1,475 feet above sea level in Itasca State Park in Clearwater County, the lake is in turn fed by a number of smaller streams. From its origin at Lake Itasca to St. Louis, fourteen of these dams are located above Minneapolis in the headwaters region and serve multiple purposes, including power generation and recreation. The remaining 29 dams, beginning in downtown Minneapolis, all locks and were constructed to improve commercial navigation of the upper river