The United States of America (USA), commonly referred to as the United States (US), America, or simply the States, is a federal republic consisting of 50 states, 16 territories, a federal district, and various overseas extraterritorial jurisdictions. The 48 contiguous states and the federal district of Washington, D.C., are in central North America between Canada and Mexico. The state of Alaska is the northwestern part of North America and the state of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific. The country also has five populated and nine unpopulated territories in the Pacific and the Caribbean. At 3.79 million square miles (9.83 million km2) in total and with around 316 million people, the United States is the fourth-largest country by total area and third largest by population. It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many countries. The geography and climate of the United States is also extremely diverse, and it is home to a wide variety of wildlife.
Paleo-indians migrated from Asia to what is now the US mainland around 15,000 years ago, with European colonization beginning in the 16th century. The United States emerged from 13 British colonies located along the Atlantic seaboard. Disputes between Great Britain and these colonies led to the American Revolution. On July 4, 1776, delegates from the 13 colonies unanimously issued the Declaration of Independence. The ensuing war ended in 1783 with the recognition of independence of the United States from the Kingdom of Great Britain, and was the first successful war of independence against a European colonial empire. The current Constitution was adopted on September 17, 1787. The first 10 amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, were ratified in 1791 and guarantee many fundamental civil rights and freedoms.
Orange County is a county located in the U.S. state of Florida. It is the center of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). As of 2010, the county has a population of 1,145,956.
The land that is Orange County was part of the first land to emerge from below the Early Oligocene sea 33.9–28.4 million years ago and is known as Orange Island. Orange County's Rock Spring location is a Pleistocene fossil bearing area and has yielded a vast variety of birds and mammals including giant sloth; mammoth; camel; and the Dire Wolf dating around 1.1 million years ago.
Lake County is a county located in the state of Florida, United States. As of the 2010 Census, the population was 297,052. The Census Bureau estimated the population in 2012 to be 303,186. Its county seat is Tavares, and its largest city is Clermont. Lake County is part of the Orlando-Kissimmee, Florida, Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Osceola County (//, o-si-OH-lə) is a county located in the U.S. state of Florida. The U.S. Census Bureau's 2010 population estimate for the county is 268,685, making it the 17th fastest-growing county in the United States. Its county seat is Kissimmee.
Osceola County is named for the Indian leader Osceola, whose name means "Black Drink Cry [Asi Yaholo]".
Seminole County (//, SEM-i-nohl) is a county in the U.S. state of Florida. Located between Orange County to the south and Volusia County to the north, it is part of the Greater Orlando metropolitan area. Its county seat and largest city is Sanford. As of the 2010 Census, Seminole County's population was 422,718, a 15.75% increase from 2000.
Orlando // is a city in the central region of the U.S. state of Florida. It is the county seat of Orange County, and the center of the Greater Orlando metropolitan area. According to the 2010 US Census, the city had a population of 238,300, making Orlando the 79th largest city in the United States. The Greater Orlando metropolitan area has a population of 2,134,411, making it the 26th largest metro area in the United States, the sixth largest metro area in the Southeastern United States, and the third largest metro area in the state of Florida. Orlando is the fifth largest city in Florida, and the state's largest inland city.
Orlando is nicknamed "The City Beautiful" and its symbol is the fountain at Lake Eola. The current mayor is Buddy Dyer. The city is also sometimes nicknamed "The Theme Park Capital of the World", as it is best known for the Walt Disney World Resort (located approximately 21 miles (34 km) southwest of Downtown Orlando in Lake Buena Vista), opened by the Walt Disney Company in 1971, the Universal Orlando Resort (which consists of two parks, Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure, as well as other attractions, including City Walk), SeaWorld, Gatorland, and Wet 'n Wild Water Park. With the exception of Walt Disney World, most major attractions are located along International Drive. The city's famous attractions form the backbone of Orlando's tourism industry, making the city the most visited American city in 2009. The city is also one of the busiest American cities for conferences and conventions. Like other major cities in the Sun Belt, Orlando grew rapidly during the 1980s and well into the first decade of the 21st century. Orlando is also home to the University of Central Florida, which is the second-largest university campus in the United States in terms of enrollment (as of 2012).
Downtown Orlando is the historic core and central business district of Orlando, Florida, United States. It is bordered by East Marks St in the north, Mills Ave in the east, Orange Blossom Trail (US Hwy 441) in the west, and Kaley Ave in the south. There are five enclaves in downtown; "Uptown" in the north around Lake Ivanhoe, "Lake Eola Heights" and "Thornton Park" in the east around Lake Eola, "Parramore" in the west, and the "Central Business District" (or the "Financial District") between Colonial Dr and Lake Lucerne in the center. In 2010, the estimated population of downtown is 44,300. The daytime population is estimated to be 65,000. The 5 mile radius population of downtown is 265,100.
Downtown Orlando is the largest of urban centers in Central Florida. It is home to residential and commercial towers; local, state, and federal government offices; sports facilities; performing arts theaters; art galleries; a movie theater; retail; nightclubs; and parks. Downtown is removed from the tourist areas located in the southern half of the city; but does draw a significant number of visitors seeking to experience the "Real Orlando". It is also the location of numerous festivals, parades, political demonstrations, and other high-profile events year-round.
Murry S. King (1870–1925) (often spelled "Murray") was Florida's first registered architect, a noted American architect with a successful practice in Orlando, Florida, in the 1910s and 1920s.
King was born on July 13, 1870 in East Deer Township, Allegheny County, near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the son of Robert and Mary King. He moved to Orlando from Pennsylvania in 1904.
Much of the state of Florida is situated on a peninsula between the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Straits of Florida. Spanning two time zones, it extends to the northwest into a panhandle along the northern Gulf of Mexico. It is bordered on the north by the states of Georgia and Alabama, and on the west, at the end of the panhandle, by Alabama. It is near The Bahamas and several Caribbean countries, particularly Cuba. Florida's extensive coastline made it a perceived target during World War II, so the government built airstrips throughout the state; today, approximately 400 airports are still in service. According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, Florida has 131 public airports, and more than 700 private airports, airstrips, heliports, and seaplane bases. Florida is one of the largest states east of the Mississippi River, and only Alaska and Michigan are larger in water area.
At 345 feet (105 m) above mean sea level, Britton Hill in northern Walton County is the highest point in Florida and the lowest highpoint of any U.S. state. Much of the state south of Orlando is low-lying and fairly level; however, some places, such as Clearwater, feature vistas that rise 50 to 100 feet (15 to 30 m) above the water. Much of Central and North Florida, typically 25 miles (40 km) or more away from the coastline, features rolling hills with elevations ranging from 100 to 250 feet (30 to 76 m). The highest point in peninsular Florida, Sugarloaf Mountain, is a 312-foot (95 m) peak in Lake County. Much of Florida has an elevation of less than 12 feet (3.7 m), including many populated areas such as Miami which are located on the coast. Miami and other parts of south Florida are the most vulnerable regions in the world to rising sea levels associated with global warming.
Greater Orlando, commonly referred to as the Orlando metropolitan area, Metro Orlando, and for U.S. Census purposes as the Orlando–Kissimmee–Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area, is a metropolitan area in the central region of the U.S. state of Florida. Its principal cities are Orlando, Kissimmee and Sanford. The U.S. Office of Management and Budget defines it as consisting of the counties of Lake, Orange (including Orlando), Osceola, and Seminole.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the population of Greater Orlando is 2,134,411, an increase of 51,990 new residents between 2009 and 2010. By population, it is the third-largest metropolitan area in Florida, the fifth-largest in the southeastern United States, and the 26th largest in the United States. The MSA encompasses 4,012 square miles (10,400 km2) square miles of total area (both land and water areas).