Brief Description of the Site:
Who knew, except perhaps for Kentuckians and Nevadans, that the capital of Kentucky was Frankfort and that the capital of Nevada was neither Reno nor Las Vegas but relatively tiny Carson City? But this site, which should be book-marked in your â€œReferenceâ€ folder, provides more than just what its name implies. Clicking on the folder for a particular state produces an alphabetical list of categories, from â€œAdmission to Statehoodâ€ through â€œLargest Citiesâ€ and up to and including the White and Yellow Pages. Most of the entries following each category are hot links. Clicking on 108th Congress after House of Representatives brings up, after some fiddling, a list of that stateâ€™s current House members. Clicking on the number following â€œPopulationâ€ brings up a U.S. Census Bureau page contrasting that particular stateâ€™s statistics with the national averages. Probably the strangest category is â€œPermanent Residents,â€ which leads to a page for that state on the â€œFind a Graveâ€ site. Following this link for the state of Missouri, for example, reveals that among the 1,596 â€˜permanentâ€™ Missouri residents are the country music star Boxcar Willie and some poor fellow who was killed in the not-quite-famous Gasconade Bridge disaster of November, 1855 as well as the much-better-known Harry S. Truman, 33d President of the United States. Other information includes the Official State Song, complete with lyrics, and the derivation of the stateâ€™s name. Missouri is â€œnamed after Missouri Indian tribe whose name means â€˜town of the large canoesâ€™."
How to use the site:
The mundane: for researching all those arcane facts that hopefully no teachers still require their students to memorize but which are necessary for reports of various kinds. Students first beginning to do research will find the simpler data, such as the color photo and explanation of each stateâ€™s flag helpful, or perhaps the clickable links for State Flower and State Bird, a rewarding experience. Another possibility is to create comparisons/contrasts of data for selected states. The creative: those who have a class of â€˜creative souls yearning to breathe freeâ€™ should direct them here with these instructions: â€œForm a team and use this site and the power of the Web to put together a truly awesome, original, and creative presentation about the state of your choice, going as deeply as you can into the details of the place without boring us. And be sure you include material from the â€œPermanent Residentsâ€ category.â€