The United States of America (USA), known as the United States (US) or America, is a federal constitutional republic in North America. America is the most powerful and considered the most free nation on the planet, though many civil liberties had been curtailed with the signing of the USA Patriot Act by George W. Bush.
The United States, originally 13 colonies of Great Britain for over 200 years, was founded on the Declaration of Independence, declaring freedom and independence from Great Britain on July 4, 1776, a year after the war started on April 19, 1775 in Lexington, Massachusetts. In 1781, the British Army, surrounded by land by the American Continental Army and by the French Navy by sea, surrendered. The Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783, ending the American Revolutionary War with the United States achieving independence.
The United States was governed by the Articles of Confederation from 1781 to 1789. Due to the weakness of the government caused by the Articles, they were replaced by the stronger current Constitution in 1789. George Washington, the commanding general of the Continental Army during the war, became the first President of the United States. America would later declare war on Britain again in the War of 1812.
In 1803, the United States purchased the Louisiana Territory from France, doubling the size of the country. In 1841, William Henry Harrison died of pneumonia after only serving a month as President, making his administration the shortest in American history and being the first president to die in office.
In 1850, President Zachary Taylor died in office after a year.
In 1860, after Republican Abraham Lincoln was elected President, South Carolina seceded from the Union. This led to other states seceding from the Union, forming the Confederate States of America. On April 12, 1861, the Confederate military fired on Fort Sumter, starting the Civil War. The South was eventually crushed by the North and forced back into the Union in 1865, after Lincoln was assassinated.
In 1881, President James Garfield, a veteran of the Civil War, was assassinated.
During World War I, President Woodrow Wilson managed to keep the US neutral and out of the war. However, prompted by attacks on US citizens by the German Empire (via U-boat attacks on British ocean liners) and German-prompted Mexican rebel attacks on the US borders, the US declared war on Germany in 1917. With American reinforcements the exhausted Allies won the war.
President Warren Harding died of disease in 1923.
President Franklin Roosevelt keep the US neutral during the first two years of World War II. On December 7, 1941, the naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. The next day, the US declared war on Japan. On December 10, Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy declared war on the US, who declared war on them. The US won against the three Axis countries. In August 1945, the US dropped two atomic bombs on Japan, the only time nuclear weapons were used in war.
On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated.
The United States also fought in undeclared wars in Korea and Vietnam to stop communism from spreading. While the US saved South Korea from being overrun by the North, the US was forced to pull out of Vietnam by the demand of American citizens.
On September 11, 2001, the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda hijacked four American airliners. Two were flown into the World Trade Center, another hit the Pentagon. The fourth was to crash into Washington DC but crashed after the passengers attempted to take down the hijackers. 2,996 lives were lost and the Twin Towers were destroyed.
- 35) John F. Kennedy
- 36) Lyndon B. Johnson
- 43) George W. Bush
- 44) Barack Obama
- 2009 - Present
(13) = original 13 colonies/states
(CSA)= state of the Confederate States
- Alabama (CSA)
- Arkansas (CSA)
- Connecticut (13)
- Delaware (13)
- Florida (CSA)
- Georgia (13, CSA)
- Louisiana (CSA)
- Maine (13, as part of Massachusetts)
- Maryland (13)
- Massachusetts (13)
- Mississippi (CSA)
- New Hampshire (13)
- New Jersey (13)
- New Mexico
- New York (13)
- North Carolina (13, CSA)
- North Dakota
- Pennsylvania (13)
- Rhode Island (13)
- South Carolina (13, CSA)
- South Dakota
- Tennessee (CSA)
- Texas (CSA)
- Virginia (13, CSA)
- West Virginia