USRS Frequently asked questions - USA Fast Facts
Facts about national symbols
- What is the national bird of the U.S.?
- What is the national flower of the U.S.?
- What is the national anthem?
- What does the U.S. flag look like?
- What is the Pledge of Allegiance?
Facts about government
- Who is the President of the United States?
- How many Presidents have there been so far?
- How often is a President elected?
- What is the capital city of the U.S.?
- What is the national holiday of the U.S.?
- What is the Constitution of the U.S.?
- What are the three branches of federal government of the U.S.?
Facts about history
Facts about the states
- How many states make up the United States?
- What is the largest statein the U.S.?
- What is the smallest state in the U.S.?
- What were the first and last states admitted to the Union?
Facts about demography and geography
- What is the current population of the U.S.?
- How often does the U.S. take a census?
- What is the biggest cityin the U.S.?
- What is the land areaof the U.S.?
- What borders the 48 continental states?
- What is the highest point in the U.S.?
- What is the lowest point in the U.S.?
- What is the biggest river in the U.S.?
FACTS ABOUT NATIONAL SYMBOLS
What is the national bird of the U.S.?
The Bald Eagle.
- Symbols of the U.S. government: the Bald Eagle
- The American Bald Eagle
- Bald Eagle - Haliaeetus leucocephalus
What is the national flower of the U.S.?
What is the national anthem?
The Star-Spangled Banner written by Francis Scott Key in 1814. However, the song did not officially become the national anthem until 1931.
The first of verse:
Oh, say can you see,
By the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hailed
At the twilight's last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars,
Through the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched
Were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare,
The bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night
That our flag was still there.
O, say, does that
Star-Spangled Banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free
And the home of the brave?
- U.S. Marine Band
- History of the national anthem
- Star-Spangled Banner: the flag that inspired the national anthem
- Star-Spangled Banner: lyrics & history
- Fort McHenry: birthplace of the national anthem
What does the U.S. flag look like?
The flag of the United States has 50 stars on a blue background and 13 stripes, alternating red and white. The 50 stars on the field of blue stand for the fifty states. The 13 red and white stripes stand for the first 13 colonies of the U.S. The color red stands for courage and strength, white stands for liberty, and blue stands for justice and loyalty.
What is the Pledge of Allegiance?
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty, and justice for all."
- The Pledge of Allegiance
- Songs and Oaths: the Pledge of Allegiance
- The Pledge of Allegiance: history
FACTS ABOUT GOVERNMENT
Who is the President of the United States?
Barack Hussein Obama became President of the United States on January 20, 2009.
How many Presidents have there been so far?
44, including President Obama.
How often is a President elected?
According to the Constitution of the U.S., a President must be elected every four years. Amendment 22 to the Constitution states: "No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of President more than once."
What is the capital city of the U.S.?
Washington, D.C. [District of Columbia]
- Washington, DC: official tourism site
- Washington: national register of historic places
- District of Columbia
What is the national holiday of the U.S.?
Independence Day, the Fourth of July. On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, announcing the 13 colonies' separation from Great Britain.
- Fourth of July is Independence Day
- Declaration of Independence
- Independence National Historical Park
What is the Constitution of the U.S.?
The Constitution is the governing document of the U.S. It was written in 1787 and ratified on June 21, 1788.
- Constitution of the U.S.
- Bill of Rights
- History of the Constitution
- About America: the Constitution with explanatory notes
What are the three branches of federal government of the U.S.?
The executive branch, the legislative branch, and the judicial branch.
FACTS ABOUT HISTORY
When was the Revolutionary War?
The Revolutionary War, also known as the War of Independence, began on April 19, 1775, at Concord, Massachusetts, and officially ended on October 19, 1781, when the British surrendered at Yorktown, Virginia.
- Revolutionary period 1764-1789
- Revolutionary War timeline
- American Revolution
- Revolutionary War: military history
- Outline of U.S. history
When was the Civil War?
The Civil War, also known as the War between the States, started on April 12, 1861, when Confederate artillery opened fire on the Federal Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, and ended on April 9, 1865, when General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia.
- Civil war 1860-1865
- Civil War timeline
- Civil War: military history
- The American Civil War
- Outline of U.S. history
FACTS ABOUT THE STATES
How many states make up the United States?
50: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
American Samoa, Guam, and the Virgin Islands are all territories of the United States. Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the Northern Mariana Islands are commonwealths.
- State Fact Sheets
- Commonwealths and Territories of the USA
- Explore the 50 states
- Statistics at state & local levels
- Travel & Tourism Sites
- States and capitals
What is the largest state in the U.S.?
California has the most people with a current population of about 37,000,000 and Alaska has the biggest land area with 616,240 square miles.
- Alaska official state government website
- California official state government website
- U.S. Census Bureau
- Profile of the people & land of the U.S.
What is the smallest state in the U.S.?
According to the 2008 population estimates, Wyoming has the least number of people with a population of about 533,000. Rhode Island has the smallest land area with 1,231 square miles.
- Wyoming official state government website
- Rhode Island official state government website
- U.S. Census Bureau
- Profile of the people & land of the U.S.
What were the first and last states admitted to the Union?
On December 7, 1787, Delaware became the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. On August 21, 1959, Hawaii became the 50th state admitted to the Union.
FACTS ABOUT DEMOGRAPHY AND GEOGRAPHY
What is the current population of the U.S.?
The estimated population is over 308,000,000 people.
How often does the U.S. take a census?
Every 10 years. The next census will take place in 2010. The last census was in 2000.
What is the biggest city in the U.S.?
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, New York is still tops in population at 8.2 million and Los Angeles is second at 3.8 million.
What is the land area of the U.S.?
3,537,422 square miles. The United States has a total area of 3,537,422 square miles, making it the third largest country in the world after Russia and Canada.
What borders the 48 continental states?
To the North: Canada. To the South: Mexico and the Gulf of Mexico. To the East: the Atlantic Ocean. To the West: the Pacific Ocean.
What is the highest point in the U.S.?
Mt. McKinley, Alaska, 20,320 ft. (6194 m.) above sea level.
What is the lowest point in the U.S.?
Death Valley, California, 282 ft (86 m.) below sea level.
What is the biggest river in the U.S.?
The Missouri River is the longest at 2,540 miles. The Mississippi River is the largest by drainage area.
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