How did each state get its current boundary?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dana Fillhart, Nov 25, 2001.

  1. Dana Fillhart

    Dana Fillhart Supporting Actor

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    I'm curious about this, especially the original 13 colonies. I think Delaware was originally part of Pennsylvania, for example. Having grown up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, I look at its shape, and I have to wonder, how in the world did it acquire the eastern portion it did? Wouldn't it have made more sense (aesthetic sense, anyway) for the whole DelMarVa peninsula to have formed its own state? (Yeah, I've seen the bumper stickers around there that say "Secession Now!" [​IMG]) I think it's funny to look at a state map of Virginia, and see this tiny little stretch of land that looks like it's sticking out in the middle of the ocean; I believe there was probably some kind of deal way back when to allow that state as much access to the valuable Chesapeake bay as Maryland had, but I'd like to know for sure.
    And how about Staten Island -- that body of land is physically much closer to New Jersey than New York, yet it resides completely within the New York boundary. And then there's Rhode Island, and what about Michigan? And then compare them to a lot of the western states, and see that their borders ignore natural boundaries and are very much straight lines. I understand that much of the east had to do with the allowances given to the settlers by the kings and queens of the lands from which those settlers had originated, but some of the boundaries here still don't make sense.
    Anybody care to enlighten me?
    Thanks!
     
  2. Wayne Bundrick

    Wayne Bundrick Cinematographer

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    I think you've described about as much as I know about it. The answer can be summed up in one word: politics. And there was a war or two involved as well, for example in Texas vs. Mexico and in Maine vs. Canada.
     
  3. McPaul

    McPaul Screenwriter

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    Maine vs. Canada??
    I don't remember this one...
    are we rewriting history here?
    I remember Canada vs US in 1812 was it?
    if it was Maine vs. Canada.... looks like Canada won that war with a blowout!! [​IMG] We took all this territory from Maine!! YEAH!!! [​IMG]
     
  4. Greg D

    Greg D Auditioning

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    Yeah, Delaware was once a part of PA. The "lower counties" never really considered themselves to be part of the original colony and were largely a nuisance to William Penn. Delaware's curved upper boundy was set as a 15 mile arc from the town of New Castle. It's the only curved boundry in the states.

    If you want good reading on the formation of the colonies, check out "A New World" by Author Quinn. It doesn't go into detail on how the boudries were set, but Quinn does an excellent job of capturing the odd quirks of some of the key players of the era. Often times reading it I found myslef laughing out loud. It's rare to find history book so informative and entertaining as this one.
     
  5. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    My history teacher, Gene Davis, is a legend here in Pikeville, KY. He's one of those older gentlemen who taught history by telling you about his life experiences. God bless that man.

    Anyway, he came up with this interesting point about the state of West Virginia. Technically and lawfully speaking, it's an illegal state. What's the logic? Well, in the United States Constitution, you're not allowed to create states out of existing ones. What is now known as West Virginia used to be part of the whole of Virginia. West Virginia was created post-Constitution.

    Thought it was an interesting point and story. Of course, by that logic, could you commit any crime you wanted in West Virginia and not be prosecuted for it? Heh, heh, heh..... I've always wanted to drive like I was on the autobahn......
     
  6. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    Dome,

    Actually that's not quite right. Article IV section 3 paragraph 1 states "...no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress." So it's OK to partition states to make new ones if everyone agrees. The problem with West Virginia is that it took place during the Civil War and the rest of Virginia was in rebellion. I don't know if Virginia had to ratify West Virginia's statehood after the war as part of re-admittance to the Union. But technically Virginia was not part of the United States at the time so perhaps it was OK even without Virginia's later concurrence.

    I want California to break into 5 states so we get 8 new Senators. A state with 35 MILLION people is unreasonable in our form of government. We're bigger than Canada.
     
  7. Michael Warner

    Michael Warner Supporting Actor

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    Michigan came to blows with Ohio over Toledo back before either one was a state. The Feds gave Toledo to Ohio and as a consolation prize Michigan was given the Upper Peninsula which really should have been part of Wisconsin. No offense to anyone from Toledo but I think we got the better end of the deal.
     
  8. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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  9. Wayne Bundrick

    Wayne Bundrick Cinematographer

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  10. Graeme Clark

    Graeme Clark Cinematographer

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    That doesn't really count as a war then does it?
     
  11. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I think there should be at least one round state.
     

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