California is a state in the Pacific Region of the United States. With over 39.3million residents across a total area of approximately 163,696 square miles (423,970 km2), it is the most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area, as well as the world's thirty-fourth-most-populous subnational entity. California is also the most populated subnational entity in North America, and has its state capital in Sacramento. The Greater Los Angeles area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and fifth-most-populous urban regions, with more than 18.7million and 9.6million residents respectively. Los Angeles is California's most populous city, and the country's second-most-populous, after New York City. California also has the nation's most populous county, Los Angeles County, and its largest county by area, San Bernardino County. The City and County of San Francisco is both the country's second most densely populated major city after New York City and the fifth-most-densely populated county, behind only four of the five New York City boroughs.
California's economy, with a gross state product of $3.2trillion as of 2019, is the largest sub-national economy in the world. If it were a country, California would be the fifth-largest economy in the world, and the 37th-most populous . The Greater Los Angeles area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and third-largest urban economies ($1.3trillion and $1.0trillion respectively ), after the New York metropolitan area ($2.0trillion). The San Francisco Bay Area Combined Statistical Area had the nation's highest gross domestic product per capita in 2018 ($106,757) among large primary statistical areas, and is home to four of the world's ten largest companies by market capitalization and four of the world's ten richest people.
California is considered a global trendsetter in popular culture, communication, information, innovation, environmentalism, economics, politics, and entertainment. As a result of the state's diversity and migration, California integrates foods, languages, and traditions from other areas across the country and around the globe. It is considered the origin of the hippie counterculture, beach and car culture, the Internet, and the personal computer, among others. The San Francisco Bay Area and the Greater Los Angeles Area are widely seen as centers of the global technology and entertainment industries, respectively. California's economy is very diverse: 58% of it is based on finance, government, real estate services, technology, and professional, scientific, and technical business services. Although it accounts for only 1.5% of the state's economy, California's agriculture industry has the highest output of any U.S. state.
California shares a border with Oregon to the north, Nevada and Arizona to the east, and the Mexican state of Baja California to the south. The state's diverse geography ranges from the Pacific Coast in the west to the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the east, and from the redwood and Douglas fir forests in the northwest to the Mojave Desert in the southeast. The Central Valley, a major agricultural area, dominates the state's center. Although California is well-known for its warm Mediterranean climate and monsoon seasonal weather, the large size of the state results in climates that vary from moist temperate rainforest in the north to arid desert in the interior, as well as snowy alpine in the mountains. All these factors lead to an enormous demand for water; in total numbers, California is the largest consumer of water in North America. Over time, drought and wildfires have become more frequent; further straining California's water security. (Full article...)
A color lithograph of the Winfield Scott
The Winfield Scott
was a sidewheel steamer
that transported passengers and cargo between San Francisco
, California, and Panama
in the early 1850s, during the California Gold Rush
. After entering a heavy fog
off the coast of Southern California on the evening of December 1, 1853, the ship crashed into Middle Anacapa Island
. ll 450 passengers and crew survived, but the ship was lost.
The Winfield Scott has been the object of numerous salvage operations since the crash, and currently rests underwater as part of the Channel Islands National Park and Marine Sanctuary. The wreck site of the Winfield Scott is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The discovery of gold at Sutter's Mill in 1848 brought thousands of people to California in search of fortune until the late 1850s. Since neither the Panama Canal nor the First Transcontinental Railroad had been constructed, people emigrating to California from the Eastern United States had three main routes of passage. They could travel over land, which was expensive and dangerous, or they could sail the roughly 14,000-mile route around South America. This was more attractive to some but no less dangerous, due in part to the rough waters of the Drake Passage. In addition to the inherent dangers of either route, the journey often took as long as six months to complete. (Full article...)
- Senators: Dianne Feinstein (D), Kamala Harris (D)
- Representatives: Doug LaMalfa (R), Jared Huffman (D), John Garamendi (D), Tom McClintock (R), Mike Thompson (D), Doris Matsui (D), Ami Bera (D), Paul Cook (R), Jerry McNerney (D), Josh Harder (D), Mark DeSaulnier (D), Nancy Pelosi (D), Barbara Lee (D), Jackie Speier (D), Eric Swalwell (D), Jim Costa (D), Ro Khanna (D), Anna Eshoo (D), Zoe Lofgren (D), Jimmy Panetta (D), TJ Cox (D), Devin Nunes (R), Kevin McCarthy (R), Salud Carbajal (D), Katie Hill (D), Julia Brownley (D), Judy Chu (D), Adam Schiff (D), Tony Cardenas (D), Brad Sherman (D), Pete Aguilar (D), Grace Napolitano (D), Ted Lieu (D), Jimmy Gomez (D), Norma Torres (D), Raul Ruiz (D), Karen Bass (D), Linda Sanchez (D), Gil Cisneros (D), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D), Mark Takano (D), Ken Calvert (R), Maxine Waters (D), Nanette Barragán (D), Katie Porter (D), Lou Correa (D), Alan Lowenthal (D), Harley Rouda (D), Mike Levin (D), Duncan Hunter (R). Juan Vargas (D), Scott Peters (D), Susan Davis (D)
- Total area: 163,696 mi2
- Land: 156,002 mi2
- Water: 7,694 mi2
- Highest elevation: 14,505 ft (Mount Whitney)
- Population 39,250,017 (2016 est)
- Admission to the Union: September 9, 1850 (31st)