Portal:Hawaii/Intro

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With a unique culture and language, Hawaii became the 50th state of the United States on August 21, 1959. It is located in the North Pacific Ocean, 2,300 miles (3,700 km) from the mainland, at 21°18′41″N 157°47′47″W / 21.31139°N 157.79639°W / 21.31139; -157.79639.

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The Hawaiian Archipelago comprises eight islands and atolls extending across a distance of 1,500 miles (2,400 km). Of these, eight are considered "main islands" and are located at the southeastern end of the archipelago. These islands are: from (northwest to southeast) Niʻihau, Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, Kahoʻolawe, Maui, and Hawaiʻi. The latter is by far the largest, called the "Big Island" or "Big Isle". In the 19th Century, they were known as the Sandwich Islands.