Introducing The United States Social Science McFarland
Physical Geographyof the United States Landforms
Coastal Plains • The Coastal Plains extend from New York to the border with Mexico along the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico.
Piedmont • The Piedmont is a rolling plateau region, inland from the Coastal Plain that begins in New Jersey and stretches to Alabama.
Appalachian Mountains • The Appalachian Mountains extend from Maine to Alabama,
Interior Plains • The Interior Plains are located between the Appalachian Mountains and the Rocky Mountains and extend from Canada to Mexico.
Rocky Mountains • The Rocky Mountains extend from Canada to New Mexico and from the Great Plains westward to the Intermountain Region.
Intermountain Region • The Intermountain Region is between the Rocky Mountains on the east and the Cascade and Sierra Nevada ranges on the west.
Pacific Coast Region • The Pacific Coast Region is characterized by two major mountain ranges and a series of valleys between the mountains. • The Sierra Nevada and Cascade ranges are on the eastern side. • Alaska and Hawaii are the two westernmost states. • Part of the Pacific “Ring of Fire” with active volcanoes and earthquake faults.
Climate • The United States has 11 climate types, the greatest variety of any nation in the world.
Early Settlements • Native Americans were the first inhabitants of North America. • The Vikings were the first Europeans to arrive (1100A.D.). • The Spanish arrived about 500 years ago. • The French made claims to the interior of North America.
Early Settlements(Cont.) • The British became a major influence in the nation’s early history establishing the 13 colonies. • Millions of Africans were brought to the U.S. and sold as slaves. • After independence, many immigrants came from Europe. • By the mid-1800’s, the U.S. stretched from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
Population Diversity • The U.S. ranks 3rd in world population, but comprises less than 5 percent of the world’s population. • The U.S. is predominantly Christian in religion.
Population Diversity(Cont.) • European American – 75% • African American – 12% • Hispanic (Latino) – 9% • Asian – 3% • Native American – 1%
Population Distribution • Today, most of the population is along the East Coast and in California. • As the nation developed into a technological society, many people have moved to the Sunbelt states (California, Texas, Florida, Arizona). • The U.S. is highly urbanized.