The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed no later than June 17, 1776, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the 'United States of America'." The final version of the Articles, sent to the states for ratification in late 1777, stated that "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be 'The United States of America'." In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence. This draft of the document did not surface until June 21, 1776, and it is unclear whether it was written before or after Dickinson used the term in his June 17 draft of the Articles of Confederation.
The phrase "United States" was originally plural in American usage. It described a collection of states—e.g., "the United States are." The singular form became popular after the end of the Civil War and is now standard usage in the U.S. A citizen of the United States is an "American". "United States", "American" and "U.S." refer to the country adjectivally ("American values", "U.S. forces"). In English, the word "American" rarely refers to topics or subjects not directly connected with the United States.
It has been generally accepted that the first inhabitants of North America migrated from Siberia by way of the Bering land bridge and arrived at least 12,000 years ago; however, some evidence suggests an even earlier date of arrival. The Clovis culture, which appeared around 11,000 BC, is believed to represent the first wave of human settlement of the Americas. This was likely the first of three major waves of migration into North America; later waves brought the ancestors of present-day Athabaskans, Aleuts, and Eskimos.
Over time, indigenous cultures in North America grew increasingly complex, and some, such as the pre-Columbian Mississippian culture in the southeast, developed advanced agriculture, architecture, and complex societies. The city-state of Cahokia is the largest, most complex pre-Columbian archaeological site in the modern-day United States. In the Four Corners region, Ancestral Puebloan culture developed from centuries of agricultural experimentation. The Haudenosaunee, located in the southern Great Lakes region, was established at some point between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries. Most prominent along the Atlantic coast were the Algonquian tribes, who practiced hunting and trapping, along with limited cultivation.
In the early days of colonization, many European settlers were subject to food shortages, disease, and attacks from Native Americans. Native Americans were also often at war with neighboring tribes and European settlers. In many cases, however, the natives and settlers came to depend on one another. Settlers traded for food and animal pelts; natives for guns, tools and other European goods. Natives 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. However, with the increased European colonization of North America, the Native Americans were displaced and often killed. The native population of America declined after European arrival for various reasons, primarily diseases such as smallpox and measles.
European settlers also began trafficking of African slaves into Colonial America via the transatlantic slave trade. Because of a lower prevalence of tropical diseases and better treatment, slaves had a much higher life expectancy in North America than in South America, leading to a rapid increase in their numbers. Colonial society was largely divided over the religious and moral implications of slavery, and several colonies passed acts both against and in favor of the practice. However, by the turn of the 18th century, African slaves had supplanted European indentured servants as cash crop labor, especially in the American South.
During the Seven Years' War (1756–1763), known in the U.S. as the French and Indian War, British forces captured Canada from the French. With the creation of the Province of Quebec, Canada's francophone population would remain isolated from the English-speaking colonial dependencies of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and the Thirteen Colonies. Excluding the Native Americans who lived there, the Thirteen Colonies had a population of over 2.1 million in 1770, about a third that of Britain. Despite continuing new arrivals, the rate of natural increase was such that by the 1770s only a small minority of Americans had been born overseas. The colonies' distance from Britain had allowed the development of self-government, but their unprecedented success motivated British monarchs to periodically seek to reassert royal authority.
Although the federal 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 slave population. 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.
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. The giving away of vast quantities of land to white European settlers as part of the Homestead Acts, nearly 10% of the total area of the United States, and to private railroad companies and colleges as part of land grants spurred economic development. After the Civil War, new transcontinental railways made relocation easier for settlers, expanded internal trade, and increased conflicts with Native Americans. In 1869, a new Peace Policy nominally promised to protect Native Americans from abuses, avoid further war, and secure their eventual U.S. citizenship. Nonetheless, large-scale conflicts continued throughout the West into the 1900s.
Irreconcilable sectional conflict regarding the enslavement of Africans and African Americans ultimately led to the American Civil War. With the 1860 election of RepublicanAbraham Lincoln, conventions in thirteen slave states declared secession and formed the Confederate States of America (the "South" or the "Confederacy"), while the federal government (the "Union") maintained that secession was illegal. In order to bring about this secession, military action was initiated by the secessionists, and the Union responded in kind. The ensuing war would become the deadliest military conflict in American history, resulting in the deaths of approximately 618,000 soldiers as well as many civilians. The Union initially simply fought to keep the country united. Nevertheless, as casualties mounted after 1863 and Lincoln delivered his Emancipation Proclamation, the main purpose of the war from the Union's viewpoint became the abolition of slavery. Indeed, when the Union ultimately won the war in April 1865, each of the states in the defeated South was required to ratify the Thirteenth Amendment, which prohibited slavery except as penal labor. Two other amendments were also ratified, ensuring citizenship for blacks and, at least in theory, voting rights for them as well.
Reconstruction began in earnest following the war. While President Lincoln attempted to foster friendship and forgiveness between the Union and the former Confederacy, his assassination on April 14, 1865 drove a wedge between North and South again. Republicans in the federal government made it their goal to oversee the rebuilding of the South and to ensure the rights of African Americans. They persisted until the Compromise of 1877 when the Republicans agreed to cease protecting the rights of African Americans in the South in order for Democrats to concede the presidential election of 1876.
After World War II, the United States and the Soviet Union competed for power, influence, and prestige during what became known as the Cold War, driven by an ideological divide between capitalism and communism. They dominated the military affairs of Europe, with the U.S. and its NATO allies on one side and the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies on the other. The U.S. developed a policy of containment towards the expansion of communist influence. While the U.S. and Soviet Union engaged in proxy wars and developed powerful nuclear arsenals, the two countries avoided direct military conflict.
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.Hawaii, occupying an archipelago in the central Pacific, southwest of North America, is 10,931 square miles (28,311 km2) in area. The five populated but unincorporated territories of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and U.S. Virgin Islands together cover 9,185 square miles (23,789 km2). Measured by only land area, the United States is third in size behind Russia and China, just ahead of Canada.
The United States is the world's third- or fourth-largest nation by total area (land and water), ranking behind Russia and Canada and nearly equal to China. The ranking varies depending on how two territories disputed by China and India are counted, and how the total size of the United States is measured.[c]
The U.S. is one of 17 megadiverse countries containing a large amount of endemic species: about 17,000 species of vascular plants occur in the contiguous United States and Alaska, and more than 1,800 species of flowering plants are found in Hawaii, few of which occur on the mainland. The United States is home to 428 mammal species, 784 bird species, 311 reptile species, and 295 amphibian species, as well as about 91,000 insect species.
There are 62 national parks and hundreds of other federally managed parks, forests, and wilderness areas. Altogether, the government owns about 28% of the country's land area, mostly 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 about .86% is used for military purposes.
In 2017, out of the U.S. foreign-born population, some 45% (20.7 million) were naturalized citizens, 27% (12.3 million) were lawful permanent residents, 6% (2.2 million) were temporary lawful residents, and 23% (10.5 million) were unauthorized immigrants. Among current living immigrants to the U.S., the top five countries of birth are Mexico, China, India, the Philippines and El Salvador. Until 2017, the United States led the world in refugee resettlement for decades, admitting more refugees than the rest of the world combined.
As of 2018[update], 52% of Americans age 15 and over were married, 6% were widowed, 10% were divorced, and 32% had never been married. As of 2020, the total fertility rate stood at 1.64 children per woman. In 2013, the average age at first birth was 26, and 41% of births were to unmarried women. In 2019, the U.S. had the world's highest rate (23%) of children living in single-parent households; the rates in Canada and Mexico were 15% and 7%, respectively.
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 in the United States. 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 the world's largest Christian population. In a 2014 survey, 70.6% of adults in the United States identified themselves as Christians;Protestants accounted for 46.5%, while Catholics, at 20.8%, formed the largest single Christian denomination. In 2014, 5.9% of the U.S. adult population claimed a non-Christian religion. These include Judaism (1.9%), Islam (0.9%), Hinduism (0.7%), and Buddhism (0.7%). The survey also reported that 22.8% of Americans described themselves as agnostic, atheist or simply having no religion—up from 8.2% in 1990. Membership in a house of worship fell from 70% in 1999 to 47% in 2020, much of the decline related to the number of Americans expressing no religious preference. However, membership also fell among those who identified with a specific religious group.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that the United States had an average life expectancy at birth of 78.8 years in 2019 (76.3 years for men and 81.4 years for women), up 0.1 year from 2018. This was the second year that overall U.S. life expectancy rose slightly after three years of overall declines that followed decades of continuous improvement. The recent decline, primarily among the age group 25 to 64, was largely due to record highs in the drug overdose and suicide rates; the country still has one of the highest suicide rates among wealthy countries. From 1999 to 2019, more than 770,000 Americans died from drug overdoses. Life expectancy was highest among Asians and Hispanics and lowest among blacks.
Increasing obesity in the United States and improvements in health and longevity outside the U.S. contributed to lowering the country's rank in life expectancy from 11th in the world in 1987 to 42nd in 2007. In 2017, the United States had the lowest life expectancy among Japan, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and seven nations in western Europe. Obesity rates have more than doubled in the last 30 years and are the highest in the industrialized world. Approximately one-third of the adult population is obese and an additional third is overweight. Obesity-related type2 diabetes is considered epidemic by health care professionals.
Government-funded health care coverage for the poor (Medicaid, established in 1965) and for those age 65 and older (Medicare, begun in 1966) is available to Americans who meet the programs' income or age qualifications. Nonetheless, the United States remains the only developed nation without a system of universal health care. In 2017, 12.2% of the population did not carry health insurance. The subject of uninsured and underinsured Americans is a major political issue. The Affordable Care Act (ACA), passed in early 2010 and informally known as "ObamaCare", roughly halved the uninsured share of the population. The bill and its ultimate effect are still issues of controversy in the United States. The U.S. health care system far outspends that of any other nation, measured both in per capita spending and as a percentage of GDP. However, the U.S. is a global leader in medical innovation.
Of Americans 25 and older, 84.6% graduated from high school, 52.6% attended some college, 27.2% earned a bachelor's degree, and 9.6% earned graduate degrees. The basic literacy rate is approximately 99%. The United Nations assigns the United States an Education Index of 0.97, tying it for 12th in the world.
The United States has many private and public institutions of higher education. The majority of the world's top universities, as listed by various ranking organizations, are in the U.S. There are also local community colleges with generally more open admission policies, shorter academic programs, and lower tuition.
In 2018, U21, a network of research-intensive universities, ranked the United States first in the world for breadth and quality of higher education, and 15th when GDP was a factor. As for public expenditures on higher education, the U.S. trails some other OECD (Organization for Cooperation and Development) nations but spends more per student than the OECD average, and more than all nations in combined public and private spending. As of 2018[update], student loan debt exceeded 1.5 trillion dollars.
The government is regulated by a system of checks and balances defined by the U.S. Constitution, which serves as the country's supreme legal document. The original text of the Constitution establishes the structure and responsibilities of the federal government and its relationship with the individual states. Article One protects the right to the writ of habeas corpus. The Constitution has been amended 27 times; the first ten amendments, which make up the Bill of Rights, and the Fourteenth Amendment form the central basis of Americans' individual rights. All laws and governmental procedures are subject to judicial review, and any law can be voided if the courts determine that it violates the Constitution. The principle of judicial review, not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution, was established by the Supreme Court in Marbury v. Madison (1803) in a decision handed down by Chief Justice John Marshall.
The Senate has 100 members with each state having two senators, elected at-large to six-year terms; one-third of Senate seats are up for election every two years. The District of Columbia and the five major U.S. territories do not have senators. The president serves a four-year term and may be elected to the office no more than twice. The president is not elected by direct vote, but by an indirect electoral college system in which the determining votes are apportioned to the states and the District of Columbia. The Supreme Court, led by the chief justice of the United States, has nine members, who serve for life.
The 50 states are the principal political divisions in the country. Each state holds jurisdiction over a defined geographic territory, where it shares sovereignty with the federal government. They are subdivided into counties or county equivalents and further divided into municipalities. The District of Columbia is a federal district that contains the capital of the United States, the city of Washington. The states and the District of Columbia choose the president of the United States. Each state has presidential electors equal to the number of their representatives and senators in Congress; the District of Columbia has three because of the 23rd Amendment.Territories of the United States such as Puerto Rico do not have presidential electors, and so people in those territories cannot vote for the president.
The United States also observes tribal sovereignty of the American Indian nations to a limited degree, as it does with the states' sovereignty. American Indians are U.S. citizens and tribal lands are subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S. Congress and the federal courts. Like the states they have a great deal of autonomy, but also like the states, tribes are not allowed to make war, engage in their own foreign relations, or print and issue currency.
Citizenship is granted at birth in all states, the District of Columbia, and all major U.S. territories except American Samoa.[k]
U.S. Government spending and revenue from 1792 to 2018
Taxation in the United States is progressive, and is levied at the federal, state, and local government levels. This includes taxes on income, payroll, property, sales, imports, estates, and gifts, as well as various fees. Taxation in the United States is based on citizenship, not residency. Both non-resident citizens and Green Card holders living abroad are taxed on their income irrespective of where they live or where their income is earned. The United States is one of the few countries in the world to do so.
In 2010 taxes collected by federal, state and municipal governments amounted to 24.8% of GDP. Based on CBO estimates, under 2013 tax law the top 1% will be paying the highest average tax rates since 1979, while other income groups will remain at historic lows. For 2018, the effective tax rate for the wealthiest 400 households was 23%, compared to 24.2% for the bottom half of U.S. households.
During fiscal year 2012, the federal government spent $3.54 trillion on a budget or cash basis. Major categories of fiscal year 2012 spending included: Medicare & Medicaid (23%), Social Security (22%), Defense Department (19%), non-defense discretionary (17%), other mandatory (13%) and interest (6%).
The United States spent $649 billion on its military in 2019, 36% of global military spending. At 4.7% of GDP, the rate was the second-highest among the top 15 military spenders, after Saudi Arabia. Defense spending plays a major role in science and technology investment, with roughly half of U.S. federal research and development funded by the Department of Defense. Defense's share of the overall U.S. economy has generally declined in recent decades, from early Cold War peaks of 14.2% of GDP in 1953 and 69.5% of federal spending in 1954 to 4.7% of GDP and 18.8% of federal spending in 2011. In total number of personnel, the United States has the third-largest combined armed forces in the world, behind the Chinese People's Liberation Army and Indian Armed Forces.
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." In 2016, the U.S. murder rate was 5.4 per 100,000.
Total incarceration in the United States by year (1920–2014)
Although most nations have abolished capital punishment, it is sanctioned in the United States for certain federal and military crimes, and at the state level in 28 states, though three states have moratoriums on carrying out the penalty imposed by their governors. In 2019, the country had the sixth-highest number of executions in the world, following China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Egypt. No executions took place from 1967 to 1977, owing in part to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking down the practice. Since the decision, however, there have been more than 1,500 executions. In recent years the number of executions and presence of capital punishment statute on whole has trended down nationally, with several states recently abolishing the penalty.
In 2009, the private sector was estimated to constitute 86.4% of the economy. While its economy has reached a postindustrial level of development, the United States remains an industrial power. In August 2010, the American labor force consisted of 154.1 million people (50%). With 21.2 million people, government is the leading field of employment. The largest private employment sector is health care and social assistance, with 16.4 million people. It has a smaller welfare state and redistributes less income through government action than most European nations.
The United States has been a leader in technological innovation since the late 19th century and scientific research since the mid-20th century. Methods for producing interchangeable parts were developed by the U.S. War Department by the Federal Armories during the first half of the 19th century. This technology, along with the establishment of a machine tool industry, enabled the U.S. to have large-scale manufacturing of sewing machines, bicycles, and other items in the late 19th century and became known as the American system of manufacturing. Factory electrification in the early 20th century and introduction of the assembly line and other labor-saving techniques created the system of mass production. In the 21st century, approximately two-thirds of research and development funding comes from the private sector. The United States leads the world in scientific research papers and impact factor.
Wealth, like income and taxes, is highly concentrated; the richest 10% of the adult population possess 72% of the country's household wealth, while the bottom half possess only 2%. According to the Federal Reserve, the top 1% controlled 38.6% of the country's wealth in 2016. In 2017, Forbes found that just three individuals (Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates) held more money than the bottom half of the population. According to a 2018 study by the OECD, the United States has a larger percentage of low-income workers than almost any other developed nation, largely because of a weak collective bargaining system and lack of government support for at-risk workers. The top one percent of income-earners accounted for 52 percent of the income gains from 2009 to 2015, where income is defined as market income excluding government transfers.
After years of stagnation, median household income reached a record high in 2016 following two consecutive years of record growth. Income inequality remains at record highs however, with the top fifth of earners taking home more than half of all overall income. The rise in the share of total annual income received by the top one percent, which has more than doubled from nine percent in 1976 to 20 percent in 2011, has significantly affected income inequality, leaving the United States with one of the widest income distributions among OECD nations. The extent and relevance of income inequality is a matter of debate.
Personal transportation is dominated by automobiles, which operate on a network of 4 million miles (6.4 million kilometers) of public roads. The United States has the world's second-largest automobile market, and has the highest vehicle ownership per capita in the world, with 816.4 vehicles per 1,000 Americans (2014). In 2017, there were 255,009,283 non-two wheel motor vehicles, or about 910 vehicles per 1,000 people.
The United States has the longest rail network in the world, nearly all standard gauge. The network handles mostly freight, with intercity passenger service provided by the government-subsidized Amtrak to all but four states.
For many immigrants, the Statue of Liberty was their first view of the United States. It signified new opportunities in life, and thus the statue is an iconic symbol of the American Dream as well as its ideals.
Americans have traditionally been characterized by a strong work ethic, competitiveness, and individualism, as well as a unifying belief in an "American creed" emphasizing liberty, equality, private property, democracy, rule of law, and a preference for limited government. Americans are extremely charitable by global standards: according to a 2006 British study, Americans gave 1.67% of GDP to charity, more than any other nation studied.
Early settlers were introduced by Native Americans to such indigenous, non-European foods as turkey, sweet potatoes, corn, squash, and maple syrup. They and later immigrants combined these with foods they had known, such as wheat flour, beef, and milk to create a distinctive American cuisine.
Homegrown foods are part of a shared national menu on one of America's most popular holidays, Thanksgiving, when some Americans make traditional foods to celebrate the occasion.
Among America's earliest composers was a man named William Billings who, born in Boston, composed patriotic hymns in the 1770s; Billings was a part of the First New England School, who dominated American music during its earliest stages. Anthony Heinrich was the most prominent composer before the Civil War. From the mid-late 1800s John Philip Sousa of the late Romantic era, composed numerous military songs—particularly marches—and is regarded as one of America's greatest composers. By the late 19th century, the Second New England School (sometimes referred to specifically as the "Boston Six") became prominent representatives of the classical tradition, of whom John Knowles Paine was the leading figure.
Although little known at the time, Charles Ives's work of the 1910s established him as the first major U.S. composer in the classical tradition, while experimentalists such as Henry Cowell and John Cage created a distinctive American approach to classical composition. Aaron Copland and George Gershwin—eventually furthered by Leonard Bernstein—developed a new synthesis of popular and classical music.
Hollywood, a northern district of Los Angeles, California, is one of the leaders in motion picture production. The world's first commercial motion picture exhibition was given in New York City in 1894, using Thomas Edison's Kinetoscope. 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.
In 1998, the number of U.S. commercial radio stations had grown to 4,793 AM stations and 5,662 FM stations. In addition, there are 1,460 public radio stations. Most of these stations are run by universities and public authorities for educational purposes and are financed by public or private funds, subscriptions, and corporate underwriting. Much public radio broadcasting is supplied by NPR. NPR was incorporated in February 1970 under the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967; its television counterpart, PBS, was created by the same legislation. As of September 30, 2014[update], there are 15,433 licensed full-power radio stations in the U.S. according to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Well-known newspapers include The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and USA Today. Although the cost of publishing has increased over the years, the price of newspapers has generally remained low, forcing newspapers to rely more on advertising revenue and on articles provided by a major wire service, such as the Associated Press or Reuters, for their national and world coverage. With very few exceptions, all the newspapers in the U.S. are privately owned, either by large chains such as Gannett or McClatchy, which own dozens or even hundreds of newspapers; by small chains that own a handful of papers; or in a situation that is increasingly rare, by individuals or families. Major cities often have "alternative weeklies" to complement the mainstream daily papers, such as New York City's The Village Voice or Los Angeles' LA Weekly. Major cities may also support a local business journal, trade papers relating to local industries, and papers for local ethnic and social groups. Aside from web portals and search engines, the most popular websites are Facebook, YouTube, Wikipedia, Yahoo!, eBay, Amazon, and Twitter.
More than 800 publications are produced in Spanish, the second most commonly used language in the United States behind English.
^The historical and informal demonym Yankee has been applied to Americans, New Englanders, or northeasterners since the 18th century.
^ abcThe United States is the third-largest country, after Canada, if coastal and territorial waters are included. If excluded, it is the fourth-largest, after China.
Coastal/territorial waters included: 3,796,742 sq mi (9,833,517 km2)
Coastal/territorial waters excluded: 3,696,100 sq mi (9,572,900 km2)
^People born in American Samoa are non-citizen U.S. nationals, unless one of their parents is a U.S. citizen. In 2019, a court ruled that American Samoans are U.S. citizens, but the litigation is onging.
^"uscode.house.gov". Public Law 105-225. uscode.house.gov. August 12, 1999. pp. 112 Stat. 1263. Retrieved September 10, 2017. Section 304. "The composition by John Philip Sousa entitled 'The Stars and Stripes Forever' is the national march."
^"Measuring Religion in Pew Research Center's American Trends Panel". Measuring Religion in Pew Research Center’s American Trends Panel | Pew Research Center. Pew Research Center. January 14, 2021. Archived from the original on February 8, 2021. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
^Compton's Pictured Encyclopedia and Fact-index: Ohio. 1963. p. 336.
^Areas of the 50 states and the District of Columbia but not Puerto Rico nor other island territories per "State Area Measurements and Internal Point Coordinates". Census.gov. August 2010. Retrieved March 31, 2020. reflect base feature updates made in the MAF/TIGER database through August, 2010.
^OECD (2004), "Generic Top Level Domain Names: Market Development and Allocation Issues", OECD Digital Economy Papers, No. 84, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://doi.org/10.1787/232630011251.
^U.S. State Department, Common Core Document to U.N. Committee on Human Rights, December 30, 2011, Item 22, 27, 80. And U.S. General Accounting Office Report, U.S. Insular Areas: application of the U.S. Constitution, November 1997, pp. 1, 6, 39n. Both viewed April 6, 2016.
^Szalay, Jessie (September 20, 2017). "Amerigo Vespucci: Facts, Biography & Naming of America". Live Science. Retrieved June 23, 2019.
^Jonathan Cohen. "The Naming of America: Fragments We've Shored Against Ourselves". Retrieved February 3, 2014.
^DeLear, Byron (July 4, 2013) Who coined 'United States of America'? Mystery might have intriguing answer. "Historians have long tried to pinpoint exactly when the name 'United States of America' was first used and by whom... This latest find comes in a letter that Stephen Moylan, Esq., wrote to Col. Joseph Reed from the Continental Army Headquarters in Cambridge, Mass., during the Siege of Boston. The two men lived with Washington in Cambridge, with Reed serving as Washington's favorite military secretary and Moylan fulfilling the role during Reed's absence." Christian Science Monitor (Boston, MA).
^Touba, Mariam (November 5, 2014) Who Coined the Phrase 'United States of America'? You May Never Guess "Here, on January 2, 1776, seven months before the Declaration of Independence and a week before the publication of Paine's Common Sense, Stephen Moylan, an acting secretary to General George Washington, spells it out, 'I should like vastly to go with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain' to seek foreign assistance for the cause." New-York Historical Society Museum & Library
^Fay, John (July 15, 2016) The forgotten Irishman who named the 'United States of America' "According to the NY Historical Society, Stephen Moylan was the man responsible for the earliest documented use of the phrase 'United States of America'. But who was Stephen Moylan?" IrishCentral.com
^""To the inhabitants of Virginia", by A PLANTER. Dixon and Hunter's. April 6, 1776, Williamsburg, Virginia. Letter is also included in Peter Force's American Archives". The Virginia Gazette. 5 (1287). Archived from the original on December 19, 2014.
^Fernando Operé (2008). Indian Captivity in Spanish America: Frontier Narratives. University of Virginia Press. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-8139-2587-5.
^"Not So Fast, Jamestown: St. Augustine Was Here First". NPR.org. February 28, 2015. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
^Christine Marie Petto (2007). When France Was King of Cartography: The Patronage and Production of Maps in Early Modern France. Lexington Books. p. 125. ISBN 978-0-7391-6247-7.
^James E. Seelye Jr.; Shawn Selby (2018). Shaping North America: From Exploration to the American Revolution [3 volumes]. ABC-CLIO. p. 344. ISBN 978-1-4408-3669-5.
^Robert Neelly Bellah; Richard Madsen; William M. Sullivan; Ann Swidler; Steven M. Tipton (1985). Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life. University of California Press. p. 220. ISBN 978-0-520-05388-5. OL7708974M.
^"The Cambridge encyclopedia of human paleopathology Archived February 8, 2016, at the Wayback Machine". Arthur C. Aufderheide, Conrado Rodríguez-Martín, Odin Langsjoen (1998). Cambridge University Press. p. 205. ISBN 978-0-521-55203-5
^Otis, James (1763). The Rights of the British Colonies Asserted and Proved. ISBN 9780665526787.
^Humphrey, Carol Sue (2003). The Revolutionary Era: Primary Documents on Events from 1776 To 1800. Greenwood Publishing. pp. 8–10. ISBN 978-0-313-32083-5.
^ abFabian Young, Alfred; Nash, Gary B.; Raphael, Ray (2011). Revolutionary Founders: Rebels, Radicals, and Reformers in the Making of the Nation. Random House Digital. pp. 4–7. ISBN 978-0-307-27110-5.
^Wait, Eugene M. (1999). America and the War of 1812. Nova Publishers. p. 78. ISBN 978-1-56072-644-9.
^Clark, Mary Ann (May 2012). Then We'll Sing a New Song: African Influences on America's Religious Landscape. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 47. ISBN 978-1-4422-0881-0.
^Heinemann, Ronald L., et al., Old Dominion, New Commonwealth: a history of Virginia 1607–2007, 2007 ISBN 978-0-8139-2609-4, p. 197
^ abCarlisle, Rodney P.; Golson, J. Geoffrey (2007). Manifest Destiny and the Expansion of America. Turning Points in History Series. ABC-CLIO. p. 238. ISBN 978-1-85109-833-0.
^Billington, Ray Allen; Ridge, Martin (2001). Westward Expansion: A History of the American Frontier. UNM Press. p. 22. ISBN 978-0-8263-1981-4.
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