British Colonies to United States Timeline

To help put things into perspective I have compiled the table below to show our history from the first granted charter to the first settlement to the formation of the New World into the United States of America. As anyone who has traversed this journey into the past knows, there is some shoddy research out there. Take place names of events in our ancestors lives, for example. Did they happen where we think they did? Or are we attributing the wrong place, i.e. State, County, Colony etc..., where the event occurred. I'm going to try for my own work to be as accurate as possible meaning the name of the place WHEN the event happened.

A prime example of this is the State of West Virginia. Many researchers, and indeed many records, are inaccurate in this respect. It was originally part of the British Virginia Colony (1607–1776) and the western part of the state of Virginia (1776–1863), whose population became sharply divided over the issue of secession from the Union and in the separation from Virginia, formalized by admittance to the Union as a new state on June 20, 1863. So no matter what the record states, they were transcribed after they became a state so they where transcribed as STATE records, nobody could have been born in, married in or died in the State of West Virginia.
After Sir Walter Raleigh decides that Great Britain should have an empire that rivals that of Spain, he establishes the first English settlement on the island of Roanoke. That settlement disappears, but opens the door for English settlers to go to the New World and establish colonies that will later become part of the United States of America.

On 25 March 1584 Queen Elizabeth I of England granted a charter to Sir Walter Raleigh (1554-1618) to search and discover "remote, heathen and barbarous lands, not actually possessed of any Christian prince or people", and to "take possession of them" in the name of the Queen."

With this document began the first determined endeavor by the British Crown to colonize the North American continent.
Charter to Sir Walter Raleigh - The Roanoke Colony is founded

In 1584, after a small scouting expedition had returned from North America with two Native Americans and many astonishing stories, Sir Walter Raleigh tried to establish a colony called Roanoke in the land which the British named "Virginia", in honor of Elizabeth, the Virgin Queen. The site was actually an island on North America's eastern seaboard protected by the outer banks of what is now North Carolina's coast. Sir Richard Grenville led the fleet that brought them to the New World; the Governor of the colony was Master Ralph Lane and among the colonists was Walter Raleigh's confidant Thomas Harriot. Sir Francis Drake, who was seeking Spanish conquests in the New World, rescued this group just as they were losing control of their situation. Another colony was left at Roanoke in 1587 but by 1590, when a long delayed supply ship finally arrived, they had disappeared without a trace. This was the so-called "Lost Colony".

A baby was born in Roanoke at this time. Little Virginia Dare, was the granddaughter of John White, the appointed Governor of the "Lost Colony", and was probably the first English baby born in the New World. Sir Walter Raleigh sent ships to America to search for the colonists but they were unsuccessful. By the time the next English settlers arrived in North America to colonize Jamestown it was nearly twenty years later and, although several attempts were made to find out what happened to them, the fate of the "Lost Colony" was never fully explained.
John White returns to Roanoke and finds deserted land

After helping establish the first English settlement on the Island of Roanoke, off the coast of modern day North Carolina, John White reluctantly returned to England for supplies. Delayed by war for three years, he returns on August 18, 1590 to find the colonists are gone. It is still not known what happened to them.
  • Based on George Weymouth's accounts of voyages to the New England area in 1606, two private companies were formed to seek a patent for colonization on the Atlantic Coast. One of these companies was called the London Company and it was given the southern Virginia territory. The other company was called the Plymouth Company and its patent was for northern Virginia. Both companies quickly sought to exercise their patents but the London Company was the first to actually place colonists on the shore. In 1607, 105 London Company sponsored settlers arrived from England to begin the story that we all remember from our school days. Since they were there representing England and its King, James I, they settled in an encampment they called Jamestown on a river they named the James River.
  • The first year was devastating for the colonists, with only 32 colonists surviving the winter and only then because Native Americans living in the area came to their aid with food. After a supply ship arrived the next year they had additional provisions but many more colonists to feed as well. Once again, over the winter, most of the colonists died of starvation and from hostile encounters with their neighbors. As winter came to a close, ships arrived, and most of them were ready to leave. But as they were leaving, Lord Thomas de la Warr (Delaware is named after him) arrived from England with new supplies and more settlers. He refused to let the survivors return to England. Slowly, as they reached agreements with the local Native American tribes and they learned how to grow some of their own crops, the colony began to prosper.
  • Most of those original Jamestown settlers were after profit, mainly riches in the form of gold and other precious metals. They had not given enough thought to the perils that they would face in this unknown land. One of the settlers, however, was familiar with hardship and was committed to Jamestown's survival. Capt. John Smith was a soldier and adventurer. He had fought in France and Hungary, been captured and escaped. Although his personality caused him some initial problems with the other colonists (he arrived in Jamestown in chains after alienating the leaders of the expedition) he eventually made contact with the local Native American chieftain Powhatan, who provided the colonists with much of their food in that first year. Capt. Smith was eventually even appointed leader of the colony.
  • One of Powhatan's children, a daughter called Pocahontas, visited the colonists in the early years and even brought food and other provisions to them. Several years later in an attempt to obtain bargaining advantage over Powhatan the colonists kidnapped Pocahontas and she stayed with them in Jamestown. A colonist, John Rolfe (who incidentally was the first of the colonists to cultivate commercial quality tobacco and start the Colony on its way towards profitability) eventually married her and took her to England. She died as they were preparing to return to Virginia.
  • In 1619 a group of 20 Africans are brought by a Dutch ship to Jamestown for sale as indentured servants, marking the beginning of slavery in Colonial America.
  • Grouped with the Southern Colonies, Virginia started out as a Corporate colony (granted by Royal charter to a Company of investors who have governing rights) but in 1624 became a Royal colony (subject to the governing authority of the granting Royalty).
  • In 1624 the Potwhatan's were attacking the English settlers, more than 340 colonist were killed. The attack then forced the Virginia Company to send in more troops and supplies leaving it nearly bankrupt. In 1624 James I, disgusted by the turmoil in Virginia, revoked the company's charter and made Virginia a Royal Colony.
  • In 1676 the village of Jamestown was nearly destroyed during "Bacon's Rebellion." (See below)
  • On 25 Jun 1788 Virginia was the tenth state to ratify the Constitution and recommended the Bill of Rights be added.
  • In 1607, about the same time as the Jamestown colonization, a group of English colonists attempted to establish a colony in the Northern Virginia territory. The colony, a fort named Fort St. George, was located in present day Maine and was named Popham after its leader George Popham. It lasted for approximately a year before the discouraged settlers returned to England.
  • The Pilgrims were the first English colonists to permanently settle in New England in what we now know as Massachusetts. On September 16, 1620 the ship "Mayflower" set off from Plymouth, England on its journey to the New World. There were 102 passengers on the Mayflower including 41 Christian Puritan Separatists known collectively as the Leiden group. After spending many years in Holland exiled from the English Church, the Puritans were seeking a new life of religious freedom in America. All 102 of the passengers were referred to as the "Pilgrims" after they arrived on November 9, 1620 at Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The group had obtained a Patent from the London Virginia Company which indentured them into service for the Company for seven years after they arrived and settled. To prepare for their life in America, they had sought advice from people who had already visited the New World. Among their advisors was Captain John Smith who, earlier, had helped found Jamestown for the Virginia Company. It took sixty six days to reach New England and the journey was very hard for these non-seafarers. When they arrived they anchored off the tip of Cape Cod, in an area now known as Massachusetts, and before they even set foot on shore they wrote, and all the men signed, an agreement called the "Mayflower Compact" that would set the rules to guide them through the early, hard times of establishing a new community. The Compact, which was signed on November 21, 1620 (modern date, see note below), served as the official Constitution of the Plymouth Colony for many years.
  • For nearly a month they explored, by foot and in boats, the area around Cape Cod using the maps they had obtained in England. During their exploration they had a few minor encounters with the local natives. Finally, on December 21, they decided on a location near Plymouth Harbor which they named Plymouth. Nearly half of the colonists and crew died from illnesses that first winter as they struggled to build their town. The following spring they were visited by a local Wampanoag native named Samoset who, surprisingly, spoke some broken English. Eventually he introduced the settlers to another native named Squanto who's village had occupied the area before the Pilgrims arrived. Squanto had been kidnapped by English explorers and while he was in Europe the rest of his people had all been killed by diseases brought by European explorers. Squanto spoke English very well and he stayed with the Pilgrims and taught them many valuable skills that enabled them to survive in their new country. He also played a very big part in bringing the Pilgrims and the local native population together, leading, eventually to a long, but restless, peace.
  • Not long after the Pilgrims arrived in Plymouth (1628) the Puritans came to Massachusetts and settled Naumkeag (later called Salem). John Winthrop, carrying the Massachusetts Bay Charter, arrived in 1630 and founded Boston. Maine was annexed to Massachusetts in 1652 and later the Plymouth Colony was too.
  • The relationship between the Native tribes and the colonists in New England was always strained but generally didn't result in much bloodshed. In 1637 colonists, with the cooperation of several local tribes, mounted a devastating attack on a tribe known as the Pequots and then, in 1675, the long accord that had existed between the New England colonists and the local native tribes came apart in a bloody war known as King Phillip's War (see below) after the leader of the Wampanoag tribe, Metacomet, who was also known by his English nickname "King Phillip". Metacomet was the son of Massasoit the Wampanoag leader who had originally greeted the Plymouth settlers.
  • Massachusetts was a New England colony which started out as a Corporate colony but became a Royal colony in 1691
  • On February 6, 1788 Massachusetts was the sixth state to ratify the Constitution.
New Hampshire
  • In 1623 two groups of English settlers, sent by Captain John Mason, arrived in what is now called New Hampshire (after John Masons home County of Hampshire, England) and established a fishing village near the mouth of the Piscataqua River. New Hampshire would remain an English colony throughout the colonial period even though, at various times, it came under Massachusetts jurisdiction.
  • In 1638, John Wheelwright, banished from Boston for defending his sister-in-law Anne Hutchinson, founded a settlement called Exeter in New Hampshire. In 1639 the settlers signed the "Exeter Compact" patterned after the "Mayflower Compact".
  • One of the New England Colonies, New Hampshire started out as a Proprietary colony but it became a Royal colony in 1679.
  • In 1719 Scots-Irish settlers from Londonderry, Ireland were sent to form a "Scottish" settlement in New Hampshire named for their town of origin.
  • On June 21, 1788 New Hampshire was the ninth state to ratify the Constitution after which it was officially adopted.
New Jersey
  • Along with their holdings in New York, New Jersey was originally settled in 1623 by the Dutch as New Netherlands .
  • In 1664, after obtaining control of Dutch holdings lying between Virginia and New England, the Duke of York made a proprietary grant to Sir George Carteret and Lord Berkeley, of the land between the Hudson and the Delaware River. These men intended to profit from real estate sales. The new grant was named New Jersey for Carteret, who was governor of the Isle of Jersey.
  • One of the Middle Colonies, New Jersey started out as a Proprietary colony but in 1702 it was granted a Royal charter
  • New Jersey, on December 18, 1787, was the third state to ratify the Constitution.
New York
  • Although the Dutch West India Co. explored and began to settle the New York area as early as 1614, the principal occupation of the area did not occur until 1624 when Dutch settlers arrived at Governors Island and then spread to other areas in the region. In 1626, as we all remember from our early history lessons, Peter Minuit arrived on Manhattan Island and, with other Dutch settlers, bought the island from the local Indians for 60 gilders ($24.) worth of goods. The settlement and fort on the island became known as New Amsterdam which eventually became the City of New York. The Dutch holdings in the area were collectively called New Netherlands and included areas of what is now New Jersey. New Amsterdam was granted self government and incorporated by the Dutch in 1653.
  • In 1664, after King Charles II decided to reclaim the territory between Virginia and New England, Peter Stuyvesant surrendered to English forces and New Amsterdam was given to the King's brother, the Duke of York, and renamed New York. The Dutch continued to struggle with the British for control of New Netherlands off and on until 1674 when the British finally obtained full control.
  • One of the Middle Colonies, New York originally started out as a Proprietary colony (granted by Royalty to one or more proprietors who had full governing rights) but in 1685 became a Royal colony
  • On July 26, 1788 New York became the eleventh state to ratify the Constitution.
  • In 1632 Charles I granted a Maryland Charter to Lord Baltimore (George Calvert, Baron of Baltimore). Lord Baltimore wanted very much to see the Colony become a reality and his son Cecil saw to it that the new Colony was settled. In 1633 the first group of settlers set sail for Maryland to establish a colony of freemen led by Leonard Calvert, Cecil Calvert's younger brother.
  • One of the Southern Colonies, Maryland was a Proprietary colony
  • Maryland was the seventh state to ratify the Constitution on April 28, 1788.
Rhode Island
  • While scattered Europeans began to settle the area as early as 1620, the first permanent settlement wasn't established until 1636. In 1635 Roger Williams was driven from Salem, Massachusetts for espousing religious and political freedom. After spending the winter with the Indians he finally bought land from the Narragansett Indians and settled in what is now called Providence. The new colony became a haven for those seeking religious freedom.
  • In 1638, Anne Hutchinson, having been banned from Massachusetts, helped found Portsmouth, Rhode Island.
  • A New England Colony, Rhode Island was established as a Corporate colony and received a Royal "Charter of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations" in 1663. Among other unique guarantees, the Charter established complete religious freedom in Rhode Island, which was unusual at the time, and later formed the basis for similar provisions in the U.S. Constitution.
  • Although Rhode Island was one of the first colonies to embrace autonomy from the British and espouse Revolutionary ideals (declared independence on 4 May 1776), it was the last of the 13 colonies to ratify the Federal Constitution and became a State on May 29, 1790.
  • Dutch traders had established a permanent settlement near Hartford as early as 1633. Soon English settlers began to arrive in the area from Massachusetts. In 1636, after being driven from Massachusetts, Clergyman Thomas Hooker and his followers arrived in Hartford and declared freedom from all save Divine Authority. In 1639 the "Fundamental Orders" were enacted to govern the colony. In 1662 Connecticut finally obtained a Royal Charter under John Winthrop Jr.
  • One of the New England Colonies, Connecticut was also a Corporate colony
  • On January 9, 1788 Connecticut was the fifth state to ratify the Constitution.
  • In 1631, the first settlement was attempted in Delaware by Dutch traders led by Captain David Pietersen de Vries. By 1632 the party had been killed in a dispute with the local natives.
  • In 1638, Peter Minuet, now in the service of the Swedish, led a group of Swedish settlers to the Delaware River area under a grant from the New Sweden Company. It was these Swedish settlers that brought the log cabin design to America.
  • In 1655 the Dutch gained control of the land from the Swedish. In 1664 the English obtained Delaware after defeating the Dutch. The Dutch briefly recaptured Delaware in 1673 but in 1674 the English finally took control. In 1682 Delaware was awarded to William Penn but his control didn't last and Delaware became independent in 1701 and elected its own assembly in 1704.
  • One of the Middle Colonies, Delaware was a Proprietary colony
  • Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution and become a State on December 7, 1787.
North Carolina
  • North Carolina's outer banks were the scene of the first British colonizing efforts in North America. Both attempts, in the late 1500's, to form a colony on Roanoke Island did not succeed.
  • Carolinas & Georgia Virginia colonists began to settle the North Carolina region in 1653 to provide a buffer for the southern frontier. In 1691 Albermarle, the northern Carolina region, was officially recognized by the English crown. This is the first time the "North Carolina" designation was used.
  • One of the Southern Colonies, North Carolina started out as a Proprietary colony but obtained a Royal charter in 1729 from George II.
  • After agreeing to the first 12 amendments, on November 21, 1789, North Carolina became the 12th state to ratify the new Constitution.
South Carolina
  • South Carolina was the site of the first European settlement in North America. In 1526 San Miguel de Guadalupe was established by settlers from Hispanolia who initially landed in South Carolina but ended up moving to an area of the Carolina region that would eventually become Georgia. The party returned to Hispanolia after suffering many deaths due to fever the first year.
  • In 1663 King Charles II created the colony of Carolina (named for King Charles II) by granting the territory, of what is now roughly North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to loyal supporters. This colonial charter was challenged by many Virginians who had settled in Albermarle Sound and resented their inclusion in the Carolina Charter. Charleston (originally Charles Town after the King) was founded in 1670 by a group of 200 colonists from English Barbados. The leader of the colonists was Sir John Yeamans, a powerful plantation owner on Barbados.
  • One of the Southern Colonies, South Carolina started out as a Proprietary colony but also became a Royal colony in 1719.
  • On May 23, 1788 South Carolina was the eighth state to ratify the Constitution.
  • As early as 1647, settlement occured on what is now Pennsylvania soil by Swedish, Dutch and English settlers in the Delaware River region. In 1681 however, Pennsylvania's colonial status was sealed when approximately the present state of Pennsylvania was granted to William Penn, a member of the Society of Friends (Quakers), to offset a debt owed to Penn's father. In 1682 the city plan for Philadelphia was laid out. In 1682 the "Frame of Government" for Pennsylvania was put into effect. In 1683 the first German settlers arrived in Pennsylvania and formed Germantown near Philadelphia.
  • One of the Middle Colonies, Pennsylvania was a Proprietary colony
  • In 1763, Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon, two young British astronomers commissioned to establish a borderline between Maryland and Pennsylvania, worked for more than four years to settle a century-old boundary dispute between the Calverts of Maryland and the Penns of Pennsylvania by establishing the Mason-Dixon Line.
  • On December 12, 1787 Pennsylvania was the second state to ratify the Constitution.
  • There were a few Spanish settlements along the coast, north of Florida, in the 16th and early 17th century but what is now Georgia was originally just the southern portion of the Carolina grant. Hoping to provide a second chance for adventurous members of the English under class, King George II, in 1732, granted Georgia to James Edward Oglethorpe, an English general. In addition to its lofty social goals the new Colony was also intended to provide additional protection for its northern colonial partners. Prior to Oglethorpe and his party settling the area in 1733, Fort King George was the only English occupation in the area. The Fort, which was established in 1721, was the Southern-most post in the Colonies and was situated to provide a buffer against Spanish and French intrusion from the South.
  • In 1738, General Oglethorpe brought a large military contingent to Georgia and the following year his troops provided a strong showing against the Spanish in King George's War (the War of Austrian Succession in Europe). General Oglethorpe led his men into St. Augustine and although they were not able to obtain a victory there, when the Spanish sailed into Georgia seeking retaliation two years later, he and his soldiers were able to drive the Spanish back to Florida for, what turned out to be, the last time.
  • One of the Southern Colonies, Georgia started out as a Proprietary colony but eventually became a Royal colony in 1752.
  • On January 2, 1788 Georgia was the fourth state to ratify the Constitution.
Wars & Fighting
The Pequot War

This war was the culmination of numerous conflicts between the colonists and the Indians. There were disputes over property, livestock damaging Indian crops, hunting, the selling of alcohol to Indians, and dishonest traders. Besides these, the Colonists believed that they had a God given right to settle this New World. They saw the Indian as savages who needed to be converted to their way of God. Unfortunately, the colonists felt superior to all Indians even those who became Christian. The Indian was in a difficult situation. He constantly suffered at the hands of the colonists, yet at the same time was growing more dependent on the Colonists trade goods. The Indians were also disturbed at the encroachment of their lands by the colonies.
King Philip's War

King Philip's War (also known as Metacom's Rebellion) marked the last major effort by the Indians of southern New England to drive out the English settlers. Led by Metacom, the Pokunoket chief called 'King Philip' by the English, the bands known today as Wampanoag Indians joined with the Nipmucks, Pocumtucks, and Narragansetts in a bloody uprising. It lasted fourteen months and destroyed twelve frontier towns.
Bacon's Rebellion

Bacon's Rebellion was an armed rebellion in 1676 by Virginia settlers led by young Nathaniel Bacon against the rule of Governor William Berkeley. On July 30, 1676, Bacon and his army issued the "Declaration of the People of Virginia." The declaration criticized Berkeley's administration in detail. It accused him of levying unfair taxes, appointing friends to high positions, and failing to protect frontier settlers from Indian attack. After months of conflict, Bacon's forces, numbering 300-500 men, moved to Jamestown. They burned the colonial capital to the ground on September 19, 1676.
King William's War

King William's War was very different in aim and meaning in the colonies from what it was beyond the Atlantic. In America it was the first of several fierce contests, covering seventy years; or, it may be said, it was the beginning of a seventy years' war with intervals of peace, for the supremacy in North America.
Queen Anne's War

The American phase of the War of the Spanish Succession fought in Europe, 1701–14. The main conflict in America was between the French and British colonies. It resulted in Great Britain getting Acadia (Nova Scotia) from France and in French recognition of British claims to the Hudson Bay area and Newfoundland. It was the second of four wars in North America known collectively as the French and Indian Wars.
King George's War

King George's War is the name given to the operations in North America that formed part of the 1744–1748 War of the Austrian Succession. It was the third of the four French and Indian Wars. A struggle between France and Great Britain for mastery of the North American continent.
French & Indian War

The Seven Years' War (called the French and Indian War in the colonies), formed a chapter in the imperial struggle between Britain and France called the Second Hundred Years' War. A massive conflict involving Austria, England, France, Great Britain, Prussia, and Sweden called the Seven Years War. The conflict was played out in Europe, India, and North America.
4 Jul 1776
The Colonies Declare Independence

By issuing the Declaration of Independence, adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, the 13 American colonies severed their political connections to Great Britain. The Declaration summarized the colonists' motivations for seeking their independence. By declaring themselves an independent nation, the American colonists were able to conclude an official alliance with the government of France and obtain French assistance in the war against Great Britain.
American Revolutionary War

Began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Thirteen Colonies, but gradually grew into a world war between Britain on one side and the newly formed United States, France, Netherlands, Spain, and Mysore on the other. American independence was achieved and European powers recognized the independence of the United States, with mixed results for the other nations involved.
14 Jun 1777
First American Flag
The Second Continental Congress passes a resolution that states that the American flag shall have 13 stripes, alternately in red and white, to represent the 13 colonies. Despite all of the variations of the U.S. flag over time, the 13 stripes have never changed.
"Resolved, that the Flag of the thirteen United States shall be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the Union be thirteen stars, white on a blue field, representing a new constellation."
Stars represent Delaware (December 7, 1787), Pennsylvania (December 12, 1787), New Jersey (December 18, 1787), Georgia (January 2, 1788), Connecticut (January 9, 1788), Massachusetts (February 6, 1788), Maryland (April 28, 1788), South Carolina (May 23, 1788), New Hampshire (June 21, 1788), Virginia (June 25, 1788), New York (July 26, 1788), North Carolina (November 21, 1789), and Rhode Island (May 29, 1790)
Preceding Entity
1 Delaware December 7, 1787 Lower Counties on Delaware, i.e., the lower counties of Pennsylvania, then a sovereign State in Confederation
2 Pennsylvania December 12, 1787 Province of Pennsylvania, then sovereign state in Confederation.
3 New Jersey December 18, 1787 Province of New Jersey, then sovereign state in Confederation
4 Georgia January 2, 1788 Province of Georgia, then sovereign state in Confederation
5 Connecticut January 9, 1788 Connecticut Colony, then sovereign state in Confederation
6 Massachusetts February 6, 1788 Province of Massachusetts Bay, then sovereign state in Confederation
7 Maryland April 28, 1788 Province of Maryland, then sovereign state in Confederation
8 South Carolina May 23, 1788 Province of South Carolina, then sovereign state in Confederation
9 New Hampshire June 21, 1788 Province of New Hampshire, then sovereign state in Confederation
10 Virginia June 25, 1788 Virginia Colony, then sovereign state in Confederation
11 New York July 26, 1788 Province of New York, then sovereign state in Confederation
12 North Carolina November 21, 1789 Province of North Carolina, then sovereign state in Confederation
13 Rhode Island May 29, 1790 Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, then sovereign state in Confederation
14 Vermont March 4, 1791 Province of New York and New Hampshire Grants (ownership disputed), the Republic of Vermont
15 Kentucky June 1, 1792 Kentucky County, Virginia. Split off with consent of that state's legislature.
16 Tennessee June 1, 1796 Formed from western land donated to the Federal government by North Carolina, and first state to originate from a territory
17 Ohio March 1, 1803 The Northwest Territory, land claims ceeded to the Federal government by the Eastern states such as Pennsylvania, Virginia, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New York
18 Louisiana April 30, 1812 Territory of Orleans
19 Indiana December 11, 1816 Indiana Territory, formed from the Northwest Territory
20 Mississippi December 10, 1817 Mississippi Territory, formed from land ceded to the Federal government by Georgia
21 Illinois December 3, 1818 Illinois Territory, formed from the Northwest Territory
22 Alabama December 14, 1819 Alabama Territory, formed from the Mississippi Territory, land ceded to the Federal government by the State of Georgia
23 Maine March 15, 1820 Split off from Massachusetts with consent of the legislature that state (formerly called the District of Maine)
24 Missouri August 10, 1821 Missouri Territory, from the Louisiana Purchase
25 Arkansas June 15, 1836 Arkansas Territory from the Louisiana Purchase
26 Michigan January 26, 1837 Michigan Territory, formed from the Northwest Territory
27 Florida March 3, 1845 Florida Territory, purchased from the Spanish Empire
28 Texas December 29, 1845 The Republic of Texas, which voluntarily merged into the United States
29 Iowa December 28, 1846 Iowa Territory from the Louisiana Purchase
30 Wisconsin May 29, 1848 Wisconsin Territory, formed from the Northwest Territory
31 California September 9, 1850 Admitted directly from the Mexican Cession[note 2]
32 Minnesota May 11, 1858 Minnesota Territory
33 Oregon February 14, 1859 Oregon Territory
34 Kansas January 29, 1861 Kansas Territory
35 West Virginia June 20, 1863 Divided off from Virginia, with the "consent" of a pro-Union Virginia government in Wheeling unrecognized by that state's rebelling legislature in Richmond
36 Nevada October 31, 1864 Nevada Territory, with some adjacent parts of the Arizona Territory and the partially from the Deseret Territory added later on
37 Nebraska March 1, 1867 Nebraska Territory
38 Colorado August 1, 1876 Colorado Territory created from portions of the Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Utah territories.
39 North Dakota November 2, 1889 Dakota Territory
40 South Dakota November 2, 1889 Dakota Territory
41 Montana November 8, 1889 Montana Territory, partially from the Deseret Territory
42 Washington November 11, 1889 Washington Territory, formed from the Oregon Territory
43 Idaho July 3, 1890 Idaho Territory (1863), formed from the Deseret Territory
44 Wyoming July 10, 1890 Wyoming Territory, partially from the Deseret Territory
45 Utah January 4, 1896 Utah Territory, from the Deseret Territory
46 Oklahoma November 16, 1907 Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory
47 New Mexico January 6, 1912 New Mexico Territory
48 Arizona February 14, 1912 Arizona Territory
49 Alaska January 3, 1959 Russian America, Department of Alaska, District of Alaska, and then the Territory of Alaska
50 Hawaii August 21, 1959 The Kingdom of Hawaii, the Republic of Hawaii, and then the Territory of Hawaii

A note on the subject of dates:

Just to make things a little more confusing. Today we all use a calendar called the Gregorian calendar. The official adoption of the Gregorian calendar by Pope Gregory was in 1582 but many countries (especially non-Catholic countries) did not adopt it until much later and continued to use the Julian calendar that dated back to Julius Caesar's time. The Gregorian calendar was not adopted in England until 1752 (and that includes the United States because it was an English colony at the time) so the date on the Mayflower Compact (November 11, 1620), for instance, was based on the Julian calendar. The time between 1582 and 1752, therefore, is kind of a no mans land for dates and can be 10 to 12 days different depending on when it happened and which calendar is used in your reference. To convert to the Gregorian calendar you add approximately 10 days to the date from the Julian calendar. That means the Pilgrims signed the Mayflower Compact on the 11th and the 21st, depending on which calendar you use. I have only recently realized that this uncertainty exists in some of my references. Almost all of the dates on this page occurred while England was using the Julian calendar so if the date is taken from the original source it is probably about 10 days different than our calendar would indicate. I am going to be looking at my dates with a new pair of eyes now. If you suspect I have confused my calendars somehow, please let me know.

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