The United States of America a.k.a. “U.S.A.”, “U.S.”, “America”
Nicknamed “America”, “USA”, or the “U.S.”, The “United States of America” is the association of States located within the landmass called the Americas consisting of North America and South America. It was the German cartographer Martin Waldseem’ller who first labelled “America” its name on a world map he made claiming the lands of the Western Hemisphere as such in 1507, named after the Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci. The first use of the name “United States of America” comes from a letter dated January 2, 1776 between Stephen Moylan (George Washington’s aide) and Lt. Col Joseph Reed to carry the “#8220;full and ample powers of the United States of America” to Spain to assist in the revolutionary war effort. The first publication of the phrase was in an anonymous essay in the Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia on April 6, 1776. Thomas Jefferson then wrote in 1776 “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” on the headline of his original rough draft of the Declaration of Independence, but it was changed in the July 4th version to read “The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America”, but finalized in 1777 in the Articles of Confederation announcing “The Stile of this Confederacy shall be ‘The United States of America”. The phrase is downplayed to read most often as simply “United States”, “U.S.”, “USA”, and “America”. It has also been nicknamed “Columbia” after Christopher Columbus, one of the falsely first attributed discoverers. It means a collection of independent states. A citizen is usually referred to as an “American”.
Its Motto is “In God We Trust” because of the original settling of Westerners and Euro-Americans escaping European stifled Religious views and is known as the “shopping market of Religion” in the World. The Country’s Anthem is “The Star Spangled Banner”. The Capital of the USA is “Washington D.C.” Its Largest and most populated City is New York City. The U.S. possesses no official language, although “English” is the national language and most commonly used, followed by Spanish. English is the official language of at least 28; English and Hawaiian are the official languages of Hawaii, while French is a de fact o language in Maine and Louisiana; and New Mexico grants Spanish a special status. Politically it is considered a Corporate Democracy officially defined as a Federal Presidential Constitutional Republic.
Originally primarily composed of colonies from France, England, and Spain; England was predominant in colonization. The United States of America was created in opposition to rule from Great Britain and declared independence on July 4, 1776. It was deemed a confederation on March 1, 1781, signed the Treaty of Paris on September 3, 1783, formed its Constitution on June 21, 1788 and admitted its last polity on March 24, 1976. The U.S. consists of approximately 3,805,927 square miles with a population estimated at over 321,521,737 inhabitants (2015 census). The U.S. is the world’s fourth largest in area and third most populated country. It is considered one of the world’s most diverse and multicultural nations.
Economy and Industry: One of the world’s most developed countries with the world’s largest economy by nominal and real GDP, the United States holds an abundance of natural resources and high worker productivity in the world. Its economy is considered post-industrial and continues to be one of the world’s largest manufacturers. 34% of the world’s global military spending is achieved by the U.S. as well as 23% of the world’s GDP.
Geography/Location: The United States is a federal republic composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major territories and various other possessions. The 48 contiguous states and Washington D.C. are located geographically in Central North America, nestled between Mexico and Canada. Alaska is located in the northwestern part of North America above Canada and the state of Hawaii is an archipelago set of islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The U.S. Territories are scattered around the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.
The region that is now referred to as “North America”, more specifically “Canada” and the “United States” was once various territories of indigenous North Americans that western society refers to as “Ameri-Indians”, “Native Americans”, and “Indians”. Archaeologists have rationally deduced with archaeological evidence that the Paleo-Indians inhabiting this region originally migrated from Eurasia via what is known as the land bridge in the Arctic Sea and well as other theories of cross-Pacific crossings. This occurred approximately 15,000 years ago based on lithic points recovered and dating methodologies reaching these dates.
The very first inhabitants of the Americas was believed to have been peopling coming in over the land bridge located in the Bering Straight between today’s Russia and the state of Alaska. They were believed to have crossed that bridge over 15,000 years ago. These nomadic peoples hunted and followed game down into the lands that are now present-day “United States”, eventually settling, developing agriculture, grand architecture, and eventually state-level societies. One of the first European explorers believed to have first set foot in the Americas was Christopher Columbus from Spain in 1492. Earlier evidence however show that Viking explorers may have arrived earlier. Other European explorers came in through what is now known as “Florida” migrating westward. The French attempted to settle the east coast and along the Mississippi River. The English took to the eastern coast with their 1607 settlement known as the Virginia Colony with Jamestown and Plymouth as main locations. When European explorers came to the Americas, they brought with them disease, war, and other conditions that decimated the indigenous populations, especially with measles and smallpox. Traditional religions were attacked and many were converted over to Christianity. As the pioneers and settlers from Europe came over, they experienced food shortages, new diseases, and attacks from the Native peoples. They eventually created trade networks with the indigenous and themselves throughout the Americas – trading food, furs, pelts, guns, tools, ammunition, horses, and cattle. The Europeans were taught local agriculture and the Europeans taught the indigenous their faith and agricultural techniques, languages, and culture. Europeans migrated over and began colonization of the area in the 16th century C.E. taking most of the lands from the indigenous, as what happens worldwide with colonization. The “United States” emerged from 13 original colonies that were established here from Britain. Britain however was not the only European country establishing camp in the “Americas”, France, Germany, Spain, and some other smaller countries. Disputes between Britain and the colonies led to the “American Revolution” as a war leading to the adoption of the “Declaration of Independence” on July 4, 1776 whereas the Colonies deemed themselves an Independent Nation. Europe disliked this idea which led to numerous conflicts, but due to great distances to supply troops and weapons, the Brits lost. The war was ended in 1783 when Independence as the “United States” was finally recognized by Great Britain representing the first successful war of independence against a European Colonial Empire. The United States adopted its constitution on September 17, 1787 ratified by the states in 1788. The first ten amendments “The Bill of Rights” were ratified in 1791 guaranteeing many fundamental civil rights and freedoms unknown to most Europeans at the time making it a very attractive country to relocate to. America established the “Manifest Destiny”, a vigorous expansion across North America taking place across the 19th century displacing Native American peoples, acquiring new territories and eventually new States until 1848 when it had successfully spanned the continent. The next major battle was the American Civil War that took place to end slavery, dividing the North from the South, and forcing brother to kill brother, neighbor to destroy neighbor. The North won abolishing slavery. By the end of the 19th century America started taking its expansion into the Pacific Ocean, establishing territories, and another state, Hawaii. The Spanish-American War and World War I established America as one of the World’s super-powers and after its use of nuclear weapons during World War II making it a global super-power feared by many countries as it was the only country to have used nuclear weapons during warfare and its establishment as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. America also had influence and a role to play in the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 making America the world’s sole super power.
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This page was last updated on 3/24/17
- Roadways and Highways:
- Interstate 84
- Baurley, Thomas 2015 Alternative America: Travel Guide to the U.S.A. Technogypsie Publications, Riverside, California.
- McGowan, Leaf 2015 Magical America. Technogypsie Publications, Riverside, California.
- Wikipedia 2015 “United States of America” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Website https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States referenced 8/16/15.