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Britain's American colonies broke with the mother country in 1776 and were recognized as the new nation of the United States of America following the Treaty of Paris in 1783. During the 19th and 20th centuries, 37 new states were added to the original 13 as the nation expanded across the North American continent and acquired a number of overseas possessions. The two most traumatic experiences in the nation's history were the Civil War (1861-65) and the Great Depression of the 1930s. Buoyed by victories in World Wars I and II and the end of the Cold War in 1991, the US remains the world's most powerful nation state. The economy is marked by steady growth, low unemployment and inflation, and rapid advances in technology.

 

Capital City:  Washington, DC (-5 GMT)
Currency:  U.S. dollar (convert)
Major Languages:  English, Spanish
Calling Code:  1
Voltage:  110V
Primary Religions:  Protestant, Roman Catholic
United States: 2008 Statistical Abstract of the United States
Detailed statistical data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Available in Excel and PDF formats, the tables offer a wide range of current and historical statistics on demographic, social and economic data. A very useful source.
United States: New York Stock Exchange
United States: Nuclear Energy Institute
The Nuclear Energy Institute offers information on a myriad of topics including caring about the environment, nuclear technology, and power plant safety. Also, the institute provides statistics and information on public policy issues like “top ten reasons why nuclear power is vital to America’s energy policy.”

Sources:
CIA World Factbook (September 2008)
U.S. Dept. of State Country Background Notes (October 2008)

 
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