Q132: Name one state that borders Canada.

 a. Maine
 b. Washington
 c. New York
 d. All of the above

Question Background Information

The territory that eventually became the United States was far from the only British colony in the New World. To the north were other British territories, including former French lands, ceded to the British at the end of the Seven Years War (called the French and Indian War in America). Despite the hopes of Americans, the people of these territories chose to remain loyal to the British government in Canada; indeed, many former Americans who remained loyal to the British crown moved there.

These territories were eventually and gradually granted self-government by the British government as the nation of Canada (though Canada remains a part of the British Commonwealth, with the monarch as ceremonial head of state). Like with Great Britain itself, relations between the United States and Canada have long been very friendly, after a bumpy 19th century. America and Canada share what is often considered the longest militarily undefended border in the world, are major trading partners, and generally cooperate on defense measures such as NATO. (Canada and the United States, along with Great Britain and other former British colonies in Australia and New Zealand, also make up the Five Eyes intelligence sharing network.) This should not be surprising: the two nations are politically quite similar – both constitutional and federal countries, with a common-law tradition derived from a shared history of British settlement. 

Among the states bordering Canada in the northeast are the upper New England states of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont, as well as New York. The border that the states of Washington, Idaho, and Montana share with Canada was once potentially a site of conflict with Great Britain, before a peaceful resolution helped lay the groundwork for the friendship between the United States and Great Britain. That friendship has carried over to our strong relationship with Canada once it too became independent of Great Britain.

Additional Content

Discussion Prompts

The border between the United States and Canada is one of the longest land borders in the world. While there was once tension over its contours, which almost led to renewed war with Great Britain in the mid 19th century, relations between Canada and the United States have long been friendly.

Prompt 1

The border between Canada and the United States is one of the longest in the world. Can you name one state that borders Canada today? There are 13 states along the border. How many can you name?

Prompt 2

Not only is the U.S.-Canadian border the longest land border in the world, it is also minimally defended, with law enforcement rather than military forces posted there. Why do you think that the two nations are willing to leave the border basically undefended? What does this indicate about the political relationship of the two? How do you think current and past events have shaped this relationship? Use specific examples to support your answer.