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U.S.

Geography
Vocabulary
Words
Physical
Geography
Terms
TRIBUTARY
A smaller stream
or river that
flows into a
larger stream
or river

Mississippi River has many tributaries such


as the OHIO RIVER and the MISSOURI
RIVER
CONTINENTAL DIVIDE
An area of high ground that
divides the flow of rivers
towards opposite ends of a
continent.

Ex. Missouri R.
flows East;
Columbia R.
flows West
CONTINENTAL DIVIDE
Rivers east of the divide in the
Rockies flow EAST and empty
into the MISSISSIPPI River.
Rivers west of the divide in the
Rockies flow WEST into the
PACIFIC Ocean
BASINS
A generally flat region
surrounded by higher land
such as mountains and
plateaus.

Ex.
Great
Basin
CONTIGUOUS
States that are connected
or border one another

Ex. Alaska & Hawaii are


NOT contiguous
Human
Geography
Terms
COLONY
A territory inhabited and
controlled by people from
a foreign land.

Ex: U.S. was a colony


of Great Britain before we won the
Revolutionary War
PLANTATION
A large farm that grows
mainly one crop to sell

Ex.
Cotton

Tobacco
PIONEERS
American settlers who
traveled west to settle the
interior and western areas
of America

Many pioneers followed the


2,000 mile long OREGON
TRAIL west from Missouri
to Oregon Territory
ANNEXED
A territory formally added
(to a country)

+
HAWAII WAS ANNEXED IN 1859, BUT DID NOT
ACHIEVE STATEHOOD UNTIL AUGUST 21, 1959
TEXTILES
Cloth Products
BILINGUAL
A term used to describe
people who speak two
languages. Hello!

Hola!
Economic
Geography
Terms
MEGALOPOLIS
Giant urban (densely populated
area) area that includes a string
of cities that
have grown
together.

Ex. Boston to Washington D.C.


DIVERSIFY
For farmers, producing a
variety of crops instead of
just one

Ex.
Fruits
Vegetables
Grains
CORN BELT
Area of the Midwest U.S.
from Ohio to Nebraska where
raising corn is a major
economic activity
DAIRY BELT
Area of the Midwest U.S.
NORTH of the Corn Belt
where dairy farming is a
major economic activity
Ex.
Milk
Cheese
Yogurt
WHEAT BELT
Area of the U.S. Great Plains
region in which wheat
farming is a major economic
activity
Center-Pivot Irrigation
Type of irrigation that
uses sprinkler systems
mounted
on huge
rotating
wheels
STRIP MINING
Type of mining in which soil &
rock are stripped away so
miners can get to coal or other
resources buried just beneath
the surface
Ex:
Coal, Oil
Gold, Silver
Copper