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11 Letter States

North Dakota & South Dakota

Both North Dakota and South Dakota were named after the Dakota people, a group of Native Americans who had been living in the area long before white settlers arrived. The region was originally the Dakota Territory. It was originally going to become one state in the 19th century, but it was split into North and South Dakota for political reasons when the territory became two states in 1889.

Mississippi

Mississippi is one of many states that gets its name from a Native American word. The Ojibwe tribe called the Mississippi River Misi-ziibi, meaning "great river." When French explorers arrived in the 17th century, they wrote the river's name as "Mississippi." This name was used by the British in the 18th century.

After the Revolutionary War, the territory became part of the United States. It was named the Mississippi Territory, as the term "Mississippi" had come to refer to the entire region rather than just the river. It retained this name when it became a state in 1817.

Connecticut

Connecticut is yet another state that is named after a Native American word. The Mohegan-Pequot word that "Connecticut" comes from is "Quononoquett." This word means "long tidal river." As with many other states, the name comes from one of the major rivers in the state, the Connecticut River.

Part of Connecticut was originally part of the Dutch colony New Netherland. It became part of the British Connecticut Colony in 1636. Connecticut was one of the 13 colonies that declared independence in 1776 and contested the Revolutionary War with England. After the United States won the Revolutionary War, Connecticut became a state under the same name in 1788.

Rhode Island

Rhode Island used to have the longest name of any state in America. Until 2020, the state's official name was "State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations." However, the state was commonly known simply as Rhode Island. In 2020, the state's name was officially shortened to simply "Rhode Island."

Rhode Island was originally four different settlements, including a settlement on what was then called "Rhode Island" but is now called "Aquidneck Island." It is unclear where the name "Rhode Island" came from, but many believe it was derived from the Greek island of Rhodes.

When Rhode Island became a colony in 1643, it was known simply as the "Colony of Providence Plantations." Its name was changed to the "Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations" in 1663, and this became the "State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations" in 1790 when the area became an American state. The "and Providence Plantations" part of the name was removed in 2020 due to the racially sensitive connotation of the world "plantations."

11 Letter States

11 Letter States