August 1, 1876: Colorado joined the Union.
It took sixteen years, four Colorado votes, three suggested state constitutions, and multiple attempts in Congress for Colorado to finally become the 38th state.
Coloradans went through many votes and re-votes to decide if they wanted to go from territory to state. The first of these was in 1860, and though it was only about 400 votes off, they stayed a territory. What was the biggest reason for this? Well, as a state they didn’t have to worry about the expenses of administering a government; as a territory, federal funds took care of that. If they were to become a state, it would be their responsibility.
Colorado’s first bid for statehood was vetoed by President Andrew Johnson in May of 1866, saying that Colorado’s population (which was around 34k) was too small to be a state.
Yep. No joke.
So after a lot of pushing, and when President Johnson was finally out of office, President Ulysses S. Grant issued a proclamation declaring Colorado a state August 1, 1876 – and Colorado officially joined the Union. This proclamation happened the year the United States celebrated its centennial.
Thus, the 38th state is known as the Centennial State. <– (I felt kind of dumb for never knowing why this was so until I looked it up.)
Fun facts about Colorado:
- my older sister & her family live there (I knew you HAD to know)
- Colorado is the only U.S. state that lies entirely above 1000 meters elevation.
- The tallest sand dune in America is in Great Sand Dunes National Park.
- Denver, lays claim to the invention of the cheeseburger. Denver resident Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In named his sandwitch the cheeseburger
- The 13th step of the state capital building in Denver is exactly 1 mile high above sea level.
- Katherine Lee Bates wrote ‘America the Beautiful’ after being inspired by the view from Pikes Peak
Have you ever been to Colorado? What was your favorite part?