Arizona (/ˈɑritsonɑ/ or /ˈɑritsoːnɑ/; English /ˌærɪˈzoʊnə/) is the 48th state annexed to the United States. The state's neighbors are Mexico to the south, New Mexico, Utah, Nevada and California. The largest cities are Phoenix, Tucson, and Mesa; other well-known places are Yuma and Flagstaff. In addition to the Grand Canyon, the state has several other national parks, monuments and Indian reservations. The state's population in 2014 was approximately 6.7 million.
The state's neighbors are Mexico to the south, New Mexico to the east, Utah to the north, Nevada and California to the west. The Colorado Plateau in the north forms two-fifths of the state. The Colorado River that flows through it has carved the Grand Canyon in the northwestern part of the state, and other sharp-edged river valleys cut through the highlands. There are also mountains in the highlands, the highest of which is Humphrey's Peak 3,850 meters above sea level. Rock formations shaped by erosion can be seen in Monument Valley on the Utah border. The southern part of the state is divided by northwest-southeast oriented mountain ranges, with fertile valleys in between. Where sufficient water is available, these valleys are well suited for growing vegetables. About half of Arizona is semi-desert, a third is desert, and the rest is humid. Winters are cold in the highlands of Colorado, with typically 250-375 mm of rain per year. In the southern part of the state, the rain comes in conjunction with severe thunderstorms in the summer months, when hot and humid air flows there from the Gulf of Mexico. The hottest month of the year is July, when the average high temperature in Phoenix is about 41 degrees. Even in the coolest months, January and February, the average low is above +7 degrees there. In Flagstaff, the average high in July is 27 degrees, and the average low in December and January is -8 degrees. Arizona has three national parks: Grand Canyon National Park, Petrified Forest National Park, and Saguaro National Park.
The first signs of human settlement in Arizona have been found more than 12,000 years ago. By 500 AD, agricultural cultures had developed in the Arizona region: the Anasazi culture flourished in the northeastern parts of the state, the Mogollon culture in the eastern mountain region, and the Hohokam culture in the central and southern parts of the state. The drought of the 13th century drove prehistoric cultures into decline. Arizona's written history began with Spanish explorers from Mexico. Franciscan Marcos de Niza made a discovery trip to the area in 1539. Coronado's discovery trip to the area took place in 1540–1542. At that time in Arizona lived Indians from three different language families; the oldest of the groups was the Hopi Indians descended from the Anasazi. The first explorers were also followed by missionaries who established mission stations in Arizona. Eusebio Kino, who came to the area in 1692, founded, among other things, the mission station of San Xavier del Bac near present-day Tucson. Tubac, on the other hand, was Arizona's first significant settlement, founded by the Spanish in 1752 as an outpost. Eusebio Kino's mission created the Pimeria Alta region with its population centers, which consisted of the northern part of present-day Sonora and the southern part of present-day Arizona. Southern Arizona was part of the New Navarre province of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, whose immigrant population consisted mainly of Basques and Navarrese. The region was also known as the Sonora-Sinaloa province.
Northern Arizona, or most of what would become Arizona, was part of the Californian Province of New Spain from 1767 to 1804, until it became part of Alta California (Upper California). The inhabitants of the area were descendants of immigrants and mestizos who came from Spain. In 1821, Mexico became independent and what is now northern Arizona became part of the territory of Alta California and southern Arizona became part of the state of Sonora-Sinaloa.
In the Mexican-American War of 1847-1848, Mexico lost