How the States Got Their Shapes

Season 1 Episode 6

Use It or Lose It

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Aired Tuesday 10:00 PM Jun 14, 2011 on The History Channel

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    • Dr. Kern: When you get to Ohio, it is the very first state carved out of the public land system of the United States. Ohio was kind of a guinea pig for the country.
      Mark: The process for becoming a state is not in the constitution, and so there's a separate piece of legislation that they passed , the ordinance of 1787.
      Brian: This ordinance included the instruction manual for shaping states. First, there's a territory. Then, it can apply to become a state. This was a radical shift from everything that had been tried before.
      H. W.: This was novel and revolutionary - because - previously, when countries expanded, the new regions weren't admitted as the equals, they were created as colonies, they were subordinate.

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