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  #21  
Old September 7th, 2008, 03:37 AM
DuQuense DuQuense is offline
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Where can I find population statistics for the thirteen colonies in 1776?
http://fisher.lib.virginia.edu/colle...ts/histcensus/
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  #22  
Old September 8th, 2008, 05:13 AM
Fiver Fiver is offline
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Originally Posted by Ran Exilis View Post
However, if the POD is during the American Civil War, then (plausibly) getting a balkanized America will be a bit tricky...
Not neccessarily. Confederacy's attempted secession was based on the idea that any state could secede at any time for any reason. And the South was not uniform on a variety of issues (expansion, internal improvements, the international slave trade, etc.) South Carolina almost didn't join the CSA because it maintained the same ban on the international slave trade that the USA did.

So if the Confederacy secedes, it will be naturally prone to fragmentation. Meanwhile, the US will have the CSA's example, which could lead to other sections breaking off.

Perhaps this could lead to Britain deciding that there's a limit to how big a successful country can be and having OTL's Canada becoming several separate countries. (Newfoundland was self-geverning and independant from Canada from 1907 to 1934 in OTL.)

Meanwhile, Mexico is divided into a CSA-backed French Mexico and a USA-backed Juarez government. States around the edges may try to go their own way, much like Yucatan and the Republic of the Rio Grande attempted in 1840, or seek foreign annexation like Yucatan did in 1847.

Of course (referencing the thread title) none of this is likely.
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  #23  
Old September 8th, 2008, 08:36 PM
Snake Featherston Snake Featherston is offline
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The nature of North America argues against a large scattering of nations, as does the result of the post-1492 plagues.

It might be possible to have different colonization and drawdowns of it lead to two nations in *Canada and at most, three in the *US, while *Mexico might possibly be split up into two or so nations, as well. So that in itself gets you 7 nations in NA as opposed to OTL.

Beyond that is stretching it, the American steppe and general flatness of North America argues for a strong centralization in the *US, and 3 nations is rather stretching it in the US. Even a balkanized US after the Revolution would sooner or later see one state rise to power in a Warring States fashion and impose unification on the region of the US as happened repeatedly in China and India.

It's also hard to see how after the plagues that followed Columbus and the nature of societies in the West and the Great Plains aside from the Pacific NW of both Canada and the US, the American Steppe and the West can avoid being united under one entity forever.

Perhaps in the 19th Century, the American Shi Huang analogue decides on a keyed-up Manifest Destiny or something once he succeeds in unifying the various factions or something?

Either way, due to post-1492 disease and the reality that the Great Plains are better suited for hunter-gatherer existence than settled existence...

Balkanized NA is unlikely. A more factionalized NA into a couple of large nations within the US and Canada of OTL might be more probable, depending on what you want to do.
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  #24  
Old September 8th, 2008, 08:37 PM
Snake Featherston Snake Featherston is offline
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Not neccessarily. Confederacy's attempted secession was based on the idea that any state could secede at any time for any reason. And the South was not uniform on a variety of issues (expansion, internal improvements, the international slave trade, etc.) South Carolina almost didn't join the CSA because it maintained the same ban on the international slave trade that the USA did.

So if the Confederacy secedes, it will be naturally prone to fragmentation. Meanwhile, the US will have the CSA's example, which could lead to other sections breaking off.

Perhaps this could lead to Britain deciding that there's a limit to how big a successful country can be and having OTL's Canada becoming several separate countries. (Newfoundland was self-geverning and independant from Canada from 1907 to 1934 in OTL.)

Meanwhile, Mexico is divided into a CSA-backed French Mexico and a USA-backed Juarez government. States around the edges may try to go their own way, much like Yucatan and the Republic of the Rio Grande attempted in 1840, or seek foreign annexation like Yucatan did in 1847.

Of course (referencing the thread title) none of this is likely.
How long after CS fragmentation before some enterprising Shi Huang wannabe comes along and attempts to impose a military unification? It's the same principle with a balkanized CSA as with a balkanized USA.
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  #25  
Old September 8th, 2008, 09:18 PM
SRT SRT is offline
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I think Mexico could be more than two nations, theoretically. It's very mountainous, at least, and given that both California and Texas became independent Republics, I'd say there's probably more room for outer states breaking off. Of course... California and Texas broke off because of all the Anglos moving in. The majority-Latino states really had no reason to break off. I'm just saying they might have been able to, had they wanted to.
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  #26  
Old September 8th, 2008, 09:43 PM
I Guangxu I Guangxu is offline
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With the western states still likely a part of Mexico, could Mexico have benefited from the gold and silver strikes discovered in those areas after they were taken by the US? Could this influx of wealth have made Mexico a more viable nation?

Further, with a unification of the American states in the late 19th/turn of the 20th century, could we see a belated rise in manifest destiny accompanying this new sense of nationalism? If this is the case, might the new USA enter into a belated Mexican-American War around the same time as WWI?

These are just some conjectures I've had. I'm throwing them out here to see if they spark anything.
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  #27  
Old September 8th, 2008, 09:59 PM
Snake Featherston Snake Featherston is offline
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Originally Posted by I, Guangxu View Post
With the western states still likely a part of Mexico, could Mexico have benefited from the gold and silver strikes discovered in those areas after they were taken by the US? Could this influx of wealth have made Mexico a more viable nation?

Further, with a unification of the American states in the late 19th/turn of the 20th century, could we see a belated rise in manifest destiny accompanying this new sense of nationalism? If this is the case, might the new USA enter into a belated Mexican-American War around the same time as WWI?

These are just some conjectures I've had. I'm throwing them out here to see if they spark anything.
It might, and that would be a very different contest, particularly if the Mexicans have managed to provide settlement in the territories the US took from them ITOL. A much stronger, more prosperous Mexico against a (likely) autocratically unified United States would actually be a decent war instead of the one-sided curbstomp OOTL.

Matter of fact, that's a TL worth writing.
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  #28  
Old September 8th, 2008, 11:05 PM
Kevin R. Kevin R. is offline
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For a balkanized America, the most obvious POD would probably be the failure of the Constitutional Convention. Maybe in this TL, Thomas Jefferson could be at the convention (he was in France during the event), and could push for a weaker federal government, leading to gridlock at the convention and a failure to amend the Articles of Confederation. Over the next ten years, disputes between the states slowly pull the young USA apart, until by 1800, the only thing left of the federal government is a rump state occupying a small area.

My predictions as to the development of North America if the US balkanizes according to the above lines. Feel free to give criticism regarding any of these possibilities.

New England: Will most likely merge into one nation. Trade-based economies, a noted support for a powerful government (the region was a hotbed for Federalism in the early decades of the USA), and a similar culture will be unifying factors.

New York: Allied with New England, due to its shared Federalist values and reliance on sea trade. The two countries may merge sometime in the future. Its main rival in the short term will be Pennsylvania. NY's sphere of influence will include northern New Jersey, and possibly Vermont and western Connecticut.

Pennsylvania: Likely to become the dominant power in the northeast. Massive resource deposits (coal, oil, wood, water), a major port city (Philadelphia), and easy access to the American interior allow for rapid industrialization and expansion. It will probably annex Delaware and southern New Jersey in order to secure control of the Delaware Bay. After that, expansion into the Midwest (Ohio at the very least) is a given.

Virginia: As the most populous state in the Union at the time of independence, Virginia is certainly going to be a major power in the short term. Expansion into OTL's Kentucky is likely, and it will most likely clash with Pennsylvania over Ohio. Maryland, fearing Pennsylvania's expansion, will also run to Virginia's side, giving it the port of Baltimore and control over the Chesapeake Bay. However, if it's to remain competitive in the 20th century, Virginia will have to transform its agrarian, slave-based economy into an industrial one. Not an easy task without the pressure of northern abolitionists, but it can be done - Norfolk and Baltimore are major ports, and the coal in West Virginia alone can power every factory in the country.

The Deep South: Shared values will bring the Carolinas and Georgia together into a proto-Confederacy. Alabama will almost certainly fall into this region's sphere of influence, and Tennessee and Mississippi may do so as well (if Virginia and Louisiana don't get there first). This country will have a very difficult time keeping up when the Industrial Revolution arrives, what with its near-total reliance upon slavery and agriculture. By 1900, this region will be little more than a backward vassal of either Virginia or Louisiana.

Louisiana: As farming and, later, industry spread west to the Mississippi River, New Orleans will grow into a major sea port, fueling the rise of Louisiana as a regional power. (By this time, the French will probably have lost their grip on the colony, what with the British blockade of their ports.) It will make an effort to claim dominion over the lower Mississippi valley, which will bring it into conflict with the Carolina-Georgia bloc. The country's progress over the next two hundred years will be a rollercoaster. Power generated by the river could be used for the development of industry, although without coal, Louisiana will fall behind the main industrial powers in this regard. Later, however, the discovery of oil in the Gulf could put this country back on top. But then again, what happens when the oil runs out, or if New Orleans gets Katrina'd? Or if Texas surpasses it in power?

Florida: May remain as a Spanish outpost in the region - in OTL, they only lost it when the Americans kicked them out. If Spain loses it, however, then it may quickly fall under the sway of Louisiana or the Carolina-Georgia bloc. With a longer period of Spanish protection, and without an organized Indian relocation plan, Florida may retain a sizable Native American minority.

The Midwest: Soon after independence, Virginia and Pennsylvania will probably go to war over the Ohio Valley. The war will probably end in a stalemate, with Pennsylvania in control of Ohio and Virginia ruling Kentucky. After that, Pennsylvania will be in conflict with the British for further expansion in the region. Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota will probably become British colonies, while Pennsylvania will hold Ohio and claim most of Indiana. Illinois is a wild card: Fort Dearborn (present-day Chicago) is a key strategic location, and it's very far away from Pennsylvania; the British might wind up in full control of Lake Michigan. These British colonies may wind up becoming independent nations as settlers move in from the East Coast. St. Louis will rise as a major center of trade between the Midwest and the South. Its fate is unknown - any of the major powers (Britain, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Louisiana) may claim it, or it may become the center of an independent state.

The Great Plains: With a fractured America, it will be hard for anybody to claim control over what amounts to the North American equivalent of the Central Asian steppes. The Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas and Platte Rivers will be the main focus of civilization on the plains. Westward migration will be a boon for whoever is occupying Iowa and Nebraska - these areas will probably be the first to become civilized.

Texas: Settlers from the South will probably cause the same problems for Mexico that they did in OTL, and an independent Republic of Texas will most likely result. Unwilling to go to war with Mexico so soon after independence, Texas will most likely be looking north for expansion. Oklahoma, Colorado, and Kansas will be prime targets, especially once people learn that agriculture is possible on the "Great American Desert." In the 20th century, oil and the mineral resources of New Mexico and Colorado will fuel industry in Texas, leading to its rise as a major power that can truly challenge Mexico. It will slowly gobble up land in the west, eventually bringing it into conflict with California. By 2000, Texas will have risen to the status of a world power.

The Mountain West: There's a reason why it's called the Wild West. Rugged and largely unsuited for farming, there won't be much in the way of civilization out here (outside of a few areas, like the Great Salt Lake and the Texas-controlled Front Range). Without a substantial military presence to maintain order, the West will remain wild for a few decades longer than in OTL. Native Americans will become well-entrenched in the region, and may be able to form an independent state. With Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and the western portions of Colorado and New Mexico still under nominal Mexican control, there may be an increased Latino influence in the region. By 2000, I can see California, Texas, and the Pacific Northwest becoming the dominant powers in the West.

California: Two words: eighteen forty-nine. Once the Gold Rush starts, California's rise as a world power is virtually guaranteed. With its abundant mineral resources, lush farmland, and large Pacific seaports, it would take an act of God for this not to happen. Clashes between the settlers and the Mexican government will lead to the independence of the Bear Flag Republic, much like they did in Texas. As Mexico declines, California will be looking to expand into Nevada and Arizona - acts that will bring it into conflict with Texas. There will be conflicts over Asian immigration, but these will slowly fade into the background, much as they did in OTL. By 2000, California will be in the same situation that it is in today: a world-class, multicultural nation that leads the world in science, technology, and entertainment, as well as being the breadbasket of western North America.

The Pacific Northwest: Without US pressure, the whole of the Oregon country will remain under British control. As Britain decolonizes, the region will most likely be granted commonwealth status. California will be a powerful influence on this country.

British North America: Fear of American annexation was what led to the rise of Canada as one nation. Without this, the colonies will remain separate. The Atlantic provinces will at least unite into a single country, or join New England (the two areas have cultural and economic links between them). Quebec will go its own way. Upper Canada, or Ontario or whatever it's called in this TL, will probably have British Michigan as part of its territory (not much reason to separate them), and may form links and/or rivalries with Pennsylvania and the British Midwest. Speaking of which, the British colonies in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Illinois, owing to their similar geography and culture, will probably become one nation, possibly along with Manitoba and parts of the Dakotas. Alberta will most likely include Saskatchewan. Finally, as mentioned above, the Oregon Country - British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and western Montana - will be its own nation, with the Yukon and Alaska as territories.
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  #29  
Old September 21st, 2008, 05:46 PM
Fiver Fiver is offline
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Originally Posted by Snake Featherston View Post
How long after CS fragmentation before some enterprising Shi Huang wannabe comes along and attempts to impose a military unification? It's the same principle with a balkanized CSA as with a balkanized USA.
I definitely agree. Of course, this is the problem with most Alternate Histories. Once the original changes occur they become fixed in stone. Countries that do better than in OTL, continue to do better for the rest of time and vice versa. Additional external forces seldom combine against the rising power or take advantage of a power weakened by the events.

There is a decent chance that a fragmented CSA and/or USA would re-unify, whether by conquest or mutual self-interest. OTOH, the Warring States period lasted a couple hundred years, the Sixteen Kingdoms over a hundred, the Ten Kingdoms over fifty.

And breakway states could also survive as buffer states between larger powers or client states of major powers.

Unification could also come from external sources. The Diadochi struggled against each other from Alexander the Great's death until the last fell to Rome about three hundred years later. The French example in Mexico would likely be expanded and/or imitated by other European powers if North America balkanized.
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  #30  
Old September 21st, 2008, 06:01 PM
Fiver Fiver is offline
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I think Mexico could be more than two nations, theoretically. It's very mountainous, at least, and given that both California and Texas became independent Republics, I'd say there's probably more room for outer states breaking off. Of course... California and Texas broke off because of all the Anglos moving in. The majority-Latino states really had no reason to break off. I'm just saying they might have been able to, had they wanted to.
Actually majority-Latino states did attempt to break off of Mexico in OTL. Yucatan and the Republic of the Rio Grande are examples. And there's always the chance of fragmentation - after independance Central America fragmented in a civil war and has stayed that way in spite of numerous attempts at re-unification.
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  #31  
Old September 22nd, 2008, 07:51 PM
Johnrankins Johnrankins is offline
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Not neccessarily. Confederacy's attempted secession was based on the idea that any state could secede at any time for any reason. And the South was not uniform on a variety of issues (expansion, internal improvements, the international slave trade, etc.) South Carolina almost didn't join the CSA because it maintained the same ban on the international slave trade that the USA did.

So if the Confederacy secedes, it will be naturally prone to fragmentation. Meanwhile, the US will have the CSA's example, which could lead to other sections breaking off.

Perhaps this could lead to Britain deciding that there's a limit to how big a successful country can be and having OTL's Canada becoming several separate countries. (Newfoundland was self-geverning and independant from Canada from 1907 to 1934 in OTL.)

Meanwhile, Mexico is divided into a CSA-backed French Mexico and a USA-backed Juarez government. States around the edges may try to go their own way, much like Yucatan and the Republic of the Rio Grande attempted in 1840, or seek foreign annexation like Yucatan did in 1847.

Of course (referencing the thread title) none of this is likely.
That what I always thought. If the South won the Civil War it would soon degenerate to such a point that Middle Ages Europe would look like a haven for peace and stability. That is until someone declared himself dictator. Someone like Jefferson Davis would do that without a moments thought.
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  #32  
Old September 23rd, 2008, 05:54 AM
DuQuense DuQuense is offline
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For a balkanized America, the most obvious POD would probably be the failure of the Constitutional Convention. Maybe in this TL, Thomas Jefferson could be at the convention (he was in France during the event), and could push for a weaker federal government, leading to gridlock at the convention and a failure to amend the Articles of Confederation. Over the next ten years, disputes between the states slowly pull the young USA apart, until by 1800, the only thing left of the federal government is a rump state occupying a small area.
How about if the Anti Federalists Won --1791 rolls around with only 7~8 States having ratified the new Constitution.
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  #33  
Old September 23rd, 2008, 10:31 AM
William Blake William Blake is offline
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Federated or independent, I don't think the political structure of the ex-colonies will effect the expansion of the 'rugged individualists' that crossed the Appalachians into the Mississippi plain. The big question would be what happens to Louisiana (I don't think the French would have been able to hold it in the long run, so it may just fade away under the settlers feet),
I think the French might hold it.
It just depends on an early change of policy. Let the French see Louisiana
more like a place to inject french population, let the monarchy be taken
by the idea of a new world empire, and let their energy (that would go
OTL into Louis XV European wars) be employed in the growth of this empire.
Preferably, let (decades after the start of the forced colonization ) the growing (and increasingly troublesome) intellectual class be deported to the "Neuf France" together with a large portion of the growing (and increasingly troublesome) bourgeoisie class.




Quote:
and the northern territories of Mexico (more problematic, but the individual states' armies might be more boisterous and unruly than a combined military force, leading to skirmish wars over the long term. Eventually an alliance to 'contain the Mexican problem').
Let early spanish exporers find what would be the OTL California gold,
so that northern Mexico is more developed, and butterfly in some administrative geniuses in charge of Mexico at the critical periods, so that
Mexico gets ahead of southern American states.
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  #34  
Old September 23rd, 2008, 07:24 PM
AirshipArmada AirshipArmada is offline
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A failed congress in 1983 makes a good POD but most ATLs ignore money. America was going through major financial turmoil at the time. The Federal gov had a debt of $11 million and the state's total debt was $65 million. Massachusetts imposed taxes to pay the debt and Shays Rebellion resulted. In NH the legislature was taken over by advocates of paper money and had to be forcibly ejected by the militia. Many states printed their own money which was worthless, so then they had to pass laws making it a crime to not accept the paper money as payment. Things were a mess. Virginia, New York, and much of New England faced particularly massive debt.

The federal gov could have failed and many of the debts wiped out. The fall out would be that foreign governments would be hesitant to make loans to American states, slowing America's growth. States like Rhode Island were an exception and took care of their debt very quickly, so some states would be on good financial footing.

Virginia was in a financial mess, but it was also the richest and most powerful state so it would remain very strong. It had designs on Ohio since before the French and Indian War, so Virginia would likely annex that region. Other southern states would live in Virginia's shadow, but retain their independent sovereignty.

My guess that consolidation would happen first in the North, with the finances being a strong determinant of who has the most power.

There would not be a general feeling of Manifest Destiny, nor unified acts to encourage westward expansion, so the "United States" would possibly stay East of the Mississippi. The butterflies are massive.

I'm shooting from the hip here but I'll add: Texas stays a part of Mexico (which gets gold from California). There is no "United States" so wars are small and local. American culture and people, however, do spread West but at a much slower rate than OTL. European powers will meddle in American affairs trying to play one region against another.

Any one have good TLs to recommend reading on this?
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  #35  
Old September 24th, 2008, 12:14 AM
demonkangaroo demonkangaroo is offline
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This is how I think a failed Continental Congress would have turned out. (Yes, that is a Native American country in Northern Alabama, and Mississippi.)
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  #36  
Old September 24th, 2008, 08:21 AM
Analytical Engine Analytical Engine is offline
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This is how I think a failed Continental Congress would have turned out. (Yes, that is a Native American country in Northern Alabama, and Mississippi.)
The Mosquito Coast is runing in the wrong direction...

It should be north-south, not east-west...
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  #37  
Old September 24th, 2008, 08:06 PM
demonkangaroo demonkangaroo is offline
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Originally Posted by Analytical Engine View Post
The Mosquito Coast is runing in the wrong direction...

It should be north-south, not east-west...
Ooops....I'm glad I didn't turn it into the map thread then!
[Edit:I fixed the map]
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Last edited by demonkangaroo; September 24th, 2008 at 08:13 PM..
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  #38  
Old September 25th, 2008, 03:33 AM
AirshipArmada AirshipArmada is offline
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After the ARW Virginia was rich, powerful, and had a good military.

Maybe Virginia could end up like this:


That's OTL Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, and part of Michigan.
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  #39  
Old September 25th, 2008, 05:44 AM
Chris S Chris S is offline
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That sounds like quite a good idea for a TL. Too often the failed-constitutional-convention idea seems to assume that America will stay forever separated, ignoring the fact that the shared language, heritage and interests might well re-spark unionism when 19th century nationalism comes along.
But the 19th century national unifications of Germany and Italy were respectively lead by Prussia and Piedmont weren't they? Would something similar need to happen here? (Hmm....maybe Virginia....).

And the (re)-unification could still be incomplete as with Germany depending on how it came about (if the reunification happened along the Prussian/Piedmontese lines, moreso the Prussian line).
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  #40  
Old September 25th, 2008, 05:56 AM
NomadicSky NomadicSky is offline
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Originally Posted by demonkangaroo View Post
This is how I think a failed Continental Congress would have turned out. (Yes, that is a Native American country in Northern Alabama, and Mississippi.)
Well what's that red one in Western "NY"?
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