Geographic centers of the United States

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This is a list of geographic centers of each U.S. state. Note that the geographic center of the entire U.S. is northeast of Belle Fourche in Butte County, South Dakota 44°58′N 103°46′W / 44.967°N 103.767°W / 44.967; -103.767, while that of the contiguous 48 is near Lebanon in Smith County, Kansas 39°50′N 98°35′W / 39.833°N 98.583°W / 39.833; -98.583 (Geographic Center of the Contiguous United States). The geographic center of North America lies near Rugby, North Dakota 48°22′2″N 99°59′46″W / 48.36722°N 99.99611°W / 48.36722; -99.99611, though this designation has no official status.

Centers of the states and Washington, DC[edit]

Geographic centers of the states of the United States and Washington, DC.
State County Location Coordinates
Alabama Chilton County 12 mi (19 km) south-west of Clanton 32°50′5″N 86°38′0″W / 32.83472°N 86.63333°W / 32.83472; -86.63333 (Center of Alabama)
Alaska Yukon–Koyukuk Census Area
(Unorganized Borough)
60 mi (97 km) northwest of Denali 64°43′54″N 152°28′12″W / 64.73167°N 152.47000°W / 64.73167; -152.47000 (Center of Alaska)
Arizona Yavapai County 55 mi (89 km) east-southeast of Prescott
Arkansas Pulaski County 12 mi (19 km) northwest of Little Rock
California Madera County 38 mi (61 km) east of Madera, near North Fork, northwest of Fresno 37°9′58″N 119°26′58″W / 37.16611°N 119.44944°W / 37.16611; -119.44944 (Center of California)
Colorado Park County 40 mi (64 km) west of Colorado Springs, southwest of Castle Rock 39°00′00″N 105°32′50″W / 39.00000°N 105.54722°W / 39.00000; -105.54722 (State of Colorado)
Connecticut Hartford County in East Berlin
Delaware Kent County 11 mi (18 km) southwest of Dover 38°58′48″N 75°30′42″W / 38.98000°N 75.51167°W / 38.98000; -75.51167 (approximate center of Delaware)
District of Columbia Near 4th and L Streets, Northwest 38°54′15″N 77°00′58″W / 38.90417°N 77.01611°W / 38.90417; -77.01611 (approximate center of District of Columbia)
Florida Hernando County 12 mi (19 km) north-northwest of Brooksville 28°40′53″N 82°27′36″W / 28.68139°N 82.46000°W / 28.68139; -82.46000 (approximate center of Florida)
Georgia Twiggs County 18 mi (29 km) southeast of Macon 32°39′43.6″N 83°26′17.9″W / 32.662111°N 83.438306°W / 32.662111; -83.438306 (approximate center of Georgia)
Hawaii Maui County off-shore southwest of Molokai and west of Lanai
Idaho Custer County on the Yankee Fork River, southwest of Challis
Illinois Sangamon County 1.5 mi (2.4 km) southeast of Rochester 39°44′21.5″N 89°30′13.1″W / 39.739306°N 89.503639°W / 39.739306; -89.503639 (approximate center of Illinois)
Indiana Hendricks County 2 mi (3.2 km) west of Avon 39°45′57.7″N 86°26′28.6″W / 39.766028°N 86.441278°W / 39.766028; -86.441278 (approximate center of Indiana)
Iowa Story County 5 mi (8.0 km) northeast of Ames
Kansas Barton County 15 mi (24 km) northeast of Great Bend
Kentucky Marion County 3 mi (4.8 km) north-northwest of Lebanon
Louisiana Avoyelles Parish 3 mi (4.8 km) southeast of Marksville
Maine Piscataquis County 18 mi (29 km) north of Dover-Foxcroft
Maryland Prince George's County 4.5 mi (7.2 km) northwest of Davidsonville
Massachusetts Worcester County 12 mi (19 km) northwest of Worcester, in Rutland 42°22′37.62″N 71°55′30.93″W / 42.3771167°N 71.9252583°W / 42.3771167; -71.9252583 (Center of Massachusetts)
Michigan Wexford County 5 mi (8.0 km) north-northwest of Cadillac
Minnesota Crow Wing County 10 mi (16 km) southwest of Brainerd
Mississippi Leake County 9 mi (14 km) west-northwest of Carthage
Missouri Miller County 20 mi (32 km) southwest of Jefferson City
Montana Fergus County 11 mi (18 km) west of Lewistown
Nebraska Custer County 10 mi (16 km) northwest of Broken Bow 41°31′30″N 99°51′42″W / 41.52500°N 99.86167°W / 41.52500; -99.86167 (approximate center of Nebraska)
Nevada Lander County 26 mi (42 km) southeast of Austin
New Hampshire Belknap County 3 mi (4.8 km) east of Ashland
New Jersey Ocean County 5 mi (8.0 km) southeast of Trenton 40°08′23.1″N 74°22′34.5″W / 40.139750°N 74.376250°W / 40.139750; -74.376250 (Center of New Jersey)
New Mexico Torrance County 12 mi (19 km) south-southwest of Willard
New York Madison County 26 mi (42 km) southwest of Utica, near Syracuse
North Carolina Chatham County 10 mi (16 km) northwest of Sanford
North Dakota Sheridan County 5 mi (8.0 km) southwest of McClusky
Ohio Delaware County 25 mi (40 km) north-northeast of Columbus
Oklahoma Oklahoma County 8 mi (13 km) north of Oklahoma City
Oregon Crook County 25 mi (40 km) south-southeast of Prineville
Pennsylvania Centre County 2.5 mi (4.0 km) southwest of Bellefonte, in State College
Rhode Island Kent County 1-mile (1.6 km) south-southwest of Crompton 41°40′18″N 71°34′36″W / 41.67167°N 71.57667°W / 41.67167; -71.57667 (Center of Rhode Island)
South Carolina Richland County 13 mi (21 km) southeast of Columbia
South Dakota Hughes County 8 mi (13 km) northeast of Pierre
Tennessee Rutherford County 5 mi (8.0 km) northeast of Murfreesboro
Texas McCulloch County 15 mi (24 km) northeast of Brady 31°23′29.52″N 99°10′14.34″W / 31.3915333°N 99.1706500°W / 31.3915333; -99.1706500 (Center of Texas)
Utah Sanpete County 3 mi (4.8 km) north of Manti
Vermont Washington County 3 mi (4.8 km) east of Roxbury
Virginia Buckingham County 5 mi (8.0 km) southwest of Buckingham
Washington Chelan County 10 mi (16 km) west-southwest of Wenatchee
West Virginia Braxton County 4 mi (6.4 km) east of Sutton
Wisconsin Wood County 9 mi (14 km) southeast of Marshfield 44°26′16.00″N 90°07′48.67″W / 44.4377778°N 90.1301861°W / 44.4377778; -90.1301861 (Center of Wisconsin)
Wyoming Fremont County 58 mi (93 km) east-northeast of Lander

Updated list of geographic centers[edit]

The list above has been only slightly modified since it was first produced by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in the early 1920s.[1] At that time, the center for a state was found by suspending a cardboard cutout of the state by a string, and then drawing a vertical line from the suspension point. After rotating the cutout 90 degrees and drawing another vertical line from the new suspension point, the intersection of the two vertical lines was used as the geographic center.[2] The result is dependent upon the type of projection used. Although there have been different definitions offered for the geographic center, an intuitive one, and one used by the USGS, is "the center of gravity of the surface, or that point on which the surface of the area would balance if it were a plane of uniform thickness."[3] An updated list of geographic centers using this definition (which is equivalent to the state's centroid) is given below. It was derived by minimizing the sum of squared great circle distances from all points of land in a state (including islands, but not coastal waters, following the earlier practice of the USGS).[4]

The geographic center of the contiguous United States, determined in this way, is at (39.8355 N, 99.0909 W); this is 5.3 miles from Agra, Kansas, 5.5 miles from Kensington, Kansas, and 29.5 great circle miles west of the longstanding designated center of Lebanon, Kansas.

Updated geographic centers of the states of the United States and Washington, DC
State Location Coordinates
Alabama 12.1 mi (19.5 km) southwest of Clanton 32°46′42″N 86°55′44″W / 32.7784°N 86.9290°W / 32.7784; -86.9290 (Center of Alabama)
Alaska 77.1 mi (124.1 km) northwest of Denali 64°03′40″N 152°13′51″W / 64.0610°N 152.2307°W / 64.0610; -152.2307 (Center of Alaska)
Arizona 49.7 mi (80.0 km) east-southeast of Prescott 34°16′26″N 111°39′30″W / 34.2740°N 111.6582°W / 34.2740; -111.6582 (Center of Arizona)
Arkansas 14.2 mi (22.9 km) northwest of Little Rock 34°53′38″N 92°26′34″W / 34.8938°N 92.4429°W / 34.8938; -92.4429 (Center of Arkansas)
California 37.4 mi (60.2 km) northeast of Madera, 37°11′57″N 119°27′02″W / 37.1992°N 119.4505°W / 37.1992; -119.4505 (Center of California)
Colorado 29.1 mi (46.8 km) northwest of Pikes Peak, 38°59′52″N 105°32′58″W / 38.9979°N 105.5495°W / 38.9979; -105.5495 (State of Colorado)
Connecticut 1.1 mi (1.8 km) east of East Berlin 41°37′19″N 72°43′38″W / 41.6220°N 72.7272°W / 41.6220; -72.7272 (Center of Connecticut)
Delaware 11.7 mi (18.8 km) south of Dover 38°59′22″N 75°30′18″W / 38.9895°N 75.5051°W / 38.9895; -75.5051 (approximate center of Delaware)
District of Columbia Near 3rd and P Streets, Northwest 38°54′36″N 77°00′53″W / 38.9101°N 77.0147°W / 38.9101; -77.0147 (approximate center of District of Columbia)
Florida 5.8 mi (9.3 km) northwest of Brooksville 28°37′42″N 82°26′33″W / 28.6282°N 82.4426°W / 28.6282; -82.4426 (approximate center of Florida)
Georgia 17.7 mi (28.5 km) southeast of Macon 32°38′39″N 83°26′30″W / 32.64405°N 83.4418°W / 32.64405; -83.4418 (approximate center of Georgia)
Hawaii 27.7 mi (44.6 km) off-shore south of Wailea-Makena 20°17′42″N 156°22′19″W / 20.2951°N 156.3720°W / 20.2951; -156.3720 (Center of Hawaii)
Idaho 21.4 mi (34.4 km) west-southwest of Challis 44°21′14″N 114°36′31″W / 44.3538°N 114.6086°W / 44.3538; -114.6086 (Center of Idaho)
Illinois 28.8 mi (46.3 km) northeast of Springfield 40°02′28″N 89°11′47″W / 40.0411°N 89.1965°W / 40.0411; -89.1965 (approximate center of Illinois)
Indiana 10.8 mi (17.4 km) northwest of Indianapolis 39°53′38″N 86°16′54″W / 39.8938°N 86.2818°W / 39.8938; -86.2818 (approximate center of Indiana)
Iowa 7 mi (11 km) northeast of Ames 42°04′31″N 93°29′45″W / 42.0753°N 93.4959°W / 42.0753; -93.4959 (Center of Iowa)
Kansas 22.6 mi (36.4 km) northeast of Great Bend 38°29′42″N 98°22′48″W / 38.4949°N 98.3801°W / 38.4949; -98.3801 (Center of Kansas)
Kentucky 3.4 mi (5.5 km) southwest of Lebanon 37°32′10″N 85°18′08″W / 37.5360°N 85.3021°W / 37.5360; -85.3021 (Center of Kentucky)
Louisiana 5.8 mi (9.3 km) southeast of Marksville 31°04′08″N 91°59′43″W / 31.0689°N 91.9952°W / 31.0689; -91.9952 (Center of Louisiana)
Maine 12.6 mi (20.3 km) northwest of Dover-Foxcroft 45°22′13″N 69°14′38″W / 45.3702°N 69.2438°W / 45.3702; -69.2438 (Center of Maine)
Maryland 12.6 mi (20.3 km) northwest of Davidsonville 39°03′18″N 76°47′27″W / 39.0550°N 76.7909°W / 39.0550; -76.7909 (Center of Maryland)
Massachusetts Irving St. and Wellington St., Worcester 42°15′35″N 71°48′30″W / 42.2596°N 71.8083°W / 42.2596; -71.8083 (Center of Massachusetts)
Michigan 7.7 mi (12.4 km) west of Cadillac 44°20′46″N 85°24′41″W / 44.3461°N 85.4114°W / 44.3461; -85.4114 (Center of Michigan)
Minnesota 10 mi (16 km) southwest of Brainerd 46°16′52″N 94°18′17″W / 46.2810°N 94.3046°W / 46.2810; -94.3046 (Center of Minnesota)
Mississippi 9 mi (14 km) west-northwest of Carthage 32°44′06″N 89°40′05″W / 32.7351°N 89.6680°W / 32.7351; -89.6680 (Center of Missouri)
Missouri 21 mi (34 km) southwest of Jefferson City 38°21′24″N 92°27′26″W / 38.3568°N 92.4571°W / 38.3568; -92.4571 (Center of Alabama)
Montana 10.1 mi (16.3 km) west of Lewistown 47°03′10″N 109°38′42″W / 47.0527°N 109.6450°W / 47.0527; -109.6450 (Center of Montana)
Nebraska 12.4 mi (20.0 km) northwest of Broken Bow 41°32′21″N 99°47′48″W / 41.5392°N 99.7968°W / 41.5392; -99.7968 (Center of Nebraska)
Nevada 26 mi (42 km) southeast of Austin 39°19′50″N 116°37′36″W / 39.3306°N 116.6268°W / 39.3306; -116.6268 (Center of Nevada)
New Hampshire 2.6 mi (4.2 km) east of Ashland 43°40′50″N 71°34′54″W / 43.6805°N 71.5818°W / 43.6805; -71.5818 (Center of New Hampshire)
New Jersey 4.3 mi (6.9 km) southeast of Trenton 40°11′27″N 74°40′24″W / 40.1907°N 74.6733°W / 40.1907; -74.6733 (Center of New Jersey)
New Mexico 13.8 mi (22.2 km) south-southwest of Willard 34°24′24″N 106°06′46″W / 34.4066°N 106.1128°W / 34.4066; -106.1128 (Center of New Mexico)
New York 11.5 mi (18.5 km) south-southeast of Oneida 42°57′15″N 75°31′34″W / 42.9543°N 75.5262°W / 42.9543; -75.5262 (Center of New York)
North Carolina 12.7 mi (20.4 km) northwest of Sanford 35°33′28″N 79°23′08″W / 35.5579°N 79.3856°W / 35.5579; -79.3856 (Center of North Carolina)
North Dakota 2.7 mi (4.3 km) southwest of McClusky 47°27′00″N 100°28′03″W / 47.4499°N 100.4674°W / 47.4499; -100.4674 (Center of North Dakota)
Ohio 24.9 mi (40.1 km) north-northeast of Columbus 40°17′11″N 82°47′38″W / 40.2863°N 82.7938°W / 40.2863; -82.7938 (Center of Ohio)
Oklahoma 4.4 mi (7.1 km) south of Edmond 35°35′28″N 97°29′39″W / 35.5910°N 97.4943°W / 35.5910; -97.4943 (Center of Oklahoma)
Oregon 29.1 mi (46.8 km) southeast of Prineville 43°56′01″N 120°33′42″W / 43.9336°N 120.5617°W / 43.9336; -120.5617 (Center of Oregon)
Pennsylvania 2.6 mi (4.2 km) southwest of Bellefonte, in State College 40°52′43″N 77°47′55″W / 40.8786°N 77.7985°W / 40.8786; -77.7985 (Center of Pennsylvania)
Rhode Island 2.4-mile (3.9 km) west of Crompton 41°40′34″N 71°33′22″W / 41.6762°N 71.5562°W / 41.6762; -71.5562 (Center of Rhode Island)
South Carolina 9.7 mi (15.6 km) southeast of Columbia 33°55′01″N 80°53′45″W / 33.9169°N 80.8957°W / 33.9169; -80.8957 (Center of South Carolina)
South Dakota 7.9 mi (12.7 km) northeast of Pierre 44°26′41″N 100°13′42″W / 44.4446°N 100.2282°W / 44.4446; -100.2282 (Center of South Dakota)
Tennessee 2.5 mi (4.0 km) northeast of Murfreesboro 35°51′38″N 86°21′01″W / 35.8605°N 86.3504°W / 35.8605; -86.3504 (Center of Tennessee)
Texas 23.7 mi (38.1 km) north of Brady 31°28′44″N 99°19′43″W / 31.4789°N 99.3287°W / 31.4789; -99.3287 (Center of Texas)
Utah 3.1 mi (5.0 km) northwest of Manti 39°18′21″N 111°40′07″W / 39.3057°N 111.6685°W / 39.3057; -111.6685 (Center of Utah)
Vermont 3.7 mi (6.0 km) southeast of Roxbury 44°04′08″N 72°39′59″W / 44.0688°N 72.6663°W / 44.0688; -72.6663 (Center of Vermont)
Virginia 16.6 mi (26.7 km) west of Buckingham 37°31′22″N 78°51′11″W / 37.5229°N 78.8531°W / 37.5229; -78.8531 (Center of Virginia)
Washington 7 mi (11 km) west-southwest of Wenatchee 47°22′56″N 120°27′02″W / 47.3822°N 120.4505°W / 47.3822; -120.4505 (Center of Washington)
West Virginia 4.9 mi (7.9 km) east-southeast of Sutton 38°38′27″N 80°37′23″W / 38.6409°N 80.6230°W / 38.6409; -80.6230 (Center of West Virginia)
Wisconsin 9.3 mi (15.0 km) east-southeast of Marshfield 44°37′27″N 89°59′39″W / 44.6243°N 89.9941°W / 44.6243; -89.9941 (Center of Wisconsin)
Wyoming 60.6 mi (97.5 km) east-northeast of Lander 42°59′45″N 107°33′10″W / 42.9959°N 107.5527°W / 42.9959; -107.5527 (Center of Wyoming)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Douglas, E.M. 1923. Boundaries, Areas, Geographic Centers, and Altitudes of the United States and Several States. Bulletin 689. U.S. Geological Survey, Washington, DC.
  2. ^ Adams, Oscar, S. 1932. Geographical Centers. The Military Engineer 24, 138: 586-587.
  3. ^ Van Zandt, Franklin. 1966. Boundaries of the United States and the Several States. Bulletin 1212. U.S. Geological Survey, Washington, DC.
  4. ^ Rogerson, P. 2015. A New Method for Finding Geographic Centers, with Application to the U.S. States. The Professional Geographer. Published online Aug 15, 2015; DOI:10.1080/00330124.2015.1062707 http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00330124.2015.1062707#.Vd30QflVhBc Retrieved 2015-08-26

References[edit]