Introduction - Florida FactsThe only U.S. state to boarder both the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico is Florida, the state in the most southeast region of the United States. It is situated in a geographical position where it boasts the second longest coastline in the US, only Alaska has a longer coastline. The famous European explorer who first spotted Florida was Ponce de Leon in 1513, when it is believed he landed near what is now Saint Augustine. To find out more information about this state, including why it is named Florida, read the kid-friendly list of state facts, quick facts, historical facts, and interesting facts below.
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Florida State Quick Facts
- Florida is the 27th state in the United States of America.
- Florida officially became a state on March 3, 1845.
- The state capital is Tallahassee.
- The largest city in Florida is Jacksonville.
- This state's population is 19,552,860 (source 2013 United States Census Bureau estimate).
- In terms of the size of Florida, it ranks 22nd largest out of the 50 states but it is the 2nd largest state east of the Mississippi.
- Florida ranks 4th in most populous states in the United States, behind New York by only about 100,000 people (source 2013 United States Census Bureau estimate).
- The state flower of Florida is the Orange Blossom.
- Residents are called Floridians.
- The most popular nickname for this state is "The Sunshine State".
- Major bodies of water within this U.S. state include Lake Okeechobee and Lake George as well as the St. Johns River, Suwannee River, and the St. Mary's River.
- The song titled Swanee Ribber is Florida's official state song. It is also known as Old Folks at Home.
Florida Historical Facts
- The oldest European settlement in all of the U.S. is Saint Augustine, Florida.
- Control over Florida went to Britain in 1763, when it was traded by the Spanish for Havana, Cuba which it lost to the British during the Seven Years' War.
- The Battle of Olustee on February 20, 1864 was the only major battle of the Civil War to occur on Florida soil.
- Old Kings Road built in 1763 is the oldest commercial road in Florida and was built by the British and named for King George of England.
Florida Keys Facts
- Marathon, Florida, which was once home to an entire Indian village, is also one of the Florida Keys most important historical sites.
- The shipwreck named the Benwood, off the coast of the Florida Keys, is one of the most popular shipwreck diving spots in the entire world.
- The place with the highest average temperature in the U.S. is Key West, Florida.
- The dive capital of the world is considered to be Key Largo.
Florida Interesting Facts
- The reason that Florida has its name is due to Spanish explorer, Ponce de Leon. Upon claiming Florida for Spain on Palm Sunday of 1513, he called it "Pascua de Florida" (or Feast of Flowers).
- This state is home to one of only a handful of rivers that flows north. It is called the Saint John's River.
- If you live in Clearwater, Florida, you have the greatest chance of being struck by lightening than anywhere else in the Unite States.