List of States By Date of Admittance

The United States is made up of 50 states.
The United States is made up of 50 states.

The United States is made up of 50 states and several territories. The states share sovereignty with the federal government. All Americans are citizens of a respective state and the United States. Virginia, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Kentucky are officially referred to as commonwealths rather than states. The states are entitled to all power that is not granted to the federal government or prohibited by the constitution. Each of the fifty states has the executive, judicial, and legislative branches. Democratically elected representatives represent the state and the residents in Congress while an elected governor is the head of state. Before independence in 1776, the United States consisted of British colonies. The colonies revolted and sought to establish sovereignty. Although some colonies began self-governance earlier than others did, it was not until June 21, 1877, when New Hampshire joined the union as the 9th state that the colonies fulfilled the requirement to ratify the United States Constitution.

The Thirteen Colonies

The "Thirteen Colonies" refer to the British colonies located in the Atlantic coast of North America between the 17th and 18th centuries. The colonies united, revolted against the British colonial administration, and declared independence in 1776 as the first states of the United States of America. The colonies shared similar constitutional, political, and legal systems. After independence, the colonies became states and began self-governance. The union formulated a constitution that had to be ratified by at least nine states to be adopted. On June 21, 1788, New Hampshire ratified the proposed constitution as the ninth state fulfilling the requirement. The constitution provided a platform for a unified United States. On December 7, 1787, Delaware had ratified the constitution as the first state of the United States. Twelve days later Pennsylvania was admitted. On December 18, 1787, New Jersey became the third and final state to be admitted in 1787. In 1788, eight more states were admitted including New Hampshire. Soon after, several other states ratified the constitution and became members. In the 20th century, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, Alaska, and Hawaii were admitted.

Admission of New States

Article IV, Section 3 grants Congress the mandate to admit new states to the union. However, the constitution bars the formation of new states within the jurisdiction of the existing states and the merger of states without the consent of the legislatures of the respective states and Congress. Each new state is admitted on an equal footing with the existing states. It is impossible to secede from the union because the constitution does not provide guidelines on how to so. A secession can only occur is the constitution is amended and a close to allow a state to withdraw from the union is added. Between 1860 and 1861, eleven southern states declared independence from the United States and merged to form the Confederate States of America. The move triggered the American Civil War that ended after the states withdrew the secession and rejoined the Union.

List of States By Date of Admittance

Rank´╗┐StateDate of Admittance
1DelawareDecember 7, 1787
2PennsylvaniaDecember 12, 1787
3New JerseyDecember 18, 1787
4Georgia January 2, 1788
5ConnecticutJanuary 9, 1788
6MassachusettsFebruary 6, 1788
7MarylandApril 28, 1788
8South CarolinaMay 23, 1788
9New HampshireJune 21, 1788
10VirginiaJune 25, 1788
11New York July 26, 1788
12North CarolinaNovember 21, 1789
13Rhode IslandMay 29, 1790
14VermontMarch 4, 1791
15KentuckyJune 1, 1792
16TennesseeJune 1, 1796
17OhioMarch 1, 1803
18LouisianaApril 30, 1812
19IndianaDecember 11, 1816
20Mississippi December 10, 1817
21IllinoisDecember 3, 1818
22AlabamaDecember 14, 819
23MaineMarch 15, 1820
24MissouriAugust 10, 1821
25ArkansasJune 15, 1836
26MichiganJanuary 26, 1837
27FloridaMarch 3, 1845
28TexasDecember 29, 1845
29IowaDecember 28, 1846
30WisconsinMay 29, 1848
31CaliforniaSeptember 9, 1850
32MinnesotaMay 11, 1858
33OregonFebruary 14, 1859
34KansasJanuary 29, 1861
35West VirginiaJune 20, 1863
36NevadaOctober 31, 1864
37NebraskaMarch 1, 1867
38ColoradoAugust 1, 1876
39North DakotaNovember 2, 1889
40Soth DakotaNovember 2, 1889
41MontanaNovember 8, 1889
42WashingtonNovember 11, 1889
43IdahoJuly 3, 1890
44WyomingJuly 10, 1890
45UtahJanuary 4, 1896
46OklahomaNovember 16, 1907
47New MexicoJanuary 6, 1912
48ArizonaFebruary 14, 1912
49AlaskaJanuary 43, 1959
50HawaiiAugust 21, 1959

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