In These United States: Part 1 – Alabama to Georgia

The United States is a large country with a lot of interesting places, cultures, and people to see. Yet, what many outside the country forget that it’s a union of states each with its own history and characteristics. I mean we Americans don’t even talk or look the same way. Heck, we can’t all agree how to pronounce the word “aunt” correctly (my take: the “u” is silent.) Still, in this five part series, I’ll go over what each state has to offer, who inhabited the place before Europeans arrived, their resident sports teams, their best known moments in history, and people from there who became famous. However, here are a few pointers:

State sports teams usually consist of best known in the state everyone knows about whether they be college or professional.

Just because a celebrity is listed as being from that particular state doesn’t mean he or she was necessarily born or died there. It just means that he or she is associated with that state a lot whether they were born, died, grew up there, live there, or have a house there. Also, to be a celebrity listed one needs to achieve some sort of lasting fame or the fact everyone knows or should know about them.

Celebrities can consist of any famous person, not just the people known as “celebrities.”
State Indian Tribes usually consist of the Indian groups that inhabited the state before Europeans came along.

Best known moments include stuff that most people would know from American history from either their textbook or the media, not necessarily history just people from that state would know.

In this selection, we’ll explore what many call the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement, good ol’ Alabama. However, contrary to “Sweet Home Alabama,” we must remember that the original members of Lynyrd Skynyrd are actually from Florida. Second, we venture to the great state of the North Alaska which many would associate with its diverse arctic wildlife and beautiful mountain ranges as well as its onetime bitch of a governor who could see Russia from her house. Third, we go to the desert Grand Canyon state of Arizona known for the Gunfight at the O. K. Corral as well as illegal immigration laws that encourage racial profiling. Then, we go to the Appalachian mountain state of Arkansas famous for Wal-Mart, Bill Clinton, Johnny Cash, and offensive stereotypes. Next, it’s off to the great state of California, famous for Hollywood and gorgeous scenery as well as it’s interesting vast population that many call the Cereal State because they believe consists of fruits, nuts, and flakes. Then it’s on to Colorado whose unofficial anthem seems to now be John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High,” partly because of it’s high elevation (hint: its lowest point is higher than the highest point of my home state Pennsylvania) and the fact that pot is basically legal making some of the song lyrics to that famed John Denver song unintentionally hilarious. Next, it’s off to Connecticut known for Yale, Mark Twain, it’s discrimination of non-WASPs in their suburban communities during the 1940s as depicted in Gentleman’s Agreement, and the fact many celebrities live there for some reason. Then there’s Delaware known for being the first state to ratify the constitution, a haven for corporations, and not much else. After that is Florida where many people either venture for vacation or to retire as well as Disney World, Miami, and racist “Stand Your Ground Laws.” Finally, we have the state of Georgia home of Ted Turner as well as where General William Tecumseh Sherman marched to the sea in Gone With the Wind.

1. Alabama

Alabama is known as the home of famous African American scientist George Washington Carver who pioneered alternative crops to cotton for poorer farms such as peanuts, potatoes, soybeans, and yams. He contributed most of his life's work while a professor at the Tuskegee Institute. Still, this doesn't help that most people know him today as

Alabama is known as the home of famous African American scientist George Washington Carver who pioneered alternative crops to cotton for poorer farms such as peanuts, potatoes, soybeans, and yams. He contributed most of his life’s work while a professor at the Tuskegee Institute. Still, this doesn’t help that most people know him today as “the peanut guy.”

Abbreviation: AL

Nickname: “Heart of Dixie,” “Camellia State”
Capital: Montgomery
Largest City: Birmingham
Entered Union: December 14, 1819
Bird: Yellowhammer, Wild Turkey
Flower: Camellia, Oak-Leaf Hydrangea
Tree: Longleaf Pine

Celebrities: Hank Aaron, Harper Lee, George Washington Carver, Booker T. Washington, Helen Keller, George C. Wallace, Willie Mays, Hugo Black, Jesse Owens, Coretta Scott King, Hank Williams, Rosa Parks, Lionel Richie, Charles Barkley, Tallulah Bankhead, Werner von Braun, Jimmy Buffett, Truman Capote, Nat King Cole, Angela Davis, Louise Fletcher, Emmylou Harris, Evander Holyfield, Zora Neale Hurston, Bo Jackson, Mae Jemison, Martin Luther King Jr., Carl Lewis, Joe Louis, Jim Nabors, Terrell Owens, Satchel Paige, Wilson Pickett, Condoleezza Rice, Zelda Fitzgerald, Fred Thompson, Jimmy Wales,

Sports Teams: The University of Alabama Crimson Tide (NCAA Div. I)

Indian Tribes: Creek, Cherokee, Chickasaw, Alabama, Koati, and Choctaw, according to the Spanish accounts of the early 1500s. Most of these would be forced out west by with the Indian Removal Act in the 1830s. Had Mississippian culture in most of the state for about 500 years.

Best Known Moments: The Louisiana Purchase, the Trail of Tears in the 1830s, the Battle of Mobile Bay in 1864, site of the Scotsboro Boys scandal, headquarters for the Tuskegee Airmen during WWII, and the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott sparked by Rosa Parks as well as other demonstrations during the Civil Rights Movement, especially in Birmingham and Selma.

Often Associated With: cotton, slavery, the Civil Rights Movement, rednecks, Skynyrd fans, Southern Rock, “Sweet Home Alabama,” Lynyrd Skynyrd (despite being from Florida), rocketry, Huntsville, Mobile, “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.,” NASCAR Racing, To Kill a Mockingbird, racism, lynching, Mississippi River, Tuskegee Airmen, Montgomery, Birmingham, hogging college football state championships

2. Alaska

Alaska is renown for its gorgeous scenery and diverse wildlife now under threat by human activity and global warming. This painting depicts grizzly bears catching salmon from the river with the seagulls waiting for leftovers and a bald eagle soaring high.

Alaska is renown for its gorgeous scenery and diverse wildlife now under threat by human activity and global warming. This painting depicts grizzly bears catching salmon from the river with the seagulls waiting for leftovers and a bald eagle soaring high.

Abbreviation: AK
Nickname: “The Last Frontier”
Capital: Juneau
Largest City: Anchorage
Entered Union: January 3, 1959
Bird: Willow Ptarmigan
Flower: Forget-Me-Not
Tree: Sitka Spruce

Celebrities: Jewel (Kilcher), Sarah Palin, Valerie Plame Wilson, Bob Ross, Robert Stroud

Sports Teams: None.

Indian Tribes: Tinglit, Haida, Aleut, Inuit, Y’upik, Alutiiq, Inupiat, and Athabascan. Many of these are actually still living in their native region. Was the first stop of the Bering Strait people about 13,000 years ago.

Best Known Moments: Bering Strait Crossing 13,000 years ago, its purchase from Russia by William Seward in 1867, Klondike Gold Rush in 1896, 1925 Serum Run, Trans-Alaskan Pipeline construction during the 1970s, and Exxon-Valdez Oil Spill.

Often Associated With: Sarah Palin, oil, the Iditarod, polar bears, Northern Lights, moose, tundra and polar wilderness, wild frontiers, winter, glaciers, Totem poles, sled dog racing, Northern Exposure, caribou, Eskimos, huskies, igloos, puffins, bush pilots, aerial wolf hunting, “Bridge to Nowhere,” 24 hours of sunshine in summers, 24 hours of darkness in winters, glaciers, melting ice caps, oil spills, the Arctic, Denali, ANWAR, Fairbanks, Anchorage, Glacier Bay, hunting, weirdos, the Klondike, seals

3. Arizona

Arizona is home to the Grand Canyon which is one of the more famous national parks of the United States. It is 277 miles long and up to 18 miles wide with a depth of over a mile. It's also known to be about 2 billion years old.

Arizona is home to the Grand Canyon which is one of the more famous national parks of the United States. It is 277 miles long and up to 18 miles wide with a depth of over a mile. It’s also known to be about 2 billion years old.

Abbreviation: AZ
Nickname: “Grand Canyon State”
Capital: Phoenix
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: February 14, 1912
Bird: Cactus Wren
Flower: Saguaro Blossom
Tree: Palo Verde

Celebrities: Cochise, Alice Cooper, Geronimo, Gabrielle Giffords, Barry Goldwater, Zane Grey, Linda Ronstadt, John McCain, Frank Lloyd Wright, Sandra Day O’Connor, Cesar Chavez, Steven Spielberg, Stevie Nicks, Pat Tillman, Ira Hayes, Glenn Campbell, Waylon Jennings, Buck Owens, Wyatt Earp and his brothers, “Doc” Holliday, Joe Arpaio

Sports Teams: Arizona Cardinals (NFL), Phoenix Suns (NBA), Arizona Diamondbacks (MLB), Arizona Coyotes (NHL).

Indian Tribes: Anasazi, Mogollon, and Hohokam between c. 300 BCE to 1300. Navajo and Apache in the 15th century. Sobaipuri who were there since who knows when.

Best Known Moments: Stop during the Francisco Coronado expedition in the 1500s, Mexican American War, Apache Wars, Gunfight at the O. K. Corral, site of Japanese Internment camps in WWII, and the Tucson shooting.

Often Associated With: Southwest Indians, unfair laws related to targeting Hispanics on suspicion of illegal immigration, canyons, desert, cowboys, cattle, Mexicans, country music, the Grand Canyon, cacti, mesa, Petrified Forest, coyotes, ranches, Indian ruins, Tombstone, Spanish missions, Biosphere 2, London Bridge, Tempe, Yuma, Glen Canyon, Meteor Crater at Winslow, Tuscon, controversial sheriffs with questionable ideas about law enforcement, adobes, “The Grand Canyon Waltz,” Rocky Mountains, Continental Divide

4. Arkansas

Edward Washburn's 1858 The Arkansas Traveler depicts a wealthy farmer with a family of squatters. However, this painting is an icon of how many perceive Arkansas as a bunch of shiftless hillbillies which isn't helped by the state suffering a racial stigma from the American Civil War which helped lead to the Little Rock Nine.

Edward Washburn’s 1858 The Arkansas Traveler depicts a wealthy farmer with a family of squatters. However, this painting is an icon of how many perceive Arkansas as a bunch of shiftless hillbillies which isn’t helped by the state suffering a racial stigma from the American Civil War which helped lead to the Little Rock Nine.

Abbreviation: AR
Nickname: “The Natural State,” “The Razorback State”
Capital: Little Rock
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: June 15, 1836
Bird: Mockingbird
Flower: Apple Blossom
Tree: Pine

Celebrities: Sam Walton, Bill Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, Daisy Bates, Glen Campbell, Johnny Cash, John Grisham, Levon Helm, Douglas MacArthur, Scottie Pippen, Al Green, Billy Bob Thornton, James William Fullbright, Maya Angelou, Alan Ladd, Helen Gurley Brown, Charles Portis, Mike Huckabee, Eldridge Cleaver, Bill Hicks

Sports Teams: The University of Arkansas Razorbacks (NCAA Div. I Football)

Indian Tribes: Caddo, Quapaw, Osage, Cherokee, and Choctaw most of them forced out west by the 1830s Indian Removal Act.

Best Known Moments: Visits by Hernando de Soto, Jacques Marquette, Louis Jolliet, and Robert La Salle, the Louisiana Purchase, 1830s Trail of Tears, and the Little Rock Nine of 1957.

Often Associated With: Wal Mart, rednecks, bluegrass music, country music, racism, hillbillies, the Ozarks, Mississippi River, moonshine, Appalachia, Little Rock

5. California

Of course, California is a state of many diverse wealth and beauty. Yet, it's best remembered as the home of Hollywood which has been the film capital of the world for generations. Here is a painting of an assortment of iconic Old Hollywood screen legends we all knew and love throughout the ages.

Of course, California is a state of many diverse wealth and beauty. Yet, it’s best remembered as the home of Hollywood which has been the film capital of the world for generations. Here is a painting of an assortment of iconic Old Hollywood screen legends we all knew and love throughout the ages.

Abbreviation: CA
Nickname: “Golden State”
Capital: Sacramento
Largest City: Los Angeles
Entered Union: September 9, 1850
Bird: California Valley Quail
Flower: California Poppy
Tree: California Redwood

Celebrities: Gregory Peck, Clint Eastwood, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Harvey Milk, Cesar Chavez, George Takei, Tom Brady, Robert Redford, Beck, Julia Child, Carson Daly, Iva Toguri D’Aquino (a. k. a. “Tokyo Rose”), Cameron Crowe, Jeremy Renner, Keri Russell, Diane Keaton, Huey Lewis, Eva Longoria, Keb’ Mo,’ Kevin Costner, Oscar De La Hoya, Bo Derek, Laura Dern, Robert Duvall, John Cage, Ed Begley Jr., Leonardo DiCaprio, Joe DiMaggio, Tom Hanks, Jack London, Bret Harte, William Randolph Hearst, John C. Fremont, Steve Jobs, Angelina Jolie, Monica Lewinsky, Maroon 5, Will Ferrell, Mel Blanc, John Sutter, Andy Samberg, Walt Stack, Leland Stanford Jr., Gwen Stefani, Chuck Yeager, George Lucas, Jenifer Aniston, Green Day, Tyra Banks, Marilyn Monroe, John Muir, Gwenyth Paltrow, George S. Patton Jr., Nancy Pelosi, Sally Ride, William Saroyan, John Steinbeck, Levi Strauss, Phil Mickelson, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Father Junipero Serra, Shirley Temple, Danielle Steele, David Strathairn, Earl Warren, the Williams Sisters, Barry Bonds, Jeff Bridges and family, Josh Brolin and dad, Lindsey Buckingham, Nicholas Cage, the Carradines, the Barrymores, Sasha Cohen, Tiger Woods, Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio and his brothers, Isadora Duncan, Sally Field, Sean Astin, Peggy Fleming, Jodie Foster, Tim Burton, James Franco, Cher, Robert Frost, Dian Fossey, Merle Haggard, Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket), Thomas Kinkade, Bruce Lee, Jeff Gordon, Randy Newman, Danny Glover, Jason Giambi, Margaret Cho, Bryan Cranston, James Cromwell, David Crosby, Ice Cube, Cameron Diaz, Creedence Clearwater Revival, the Beach Boys, O. J. Simpson, Charles R. Schwab, Darryl Strawberry, Amy Tan, Natalie Wood, Kristi Yamaguchi, Steve Wozniack, Gene Hackman, Patty Hearst, Jonah Hill, John Williams, Flogging Molly, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Guns N’ Roses, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamil, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Mark Sanchez, Jason Schwartzman, Harry Shearer, Josh Groban, Jefferson Airplane, Dr. Dre, Bob Hope, Domencio “Domingo” Ghirardelli Sr., Steve Martin, Johnny Mathis, Buck Owens, Carlos Santanna, Dustin Hoffman, the Hustons, Metallica, Mark McGwire, Helen Hunt, Etta James, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Marion Jones, Ashley Judd, Pauline Kael, Michelle Kwan, Weird Al, the Doors, Gloria Grahame, Lynn Swann, Farley Granger, Van Halen, Billie Jean King, Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal, Yashiro Ishimoto, Janet Leigh, Jamie Lee Curtis, George Lopez, Courtney Love, Willie McCool, Audra McDonald, Robert McNamara, Liza Minnelli, Edward James Olmos, Sam Peckinpah, Sean Penn, Michael Richards, Tim Robbins, Aaron Rodgers, Pete Rozelle, Tony Romo, Jon Lovitz, the Coppolas, Rube Goldberg, the Grateful Dead, Marcus Benjamin, Michael Bay, Herb Alpert, Ansel Adams, Reggie Bush, Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, Jason Segel, Tupac Shakur, Richard Sherman, Robert Stack and many more I can’t include right now.

Sports Teams: Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, and San Francisco 49ers (NFL), Oakland Athletics, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, and San Diego Padres (MLB), Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, and Sacramento Kings (NBA), Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks, and San Jose Sharks (NHL), and UCLA Bruins and USC Trojans (NCAA Div. I Football and Basketball).

Indian Tribes: Inhabited by over 70 tribes and was one of the most diverse regions of Pre-Columbian America

Best Known Moments: Mexican-American War, Fremont Expedition, California Gold Rush of 1849, Compromise of 1850, The Donner Party Incident, Asian discrimination, mass migration in the 20th century due to Hollywood and the Great Depression, San Francisco Earthquake, Japanese Interment during WWII, lots of demonstrations, and other events

Often Associated With: liberals, hippies, stoners, Hollywood, celebrities, rich people, pop culture, Valley girls, surfer dudes, burnouts, weirdos, hipsters, Silicon Valley, gays, Latinos, Spanish Missions, desert, Redwood Forests, tree huggers, intellectuals, earthquakes, New Agers, wine, LA, cowboys, gold, Yosemite National Park, Death Valley, LAPD, race riots, illegal immigrants, pot, computer geeks, Asians, prison overcrowding, multiculturalism, water shortages, wildfires, a lot of TV shows and movies I can’t even count, Los Angeles Times, the Golden Gate Bridge, beach, hipsters, suburbs, cacti, Frisco, film noir, San Francisco Bay, Berkeley, San Diego, San Andreas Fault, homeless people, traffic congestion, smog, expensive real estate, Hollywood, urban hellscapes, gorgeous scenery, yuppies, Disneyland, Mojave Desert, Sierra Nevada, Cascade Range, bikers, Alcatraz, fancy houses, San Francisco Chronicle, gang wars, ghost towns, serial killers, military bases, Sonoran Desert, Sequoia, Bristlecone Pines, the Joshua Tree, Mill Valley, Rose Bowl Parade, Pasadena, Beverly Hills, Kings Canyon, Redwood National Park, Lassen Volcanic, Long Beach, Oakland, Monterrey, San Jose, volcanoes, drought, Stanford

6. Colorado

Pikes Peak is one of Colorado's best known places of natural beauty in the Rocky Mountains. Though discovered by a man named Zebulon Pike Jr. in 1806, it was this mountain that helped inspire Kathie Lee Bates to write

Pikes Peak is one of Colorado’s best known places of natural beauty in the Rocky Mountains. Though discovered by a man named Zebulon Pike Jr. in 1806, it was this mountain that helped inspire Kathie Lee Bates to write “America the Beautiful.”

Abbreviation: CO
Nickname: “Centennial State”
Capital: Denver
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: August 1, 1876
Bird: Lark Bunting
Flower: Rocky Mountain Columbine
Tree: Colorado Blue Spruce

Celebrities: Tim Allen, Molly Brown, M. Scott Carpenter, Mamie Eisenhower, Douglas Fairbanks Sr., Lon Chaney Sr., the South Park Guys, Don Cheadle, Antoinette Perry, Gordon Cooper, Kalpana Chawla, Jack Dempsey, John Elway, Lowell Thomas, Dalton Trumbo, Karl Rove, Adam McKay, Gary Hart, Temple Grandin , William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody

Sports Teams: Denver Broncos (NFL), Denver Nuggets (NBA), Colorado Rockies (MLB), and Colorado Avalanche (NHL)

Indian Tribes: Ancient Pueblo Peoples lived between 11200 to 3000 BCE, Ute, Arapaho, Cheyenne, Apache, and Comanche.

Best Known Moments: Zebulun Pike Expedition, Mexican American War, Indian Wars, Colorado Silver Boom, and two mass shootings at Columbine and Aurora.

Often Associated With: Rocky Mountains, high elevation, pot, stoners, hipsters, health nuts, hippies, outdoors stuff, desert, wilderness, John Denver, “Rocky Mountain High,” Continental Divide, snowcap mountains, multiculturalism, weirdos, New Agers, suburbs, hipsters, canyons, Indian ruins, South Park, cowboys, pioneers, tree huggers, Pikes Peak, skiing, Denver, Red Rocks Park, Black Canyon, Colorado Springs, Mesa Verde, Aspen, Grand Mesa, Cripple Creek, getting high, Columbine, Aurora

7. Connecticut

Like a lot of places in New England Connecticut is well known for its picturesque scenery and towns with fixtures like barns and steeple churches. Kind of explains why so many celebrities tend to live there.

Like a lot of places in New England Connecticut is well known for its picturesque scenery and towns with fixtures like barns and steeple churches. Kind of explains why so many celebrities tend to live there.

Abbreviation: CT
Nickname: “Constitution State,” “Nutmeg State”
Capital: Hartford
Largest City: Bridgeport
Entered Union: January 9, 1788
Bird: American Robin
Flower: Mountain Laurel
Tree: Charter White Oak

Celebrities: Katharine Hepburn, Ethan Allen, P. T. Barnum, Mark Twain, Suzanne Collins, J. P. Morgan, George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush, Charles Dow, Jackie Robinson, Eli Whitney, Noah Webster, Ralph Nader, Norman Lear, Seth MacFarlane, Cordell Hull, Robert Mitchum, Nathan Hale, Charles Ives, Roger Sherman, Christopher Walken, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Richard Belzer, Ernest Borgnine, Kevin Bacon, Ed Begley, Art Carney, Glenn Close, Paul Giamatti, Elia Kazan, Matt Lauer, David Letterman, Christopher Lloyd, Israel Putnam, Frederick March, John Ratzenberger, Rosiland Russell, Kyra Sedgwick, Ed Sullivan, Sam Waterson, Walter Camp, Bruce Jenner, William F. Buckley Jr., Charlotte Perkins Gillman, Madeleine L’ Engle, Dr. Benjamin Spock, Philip Roth, Maurice Sendak, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Wallace Stevens, Samuel Colt, Charles Goodyear, Martha Stewart, Ann Coulter, Denis Leary, Joan Rivers, Andy Rooney, Benedict Arnold, John Brown, 50 Cent, Leonard Bernstein, Dave Brubeck, Michael Bolton, the Carpenters, Dean Acheson, Henry Kissinger, Lyman Hall, Joe Lieberman, Clare Boothe Luce, Gideon Welles, Jonathan Edwards, Helen Keller, Alfred P. Sloan, John Trumbull, Frederick Law Olmstead, Glen Beck, Phil Donahue, Igor Sikorsky, Anne Baxter, Marilyn Chambers, Michael J. Fox, Justin Long, Ted Knight, Dylan McDermott, Wally Lamb, Annie Leibowitz, Robert Ludlum, Stephanie Meyer, Arthur Miller, Ida Tarbell, Oliver Wolcott

Sports Teams: UConn Huskies (NCAA Div. I Basketball), Quinnipac University Bobcats (NCAA Div. I Basketball and Hockey), Yale Bulldogs (NCAA Div. I)

Indian Tribes: Mohegan, Pequot, Paugusetts, and others. Probably died from war and small pox.

Best Known Moments: One of the original 13 Colonies, American Revolution, Discrimination in suburban communities in the 20th century, and school shooting at Newtown.

Often Associated With: Yale, rich people, New England, intellectuals, suburbs, old money, picturesque countryside, lighthouses, seaside, sailboats, small farms, Gentlemen’s Agreement, celebrities apparently, Bridgeport, Gillette Castle, New Haven, harbors, golfing, covered bridges, Darien, Waterbury, steeple churches, spoiled prep school kids, Newtown

8. Delaware

“Recruiting Peter Stuyvesant's Army for the Recapture of Fort Casimir,” is an 1838 paining by Albertus Del Orient Browere. Of course, many don't know that Delaware used to belong to the Dutch West India Company before the Brits seized it during the Second Anglo-Dutch War. Of course, Fort Casmir was later renamed New Castle and its still that way today.

“Recruiting Peter Stuyvesant’s Army for the Recapture of Fort Casimir,” is an 1838 paining by Albertus Del Orient Browere. Of course, many don’t know that Delaware used to belong to the Dutch West India Company before the Brits seized it during the Second Anglo-Dutch War. Of course, Fort Casmir was later renamed New Castle and its still that way today.

Abbreviation: DE
Nickname: “First State,” “Diamond State”
Capital: Dover
Largest City: Wilmington
Entered Union: December 7, 1787
Bird: Blue Hen Chicken
Flower: Peach Blossom
Tree: American Holly

Celebrities: Joe Biden, Victor Marie DuPont, Thomas McKean, Dr. Oz, Ryan Philippe, Caesar Rodney, Aubrey Plaza, George Thorogood, Johnny Weir, John Dickinson, Anne Rogers Clark, Teri Polo, Judge Reinhold

Sports Teams: Delaware Fightn’ Blue Hens and Delaware State Hornets (NCAA Div. I)

Indian Tribes: The Lenni Lenape or the Delaware and the Nanticoke. Probably wiped out by war and smallpox

Best Known Moments: Henry Hudson expedition of 1609, one of the original 13 Colonies, the American Revolution, and once part of Pennsylvania as well as was the first state to ratify the constitution.

Often Associated With: rich people, pro-business environment, corporation haven, rail and bus transportation for senators, ferry boats, lighthouses, DuPont, Wilmington, Dover, Old Swedes Holy Trinity Church, New Castle, beaches, Delaware River, NASCAR racing, Combat Zone Wrestling, not much else

9. Florida

Florida's Everglades are tropical wetlands and the largest tropical wilderness of the US and largest wilderness of any kind east of the Mississippi. It was made a National Park to support a fragile ecosystem that's home to 36 threatened species, 350 kinds of birds, 300 species of fish, 40 species of mammals, and 50 species of reptiles. Yet, even its natural park status doesn't prevent this swamp of beauty from suffering environmental duress.

Florida’s Everglades are tropical wetlands and the largest tropical wilderness of the US and largest wilderness of any kind east of the Mississippi. It was made a National Park to support a fragile ecosystem that’s home to 36 threatened species, 350 kinds of birds, 300 species of fish, 40 species of mammals, and 50 species of reptiles. Yet, even its natural park status doesn’t prevent this swamp of beauty from suffering environmental duress.

Abbreviation: FL
Nickname: “Sunshine State”
Capital: Tallahassee
Largest City: Jacksonville
Entered Union: March 3, 1845
Bird: Northern Mockingbird
Flower: Orange Blossom
Tree: Sabal Palmetto

Celebrities: Jeb Bush, Osceola, Janet Reno, Tom Petty, Perez Hilton, Wayne Brady, Johnny Depp, Faye Dunaway, Ray Charles, Sidney Poitier, Bob Ross, Mickey Rourke, Rick Sanchez, Wesley Snipes, Bob Vila, Zora Neale Hurston, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lil’ Wayne, Debbie Harry, Jim Morrison, Vanilla Ice, Enrique Inglesias, Dante Culpepper, Chris Evert, Hulk Hogan, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Ray Lewis, Chad Ochocinco, Alex Rodriguez, Deion Sanders, Maria Sharapova, Emmit Smith, Tim Tebow, Charles E. Merrill, A. Philip Randolph, William H. Macy, Daniel Tosh, Charles E. Merrill, Pat Boone, The Allman Brothers Band, Andy Garcia, Julio Inglesias, Dave Barry, Jeff Lindsay, Jimmy Wales

Sports Teams: Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Bucaneers, and Miami Dolphins (NFL), Miami Heat and Orlando Magic (NBA), Tampa Bay Rays and Miami Marlins (MLB), Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL), Florida State Seminoles, Florida Gators, and Miami Hurricanes (NCAA Div. I, particularly football)

Indian Tribes: Apalachee, Timucua, Ais, Tocobaga, Callusa, and Tequesta at least by the time Juan Ponce de Leon was there. Seminoles actually came there in the 19th century when driven off their ancestral lands.

Best Known Moments: First contact with Europeans through Juan Ponce de Leon, US clash with the Seminoles, Bush v. Gore, a series of hurricanes and a lot of crime stories including the Casey Anthony trial and the Trayvon Martin killing.

Often Associated With: swamp, Disney World, senior citizens, rednecks, weirdos, the Everglades, Miami, Dexter, psycho killers, beaches, alligators, unbearable heat, hurricanes, weirdos, old retired Jews, Cubans, mosquitoes, strip clubs, NASA, Cape Canaveral, racist “Stand Your Ground” laws, Orlando, Key West, sunshine, SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, colorful houses, suburbs, Jimmy Buffet fans, NASCAR racing, swing state politics, Bush v. Gore, hippies, pro-wrestling, trailer parks, tornadoes, oranges, palm trees, marlins, manatees, motorboats, water skis, tourism, Daytona Beach, Miami Beach, Florida panther, multiculturalism, Hawaiian shirts, golfing, exotic birds, herons, tabloid magazines, Sarasota, Pensacola, St. Augustine,  Jacksonville, Tampa Bay, Miami Herald, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Panama City, Tebowing, annoying Christian football players, Daytona Beach, Daytona 500, Southern Rock, St. Petersburg, Black Seminoles, subtropical to tropical settings, crocodiles, cypress trees

10. Georgia

Callaway Gardens is a family resort area in Georgia as well as a National Historic Landmark. Founded by a couple who wanted to save a rare species of Azaela as well as play host to other native plants, the gardens include a number of lakes, golf courses, scenic drive, an enclosed butterfly habitat, hiking trails, a horticultural center, a butterfly center and so much more. Pictured here is the Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel which must play host to a lot of weddings.

Callaway Gardens is a family resort area in Georgia as well as a National Historic Landmark. Founded by a couple who wanted to save a rare species of Azaela as well as play host to other native plants, the gardens include a number of lakes, golf courses, scenic drive, an enclosed butterfly habitat, hiking trails, a horticultural center, a butterfly center and so much more. Pictured here is the Ida Cason Callaway Memorial Chapel which must play host to a lot of weddings.

Abbreviation: GA
Nickname: “Empire State of the South,” “Peach State”
Capital: Atlanta
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: January 2, 1788
Bird: Brown Thrasher
Flower: Cherokee Rose
Tree: Live Oak

Celebrities: Jimmy Carter, Ty Cobb, Ray Charles, Margaret Mitchell, Juliette Gordon Low, “Doc” Holliday, Gladys Knight, Little Richard, John C. Fremont, Joel Chandler Harris, Larry Holmes, Holly Hunter, Flannery O’Connor, Otis Redding, Burt Reynolds, Julia Roberts, Jackie Robinson, Ryan Seacrest, Clarence Thomas, Alice Walker, Joanne Woodward, Martin Luther King Jr., the Allman Brothers, Atlanta Rhythm Section, Lee Atwater, Andre 3000, Mary J. Blige, Mel Blount, James Brown, Reggie Brown, Luke Bryan, Rosalynn Carter, Mark David Chapman, Ossie Davis, Paula Deen, Pretty Boy Floyd, Jeff Foxworthy, Newt Gingrich, Nancy Grace, Cee Lo Green, Nathaniel Greene, Button Gwinnett, Todd Haley, Lyman Hall, Oliver Hardy, Hulk Hogan, Ed Helms, Bill Hicks, Sterling Holloway, Bobby Jones, Stacy Keach, Deforest Kelley, Spike Lee, Lil’ Jon, James Longstreet, Ludacris, William H. Macy, Jack McBrayer, Blind Willie Mc Tell, Johnny Mercer, Elijah Muhammad, Deborah Norville, Terrell Owens, Antwan “Big Boi” Patton, Kanye West, George Foster Peabody, Tyler Perry, Ma Rainey, Jeannette Rankin, Sugar Ray Robinson, Dean Rusk, Soulja Boy, Alexander Stephens, Chris Tucker, Hines Ward, Woodrow Wilson, Miriam Hopkins

Sports Teams: Atlanta Braves (MLB), Atlanta Hawks (NBA), Atlanta Falcons (NFL), Georgia Bulldogs and Georgia Yellow Jackets (NCAA Div. I)

Indian Tribes: Inhabited by Mississippian Mound Building culture. By European contact the Creek, Cherokee, and Yamasee prior to being kicked out with the Indian Removal Act in the 1830s.

Best Known Moments: Founding by James Ogelthorpe as debtor colony, one of the original 13 Colonies, American Revolution, Trail of Tears, aw Civil War battles of Chickamauga, Kenneshaw Mountain, and Atlanta as well as Sherman’s March to the Sea and Andersonville, and hosted the 1996 Olympics.

Often Associated With: slavery, cotton, Gone with the Wind, CNN, Ted Turner, “Georgia On My Mind,” rednecks, plantations, rich Southerners, Savannah, Atlanta, very loose gun laws, peaches, peanuts, Masters Tournament, The Weather Channel, TCM, TBS, TNT, Cartoon Network, Coca-Cola, racism, lynching, Southern accents, Michael Vick, Southern Rock, “Midnight Train to Georgia,” southern belles, Southern hospitality, Appalachian Mountains, R&B music, golfing, Stone Mountain, CDC, Delta Airlines, Chick-fil-A, Warm Springs, Pine Mountains, Andersonville, Southern Gothic Literature, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,  golfing, Callaway Gardens

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One response to “In These United States: Part 1 – Alabama to Georgia

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