Last updated on August 24th, 2018
The United States of America is a country consisting of 50 independent states in the northern part of America, sixteen territories and a district of Columbia (Washington D.C.). It is the world’s third most populous country after China and India and the world’s fourth largest country by land area after Russia, Canada, and China.
Facts About The United States
1. The United States of America is also referred to as “the States”, “the United States”, “the U.S.”, “the USA”, and “America”.
2. In 1783, the United States became the first country to gain independence from a European power.
3. Did you know that the GPS is operated and maintained by the U.S. Air Force? The Global Positioning System is a utility that provides users with positioning, navigation, and timing (PNT) services. The system consists of three segments: the space segment, the control segment, and the user segment. Learn more about GPS.
4. The first constitution of the United States was adopted in 1788. For the acceptance of the constitution which was proposed in 1787, nine states needed to vote in its favor. Delaware was the first state and New Hampshire was the ninth state to accept the constitution, thus making it legal. [1,8]
5. The United States is the first country to have developed nuclear weapon and the only country to have used them in combat.
6. The United States and Russia both claim to have landed on the moon for the first time in history in 1969.
7. The U.S. is the world’s largest economy by nominal GDP and the world’s second-largest economy by PPP.
8. At 33.4%, the U.S. holds the world’s largest share of wealth.
9. The phrase “United States of America” was first published anonymously in the Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776.
10. Did you know that more than one-third of adults in the United States are obese? Obesity costs Americans $147 billion each year. Colorado has the lowest obesity rates.
11. Alaska has the longest coastline of any state while Florida has the second longest.
12. The first inhabitants of the region arrived at least 15,000 years ago.
13. The United States of America has the world’s largest air force. It was founded on September 18, 1947. The USAF with more than 5,369 military aircraft is the most technologically advanced air force in the world.
14. Michael Phelps, a retired swimmer, from the United States is the most decorated and the most successful Olympian of all times. He has won 28 medals. Phelps won eight gold medals at 2008 Beijing Games.
16. The United States is twice the size of the European Union.
17. Spanish is the second most common language spoken in the U.S. However, the U.S. does not have any official language.
18. Lasting from 1929 to 1939, The Great Depression was the worst economic downturn in the history of America. The economic crash happened because of the soaring stock prices and the decline in production of goods coupled with rising unemployment. The crash of the stock market kick-started the depression which eventually left millions unemployed, furthered slowdown of production, and led to the failure of more than half of the country’s banks.
19. The U.S. is one of the most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations.
20. The U.S. was formed by thirteen colonies of Great Britain after defeating Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was issued.
22. The country has a large population. However, due to the fact that it also has an extensive area under its territory, the population density of America is relatively low.
23. Death Valley is the lowest point in the continent and Mt. McKinley is the highest point in North America.
24. The U.S. is the world’s largest consumer of cocaine which is allegedly shipped from Columbia.
25. George Washington was the first president of the United States.
26. To the west of the United States lies the Pacific Ocean and to the East lies the Atlantic Ocean. Mexico lies at the southern end of the country and thus connects the U.S. with the other South American countries.
27. The horizontal width of the U.S. is 2860 miles and the vertical length of the country is 1582 miles. Hawaii is the widest U.S. state from east to west.[17,18]
28. The geographical center of the 48 contiguous U.S. states is located at
29. The United States has 16 territories out of which five are permanently inhabited (Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and American Samoa.) These five are classified as unincorporated territories. The other uninhabited 11 territories of the U.S. include Bajo Nuevo Bank, Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Midway Islands, Navassa Island, Palmyra Atoll, Serranilla Bank and Wake Island (these 11 territories have no permanent or native population).`
30. Amazingly, 100 acres of pizza are served in the U.S. every day.
31. Interestingly, Abraham Lincoln is the only U.S. president to own a patent and a saloon.
32. Did you know that before 1776, the United States was not a single country? The individual states were colonies of the British Empire, called British Colonies. Initially, thirteen colonies came together to become a new country.
33. Did you know that the important ideas for the declaration of independence were contributed by a committee of five people including Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Livingston, John Adams and Roger Sherman? Although the credit for authoring the Declaration of Independence is often given to Thomas Jefferson.
34. On the back of the Declaration of Independence, a few words are handwritten that say “Original Declaration of Independence/ dated 4th July 1776”. However, it is not known who wrote this. About 200 copies of the declaration were made. The original copy of the document is housed and displayed at the National Archives in Washington DC.
35. Four of the forty-five presidents of the United States have been assassinated in office.
36. The current U.S. flag was designed by a high school student – Robert G. Heft.
37. Did you know that the U.S. purchased Alaska from Russia for just US$7.2 million in 1867?
38. After Christianity and Judaism, Islam is the third largest religion in number in the U.S.
39. Three U.S. presidents died on 4th of July. Thomas Jefferson and John Adam died on July 4, 1826, while John Monroe died on July 4, 1831.
40. The only point shared by four states (Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico) in the U.S. is the Four Corners Monument.
41. Did you know that Nelson Mandela was on U.S. terror watch list until 2008?
42. According to Title 3 of the US Code, the U.S. president earns a salary of $400,000 a year.
43. The United States is one of the 17 megadiverse countries (megadiverse refers to a country where the majority of Earth’s species and a high number of endemic species are found) of the world. The other sixteen countries include Australia, Brazil, China, Columbia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, and Venezuela.
44. American Civil War happened between 1861 and 1865 when the United States and 11 southern states (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina) left the union and formed the Confederate States of America. The war happened during the presidency of Abraham Lincoln (the 16th president of the U.S.) Lincoln was the candidate of the explicitly antislavery Republican Party. Soon after his election as the president of the nation, seven Southern states organized as the Confederate States of America.
46. Did you know that there are 50 states in the United States of America and not 52? There are various myths that there are 52 and not 50 states. The U.S. flag has 50 stars on it, each representing a state in the union.
47. The first moving assembly line for the mass production of an entire automobile was installed in America by the legendary businessman and industrialist Henry Ford on December 01, 1913.
48. The Watergate scandal emerged in the June 17 of 1972 when several burglars while attempting to steal important documents and wiretapping phones were arrested in the office of the Democratic National Committee located in Washington D.C. The conspiracy was linked with the then president Nixon when he was running for reelection. In August 1974, Nixon resigned after his role in the conspiracy was revealed.
49. Did you know that more than 3 million people including 58,000 Americans were killed in the Vietnam War? The war happened due to the conflict between North Vietnam and South Vietnam. The United States of America supported South Vietnam during the war, which they unfortunately lost.
50. Apple Computer launched its Macintosh computer in 1984. The company is today valued at more than $1 Trillion, becoming the second publicly traded company to reach the mark. The first company to cross $1 Trillion valuation was Oil Giant PetroChina which crossed the mark in 2007, however, for a brief period.
51. The United States is the largest producer of nuclear power, while France has the largest share of electricity generated by nuclear power.
52. The U.S. has 99 operating commercial nuclear reactors at 61 nuclear power plants in 30 states. On an average, these nuclear reactors are 37 years old. The oldest of these began its commercial operation in December 1969. Illinois has more reactors than any other state with 11 reactors at 6 plants. And the largest of these reactors is located in Mississippi.
53. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in every four deaths in the United States is due to heart attack. Every year in America about 735,000 people have a heart attack.
54. Did you know that the foreign motor vehicle manufacturing companies are manufacturing more cars and trucks in the United States than that of all of the U.S. automobile manufacturing companies combined?
55. Did you know that the United States has sent athletes to every modern Olympic Games except the 1980 Summer Olympics, during which it led a boycott. Note that in Summer Olympics between 1896 and 2018, the U.S. has won the most number of medals than any other nation.[34,35,36]
57. Did you know that there are at least 5,000 aircraft in the skies over the U.S territory at any given time? These aircrafts are handled by 521 air traffic control towers with a combined working strength of 14,050 air traffic controllers.
United States – Quick facts and information
|Independence||4 July 1776 (declared independence from Great Britain); 3 September 1783 (recognized by Great Britain)|
|Capital City||Washington, D.C.|
|Largest City||New York City|
|Total area||9,833,517 sq km|
|Population||326,625,791 (July 2017 est.)|
|Suffrage||18 years of age; universal|
|Borders||Canada and Mexico|
|Currency||United States dollar ($) (USD)|
|Religion||Protestant 46.5%, Roman Catholic 20.8%, Jewish 1.9%, Mormon 1.6%, other Christian 0.9%, Muslim 0.9%, Jehovah's Witness 0.8%, Buddhist 0.7%, Hindu 0.7%, other 1.8%, unaffiliated 22.8%, don't know/refused 0.6% (2014 est.)|
|Life expectancy||80 years (2017)|
Life expectancy at birth indicates the number of years a newborn infant would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life.
|Climate||mostly temperate, but tropical in Hawaii and Florida, arctic in Alaska, semiarid in the great plains west of the Mississippi River, and arid in the Great Basin of the southwest; low winter temperatures in the northwest are ameliorated occasionally in January and February by warm chinook winds from the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains|
|Terrain||vast central plain, mountains in west, hills and low mountains in east; rugged mountains and broad river valleys in Alaska; rugged, volcanic topography in Hawaii|
|Government type||constitutional federal republic|
|Natural resources||coal, copper, lead, molybdenum, phosphates, rare earth elements, uranium, bauxite, gold, iron, mercury, nickel, potash, silver, tungsten, zinc, petroleum, natural gas, timber, arable land|
|Birth rate||12.5 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)|
|Death rate||8.2 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)|
|Sex ratio||0.97 male(s)/female (2017 est.)|
|National symbol||bald eagle|
|National anthem||"The Star-Spangled Banner"|
|National colors||red, white, blue|
|Industries||highly diversified, world leading, high-technology innovator, second-largest industrial output in the world; petroleum, steel, motor vehicles, aerospace, telecommunications, chemicals, electronics, food processing, consumer goods, lumber, mining|
|Exports||$1.576 trillion (2017 est.)|
agricultural products (soybeans, fruit, corn) 9.2%, industrial supplies (organic chemicals) 26.8%, capital goods (transistors, aircraft, motor vehicle parts, computers, telecommunications equipment) 49.0%, consumer goods (automobiles, medicines) 15.0% (2008 est.)
|Imports||$2.352 trillion (2017 est.)|
agricultural products 4.9%, industrial supplies 32.9% (crude oil 8.2%), capital goods 30.4% (computers, telecommunications equipment, motor vehicle parts, office machines, electric power machinery), consumer goods 31.8% (automobiles, clothing, medicines, furniture, toys) (2008 est.)
|GDP - per capita (PPP)||$59,500 (2017 est.)|
|Time Zone||(UTC−4 to −12, +10, +11)|
|Internet country code||.us|
|Drives on the||Right|
|Data sources||CIA, Wikipedia|
|Table last updated||August 14, 2018|