Some of the earliest explorers from Spain thought that Amazon women rule this island, and therefore they named it after Queen Califia, who was a black Amazon warrior queen. The California of today is equally mysterious and great, and it has a mix of different cultures, geographic segments, and breathtaking nature to explore. Therefore, we will go over some of the most interesting facts about this western American state.
1. The Grizzly Bear State
California was also known as the Grizzly Bear State, but when it experienced a population boom, the bears were nearly wiped out. It is now known as “the Golden State.”
The state motto of Cali is “Eureka”, which means “I have found” This famous saying dates back to the gold rush period, and refers to the discovery of gold.
3. America’s Richest Farming Region
California is at the top of the list in agricultural and dairy products in the USA and has the largest almond processing plant in the world. It is refining 12 million pounds each day. California also has a population of 5 million cows which generate north of $1 billion per year. The state is also rich in and famous for fruit and vegetables, as well as wine.
4. The Tallest, Largest, and Oldest Tree in the World
The largest tree in the world which is the General Sherman Tree in Sequoia National Park, the tallest tree, which is a coastal redwood of secret identity, as well as the oldest tree in the world, a bristlecone pine tree from the White Mountains called Methuselah all lives in California. The oldest standing tree in the world is around 4,650 years old.
5. A Harbinger to America’s Economy
California has a trillion dollar economy in gross state product. It is the first state ever to achieve this. If this was a separate country, it would be the eighth largest economy in the world and have the same GDP as Italy. That is impressive.
6. California Gold Rush
On January 24, 1848, James Marshall, who was a foreman that worked in Coloma, California, found a shiny gold nugget in the American River. These amazing news triggered a massive movement of gold seekers called “forty-niner.” They were hoping to make a fortune here and start a new life. Thanks to this so-called Gold Rush, California earned its nickname as the Golden State.
7. Largest Mass Migration in History
Speaking of the Gold Rush, it was one of the largest mass migrations that the world has ever seen. As a result, the population in the promising state increased from 14,000 to 200,000.
8. Laundry Crisis
During this same period, which was the year 1849, miners would send their laundry to Honolulu, Hawaii, because of the extremely high costs of this service in California.
9. Ghost Town
The Gold Rush is not the only thing like this to happen in California. The Silver Rush in the Calico Mountains ran from 1881 until 1896. Calico was a town was near the place of a major silver strike in 1881 when the price of silver dropped in the mid-1890s. By the early, 1900s Calico was completely deserted and it resembled a true ghost town.
10. Where Dreams Come True
The movie industry of Hollywood has a very interesting backstory. The movie makers wanted to go away from Thomas Edison, who was in New Jersey and who had patents that practically covered the entire process of making a movie. However, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California was against these patent claims of Edison, and because of this, all of the movie makers moved here and began their work freely.
California is the only place that had hosted the summer and the winter Olympic Games, which is quite special. There are also many major sports teams in the country, famous worldwide.
12. Home to Death Valley
California’s Death Valley is both the hottest and driest place in all of America, and summer temperatures here often go over 200 °F.
13. Water, Everywhere, but No Water To Drink
Unfortunately, water is rare in California and the farmers actually make more money by selling water supplies than their crops. Rice farmers sell water supplies to the thirsty people of South California at extremely high rates.
14. A Mecca of Wine
We mentioned that Cali is a major grower of fruit, involving grapes. And they put them to good use, as around 17 million gallons of exotic wines are produced every year in California. The state is the largest wine state in the US, and more importantly, the 4th leading wine producer in the world. They only trail Italy, France, and Spain.
15. Green Snowfall
Back in 1955, the people of California experienced a completely unique weather phenomenon, when the snowfall in their area was green from a phosphorescent effect. Residents who tasted it soon died, while those who took it with their bare hands got itching and rashes.
16. The Watermelon Snow
You can see this phenomenon while hiking the slopes of Sierra Nevada foothills during the summer season. It is pink in color and smells and tastes like watermelon. The microscopic algae that cause it are called Chlamydomonas nivalis.
17. First Blue Jeans
Levi Strauss, who was a 44-year-old German immigrant, came up with the first blue pair of jeans in San Francisco on May 20, 1873. They have since been one of the most famous brands in the world.
18. The First McDonald’s Restaurant
People from California are among the luckiest on the planet because they were first to try the mouthwatering food of McDonald’s. Their first restaurant was opened here in 1940, by brothers Richard and Maurice McDonald. Its home was in the city of San Bernardino, California.
19. A Paradise for Everyone
Many fan-favorite products and companies have their home in this state. These include the Fortune Cookie, Apple computers, Disneyland, the Frisbee, Barbie dolls, skateboards, and video arcade games. How different would the world be without these?
20. Artichoke Queen To Marilyn Monroe
Castroville, California is generally considered to be the Artichoke Capital of the World. Back in 1947, a young woman named Norma Jean became the first Artichoke Queen of Castroville. She later became the world-famous actress Marilyn Monroe.
21. Weird Laws of California
You allowed throwing a Frisbee at the Los Angeles County beach only with the permission of a lifeguard. Bathhouses are against the law here, while women cannot drive while wearing a housecoat.
22. Yosemite National Park
Famous for the massive granite mountains and beautiful waterfalls, Yosemite National Park is a natural gem for California and the world. It is spread on around 1,100 square miles, which is almost as big as Rhode Island. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage since 1984.
23. Most Populous State
With nearly 40 million population as of the year 2015, California is the most populated state in the USA.
24. World’s 5th Largest Economy
In 2018, the economy of California surpassed the United Kingdom and is now the 5th largest economy in the world.
25. World’s Largest Companies
California is also the home to four of the ten largest companies when it comes to market capitalization. This is mostly thanks to the Silicon Valley in San Francisco.
26. Home of the World’s Richest People
Four of the ten richest people in the world live in California, Jeff Bezos ($126 billion), Bill Gates ($94.9 billion), Warren Buffet ($89.5 billion), and Bernard Arnault ($67.8 billion). It also has one of the biggest population of millionaires and billionaires in the world.
27. Global Trendsetter
California is one of the global trendsetters when it comes to culture, politics, fashion, and innovation. It is the birthplace of the American Film Industry, the Internet, hippie counterculture, and the computers we use every day. The Greater Los Angeles Area is the center of the industry of entertainment, while the San Francisco Bay Area is the home of global technology.
28. The Hub of Agriculture Industry
The agriculture industry of California produces the highest number of units in the whole of the USA. The farms here produce more than 400 different commodities and more than 60% of all fruits and nuts in America.
29. California English
There are over 70 indigenous languages in California, making it one of the most linguistically diverse areas on the planet. This diversity has brought a wide variety of changes to American English, and it is known as California English. It even has its own Vowel Shift.
30. California is Less Religious
According to a survey that took place in 2008, Californians are much less religious than the national average. Around 71% of Americans is “absolutely certain” that God exists, while only 62% of Californians agree with this.
31. Sister State Relationships
California has the largest number of Sister States around the world. This relationship is a formal declaration of friendship between two states, nations, or regions, and it symbolizes mutual goodwill and cooperation.
Back in 1992, California was the first state with a Senate delegation made up of women only.
33. Liberal State
When it comes to political ideology, California is a trendsetter, and its people are considered more liberal than in any other state.
34. Droughts and Wildfires
The geography of California is quite diverse and ranges from the Pacific Coast to the Sierra Nevada Mountain range, and from the redwood–Douglas fir forests to the Mojave Desert. Because of such diverse geographic features, there are extreme droughts and wildfires happening around the state each year.
35. Deadliest Wildfire in History
Last year, California suffered the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in the history of the state. Several people died, while the damages of properties and wildlife lost are estimated to be in the billions. Some of the coastal homes of Hollywood celebrities like Miley Cyrus, Gerard Butler, and Robin Thicke went up in flames, while Lady Gaga, Orlando Bloom and many other A-list stars were evacuated.