Society

Which US States Are Named After Rivers?

15 US states are named after one of the major rivers flowing through them, such as Colorado with its namesake Colorado River.

15. Ohio -

The state of Ohio is located in the Great Lakes Region of the United States. Geographically, it is an eastern state, although culturally it is often considered midwest. This state gets its name from the Ohio River. This river briefly runs northwest before turning southwest. Its 981 miles create the southern border of Ohio.

14. Mississippi -

Mississippi is located in the southeastern region of the US and shares a border with the Gulf of Mexico. This state was named after the Mississippi River, the principal contributor to the largest water drainage system in North America. It runs 2,320 miles from north to south before emptying into the Gulf of Mexico.

13. Wisconsin -

Wisconsin is located within the Great Lakes region in the north central part of the US. Its name is derived from the Wisconsin River which flows southwest through the center of the state. It runs 430 miles before eventually emptying into the Mississippi River at the Wisconsin-Iowa border.

12. Missouri -

The state of Missouri is found in the midwestern region of the country. It was named after the Missouri River which was named after a local indigenous tribe. The river covers 2,341 miles, making it the fourth longest in the US. It begins in Montana and runs southeast until it drains into the Mississippi River north of St. Louis.

11. Kentucky -

Kentucky is considered a southeastern state and was named after the Kentucky River. This river has a length of 259 miles. It begins in Kentucky, running northwest until it meets with the Ohio River at the Kentucky-Indiana border.

10. Illinois -

Illinois is a midwestern state that got its name from the 273-mile long Illinois River. This waterway flows southwest through the state. It empties into the Mississippi River at the Missouri-Illinois border.

9. Delaware -

The state of Delaware is located in the Mid-Atlantic region, also known as the northeast. Its name is derived from the Delaware River which begins in New York state. From there, it runs south and creates the border between Pennsylvania and New Jersey. After 301 miles, it empties into the Delaware Bay.

8. Iowa -

The midwestern state of Iowa was named for the Iowa River. This river flows for 323 miles beginning in the north central part of the state. It heads southeast and empties into the Mississippi River at the border between Iowa and Illinois.

7. Connecticut -

Connecticut is located in the northeastern region of the US, specifically, in New England. Its name comes from the Connecticut River, which begins in New Hampshire near the border with Canada. It runs south for 406 miles and drains into the Long Island Sound. It is the longest river in New England.

6. Minnesota -

Minnesota is a midwestern state that shares a border with Canada. Its name is derived from the Minnesota River which begins in the state. It heads southeast in direction and its length reaches 370 miles. It empties into the Mississippi River near the city of St. Paul.

5. Arkansas -

The state of Arkansas is located in the southeastern region, near Texas. It was named after the prominent Arkansas River. This river has a length of 1,469 miles. Along its course, the Arkansas River runs east and southeast beginning in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. It passes through 4 states before flowing into the Mississippi River.

4. Tennessee -

Tennessee is a southeastern state that shares a border with Kentucky. Its name comes from the Tennessee River, which cuts the state into 3 areas. This 651.8-mile river begins in the east central part of the state. It heads southeast into Alabama and then changes course toward the north, running through Tennessee and Kentucky. It empties into the Ohio River.

3. Kansas -

Kansas is centrally located in the middle of the midwestern region of the country. It is named for the Kansas River, which begins in the eastern part of the state. It flows in an east-northeast direction for 148 miles before meeting the Missouri River in Kansas City.

2. Colorado -

Colorado is considered a western state. It was named after the Colorado River, which comes from the Spanish word for “red colored” in reference to its red silt. This impressive river runs a course of 1,450 miles. It crosses through 5 states in a southwest direction and empties into the Gulf of California in Mexico.

1. Alabama -

The state of Alabama is located in the southeastern region of the US. Its name comes from the nearby Alabama River. This river begins in Alabama, running southwest for 318 miles. It drains into the Mobile River just north of the city of Mobile.

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