The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country mostly located in central North America, between Canada and Mexico. It consists of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles (9.8 million km2), it is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area. The U.S. is the third most populous country in the world. The most populous city is New York City. The capital is Washington, D.C.
America is a melting pot. The 2019 estimated population is over 328 million. It is home to nearly 45 million immigrants, more than any other country in the world. America has never declared a national language. English is the most commonly spoken language, followed by Spanish, and there are more than 350 languages spoken in the U.S.
The U.S. is one of the most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations. America, the land of the free, is where people have the right to express themselves freely in print and speech. In the U.S. Islam is the third largest religion after Christianity and Judaism. Christmas was illegal in the U.S. until 1836, it was considered an ancient pagan holiday.
The U.S. is the only country that has all of earth's five climate zones: tropical, dry, temperate, continental, and polar. Nearly one-third of all land in the U.S. (approximately 650 million acres) is federally owned. The U.S. ranks among the top ten countries in the world for the number of mammal, reptile, fish, and vascular plant species.
The Empire State Building has its own zip code. It is 10188. New York City's Landmarks Preservation Commission declared the building a landmark on May 18, 1981. In 1982 The Empire State Building was listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places.
The U.S. has 42,000 zip codes.
The Library of Congress, in Washington D.C. has 838 miles of bookshelves. The bookshelves are long enough to stretch from Houston to Chicago. The Library of Congress has more than 38 million books and other printed materials, 3.6 million recordings, 14 million photographs, 5.5 million maps, 8.1 million pieces of sheet music, 70 million manuscripts, 5,711 incunabula, and 122,810,430 items in the non-classified (special) collections. That is more than 167 million items.
Montana, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Wyoming have more cattle than people.
Alaska is 429 times larger than Rhode Island.
The town of Whittier, Alaska, an hour southeast of Anchorage, has approximately 220 people. They live in one building under one roof.
Approximately 90 percent of Americans use the Internet, compared with approximately 54 percent of the global population.
The U.S. has more than 3.1 million square miles of forestland, the fourth most after Canada, Brazil, and Russia.
You can obtain a unicorn-hunting license from Michigan's Lake Superior State University. The late W.T. Rabe, known for his clever public relations stunts when he was a Detroit-area publicist, created the Unicorn Hunters in 1971.
Bourbon is the only U.S. native spirit, declared by Congress in 1964, in an effort to thwart competitors abroad from re-creating it. Kentucky, the birthplace of bourbon, is home to over two million more bourbon barrels than people and supplies more than 95 percent of the world's bourbon.
More than half of the U.S. states (26) have names with Native American origins.
According to the National Association of Wheat Growers, an acre of Kansas wheat produces enough bread to feed nearly 9,000 people for one day. That is enough wheat in one year to feed everyone in the world for two weeks.
The U.S. produces more corn than any country in the world.
July 20, 1969: Approximately 600 million people around the world watched when Apollo 11 traveled approximately 240,000 miles to become the first manned spacecraft to land on the moon. Neil Armstrong (commander), Buzz Aldrin (lunar module pilot) and Michael Collins (command module pilot) were the crew. Armstrong and Aldrin spent 21 hours and 36 minutes on the moon's surface.
"That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Neil Armstrong
After returning from space, Armstrong said that there was a lost word in his famous one-liner. He insisted that he had said, "That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind."
Researchers from Michigan State University (MSU) and Ohio State University did an audio study to decipher Armstrong's statement. It seems that he probably did say the word "a" as he claimed. Armstrong was raised in central Ohio, where there is often a blending between words such as "for" and "a", the researchers explained. His blending of the two words, coupled with the poor sound quality of the transmission, made it difficult for people to hear the "a" word.
Research team member Laura Dilley, a MSU assistant professor of communicative sciences and disorders said, "We've bolstered Neil Armstrong's side of the story. We feel we've partially vindicated him. But we'll most likely never know for sure exactly what he said based on the acoustic information."
The U.S. completed six crewed missions that landed a total of 12 astronauts on the moon from 1969 to 1972.
Katharine Lee Bates was correct in 1893 when she wrote that America is beautiful from sea to shining sea. America is still a stunningly beautiful country, from sea to shining sea. Many American people are kind, loving, positive, optimistic, generous, and charitable. Sadly, in spite of the legitimate good about America and about American people, some of our most reprehensible history and most deplorable present day truth is associated with how, in America, people have been enslaved, imprisoned, abused, and murdered, most particularly American Indians, African Americans, Hispanics, and Asians.
Pennies are expensive: The U.S. government spends 1.8 cents to mint a one-cent coin. Nickels are worth half as much as dimes, but they cost about twice as much to make.
Many Americans smile frequently and are friendly to strangers. Smiling and being excessively expressive toward strangers is not common in many other countries. Also, Americans tend to be loud compared to people from other countries.
The U.S. incarcerates more people than any other country.
The phrase “United States of America” was first published anonymously in the Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776.
Lasting from 1929 to 1939, The Great Depression was the worst economic downturn in the history of America.
Americans have won the most Olympic medals of all times. U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps is the most successful Olympian of all time. He has won 28 medals, including eight gold medals at 2008 Beijing Games.
The Everglades National Park in Florida is the only ecosystem in the world where alligators and crocodiles co-exist. Most of the Everglades cannot be reach by car or foot because it is so swampy.
Peachy: The peach became Georgia's official state fruit on April 7, 1995. Georgia grown peaches are recognized for their superior flavor, texture, appearance, and nutritious qualities. While Georgia may be the Peach State, peaches also reign as the official fruit of the Palmetto State of South Carolina that produces more peaches than Georgia. A whole lot of cities and towns in Georgia have streets with "peach" in their names. Atlanta, Georgia has more than 70 streets with "peach" in their names.
"Uncle Sam" was a New Yorker. His name was Samuel Wilson and he was a meat packer in Troy, New York. He fought in the American Revolution and later became the official meat inspector for the northern army in the War of 1812. He had a pleasant nature, which is why he was given the nickname "Uncle Sam". According to HuffPost, when he started providing and inspecting meat for the troops during the War of 1812, the soldiers from Troy, New York would joke that the initials "U.S." label on the barrels actually stood for Uncle Sam. This idea eventually expanded to all United States military items with "U.S." And that's how Uncle Sam came to be.
America is the only country that celebrates college sports and elevates their college players to elite status. College football coaches are some of the highest-paid public employees in more than half of all 50 states. The three highest-paid college football coaches together were paid almost $22 million in 2016.
New York is "home" to the Statue of Liberty. However, the Statue of Liberty is not located in New York. It is in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Over half of the U.S. population lives in nine states: California, New York, Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, Georgia, and North Carolina.
One of America's most popular pastimes is eating pizza.
Approximately 17 percent of U.S. youth have obesity, and nearly one in three children and adolescents are either overweight or have obesity. Over 70 million adults in the U.S. are obese (35 million men and 35 million women). 99 million are overweight (45 million women and 54 million men). On any given day, approximately 84.8 million adults in the U.S. consume fast food, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Many Americans are sugar addicts. In numerous countries even the sweetest desserts have much less sugar than American desserts.
Food and drink portion sizes in the U.S. are much larger than portion sizes in many other countries.
The U.S. tends to have enormous grocery stores with a huge variety of items. Most other countries do not have large grocery stores or so many item choices.
According to the USDA, more than 11 million hungry children in the U.S. live in "food insecure" homes.
The U.S. is one of three countries that have not officially switched to the metric system. Liberia and Burma are the other two.
The U.S. has been awarded more Nobel Prizes than any other country.
Oregon people speak fast. Marchex studied more than four million phone calls and discovered that people in Oregon spoke six words in the time it takes slowpoke people in other states to say five words. New Yorkers, Upper Midwest states, and Massachusetts have quick speech patterns too. The slowest talkers are in Alabama, Louisiana, and the Carolinas.
Approximately 43 million Americans identify as ancestrally German, more than any other nationality.
The U.S. has the highest rate of tornadoes in the world, on average, more than 1000 each year.
Three out of every four tornadoes in the world occur in the U.S.
The extensive U.S. coastline has had more hurricanes (close to 300) since 1851 than any other country, according to data from the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration.
There are over 100,000 earthquakes in California every year. Most are minor and cause no damage.
California has many droughts. One of the worst was from December 2011 until March 2017. It was the driest in California in documented history. 164 million trees died during this time.
The U.S. shares the world's longest land border with its neighbor to the north, Canada, at over 5,500 miles. The border is split between the northern edge of the lower 48 states, and the eastern border of Alaska.
Pennsylvania is misspelled on the Liberty Bell. The spelling was an accepted spelling when the bell was engraved, but it is now considered a misspelling. The strike note of the bell is E-flat, and the bell weighs 2,080 pounds.
There are more guns than people in the U.S. There are approximately 101 guns per every 100 people, according to some estimates.
More people live in New York City than in 40 other states.
A Canadian company owns the Mall of America, in Bloomington, Minnesota. They designed and named the mall too.
According to the USDA, foreign investors own at least 28.3 million acres of U.S. farmland, an area roughly the size of Ohio.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency's 2012 figures, Americans produce approximately 1.4 billion pounds of trash each day. Yes, each and every day. It is currently 2020 - that amount has surely increased since 2012. Americans are likely the most wasteful people on the entire planet.
Americans love dogs. There are an estimated 76 million dogs in America, more than double the number in Brazil, the country with the second most dogs.
COVID-19 Economic Crisis:
The United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research estimates that the COVID-19 economic pandemic could drive as many as 580 million people around the world into poverty, the first increase in global poverty since 1990. This would be in addition to the 734 million people around the world who already live on less than $1.90 a day.
As of 2018, 38.1 million Americans met the federal government's definition of poverty. More than 38 million Americans have filed unemployment claims during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that number will almost certainly increase. America is facing a severe recession.
Approximately 48 percent of Americans are considered to be low income and some of the 48 percent are living in poverty.
As of January 2019, according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, there were almost 568,000 homeless people in America, associated with every region of the country, family status, gender category, and racial-ethnic group. This figure does not represent the growing number that is now occurring because of COVID-19.
Many Americans believe future history books will record that in 2020 the U.S. federal government cataclysmically failed America, and the world, with its negligent and politicized response to COVID-19. Many Americans believe the COVID-19 pandemic will be documented as one of the most devastating catastrophes in American history.
COVID-19 Health Pandemic In America:
As of March 28, 2020 New York had the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases of any state in the U.S. Nearly 50 percent of known national cases were in the state of New York, with one-third of the known cases being in NYC. New York has succeeded in its battle against COVID-19. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo reported that New York reached its lowest number of deaths since the pandemic begin. But, on June 28, 2020, twenty-nine other U.S. states had an alarming increase of cases as businesses and facilities reopened, and restrictions were lifted.
Arizona, California, Florida, Oklahoma, and Texas were the states with the highest concern. Florida joined New York, New Jersey, Illinois, California, Texas, and Massachusetts in states reporting more than 100,000 cases. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, confirms the surge of new cases in Arizona, California, Florida, Oklahoma, and other states.
Since Memorial Day (05-25-20) many Americans relaxed social distancing and gathered together in close proximity. Many refused to wear masks and ignored safety guidelines. Those choices brought on a resurgence of COVID-19 across the country. Tragically, wearing masks is an extremely politicized issue in America with devastating results.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts that COVID-19 U.S. deaths may reach 150,000 by July 18, 2020. COVID-19 is not taking a summer break. It is wreaking havoc on America.
As of July 4, 2020 the U.S. still had inadequate COVID-19 testing and tracing.
As of July 4, 2020 America had less than five percent of the world's population, but 25 percent of all COVID-19 cases.
On July 4, 2020 COVID-19 cases had agressively spiked in 40 of our 50 U.S. states. Experts believe the Fourth of July holiday will cause a greater increase of new cases across the country.
As of July 4, 2020 America had 2,935,086 COVID-19 cases and 132,313 deaths, according to Worldometer. Worldometer was voted as one of the best free reference websites by the American Library Association (ALA), the oldest and largest library association in the world. Scroll down on their web-page to review Worldometer's updated COVID-19 statistics, per country. They update their statistics each day.