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Portal:North America

The North America Portal

Location North America.svg

North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered by some[quantify] to be a northern subcontinent of the "American continent." It is bordered to the north by the Arctic Ocean, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the west and south by the Pacific Ocean, and to the southeast by South America and the Caribbean Sea.

North America covers an area of about 24,709,000 square kilometers (9,540,000 square miles), about 16.5% of the earth's land area and about 4.8% of its total surface. North America is the third largest continent by area, following Asia and Africa, and the fourth by population after Asia, Africa, and Europe. In 2013, its population was estimated at nearly 579 million people in 23 independent states, or about 7.5% of the world's population, if nearby islands (most notably around the Caribbean) are included.

North America was reached by its first human populations during the last glacial period, via crossing the Bering land bridge approximately 40,000 to 17,000 years ago. The so-called Paleo-Indian period is taken to have lasted until about 10,000 years ago (the beginning of the Archaic or Meso-Indian period). The Classic stage spans roughly the 6th to 13th centuries. The Pre-Columbian era ended in 1492, with the beginning of the transatlantic migrations—the arrival of European settlers during the Age of Discovery and the Early Modern period. Present-day cultural and ethnic patterns reflect interactions between European colonists, indigenous peoples, African slaves and their descendants.

Owing to Europe's colonization of the Americas, most North Americans speak European languages such as English, Spanish or French, and their states' cultures commonly reflect Western traditions.

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Exsudoporus frostii (formerly Boletus frostii), commonly known as Frost's bolete or the apple bolete, is a bolete fungus first described scientifically in 1874. A member of the family Boletaceae, the mushrooms produced by the fungus have tubes and pores instead of gills on the underside of their caps. Exsudoporus frostii is distributed in the eastern United States from Maine to Georgia, and in the southwest from Arizona extending south to Mexico and Costa Rica. A mycorrhizal species, its fruit bodies are typically found growing near hardwood trees, especially oak.

Exsudoporus frostii mushrooms can be recognized by their dark red sticky caps, the red pores, the network-like pattern of the stipe, and the bluing reaction to tissue injury. Another characteristic of young, moist fruit bodies is the amber-colored drops exuded on the pore surface. Although the mushrooms are considered edible, they are generally not recommended for consumption because of the risk of confusion with other poisonous red-pored, blue-bruising boletes. E. frostii may be distinguished from other superficially similar red-capped boletes by differences in distribution, associated tree species, bluing reaction, or morphology. Read more...

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Multilevel streets in Chicago
Credit: User: SPUI
This map shows the complex interplay of the Multilevel streets in Chicago. Several major cities around the world have attempted to overcome problems with traffic density by building elevated or underground roadways. Chicago, Illinois goes one better with some triple-decker streets in an area of downtown beside the Chicago River and Lake Michigan.

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Andrew Jackson (March 15, 1767 – June 8, 1845) was an American soldier and statesman who served as the seventh president of the United States from 1829 to 1837. Before being elected to the presidency, Jackson gained fame as a general in the United States Army and served in both houses of the U.S. Congress. As president, Jackson sought to advance the rights of the "common man" against a "corrupt aristocracy" and to preserve the Union.

Born in the colonial Carolinas to a Scotch-Irish family in the decade before the American Revolutionary War, Jackson became a frontier lawyer and married Rachel Donelson Robards. He served briefly in the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate, representing Tennessee. After resigning, he served as a justice on the Tennessee Supreme Court from 1798 until 1804. Jackson purchased a property later known as The Hermitage, and became a wealthy, slaveowning planter. In 1801, he was appointed colonel of the Tennessee militia and was elected its commander the following year. He led troops during the Creek War of 1813–1814, winning the Battle of Horseshoe Bend. The subsequent Treaty of Fort Jackson required the Creek surrender of vast lands in present-day Alabama and Georgia. In the concurrent war against the British, Jackson's victory in 1815 at the Battle of New Orleans made him a national hero. Jackson then led U.S. forces in the First Seminole War, which led to the annexation of Florida from Spain. Jackson briefly served as Florida's first territorial governor before returning to the Senate. He ran for president in 1824, winning a plurality of the popular and electoral vote. As no candidate won an electoral majority, the House of Representatives elected John Quincy Adams in a contingent election. In reaction to the alleged "corrupt bargain" between Adams and Henry Clay and the ambitious agenda of President Adams, Jackson's supporters founded the Democratic Party. Read more...

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Gunslinger /ˈɡʌnslɪŋər/ and gunfighter are words used historically to refer to men in the American Old West who had gained a reputation of being dangerous with a gun and had participated in gunfights and shootouts. Gunman was a more common term used for these individuals in the 19th and early 20th century. Today, the term "gunslinger" is more or less used to denote someone who is quick on the draw with a pistol, but can also refer to riflemen and shotgun messengers. The gunfighter is also one of the most popular characters in the Western genre and has appeared in associated films, video games, and literature.

The gunfighter could be a lawman, outlaw, cowboy, or shooting exhibitionist, but was more commonly a hired gun who made a living with his weapons in the Old West. Read more...

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Vermont coppers

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Southwestern San Juan Mountains
Credit: Debivort
The San Juan Mountains are a rugged mountain range in the Rocky Mountains in southwestern Colorado. The Rio Grande rises on the east side of the range. The San Juan and Uncompahgre National Forest cover a large portion of the San Juan Mountains.

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