America's East Coast is its "old country," where the early Europeans landed, founded towns and built new lives. It's where America's two wars on home soil—the Revolutionary War and the Civil War—were fought. As such, the cities and towns of the East Coast are full of historical sites and monuments, of "firsts" and "oldests." They've given America some of its most important historical and cultural figures as well; this includes, of course, all the Founding Fathers.
But these cities and towns haven't stayed frozen in time. They are thriving parts of the American life, contributing to pop culture, sports, technology, academia and technology. For example, the capital of Connecticut is home to most of America's insurance companies, making it a vital part of the U.S. economy. Do you know this city's name? Another town, a bit to the south, was home to one of America's best-known writers, a poet of the dark and macabre. That city remembered its literary history when it named the expansion NFL team it acquired in 1996. Do you know which Eastern city we're talking about?
You might have known that one right away, and you might also find some of these questions pretty easy (we doubt you'll have much difficulty identifying New York, for example). But trust us, this brain-teasing tour of the East Coast will get harder as you go along!
This is, of course, Atlanta. It got its nickname "the city too busy too hate" after the Civil War, when Atlanta was making strides to distance itself from the legacies of the war—segregation, racism and violence.
Some people, with only a little bit of exaggeration, call New York City "the capital of the world." After all, it is the home of the United Nations.
Of course it's Miami. The city grew up in the late 20th-century thanks to (so to speak) the introduction of cocaine from the south. This also gave rise to the TV hit "Miami Vice."
Boston is a favorite destination for Revolutionary War buffs and culture lovers in general. Occasionally, you'll hear it called "the Athens of America."
Baltimore has been the home of an number of important American cultural figures. Its football team, the Ravens, is named in honor of Edgar Allen Poe, who wrote "The Raven."
Savannah is a city on the coast of Georgia, known for its beauty and historic architecture. The novel "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" raised its profile back in the 1990s.
Philadelphia was founded by Pennsylvania's patron and namesake, William Penn. It is chock-full of early American history.
Augusta is the third-least-populated state capital. Only Montpelier in Vermont and Pierre, South Dakota are smaller. Augusta is also a university town, home to the University of Maine.
Buffalo got its Western-sounding name from a creek called "Buffalo Creek." It is home to the NFL's aptly named Buffalo Bills.
There are a number of town in the U.S. called "Albany." It's a connection to the Old World, as Scotland was once known as "Alba," and several of its kings were known as dukes of Albany.
Montpelier is the least-populated state capital in the U.S. It has a population that hovers just below 8,000 persons.
The "Nine Square Plan" is the four-by-four grid created by the English religious separatists who founded the town. Today, New Haven is better known for being the home of Yale University.
St. Augustine is a beautiful town on the northeastern coast of Florida. It is the oldest European-established settlement to be continuously occupied by people.
This populous town shares its name with the northern England city of Manchester. The Manchester-Nashua metro area is the largest in New Hampshire.
Newark is one of three airports serving the New York City area. The other two are John F. Kennedy and LaGuardia.
Today, "the Vineyard" is best known as a summer colony for wealthy East Coasters. But it was also home to a colony of deaf people, and there's a subset of sign language called "Martha's Vineyard Sign Language" commemorating this.
The Portland in Oregon was named for the one in Maine. Fun fact: The movie "Stand by Me" was accidentally set in Oregon after the screenwriter saw the reference to "Portland" in the Stephen King novella "The Body" and thought it was the one on the West Coast. As all King's readers know, most of his work is set in his home state of Maine.
Richmond is the capital of Virginia—one of four commonwealths (not states) in the U.S. It is also home to the Edgar Allen Poe Museum.
Charleston is a beautiful city with a tragic history. It was the major port of entry for African slaves prior to emancipation, and the Civil War began when Confederate forces seized Fort Sumter.
Charlotte is in the approximate center of North Carolina. It is also home to an important research university, the University of North Carolina.
The Neil Simon play was called "Lost in Yonkers." The town itself can be considered a suburb of New York City.
Rochester is New York state's third-largest city. It's highly rated in affordability and livability.
Winston-Salem is the home of the R.J. Reynolds tobacco company, a giant in cigarette manufacturers. They make Camel cigarettes but sold the "Winston" brand to a foreign company.
Say "Daytona" and most people will think first of motor sports. The association got started because Daytona's hard-packed sand beach was ideal of off-road racing.
This coastal city is home to Naval Station Norfolk, a huge U.S. Navy base. NATO also has one of its two Strategic Command posts there.
Hartford was founded in the 17th century, prior to American independence, which is why it's home to several "firsts." This includes the nation's oldest public art museum, the Wadsworth Athenaeum.
Rhode Island was another state founded by religious separatists. The "Providence" in question, then, is God's.
Raleigh was named for Sir Walter Raleigh, founder of the ill-fated Roanoke colony, whose population entirely disappeared. Look around online and you can find some crazy conspiracy theories about how the colony's fate might be linked to Raleigh's secret work as a spy for the British throne.
The Springfield in Massaschusetts can claim to be the first "Springfield" in America. It has followers in Missouri, Illinois and Oregon—and on TV, where "Springfield" is the home of the Simpson clan.
Tampa is on the west coast of Florida, sharing its name with Tampa Bay. It claims to be home to some of the best Cuban-sandwich makers in Florida. Take that, Miami!
Don't confuse the Charleston in West Virginia with the one on the South Carolina coast, though both were sites of Civil War battles. Likewise, West Virginia also does have a Charles Town. This can get confusing!
Columbia is second in size to Charleston and is more centrally located. Fort Jackson, located in Columbia, is the central site for U.S. Army Basic Training.
Columbus is just across the river from the state of Alabama. It is the third-largest city in Georgia.
Worcester, Massacusetts, is named for a city in England. Aloud, the name is pronounced "Wooster" or "Wuster."
Syracuse is home to Syracuse University, while Ithaca is home to Cornell. Both are major research schools, with Cornell a bit more highly thought of. Carl Sagan, Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye are all affiliated with it.