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Old 03-07-2008, 02:47 PM
 
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My theory? State capitals were typically chosen for their convenience to all parts of the state's most populated areas at the time. This was especially true back when transportation was so slow. Sacramento, for example sat squarely in the population center of the state in the 1850s. In fact, the only exception to the rule I can think of is Juneau, Alaska. It's not close to a cotton-picking thing.

Today in Florida, Tallahassee makes no sense. But back when the lower half of Florida was largely uninhabitable, it did.

In Alabama, Montgomery is really the fourth largest metro area behind Birmingham, Mobile, and Huntsville. And, in another few years, I predict Auburn/Opelika will overtake it, too.

The other factor? What makes a city a suitable site for a capital city doesn't necessarily mean it's economically viable. Case in point? Montgomery, Alabama. If state government wasn't there, it would be a wide spot in the road (at least before somebody coaxed Hyundai to put a plant there). Quite frankly, before Hyundai came, somebody could have detonated a nuclear weapon over Montgomery and the rest of Alabama wouldn't have missed it--except to look up the following April and say, "Hey, I haven't received my state tax forms this year. What gives?"
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Old 03-07-2008, 04:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CNI View Post
It was never implied that any state capital does not have a viable economy w/o the presence of state government.
You are proclaiming St. Paul is viable w/o state government. Fine. Thanks for sharing.
In response to the OP's thread, I am theorizing that some capital cities would have MORE population if the capital's government had a larger tax base, residents had less of a tax burden, etc.


To a certain extent...Apples - Oranges.
I was responding to your post: "While these institutions do add to the quality of life, they can take up prime downtown and city real estate that might otherwise be used for corporate development (and the taxes that accompany it). This may hinder growth by putting more of a tax burden on residents than they would undure in other cities."

I'm telling you that is not a problem in St Paul. In fact, many small businesses thrive in our city because they serve various needs of state government.
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Old 03-09-2008, 10:28 AM
 
Location: Katy-zuela
4,852 posts, read 8,988,044 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NEsananto View Post
And Houston took it from San Antonio, the original regional capital.
The only reason it was moved further east was because it was too close to Mexico (when they claimed that Texas ended on the Nueces River). You can have it if you want it; it's a perfect setting for the state capital compared to Austin.
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Old 03-13-2008, 01:09 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
2,851 posts, read 5,586,378 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goozer View Post
It does seem that way. Not here in Georgia, where Atlanta is the capital, but certainly in many other states. In fact, given the trend, its kind of surprising that Macon isn't the capital of Georgia. Smaller, more central and less cosmopolitan, just like Olympia, WA, Salem, OR, Albany, NY, Dover, DE, and many many others.
From 1777 to 1868 Georgia had six different state capitals. Macon was the capital from 1864 to 1865. Georgia finally settled on Atlanta in 1868. The other capitals (besides Savannah and Augusta) were close to the center of the state.
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Old 03-14-2008, 11:56 AM
 
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Iowa's first territorial capital was Burlington, on the Mississippi River, the territory's wastern boundary. Then it was moved to Iowa City, 60 miles west of the Mississippi. When statehood was achieved, the capital was Des Moines, just a little south west of the dead center of the state. Geographically, it made sense, but the center of the state's population remains miles to the east of Des Moines to this day.
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Old 03-14-2008, 04:02 PM
 
Location: Sacramento, CA
1,196 posts, read 4,339,452 times
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Carson City was chosen as Nevada's state capital because at the time it was one of the major cities. Virginia City was the largest, it was a huge mining town with 30k people, it even had a 6 story building in the 1870s I believe, and the 1st elevator west of the Mississippi. Virginia City died down after all of the silver was mined, and because of the railroad Reno became the major city in the state.

Vegas didn't come into play until WAY later.
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:18 PM
 
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Default Not all state capitals are less populated

most state capitals are in the center of the most populated areas of the state. some states population is so spread out, so that its in the middle of the state, so that its more dirrectly centered and easily accesed by the rest of the state. Kentucky for example, Louisville isnt the capital, neither is lexington, but frankfort is in the middle of those and more centered into the population of the state, so theres good transportation to both of those major cities.

the only four states which there capitals arent in the populated center would be:
Florida: Tallahassee does not have that easy of access to the rest of the state

Wyoming: Cheyenne is its biggest city, but its not that big. and its miles away from citys like Casper, Jackson, and Rock Springs.

Alaska: this state would have to be the worst, because Juneau is hundreds and hundreds of miles away from Anchorage or Fairbanks. my oppinion, i think Fairbanks should be the Alaskan Capital.

Nevada: Carson City isnt that good of a choice for a capital city, because it lacks access to Nevada's biggest city, Las Vegas.

And alot of state capitals are the states largest city, or really close to it, and really important to the state economically. these states are

Arizona: Pheonix
Massachusetts: Boston
Colorado: Denver
Georgia: Atlanta
Indiana: Indianapolis
Iowa: Des Moines
Tennessee: Nashville
Idaho: Boise
Rhode Island: Providence
Connecticut: Hartford
California: Sacramento
Alabama: Montgomery
Kansas: Topeka
Louisiana: Baton Rouge
Minnesota: St. Paul
Mississippi: Jackson
Nebraska: Lincoln
North Carolina: Raleigh
South Carolina: Columbia
Ohio: Columbus
Oklahoma: Oklahoma City
Texas: Austin
Virginia: Richmond
West Virginia: Charleston
Utah: Salt Lake City
Wisconsin: Madison





so not all state capitals are less populated, quite few of them are the biggest city in the state.
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Kentucky
2,927 posts, read 7,571,504 times
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Small town capitals

Olympia, WA
Salem, OR
Carson City, NV (no where near the center of the state)
Helena, MT
Cheyenne, WY (no where near the center of the state)
Santa Fe, NM
Pierre, SD
Bismarck, ND
Jefferson City, MO
Frankfort, KY
Charleston, WV
Dover, DE
Concord, NH
Montpelier, VT
Augusta, ME
Juneau, AK (no where near the center of the state)
Annapolis, MD

Looks like the majority of states have state capitals in larger cities.

Last edited by InLondon; 04-23-2008 at 01:27 PM..
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:46 PM
 
909 posts, read 2,704,226 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannyBanany View Post
Pierre, South Dakota is the nation's smallest capital city. It's located in the center and on the banks of the Missouri River, South Dakota's largest body of water. It's kind of a special capital.

and your wrong DannyBanny, Montpilier is the nations smallest capital city, with a population in the 8,000 range
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:54 PM
 
Location: 3219'03.7"N 10643'55.9"W
8,114 posts, read 17,318,097 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision-Quest View Post
and your wrong DannyBanny, Montpilier is the nations smallest capital city, with a population in the 8,000 range
However, I think Pierre, Dover, and Juneau are the only three state capitols not in close proximity to an interstate highway.
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