United States

Article

August 11, 2022

United States of America — abbreviated USA (eng. United States of America — abbreviated USA), sometimes abbreviated United States — SD (eng. United States — US) or just America (eng. America), is a federal constitutional republic consisting of fifty states and one federal district. The country mainly stretches in the central part of North America, where, between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, there are forty-eight federal states and the federal district with the capital Washington. This continental part borders Canada in the north, and Mexico in the south. The federal state of Alaska is located in the northwest of the continent and borders Canada to the east and the Russian Federation to the west, across the Bering Strait, while the federal state of Hawaii is located in the Pacific Ocean. The United States also owns several island territories scattered throughout the Caribbean and Pacific. With 9.83 million km² and over 300 million inhabitants, the United States is the third largest country in the world by total area, and the third largest by land area and population. The United States is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world, a result of mass immigration from many countries. The US economy is the largest national economy in the world, with a nominal gross domestic product of $13 trillion in 2006 (over 25.5% of total world gross product). The nation was founded by 13 former colonies of Great Britain that spread along the Atlantic coast. Declaring themselves "states" on July 4, 1776, they adopted the Declaration of Independence. The rebel states defeated Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War, the first successful war for independence by a colony. On September 17, 1787, the Federal Convention adopted the current Constitution of the United States, and by ratifying it the following year, the states became parts of a single republic. The Bill of Rights, consisting of ten constitutional amendments, was ratified in 1791. In the 19th century, the US appropriated territories that belonged to France, Spain, Great Britain, Mexico, and the Russian Empire, and annexed the Republic of Texas and the Republic of Hawaii. Disputes between the agrarian South and the industrial North over states' rights and the expansion of slavery led to the American Civil War during