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List of U.S. state and territory nicknames facts for kids

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Nicknames of the states, 1884
Map of the United States showing the state nicknames as hogs. Lithograph by Mackwitz, St. Louis, 1884.

The following is a table of U.S. state and territory nicknames, including officially adopted nicknames, and other traditional nicknames for the 50 U.S. states and territories (and the District of Columbia).

State and territory nicknames

Current official state and territory nicknames are highlighted in bold. A state nickname is not to be confused with an official state motto.

State,
federal district,
or territory
Nickname(s)
 Alabama
 Alaska
 American Samoa
  • Motu o Fiafiaga (a Samoan phrase; in English, it is "Islands of Paradise") (currently used on American Samoa license plates)
  • Football Island[s]
 Arizona
  • Apache State
  • Aztec State
  • Baby State (because Arizona is the newest contiguous state in the Union)
  • Copper State
  • Grand Canyon State (currently used on license plates)
  • Italy of America
  • Sand Hill State
  • Sunset State
  • Sweetheart State (See below)
  • Valentine State (Arizona gained statehood on February 14, 1912)
 Arkansas
  • Bear State
  • Bowie State
  • Hot Springs State
  • Land of Opportunity (former official nickname; previously used on license plates)
  • The Natural State (currently used on license plates)
  • Razorback Crystal State
  • Toothpick State
  • Wonder State
 California
  • El Dorado State
  • The Golden State (previously used on license plates)
  • The Beach State
 Colorado
 Connecticut
  • Constitution State (official, currently used on license plates)
  • Nutmeg State
  • Provision State
  • Blue Law State
  • Freestone State
  • Land of Steady Habits
 Delaware
  • Chemical Capital of the World (due to one time being the corporate headquarters for several international chemical companies.)
  • Corporate Capital (due to the state's business-friendly incorporation laws)
  • Diamond State (Thomas Jefferson is supposed to have referred to Delaware as being like a diamond- small in size but great in value)
  • Blue Hen State or Blue Hen Chicken State
  • The First State (Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution; currently used on license plates)
  • Peach State (no longer used; see Georgia)
  • Small Wonder
 District of Columbia
  • Nation's Capital
  • DMV (nickname for the broader metropolitan area of Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia)
  • Inside the Beltway
 Florida
 Georgia
  • Peach State (currently used on license plates)
  • Cracker State — Along with Florida, Georgia had been called "The Cracker State" in earlier times, perhaps a derogatory term that referred to immigrants, called "crackers," from the mountains of Virginia and North Carolina. See also Atlanta Crackers: Origin of the name
  • Empire State of the South — Georgia is the largest Southern state in land area east of the Mississippi and was the leading industrial state of the Old South.
  • Goober State — Refers to peanuts, the official state crop.
  • State of Adventure (On highway welcome signs)
 Guam
  • Tano y Chamorro (Land of the Chamorro) (currently used on Guam license plates)
  • Hub of the Pacific
  • Gateway to Micronesia
 Hawaii
  • Aloha State (officially the "popular" name, currently used on license plates)
  • Paradise of the Pacific
  • Pineapple State
  • Rainbow State
  • Youngest State
  • 808 State (colloquial, refers to the state's area code.)
 Idaho
  • Gem State
  • Gem of the Mountains
  • Little Ida
  • Spud State
 Illinois
  • Land of Lincoln (currently used on license plates)
  • Prairie State
  • Corn State
  • Garden of the West
 Indiana
 Iowa
 Kansas
  • America's Heartland (previously used on Licence Plates)
  • Central State
  • Dorothy's Home
  • Free State
  • Midway USA (previously used on Kansas Licence Plates)
  • Sunflower State
  • Wheat State (previously used on license plates)
 Kentucky
  • Bluegrass State (currently used on license plates)
  • Corn-cracker State (reported in 1881)
  • The Dark and Bloody Ground State (an allusion to battles between the Creek, Shawnee, Chickasaw, and Cherokee tribes)
  • Hemp State
  • Tobacco State
 Louisiana
  • Bayou State (previously used on license plates)
  • Creole State
  • Pelican State
  • Sportsman's Paradise (currently used on license plates)
 Maine
  • Vacationland (currently used on license plates)
  • Pine Tree State (Co-official with Vacationland)
  • Lumber State
 Maryland
 Massachusetts
  • Baked Bean State
  • Codfish State (formerly represented on license plates by a codfish)
  • The Bay State
  • Old Colony State
  • Pilgrim State
  • The Spirit of America (currently used on license plates)
  • The People's Republic of Massachusetts (colloquial)
  • Taxachusetts (colloquial)
 Michigan
  • The Great Lakes State (previously used on license plates)
  • Water Wonderland and Water-Winter Wonderland (previously used on license plates)
  • The Wolverine State
  • The Mitten State
 Minnesota
  • Gopher State
  • Land of 10,000 Lakes ("10,000 Lakes" currently used on license plates)
  • New England of the West
  • North Star State
  • State of Hockey
  • ”Minne(snow)ta”
  • Bread and Butter State
 Mississippi
  • Hospitality State (previously used on license plates)
  • Magnolia State
  • The Birthplace of America's Music (currently being used on license plates)
  • The Bayou State
 Missouri
  • Bullion State
  • Show-Me State (currently used on license plates)
  • The Gateway to the West
 Montana
  • Big Sky Country (previously used on license plates)
  • The Last Best Place
  • Treasure State (currently used on license plates)
 Nebraska
  • Antelope State
  • Beef State (previously used on license plates)
  • Cornhusker State (previously used on license plates)
  • Bugeating State
  • Blackwater State
  • The Good Life (as seen on state border signs)
  • Tree Planters State
 Nevada
  • Battle Born State (refers to the fact that Nevada joined the Union during the Civil War)
  • Sagebrush State
  • Silver State (currently used on license plates)
  • Casino state
 New Hampshire
  • Granite State
  • The Live Free or Die State (official motto; "Live Free or Die" currently used on license plates)
  • Mother of Rivers
  • White Mountain State
 New Jersey
  • Garden State (currently used on license plates)
  • The Crossroads of the Revolution (previously used on license plates)
  • The Cornerstone State (used colloquially, especially with reference to Pennsylvania when it is called the Keystone State).
 New Mexico
  • Land of Enchantment (currently used on license plates)
  • Land of Sunshine (predates "Land of Enchantment"; this earlier nickname highlighted the large percentage of sunshine received statewide)
 New York
  • Empire State (currently used on license plates)
  • Excelsior State
 North Carolina
  • Old North State
  • Tar Heel State
  • Turpentine State
  • Variety Vacationland
  • First in Flight State (currently used on license plates)
  • First in Freedom (currently used on license plates)
 North Dakota
 Northern Mariana Islands
  • Håfa Adai (a Chamorro phrase; in English, it is "Hello") (currently used on Northern Mariana Islands license plates)
  • America's Best Kept Secret
 Ohio
  • Buckeye State
  • Birthplace of Aviation (currently used on license plates)
  • The Heart Of It All (formerly used on license plates)
 Oklahoma
 Oregon
  • Beaver State
  • Pacific Wonderland (previously used on license plates and currently available on an extra cost plate)
  • Webfoot State
 Pennsylvania
  • Keystone State (previously used on license plates)
  • Quaker State
  • Coal State
  • Railroad State
 Puerto Rico
  • Isla del Encanto ("Island of Enchantment") (currently used on license plates)
  • Borinquen (name given by indigenous people, the Tainos)
 Rhode Island
  • Little Rhody
  • Ocean State (currently used on license plates)
  • Rogues Island
  • The Licentious Republic
  • Smallest State
 South Carolina
 South Dakota
  • Artesian State
  • Blizzard State
  • Coyote State
  • Land of Infinite Variety
  • The Mount Rushmore State (officially adopted in 1980 in place of the former nickname of Coyote State)
  • Sunshine State (no longer used; see Florida)
 Tennessee
  • Big Bend State (refers to the Tennessee River)
  • Butternut State (refers to the tan color of the uniforms worn by Tennessee soldiers in the American Civil War)
  • Hog and Hominy State
  • The Mother of Southwestern Statesmen
  • Volunteer State (currently used on license plates)
 Texas
  • Lone Star State (currently used on license plates)
 U.S. Virgin Islands
  • America's Caribbean (used on U.S. Virgin Islands license plates until 2015)
  • American Paradise
 Utah
  • Beehive State
  • Mormon State
  • Friendly State (formerly used on license plates)
 Vermont
 Virginia
 Washington
  • Evergreen State (currently used on license plates)
 West Virginia
  • Mountain State (previously used on license plates)
  • Panhandle State
  • The Switzerland of America
  • Almost Heaven
 Wisconsin
  • Badger State
  • America's Dairyland (also on license plates since a 1939 state law)
  • The Mitten State
  • The Copper State (historical)
  • The Dairy State
 Wyoming
  • Cowboy State
  • Equality State
  • Forever West (on highway welcome signs)
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List of U.S. state and territory nicknames Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.