Can You Guess the U.S. State from Its Abbreviation?
You probably know the abbreviation for the state you live in—but what about the other 49? Of course, some state abbreviations are pretty obvious: "NJ" is New Jersey; "HI" is Hawaii. But some are far less intuitive. Can you figure out which states these 11 abbreviations belong to?
The first two states in the alphabet start with “AL,” but it’s the very first one that gets that abbreviation. See how well you know the 50 states by seeing if you can correctly identify these state capitals.
Alabama might be the first U.S. state name alphabetically, but Alaska’s abbreviation, “AK,” puts it first in the list of abbreviations.
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Arizona’s abbreviation is “AZ,” and it’s actually the only state name in the United States that has the letter Z in it! Can you guess which letter doesn’t appear in any U.S. state name at all?
Connecticut and Colorado both start with “CO,” but their abbreviations use their first and last letter, so Colorado’s is still “CO.” Connecticut’s abbreviation is “CT.”
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Iowa, the only U.S. state that starts with two consecutive vowels, actually doesn’t use those two vowels as its abbreviation! Instead, it uses “IA,” its first and last letter. There are four U.S. states that begin with I, but there’s actually no “IO.” For an even tricker state trivia quiz, see if you can identify the U.S. state from just its flag!
There are more states that begin with M than any other letter—a full eight!—so their abbreviations can be tricky to keep straight. Luckily, Michigan’s abbreviation, just its first two letters, is pretty straightforward…even though there are two other states that begin with “MI.”
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Since “Mississippi” has the letter S in it four times, it makes sense that “MS” would be its abbreviation. (Although Massachusetts does too!) You probably know Mississippi from its unique, hard-but-fun-to-spell name, but we bet you didn’t know the strangest fact about every U.S. state.
With “MI” and “MS” already taken, that makes things a little tricky for Missouri, which uses its fifth letter for the second letter in its abbreviation.
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The North Star State uses “MN” as its abbreviation, leaving “MT” for Montana (which, by the way, is nicknamed the Treasure State). See if you can guess 20 U.S. states by their nicknames.
Both U.S. states that begin with N also have E as their second letter! Nevada uses its second consonant instead: “NV.”
Why not jump to the other side of the country and try to wrap your head around these wacky facts about Washington, D.C.
#11. Is “MA” the abbreviation for…
While Massachusetts gets its first two letters as its abbreviation, Maine (“ME”) and Maryland (“MD”) use their first and last.
Now that you know the most confusing U.S. state abbreviations, see how you fare with these other 24 U.S. state facts everyone gets wrong.