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Old 02-01-2009, 10:50 AM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,077,915 times
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Most people take pride in the states where they live (myself included), and it's fun to engage in the "back and forth" of the rivalry between cities, states, etc. There's something that I always think about, though, and that's the fact that a lot of state boundaries are arbitrary. I understand that these "arbitrary" boundaries were determined by different means, but they're really just an imaginary line.

There are states (like Wisconsin, for example, who has mostly water boundaries - Great Lakes and Mississippi River),and other states with rivers, the ocean, mountains, etc. But, then there are the "arbitrary" borders. For example, when you cross from Wisconsin into Illinois, the only way you know you're in another state is the Welcome sign.

I'm attaching a site that shows the Principal Meridians in the U.S. What would the U.S. look like if somehow these "arbitrary" lines had helped to determine some of our state boundaries? Kind of interesting to think about.

Maybe I have too much time on my hands today.

http://www.blm.gov/cadastral/meridians.htm (broken link)
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:52 AM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,077,915 times
Reputation: 2275
Quote:
Originally Posted by NowInWI View Post
Most people take pride in the states where they live (myself included), and it's fun to engage in the "back and forth" of the rivalry between cities, states, etc. There's something that I always think about, though, and that's the fact that a lot of state boundaries are arbitrary. I understand that these "arbitrary" boundaries were determined by different means, but they're really just an imaginary line.

There are states (like Wisconsin, for example, who has mostly water boundaries - Great Lakes and Mississippi River),and other states with rivers, the ocean, mountains, etc. But, then there are the "arbitrary" borders. For example, when you cross from Wisconsin into Illinois, the only way you know you're in another state is the Welcome sign.

I'm attaching a site that shows the Principal Meridians in the U.S. What would the U.S. look like if somehow these "arbitrary" lines had helped to determine some of our state boundaries? Kind of interesting to think about.

Maybe I have too much time on my hands today.

http://www.blm.gov/cadastral/meridians.htm (broken link)
I copied it wrong - sorry.

Meridians
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:18 PM
 
Location: Western Hoosierland
18,264 posts, read 7,286,220 times
Reputation: 5943
Cool website! Indiana is basicly the same except for NW Indiana
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Old 02-02-2009, 06:05 PM
 
Location: West Michigan
12,084 posts, read 34,191,205 times
Reputation: 16839
Wow, here in MI we stay almost exactly the same. Close enough it isn't apparent there are any changes really.
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Old 02-04-2009, 12:18 PM
 
5,859 posts, read 14,063,505 times
Reputation: 3486
Yikes! This map makes this St. Paulite a Cheesehead! Splits our metro right in half. Some of my St Paul friends who live on the West Side stay Minnesotans, whole some of my frinds in SE Minneapolis join me with the Wisconsinites!

Fun web site!
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Old 02-04-2009, 03:18 PM
 
Location: New York City
4,036 posts, read 8,949,725 times
Reputation: 3708
Water boundaries create difficulties because they split an economic asset between two political entities. The most egregious example of this is New Jersey. It contains half of both the New York City metro area and the Philly metro area. This has made planning in those cities very complicated. They tried to solve the dilemma with The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, but there are still lots of inefficiencies and political fighting.

All of this is due to the caprice of a king who never set foot in his colonies. Arbitrary indeed.
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