Each US State is usually known for something. South Dakota has Mount Rushmore, Arizona has the Grand Canyon, and Florida has, well, Florida Man. Needless to say, over its more than two-hundred-year period, the United States has cultivated a rich and sometimes bizarre history. More often than not, the weird and bizarre things are quickly forgotten in the history books, so we’re here to go through every US State and provide the bizarre things about them. Of course, we only do lists of 25, so this will most certainly be a two-parter. Ready travel coast to coast in search of weird facts? Here are 25 Bizarre Facts About Each US State, Part 1.
Stay tuned this time next week for part 2!
Alabama - Heaviest Member of Congress
Senator Dixon Hall Lewis was an Alabama Democrat and the heaviest member of Congress in history, weighing 500 pounds. He served eight consecutive terms before dying in 1848. The Senate made a special seat for him and his carriage had heavy duty springs installed.
Alaska - Freakishly Large Produce
With unusually long summer days, Alaskan farmers can grow some crazy big produce. In recent years, they’ve been able to produce a 35-pound broccoli, a 65-pound cantaloupe, and a 135-pound cabbage.
Arizona - Mystery Castle
There’s a castle built in Arizona near Phoenix by a man named John Gulley. What’s perplexing about this castle is that he built the entire thing by himself over the span of 15 years. Moreover, he abandoned his wife and daughter to do it, and no one knows why. Later, after his death, his wife and daughter were contacted by his lawyer saying they now owned the castle. It was the first they had heard from him since his disappearance.
Arkansas - Dead Blackbirds
On the last day of 2010, 1,000 blackbirds fell out of the sky, dead, in Beebe, Arkansas. Authorities had their theories of why it happened, from high winds to stress-related trauma, but couldn’t figure out anything conclusive.
California - Emperor of the United States
In 1859, San Francisco was home to the first Emperor of the United States, Joshua Norton I, or so he claimed in the bulletin newspaper. The editors published it as a joke. Still, he paraded around the city pretending to be the Emperor, and many began to play along, giving him free meals at restaurants and listening to his comical proclamations. He even made his own currency.