Saturday, 1 February 2014

States of America Quiz

The States of America always make good quiz questions and in this article I will show you how I make interesting questions that I use in my pub quizzes. First I'm going to give you some facts that you can use to make original quiz questions and then I'm going to finish off with some great fun questions about the actual states names.

The States of America

Everybody knows that there are 50 states that share sovereignty with the United States federal government.
Let's begin with the history of how the states came into existence and how they evolved over time.

Did you know America was given the name by a German map maker? Back in 1507 Martin Waldseemüller created a map of the world on which he named the great lands of the Western Hemisphere "America" after the Italian explorer and navigator Amerigo Vespucci.

The states started out with 13 British colonies, the first of which was Virginia founded in 1607 and lastly by Georgia in 1733. The colonies joined together to declare independence in 1776.

Quiz Facts
The state of Virginia was named after Queen Elizabeth I, the virgin queen.
Georgia was named after King George II

The term United States of America was first coined in 1776 when Thomas Jefferson included the phrase in all capital letters in the heading of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence.

The Original 13 States of America

Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island.

Delaware was given the name held as a title by Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, the Governor of Virginia from 1610 until 1618. At that time the area was considered to be part of the Virginia colony.

Pennsylvania  was named after William Penn who founded a colony there for the religious freedom of Quakers, and named it after his family "Penn" and the "woods" (from Latin) sylvania.

New Jersey was named by James, brother of King Charles II of England, who named the colony New Jersey to honour Sir George Carteret, who had been the Governor of Jersey, a British island in the English Channel.

Connecticut gets it's name from the Connecticut River which got its name from the Mohican Indian word "quonehtacut", which means "the place of the long tidal river."

Massachusetts got its name from the Massachusetts Bay which was given its name by the Pilgrim Fathers who founded the Plymouth Colony in 1620. They named the Bay after the Algonquian Indians whose name was derived from mass-adchu-seuck or 'people from the big hill'.

Maryland is named in honour of Henrietta Maria of France, wife of Charles I of England. It was also the capital of United States of America from 1783 to 1784.

North and South Carolina were named in honour of King Charles l. Carolus is Latin for Charles. The nickname for South Carolina is the Palmetto State.

New Hampshire got it's name from Captain John Mason and was named after the English county of Hampshire. John Mason was one of the founders of Portsmouth in 1630.

New York got its name from the English Duke of York and Albany (and the brother of England's King Charles II) in 1664 when the region was originally called "New Amsterdam" by the Dutch settlers.

Rhode Island got its name from the Dutch explorer Adriaen Block, there in 1635, who called it 'Roodt Eylandt.' The words mean red island and was in reference to the red clay that was prominent and which surrounded the shoreline.

Obviously if I were to list all 50 states like this it would take me days so let's move on to some great facts that you can use as quiz questions.

50 States of America

Here are all 50 states followed by the two letter abbreviation used in the post code, zip code, the year it became a state and last but not least the capital city of each state. Please note that over half of the capital cities of the 50 States of America are not the most populated.

Alabama         AL     1819     Montgomery
Alaska         AK     1959     Juneau
Arizona         AZ     1912     Phoenix
Arkansas     AR     1836     Little Rock
California     CA     1850     Sacramento
Colorado         CO     1876     Denver
Connecticut     CT     1788     Hartford
Delaware     DE     1787     Dover
Florida         FL     1845     Tallahassee
Georgia         GA     1788     Atlanta
Hawaii         HI     1959     Honolulu
Idaho         ID     1890     Boise
Illinois         IL     1818     Springfield
Indiana         IN     1816     Indianapolis
Iowa         IA     1846     Des Moines
Kansas         KS     1861     Topeka
Kentucky     KY     1792     Frankfort
Louisiana     LA     1812     Baton Rouge
Maine         ME     1820     Augusta
Maryland     MD     1788     Annapolis
Massachusetts     MA     1788     Boston
Michigan     MI     1837     Lansing
Minnesota     MN     1858     Saint Paul
Mississippi     MS     1817     Jackson
Missouri         MO     1821     Jefferson City
Montana         MT     1889     Helena
Nebraska     NE     1867     Lincoln
Nevada         NV     1864     Carson City
New Hampshire     NH     1788     Concord
New Jersey     NJ     1787     Trenton
New Mexico     NM     1912     Santa Fe
New York     NY     1788     Albany
North Carolina     NC     1789     Raleigh
North Dakota     ND     1889     Bismark
Ohio         OH     1803     Columbus
Oklahoma     OK     1907      Oklahoma City
Oregon         OR     1859     Salem
Pennsylvania     PA     1787     Harrisburg
Rhode Island     RI     1790     Providence
South Carolina     SC     1788     Columbia
South Dakota     SD     1889     Pierre
Tennessee     TN     1796      Nashville
Texas         TX     1845     Austin
Utah         UT     1896     Salt Lake City
Vermont         VT     1791     Montpelier
Virginia         VA     1788     Richmond
Washington     WA     1889     Olympia
West Virginia     WV     1863     Charleston
Wisconsin     WI     1848     Madison
Wyoming     WY     1890     Cheyenne

Using the list above and being creative you can come up with such quiz questions as these..

 States of America Quiz

The abbreviation NC is the two letter code for which American State?
What is the capital city of Texas?
Santa Fe is the capital city of which U.S. state?
Which is the only U.S. state that begins with the letter U?
In what year did Hawaii become a U.S. state?
There are 4 U.S. states that end with the letter O, can you name them?
Which mythical bird is the state capital of Arizona?
What have Illinois and The Simpsons got in common?
What connects ancient Greece with Washington state?
Did Ohio become a state in the 18th or 19th century?
Can you name the 4 U.S. states that begin with "New"?
Can you spell Massachusetts?

All the states have nicknames too, another great source of quiz questions!

State Nicknames - Nicknames of U.S. States

The Yellowhammer State
The Cotton State
The Heart of Dixie

The Last Frontier

The Grand Canyon State

The Natural State

The Golden State

The Centennial State

The Constitution State

The First State

The Sunshine State

The Peach State

The Aloha State

The Gem State

The Prairie State

The Hoosier State

The Hawkeye State

The Sunflower State

The Bluegrass State

The Pelican State

The Pine Tree State

The Old Line State

The Bay State

The Great Lakes State

The North Star State

The Magnolia State

The Show Me State

The Treasure State

The Cornhusker State

The Silver State

New Hampshire
The Granite State

New Jersey
The Garden State

New Mexico
The Land of Enchantment

New York
The Empire State

North Carolina
The Tar Heel State

North Dakota
The Peace Garden State

The Buckeye State

The Sooner State

The Beaver State

The Keystone State

Rhode Island
The Ocean State

South Carolina
The Palmetto State

South Dakota
Mount Rushmore State

The Volunteer State

The Lone Star State

The Beehive State

The Green Mountain State

Old Dominion

The Evergreen State

West Virginia
The Mountain State

The Badger State

The Equality or Cowboy State

Good quiz questions are creative quiz questions. Don't just ask, "which state is known as the mountain state?"
Try these I just made up from the list above.

U.S. State Nicknames Quiz

Which states nickname is a type of hairstyle?
Which states nickname is also a famous skyscraper?
What fruit is found in Georgia's nickname?
Which states nickname is a type of rock?
Which states nickname means affection, peace, compassion and mercy?
How many states nicknames are named after plants?

So there you have it, if you study this article you can very easily come up with a hundred quiz questions on one topic and what makes this such a great topic is that most people pride themselves in being knowledgeable about the United States of America!

This article was written by Martin the quiz master of the UK's best and most professional fun quiz website

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