How Many States Are In USA – 50 Or 52

Have you ever wondered how many states there are in the United States? In classrooms across the country, students learn about the number of states that make up the United States of America (USA). Although most U.S. citizens are aware that there are 50 states in the country, some people are still unsure if there are really 52 states in the country. So, which number is correct?

The answer, of course, is that the United States of America has 50 states. Each with its own unique culture, history and economy. Each state has its own government, flag and constitution. There are 50 states in the United States of America. The most populous state is California, which has a population of about 2.5 million people. The smallest state in the United States is Rhode Island, which has a population of just under 3.3 million.

How Many States Are in USA: 50 or 52 States – Simply Explained

USA Flag with 50 stars
USA Flag with 50 stars

A simple way to check how many states are in the USA is to look at the number of stars on the flag of the USA. 

The USA flag consists of 13 horizontal stripes, alternating red and white. The colors of the flag represent the American values of justice, liberty and equality. The 50 stars on the flag represents the 50 states and the 50 states have 50 stars on their flags.

Why Do People Commonly Confuse Whether There Are 50 Or 52 States In The USA?

There are actually only 50 states in the United States of America. The other two “states” are actually federal districts – the District of Columbia (which contains the nation’s capital city, Washington D.C.) and Puerto Rico.

So why do so many people mistakenly believe that there are 52 states in the USA?

A possibility is that people are including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico when they think of the 50 states. While D.C. and Puerto Rico are not technically states, they are both part of the USA.

Finally, it’s also possible that people just don’t know how many states there are in the country. This isn’t surprising – after all, most people don’t need to know how many states there are on a daily basis.

Whatever the reason, the fact remains that there are only 50 states in the USA – not 52. So the next time someone tries to tell you that there are 52 states, you can set them straight!

Why The District of Columbia is not a state of the USA?

In the United States, the District of Columbia is not a state, but rather a federal district. The federal government of the United States controls the District of Columbia, which is not part of any state. The U.S. Constitution grants the federal government exclusive jurisdiction over the federal district. This means that the District of Columbia is not part of any state and does not have representation in the U.S. Senate. The District of Columbia does have a delegate in the U.S. House of Representatives, but this delegate is not allowed to vote on legislation.

The District of Columbia was created in 1790 as the seat of the federal government. The federal government moved to the District of Columbia from Philadelphia in 1800. The District of Columbia was originally part of the state of Maryland, but the land was ceded to the federal government in 1790 so that the new federal city could be located on it.

The District of Columbia is not a state, but it is governed by a local government. The District of Columbia has a mayor and a city council. The District of Columbia also has its own police force, fire department, and school system.

The District of Columbia is not a state, but it is treated as if it were one for many purposes. For example, the District of Columbia has its own court system. The District of Columbia also has its own license plates and driver’s licenses. The District of Columbia is also subject to the laws of the United States.

Why Puerto Rico is not a state of the USA?

Puerto Rico is not a state of the USA for a number of reasons.

  • Firstly, Puerto Rico is not contiguous with the rest of the United States, being located in the Caribbean Sea.
  • Secondly, Puerto Rico has a different legal status to the other states, being an unincorporated territory of the United States. This means that Puerto Rico does not have the same level of autonomy as the other states, and is subject to the plenary power of the US Congress.
  • Finally, Puerto Rico has a different cultural and linguistic heritage to the mainland United States, being a former Spanish colony.

There are a number of arguments in favor of Puerto Rico becoming a state of the USA.

  • Puerto Rico is currently treated as a second-class citizen, with its residents not having full voting rights in US elections.
  • Puerto Rico pays taxes to the US government, but does not have voting representation in Congress.
  • Puerto Rico has a population of over 3 million people, which would make it the 31st most populous state in the USA.

However, there are also a number of arguments against Puerto Rico becoming a state.

  • Some argue that Puerto Rico is not economically viable, and would be a burden on the US taxpayer.
  • There are concerns that Puerto Rico would not be able to adequately meet the requirements for statehood, such as having a functioning democracy.
  • There is the concern that Puerto Rico would become a “Trojan Horse” for US enemies, given its strategic location.

Ultimately, the question of whether or not Puerto Rico should become a state of the USA is a complex one, with arguments for and against. What is clear is that the current situation, where Puerto Rico is not a state but is subject to the US Congress, is unsustainable in the long term.

5 Must-Know Facts About the States

  • During the period of 1790-1797, 13 states were ratified by officials. A group of 13 original colonies includes Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island.
  • There are four states whose official names include the word “Commonwealth”, which refers to an English term for a political community founded on the common good. There are four states that make up this list: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Kentucky. 
  • In the U.S., 172 years passed between the creation of the first state and the addition of the last state.
  • The two last states, Alaska and Hawaii, joined the union in 1959.
  • In 1912, New Mexico and Arizona became the first states to join the union. 

List Of 50 States Of America

RankStatePopulation 2022% of USDensity (mi²)
4New York19,223,1915.79%408
9North Carolina 10,807,4913.25%222
11New Jersey 8,870,6852.67%1,206
14 Arizona7,640,7962.30% 67
16 Massachusetts6,922,1072.08% 887
17 Indiana6,842,3852.06%191
18 Missouri6,184,8431.86%90
19 Maryland6,075,3141.83%626
21 Wisconsin5,867,5181.77% 108
23South Carolina5,342,3881.61%178
27Oregon 4,325,2901.30%45
36New Mexico2,109,0930.63%17
39West Virginia1,755,7150.53%73
41New Hampshire1,378,4490.41%154
44Rhode Island1,062,5830.32%1028
46South Dakota902,5420.27%12
47North Dakota774,0080.23%11


Is Hawaii part of the 50 states of the USA?

Yes, Hawaii is one of the 50 states of the United States of America. It became the 50th state on August 21, 1959. Hawaii is located in the central Pacific Ocean and is made up of a group of islands. The largest island is called Hawaii, and the capital is Honolulu. Other well-known islands in Hawaii include Maui, Kauai, and Lanai. People from all over the world come to Hawaii to enjoy its beautiful beaches, tropical climate, and unique culture.

What are the 52 states?

Since 1959, there have been 50 states in the United States of America. In the District of Columbia, there is no state, it is a federal district. As a result, DC and Puerto Rico are included on many lists, bringing the number of “states and other jurisdictions” to 52. There is probably a reason for the myth, isn’t there?  


  1. Smallest State in USA
  2. The most populous state
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