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Old 05-29-2013, 11:09 AM
Status: "Then everything change forever..." (set 13 days ago)
 
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I think the region of the US that has the strongest British influence is the aptly named New England (Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.) In the states that border the Canadian border (especially Maine) there's some French influence, but everywhere else the British imprint is quite strong.

The British influence is quite visible in the way the towns look and their architecture, the way municipal governments function, in the ancestry of the people (most descent from the British with a few pockets of Italian, Greek, Irish, etc descent), even the countryside looks similar to that of England, especially in Massachusetts-Connecticut-Rhode Island. If you look at a map of say Connecticut and compare the names of many towns with those found in England, you will find that its the same and in most cases its due to the original founders of the New England towns were from the British counterpart. There are Greenwich in Connecticut and in England, as well as Stamford, Avon, Stratford, [New] London, Essex, etc. Boston is the largest city in New England and almost everyone agrees that its the largest US city with the strongest European influence and feel.

Also, many of the original old money ruling class of the USA have their origins in this part of the country. Even Hawaii, despite being in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, its old money ruling class are almost all descendants of Christian Missionaries that originally left from Massachusetts. Their influence is the strongest one in Hawaii because they form the dominant social group and the same can be said of most US states. There's also plenty of non-New England/British influences, but these are secondary in overall importance.

Anyway, New England is very different from the rest of the USA and its the most European-like area. Its also the geographically closest part of the USA to Europe, so I don't know how much this has to do with that.

Once you leave New England, most of the rest of the USA were lands under non-British rule for a very long time. A good chunk of the Midwest/up and down the Mississippi River areas were ruled and influenced by France until the Louisiana Purchase. Much of the western USA was part of the Spanish Empire and ruled from Mexico City. Alaska was under Russian rule for quite a few years and Hawaii was an independent Polynesian kingdom before the Massachusetts Christian missionaries went in and literally took over.

The one place that will possibly be added in the next few decades is Puerto Rico and they were part of the Spanish Empire for about 400 years and you can still feel it when you visit.

Last edited by AntonioR; 05-29-2013 at 11:33 AM..
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Old 05-29-2013, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
34,682 posts, read 33,681,492 times
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Warm beer = no influence
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Austin, Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraC View Post
Warm beer = no influence
I think you've got them confused with Germans.
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:21 PM
 
44 posts, read 58,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hipcat View Post
It seems to me that the British influence of this country is weak. Very few of the most common foods we eat are of British origin. The most popular sports are totally different. And its seems the me that the strongest British influences are at governmental level.

So how strong is the British influence in the US?

Most sports/games played in the US were introduced by the British.

Out of the Big 4 (AF,Baseball,Basketball, Ice Hockey), Baseball and American Football have very direct links to Britain.

History of Baseball

-- Not only did Baseball originate in Britain, but the idea of a score-card was introduced by an English immigrant, Henry Chadwick.

American Football

-- American Football/Gridiron, though invented on American soil, has its roots in Rugby.


There are countless other contributions made by the British, that are simply acknowledged as "All-American".
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:28 PM
 
Location: Shaw.
2,226 posts, read 3,142,569 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hipcat View Post
It seems to me that the British influence of this country is weak. Very few of the most common foods we eat are of British origin. The most popular sports are totally different. And its seems the me that the strongest British influences are at governmental level.

So how strong is the British influence in the US?
I used to think it was very little and that Germans had more influence. Lagers are more popular than Ales, coffee is more popular than tea, we eat cookies (Dutch word) instead of biscuits (Norman word). There are many other things that suggest Germanic culture is stronger than Anglo-Saxon.

That said, I've recently started to look more into the early settlement period of US history and I think I've sold England short. So many of our customs and traditions (including our right to bare arms, e.g.) come from English common law. Our whole legal system is based on the English. Moreover, the coastal South and New England are predominantly of English stock and English regions helped influence the cultural norms of the regions--the South tends to be more aristocratic, while the Northeast tends to be more moralizing (aka the snobbishness that bothers Southerners).
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:56 PM
 
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A list of the most popular Nursary rhymes. The vast majority of them are British.

How many of them are well known to Americans?

A small selection:

Little Bo Peep
Three Blind Mice
Humpty Dumpty
Jack and Jill
London Bridge is Falling Down
Old King Cole
Roses are Red..
Rock-a-bye Baby

This may seem a little silly, but I think it indicates the level of British influence that Americans aren't aware of.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:06 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArsenalFC View Post
A list of the most popular Nursary rhymes. The vast majority of them are British.

How many of them are well known to Americans?

A small selection:

Little Bo Peep
Three Blind Mice
Humpty Dumpty
Jack and Jill
London Bridge is Falling Down
Old King Cole
Roses are Red..
Rock-a-bye Baby

This may seem a little silly, but I think it indicates the level of British influence that Americans aren't aware of.
In some cases, the U.S. has kept ancient English words which dropped out of favor in the UK. One example is diaper, which was universally used in England in Shakespearean times, but dropped out of favor for nappy in the modern era. Another example is the use of Fall (an old English term) for the season between Summer and Winter. In Britain, this became replaced by the French variant, Autumn.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:11 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
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How strong is British influence in the U.S.?

How about... our language, our literature, our music, our government, our political system, our legal system and our economic system - for starters?
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:14 PM
 
Location: San Diego
939 posts, read 2,829,451 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCityDreamer View Post
How strong is British influence in the U.S.?

How about... our language, our literature, our music, our government, our political system, our legal system and our economic system - for starters?
lol
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:37 PM
 
44 posts, read 58,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pgm123 View Post
I used to think it was very little and that Germans had more influence. Lagers are more popular than Ales, coffee is more popular than tea, we eat cookies (Dutch word) instead of biscuits (Norman word). There are many other things that suggest Germanic culture is stronger than Anglo-Saxon.

That said, I've recently started to look more into the early settlement period of US history and I think I've sold England short. So many of our customs and traditions (including our right to bare arms, e.g.) come from English common law. Our whole legal system is based on the English. Moreover, the coastal South and New England are predominantly of English stock and English regions helped influence the cultural norms of the regions--the South tends to be more aristocratic, while the Northeast tends to be more moralizing (aka the snobbishness that bothers Southerners).
We were a typical Coffee drinking nation up until the mid 1800s, when Tea became the drink of choice.
I would say that today, Coffee and Tea are equally popular.

Also, I think you've forgotten something:

American tea culture - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"During the colonial period, tea and tea taxes were a bone of contention between the American Colonies and Britain. This led to the Boston Tea Party, a precipitating event of the American Revolution, where angry Colonists destroyed the tea cargo of three British ships by dumping them into Boston Harbor. Boycotts of tea by the colonists during this period led to an increase in consumption of other beverages, such as coffee or herbal teas."

Tea consumption decreased in America sharply after the American Revolution, as "The Americans love it very much, but they had resolved to drink it no longer, as the famous duty on the tea had occasioned the war."
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