Actual Number of States in the United States of America: 50 States
The United States of America (USA) sometimes shortened as United States (U.S.) or just America is composed of 50 states and a federal district (Washington, D.C). The USA also has a number of unincorporated territories. These include islands such as Puerto Rico, Guam, and American Samoa to name a few. The states are represented as stars on the flag. The last state (50) to be added was Hawaii in 1959.
Remembering that the US has 51 or 52 states is a common Mandela Effect, seemingly from people even living in the US, although if the responses are to be believed online, it appears as though this misconception is generally coming from non-US residents. I first heard about about it on the Mandela Effect website.
Many of these people seem to think that Washington, D.C. might be a state (51) rather than a separate district, while others may assume one of the territories is a state such as Puerto Rico. Sometimes both of these are believed, equalling the 52 states.
51 seems correct to me. I’m not sure why or where I started to believe this, or even if I did at all. Perhaps the article itself changed my memory based on lack of knowledge. It seems to me that I have a fuzzy memory of 51, but perhaps because of some of the reasons I explain in the possible explanations.
The 51st state is a common phrase used in politics that is applied to external territories as well as parts of existing states which would be admitted as separate states. These include the unincorporated territories as well as Washington D.C. There’s even a version of the flag showing a 51st star. If you perform Google searches of things such as “Puerto Rico 51st state” or “Washington D.C. 51st state” you will get tons of news article talking about a potential inclusion of those two examples as the 51st state.
50 appears to be a more strict, rounded number. It almost seems to be too perfect for something so complex as the number of states. Our brains automatically thinks that this nice round number simply cannot be correct, so we go to the next logical step of 51. For example, would you believe there is 200 different countries in the world? Or would it seem more correct if there was 201, or 202, or maybe even 203? As of writing there is actually 196 countries in the world, this was just an example of a possible effect happening.
Alaska and Hawaii, two official states are disconnected from the main American landmass. This factoid may be a source of the confusion in assuming that the disconnected states are the two extra instead of included in the 50.
There is 52 cards in a deck of cards. This fact may have been learned while growing up or studying, perhaps around the same time you learned that there is 50 states. Perhaps these memories are getting reversed or replacing one another.
118 thoughts on “51 or 52 States in the United States of America”
Officially there are 50 states, but there are jokes on how Texas will secede again and become its own country. Those are only jokes. There’s too much oil to for us to leave without some resistance from the rest of the US.
Puerto Rico doesn’t want to be a state unlike Hawaii and Alaska
Hawaii didn’t want to be a state either. Look it up.
Puerto Rico as actually voted to become a state. This vote happened in 2017 due to red tape and such it will probably not take effect in till 2020 at least. Also also a nor Hawaii chose to be a state in an.election. California is proposing a split into three states meaning that we may go to 52 official y before 51. And soon after go to 53
Just listening to Stephen kings (Richard bachman) the longest walk on audible. 41 seconds from the end of chapter 10 Ray garity says that “yeah the most funked up state in the 51” .
Would have thought a writer the standard of stephen king would know how many states there were at the time?
Only 50 states are there in USA officially.
Don’t forget Washington, DC (Washington, District of Columbia). Washington, DC is USA OFFICIALLY.
Don’t confused with the state: Washington, It supposed to be 51 states: Washington DC. It seems not happened for Washington, DC to become 51st state.
While Washington, DC, is an official US city, it is NOT in, nor is itself a state. This was done intentionally by the Founders, so that no state would have legal jurisdiction over the Federal District, and by extension, the Federal Government. It also was not a “city” until 1973, as it did not have a city government. It was overseen by “The Committee of the Whole”, a “committee” of the entire House of Representatives, which ruled as a massive city council for Washington, DC. This, as would be expected, proved to be unwieldy, and thus “home rule” was granted, and the DC City Council/Mayor was formed to take the place of the then present form of government.
Long story short – Washington, DC, was not and never has been intended to be a state. Yes, there are efforts to make it one, but that was not the intent.
The wolf is cunning with ulterior motives. laying in wait pretending to be a friend, gaining the confidence and being excepted as belonging. The wolf does not belong with the sheep. The sheep except the wolf. Game over man. game over. It was once written, but what was once written has now been written again. The conditioning to except evil as good and good as evil is being done as I speak. The ones that try to tell you your memory is wrong are the wolves. This isn’t cognitive dissonance man! this is a battle for your soul.
My input on this is that I do clearly remember 52 as do many other people: however, this may be a mistaken memory since if I was really from a different timeline or universe or what have you, I would also remember the names of those other states and how the geographical maps would look wrong to my eyes, and they don’t. I don’t recall the names “New Brunswick” or “New Scotia” like one writer suggested, nor do I remember any state shapes or the general US shape being different on a map. I memorized all the state names as part of a memory technique book, but there are no traces of any other state names in my mind. I DO remember the time when thought to myself: “50 States? That sounds wrong and just too simple”. But I don’t remember: “Hey, what’s changed about the map!” Or “What happended to such and such a place?” Get my point? We would expect these corollary experiences to happen if this was some sort of true Mandela effect. We would also remember something about what happened in those states, or what they were known for like food, flowers, music, cities, etc. And why do some people remember 51 States and some 52?
I am a very critical thinker, professionally trained Philospher, and believe there are many different kwaaazy truths being hid from the American people, e.g. Flat Earth, Hitler survived WWII, the fact that we didn’t go to the moon, ZOG, Atlantis, etc. But I spent a long time on each one of these and ended up changing my thinking from my previous traditional/establishment positions based on good, honest research and lots of uncomfortable facts. They are theories no doubt, but so are most of our beliefs–even if we claim to be ‘rational’ and ‘evidence-based’ thinkers. The world we know through sensory experience is very limited and we all rely on assumptions, inference, the opinions of trusted experts, faith, etc, for most of our worldview. This is basic epistemology. So trying to debunk possible other universes because ‘you can’t show me’ is really not clear thinking either. The new science on this stuff is scary.
And for God’s sake if you still trust Google/CIA as a reference then you need to wake up and drink more coffee…
But the Mandela Effect–however initially compelling–just isn’t cutting it for me so far. Convince me otherwise and I will change my mind.
What a laim ass explanation, didn’t buy it, sounds like you trying too much, actually it more like you trying to convince yourself while trying to convince us
I specifically remember that there are 52 states in the USA because I took a test and I remember the teacher kept telling us don’t forget to count Alaska and Hawaii which made it 52 states. Everyone else that keeps saying that it is 50 is mistaken and our history is being rewritten to change our memories. I used to think that, that was just some made up information trolling the internet but I am confident in my memory and no one can convince me that there are 50 states. Beware because your memory is being tampered with!
31) New Mexico
32) New York
33) North Carolina
Still not convinced? o.k
Delaware December 7, 1787
(ratified) Colony of Delaware[b]
2 Pennsylvania December 12, 1787
(ratified) Proprietary Province of Pennsylvania
3 New Jersey December 18, 1787
(ratified) Crown Colony of New Jersey
4 Georgia January 2, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of Georgia
5 Connecticut January 9, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of Connecticut
6 Massachusetts February 6, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of Massachusetts Bay
7 Maryland April 28, 1788
(ratified) Proprietary Province of Maryland
8 South Carolina May 23, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of South Carolina
9 New Hampshire June 21, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of New Hampshire
10 Virginia June 25, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony and Dominion of Virginia
11 New York July 26, 1788
(ratified) Crown Colony of New York
12 North Carolina November 21, 1789
(ratified) Crown Colony of North Carolina
13 Rhode Island May 29, 1790
(ratified) Crown Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
14 Vermont March 4, 1791
(admitted) Vermont Republic[c]
15 Kentucky June 1, 1792
(admitted) Virginia (nine counties in its District of Kentucky[d])
16 Tennessee June 1, 1796
(admitted) Southwest Territory
17 Ohio March 1, 1803[e]
(admitted) Northwest Territory (part)
18 Louisiana April 30, 1812
(admitted) Territory of Orleans
19 Indiana December 11, 1816
(admitted) Indiana Territory
20 Mississippi December 10, 1817
(admitted) Mississippi Territory
21 Illinois December 3, 1818
(admitted) Illinois Territory (part)
22 Alabama December 14, 1819
(admitted) Alabama Territory
23 Maine March 15, 1820
(admitted) Massachusetts (District of Maine[f])
24 Missouri August 10, 1821
(admitted) Missouri Territory (part)
25 Arkansas June 15, 1836
(admitted) Arkansas Territory
26 Michigan January 26, 1837
(admitted) Michigan Territory
27 Florida March 3, 1845
(admitted) Florida Territory
28 Texas December 29, 1845
(admitted) Republic of Texas
29 Iowa December 28, 1846
(admitted) Iowa Territory (part)
30 Wisconsin May 29, 1848
(admitted) Wisconsin Territory (part)
31 California September 9, 1850
(admitted) unorganized territory (part)
32 Minnesota May 11, 1858
(admitted) Minnesota Territory (part)
33 Oregon February 14, 1859
(admitted) Oregon Territory (part)
34 Kansas January 29, 1861
(admitted) Kansas Territory (part)
35 West Virginia June 20, 1863
(admitted) Virginia (50 Trans-Allegheny region counties[g])
36 Nevada October 31, 1864
(admitted) Nevada Territory
37 Nebraska March 1, 1867
(admitted) Nebraska Territory
38 Colorado August 1, 1876
(admitted) Colorado Territory
39[h] North Dakota November 2, 1889[i]
(admitted) Dakota Territory (part)
40 South Dakota November 2, 1889[i]
(admitted) Dakota Territory (part)
41 Montana November 8, 1889
(admitted) Montana Territory
42 Washington November 11, 1889
(admitted) Washington Territory
43 Idaho July 3, 1890
(admitted) Idaho Territory
44 Wyoming July 10, 1890
(admitted) Wyoming Territory
45 Utah January 4, 1896
(admitted) Utah Territory
46 Oklahoma November 16, 1907
(admitted) Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory
47 New Mexico January 6, 1912
(admitted) New Mexico Territory
48 Arizona February 14, 1912
(admitted) Arizona Territory
49 Alaska January 3, 1959
(admitted) Territory of Alaska
50 Hawaii August 21, 1959
(admitted) Territory of Hawaii
Yes, I agree- I grew up learning there were 52 states- Puerto Rico was one, can’t remember the other.
I was about 7 or 8 years old when we had 52 States. The teachers and principal showed us the flag shortly before summer vacation came.
By time we the (class) came back we asked about the flag.. they teachers and principal that were so proud of this flag maybe for months before looked at us like we were crazy
31) New Mexico
32) New York
33) North Carolina
You missed Washington DC.
I went to travel school in 1996. We were taught there are 52 states the 50 United States and Puerto Rico and Hawaii. Makes 52. DC has always been considered a state, I guess not counted as one. If it were that would be 53. Personally. 51 is what makes up the us cluster of states.
No – DC and Puerto Rico have always been unincorporated territories.
We had 52. I found proff with older flags and maps. See my website
Its 52 jackass…know ur history
well ! For a reason I had to argue that the battle flag for the south was not a treason loss but a mistake of a past of wrong beliefs . 13 stars for a lot of mistakes or could the 13 be as simple as the colonist whom did not accept the King , Queen RULE ! I believe as a people we should be looking at things of fake news , and show some love for true Americans! Before we lose some more, OR MORE THAN JUST, STARS! UHH?
First off we never had 52 states officially. It is literally called “51st state” They at times included promising places/in process of becoming. For example if some they allowed us to sell Hawii to the UK it would not longer be a state. It is honestly basic history. If you think the flag has never been changed over time you are just flat out dumb. Go pickup a history book.
The 50 states and the District of Columbia
Incorporated, unorganized territory
Unincorporated territory with Commonwealth status
Unincorporated, organized territory
Unincorporated, unorganized territory
American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands are the inhabited U.S. territories
51-star flags have been designed and used as a symbol by supporters of statehood in various areas. This is an example of how a 51-star flag might look.
The “51st state”, in post-1959 American political discourse, is a phrase that refers to areas or locales that are – seriously or facetiously – considered candidates for U.S. statehood, joining the 50 states that presently compose the United States. The phrase has been applied to external territories as well as parts of existing states which would be admitted as separate states in their own right.”
I have a distinct memory of 52 states also. Ok so let’s say I merged into this timeline somewhere along the way- then what the heck happened to the me already on this timeline???
I don’t know because one of my teachers say 50 and one of them say 52 I do not know who is right.
*there ARE not there is.
I never ever thought there were more or less than 50 states. I dont understand weird phenomenon.
I have a verifiable example of the Mandela effect. I would swear that there is a passage in the Bible that states ” and the lion will lay with the lamb ” but if you check the bible it says ” the wolf shall lay with the lamb”. Ok you may ask how is this verifiable? The answer is, watch the 1941 classic Sargent York it shows York standing with his girl and a old man sitting on the porch reading the bible and he says aloud ” and the Lion will lay with the lamb ” that he is reading from the Bible. Dispute that.
Their were 52 state, s. One i don’t see on the map is arkensaw it was some we’re above texas or maby it was what is the top part of texas no no mistakenfor Arkansas that is one im trying to remember the other one
I was taught there were 52 one i don’t see is arkensaw i believe it was the top part or texas im trying to remember the other one and no its not mistaken for Arkansas it was one as well
Why in blazes would America ever have two states whose names were spelled differently but pronounced EXACTLY the same way, so that nobody ever knew which one you were talking about when you said it?
Their is also a area in Georgia that is not part of Georgia its its owne place i cant think of what it is called
Liberia is a territory of the U S, that was a big reason the Civil War was fought, Lincoln was going going to send the slaves there or to south America
This is making my brain hurt!!!
This was a topic argued in my life.
From that I can say the deciding factor for me was an old speech done by an ex-president welcoming Hawaii. Sure could of taken out a map and marked each state as I counted but what if I counted incorrectly [count a state mark it and count it again without realizing]. I feel safe to assume that this is where most Mandela effects come from; An important person making a speech with misinformation or flat out wrong information and people gobbling it up with resources to mark their correctness and the importance of said person overriding proper recall because “Who Are You?!”
It’s 50 states, you might think it’s 52 because 48 are mainland + 2 apart mainland. Alaska and Hawaii or not mainland. So some of you might be thinking 50+2 for that reason when really it’s 48+2. Tidbit extra here, Texas is actually a republic unto itself and was voted in a state, but it’s actually it’s own republic as written in law. Hawaii was forcefully/illegally voted in as a state. Again, as is written by the letter of the law, it too is not a state as it was not legally brought into the country as a state. And not, Puerto Rico is not a state, doesn’t look likes its far from it though.
Are you people nuts? I’m 54 years old. There have been 50 states since I was born in 1964 and that hasn’t changed.
Where are you people getting this nonsense? I love a good conspiracy and believe there are a number of them. This isn’t one. 50 states. Been that way since Hawaii “joined” the union.
I have a US map with quarter in it. I counted 52 my husband said no 50. So I just want to know. When I went to school many moons ago. I was told 52 cards in a deck there are 52 states in USA.
Ok idiots there’s 50 states and there will most likely not be anymore states added.
I hate people now!
sorry I ever asked this question. Now I have a headache. And, I am out of sorts.
I want to know area 52exciste this part of united state
areal 52 excist in united state
Can you people of ask the vancouver art gallery except my picture to display an show to the people vancouver british columbia.
I been discremate this is not fair what the people work for the vancouver art gallery
I’m a photographer of vancouver
Ok, so a mom asked me to print a list of the states and their capital. Should I print the list of 50 + 2 or keep it at 50. I don’t want her son to get a bad grade on account everyone has a different answer. Please help.
There is no Mandela Effect here. Most people are apparently not Americans who would even think there were 52 States. Remember “Hawaii 5-0”.— the 50th State, In 1959. Alaska became the 49th State earlier the same year—1/3/59. There was a rivalry at the time which state would be first! As an American, I also cac’t Tell you how many provinces are in Canada, or States in. Mexico!
Anyone thinking there were ever more than 50 states, please show us your report cards lmao. History had to be your worst subject!
There has never been 52 states. There are 52 cards in a deck. And 48 continental states and don’t forget Alaska and Hawaii ( 49 and 50)
Washington DC like many have already tried to explain has never been a state.
The stupid Mandela effect is just people memories mixing facts.
I too have a great memory and one day I was looking for my wallet. I knew for a fact I layed it on the kitchen table. After 20 minutes of looking I reached in my pocket and pulled it out.
At that point I was like, duh I picked it back up so I didn’t spill my coffee on it.
Memories are fallible no matter how good you think it is.
I think most people, including some Presidents, tend to think of a deck of cards (for some strange reason)when asked how many states there are. But if you want to add the two extra states, try the state of confusion and the state of mediocrity. There are 50 states (well…..maybe 46 with 4 commonwealth states…..oh wait….Purto Rico and The Northern Mariana Islands, are commonwealths….Oh well…..I give up.