United States of America
|Motto: "In God We Trust"|
Other traditional mottos:
|March 1, 1781 (1781-03-01)|
|September 3, 1783 (1783-09-03)|
|June 21, 1788 (1788-06-21)|
|May 5, 1992 (1992-05-05)|
• 2022 estimate
• 2020 census
|87/sq mi (33.6/km2) (185th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2023 estimate|
|$26.855 trillion (2nd)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2023 estimate|
|$26.855 trillion (1st)|
• Per capita
|Gini (2020)|| 39.4[e]|
|HDI (2021)|| 0.921|
very high · 21st
|Currency||U.S. dollar ($) (USD)|
|Time zone||UTC−4 to −12, +10, +11|
• Summer (DST)
|UTC−4 to −10[f]|
|ISO 3166 code||US|
The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country primarily located in
Indigenous peoples have inhabited the Americas for thousands of years. Beginning in 1607, British colonization led to the establishment of the Thirteen Colonies in what is now the Eastern United States. They clashed with the British Crown over taxation and political representation which led to the American Revolution and the ensuing Revolutionary War. The United States declared independence on July 4, 1776, becoming the first nation-state founded on Enlightenment principles of unalienable natural rights, consent of the governed, and liberal democracy. The country began expanding across North America, spanning the continent by 1848. Sectional division over slavery led to the secession of the Confederate States of America, which fought the remaining states of the Union during the American Civil War (1861–1865). With the Union's victory and preservation, slavery was abolished nationally. By 1890, the United States had established itself as a great power, becoming the world's largest economy. After Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, the U.S. entered World War II on the side of the Allies. The aftermath of the war left the United States and the Soviet Union as the world's two superpowers and led to the Cold War. During the Cold War, both countries engaged in a struggle for ideological dominance but avoided direct military conflict. They also competed in the Space Race, which culminated in the 1969 landing of Apollo 11, making the U.S. the only nation to land humans on the Moon. With the Soviet Union's collapse and the subsequent end of the Cold War in 1991, the United States emerged as the world's sole superpower.
The United States is a developed country that has the highest disposable income per capita in the world. Its economy accounts for approximately a quarter of global GDP and is the world's largest by GDP at market exchange rates. It is the world's largest importer and second-largest exporter, and possesses the largest amount of wealth of any country. The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, NATO, World Health Organization, and is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. It wields considerable global influence as one of the world's foremost political, cultural, economic, military, and scientific powers.
The first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" dates back to a letter from January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, a Continental Army aide to General George Washington, to Joseph Reed, Washington's aide-de-camp. Moylan expressed his desire to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the Revolutionary War effort. The first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, on April 6, 1776.
By June 1776, the name "United States of America" appeared in drafts of the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, authored by John Dickinson, a Founding Father from the Province of Pennsylvania, and in the Declaration of Independence, written primarily by Thomas Jefferson and adopted by the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia, on July 4, 1776.
Beginnings (before 1630)
Over time, indigenous cultures in North America grew increasingly sophisticated, and some, such as the pre-Columbian
The Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano, sent by France to the New World in 1525, encountered Native American inhabitants in the present-day New York Bay region. The Spanish Empire set up their first settlements in Florida and New Mexico, including in Saint Augustine (1565), which is often considered the nation's oldest city, and Santa Fe (1598). The French established their own settlements along the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico, including in New Orleans (1718) and Mobile (1702).
Colonization, settlement, and communities (1630–1763)
British colonization of the east coast of North America began with the Virginia Colony in 1607, where Pilgrims settled in Jamestown and later established Plymouth Colony in 1620. Many English settlers were dissenting Christians who fled England seeking religious freedom.
The continent's first elected legislative assembly, the
During the 17th century European colonization many European settlers experienced food shortages, disease, and conflicts with Native Americans, particularly in King Philip's War. In addition to fighting European settlers, Native Americans also often fought neighboring tribes. But in many cases, the natives and settlers came to develop a mutual dependency. Settlers traded for food and animal pelts, and Native Americans traded for guns, tools, and other European goods. Native Americans taught many settlers to cultivate corn, beans, and other foodstuffs. European missionaries and others felt it was important to "civilize" the Native Americans and urged them to adopt European agricultural practices and lifestyles. With the increased European colonization of North America, however, Native Americans were often displaced or killed during conflicts.
European settlers also began
In what was then considered British America, the Thirteen Colonies[l] were administered as overseas dependencies by the British. All colonies had local governments with elections open to white male property owners except Jews and, in some areas, Catholics. With very high birth rates, low death rates, and steadily growing settlements, the colonial population grew rapidly, eclipsing Native American populations. The Christian revivalist movement of the 1730s and 1740s, known as the Great Awakening, fueled colonial interest in both religion and religious liberty. Excluding the Native American population, the Thirteen Colonies had a population of over 2.1 million in 1770, representing a population that was then roughly a third the size of Great Britain. By the 1770s, despite continuing new immigrant arrivals from Britain and other European regions, the natural increase of the population was such that only a small minority of Americans had been born overseas. The colonies' distance from Britain had allowed for the development of self-governance in the colonies, but it encountered periodic efforts by British monarchs to reassert royal authority.
Revolution and the new nation (1763–1789)
After the British victory in the
On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress with alterations unanimously adopted and issued the Declaration of Independence, which famously stated: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that
In 1781, the
As it became increasingly apparent that the Confederation was insufficient to govern the new country,
During the British Colonial era slavery, a longstanding institution in world history, was legal in the American colonies, and "challenges to its moral legitimacy were rare". However, during the Revolution many in the new nation began to question the practice. Regional divisions over slavery grew in the ensuing decades. In the North, several prominent Founding Fathers such as John Adams, Roger Sherman, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and Benjamin Franklin advocated for the abolition of slavery, and by the 1810s every state in the region had, those emancipations being the first in the Atlantic World.
In the late 18th century, American settlers began to expand further westward, some of them with a sense of manifest destiny. The Louisiana Purchase (1803) nearly doubled the acreage of the United States, effectively ending French colonial interest in North America and their opposition to American westward expansion. Spain ceded Florida and other Gulf Coast territory in 1819, The Missouri Compromise (1820) admitted Missouri as a slave state and Maine as a free state and declared a policy of prohibiting slavery in the remaining Louisiana Purchase lands north of the 36°30′ parallel. The outcome de facto sectionalized the country into two factions: free states, which forbade slavery; and slave states, which protected the institution; it was controversial, widely seen as dividing the country along sectarian lines. Although the national government outlawed American participation in the Atlantic slave trade in 1807, after 1820 cultivation of the highly profitable cotton crop exploded in the Deep South, and along with it the use of slave labor. The invention of the cotton gin lowering the cost of cotton production and exponentially increasing profits spurred the entrenchment of slavery on sourhtern agricultural plantations, with regional elites and intellectuals increasingly viewing the institution as a positive good instead of a necessary evil. The Second Great Awakening, especially in the period 1800–1840, converted millions to evangelical Protestantism. In the North, it energized multiple social reform movements, including abolitionism; in the South, Methodists and Baptists proselytized among slave populations.
As Americans expanded further into land inhabited by Native Americans, the federal government often applied policies of Indian removal or assimilation. The Trail of Tears in the 1830s exemplified the Indian removal policy that forcibly resettled Indians. The displacement prompted a long series of American Indian Wars west of the Mississippi River and eventually conflict with Mexico. Most of these conflicts ended with the cession of Native American territory and their confinement to Indian reservations.
The Republic of Texas was annexed in 1845 during a period of expansionism, and the 1846 Oregon Treaty with Britain led to U.S. control of the present-day American Northwest. Victory in the Mexican–American War resulted in the 1848 Mexican Cession of California and much of the present-day American Southwest, with the U.S. now spanning the continent. The California Gold Rush of 1848–1849 spurred migration to the Pacific coast, which led to the California genocide and the creation of additional western states.
Civil War and Reconstruction (1860–1876)
Reconstruction began in earnest following the defeat of the Confederates. While President Lincoln attempted to foster reconciliation between the Union and former Confederacy, his assassination on April 14, 1865 drove a wedge between North and South again. "Radical Republicans" in the federal government made it their goal to oversee the rebuilding of the South and to ensure the rights of African Americans, and the so-called Reconstruction Amendments to the Constitution guaranteed the abolishment of slavery, full citizenship to Americans of African descent, and suffrage for adult Black men. They persisted until the Compromise of 1877.
To encourage additional westward settlement the
Development of the modern United States (1876–1914)
National infrastructure, including
From 1865 through 1918 an unprecedented and diverse stream of immigrants arrived in the United States, 27.5 million in total. In all, 24.4 million (89%) came from Europe, including from
World Wars period (1914–1945)
The United States remained neutral from the outbreak of World War I in 1914 until 1917 when it joined the war as an "associated power" alongside the Allies of World War I, helping to turn the tide against the Central Powers. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson took a leading diplomatic role at the Paris Peace Conference and advocated strongly for the U.S. to join the League of Nations, however the U.S. Senate refused to support this and did not ratify the Treaty of Versailles under which the League of Nations was established.
In 1920, a constitutional amendment granted nationwide women's suffrage. During the 1920s and 1930s, radio for mass communication and ultimately the invention of early television transformed communications in the United States. The prosperity of the Roaring Twenties ended with the Wall Street Crash of 1929 and the onset of the Great Depression. After his election as president in 1932, Franklin D. Roosevelt, between 1933 and 1939, introduced his New Deal social and economic policies, which included public works projects, financial reforms, and regulations which represented a shift to a new current of modern liberalism in the United States". The Dust Bowl of the mid-1930s impoverished many farming communities and spurred a new wave of western migration.
The United States played a leading role in the
Post-War Era (1945–1999)
After World War II, the United States launched the
The civil rights movement emerged, with Martin Luther King Jr. becoming a prominent leader in the early 1960s. President Lyndon B. Johnson initiated the "Great Society", introducing sweeping legislation and policies to address poverty and racial inequalities. The counterculture movement in the U.S. brought significant social changes, including the liberalization of attitudes towards what substances are acceptable for recreational drug use, sexuality and the beginning of the modern gay rights movement as well as open defiance of the military draft and opposition to intervention in Vietnam.
The United States supported
Contemporary United States (2000–present)
In the first decades of the 21st century, the U.S. faced challenges from
The United States has continued to confront sociopolitical debates on various issues such as
The 48 contiguous states and the District of Columbia occupy a combined area of 3,119,885 square miles (8,080,470 km2). Of this area, 2,959,064 square miles (7,663,940 km2) is contiguous land, composing 83.65% of total U.S. land area. About 15% is occupied by Alaska, a state in northwestern North America, with the remainder in Hawaii, a state and archipelago in the central Pacific, and the five populated but unincorporated insular territories of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Measured by only land area, the United States is third in size behind Russia and China, and just ahead of Canada. The United States is the world's third-largest nation by land and total area behind Russia and Canada.[c]
With its large size and geographic variety, the United States includes most climate types. To the east of the 100th meridian, the climate ranges from humid continental in the north to humid subtropical in the south.
The Great Plains west of the 100th meridian are semi-arid. Many mountainous areas of the American West have an alpine climate. The climate is arid in the Great Basin, desert in the Southwest, Mediterranean in coastal California, and oceanic in coastal Oregon and Washington and southern Alaska. Most of Alaska is subarctic or polar. Hawaii and the southern tip of Florida are tropical, as well as its territories in the Caribbean and the Pacific.
States bordering the Gulf of Mexico are prone to hurricanes, and most of the world's tornadoes occur in the country, mainly in Tornado Alley areas in the Midwest and South. Overall, the United States receives more high-impact extreme weather incidents than any other country in the world.
Extreme weather became more frequent in the U.S. in the 21st century, with three times the number of reported
Biodiversity and conservation
The U.S. is one of 17
There are 63 national parks, which are managed by the National Park Service, and hundreds of other federally managed parks, forests, and wilderness areas, managed by the National Park Service and other agencies. Altogether, about 28% of the country's land area is publicly owned and federally managed, primarily located in the western states. Most of this land is protected, though some is leased for oil and gas drilling, mining, logging, or cattle ranching, and less than one percent of it is used for military purposes.
As of 2020, the U.S. ranked 24th among 180 nations in the Environmental Performance Index. The country joined the Paris Agreement on climate change in 2016, and has many other environmental commitments. It withdrew from the Paris Agreement in 2020 but rejoined it in 2021.
Government and politics
The United States was founded on the principles of the American Enlightenment. It is a federal republic of 50 states, a federal district, five territories and several uninhabited island possessions. It is the world's oldest surviving federation, and, according to the World Economic Forum, the oldest democracy as well. It is a liberal representative democracy "in which majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by law."
- The U.S. President is the commander-in-chief of the military, can veto legislative bills before they become law (subject to congressional override), and appoints the members of the Cabinet (subject to Senate approval) and other officers, who administer and enforce federal laws and policies through their respective agencies. The President serves a four-year term and may be elected to the office no more than twice.
- The U.S. Supreme Court and lower federal courts, whose judges are appointed by the President with Senate approval, interpret laws and overturn those they find unconstitutional. The Supreme Court is led by the chief justice of the United States. It has nine members who serve for life. The members are appointed by the sitting president when a vacancy becomes available.
The U.S. Constitution serves as the country's supreme legal document, establishing the structure and responsibilities of the federal government and its relationship with the individual states. The Constitution has been amended 27 times.
In the American
The United States has an established structure of foreign relations, and it had the world's second-largest diplomatic corps in 2019. It is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, and home to the United Nations headquarters. The United States is also a member of the G7, G20, and OECD intergovernmental organizations. Almost all countries have embassies and many have consulates (official representatives) in the country. Likewise, nearly all nations host formal diplomatic missions with the United States, except Iran, North Korea, and Bhutan. Though Taiwan does not have formal diplomatic relations with the U.S., it maintains close, if unofficial, relations. The United States also regularly supplies Taiwan with military equipment to deter potential Chinese aggression.
The United States has a "
The President is the
Today, American forces can be rapidly deployed by the Air Force's large fleet of
Law enforcement and crime
There are about 18000 U.S. police agencies from local to federal level in the United States.
As of 2020[update], the United States has an intentional homicide rate of 7 per 100000 people. A cross-sectional analysis of the World Health Organization Mortality Database from 2010 showed that United States homicide rates "were 7.0 times higher than in other high-income countries, driven by a gun homicide rate that was 25.2 times higher."
As of January 2023, the United States has the sixth highest per-capita incarceration rate in the world, at 531 people per 100000; and the largest prison and jail population in the world at 1767200. In 2019, the total prison population for those sentenced to more than a year was 1430000, corresponding to a ratio of 419 per 100000 residents and the lowest since 1995. Some think tanks place that number higher, such as Prison Policy Initiative's estimate of 1.9 million. Various states have attempted to reduce their prison populations via government policies and grassroots initiatives.
According to the International Monetary Fund, the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) is $25.5 trillion, the largest of any country in the world, constituting over 25% of the gross world product at market exchange rates and over 15% of the gross world product at purchasing power parity (PPP). From 1983 to 2008, U.S. real compounded annual GDP growth was 3.3%, compared to a 2.3% weighted average for the rest of the Group of Seven. The country ranks first in the world by disposable income per capita, nominal GDP, second by GDP (PPP), seventh by nominal GDP per capita, and eighth by GDP (PPP) per capita. The U.S. has been the world's largest economy since at least 1900.
Many of the world's largest companies, such as Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, AT&T, Coca-Cola, Disney, General Motors, McDonald's, Meta, Microsoft, Nike, Pepsi, and Walmart, were founded and are headquartered in the United States. Of the world's 500 largest companies, 136 are headquartered in the U.S.
The United States is at or near the forefront of
While its economy has reached a
The United States has a smaller
Science, technology, and energy
The United States has been a leader in technological
As of 2021[update], the United States receives approximately 79.1% of its energy from fossil fuels.
The United States's
Personal transportation in the United States is
The American civil airline industry is entirely privately owned and has been largely deregulated since 1978, while most major airports are publicly owned. The three largest airlines in the world by passengers carried are U.S.-based; American Airlines is number one after its 2013 acquisition by US Airways. Of the world's 50 busiest passenger airports, 16 are in the United States, including the top five and the busiest, Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport. As of 2020[update], there are 19,919 airports in the United States, of which 5,217 are designated as "public use", including for general aviation and other activities.
Of the fifty busiest container ports, four are located in the United States, of which the busiest is the Port of Los Angeles. The country's inland waterways are the world's fifth-longest, and total 41,009 km (25,482 mi).
The U.S. Census Bureau reported 331,449,281 residents as of April 1, 2020,[m] making the United States the third-most populous nation in the world, after China and India. According to the Bureau's U.S. Population Clock, on January 28, 2021, the U.S. population had a net gain of one person every 100 seconds, or about 864 people per day. In 2018, 52% of Americans age 15 and over were married, 6% were widowed, 10% were divorced, and 32% had never been married. In 2021, the total fertility rate for the U.S. stood at 1.7 children per woman, and it had the world's highest rate of children (23%) living in single-parent households in 2019.
The United States has a diverse population; 37
While many languages are spoken in the United States, English is the most common.
According to the American Community Survey, in 2010 some 229 million people (out of the total U.S. population of 308 million) spoke only English at home. More than 37 million spoke Spanish at home, making it the second most commonly used language. Other languages spoken at home by one million people or more include Chinese (2.8 million), Tagalog (1.6 million), Vietnamese (1.4 million), French (1.3 million), Korean (1.1 million), and German (1 million).
The United States has by far the highest
The First Amendment guarantees the free exercise of religion and forbids Congress from passing laws respecting its establishment. Religious affiliation in the United States is among the most diverse in the world and varies significantly by region and age. The country has the world's largest Christian population and a majority of Americans identify as Christian, predominantly Catholic, mainline Protestant, or evangelical. Most Americans believe in a higher power, and sometimes or often pray; a majority have low confidence in religious institutions and do not regularly attend religious services.
A 2022 Gallup poll found that 31% reported "attending a church, synagogue, mosque or temple weekly or nearly weekly". In the "Bible Belt", located within the Southern United States, evangelical Protestantism plays a significant role culturally. New England and the Western United States tend to be less religious, although Mormonism—a Restorationist Christian movement started in New York in the 19th century—is the predominant religious affiliation in Utah. Around 6% of Americans claim a non-Christian faith; the largest of which are Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. The United States has the largest Jewish population outside of Israel. "Ceremonial deism" is common in American culture.
Until the 1990s, the country was an outlier among developed countries, having a high level of both religiosity and wealth, although this has lessened since then. Around one-third of Americans describe themselves as unaffiliated with organized religion, Atheist, or Agnostic. In contrast, in 2022 Baylor University religious studies scholars Byron R. Johnson and Jeff Levin opined: "Americans are becoming more religious, and religious institutions are thriving".
About 82% of Americans live in
|6||Washington, D.C.||South||6,356,434||16||Minneapolis–Saint Paul||Midwest||3,690,512|
In a preliminary report, the
The U.S. health care system far
Government-funded health care coverage for the poor (
Culture and society
Americans have traditionally
Nearly all present Americans or their ancestors came from
The United States is considered to have the
The four major broadcasters in the U.S. are the
Globally-recognized newspapers in the United States include
The video game market of the United States is the world's
Literature and visual arts
In the 18th and early 19th centuries, American art and literature took most of their cues from Europe. Writers such as Washington Irving, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan Poe, and Henry David Thoreau established a distinctive American literary voice by the middle of the 19th century. Mark Twain and poet Walt Whitman were major figures in the century's second half; Emily Dickinson, virtually unknown during her lifetime, is recognized as an essential American poet.
In the 1920s, the New Negro Movement coalesced in Harlem, where many writers had migrated from the South and West Indies. Its pan-African perspective was a significant cultural export during the Jazz Age in Paris and as such was a key early influence on the négritude philosophy.
Since its first use in the 19th century, the term "Great American Novel" has been applied to many books, including Herman Melville's Moby-Dick (1851), Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852), Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby (1925), John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath (1939), Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird (1960), Toni Morrison's Beloved (1987), and David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest (1996).
Thirteen U.S. citizens have won the Nobel Prize in Literature, most recently Louise Glück, Bob Dylan, and Toni Morrison. Earlier laureates William Faulkner, Ernest Hemingway and John Steinbeck have also been recognized as influential 20th century writers.
In the visual arts, the Hudson River School was a mid-19th-century movement in the tradition of European naturalism. The 1913 Armory Show in New York City, an exhibition of European modernist art, shocked the public and transformed the U.S. art scene. Georgia O'Keeffe, Marsden Hartley, and others experimented with new, individualistic styles, which would become known as American modernism.
Major artistic movements such as the abstract expressionism of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning and the pop art of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein developed largely in the United States. Major photographers include Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Dorothea Lange, Edward Weston, James Van Der Zee, Ansel Adams, and Gordon Parks.
The uniquely American "Chicago School" refers to two architectural styles derived from the
Cinema and theater
The United States movie industry has a worldwide influence and following. Hollywood, a district in northern Los Angeles, the nation's second-most populous city, is the leader in motion picture production and the most recognizable movie industry in the world. The major film studios of the United States are the primary source of the most commercially successful and most ticket-selling movies in the world.
Since the early 20th century, the U.S. film industry has largely been based in and around Hollywood, although in the 21st century an increasing number of films are not made there, and film companies have been subject to the forces of globalization.
Director D. W. Griffith's film adaptation of The Clansman: A Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan was the first American blockbuster, earning the equivalent of $1.8 billion in current dollars. The technical achievements of the film revolutionized film grammar, while its subject matter caused both strident protest and a revitalization of the Klan. Producer and entrepreneur Walt Disney was a leader in both animated film and movie merchandising. Directors such as John Ford redefined the image of the American Old West, and, like others such as John Huston, broadened the possibilities of cinema with location shooting. The industry enjoyed its golden years, in what is commonly referred to as the "Golden Age of Hollywood", from the early sound period until the early 1960s, with screen actors such as John Wayne and Marilyn Monroe becoming iconic figures. In the 1970s, "New Hollywood" or the "Hollywood Renaissance" was defined by grittier films influenced by French and Italian realist pictures of the post-war period.
Mainstream theater in the United States derives from the old European theatrical tradition and has been heavily influenced by the
The rhythmic and lyrical styles of African-American music have significantly influenced American music at large. The
American popular music, as part of the wider U.S. pop culture, has a worldwide influence and following. Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande, Eminem, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, and many other contemporary artists dominate global streaming rankings. The United States has the world's largest music market with a total retail value of $4.9 billion in 2014. Most of the world's major record companies are based in the U.S.; they are represented by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Early settlers were introduced by Native Americans to such indigenous, non-European foods as
The most popular spectator sports in the U.S. are American football, basketball, baseball, soccer, and ice hockey, according to a 2017 Gallup poll. While most major U.S. sports such as baseball and American football have evolved out of European practices, basketball, volleyball, skateboarding, and snowboarding are American inventions, some of which have become popular worldwide. Lacrosse and surfing arose from Native American and Native Hawaiian activities that predate European contact. The market for professional sports in the United States was approximately $69 billion in July 2013, roughly 50% larger than that of all of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa combined.
American football is by several measures the most popular spectator sport in the United States; the National Football League (NFL) has the highest average attendance of any sports league in the world, and the Super Bowl is watched by tens of millions globally. Baseball has been regarded as the U.S. national sport since the late 19th century, with Major League Baseball being the top league. Basketball, soccer and ice hockey are the country's next three most popular professional team sports, with the top leagues being the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League, which are also the premier leagues worldwide for these sports. The most-watched individual sports in the U.S. are golf and auto racing, particularly NASCAR and IndyCar.
On the collegiate level, earnings for the member institutions exceed $1 billion annually, and college football and basketball attract large audiences, as the NCAA Final Four is one of the most watched national sporting events. In many respects, the intercollegiate sports level serves as a feeder system to the professional level, as the elite college athletes are chosen to compete at the next level. This system differs greatly from nearly all other countries in the world, which generally have government-funded sports organizations that serve as a feeder system for professional competition.
Eight Olympic Games have taken place in the United States. The 1904 Summer Olympics in St. Louis, Missouri, were the first-ever Olympic Games held outside of Europe. The Olympic Games will be held in the U.S. for a ninth time when Los Angeles hosts the 2028 Summer Olympics. U.S. athletes have won a total of 2,959 medals (1,173 gold) at the Olympic Games, by far the most of any country.
In international soccer, the men's national soccer team qualified for eleven World Cups, and the women's national team has won the FIFA Women's World Cup and Olympic soccer tournament four times each. The United States hosted the 1994 FIFA World Cup and will co-host, along with Canada and Mexico, the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
- 30 of 50 states recognize only English as an official language. The state of Hawaii recognizes both Hawaiian and English as official languages, the state of Alaska officially recognizes 20 Alaska Native languages alongside English, and the state of South Dakota recognizes O'ceti Sakowin as an official language.
- The historical and informal demonym Yankee has been applied to Americans, New Englanders, or northeasterners since the 18th century.
- At 3,531,900 sq mi (9,147,590 km2), the United States is the third-largest country in the world by land area, behind Russia and China. By total area (land and water), it is the third-largest behind Russia and Canada, if its coastal and territorial water areas are included. However, if only its internal waters are included (bays, sounds, rivers, lakes, and the Great Lakes), the U.S. is the fourth-largest, after Russia, Canada, and China.
Coastal/territorial waters included: 3,796,742 sq mi (9,833,517 km2)
Only internal waters included: 3,696,100 sq mi (9,572,900 km2)
- After adjustment for taxes and transfers
- See Time in the United States for details about laws governing time zones in the United States.
- See Date and time notation in the United States.
- The five major territories are American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the United States Virgin Islands. There are eleven smaller island areas without permanent populations: Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Midway Atoll, and Palmyra Atoll. U.S. sovereignty over Bajo Nuevo Bank, Navassa Island, Serranilla Bank, and Wake Island is disputed.
- The U.S. Census Bureau provides a continuously updated but unofficial population clock in addition to its decennial census and annual population estimates: www.census.gov/popclock
- New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia
- Also known less formally as Obamacare
- 36 U.S.C. § 302
- "An Act To make The Star-Spangled Banner the national anthem of the United States of America". H.R. 14, Act of March 3, 1931. 71st United States Congress.
- "A Breakdown of 2020 Census Demographic Data". NPR. August 13, 2021.
- "About Three-in-Ten U.S. Adults Are Now Religiously Unaffiliated". Measuring Religion in Pew Research Center's American Trends Panel. Pew Research Center. December 14, 2021. Retrieved December 21, 2021.
- Compton's Pictured Encyclopedia and Fact-index: Ohio. 1963. p. 336.
- Bureau, US Census. "Growth in U.S. Population Shows Early Indication of Recovery Amid COVID-19 Pandemic". Census.gov. Retrieved December 24, 2022.
- "World Economic Outlook Database, April 2023". IMF.org. International Monetary Fund. April 10, 2023. Archived from the original on October 11, 2022. Retrieved April 10, 2023.
- Bureau, US Census. "Income and Poverty in the United States: 2020". Census.gov. p. 48. Retrieved July 26, 2022.
- "Human Development Report 2021/2022" (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. September 8, 2022. Retrieved September 8, 2022.
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|Library resources about |
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