David Aaron Gray

"Don't believe everything 
you hear on the radio"
- Charles Foster Kane

David Aaron Gray (Blog)

The Other 50 United States

Posted by davidaarongray on April 13, 2013 at 11:00 AM


51) Long Island (not quite long enough it seems)

There are or have been several movements regarding secession of parts of present day New York. The most prominent amongst these have been the movements for a state of Long Island.


The secession of Long Island from New York was proposed as early as 1896, with similar talk having been revived toward the later part ofthe 20th century.


On March 28, 2008, Suffolk County, New York, comptrollerJoseph Sawicki and Keith Durgan proposed a plan that would make Long Island (specifically, Nassau and Suffolk counties) the 51st state of the United States of America.


Sawicki said that all the Long Island taxpayers' money should stay on Long Island, rather than the funds being dispersed all over the entire state of New York.


The state of Long Island would include over 2.7 million people, not including the more populous west end of the island (Brooklyn and Queens).


Nassau County executive Ed Mangano came out in support of such a proposal in April 2010 and was said to be commissioning a study on it.


Any proposal would need to be approved by the New York StateLegislature, which has refuted all previous secession efforts, and the United States Congress.




52) Franklin (the original 14th state)


The State of Franklin was an unrecognized, autonomous "territory" located in what is today eastern Tennessee. Franklin was created in 1784 from part of the territory west of the Appalachian Mountains that had been offered by North Carolina as a cession to Congress to help pay off debts related to the American War for Independence.



ABOVE: In red, the state of Franklin now part of Tennessee


It was founded with the intent of becoming the fourteenth state of the new United States. Franklin's first capital was Jonesborough. After the summer of 1785, the government of Franklin (which was by then based in Greeneville), ruled as a "parallel government" running alongside (but not harmoniously with) a re-established North Carolina bureaucracy.


Franklin was never admitted into the union. The extra-legal state existed for only about four and a half years, ostensibly as a republic, after which North Carolina re-assumed full control of the area.


The creation of Franklin is novel, in that it resulted from both a cession (an offering from North Carolina to Congress) and a secession (seceding from North Carolina, when its offer to Congress was not acted upon, and the original cession was rescinded).



53) New York City ("The real New York")


In the battle over the ratification of the United States Constitution in 1787–1788, Governor George Clinton in Albany, wishing to preserve his independent power, led the local Anti-Federalists in opposition, with support for the Constitution coming from Alexander Hamilton and the Federalists, largely urbanites who saw opportunity in a stronger national union, and famously published as their manifesto the Federalist Papers in New York City newspapers.


There was a real divide, and with the recent independence of Vermont, a real threat of secession of New York City and the southern counties to join the new Federal government. The leaders of Richmond County, which always had a somewhat ambiguous position, threatened to join New Jersey. With secession threatening to marginalize Governor Clinton and a lightly developed upstate, ratification was finally agreed and the divisional crisis passed.


At the time, much of what is now upstate New York was disputed territory, with Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and Connecticut all claiming portions of the mostly undeveloped land. It would not be until the Phelps and Gorham Purchase and the Holland Purchase that the land would become New York territory.



ABOVE: In blue, proposed map of an independent New York City, the remainder of present day New York would be renamed the state of "Niagara."


"New York City: the 51st State" was the platform of the Norman Mailer–Jimmy Breslin candidacy in the 1969 New York City Democratic Mayoral Primary election. Mailer, a novelist, journalist, and filmmaker, and Breslin, an author and at the time a New York City newspaper columnist, proposed that the five New York City boroughs should secede from New York State, and become the 51st State of the U.S.


After a strong grassroots campaign, the ticket entered the primary on June 17, 1969 as decided underdogs. They finished second to last, garnering a city-wide total of 41,288 votes, 5% of the total votes cast.


On February 26, 2003, a bill was introduced by Astoria, Queens, Council Member Peter Vallone, Jr., and sponsored by 20 of 51 City Council members, reviving the idea of referendum for secession from New York State in the context of the red state vs. blue state divide and opposition to the policies of Governor George Pataki. A committee report was written but otherwise little action was taken, and the bill was reintroduced with one additional sponsor on the same date in 2004. Like Mayor Wood, Council Member Vallone has emphasized the fiscal benefits of secession, with revenue now derived not from tariffs, but from Wall Street. Council Member Vallone reintroduced the bill in 2006.


In January 2008, City Council member Vallone again offered a bill for the secession of New York City from New York state. After Mayor Michael Bloomberg testified to New York state legislators that New York City gives the state $11 billion more than it gets back, Vallone stated: "If not secession, somebody please tell me what other options we have if the state is going to continue to take billions from us and give us back pennies. Should we raise taxes some more? Should we cut services some more? Or should we consider seriously going out on our own?"




54) State of Superior


The proposed State of Superior (or State of Ontonagon) is the name of a "51st state" proposal involving the secession of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and possibly portions of northern Wisconsin from the states of Michigan, Wisconsin.


The proposal is spurred by cultural differences, geographic separation, and the belief that the capitals in Lansing, Michigan, and Madison, Wisconsin ignore the problems of the "Superior Region." The same area had been referred to as a possible future state named Sylvania by Thomas Jefferson.


Named for Lake Superior, the idea has gained serious attention at times, though it is unlikely to ever come to fruition because of the large amount of funding that the area receives from the lower parts of the states, and because the stronger connections were cemented between the U.P. of Michigan and the rest of the Michigan by the completion of the Mackinac Bridge in 1957, which gave the Upper Peninsula a direct highway connection to the rest of Michigan.



ABOVE: Map of proposed State of Superior. Red areas indicate generally accepted areas of Superior, while pink areas are present in some definitions.



Several prominent legislators, including local U.P. politician Dominic Jacobetti, attempted enacting such legislation in the 1970s, with no success.


If only the Upper Peninsula of Michigan were included in the proposed state, it would currently have the smallest population, with its 320,000 residents representing only 60 percent of Wyoming's population, and less than 50 percent of Alaska's.


It would rank 40th in land area, larger than Maryland. Its most-populous city, Marquette, has a smaller population than Burlington, Vermont; the latter has the smallest population of an American city of the 50 that is the most populous of its state.




55) South Jersey


The residents of South Jersey in the counties of Cape May, Cumberland, Salem, Atlantic, Camden, Gloucester, and Burlington have had a long resentment toward North Jersey under the opinion that they are being slighted and ignored by the state government, which is heavily weighted toward North Jersey


As recently as 1980, a non-binding referendum proposing secession from North Jersey was passed by these counties. It was also voted on in Ocean County, but did not pass in Ocean County.




ABOVE: Map highlighting the counties included in the broadest definition of South Jersey shown in blue, with Ocean County in light blue.



Other "almost states"


56) Cimarron Territory


57) State of Deseret


58) Long Republic


59) Trans-Oconee Republic


60) Kingdom of Beaver Island


61) Bear Republic


62) Conch Republic


63) Republic of Kinney


64) Republic of Madawaska


65) McDonald Territory


66) Sovereign State of Muskogee


67) Republic of the Rio Grande


68) Great Republic of Rough and Ready


69) State of Westmoreland


70) Sovereign State of Winneconne


71) State of Delmarva


72) The State of Shasta


73) State of Jefferson (Rocky Mountains)


74) State of Jefferson (Pacific)


75) State of Jefferson (South)


76) Matagorda


77) Territory of Colorado (California)


78) State of Lincoln (Northwestern)


79) State of Lincoln (Southern)


80) State of Sequoyah


81) Cascadia


82) Free and Independent State of Scott


83) Nickajack


84) Republic of Winston


85) State of Dade


86) Transylvania


87) Texlahoma


88) Sylvania


89) Lost Dakota


90) West Florida


91) Montezuma


92) Yazoo


93) Martha's Vineyard


94) Kanawha


95) Baja Arizona


96) Yucatan


97) Absaroka


98) Acadia


99) Adelsverein


100) Albania

Categories: Correcting the Historical Record

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