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All about Washington

Historical Note:

Mother Nature blows her top . . .

On May 18, 1980 at 8:33 AM the state of Washington saw the violent side of Mother Nature as the volcanic Mount St. Helens displayed her spectacular power that until then had been lying dormant beneath her placid snow-capped top. A seemingly gentle white haired lady unleashed her fiery temper on her unsuspecting children. With a majestic roar and a rumble that measured 5.1 on the Richter scale, the volcano violently erupted, hurling a blanket of dirt and ash into the pristine mountain air. Nearby Spirit Lake rose 200 feet as the debris plunged to its bottom. Thousands of acres of trees fell in bizarre fishbone patterns. The terrifying blast shattered and splintered anything in its path while leaving a cover of hot volcanic rubble in its wake. Today Mount St. Helens is once again calm; animal and plant life have returned to her borders. But scientists can't predict whether or not there will be future eruptions, or when and if other Cascade volcanoes nearby will also erupt.

Name Origin: American. (named after George Washington)

Capital: Olympia

Population: 5,343,000

Area: 68,139 square miles

Statehood: November 11, 1899 (42nd state)

Nickname: The Evergreen State

Motto: "By and by"

Famous For: Mount St. Helens, Redwoods, Olympic National Park, Grand Coulee Dam, Space Needle, Pike Place Market, Puget Sound, San Juan Islands, Mount Rainer, Kettle Falls, Cascade Mountains, Apples, Jets, Hi-Tech.

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