Special Report

How Your State Was Founded

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6. Colorado
> Founding date: August 1, 1876 (38th state to join)
> First capital city: Denver
> First governor: John Long Routt

Colorado was part of Mexico in 1848, then part of the Territory of Kansas, then part of an unorganized territory. It became its own territory just before the Civil War began in 1861. Colorado would have to wait fifteen years as a territory before it became a state.

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7. Connecticut
> Founding date: January 9, 1788 (5th state to join)
> First capital city: Hartford
> First governor: Samuel Huntington

Connecticut is sometimes known as the Constitution State because it is home to the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, the first constitution written in the U.S., adopted in 1639. However, the state was the fifth colonial government to approve the Constitution, so it became the fifth state to join the United States.

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8. Delaware
> Founding date: December 7, 1787 (1st state to join)
> First capital city: Dover
> First governor: Thomas Collins

Delaware’s representatives were the first to ratify the new U.S. Constitution in 1787, less than a week before Pennsylvania, making it the first state. Delaware’s status as the first state is a major point of pride for its residents. The date Delaware ratified the Constitution, Dec. 7, 1787, is on the state flag.

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9. Florida
> Founding date: March 3, 1845 (27th state to join)
> First capital city: Tallahassee
> First governor: William Dunn Moseley

In America’s early years after winning its independence from England, Spain was having difficulty controlling its territory of Florida. After many border disputes between Spain and the U.S., Secretary of State John Quincy Adams purchased the area in 1819 for $5 million.

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10. Georgia
> Founding date: January 2, 1788 (4th state to join)
> First capital city: Augusta
> First governor: George Mathews

Georgia was the last of the 13 original colonies to be established after it was settled by James Oglethorpe in 1732, but it was one of the first states to ratify the new Constitution. Georgia’s delegates ratified the Constitution on Jan. 2, 1788, making it the fourth state.

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