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The Regions of the United States | Facts & Statistics

Florida, the "Sunshine State"
Abbreviation: FL

Florida Flag
State Flag
Florida Seal
State Seal

Florida was named by the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León in 1513. He called the region "La Florida", roughly translated as Land of the Flowers. He probably chose this name because he was impressed by the many colorful flowers and because he sighted it on Easter, which is called "Pascua Florida" in Spanish. Ponce de Leon, in search of the elusive fountain of youth, was the first European to explore Florida. Statehood for Florida came in 1845 (27th state). St. Augustine, founded by the Spanish in 1565, is the oldest permanent European settlement in the continental United States. Florida is one of the leading tourist states in the United States. Great stretches of sandy beaches and a warm, sunny climate make Florida a year-round vacationland. People enjoy swimming, fishing and water skiing in the inland and coastal waters. Major attractions include Disney World, Miami Beach, the Everglades National Park and the Florida Keys. Tourists may also visit historic sites that date back to the Spanish explorers.

Der spanische Entdecker Juan Ponce de León nannte die Region des heutigen Florida "La Florida" (Land der Blumen), da er vermutlich von den vielen farbenfrohen Blumen beeindruckt war. Ferner erreichte er es zu Ostern, das spanisch "Pascua Florida" genannt wird. Ponce de Leon, auf seiner Suche nach dem Jugendbrunnen, war der erste europäische Erkunder Floridas. 1845 wurde Florida der 27. Bundesstaat. Die 1565 von Spanien gegründete Stadt St. Augustine ist die älteste europäische Siedlung in den Vereinigten Staaten. Florida gehört zu den führenden Urlaubsstaaten der USA. Lange Sandstrände und ein warmes, sonniges Klima machen Florida zu einem Urlaubsort für das ganze Jahr. Die Binnengewässer und die Küste laden zum Schwimmen, Angeln und Wasserskifahren ein. Die größten Besuchermagneten sind Disney World, Miami Beach, der Everglades Nationalpark und die Florida Keys. Der Besucher findet außerdem historische Stätten, die bis in die Zeit der spanischen Entdecker zurückreichen.

Governor: Charlie Crist, R (Jan. 2007 to Jan. 2011)
Senators: Bill Nelson, D (to Jan. 2013); Mel Martinez, R (to Jan. 2011)
House of Representatives: 25 districts | Search by zip code

Population (July 2005): 17,790,000
; National Rank: 4; Percent change since April 2000: 11.3%
Land Area: 54,153 sq mi. (140,256 sq km); National Rank: 22
10 largest cities (2005 est): Jacksonville, 782,623; Miami, 386,417; Tampa, 325,989; St. Petersburg, 249,079; Hialeah, 220,485; Orlando, 213,223; Fort Lauderdale, 167,380; Tallahassee, 158,500; Pembroke Pines, 150,380; Hollywood, 145,629

Total Gross State Product 2005 prel. (billions of current dollars): 674.0
Per Capita Personal Income 2005:
$33,219; National Rank: 23
State Exports 2005 (millions of dollars):
33,377; National Rank: 8
Citrus, vegetables, nursery stock, cattle, sugarcane, dairy products.
Industry: Tourism, electric equipment, food processing, printing and publishing, transportation equipment, machinery.

State of Florida: Official State Homepage
· Project VoteSmart
State and Local Government on the Internet

· Florida Profile - Fedstats
· U.S. Census Bureau: 2000 Data for the State of Florida
· U.S. Census Bureau: State Data Centers: Florida

· Florida - Regional Accounts Data

· State Profiles
· Florida

Florida State Tourist Office
· Florida State Parks
Map (MapQuest)

For High School Students
· Explore the States (Library of Congress)
· Florida Kids Page (Florida Division of Historical Resources)
· Florida Symbols
(Florida Division of Historical Resources)
State Reports: Florida (
· Stately Knowledge (The Internet Public Library)

For Teachers
Florida Memory Project: Online Classroom
Pro Teacher: Lessons by State: Florida

Link Lists

· Florida (Google)
· Florida (Yahoo)
· Federal, State & Local Government Site

Texts are abridged from U.S. State Department IIP publications and other U.S. government materials.
Any reference obtained from this server to a specific commercial product, process, or service does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the United States Government of the product, process, or service, or its producer or provider. The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government.
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Updated: May 2008