The United States of America is also called the United States, the U.S., the USA, America, and the States. It is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district. The country lies mostly between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, bordered by Canada to the north and Mexico to the south. The state of Alaska is in the northwest of the continent and shares a border with Canada to the east To the west, across the Bering Strait is Russia. The state of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific. The country also possesses several territories in the Pacific and Caribbean.
The United States was founded by thirteen British colonies located along the Atlantic seaboard. On July 4, 1776, they issued the Declaration of Independence, which proclaimed their right to self-determination and their establishment of a cooperative union. The rebellious states defeated the British Empire in the American Revolution, the first successful colonial war of independence. The current United States Constitution was adopted on September 17, 1787; its ratification the following year made the states part of a single republic with a strong central government. The Bill of Rights, comprising ten constitutional amendments guaranteeing many fundamental civil rights and freedoms, was ratified in 1791.
Disputes between the agrarian South and industrial North over the expansion of the institution of slavery and states’ rights provoked the Civil War of the 1860s. The North’s victory prevented a permanent split of the country and led to the end of legal slavery in the United States.
In addition to its 100 senators, the Senate community is comprised of officers and staff who work behind the scenes to help the Senate conduct its business and fulfill its legislative responsibilities.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) is an independent agency created by the U.S. Congress to maintain stability and public confidence in the nation’s financial system by insuring deposits, examining and supervising financial institutions for safety and soundness and consumer protection, and managing receivership.
DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, utility and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. Established in 1995 and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, DSIRE is an ongoing project of the N.C. Solar Center and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council.
CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U. S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same
Indigenous people descended from forebears who migrated from Asia have inhabited what is now the mainland United States for many thousands of years. This Native American population was greatly reduced by disease and warfare after European contact.
The twelve regional offices are located in the heart of Indian Country with the agencies located at the reservation level.
The Five Civilized Tribes were the five Native American nations which were considered civilized by Anglo-European settlers during the colonial and early federal period because they adopted many of the colonists’ customs and had generally good relations with their neighbors.
The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Okla., the capital of the Cherokee Nation.
Other places and informational links for the U.S.A.:
Busting a myth:
It is a common urban legend that the Texas flag is the only state flag that is allowed to fly at the same height as the U.S. flag. This claim is made on the basis that Texas was once an independent nation and therefore has this right inherently. Some claim that this right was negotiated when joining the United States.
The truth is that any state has the right to fly its state flag at the same height as the U.S. flag providing the flags are on separate poles (the U.S. flag should be on its right (the viewer’s left), however). If on the same pole, the U.S. flag is always above the state flag.
The nation’s leading safety advocate for more than 100 years, the National Safety Council is a nonprofit organization with the mission to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy.
Ready is a national public service advertising (PSA) campaign designed to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies including natural and man-made disasters. The goal of the campaign is to get the public involved and ultimately to increase the level of basic preparedness across the nation.
Nationwide and state by state directories for USA Web Sites. United States websites. Online information home page and state guides
Personal travel in the U.S.A. is dominated by automobiles, which operate on a network of roads. The Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways (commonly known as the Interstate Highway System, Interstate Freeway System, Interstate System, or simply ‘the Interstate’) is a network of freeways that forms a part of the National Highway System of the United States.
While ridership on Amtrak has increased, mass transit accounts for a small percent of travel.
The civil airline industry is entirely privately owned and has been largely deregulated since 1978. Most major airports are publicly owned.
Here are some other resources that might be helpful in your travels around the United States.
New Year's Eve is a major social holiday for many people in the United States. Many people hold parties at home or attend special celebrations, where alcohol, such as wine and champagne, may be consumed to celebrate the upcoming New Year. In many cities, large scale public events are held. These often attract thousands of people.
New Year's Day marks the end of New Year’s Eve celebrations in the United States and gives many Americans a chance to remember the previous year. The main concept of New Year’s Day is a new beginning. A fresh start with new possibilities and opportunities.
The Emancipation Proclamation was a presidential proclamation and executive order issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. In a single stroke, it changed the federal legal status of more than 3 million enslaved persons in the designated areas of the South from "slave" to "free". It had the practical effect that as soon as a slave escaped the control of the Confederate government, by running away or through advances of federal troops, the slave became legally free. Eventually it reached and liberated all of the designated slaves. It was issued as a war measure during the American Civil War, directed to all of the areas in rebellion and all segments of the executive branch (including the Army and Navy) of the United States.
The Proclamation was issued in two parts. The first part, issued on September 22, 1862, was a preliminary announcement outlining the intent of the second part, which officially went into effect 100 days later on January 1, 1863, during the second year of the Civil War. It was Abraham Lincoln's declaration that all slaves would be permanently freed in all areas of the Confederacy that had not already returned to federal control by January 1863. The ten affected states were individually named in the second part (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina). Not included were the Union slave states of Maryland, Delaware, Missouri and Kentucky. Also not named was the state of Tennessee, in which a Union-controlled military government had already been set up, based in the capital, Nashville. Specific exemptions were stated for areas also under Union control on January 1, 1863, namely 48 counties that would soon become West Virginia, seven other named counties of Virginia including Berkeley and Hampshire counties, which were soon added to West Virginia, New Orleans and 13 named parishes nearby.
Union-occupied areas of the Confederate states where the proclamation was put into immediate effect by local commanders included Winchester, Virginia, Corinth, Mississippi, the Sea Islands along the coasts of the Carolinas and Georgia, Key West, Florida, and Port Royal, South Carolina.
Epiphany, commonly known as Three Kings’ Day in the United States, is on January 6. It celebrates the three wise men’s visit to baby Jesus and also remembers his baptism, according to the Christian Bible’s events. The United States (US) Virgin Islands observe the day as a public holiday.
Many Orthodox Christians in the United States celebrate Christmas Day on or near January 7 in the Gregorian calendar. This date works to be December 25 in the Julian calendar, which pre-dates the Gregorian calendar. It is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, who is believed to be the son of God.
Martin Luther King was an important civil rights activist. He was a leader in the movement to end racial segregation in the United States. His most famous address was the "I Have A Dream" speech. He was an advocate of non-violent protest and became the youngest man to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He was assassinated in 1968.
In 1968, shortly after Martin Luther King died, a campaign was started for his birthday to become a holiday to honor him. After the first bill was introduced, trade unions lead the campaign for the federal holiday. It was endorsed in 1976. Following support from the musician Stevie Wonder with his single "Happy Birthday" and a petition with six million signatures, the bill became law in 1983. Martin Luther King Day was first observed in 1986, although it was not observed in all states until the year 2000. In 1990, the Wyoming legislature designated Martin Luther King Jr/Wyoming Equality Day as a legal holiday.
Groundhog Day falls on February 2 in the United States, coinciding with Candlemas. It is a part of popular culture among many Americans and it centers on the idea of the groundhog coming out of its home to “predict” the weather.
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