California Admission Day – 166 years in the Union

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The great bear on the California flag.
The great bear on the California flag.

Each year on September 9th, Californians celebrate California Admission Day. In 1850, California became the 31st state to enter the Union. In the last 166 years, California has had a rich and interesting history, and continues to be one of the most influential states in the country.

While most of us know about the history of our great state, there is still a lot to learn about California! Below are some fun facts about California.

California produces more than 60% of peaches in the United States. Georgia (the peach state) only produces 13%!

Way to grow: California is home to the world’s tallest tree (Hyperion the giant sequoia is over 379 feet tall), the world’s largest tree (General Sherman the sequoia has a diameter of over 25 feet), and the world’s oldest tree (Methuselah the bristlecone pine tree is estimated to be 4,650 years old!).

Livermore, California is home to the world’s oldest working lightbulb. It hasn’t burned out in more than 100 years!

Both the highest and lowest points in the contiguous United States are in California. The highest is Mt. Whitney (14,494 ft.) while the lowest is the Badwater Basin in Death Valley (282 ft. below sea level). Despite their differences in altitude, the two are less than 100 miles apart.

All Hass avocados can be linked back to a single tree. Unfortunately, the Hass Mother Tree developed a root fungus and died in 2002 at age 76.

It is estimated that there are more than 500,000 earthquakes recorded in California every year.

California is the only state that has hosted both the summer and winter Olympics. Los Angeles has hosted the Summer Games twice in both 1932 and 1984; Squaw Valley hosted the Winter Games in 1960.

While Presidents Herbert Hoover and Ronald Reagan both called California their home state, Richard Nixon is the only United States President to be born in California.

The state of California has a bigger population than all of Canada!

The Greek state motto “Eureka!” translates to “I have found it!” It was adopted in 1849 and refers to the Gold Rush occurring at the time.