The Most Historic Firsts from Every U.S. State
Which state was the first to declare Christmas a legal holiday? And where was the nation’s first football game played? Read on to find out!
Alabama became the first U.S. state to observe Christmas as a legal holiday in 1836. And this state was way ahead of the curve; Christmas Day didn’t become a federal holiday for another 30 years. Here are 50 more astonishing facts you never knew about the 50 states.
The Hammer Museum, the world’s first museum devoted exclusively to hammers, is located in Haines, Alaska. Its extensive collections offer everything from hammer sculptures, to handle-making machinery, to spring-loaded meat tenderizers. Check out these other little-known facts about America.
You can thank Arizona for your next cross-country road trip. Local Arizonans created the nation’s first Route 66 association in 1987 and received the first-ever “Historic Route 66” designation, bringing new life to the now-famous Mother Road. Try these iconic bucket list ideas for every state.
In 1962, an Arkansan businessman named Sam Walton opened the first Walmart store in Rogers, Arkansas with a $20,000 loan. Today, the discount mega-retailer has expanded to over 11,000 stores across 27 countries and makes over $100 billion in revenues each year.
Did you know that the famous fast-food chain McDonald’s calls California home? Brothers Maurice (“Mac”) and Richard McDonald opened the first McDonald’s restaurant in San Bernardino, California in 1948. Back then, a plain hamburger cost 15 cents. Don’t miss the U.S. state facts everyone gets wrong.
In 2012, the residents of Colorado voted to legalize cannabis (or marijuana) for recreational use. Both Colorado and Washington became the first U.S. states to do so that year. Other “firsts” quickly followed, including the nation’s first drive-through marijuana dispensaries.
The nation’s first phone book was published in New Haven in February 1878. Fun fact: The “book” was made with a single piece of cardboard and contained just 50 names.
The original U.S. flag, which consisted of 13 stars arranged in a circle, was reportedly flown for the first time during the Battle of Cooch’s Bridge in Delaware on September 3, 1777. American General William Maxwell ordered his men to raise the Stars and Stripes banner as the rebels clashed with British troops.
It probably comes as no surprise that the Sunshine State is also the birthplace of sunscreen. A Miami pharmacist named Benjamin Green invented the first suntan lotion to protect himself from UV rays during World War II. We now know Green’s product as Coppertone sunscreen.
It may be the most recognized soda in the world, but had humble beginnings. In 1886, inventor John Pemberton carried a jug of the sweet, carbonated beverage across the street to a small pharmacy in Atlanta, Georgia, where it was first sold at a soda fountain for five cents a glass. These are the most famous inventions from every state.