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Washington State Facts

Washington is located in the Pacific Northwestern part of USA. It is bordered on various sides by British Columbia, Idaho and Oregon. It is situated on Pacific Ocean's shoreline. The state was created from the western part of the erstwhile Washington territory.

Facts about Washington

Official NameWashington
CapitalOlympia
Largest CitySeattle
Official LanguageEnglish (de facto)
Time ZoneUTC-08:00
GovernorJay Inslee
Lt. GovernorBrad Owen
U.S. SenatorMaria Cantwell, Patty Murray
AbbreviationWA, US-WA
Joined the Union11 November 1889
NicknameThe Evergreen State
Highest PointMount Rainier
Lowest PointPacific Ocean
Official Websiteaccess.wa.gov

Where is Washington?
The US state of Washington is located in the Pacific Northwest region. It shares its borders with the Canadian province of British Columbia in the north, Oregon in the south, Idaho in the east and the Pacific Ocean in the west. It is the eighteenth largest state in the union.

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How did Washington get its name?
The state of Washington is named after the first president of the United States, George Washington. It is the only state in the country which is named after a president.

What is the capital of Washington ?
Incorporated on January 28, 1859, Olympia is the capital of Washington. It is located at the southern end of the Puget Sound on Budd Inlet and is the county seat of Thurston County. It is a major cultural center of the Puget Sound lowland region. It covers a total area of 18.5 square miles and has an estimated population of 46,478.

How big is Washington ?
The US state of Washington is the eighteenth largest state in the country. It covers a total area of 71,300 square miles and has an estimated population of 6,724,540. It the thirteenth most populous state in the country.

Which is the largest city of Washington ?
Seattle is the largest city of Washington and the Pacific Northwest. It covers a total area of 142.5 square miles and has an estimated population of 608,660. It is a major seaport and is named after Chief Sealth "Seattle." It is the county seat of King County and is the major economic, cultural and educational center in the region. It is ranked as one of the most car-congested cities in United States of America.

Why is Washington called "The Evergreen State" ?
"The evergreen state" is the nickname of Washington. The name was proposed by Charles T. Conover in 1890. It is called "evergreen state" because of the evergreen forests in the state.

What is the religion of Washington ?
Christianity is the predominant religion in Washington state. The religious affiliations of the people of Washington are: Protestant (49%), Unaffiliated (25%), Catholic (16%), Latter-day Saint (4%), Jewish (1%), Muslim (1%), and other religious (3%).

Who is the political leader of Washington ?
The government of Washington has three divisions: Executive, Legislature and Judicial. The state legislature comprised a lower House of Representatives and an upper State Senate. The governor is the head of the executive branch. The governor of Washington is Jay Inslee. He assumed office on January 16, 2013 and is the 23rd Governor of the State of Washington. Brad Owen is the 15th Lieutenant Governor of Washington. He assumed office on January 15, 1997.

When did Washington achieve statehood ?
Washington became the 42nd state in the United States of America on November 11, 1869. Before statehood, it was called the Territory of Washington. The original territory included the present day State of Washington as well as northern Idaho and Montana west of the continental divide.

What are some of the famous places in Washington ?
The Olympic National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve. Other notable places in the state are Mount St. Helens, Yakima Canyon Byway, The Wells House, Washington State Capitol, Snoqualmie Falls, Lake Chelan National Recreation Area, and Grays River Covered Bridge.

What is the economy of Washington like ?
The total state product of Washington in 2010 was $351.5 billion and the per capita income in 2009 was $52,403. The unemployment rate in the state is 9%. The GDP of the state is the fourteenth-largest in the nation, while the per capita income ranks tenth-highest in the nation. It is the leading producer of hydroelectric power in the United States. Tourism, mining, online retailers, manufacture of aircrafts and computer software development are some of the significant businesses within the state. It is a leading agricultural state. Apple industry is important to the state. It is the leading producer of apples since 1920s.

Location and Geography : Washington (often called “Washington state” to distinguish it from Washington, D.C.) is located in the far northwest section of the coterminous United States, bordering the Pacific Ocean. It has a rainforest-like environment in its western part, while its eastern side is much more arid. The state is home to several dangerous volcanoes such as Mount St. Helens, which erupted violently in 1980, killing 57 people and causing extensive damage.

Counties and Regions : The state of Washington has 39 counties, which are roughly grouped into the following regions:

  • Central Washington
  • Columbia Plateau
  • Eastern Washington
  • Kitsap Peninsula
  • Long Beach Peninsula
  • Okanogan County (largest county in the state)
  • Olympic Peninsula
  • Puget Sound/Seattle metro area
  • San Juan Islands
  • Skagit Valley
  • The Tri-Cities (Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland)
  • Walla Walla Valley
  • Western Washington
  • Yakima Valley

Washington also contains a great number of national parks, national forests, and federally protected wildernesses. It is additionally known for its high number of American Indian reservations.

Major Cities : Seattle is Washington’s most populous city, with the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metropolitan area containing more than three million people. All of the other cities in the state have fewer than three hundred thousand people each, but other major population centers include Spokane, Vancouver, and the Tri-Cities region. The state capital, Olympia, has less than fifty thousand residents.

Population : Washington is home to more than six million, seven hundred thousand residents. The majority of this population is concentrated on the western side of the mountains, usually along the Pacific Coast.

Story Behind the Name : Washington state, like other places in the United States, is named after George Washington, the nation’s first president. This name was suggested by the U.S. Congress when Washington applied to be a state-the residents had originally wanted Columbia, the name of one of the region’s major rivers.

History and Colonization : The mountains that bisect what is now the state of Washington,
creating two different primary climates, naturally encourage different lifestyles from the east to the west. On the lush western coast of the state, Native American and later European immigrant populations thrived on fishing, trade, and navigation. The drier eastern half of the state has been more amenable to an agrarian lifestyle that more closely resembles that of the American Midwest. Washington’s western coast, the large city of Seattle in particular, has always been seen as the cultural and economic center of the state.

Spain discovered the land in the eighteenth century, and for a long time it was vied over by Spanish, British, Russian, and American colonial powers. Infectious diseases devastated the Native American population, which today is concentrated mainly in reservations (several tribes from other areas in the United States were relocated here as well, and have their own reservations). As the Spanish Empire weakened, Britain and the United States became the main competitors over ownership of the area After Lewis and Clark’s famous expedition to the interior, more and more American citizens began arriving in the hopes of starting a new life. Afterwards, the Oregon Trail was established, and served to funnel hundreds of thousands of American settlers to new homes on the West Coast.

By 1852, the area was much more populated than it had ever been, mostly by American settlers. The territory sent a formal request to the United States government that it be admitted as a state, to be called Columbia. The U.S. agreed, on the condition that the name of the state be changed to Washington (there were fears that it would be confused with the nation’s capital, the District of Columbia, but since the latter was also known as “Washington” this seems to have been a counterproductive idea). Washington became the 42nd state to enter the union.

Washington state, Seattle in particular, has always been a center of sea trade. This encouraged a great deal of industrialization in the region, most notably in the fields of aviation and hydroelectric dam-building. Harvesting the state’s lumber and mineral resources proved to be lucrative as well. In the twentieth century, Washington also came to be heavily associated with the arts, especially with cutting-edge music styles.

More Washington Facts & Trivia


1.In May 1980 Mount St. Helen's blew up and let off dirt, rubbish and ash that measured almost a cubic mile. This explosion flattened more than 4 billion feet of wood, which would have been sufficient to set up 150,000 houses. This flare up also resulted in the volcano losing 1,131 feet of height.

2.The height of Mt. Rainier is 14410 feet. It is the tallest location in Washington.

3.Ape Cave is one of the lava tubes with the maximum length. It was created more than 2 millennia back thanks to a major outpour of basalt.

4.During 1805-1806 the coastal locations close to Columbia River and the whole region was found out by Lewis and Clark. During 1792-94 George Vancouver went around the area on behalf of UK. In 1792 he was preceded by Captain Robert Gray who did it for USA. The earliest explorer of the area is Bruno Heceta. He represented Spain and visited the area in 1775.

5.Washington has the maximum amount of coffee making devices on a per capita basis out of all the states in USA. This is why it has been nicknamed the coffee capital of USA.

6.Companies in the western part of the state center deal in agriculture, fisheries and forests. Raw materials that are imported are pretty crucial for these set ups as well.

7.In 1986 Mt. Mitchell received 14.26 inches of rainfall. It was the highest amount of rain ever received by a location in the state.

8.In USA, Seattle was the earliest city to have aired on radio a song performed by the famous British band Beatles.

9.Washington has been home to many indigenous American tribes over the years. The eastern part of the state was inhabited by Cayuse, Spokane, Colville and Nez Perce. The other half was the homeland of Chinook, Quinault, Nisqually and Puyallup.

10.Astoria-Megler Bridge stretches for 4.1 miles. Among the straight truss bridges made out of steel it has the maximum length. It encompasses the river that separates Washington from Oregon and is close to the source of River Columbia.

11.From a geographic point of view Washington can be divided into two broad regions. The western area is rainy while the eastern part is mainly dry.

12.Washington exports forest products, hops, aerospace products, mint, apples, wheat and tulips. It is responsible for 5% of goods and services exported by USA, and thus is the biggest exporter in the country.

13.Husky fans, who hail from the University of Washington, started the Wave. It is a famous way of showing appreciation by fans and has been in vogue for the past 25 years.

14.Coast Rhododendron is the officially recognized flower of Washington.

15.The newest assembly factory of Boeing is situated in Everett. It is the hugest building globally.

16.As per the Oregon Treaty, which was signed in 1846, the 49th parallel was agreed to as the territorial boundary between the warring British and American factions. In the 1840s there were territorial disputes between these two entities and there were possibilities of a war. However, this treaty helped douse the tensions and showed an alternative to war.

17.Dr. John McLoughlin had placed an apple tree in 1826. This tree was sown at Old Apple Tree Park in Vancouver and is supposedly the earliest of its kind in the northwestern part of the country.

18.Companies in eastern part of Washington deal in agricultural products like wheat and farm animals.

19.In the previous sporting seasons the scoring charts in Division I of NCAA were led by Adam Morrison. He is a famous basketball player, is a student of Gonzaga University and is from Washington.

20.Peter Rainier was a British soldier during the American War of Independence. Mount Rainier has been named in order to honor him.

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Last Updated on: October 3rd, 2017