The Southern United States—commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South—is an area comprising the southeastern and south-central United States. The region is known for its culture and history, having developed its own customs, musical styles and varied cuisines that have helped distinguish it in some ways from the rest of the United States. The Southern ethnic heritage is diverse and includes strong European (mostly English, Scotch-Irish and Scottish), African, and some Native American components. Several Southern states (Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia) were English Colonies that sent delegates to sign the Declaration of Independence and then fought against the English along with the Northern Colonists during the Revolutionary War. The basis for much Southern culture derives from the pride in these states being among the 13 original colonies (and much of the population of the South had fore-fathers who emigrated west from these colonies). Manners and customs reflect the early population of the South's relationship with England as well as that of Africa and to some extent the native populations.
Some other aspects of the historical and cultural development of the South have been influenced by an early support for the doctrine of states' rights, the institution of slave labor on plantations in the Lower South; the presence of a large proportion of African Americans in the population; and the legacy of the Civil War and Reconstruction Era, as seen in thousands of lynchings (mostly from 1880 to 1930), the segregated system of separate schools and public facilities known as "Jim Crow", that lasted until the 1960s, and the widespread use of poll taxes and other methods to frequently deny blacks of the right to vote or hold office until the 1960s. In more modern times, however, the South has become the most integrated region of the country and race-relations on par with those elsewhere. Since the late 1960s blacks have held and currently hold many high offices, such as mayor and police chief, in many cities such as Atlanta and New Orleans.]better source needed[
The Confederate States of America (CSA), commonly referred to as the Confederate States (CS) or the Confederacy, was a government set up in 1861 by seven slave states of the Lower South that had declared their secession from the United States following the November 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln. Those seven states created a "confederacy" in February 1861 before Lincoln took office in March, and four of the Upper South were admitted after war began in April. The Confederacy later accepted two additional states as members (Missouri and Kentucky) although neither officially declared secession nor was ever controlled by Confederate forces.
The United States government (the Union) rejected secession and the Confederacy as illegal. The American Civil War began with the 1861 Confederate attack upon Fort Sumter, a fort in the Charleston, South Carolina, harbor, which was claimed by both sides. By 1865, after very heavy fighting, largely on Confederate soil, CSA forces were defeated and the Confederacy collapsed. No foreign nation officially recognized the Confederacy as an independent country, but several had granted belligerent status.
The Eastern United States or the American East, is today defined by some as the states east of the Mississippi River]citation needed[, and is traditionally divided by the Ohio River and Appalachian Mountains into the South, the Old Northwest and the Northeast. The first two tiers of states west of the Mississippi have traditionally been considered part of the West, but can be amalgamated with states of the Old Northwest into what the Census Bureau defines as the Midwestern United States. It has been considered part of the Eastern United States in regional models that exclude a Central region.]clarification needed[
As of 2011, the estimated population of the 26 states east of the Mississippi (not including the small portions of Minnesota and Louisiana that are east of the river) plus the District of Columbia totals 179,948,346 out of 308,745,358 in the whole nation (excluding the territory of Puerto Rico), or 58.28% of the U.S. population.
Louisiana French (LF) (French: français de la Louisiane, Louisiana Creole: Françé La Lwizyann) refers to the group of French dialects spoken in the U.S. state of Louisiana, and formerly elsewhere in colonial Lower Louisiana. It comprises several distinct varieties. Figures from the United States Census report that roughly 3.5% of Louisianans over the age of 5 were claimed to speak French or a French-based creole in their homes.
The most widely spoken form of Louisiana French is Cajun French, sometimes known as Louisiana Regional French. It developed after the arrival of Acadian migrants during the Great Upheaval of the 18th century. A prestige dialect known as Colonial or Plantation Society French was formerly prominent, but has now largely been subsumed into the Cajun dialect. Additionally, Louisiana Creole French is a related creole language.
New Orleans–Metairie-Kenner Metropolitan Statistical Area, or the Greater New Orleans Region (as it is often called by the Louisiana Tourism Commission) is a metropolitan area designated by the United States Census encompassing eight parishes (the Louisiana equivalent of other states' counties) in the state of Louisiana, centering on the city of New Orleans. As of the April 1, 2012 estimate, the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) had a population of 1,227,096. The New Orleans-Metairie-Hammond combined statistical area (CSA), a ten-parish area, had a population of 1,452,502. The metropolitan area was hit by Hurricane Katrina – once a Category 5 but a Category 3 storm at landfall – in August 2005. Within the city of New Orleans proper, multiple breaches and structural failures occurred in the system of levees and floodwalls designed under federal government auspices. The resulting decline in the city's population negatively impacted population numbers for the entire metro area, for which a population of 1.3 million was recorded in the 2000 Census. Most of the decline in population is accounted for by the decline in population experienced in the city of New Orleans proper (coterminous with Orleans Parish); the Census Bureau estimates that the city's population dropped from 453,728 prior to the storm (July 1, 2005) to 369,250 at the most recent estimate for 2012.
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Local government is a form of public administration which in a majority of contexts, exists as the lowest tier of administration within a given state. The term is used to contrast with offices at state level, which are referred to as the central government, national government, or (where appropriate) federal government and also to supranational government which deals with governing institutions between states. Local governments generally act within powers delegated to them by legislation or directives of the higher level of government. In federal states, local government generally comprises the third (or sometimes fourth) tier of government, whereas in unitary states, local government usually occupies the second or third tier of government, often with greater powers than higher-level administrative divisions.
The question of municipal autonomy is a key question of public administration and governance. The institutions of local government vary greatly between countries, and even where similar arrangements exist, the terminology often varies. Common names for local government entities include state, province, region, department, county, prefecture, district, city, township, town, borough, parish, municipality, shire and village.