April 2, 2010
It's been over half a century since Hawaii joined the United States and the 50th star was added to the flag. And — except for the occasional
discussion of Puerto Rican statehood — there hasn't been much serious talk about expanding beyond 50. As for unserious talk, that has never been in
short supply. And Michael J. Trinklein has assembled the mostly unserious, but sometimes plausible ideas of expansionists, secessionists, and various
other -ists in his book Lost States: True Stories of Texlahoma, Transylvania, and Other States That Never Made It.
Thomas Jefferson had many ideas for Midwest state names that never materialized. One of those was "Sylvania," which would comprise what today is the
Upper Peninsula of Michigan and parts of Minnesota and Wisconsin. Sylvania was a popular suffix back in the day and means a "pleasant woodsy area."
William Penn wanted to use it, too, but settled on Pennsylvania in the end — a name more representative of his family legacy.
America's Transylvania: Transylvania was not only home to the world's most popular vampire; it was also the name of the area that today makes up
Kentucky state. It existed for about a year until Congress voted against making it America's 14th colony.
Texlahoma would have comprised 46 counties in Texas and 23 in Oklahoma. The goal? Better roads.
Quirk BooksTexlahoma would have comprised 46 counties in Texas and 23 in Oklahoma. The goal? Better roads.
Excerpt: 'Lost States'
The Mormon church was born in New York in the 1820s. So how did it end up in Utah? Almost from the beginning, the church's unusual beliefs led to
persecution, and members kept transplanting themselves to avoid harassment.
Things got especially messy when founder Joseph Smith received a revelation that he should start taking more wives. Lots more. Soon he was encouraging
other Mormon men to do the same. This diminished the available supply of comely young women, which upset a lot of non-Mormon men, especially the
bachelors. For this reasons — among others — an angry mob killed Smith in 1844.
This left master-organizer Brigham Young in charge. He solved the angry-bachelor problem by deciding to move the Mormons west to a place that had no
white settlements. Thus began the Mormon exodus to the Salt Lake basin in the mid-1840s.
This article goes on to talk about Long Island and Lost Dakota, very interesting information on what could have been in the U.S.