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10 Facts About Colorado

Colorado is the only state in the United States to have ever turned down the opportunity to host the Olympics. In 1972, the state voted against hosting the Winter Olympics due to environmental and financial concerns. They turned down the Winter Olympics again in 1976.

Colorado has the highest elevation of any state in the country, with the highest point being Mount Elbert at 14,440 feet.

The world’s first rodeo was held in Colorado in 1869 in Deer Trail.

Colorado is home to the Great Sand Dunes National Park, which features the tallest sand dunes in North America, rising over 750 feet high.

The highest suspension bridge in the United States is located in Colorado, the Royal Gorge Bridge, which spans 1,270 feet across a canyon.

The first license plate on a car in the United States was issued in Denver, Colorado, in 1908.

Colorado is the only state in the country to have ever had a license plate made out of porcelain.

Colorado is the birthplace of the cheeseburger. The trademark for the name “cheeseburger” was granted in 1935 to Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver.

Colorado is the only state in the country to have a state song that was written by its citizens. “Rocky Mountain High” was written by John Denver and several others in 1972.

The world’s first atomic clock was built in Boulder, Colorado, in 1949.

The Colorado Rockies baseball team is the only major league sports team to have ever played a game at an altitude over 5,000 feet.

Colorado has more microbreweries per capita than any other state in the country.

The town of Nederland, Colorado, celebrates Frozen Dead Guy Days every year, honoring the cryogenic preservation of a man named Bredo Morstoel.

Colorado is the only state to have ever elected an openly gay governor, Jared Polis.

The world’s largest collection of dinosaur bones is located at the Dinosaur National Monument in Colorado.

The world’s largest silver nugget, weighing in at 2,340 pounds, was found in Colorado in 1894.

The highest paved road in the United States is located in Colorado, the Mount Evans Scenic Byway, which reaches an elevation of 14,130 feet.

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10 Weird Facts About Los Angeles

The original name of Los Angeles was “El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles del Río de Porciúncula,” which means “The Town of Our Lady the Queen of the Angels of the Porciuncula River.”

The Hollywood Sign originally read “Hollywoodland” and was an advertisement for a real estate development.

The world’s first movie theater, the Nickelodeon, was opened in Los Angeles in 1902.

The La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles have yielded one of the largest collections of prehistoric fossils in the world.

The Los Angeles freeway system is the largest in the world, spanning over 1,000 miles.

The famous Hollywood Walk of Fame was created in 1958 and features over 2,600 stars.

Los Angeles is the only city in the world to have hosted both the Summer and Winter Olympics.

The Los Angeles County Fair is the largest county fair in the United States.

Los Angeles has a ban on loud, annoying car stereos, and drivers can be ticketed for playing music too loudly.

Reno, Nevada is farther west than Los Angeles.

The iconic Capitol Records building in Los Angeles was designed to look like a stack of vinyl records.

Los Angeles is home to the oldest operating McDonald’s restaurant in the world, which opened in 1940.

The Los Angeles Dodgers were originally called the Brooklyn Dodgers and moved to Los Angeles in 1958.

Los Angeles is the birthplace of the popular street food, the taco truck.

The Beverly Hills Hotel has a secret tunnel that was used by celebrities to enter and exit the hotel discreetly.

The city of Los Angeles was founded in 1781 and was originally part of Mexico before being annexed by the United States in 1848.

The Watts Riots of 1965 were some of the deadliest and most destructive race riots in American history, with 34 people killed and over 1,000 injured.

The Hollywood Bowl is the largest natural outdoor amphitheater in the United States and has been the site of many famous concerts.

Los Angeles has the highest number of museums per capita of any city in the world.

24 percent of Los Angeles is paved.

The Los Angeles River, which is mostly dry, was once a major water source for the city and is featured in many movies and TV shows.

Los Angeles is the birthplace of the shopping cart, which was invented in 1936 by grocery store owner Sylvan Goldman.

The city has a beach called Muscle Beach where famous bodybuilders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger have trained.

Los Angeles was once the largest producer of oil in the world and still has active oil fields within city limits.

Los Angeles is home to the largest Thai community outside of Thailand, and the neighborhood of Thai Town has many Thai restaurants and shops.

Los Angeles has the largest urban park in the United States, Griffith Park, which covers over 4,200 acres.

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10 Weird Facts About California

The state animal of California is the grizzly bear, but they have been extinct in the state since 1922.

The Golden Gate Bridge, located in San Francisco, was painted orange to increase its visibility in foggy weather. However, early in it’s history it was painted in black and yellow stripes.

In 1851, San Francisco had a law that prohibited people from walking across the street while eating ice cream.

California is the only state in the U.S. to have hosted both the Summer and Winter Olympics.

The Hollywood sign originally read “Hollywoodland” and was built in 1923 as an advertisement for a real estate development.

In the 1850s, San Francisco had a municipal law that allowed citizens to legally challenge each other to a duel.

California has the world’s largest three-dimensional map, called the “Earthscape,” which covers an area of over 43,000 square feet.

California is home to the world’s largest thermometer, which stands at 134 feet tall and is located in Baker, California.

California is home to the world’s largest tree by volume, the General Sherman Tree, which is over 2,000 years old.

The Hollywood Walk of Fame features over 2,600 stars honoring celebrities in entertainment.

In 1913, California experienced the highest temperature ever recorded in the United States at Furnace Creek Ranch, reaching 134 degrees Fahrenheit (56.6 Celsius).

San Francisco’s Lombard Street is known as the “crookedest street in the world.”

The first McDonald’s restaurant was opened in San Bernardino, California in 1940.

In 2016, California became the first state to ban the sale of cosmetics tested on animals.

The highest mountain peak in the contiguous United States, Mount Whitney, is located in California. Death Valley, the lowest point in the United States is also in California.

The world’s largest living tree by volume, the General Sherman Tree, is located in Sequoia National Park.

The state motto of California is “Eureka,” which means “I have found it.”

The Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California, was built by the heiress of the Winchester Rifle fortune and features over 160 rooms. She was convinced if she quit adding to the house, she would die.

California has the largest agricultural output of any state in the United States.

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Arkansas has over 600,000 acres of lakes and 9,700 miles of rivers and streams.

The state is home to the world’s largest diamond mine, the Crater of Diamonds State Park.

The first Walmart store opened in Rogers, Arkansas in 1962 and in Bentonville, Arkansas, there is a museum dedicated to the history of Walmart.

The state’s nickname is “The Natural State”.

In Arkansas, it’s illegal to mispronounce the state’s name.

In the town of Gurdon, Arkansas, there is a yearly “Gurdon Light” festival to celebrate an unexplained phenomenon of a strange light that appears in the woods.

In Texarkana, Arkansas, there is a courthouse that straddles the state line between Arkansas and Texas.

Arkansas is the only state in the US where all three types of rocks – igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic – can be found.

In the town of Damascus, Arkansas, there is a yearly festival that features a “Toad Suck” contest, where participants suck up toads and measure how far they can spit them.

Arkansas has a law that makes it illegal to honk your horn at a sandwich shop after 9 PM.

The town of Lake Village, Arkansas, is home to a watermelon festival that features a watermelon seed-spitting contest.

In Arkansas, it is illegal to keep a bear as a pet.

Texarkana is a city that is in both Arkansas and Texas, straddling the border.

The state is home to the world’s largest statue of a watermelon, located in Hope, Arkansas.

Arkansas has the highest percentage of people who walk to work in the United States.

Arkansas is the only state in the U.S. that produces diamonds commercially.

The town of Dardanelle is home to a “Yell Fest” every year, where people compete to see who can yell the loudest.

The town of Mena, Arkansas is home to the “Iron Mountain Festival,” where participants compete in events like an axe-throwing contest and a beard-growing contest.

The town of McGehee is home to the “Great Arkansas Championship Outhouse Races,” where teams compete to see who can push an outhouse on wheels the fastest.

The town of DeQueen is home to the “Rattlesnake Ridge Run,” a 10K race that takes runners through rattlesnake-infested woods.

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Silly Laws

In Switzerland, it is illegal for men to urinate in a standing position after 10pm.

In Mount Pulaski, Illinois, it is illegal for boys to hurl snowballs at trees.

In Harper Woods, Michigan, it is against the law to paint a sparrow and claim it’s a parakeet.

In Evanston, Illinois, it is illegal to change clothes in an automobile with the curtains drawn, unless the car is parked in a garage.

If you live in Kentucky, you must take a bath at least once per year. It’s the law.

In Massachusetts you can’t legally use tomatoes in clam chowder.

It is illegal to wear pants that are ‘form-fitting’ on Sundays in Delaware.

In Idaho, it’s illegal to fish while riding a camel.

You may not legally own a pair of pliers if you live in Texas.

In Galesburg, Illinois, it is illegal to burn bird feathers in public.

In Memphis, Tennessee, a woman cannot legally drive unless there is a man running on foot ahead of her car with a red flag to warn motorists that a woman is driving. Like many of these laws, this one is seldom enforced.

You are violating the law if you mispronounce the name of Arkansas.

In Alabama, it is illegal to wear a fake mustache in church that causes laughter.

In Illinois, a state far removed from any oceans, it is illegal to hunt whales.

In New York City, it is illegal to greet anyone “by placing the end of his thumb against the tip of his nose, at the same time extending and wriggling the fingers of his hand.”

Don’t wiggle while dancing. That’s illegal in California.

In Texas when two trains meet at a crossing “neither shall proceed until the other has gone.”

In the city of Athens, Alabama, it is illegal to walk down the street with an ice cream cone in your back pocket.

In Florida, you can legally fart until 6pm.

Vibrators cannot legally be sold in the American states of Mississippi and Alabama.

In Alabama, it is illegal to flick a booger into the wind.

If you should choose to have sex with a porcupine in Florida, you should be aware that you’re breaking the law.

It Swaziland, Women should be very careful about wearing pants in public. Members of the military are allowed to tear the woman’s pants off.

If you happen to own a bar in Oklahoma, watch out for people pretending to have sexual intercourse with a buffalo. If you allow that, you are breaking the law.

In Utah, you may not legally have sexual intercourse in an ambulance while it is on its way to an emergency.

In Ohio, no more than five women can live in one house. (Because it would then be assumed to be a house of prostitution.)

According to the law in Indonesia, the punishment for masturbating is decapitation. This law is seldom enforced.

In Chicago, it is illegal to fish while sitting on a giraffe’s neck.

In Alabama, it is illegal to drive a vehicle while blindfolded.

When Peter the Great, who couldn’t grow a respectable beard, was in power, any Russian who had a beard was required to pay a beard tax.

During the 1920’s there was a law in Russia that all private automobiles (not ones used by the government) had to have a yellow stripe painted all the way around the whole body.

There is an actual court case on record named: “The United States v. 350 Cartons of Canned Sardines.” It has something to do with interstate commerce.

In Illinois, prison inmates were offered free plastic surgery to change their faces. Of those who elected to become “new men” their rate of committing new crimes after release was less than average.

In Kansas it is legal to round off pi from somewhere around 3.14159265 to 3.0.

It was illegal to teach evolution in Tennessee until 1968.

There is a man whose official name has been legally changed to Mr. 1069.

In Peoria, Illinois, it is illegal to give a lighted cigar to a pet.

According to one source, in Idaho it is illegal to give your lover a box of candy smaller than fifty pounds in weight. Another source stated that it is illegal to give any other citizen a box of candy weighing more than 50 pounds. In any case, the giving of huge quantities of candy is regulated in Idaho.

There is a law against shooting rabbits from a New York City trolley car.

In Chaseville, New York, you may not “drive a goat past a church in a ridiculous fashion.”

In New York City is a special court that hears about 400 complaints per day against taxi drivers. Since the cabbies in the Big Apple carry approximately 400,000 people per day, that means about one in every thousand passengers feels the need to bring a complaint against a driver. Overheard in court recently: A cab driver who had recently immigrated from Pakistan was in court because he punched a passenger. Asked why, the driver said, “In my country women aren’t allowed to speak disrespectfully to a man.” Many cabbies do not like this court because they have to waste hours waiting for their case to come up. In one case, a professor from Columbia University took a cab driver to court because he had made a face when he discovered the tip was a small one.

The U.S. Navy will not accept anyone with an obscene tattoo.

All gondolas must be black in Venice. Only government officials are allowed fancy colors.

In Oklahoma, it’s illegal for a baseball player to hit the ball out of the park.

Do not burn “offal” or bones, or grow ragweed in New York City. These are legal offenses.

It is illegal in Arizona to hunt camels.

The following are bits excerpted from a book, itself almost one hundred years old:

THE FAMOUS CONNECTICUT BLUE LAWS. – These laws, enacted by the people of the “Dominion of New Haven,” became known as the blue laws because they were printed on blue paper. They were as follows: –

The governor and magistrates convened in general assembly are the supreme power, under God, of the independent dominion. From the determination of the assembly no appeal shall be made.

No one shall be a freeman or have a vote unless he is converted and a member of one of the churches allowed in the dominion.

Each freeman shall swear by the blessed God to bear true allegiance to this dominion and that Jesus is the only king.

No dissenter from the essential worship of this dominion shall be allowed to give a vote for electing of magistrates or any officer.

No food or lodging shall be offered to a heretic.

No one shall cross a river on the Sabbath but authorized clergymen.

No one shall travel, cook victuals, make beds, sweep houses, cut hair, or shave on the Sabbath Day.

No one shall kiss his or her children on the Sabbath or feasting days.

The Sabbath Day shall begin at sunset Saturday.

Whoever wears clothes trimmed with gold, silver, or bone lace above one shilling per yard shall be presented by the grand jurors and the selectmen shall tax the estate L300.

Whoever brings cards or dice into the dominion shall pay a fine of L5.

No one shall eat mince pies, dance, play cards, or play any instrument of music except the drum, trumpet, or jews harp.

No gospel minister shall join people in marriage. The magistrate may join them, as he may do it with less scandal to Christ’s church.

When parents refuse their children convenient marriages, the magistrate shall determine the point.

A man who strikes his wife shall be fined ten pounds.

A woman who strikes her husband shall be punished as the law directs.

No man shall court a maid in person or by letter without obtaining the consent of her parents; L5 penalty for the first offense; L10 for the second, and for the third imprisonment during the pleasure of the court.

MASSACHUSETTS BLUE-LAWS. – In regard to the so-called “blue-laws” of Massachusetts it is difficult to determine just where the line between fact and fancy is to be drawn. It is claimed that the founders of Connecticut borrowed most of their laws and judicial proceedings from Massachusetts. Many of these laws were enacted previous to 1640, and a number were the orders and sentences of the Massachusetts Court of Assistants and General Court. For instance, one order we find is as follows: “It is ordered, that all Rich. Clough’s strong water shall presently be seazed upon, for his selling greate quantytie thereof to several men servants, which was the occasion of much disorder, drunkeness, and misdemeanor.

Another record, in March 1631, is to the effect that “Nieh. Knopp is fyned 5L for takeing upon him to cure the scurvey, by a water of noe worth nor value, which he solde at a very deare rate, to be imprisoned till hee pay his fine or give securitye for it, or else to be whipped; and shall be lyable to any man’s action of whome he hath received money for the said water.

In September 1636: Robert Shorthose, for swearing by the bloud of God, was sentenced to have his tongue put into a cleft stick, and to stand so by the space of haulfe an houre. – from The Century Book of Facts, 1900

When Marquis de Pelier whistled at Queen Marie Antoinette, he was promptly thrown in jail and kept there for fifty years.

Four hundred years ago in Turkey drinking coffee was illegal. The sentence: death.

Anyone caught drunk in public in ancient China was put to death.

In 1871, James MacAndrew was the Chief Executive of Otago, New Zealand. He was ordered to go to debtors’ prison. So, he declared a law that his home was a prison.

Very important for those in Los Angeles: If you herd more than 2,000 sheep along Hollywood Blvd, you’re breaking the law. And, while you’re at it, don’t drive your car along Hollywood Blvd. more than twice in four hours. That, too, is illegal.

Do not stick your finger in the nose of a cow, unless you are willing to violate one of the rules of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association.

In Saudi Arabia it has been against the law to play music until recently.

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Alabama is the only state to have an alcoholic beverage as its official state drink, the Conecuh Ridge Whiskey.

In 1901, the first 10 football helmets were made in the city of Dayton, Alabama.

Alabama is home to the world’s largest cast iron statue, the Vulcan Statue, which stands at 56 feet tall.

Mobile, Alabama is the birthplace of Mardi Gras in the United States.

The first electric trolley system in the world was established in Montgomery, Alabama in 1886.

In Alabama, it is illegal to wear a fake mustache in church that causes laughter.

The world’s largest office chair is located in Anniston, Alabama, standing at 33 feet tall and 31 feet wide.

In Alabama, it is illegal to flick a booger into the wind.

Alabama has more inland waterways than any other state in the United States.

The first 911 call in the United States was made in Haleyville, Alabama in 1968.

The state of Alabama has more species of freshwater fish than any other state in the country.

The town of Enterprise, Alabama is home to the world’s largest statue of an insect, a 17-foot-tall boll weevil.

The largest annual celebration of the arts, the Kentuck Festival of the Arts, is held in Northport, Alabama.

The city of Muscle Shoals, Alabama is known as the “Hit Recording Capital of the World” due to the number of hit records that have been recorded there.

In Alabama, it is illegal to drive a vehicle while blindfolded.

The world’s first known gold leafing in artwork was discovered in the state of Alabama.

The Alabama Shakespeare Festival in Montgomery is one of the largest and most prestigious Shakespeare festivals in the world.

The Tuskegee Airmen, the first African American military aviators in the United States, trained in Tuskegee, Alabama.

In the city of Athens, Alabama, it is illegal to walk down the street with an ice cream cone in your back pocket.

Alabama is home to the world’s largest cast-iron skillet, located in Birmingham, which weighs in at 100,000 pounds.

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Surprising Facts in US Politics

In 2018, the mayor of a small town in Pennsylvania was re-elected despite having died a month prior to the election.

In 2016, the town of Whitefish, Montana declared a state of emergency due to an influx of wealthy celebrities and political figures.

The Mayor of Hell, Michigan, offered to rename the town “Gay Hell” in 2019 to protest the Trump administration’s stance on LGBTQ+ rights.

The 2016 US Presidential Election saw a record number of write-in votes for “Harambe,” a gorilla who had been killed earlier that year.

In 2020, rapper Kanye West announced he was running for president, although he did not qualify for the ballot in all states.

In 2017, a politician in Maine suggested using guillotines to execute drug dealers.

In 2018, a Democratic candidate for Congress in Virginia admitted to being a former CIA operative who had been abducted by aliens.

A 2017 poll found that 17% of respondents believed that “lizard people” control the world’s governments.

In 2019, a Republican candidate for Congress in California claimed to have been involved in a covert military mission to stop a “child sex trafficking ring” on Mars.

In 2020, a Democratic candidate for Congress in Florida claimed to have been abducted by aliens and had sex with extraterrestrial beings.

In 2020, President Trump suggested that injecting disinfectant could be a potential treatment for COVID-19, prompting widespread criticism from medical professionals.

In 2018, a Democratic candidate for Congress in Arizona dropped out of the race after it was revealed that she had previously worked as a stripper.

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Women During World War II

Pictured above, Rosie the Riveter, famous ship builder in the Alameda, California shipyard. The Rosie the Riveter campaign encouraged women to take jobs in manufacturing to support the war effort.

Fifteen million Americans joined the armed forces during WWII. One out of every 50 people in the military were women (300,000). Since so many men were participating in the war, many women who stayed home did jobs that had previously been considered men’s work. It was not uncommon to find female welders, garbage collectors, truck drivers, and general laborers during the early 1940s.

Approximately 350,000 American women served in the armed forces during World War II.
Women who served in the military during WWII were initially not given military rank or benefits.

Women were initially barred from combat roles but served in a variety of support roles such as clerks, nurses, and radio operators.

The Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) program was established in 1942 to train women to fly military aircraft for non-combat missions. Over 1,000 women served in the WASP program, flying over 60 million miles during the war.

Women also worked in munitions factories, shipyards, and other industries supporting the war effort.

Women were also involved in espionage and code-breaking during WWII.

Over 640,000 British women served in the armed forces and in civilian support roles during WWII.

Women in the Soviet Union made up 800,000 of the 2.5 million soldiers who served in combat roles during the war, so approximately one in three Soviet soldiers were women.

Soviet sniper Lyudmila Pavlichenko was credited with 309 kills during WWII, making her the most successful female sniper in history.

The Indian National Army formed by Subhas Chandra Bose during WWII had an all-female regiment called the Rani of Jhansi Regiment.

Australian nurses were among the prisoners of war captured by Japanese forces during the war.

Women in France served in various roles, including resistance fighters and members of the French Forces of the Interior.

One of the most famous resistance fighters was Josephine Baker who grew up street performing from a young age in New Orleans. She had a dance style while sometimes singing or playing a trombone that was rather quick and angular. Some say she was the inventor of hip hop. Due to racial discrimination, she moved to France where she became one of the biggest stars in Europe. Josephine liked to perform essentially nude, wearing only a ring of bananas as a skirt, which her audiences loved. Leveraging her social position, she was able to smuggle many German secrets into the hands of French intelligence.

Many women who served in WWII faced discrimination and harassment upon their return to civilian life. It wasn’t until the 1970s that laws were passed to grant them equal rights and recognition for their service.