Capital City: Frankfort
Area Square Miles 39,732
Area Square kilometers 102,905
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. Kentucky is a Southern state situated in the Upland South, although the state is infrequently placed, geographically and culturally, in the Midwest. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth (the other three being Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts). Originally a part of Virginia, in 1792 it became the 15th state to join the Union. Kentucky is the 37th largest state in terms of total area, the 36th largest in land area, and ranks 26th in population.
Kentucky is known as the "Bluegrass State", a nickname based on the fact that native bluegrass is present in many of the pastures throughout the state, based on the fertile soil. It made possible the breeding of high quality livestock, especially thoroughbred horses. It is a land with diverse environments and abundant resources, including the world's longest cave system, Mammoth Cave National Park; the greatest length of navigable waterways and streams in the Lower 48 states; and the two largest man-made lakes east of the Mississippi River. It is also home to the highest per capita number of deer and turkey in the United States, the largest free-ranging elk herd east of Montana, and the nation's most productive coalfield. Kentucky is also known for thoroughbred horses, horse racing, bourbon distilleries, bluegrass music, automobile manufacturing, tobacco, and college basketball.