So we’ve been to about 30 states out of this large country while we still have 20 to go. Of course, you probably notice that each state in the American country has its own culture and history as well as its share of celebrities. In this selection, I’ll cover the states from New Mexico to South Carolina. First, we’re off to New Mexico known for its natural desert beauty, vibrant Hispanic and Indian artwork, Spanish Missions, nuclear testing at Los Alamos, and Breaking Bad. Perhaps it was a good thing that Bugs Bunny took that wrong turn at Albuquerque since we know that’s where Walter White lives. Second, we’re on to New York perhaps most famous for New York City which has Broadway, Times Square, network news stations, the Empire State Building, Lady Liberty, and lots of other things. It also has a lot of stuff upstate, too, not that anyone’s interested. Third, we go to North Carolina known for tobacco, Charlotte, Raleigh, Blue Ridge Mountains, Kitty Hawk, the Biltmore, and Duke. Then there’s North Dakota, home of the Badlands, film site for Fargo, and not much else. After that, it’s off to Ohio which is probably the place your dad would go if he went on a business trip and home of the Cleveland Browns. Yet, despite it being the birthplace of 7 presidents as well as a lot of inventors and astronauts, there isn’t much to see aside from their amusement parks like Six Flags and Cedar Point. Then, there’s Oklamoma! where the wind blows sweeping from the plain, and the waving wheat can sure smell sweet when the wind comes right behind the rain. Of course, thanks to Rogers and Hammerstein, you can’t get the song out of your head when you hear about Oklahoma. Next, it’s off to Oregon, which everyone remembers as the destination for the Oregon Trail as well as Portland, the Columbia River, and legal euthanasia. Make sure you don’t end up with dysentery on the way there. After that, we’re off to my home state Pennsylvania known for Pittsburgh and Philadelphia as well as using groundhogs for weather reports. Actually, we have local news to predict the weather for us but sometimes they could be just as wrong as Punxsutawney Phil is every year. Anyway, go Steelers! Then we move on to Rhode Island which isn’t really an island but is home to America’s earliest synagogue as well as served as a popular tourist destination for rich folk. Finally, we get to South Carolina which many of you know was the first state to secede from the Union after the election of 1860 as well as the childhood home of Stephen Colbert that he usually says on his show.
31. New Mexico
New Mexico is home to some of the oldest European buildings in the United States, some of these are over 400 years old and predate Jamestown. The Franciscans built these adobe style churches which have now become resonant with Southwest architecture and the Spanish mission style in the US.
Nickname: “Land of Enchantment”
Capital: Santa Fe
Largest City: Albuquerque
Entered Union: January 6, 1912
Bird: Greater Roadrunner
Tree: Colorado Pinyon
Celebrities: Billy the Kid, Jeff Bezos, Kit Carson, Neil Patrick Harris, Georgia O’Keefe, Conrad Hilton, Pat Garrett, Cochise, Geronimo, Tony Hillerman, Cormac McCarthy, George R. R. Martin, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Anna Gunn, Val Kilmer, Demi Moore, Freddie Prinze Jr., John Denver, Jim Morrison
Sports Teams: None
Indian Tribes: Clovis culture and later Apache, Navajo, Ute, Pueblo, Hopi, and Comanche.
Best Known Moments: Mexican American War, Indian Wars, and atomic bomb testing at Los Alamos.
Often Associated With: hippies, Mexicans, Breaking Bad, meth, hipsters, cowboys, desert, cacti, canyons, Southwest Indians, adobes, Spanish Missions, atomic testing, Santa Fe Trail, Los Alamos, Little Miss Sunshine, cattle ranches, UFO sightings, Roswell, multiculturalism, water shortages, Indian ruins, mesas, poverty, coyotes, roadrunners, White Sands, Carlsbad Caverns, Lechuguilla Cave, Sky City or Acoma Pueblo, Taos Ski Valley, skiing, Rocky Mountains, Continental Divide, Shiprock, Rio Grande Gorge, Route 66, 1950s cars, Les Paul music, chili peppers, cattle skulls, cattle ranching, New Mexican Spanish, Mexicans, Georgia O’Keefe paintings, neon motel signs
32. New York
No monument in New York has never become so iconic with the state as the Statue of Liberty in New York City’s harbor. This female colossus of 151 ft and an inch has been seen as a beacon of liberty lifting her light beside the golden door for those tired, poor, and huddled masses yearning to be free. For many immigrants, her presence reminded that they have come to America.
Nickname: “Empire State”
Largest City: New York City
Entered Union: July 26, 1788
Tree: Sugar Maple
Celebrities: Jimmy Fallon, FDR, Eleanor Roosevelt, Teddy Roosevelt, Tony Bennett, Adrien Brody, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Lucille Ball, Susan B. Anthony, Edgar Allan Poe, Danny Kaye, Alice Faye, James Fenimore Cooper, Washington Irving, Alexander Hamilton, Tom Cruise, Francis Ford Coppola, Aaron Copland, Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Lou Gehrig, George and Ira Gershwin, Billy Joel, George Eastman, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Jackie Gleason, Rudy Giuliani, Julia Ward Howe, Fiorello La Guardia, Henry and William James, Edith Wharton, John Jay, Ed Koch, Jerry Seinfeld, Herman Melville, Dorothy Day, Clarence Day, Richard Dreyfuss, Patty Duke, David Duchovny, Vin Diesel, Nora Ephron, Arthur Miller, Eddie Murphy, Carroll O’ Connor, Colin Powell, Eugene O’Neill, Nancy Reagan, the Rockefellers, Tim Russert, Al Sharpton, J. D. Salinger, Al Smith, Donald Trump, Barbara Striesand, the Three Stooges, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Martin Van Buren, Boss Tweed, Luther Vandross, Gore Vidal, Tony Kushner, Jake LaMotta, Regis Philbin, Mario Puzo, the Rosenbergs, Denzel Washington, Walt Whitman, Mark Zuckerberg, Ulysses S. Grant, Elliot Spitzer, Millard Fillmore, Chester A. Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Aaron Burr, Shirley Chisholm, Thomas Dewey, Lucky Luciano, Bugsy Siegel, Meyer Lansky, June Allyson, Alan Arkin, Anne Bancroft, Ann Blyth, Clara Bow, James Caan, Beverly Sills, Daniel Sickles, James Cagney, Paul Muni, Edward G. Robinson, Claudette Colbert, Claire Danes, Sammy Davis Jr. Kirk Douglas, Matt Dillon, Fran Drescher, Jimmy Durante, Louis Comfort Tiffany, Judy Holliday, Scarlett Johansen, Wolf Blitzer, Jane Fonda, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Paulette Goddard, Harvey Milk, Elliot Gould, Anne Hathaway, Susan Hayward, Rita Hayworth, Veronica Lake, Barbara Stanwyck, Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Walter Matthau, Ethel Merman, Anthony Perkins, Joseph Barbera, John Zogby, Christopher Reeve, George Raft, Bill Pullman, Thelma Ritter, Mickey Rooney, Ray Romano, Martin Scorsese, Sylvia Sidney, Rod Steiger, Mel Gibson, Oliver Stone, Gene Tierney, Claire Trevor, Mae West, George Carlin, Jay Leno, the Marx Brothers, Rosie O’Donnell, Chris Rock, Demetri Martin, Lady Gaga, Pat Benatar, Fiona Apple, Mary J. Blige, Maria Callas, Mariah Carey, Jay-Z, John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Alicia Keys, Carole King, Cyndi Lauper, Jennifer Lopez, Laura Nyro, David Geffen, Lou Reed, Paul Simon, Notorious BIG, 50 Cent, Mos Def, LL Cool J, Nicki Minaj, John Jacob Astor, J. P. Morgan, Bernie Madoff, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Frederick Douglass, Arnold Rothstein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Lennon, Jon Stewart, Terry Gross, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Whoopi Goldberg, Peggy Guggenheim, Alan Greenspan, Oscar Hammerstein II, Gregory Hines, Matt Lauer, Norman Mailer, Ogden Nash, Joyce Carol Oates, Thomas Pynchon, Norman Rockwell, Marion Davies, Shirley Booth, William Bendix, Dewitt Clinton, John Gotti, David Sedaris, Gertrude B. Elion, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Mick Foley, Hank Greenberg, Sandy Koufax, Alex Rodriguez, Frank Serpico, Anderson Cooper, Tony Danza, Rodney Dangerfield, Larry David, Neil Diamond, Timothy McVeigh, Elena Kagan, Harry Houdini, Margaret Sanger, and many I can’t include here.
Sports Teams: Buffalo Bills (NFL), Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks (NBA), Buffalo Sabres, New York Rangers, and New York Islanders (NHL), New York Yankees and New York Mets (MLB), Columbia Lions and Syracuse Orangemen (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Mahican, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Seneca. Headquarters for the Iroquois Confederacy.
Best Known Moments: Founded by Dutch as New Netherland, seized by the British in the 1600s, one of the original 13 Colonies, saw action in the French and Indian War with the debacle at Fort William Henry, saw battles during the American Revolution most famously Saratoga, site of the Burr-Hamilton duel, gateway for a lot of European immigrants, Seneca Falls, had draft riots during the Civil War, Tammany Hall political machine, Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in the early 1900s, Harlem Renaissance, 1929 stock market crash, Woodstock, 9/11, and Hurricane Sandy
Often Associated With: New York City, “New York, New York,” Frank Sinatra, crime, a lot of movies, books, plays, and TV shows, Broadway, theater, NYPD, network news, NBC, Empire State Building, 9/11, Chrysler Building, rudeness, swearing, the Met Museum, the Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Washington Square, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Madison Square Gardens, the Bronx Zoo, high end stores, multiculturalism, folk music, New York accents, Jews, Italians, inner city poverty, Wall Street, Hudson River, the Catskills, Ellis Island, Statue of Liberty, Buffalo, Syracuse, lots of celebrities, Erie Canal, subway system, traffic, Brooklyn Bridge, Grand Central Station, Penn Station, Adirondacks, Saratoga Race Course, intellectuals, Long Island, suburbs, unions, dirty construction workers, bad mouthing cops, Irish cops, Tammany Hall, Old Dutch Church of Sleepy Hollow, Knickerbocker Tales, corruption, Tarrytown, Yankees fans, Mets fans, Hyde Park, Sagamore Hill, Roosevelts, Oyster Bay, Woody Allen, Billy Joel, gangsters, old mansions, skyscrapers, dirtiness, Puerto Ricans, Harlem, liberals, Lake Placid, World Trade Center, Niagara Falls, Sing Sing, water pollution, Love Canal, Grant’s Tomb, West Point, gays, hipsters, hippies, Occupy Wall Street protesters, riots, Columbia, Cornell, Syracuse, NYU, Gershwin, jazz, Harlem Globetrotters, rich people, high fashion, Central Park, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Fort Ticonderoga, weirdos, pizza, skiing, Fire Island, the Hamptons, expensive real estate, magazines, publishing companies, gorgeous scenery, wilderness, farming, Finger Lakes, NYSE, Yonkers, New York Times, New York Post, New York Daily News, Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, Belmont Stakes, Rochester religious revivals, comic books, governors soliciting hookers, hookers, vice president shooting well known statesman who’s on the $10 bill in a duel, Cooperstown, Sunnyside, Philipsburg Manor, Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Staten Island ferry, Hell’s Kitchen, Harlem, Greenwich Village, Alphabet City, sexting congressmen with funny names, Woodstock, Chautauqua
33. North Carolina
It was at today’s Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina where two Dayton, Ohio bicycle mechanics known as the Wright Brothers made their first controlled powered airplane flights on December 17, 1903. After the flights, the two walked to Kitty Hawk and sent a telegram to the Weather Bureau informing of their success. Of course, Kitty Hawk became world-famous because it was the nearest settlement to the site at the time.
Nickname: “Tar Heel State,” “Old North State”
Largest City: Charlotte
Entered Union: November 21, 1789
Celebrities: Charlie Rose, David Brinkley, John Coltrane, Ava Gardner, Bob and Elizabeth Dole, John Edwards, both Dale Earnhardts, Billy Graham, Andy Griffith, O. Henry, Andrew Johnson, Michael Jordan, Dolley Madison, Thelonious Monk, Richard Petty, Edward R. Murrow, Carl Sandburg, James K. Polk, James Taylor, Billy Strayhorn, Doc Watson, Roberta Flack, Clay Aiken, William Blount, Braxton Bragg, Robert Byrd, the Greensboro Four, Edward Snowden, Cecil B. DeMille, Zach Galifianakis, David Sedaris, Amy Sedaris, Kathryn Grayson, Michael C. Hall, Ken Jeong, Star Jones, Vince McMahon, Julianne Moore, Jaime Pressley, Soupy Sales, Tori Amos, George Clinton, Charlie Daniels, Earl Scruggs, Nina Simone, Loudon Wainwright III, Howard Cosell, Nicholas Sparks, Willie Parker, Brandon Tate, Virginia Dare, Richard Jordan Gatling, Afeni Shakur, Maya Angelou, Chang and Eng Bunker, Orson Scott Card, Ric Flair, Blackbeard, John Tesh, Kristi Yamaguchi
Sports Teams: Carolina Panthers (NFL), Charlotte Hornets (NBA), Carolina Hurricanes (NHL), Duke University Blue Devils, North Carolina Tar Heels, North Carolina Spartans, and North Carolina State Wolfpack (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Mississippian culture, later Chowanoke, Roanoke, Pamlico, Coree, Cape Fear Indians, Meherrin, Cherokee, Tuscarora, Cheraw, Waxhaw, Saponi, Waccamaw, and Catawba. If not killed with war and small pox, then kicked out by Indian Removal during the 1830s.
Best Known Moments: Roanoke settlement, one of the original 13 Colonies, saw action at King’s Mountain and Guilford Courthouse, Trail of Tears, saw the first flight at Kitty Hawk, the Civil Rights Movement sit-ins at Greensboro, and others.
Often Associated With: rich people, rednecks, military personnel, Duke, Great Smoky Mountains, Guilford Courthouse, beaches, Roanoke, Kitty Hawk, King’s Mountain, tobacco, Atlantic Beach, NASCAR racing, golfing, plantation mansions, slavery, racism, bluegrass, politeness, Southern hospitality, Southern Gothic Literature, Golden Age piracy, intellectuals, Charlotte, lighthouses, swing state politics, Krispy Kreme, Outer Banks, Biltmore House Gardens, presidential candidates cheating on cancer stricken wives and fathering love children, hurricanes, Roanoke Island, Fort Bragg, barbecue, lighthouses, Cherohala Skyway, Old Fort, military bases, Graveyard Fields, Atlantic Beach, Flat Rock, Fort Macon, Winston-Salem, Wilmington, Asheboro, Greensboro, Durham, Kill Devil Hills, Moore’s Creek, Ft. Raleigh
34. North Dakota
North Dakota’s Theodore Roosevelt National Park is home to its legendary badlands in the western part of the state. Teddy Roosevelt came to these Badlands to hunt bison during his 1883 trip and returned in 1884 to heal from one of the darkest moments of his life after experiencing the loss of his wife and mother on the same day. His hunting trips and ranching out West in the 1880s would be very influential to Roosevelt’s beliefs in conservation.
Nickname: “Peace Garden State”
Largest City: Fargo
Entered Union: November 2, 1889
Bird: Western Meadowlark
Flower: Wild Prairie Rose
Tree: American Elm
Celebrities: Maxwell Anderson, Angie Dickinson, Louis L’Amor, Roger Maris, Lawrence Welk, Louise Erdich, Peggy Lee, Phil Jackson, Sacagawea, Ann Sothern, Wiz Khalifa, Bobby Vee
Sports Teams: North Dakota State Bison (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Mandan, Dakota, Blackfeet, Cheyenne, Chippewa, Arikara, Hidasta, and Yanktoni. May have been inhabited as early as 11,000 years ago.
Best Known Moments: Louisiana Purchase, Lewis and Clark Expedition, Indian Wars, and not much else.
Often Associated With: Fargo, Badlands, Fargo, oil and gas drilling, not having a lot of people, Theodore Roosevelt National Park, Scandinavians, Plains Indians, Lutherans, ice fishing, skiing, whiteness, snowmobiles, snow, not much happening, Bonanzaville, Ft. Union Trading Post, International Peace Gardens, Elkhorn Ranch, Knife River Indian Village, Dunseith, Minden, Great Plains, moose, Lake Sakakawea, more men than women, New Salem, Painted Canyon, bison, dinosaur fossils, wild horses, elk, prairie dogs, prairie, grassland, bighorn sheep
Ohio is home to the Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus. This glass botanical palace was built in 1895 and now serves as a horticultural and educational institution showcasing exotic plant collections, special exhibitions and artworks by renown glass sculptor Dave Chihuly. Contains over 400 species in all.
Nickname: “Buckeye State”
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: March 1, 1803
Flower: Scarlet Carnation
Celebrities: Ulysses S. Grant, William McKinley, Warren G. Harding, William Howard Taft, the first two John D. Rockefellers, John Glenn, Annie Oakley, Dean Martin, Jesse Owens, Drew Carey, the Wright Brothers, Bob Hope, Hart Crane, George Armstrong Custer, Erma Bombeck, Halle Berry, Clarence Darrow, Maya Lin, Toni Morrison, Pete Rose, Roy Rogers, Steven Spielberg, James A. Garfield, Rutherford B. Hayes, Benjamin Harrison, William Henry Harrison, Clark Gable, Thomas Edison, Zane Grey, William Dean Howells, Eddie Rickenbacker, Pontiac, Jack Paar, Paul Newman, Jack Nicklaus, Arthur Schlesinger Jr., William Tecumseh Sherman, Gloria Steinem, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Tecumseh, James Thurber, Jerry Springer, Ted Turner, Neil Armstrong, Sherwood Anderson, Ambrose Bierce, Martin Mull, Harlan Ellison, Wes Craven, P. J. O’Rourke, David Pogue, Jerry Seigel and Joe Schuster, Lowell Thomas, R. L. Stine, Lou Wasserman, Jack Warner, John Dean, John Boehner, Dennis Kucinich, Clement Vallandingham, Victoria Woodhull, George Bellows, Theda Bara, Teri Garr, Arsenio Hall, Margaret Hamilton, Woody Harrelson, Steve Harvey, Patricia Heaton, Ed O’Neil, Eleanor Parker, Sarah Jessica Parker, Dan Patrick, Anne Heche, Hal Holbrook, Katie Holmes, Terrence Howard, Chrissie Hynde, Alison Janney, Tyrone Power, George Clooney, Tim Conway, Dorothy Dandridge, Doris Day, Phyllis Diller, Phil Donahue, Brian Donlevy, Ted Levine, John Lithgow, Rob Lowe, Paul Lynde, Hugh Downs, Carmen Electra, Jamie Farr, Alan Freed, Burgess Meredith, Debra Monk, Fred Williard, Debra Winger, Jonathan Winters, Jack Hanna, the Naked Cowboy, Dave Grohl, Phil Ochs, Pure Prairie League, the O’Jays, Jim Brickman, Tracy Chapman, Isley Brothers, Boz Scaggs, Billy Strayhorn, Devo, Marilyn Manson, John Legend, Danny Thomas, Joe Walsh, Frank Yankovic, Philip Sheridan, Harvey Firestone, Jim Lovell, Charles Kettering, Judith Resnick, Chad Billingsley, Ken Griffey Jr., James Harrison, LeBron James, Kenesaw Mountain Landis, Chuck Noll, Ben Roethlisberger, Randy Walker, Cy Young, Herbert H. Dow, Charles Keating, George Steinbrenner, Roger Ailes, Larry Flynt, John Brown, Elizabeth Blackwell, Jeffrey Dahmer, Ariel Castro, Charles Manson, Norman Vincent Peale, Tenskwatawa, Langston Hughes, George Remus, Macy Gray
Sports Teams: Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals (NFL), Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians (MLB), Cleveland Cavaliers (NBA), Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL), Ohio State Buckeyes, Ohio Bobcats, Cincinnati Bearcats, Kent State Golden Flashes, Akron Zips, Miami Redhawks, and Toledo Rockets (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Early Mississippian culture. Adena, Hopewell, Wyandot, Miami, Shawnee, Ottawa, Mingo, and Delaware. May have been inhabited 11,000 years ago.
Best Known Moments: Northwest Territory, Pontiac’s Rebellion, saw action in the War of 1812 with Oliver Hazard Perry’s victory in Lake Erie, industrialization, Kent State shooting, and others.
Often Associated With: Cleveland, Cincinnati, Kent State, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, birthplace of 7 presidents, a lot of inventors, and several astronauts, Cedar Point, Amish Country, Toledo, Dayton, Six Flags, Steubenville, Great Lakes, Ohio River, Kings Island, OSU, businessmen, manufacturing, Rust Belt, swing state politics, golfing, suburbs, corruption, skyscrapers, unions, farming, rednecks, Erie Canal, Franklin Park Conservatory, Wapakoneta, Lake Erie Islands, Marietta, Copperhead lawyers who accidentally shoot themselves dead while defending a client
Oklahoma is known as the “Sooner State” because many of its white settlers from the South came to parts of this state before they were officially opened to them. Of course, since this area was once known as Indian Territory, you can imagine that the Indian tribes who were forced reside there decades before were not happy.
Nickname: “Sooner State”
Capital: Oklahoma City
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: November 16, 1907
Bird: Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher
Celebrities: Will Rogers, Gene Autry, Garth Brooks, Lon Chaney Jr. Gordon Cooper, Ralph Ellison, John Hope Franklin, James Garner, Vince Gill, Woody Guthrie, Ron Howard, Louis L’Amour, Shannon Lucid, Mickey Mantle, Reba McEntire, Wiley Post, Tony Randall, Oral Roberts, Jim Thorpe, Carrie Underwood, Pretty Boy Floyd, Wilma Mankiller, Sequoyah, Tommy Franks, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Kristin Chenoweth, Joan Crawford, Blake Edwards, Bill Hader, Van Heflin, James Mardsen, Rue McClanahan, Lee Pace, Vera Miles, Tim Blake Nelson, Chuck Norris, Brad Pitt, Mary Kay Place, Hoyt Axton, Chet Baker, J. J. Cale, Eddie Cochran, Patti Page, Leon Russell, Blake Shelton, Paul Harvey, Bill Moyers, Dr. Phil McGraw, Mary Hart, Dan Rowan, Judy Woodruff, Rick Bayless, Sylvan Goldman, T. Boone Pickens Jr., Sam Walton, Tony Hillerman, S. E. Hinton, Barry Sanders, Willie Stargell, Belle Starr, Anita Hill, Cornel West
Sports Teams: Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA), Oklahoma Stat Cowboys, and Oklahoma Sooners (NCAA Div. I).
Indian Tribes: Mississippian culture. Wichita, Osage, Quapaw, and Caddo. May have been inhabited as early as the Ice Age. Those Indians native there were bound to have company in the 1830s. Now home to at least 39 federally recognized tribes.
Best Known Moments: Louisiana Purchase, receiving place for Indians at the Trail of Tears, contention between Indians and whites after the Civil War, race riots in the early 1900s, the Dust Bowl, and the Oklahoma City bombings.
Often Associated With: Oklahoma!, Indians, oil and gas drilling, race riots, tornadoes, cowboys, cattle ranching, Tulsa, The Grapes of Wrath, Southern hospitality, Dust Bowl, multiculturalism, bison, Sooners, Okies, rednecks, country music, lady golf, trailer parks, Wichita Mountains, Sallisaw, Norman, Ouachita Mountains, Medicine Park, Oklahoma City bombings, Ozarks, Tahlequah, Waurika Lake
Oregon’s Mt. Hood is a 11,249 ft tall stratavolcano on the Cascade Range’s Volcanic Arc. It’s Oregon’s highest mountain as well as one of the loftiest peaks in the US. It is home to 12 named glaciers and snowfields and is considered the Oregon volcano most likely to erupt but not explosively.
Nickname: “Beaver State”
Largest City: Portland
Entered Union: February 14, 1859
Bird: Western Meadowlark
Flower: Oregon Grape
Tree: Douglas Fir
Celebrities: Ty Burrell, Beverly Cleary, Matt Groening, Chief Joseph, Linus Pauling, Jack Reed, Jean M. Auel, Chris Botti, Ann Curry, Sam Elliot, Tony Harding, Herbert Hoover, Terry Irwin, John Krakauer, Courtney Love, Chuck Palahnuik, River Phoenix, Johnnie Ray, David Ogden Stiers
Sports Teams: Portland Trail Blazers (NBA), Oregon Ducks, and Portland State Vikings (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Inhabited by more than 100 Indian tribes including the Nez Perce, Coquille, Bannock, Chasta, Kalapuya, Molala, Takelma, Tillamook, Umpqua, Yakima, Chinook, Cayuse, and Modoc. May have been inhabited as early as 15,000 years.
Best Known Moments: Oregon Territory, Lewis and Clark Expedition, destination for Oregon Trail, and site of many dam projects during the Great Depression.
Often Associated With: Oregon Trail, hippies, hipsters, tree huggers, Portland, Portlandia, New Agers, wilderness, Cascade Range, dysentery, Bonneville Dam, hydroelectric power, forests, Columbia River, Mount Hood, legal euthanasia laws, high tech industry, diverse wildlife, fishing, corporate headquarters, Nike, Intel, no sales tax, revenue limits, pioneers on covered wagons, hiking, Crater Lake, Oregon Caves, Astoria Column, Timberline Lodge, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon Dunes, Ft. Clatstop, International Rose Test Garden, Ashland, Multnomah Falls, volcanoes, mountains, snow, skiing, Newport, Kalimiopsis Wilderness, snow capped peaks, Eugene, totem poles
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was a city of industry that has managed to successfully turn itself around after the 1980s as a leading city of the 21st century. Its high culture, beautiful skylines, business friendly environment, technological innovation, and decent standard of living, Pittsburgh is now a top world destination and more of a leading contender than it ever could be in the 19th century.
Nickname: “Keystone State”
Largest City: Philadelphia
Entered Union: December 12, 1787
Bird: Ruffed Grouse
Flower: Mountain Laurel
Celebrities: Benjamin Franklin, James Buchanan, Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, H. J. Heinz, Fred Rogers and much of the cast of Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, Arnold Palmer, Dan Marino, Zachary Quinto, Marian Anderson, Kobe Bryant, Bill Cosby, Will Smith, Wilt Chamberlain, Rachel Carson, Perry Como, Noam Chomsky, Joe Biden, Tina Fey, Stephen Foster, Robert Fulton, Martha Graham, Gene Kelly, Grace Kelly, William Powell, Margaret Mead, Joe Namath, both Ken Griffeys, Russ Grimm, Joe Montana, Andrew W. Mellon, Robert E. Peary, Alecia Moore (a. k. a. Pink), Sharon Stone, Tom Ridge, Robert Morris, James Wilson, Gouveneur Morris, Jimmy Stewart, Thaddeus Stevens, Jim Thorpe, Benjamin West, Honus Wagner, John Updike, George Benson, Shirley Jones, Kevin Bacon, the original Barrymores, Mario Andretti, Julie Benz, Peter Boyle, Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Bronson, Jeff Goldblum, Bradley Cooper, Dolores Costello, Broderick Crawford, Mario Lemieux, Barbara Feldon, W.C. Fields, Larry Fine, Richard Gere, Scott Glenn, Jamie Kennedy, Jack Klugman, Jeannette MacDonald, Frances McDormand, Hugh Marlowe, Adolphe Menjou, James A. Michener, Dennis Miller, Tom Mix, Jack Palance, Jon Polito, George Romero, Bob Saget, David O. Selznick, M. Night Shyamalan, Mary Cassatt, George Catlin, Thomas Eakins, Andy Warhol, Andrew Wyeth, Guion S. Bluford, Joe Amato, Bill Cowher, Ernie Davis, Floyd Landis, Stan Musial, Jerry Sandusky, Johnny Unitas, Louisa May Alcott, Oscar Hammerstein II, David McCullough, Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, Daniel Boone, Ida Tarbell, Wallace Stevens, John Edgar Wideman, Dr. Jonas Salk, the Sundance Kid, Thomas Midgley Jr., Milton S. Hershey, Lee Iacocca, Charles M. Schwab, Jeffrey Skilling, Sidney Lumet, Christina Aguilera, Frankie Avalon, Wiz Khalifa, Boyz II Men, Solomon Burke, John Dickinson, Chubby Checker, John Coltrane, Jim Croce, Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Hall & Oates, Joan Jett, Henry Mancini, the Roots, Robert Bork, Bob Casey Jr., Rick Santorum, Arlen Specter, Alexander Haig, Orrin Hatch, Ron Paul, Benjamin Netanyahu, A. Mitchell Palmer, Robert Reich, Jim Cramer, Billy Mays, F. Murray Abraham, the Warner Brothers, Michael Chabon, Nellie Bly, Mark Cuban, Joe Paterno, Randy Pausch, Herb Morrison, George C. Marshall, Dick Clark, Blythe Danner, Benjamin Guggenheim, George B. McClellan, George Meade, Ed Bradley, Patti LaBelle, Teddy Pendergrass, Edwin Drake, Joseph D. Pistone (a. k. a. Donnie Brasco)
Sports Teams: Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles (NFL), Pittsburg Pirates and Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers (NHL), Philadelphia 76ers (NBA), Pittsburgh Panthers, Penn State Nittany Lions, Temple Owls, Villanova Wildcats, and La Salle Explorers (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Lenni Lenape, Shawnee, Susquehannock, Erie, and Seneca. Probably wiped out by war and smallpox.
Best Known Moments: Its founding by William Penn, French and Indian War would start at Fort Necessity and would later see Bushy Run, Braddock’s defeat as well as the capture of Fort Duquesne, one of the original 13 Colonies, Philadelphia was site of the Declaration of Independence signing and the Constitutional Convention, would see several incidents during the American Revolution like Washington crossing the Delaware, Battles of Brandywine and Germantown, and Valley Forge, industrialization, saw the Battle of Gettysburg during Civil War, Gettysburg Address, the Homestead Strike, the Johnstown Flood, Three Mile Island, Flight 93, and “Kids for Cash.”
Often Associated With: Pittsburgh, Philly, Philly cheesesteak, drinking, swearing, die hard sports fans, steel, Rustbelt, Pitt, Penn State, Delaware River, Ohio River, Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, “yinz,” Appalachian Mountains, rednecks, Valley Forge, Hershey chocolate, Heinz 57 Varieties, Steeler fans, Fallingwater, Pocono Mountains, Flight 93, Gettysburg, Amish Country, Johnstown Flood, coal mining, Susquehanna River, “Kids for Cash,” Benjamin Franklin, Andrew Carnegie, Rolling Rock, pierogies, kielbasa, Poles, Italians, manufacturing, unions, glass, KDKA, The Office, Three Mile Island, horrendous road conditions, unpredictable winters, Groundhog Day, Quakers, Methodists, mushrooms, swing state politics, deer hunting, white tail deer, wild turkey, black bears, a lot of amusement parks, tunnels, motorcross, pretzels, snack foods, Sauerkraut, Andy Warhol, Pittsburghese, smog, idyllic farm country, Punxsutawney Phil, Groundhog Day, predicting 6 week weather conditions using rodents, Lake Erie, ketchup, Pine Creek Gorge, “Pennsylvania Polka,” polka music, Gettysburg, Scranton, Allentown, Erie, Wilkes-Barre, Bethlehem, Carlisle, Johnstown, King of Prussia, Snyder’s of Berlin, Rocky, Utz, Snyder’s of Hanover
39. Rhode Island
Rhode Island is a popular New England tourist destination because of its many ocean front beaches and harbors many rich people can sail their yachts in. Of course, this was in the Gilded Age but still, it makes money from vacationing New Englanders nevertheless.
Nickname: “Little Rhody,” “Ocean State”
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: May 29, 1790
Bird: Rhode Island Red Chicken
Tree: Red Maple
Celebrities: Nathanael Greene, George M. Cohan, Gilbert Stuart, Nelson Eddy, Ambrose Burnside, Cormac McCarthy, John McLaughlin, Matthew C. and Oliver Hazard Perry, Meredith Vieira, H. P. Lovecraft, David Macaulay, Marilyn Chambers, Viola Davis, the Farrelly Brothers, Richard Jenkins, Van Johnson, Seth McFarlane, Ted Knight, George Macready, Louis B. Mayer, James Woods, A. O. Scott, Sullivan Ballou, Roger Williams, Anne Hutchinson
Sports Teams: Brown Bears, Providence College Friars, Bryant Bulldogs, and Rhode Island Rams (NCAA Div. I).
Indian Tribes: Narragansett, Niantic, Nipmuc, Wampanoag, and Pequot. Probably died from war and small pox.
Best Known Moments: Founded by Roger Williams in the 1600s, King Philip’s War, was heavily involved with the slave trade as well as known for religious toleration, one of the original 13 Colonies, American Revolution, industrialization, and not much else.
Often Associated With: New England, beaches, whaling, small landmass, geographic confusion, boats, lighthouses, not a lot of crime, Brown, rich people, intellectuals, seafood, shellfish, clam chowder, Newport, Pawtucket, Providence, Touro Synagogue, mansions, Narragansett, harbor, Block Island Mansions, Cliff Walk, Slater Mill, Pawtucket, Sanderstown, ferry boat, Block Island Sound
40. South Carolina
South Carolina’s Magnolia Plantation and Gardens is one of the oldest plantations in the South and is located near Charleston. Though originally a rice plantation, it’s now a tourist attraction as well as a great wedding destination for the bride who really wants her big day to appear something like she’d seen in a Southern Gothic novel minus the weird stuff happening.
Nickname: “Palmetto State”
Largest City: Same
Entered Union: May 23, 1788
Bird: Carolina Wren
Flower: Yellow Jessamine
Celebrities: Stephen Colbert, Strom Thurmond, John C. Calhoun, Marian Wright Edleman, Jesse Jackson, “Shoeless Joe” Jackson, Andie McDowell, Francis Marion, Preston Brooks, Mary MacLeod Bethune, James Brown, Joe Frazier, Althea Gibson, Dizzy Gillespie, Thomas Hayward Jr., Eartha Kitt, James “Pete” Longstreet, Thomas Lynch Jr., Melvin Purvis, Joel Roberts Poinsett, Edward Rutledge, Mickey Spillane, William C. Westmoreland, John B. Watson, Aziz Ansari, Chubby Checker, Pat Conroy, Viola Davis, Andy Dick, Stanley Donen, John Edwards, Shepard Fairey, Mary-Louise Parker, Chris Rock
Sports Teams: South Carolina Gamecocks, South Carolina State Bulldogs, and Clemson Tigers (NCAA Div. I)
Indian Tribes: Inhabited by 30 tribes including the Cherokee, Catawba, and Muskogean. Kicked out in the 1830s with Indian Removal.
Best Known Moments: One of the Original 13 Colonies, saw a lot of action during the American Revolution with Cowpens and Kings Mountain, started the Nullification Crisis, Trail of Tears, first state to secede from the Union and saw the beginning of the Civil War at Ft. Sumter as well as Sherman’s March to the Sea,
Often Associated With: Charleston, slavery, racism, South Carolina primary, governors “hiking the Appalachian Trail,” governors basically going missing to carry on an extramarital affair on Father’s Day, rednecks, messed up politics, indigo, cotton, rice, racist senators having illegitimate black love children, Myrtle Beach, plantations, southern belles, Southern Gothic Literature, palmettos, salt marshes, swamp, Blue Ridge Mountains, hurricanes, Confederate flag displays, Confederate nostalgia, conservatism, pro-slavery congressmen caning anti-slavery senators from Massachusetts, Bob Jones University, Kings Mountain, Cowpens, videotaped Breathalyzer tests, strict laws on alcohol, Fort Sumter, poverty, poinsettias, Baptists, Bible Belt, brightly painted houses, plantations, Magnolia Plantation, Cypress Gardens, Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens, Riverbanks Zoo, Moncks Corner, swamp, Brookgreen Gardens, Hilton Head Island, Drayton Hall, Murrells Inlet, beaches, cypress, Middleton Place, Waterfront Park