The United States : A State Of The Usa Essay

1834 Words Oct 13th, 2016 8 Pages
As the United States spread west over the 18th and 19th centuries, new land was claimed and formed into territories (and eventually states) based on its wealth in natural resources and potential for settlement. Minnesota, made a state of the USA in 1858, is one such region taken in the westward expansion of the United Sates. But before Minnesota became a state, it is necessary to understand what the land is like, and why people have been and continue to be attracted to living in the climate of north Midwestern US.
Up until about 12,000 years ago, Canada and the northern half of the United States were covered in glaciers and ice sheets. As surface and atmospheric temperatures rose, the glaciers began to melt faster, moving south as a result. These melting glaciers scoured the landscape, ripping through loose soils and softer bedrocks such as sandstones and shales (Florin, 699). The resulting holes filled with water as the glaciers melted and receded, forming lakes. Over thousands of years, the glaciers left around 11,000 lakes larger than 4 hectares, giving Minnesota its name as the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” The glaciers also formed river valleys for the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers, which now cut the state roughly in half from the north to the south. The glacial melting, along with tectonic movements, enabled mid-continental climates to form into predictable and clearly defined seasons, most notably with hot summers and cold winters (NCDC, 1-2). With the departure of…

Related Documents