The Southeast United States is the region of the United States located in the southeastern portion of the United States. More specifically, it includes all states that fall south of the Mason-Dixon line and the Ohio River, stretching as far as Arkansas. Like other informal regions of the United States, the states that are considered part of the Southeast are defined differently.
The American Association of Geographers has defined the Southeast region to include the following states:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
- West Virginia
The U.S. Geological Survey the Southeast slightly differently. Under this definition, the following states make up this region:
The territories of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands are also included as part of the Southeast under this definition. Other definitions also include Delaware, Maryland, and the District of Columbia.
The Southeastern United States has a total area of over 580,000 square miles with a population of over 97 million. The population density is just over 150 people per square mile.
The most populous state in the region is Florida, which has an estimated population of nearly 21 million people. Other populous states include Georgia, which has a population of over 10.4 million, North Carolina, which has a population of over 10.27 million, and Virginia, with a population of over 8.47 million.
The least populous state in the Southeast is West Virginia, which has a population of 1.8 million, followed by Mississippi with a population of 2.98 million. Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Alabama are also among the least populous southeastern states with populations that each fall below 5 million per the latest estimates.
The largest city in the Southeast is Jacksonville, Florida, which has a population of over 868,000. Other populous cities include Charlotte, North Carolina; Washington, D.C.; Nashville, Tennessee; Memphis, Tennessee; and Baltimore, Maryland.