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Lower 48 States

The United States is made up of 50 states, but 48 states – also known as the conterminous states, the lower 48, or the contiguous states – are adjoined.

Two of the states – Alaska and Hawaii – are not part of the lower 48 states. This is because Alaska is separated by British Columbia, Canada, and Hawaii is an island. Washington, D.C., is also part of the contiguous United States, although it is not an official state. The contiguous United States is not to be confused with the continental U.S., which includes the state of Alaska.

The lower 48 states, along with D.C., have an area of over 3.1 million square miles. Water makes up over 160,000 square miles or over 62% of the world’s total water area. The remainder is land area and is similar to the size of Australia.

Based on census data from 2010, over 306 million people live in the contiguous United States. This makes up over 99% of the country’s total population. The population density of just the lower 48 states is over 103 people per square mile.

Lower 48 States

State 2022 Pop.
Alabama4,949,697
Arizona7,640,796
Arkansas3,042,017
California39,664,128
Colorado5,961,083
Connecticut3,546,588
Delaware998,619
Florida22,177,997
Georgia10,936,299
Idaho1,896,652
Illinois12,518,071
Indiana6,842,385
Iowa3,174,426
Kansas2,919,179
Kentucky4,487,233
Louisiana4,616,106
Maine1,359,677
Maryland6,075,314
Massachusetts6,922,107
Michigan9,995,212
Minnesota5,739,781
Mississippi2,961,536
Missouri6,184,843
Montana1,093,117
Nebraska1,960,790
Nevada3,238,601
New Hampshire1,378,449
New Jersey8,870,685
New Mexico2,109,093
New York19,223,191
North Carolina10,807,491
North Dakota774,008
Ohio11,727,377
Oklahoma4,007,179
Oregon4,325,290
Pennsylvania12,805,190
Rhode Island1,062,583
South Carolina5,342,388
South Dakota902,542
Tennessee7,001,803
Texas30,097,526
Utah3,363,182
Vermont622,882
Virginia8,638,218
Washington7,887,965
West Virginia1,755,715
Wisconsin5,867,518
Wyoming582,233

Lower 48 States

Sources