The United States of America



                       The United States of America 


                                                              - 7


                                ³ 2001

     1. The USA
     2. American symbols
     3. The US government
     4. What are americans fond of?
     5. The capital of the usa
     6. places of sightseeing
     7. holidays in the usa
     8. famous people of america

                        The united states of america.
      The United States of America is the  fourth  largest  country  in  the
world (after Russia, Canada and China). It occupies  the  southern  part  of
North America and stretches from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean. It  also
includes Alaska in the north and Hawaii in  the  Pacific  Ocean.  The  total
area of the country is about nine and a half million square kilometres.  The
USA borders on Canada in the north and on Mexico in the south. It  also  has
a seaboarder with Russia.
      The USA is made up of 50  states  and  the  District  of  Columbia,  a
special federal area where  the  capital  of  the  country,  Washington,  is
situated. The population of the country is about 250 million.
      If we look at the map of the USA, we can see lowlands  and  mountains.
The highest mountains are  the  Rocky  Mountains,  the  Cordillera  and  the
Sierra Nevada. The highest peak is  Mount  McKinley,  which  is  located  in
      America's largest rivers are the Mississippi, the  Missouri,  the  Rio
Grande and the Columbia. The Great Lakes on the border with Canada  are  the
largest and deepest in the USA.
      The climate of the country varies greatly. The coldest regions are  in
the north. The climate of Alaska is arctic. The climate of the central  part
is continental. The south has subtropical climate. Hot  winds  blowing  from
the Gulf of Mexico often bring  typhoons.  The  climate  along  the  Pacific
coast is much warmer than that of the Atlantic coast.
      The USA is a highly developed industrial country. It  is  the  world's
leading producer of copper and oil and the world's second producer  of  iron
ore  and  coal.  Among  the  most  important  manufacturing  industries  are
aircraft, cars, textiles, radio and television  sets,  armaments,  furniture
and paper.
      Though mainly European and African in origin, Americans  are  made  up
from nearly all races and nations, including Chinese and native Americans.
      The largest cities are New York, Los Angeles,  Chicago,  Philadelphia,
Detroit, San Francisco and others.
      The United States is a federal union of 50 states, each of  which  has
its own  government.  The  seat  of  the  central  (federal)  government  is
Washington,  DC.  According  to  the  US  Constitution  the  powers  of  the
government are divided  into  3  branches:  the  executive,  headed  by  the
President, the legislative, exercised by the Congress,  and  the  juridical.
The Congress consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives.  There
are  two  main  political  parties  in  the  USA:  the  Republican  and  the

                              American Symbols

      The American flag is often called The Stars and Stripes, it is  also
called "Old Glory". It represents the  growth  of  the  nation.  It  has  13
horizontal stripes, 7 red and 6  white  which  stand  for  the  original  18
states. In the top left hand corner there are  50  white  stars  on  a  blue
background: one star for each state.  The  national  anthem  of  the  United
States is The Star Spangled Banner". The words written  during  the  Anglo-
American war of 1812-1814 and set to the music of an old song.  Every  state
has its own flag, its own emblem and its own anthem too.
      The eagle became the national emblem of the country in 1782. It has an
olive branch (a symbol of peace) and arrows (a symbol of strength). You  can
see the eagle on the back of a dollar bill.
      The Statue of Liberty is the symbol of American democracy.  It  stands
on Liberty Island in New York. It one of the first things  people  see  when
they arrive in New York by sea. This National Monument was a  present   form
France to the USA. France gave the statue to America in 1884 as a symbol  of
friendship. Liberty carries the torch of freedom - in  her  right  hand.  In
her left hand she is holding a tablet with the inscription "July  4,1776"  -
American Independence Day.

                               The US Congress

      The Congress of the United States is composed of  two  houses:  Senate
and the House of Representatives. The Senate presents  the  states  and  the
House represents the population according  to  its  distribution  among  the
states. Each state is guaranted at least one representative  in  the  House.
The  remainder  are  apportioned  among  the  states  according   to   their
population. The Senate of US is composed one of the hundred  members    two
being elected from each state. Senators are chosen for six years,  one-third
retiring or seeking is re-elected every two years.  Two  senators  from  the
same state never finish their terms at the same time, one of them is  called
"Senior Senator" and the other - "Junior Senator".
      The presiding officer of the  senate  is  the  Vice-President  of  the
United States, The Vice-President is not a member of the chamber over  which
he presides and he sometimes is not a member of the party in power.
      The work of the US Congress is done mostly  in  different  committees.
The mostly important Rules, Appropriation Foreign Relations, Finance,  Armed
      In  the  House  of  Representatives  the  most  important  are  Rules,
Appropriation, Ways and Means, Judiciary, Agriculture.
      The chairmen of the standing committees are considered the real  rules
of the Senate and the House.

                         what are americans fond of?

      Americans are very fond of sport. The most popular sports in  the  USA
are football, which is played from April to October , baseball, played  from
September to December, basketball, played from  October  to  April  and  ice
hockey, played in most nor then cities from October to March.
      American football derives from the English game of rugby.  It  started
at Harvard University in the 1870's. It is a game for two  teams  of  eleven
men on the field. The object of the game is to have the control of the  ball
and to score points by carrying it across the goal-line.
      Baseball is a team game derived from the English game of  cricket.  It
is played with a bat and ball by two teams of nine players each, on a  field
with four bases. Baseball is the national game in the USA  and  it  is  very
popular in Canada too.
      Basketball is a game which nowadays is popular all over the world.  It
was invented in 1891. During the 20s the first US league  championship  was
organized. In the 70s  American Championship was divided into two  leagues:
the ABA (American Basketball Association), which does not exist  any  longer
and which played with a blue, red and  white  ball  and  the  NBA  (National
Basketball Association).
      There are more activities which Americans take part in such  as  golf,
swimming, tennis, aerobics, wrestling, etc.
                           The capital of the usa
      The beautiful city of Washington D.C. is the capital  of  the   United
States and the centre of its government. The capital  was  named  after  the
first president George Washington and was founded in 1790.  It  is  situated
on the Potomac River in the District of  Columbia.  Washington  is  not  the
largest city in the USA. It has a population only 900000.
      Washington D.C. has nothing characteristically American in it, as  its
conception is purely French. It has long wide  avenues,  gardens,  beautiful
parks and no  skyscrapers  at  all.  Washington  is  the  residence  of  the
President and the Congress of the USA. The White House  is  the  Presidents
residence, the Capitol  the seat of the American Congress. The largest  and
the tallest among the buildings is the  Capitol  with  its  great  House  of
Representatives and Senate Chamber. There  are  no  skyscrapers  because  no
other building must be taller than  the  Capitol.  All  american  presidents
except George Washington (the White House was not yet  built  in  his  time)
have lived in the White House. It was built in 1799.
      Washington is a large scientific and cultural centre, where there  are
many  research  institutes,  five  universities,  the  National  Academy  of
Science and the Library of Congress.
      There is one more well-known building in Washington    Pentagon,  the
residence of the US Military department. It is situated in  the  suburbs  to
the south of the Potomac.
                            places of sightseeing
      The Pentagon is a building in Arlington,  Virginia,  near  Washington,
D.C. It has the offices of the U.S. Department of  Defense.  The  Department
of Defense includes the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.
      The word pentagon comes from the Greek penta, which  means  five.  A
pentagon is a figure with five sides.  The  Pentagon  has  five  rings.  The
rings are inside each other. Each ring has  five  sides.  How  tall  do  you
think the Pentagon is? The answer is easy. Each ring is five stories tall.
      The Pentagon is the largest office  building  in  the  world.  It  has
seventeen miles of halls. People can get lost in the Pentagon. So the  walls
on each floor are a different color (brown, green,  red,  gray,  and  blue).
This helps people to know where they are. There are also many  maps  in  the
      The Pentagon is so big that it is like a city.  Almost  30,000  people
work there. The Pentagon has its own doctors, dentists, and nurses.  It  has
its own banks and stores. It has a post office, a  fire  department,  and  a
police department. It also has an important center for communications.  This
center guards the country. It is hundreds of  feet  under  the  ground.  The
Pentagon even has its own radio and TV stations.
                                  New York
      New York is one of the largest cities in the  world  and  the  biggest
seaport. It's the financial  capital  of  the  country.  Its  the  business
centre of the United States. The city is situated in New York State, at  the
mouth of the Hudson river. Its population is over eight million.  In  early
times the New York area was populated by Indians. It is here in Wall  street
many business offices, banks and world famous New York  stock  exchange  are
      New York is an industrial and cultural centre of the country. The most
important  branches  of  industry  are  those  producing  vehicles,   glass,
chemicals. New York is also a great cultural centre. It  has  many  museums,
art galleries, theatres, ballet. There are two world-famous streets  in  New
York  Broadway and Fifth Avenue. Broadway is the  centre  of  the  theatres
and night life. Fifth Avenue is the great shopping, hotel and club avenue.
      The Empire State Building is at  Fifth  Avenue.  It's  a  102-storeyed
building, was built in 1931. The Metropolitan Museum  of  Art  is  at  Fifth
Avenue. It includes hundreds of world famous masterpieces and attracts  many
      The Statue of Liberty is the symbol of American democracy.  It  stands
on Liberty Island in New York port. Liberty.
      Today New York City is informally called The Big Apple,  The  origin
of this name is unknown , but it is popular all over the world.

                                BEVERLY HILLS
      Most visitors to Los Angeles, California want to go  and  see  Beverly
Hills. This is where you find the homes of  the  movie  stars.  But  Beverly
Hills is not Los Angeles. It is h small city next to Los Angeles.
      All kinds of celebrities live in Beverly Hills. These celebrities  may
be movie stars, television stars, sports  stars,  or  other  people  in  the
news. Tourists can buy special maps for the homes of the stars. These  homes
are very beautiful. They usually have swimming pools and tennis courts.  But
some times you cannot see very much. The  homes  have  high  wall  or  trees
around them.
      Beverly Hills is also famous for Rodeo Drive. This is one of the  most
expensive shopping streets in the United States. Rodeo Drive started  to  be
an elegant street in the 1960s.  Many  famous  stores  were  opened  on  the
street. People liked all the new styles and fashions they could buy.  Today,
you  can  find  the  most  expensive  and  unusual  clothing,  jewelry,  and
furniture in the world on  Rodeo  Drive.  Rodeo  Drive  is  a  very  special
street. When you want to park your car in public parking, an attendant  will
come and park your car for you.
      Beverly Hills is really a small city. Only about  35,000  people  live
there. But during the day more than 200,000 people come to Beverly Hills  to
work or to shop.
                             Holidays in the USA
      There are no national holidays in the United States. Each  of  the  50
states has jurisdiction  over  its  holidays.  In  practice,  however,  most
states observe the  federal  (legal)  public  holidays,  even  though  the
President and Congress can  legally  designate  holidays  only  for  federal
government employees.
      Ten holidays per year are proclaimed by the federal  government.  They
are as follows:
       New Year's Day (January 1)
       Martin Luther King Day (third Monday in January)
       George Washingtons Birthday (third Monday in February)
       Memorial Day (last Monday in May)
       Independence Day (July 4)
       Labour Day (first Monday in September)
       Columbus Day (second Monday in October)
       Veteran's Day (November 11)
       Thanksgiving Day (fourth Thursday in November)
       Christmas (December 25).
      There is no many traditional holidays, observed by a large  number  of
Americans,  which  are  neither  legal  nor  official.   Among   these   are
Valentines Day, St. Patrics Day, Mothers Day and Halloween (the last  day
of October).
      Valentines Day has had a long and romantic history. February  14  was
the Roman date of the festival, where were games and dancing and  then  each
young man drew from an urn the name of the girl who would be his  sweetheart
for the coming year. In the seventh century the festival began to be  called
St. Valentines Day.
      Valentines Day is  the  sweet-hearts  holiday  when  people  in  love
express affection for each other in different ways. The young people can  do
it though a small gift or a card.
      On October 31, Americans celebrate Halloween. Halloween  means  "holy"
(hallow) evening (een). This is the evening before the  Christian  holiday
 All Saints Day. On All Saints Day, Christians  remember  the  saints.  But
Halloween is even older than Christianity.
      Before Christianity, people in Europe  believed  that  on  October  31
ghosts of dead people came back. To scare the ghosts,  people  dressed  like
devils and were very noisy. They also made big  fires  to  keep  the  ghosts
away. Later, people did not believe in ghosts, but  they  kept  the  day  of
Halloween for fun.
      Immigrants came from Europe to  America  and  brought  with  them  the
custom of Halloween. Halloween has some strange symbols. One symbol  is  the
jack-o'-lantern in the window. The jack-o-lantern is to scare  the  ghosts.
People cut the pumpkin, throw away all of the inside, and cut a face in  it.
Then they put a candle inside of it. Jack-o-lanterns  usually  look  scary,
      Today, in the United States, Halloween is very popular with  children.
They wear masks and special costumes. They want to look like  skeletons  and
ghosts. Then they go from house to house and say, Trick or  treat!  People
give them  candies,  cookies,  or  fruit.  When  people  give  nothing,  the
children sometimes play tricks on them.
                              Independence Day
      On  July  4  the  Americans  celebrate  their   national   holiday   
Independence Day. The United States gained  independence  as  a  result   of
gradual and painful process. By  the  mid  1700s,it  became  difficult  for
thirteen British colonies in the New World to  be  ruled  by  a  king  3.000
miles across the ocean. The British  empire  imposed  high  taxes  upon  the
      In 1774, the First Continental Congress drew up a list  of  grievances
against the British  crown.  This  document  was  the  first  draft  of  the
document that would formally separate colonies from England.  In  1775,  the
Revolutionary  War  began  July  2,1776,  the  Second  Continental  Congress
presented a  second  draft  of  the  list  of  grievances.  On  July  4  the
Continental Congress  approved the Declaration  of  independence.   But  the
War of independence lasted  until  1783.  After  the  war  Independence  Day
became an official holiday.
      On July 4, Americans have holiday  from  work.  People  have  day-long
picnics with favorite foods like hot dogs, hamburgers, potato  salad,  baked
beans. Lively music is heard everywhere. People play baseball or compete  at
three-legged races.  or  pie-eating  or  water-melon-eating  contests.  Some
cities have parades with people dressed as  the  original  founding  fathers
who march to the music of high school bands. In the  evening  people  gather
to watch firework displays. Wherever Americans are  around  the  globe  they
will get together to celebrate Independence Day.
      In1620, a  religious community sailed across  the  Atlantic  Ocean  to
settle in the New World. They settled in what is now known as the  state  of
Massachusettes. Their first winter in America was  difficult.  They  arrived
too late to grow a  rich  harvest.  Moreover,  half  the  colony  died  from
desease. The following spring the Iroquois Indians taught them how  to  grow
corn. Indians showed them also how to grow other crops and how to  hunt  and
      In the autumn of 1621 they got a beautiful harvest  of  corn,  barley,
beans and pumpkins. The colonists had much  to  be  thankful  for,  so  they
planned a feast. Local Indian chief and ninety  Indians  were  present.  The
colonists learned from Indians  how to cook cranberries and dishes  of  corn
and pumpkins.
      In following years many of the colonists celebrated the harvest with a
feast of thanks. After  the  United  States  gained  independence,  Congress
recommended one yearly day of thanksgiving for  the  whole  country.  Later,
George Washington suggested  the  date  November  26  as  Thanksgiving  Day.
Then, after the civil war, Abraham Lincoln suggested the  last  Thursday  in
November to be the day of thanksgiving.
      On Thanksgiving Day, family members gather at the house  of  an  older
relative, even if they live far away. All give thanks  for  everything  good
they have. Charitable organization  offer traditional meal to the homeless.
      Food, eaten at the first thanksgiving, have  become  traditional.  The
traditional thanksgiving mean consists of roast turkey  stuffed  with  herb-
flavoured bread,  cranberry  jelly,  mashed  potatoes,  pumpkin  pie.  Other
dishes may vary as to region: ham, sweet potatoes, creamed corn.

       Christmas is Christian holiday that celebrates  the  birth  of  Jesus
Christ. No  one knows the exact date of Christs  birth  but  most  Christie
celebrate Christmas on December 25. People  in the  United  States  decorate
their homes with Christmas trees, wreaths and ornaments.  City  streets  are
filled with colored lights; the sound of bells and Christmas carols  can  be
heard everywhere.
       Children write letters to Santa Claus and tell him what presents they
would like to get. Many department stores hire people to wear a Santa  Claus
costume and listen to childrens reguests. People send  Christmas  cards  to
relatives and friends.
      A Christmas tree is one of the  main  symbols  of  Christmas  in  most
homes. Presents are placed under the tree. On  Christmas  Eve  or  Christmas
morning, families open their presents. Some children hang  up  stockings  so
Santa Claus can fill them with candy, fruit and other small gift.
      In many parts of the United States groups of people walk from house to
house and sing Christmas carols. Some people give  singers  money  or  small
gifts or invite them for a warm drunk.
      Many people attend church  services  on  Christmas  Eve  or  Christmas
moning. They listen to readings from Bible and singing Christmas carols.
      A traditional Christmas dinner  consists  of  stuffed  turkey,  mashed
potatoes, cranberry sauce and a variety of other dishes. Some families  have
ham or roast goose of turkey. Pumpkin pie, plum pudding, and  fruitcake  are
favourite desserts.

                          famous people of america
                                 MARK TWAIN
      Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known to most people as Mark Twain, was born
and spent his boyhood in a small town on  the  Mississippi  River.  When  he
grew up, he became a river pilot.
      Later he went west and worked as a newspaper reporter. While he was on
this job he began to sign his articles Mark Twain. From  then  on  Clemens
used Mark Twain as his pen-name.
      Clemens worked on other newspaper, travelled, and gave lectures.
      Clemens spent his summers on his farm. There he wrote The  Adventures
of Tom Sawyer, published in 1876. Tom in the story is  really  Mark  Twain.
Huckleberry Finn is his close boyhood  friend,  Tom  Blankenship.  The  book
tells of the boys exciting adventures.
      Later Clemens wrote a sequel, The Adventures  of  Huckleberry  Finn.
Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn are among the most  popular  books  ever
published in the United States. Among Mark Twains other books are Joan  of
Arc, Life on the Mississippi.

                               ABRAHAM LINCOLN
      Abraham Lincoln was the sixteenth president of the United  States.  He
was born in Kentucky in 1809. His family was very poor. When Lincoln  was  a
boy, he worked on his familys farm. He did not  go  to  school.  He  taught
himself to read and write. Later, Lincoln studied law and became  a  lawyer.
After that, he became a politician.
      Everybody liked Abraham Lincoln because he was intelligent  and  hard-
working. Lincoln was very ambitious. He wanted to be good at  everything  he
did. He said that he wanted to win the race of life. He was also kind  and
honest. People called him Honest Abe.
      Lincoln became president in 1860. In 1861, there was a war between the
North and the South of the United States. The people in the South  wanted  a
separate government from the United States.  The  North  wanted  the  United
States to stay together as one  country.  Lincoln  was  the  leader  of  the
North. In the war, brother killed brother. The  Civil  War  was  four  years
      The North won the Civil War. The war ended on April 9, 1865. Six  days
later, President Lincoln and his  wife  went  to  the  theatre.  Inside  the
theatre, a man went behind the president and  shot  him  in  the  head.  The
mans name was John Wilkes Booth. He was a supporter of the  South.  Lincoln
died the next morning.
                             THOMAS ALVA EDISON
      Thomas Alva Edison was born in 1847. He was sick a  lot  when  he  was
young. Edisons mother taught him lessons at home and he  only  studied  the
things he wanted to know. At the age of  ten,  he  read  his  first  science
book. After he read the book, he built a  laboratory  in  his  house.  Soon,
Edison started to invent things. He was  interested  in  the  telegraph  and
electricity. At the age of  twenty-three,  he  made  a  special  telegraphic
machine and sold it for a lot of money. With this money, he was now free  to
invent all the time.
      Edison started his own laboratory at Menio Park, New Jersey. He  hired
mechanics and chemists to help him.  He  worked  day  and  night.  Once,  he
worked on forty-five inventions at the same time. Edison did not sleep  very
much, but he took naps. He often fell asleep with his clothes on.
      Did you know Edison invented wax paper, fire alarms, the battery,  and
motion pictures? But his favourite invention was the phonograph,  or  record
player. He invented the phonograph in 1876. His other famous  invention  was
the light bulb. Edison died in 1931, at the age of eighty-four. He had  over
1,300 inventions to his name! Many people say that Edison  was  a  genius  
one of the smartest people in the world.
                              ERNEST HEMINGWAY
      Ernest Hemingway is one of the greatest 20th-century American writers.
His incredible career, and the legend which developed around his  impressive
personality, was that of a man of action,  a  devil-may-care  adventurer,  a
brave war correspondent, an amateur boxer, a big-game  hunter  and  deep-sea
fisherman, the victim of three car accidents and two plane  crashes,  a  man
of four wives and many loves, but above all a brilliant  writer  of  stories
and novels.
      Hemingway was born in 1899 in Oak Park, Illinois.  His  father  was  a
doctor who initiated the boy into the outdoor life of hunting,  camping  and
fishing. In high school Hemingway played football and wrote for  the  school
      In 1917, when the United States entered the First World War, Hemingway
left home and schooling to become a  young  reporter  for  the  Kansas  City
Star. He wanted to enlist for the war but was rejected  because  of  an  eye
injury from football. Finally he managed to go to  Europe  as  an  ambulance
driver for the Red Cross. He joined  the  Italian  army  and  was  seriously
      His war experience and adventurous life provided  the  background  for
his many short stories and novels. He achieved success with  A  Farewell  to
Arms, the story of a love affair  between  an  American  lieutenant  and  an
English nurse during the First World War.
      Hemingway actively supported the Republicans in the Spanish Civil  War
and wrote another successful novel of war, love and death. It was  For  Whom
the Bell Tolls.
      During the Second World War Hemingway was a war correspondent first in
China and then in Europe. He  fought  in  France,  and  helped  to  liberate
      In his later years Hemingway lived mostly in Cuba  where  his  passion
for deep-sea fishing provided the background for The Old Man  and  the  Sea.
He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1954.
      Unwilling to  live  with  the  inevitable  physical  aging,  Hemingway
committed  suicide,  as  his  father  had  done  before  him  under  similar
                             THEODORE ROOSEVELT
      Theodore Roosevelt  was  the  twenty-sixth  president  of  the  United
States. He was president from 1901 to 1909. He was a very  intelligent  man.
He was also very energetic. He was a boxer, a soldier,  a  rancher,  and  an
      This energetic man was not strong when he  was  a  boy.  He  had  some
problems with his breathing. He had asthma. His  father  wanted  him  to  be
strong. Roosevelt learned to box and did many other sports.  Soon  Roosevelt
became strong and energetic.
      After he became president, Roosevelt kept his  body  strong.  He  even
boxed in the White House. One day, another boxer hit him in the  eye.  After
that accident, Roosevelt became blind in one eye.
      Theodore Roosevelts nickname was Teddy. Everybody called him Teddy.
When he was president, he often went hunting. One day he went  hunting  with
some friends and saw a little bear. He did not shoot the bear. He  said  the
bear was too small and must go free. The next day the story  of  the  little
bear was in the newspapers. The newspapers named  the  little  bear  Teddy
after the president. Soon  people  called  toy  bears  for  children  teddy
      When he left the White House, Teddy Roosevelt went to hunt in  Africa.
He then went to South America to explore  places  that  nobody  knew  about.
Everybody loved his energy.

"The United States of America"