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The UNITED STATES of AMERICA







Population
Geography
Government
History
Traditions
Fun stuff

Links













POPULATION
296 million inhabitants (January 2005 Census)

DENSITY
30.25 inhabitants per sq km (square kilometres)

SURFACE AREA

9,629,091 sq km (square kilometres)

CAPITAL CITY - Washington DC
(572,859 inhabitants)
Airports :
Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA)

MAJOR CITIES

New York City (NY) - Los Angeles (CA) - Chicago (IL) - Houston (TX)
Philadelphia (PA) - Phoenix (AZ) -
San Diego (CA) - Dallas (TX)
Detroit (MI) - San Antonio (TX)


GEOGRAPHY
50 states
MAPS :
50 states
50 state capitals

USA and states
rivers
time zones

MOTTO
"E Pluribus Unum" (this popular phrase means : out of many, one)
"In God We Trust"

FLAG
"The Stars and Stripes" or "Old Glory"

Meaning :
The flag of the United States features 13 equal horizontal stripes of red (top and bottom) alternating with white. There is a blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side corner bearing 50 small, white, five-pointed stars.
The 50 stars represent the 50 states, the 13 stripes represent the 13 original colonies. map

NATIONAL ANTHEM
"The Star-Spangled Banner"

NATIONAL EMBLEM
"The Bald Eagle" (species unique to north America)

NATIONAL HOLIDAY
July 4th (Independence Day)
It commemorates the 1776 independence from Great Britain


EDU
CATION
The American education system requires that students complete 12 years of primary and secondary education prior to attending university or college.
American children start school at the age of 5 years.
The first year at school is called KINDERGARTEN.
The second year at school is considered the first year of primary school and is referred to as first GRADE. Primary school most commonly consists of five years of education, referred to as first through fifth grades.
Secondary school most commonly consists of a total of seven years, referred to as sixth through twelfth grades. The ninth through twelfth grades are most commonly referred to as HIGH SCHOOL. Upon completion of twelfth grade, American students are awarded a certificate called the high school DOPLOMA.
Students who have completed high school and would like to attend COLLEGE or UNIVERSITY must attend what is referred to as an UNDERGRADUATE school. These are schools that offer either a two-year degree (called an associate degree) or a four-year degree (called a bachelor’s degree) in a specific course of study.
Students who have obtained a bachelor’s degree can continue their education by pursuing one of two types of degrees. The first is a master’s degree. This is usually a two-year degree that is highly specialized in a specific field.


On September 8, 1892 a Boston-based youth magazine "The Youth's Companion" published a 22-word recitation for school children to use during planned activities the following month to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Columbus' discovery of America. Under the title "The Pledge to the Flag", the composition was the earliest version of what we now know as the PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE.

I pledge allegiance to my Flag,
and to the Republic for which it stands:
one Nation indivisible,
With Liberty and Justice for all.
(1892)

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.
(1954 and still today)

ECONOMY
AGRICULTURE
worldatlas

CURRENCY
The Dollar
Exchange rate online

GOVERNMENT
The US is a Federal system. This means that power is divided between a central/national government and the States.
The national government is referred to as the Federal Government.

The Federal Government has three branches/arms:
> Legislative Branch (House of Representatives - Senate)
> Executive Branch (The President - The Cabinet)
> Judicial Branch (The Supreme Court - Other Federal Courts)

The idea of separating powers was designed to restrict governmental power and prevent its abuse. Wherever possible, the Founding Fathers (*) built a system of "checks and balances" into the Constitution so that no one part of the government could supplant the other.

The structure of American government is really a mosaic composed of thousands of interlocking units. In addition to the federal government, there are 50 state governments and the government of the District of Columbia, and further down the ladder are still smaller units that govern counties, cities, towns and villages, to name a few.

(*) Founding Fathers : general name for male American patriots during the Revolutionary War, especially the signers of the Declaration of Independence and those who drafted the Constitution. John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington were all Founding Fathers.

CONSTITUTION
Full TEXT

PRESIDENT
Elected for 4 years - can be re-elected once
(The 22nd amendment to the Constitution limits presidents to no more than two terms)

Current President of the USA : George W. Bush (Republican)
Presidents from G. Washington to G. W. Bush photo gallery
Bush Administration who's who


POLITICAL PARTIES
Two main political parties today : Democrats - Republicans

ELECTIONS
2004 Campaign : John Kerry (Dem.) Vs. George W. Bush (Rep.)

RELIGION
One of the first permanent settlements in what became the North American colonies was founded by English Puritans, Calvinists who had been outsiders in their homeland, where the Church of England was established. So Protestants were the dominant religion in the early days.

Today America is one of the most diverse religious societies in the world.
In 1990 :
Protestants of all denominations numbered 140 million
Catholics : 62 million
Jews : 5 million
The Islamic faith also has 5 million U.S. adherents
It is estimated that the number of mosques in the United States -- today,


HISTORY
History of the USA wikipedia.org
Periods of time
History timeline factmonster.com

TRADITIONS
Thanksgiving Thanksgiving onyourmarks page
Halloween Halloween onyourmarks page

NATIONAL PARKS
Grand Canyon
Bryce Canyon
Arches

National Park Service (all parks & more)

FUN STUFF
America's story history, states, famous Americans...


SEL
ECTION of LINKS
The USA in brief (pdf document) (2 pages)
worldatlas.com
usembassy
(Frequently Asked Questions)
whitehouse.gov
answers.com
(search engine)

Thanksgiving


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