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This page features California Facts, including useful links to California Greyhound and Amtrak Train stations.
Scroll down for interesting facts about all U.S. states. Each state takes first-place in its own unique way. See how YOUR state leads the nation! To see more California fast facts, visit any link shown at the bottom of this page.
The world's first Electric Trolley System was introduced in Montgomery in 1886.
Alabama workers built the first rocket to put humans on the moon.
In 2005, Alabama became the first state to enact protective laws against eminent domain (local government seizure of privately owned property for commercial use or development).
In 1965, Alaska was the first U.S. state to open a trade office in Japan.
In 1996, Arizona became the first state to implement sweeping drug policy reform when its voters approved Proposition 200, which mandates that non-violent drug offenders arrested for simple possession or use of an illegal drug must receive drug treatment instead of jail time for their first and second offenses.
On March 3, 1937, Arkansas became the first state in the nation to authorize the formation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.
Arkansas was also the first U.S. state where diamonds were discovered in nature.
Three Fast Facts About California:
California was the first state to implement the concept of a "no-fault divorce." In effect, this means that if a married person wishes to terminate the marriage, he/she can do so, without giving a reason, even if the other person disagrees.
California was also the first U.S. state to designate a State Rock. Serpentine was named the official State Rock in 1965. It contains the state's principal deposits of chromite, magnesite, and cinnabar.
More California Facts: California is the only state with five Major League baseball teams.
In 1893, Colorado was the first state in which all registered voters voted on the rights of women to vote.
In 1897, Connecticut became the first state to pass a law to study sewage treatment and disposal.
In 1982, Connecticut was also the first state in the country to open a materials recycling plant.
Delaware was the first state.
Florida was the first state to be named (long before it was a state). Spanish explorer, Juan Ponce de León, named the area La Florida in 1513. The name honors Pasqua de Flores, the Spanish Feast of the Flowers at Eastertime.
Georgia was the first state to charter a state university, the University of Georgia, founded in 1785.
In 1836, Wesleyan College (founded in Macon) became the first college in the world chartered to grant degrees to women.
Georgia was also the first state to create a state department of agriculture.
Hawaii was the first state to have an Asian American governor.
Idaho was the first state in the nation to elect a Jewish governor.
In 2006, Illinois became the first state in the nation to make all 3- and 4-year-olds eligible for state-funded preschool.
In 1990, Illinois became the first state to mandate the teaching of the Holocaust in public schools.
In Springfield during the 1940s, the first corn dog made its debut.
Tinkertoys were invented in Evanston in 1914.
Wabash became the world's first electrically lit city in 1856.
America's first train robbery happened in Seymour in 1866.
America's first professional baseball game was held in Fort Wayne in 1871.
Indiana was the first state to start a state-funded public school system.
In 1868, Iowa became the first state outside of New England to allow African-Americans to vote.
During the Civil War, Kansas was the first state to officially recruit and train military units comprised of black soldiers.
In 1838, Kentucky became the first state to permit suffrage of any kind; property-owning widows and single women were given the right to vote in school elections.
Kentucky was also the first state in the Nation to be topographically and geologically mapped on a detailed scale (1:24,000).
Louisiana was the first state in the nation to produce a statewide architectural heritage education curriculum.
In 1846, Maine became the first state to pass a law making alcoholic drinks illegal.
Maine was also the first state to equip students statewide with laptop computers.
In 1993, Maryland became the first state to release a death row inmate because of genetic testing.
In the 1850s, Massachusetts became the first state to require children to go to school.
In 1847, Michigan became the first State to abolish capital punishment.
Michigan hosted America's first state fair in 1849.
The first pedestrian mall was built in Kalamazoo in 1959.
In 1861, Minnesota became the first state to offer troops to the Union.
Mississippi was the first state in the Union to pass legislation protecting the property rights of married women.
It was also the first state to outlaw imprisonment for debtors.
Mississippi was the first state to be represented by an African-American senator.
Mississippi had the first PTA in the nation.
In 1865, Missouri became the first slave state to free its slaves.
Missouri was the site of the first successful parachute jump made from a moving airplane.
Montana was the first state to elect a female Congressman (Jeannette Rankin).
In 1997, Montana was the first state to legalize offshore banking.
The world's first rodeo was held in North Platte on July 4, 1882. It's star was Buffalo Bill Cody.
Nebraska was the first state to research gasohol.
Nebraska was the first state to complete its mainline interstate system.
In 1956, Nevada became the first state to pass a law allowing home schooling.
Nevada was also, not surprisingly, the first state to legalize casino gambling.
New Hampshire was the first state to have its own state constitution.
New Hampshire was also the first state to offer a state lottery.
New Jersey was the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights in 1789.
In 2002, New Mexico became the first state to grant prescription privileges to trained psychologists.
On April 25, 1901, New York became the first state to require license plates on automobiles.
New York was also the first state to officially preserve a historic site (Washington's Headquarters at Newburgh), establish a state park (Niagara Reservation), and declare land "forever wild" (the Adirondack and Catskill forest preserves).
The first successful airplane flight, piloted by the Wright brothers, took off from Kitty Hawk, NC in 1903.
In 1851, the first U.S. post office was established in what is now North Dakota.
In 1938, Ohio became the first state to set aside a day for honoring poets. State Poetry Day is the third Friday in October.
Oklahoma was the site of the first automobile parking meter, the first grocery shopping cart, and the nation’s first community hospital.
Oklahoma was also the first state to build a flood control dam.
On February 24, 1919, Oregon became the first state to tax gasoline.
In 1995, Oregon became the first state to conduct a federal primary election totally by mail.
The first zoo in America was founded in Philadelphia in 1874.
Pennsylvania was the first state to put its webpage address on its license plates.
On May 4, 1776, Rhode Island became the first state to declare its independence from Great Britain.
On December 20, 1860, South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union, precipitating the Civil War.
South Dakota was the first state to pass legislation protecting unborn babies from abortion.
On July 24, 1866, Tennessee became the first state readmitted to the Union following the Civil War.
Texas was the first state to have an appellate criminal court, with the creation of the Court of Appeals in the State Constitution of 1876.
Texas was also the first state in the nation to create wildlife viewing trails, an idea that resulted in similar projects throughout North America.
Utah was the first state to ban cigarette vending machines.
On January 5, 1935, Vermont became the first state to form its own symphony orchestra.
In 1777, Vermont became the first state to outlaw slavery in its constitution.
In 1989, Virginia became the first state to elect a black Governor - Democrat Doug Wilder.
In 1982, Washington became the first state in the nation to create a separate agency of state government solely dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
On July 1, 1921, West Virginia became the first state to have a sales tax.
The first kindergarten was opened in Watertown in 1856.
America's first hamburger was served in Seymour in the 1880s.
The first Ringling Brothers Circus was staged in Baraboo in 1884.
In 1911, Wisconsin became the first state to have a workmen's compensation law, to provide monetary benefits for workers injured on the job.
Wisconsin was the first state to outlaw discrimination against women (1921).
In 1932, Wisconsin became the first state to pass a law authorizing unemployment benefits.
And in 1945, Wisconsin became the first state to provide monetary benefits to people with disabilities.
Wyoming was the first state to give women the right to vote.
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