See: List of Pennsylvania counties
Pennsylvania's nickname "The Keystone State" is quite apt, as the state forms a geographic bridge both between the Northeastern states and the Southern states, and between the Atlantic seaboard and the Midwest. It is bordered on the north and northeast by New York, on the east, across the Delaware River by New Jersey, on the south by Delaware, Maryland, and West Virginia, on the west by Ohio, and on the northwest by Lake Erie. The Delaware, Susquehanna, Monongahela, Allegheny, and Ohio Rivers are the major rivers of the state. The capital is Harrisburg.
Pennsylvania is 180 miles north to south and 310 miles east to west. The total land area is 44,817 square miles (119,283 km²), 739,200 acres (1,239 square miles)
of which are bodies of water. It is the 33rd largest state in the United States. The highest point of 3,213 feet above sea level is at Mt. Davis. The lowest point is 0 feet above sea level on the Delaware River. Pennsylvania is in the Eastern time zone.
Pennsylvania is bisected diagonally by ridges of the Appalachian Mountain chain from southwest to northeast. To the northwest of the folded mountains is the Allegheny Plateau, which continues into southwestern and south central New York. This plateau is so dissected by valleys that it also seems mountainous. The Plateau is underlain by sedimentary rocks of Mississippian and Pennsylvanian age, which bear abundant fossils, as well as natural gas and petroleum. In 1859 near Titusville Edwin L. Drake drilled the first oil well into these sediments, . Similar rock layers also contain coal to the south and east of the oil and gas deposits. In the metamorphic (folded) belt of anthracite (hard coal) is mined near Wilkes-Barre and Hazelton. These fossil fuels have been an important resource to Pennsylvania. Timber and dairy farming are also sources of livelihood for midstate and western Pennsylvania. Along the shore of Lake Erie in the far northwest are orchards and vinyards.
Pennsylvania's 1999 total gross state product was $383 billion, placing it 6th in the nation and its 2000 Per Capita Personal Income was $29,539, 18th in the nation. Its agricultural outputs are dairy products, poultry, cattle, nursery stock, mushrooms, hogs, and hay. Its industrial outputs are food processing, chemical products, machinery, electric equipment, and tourism.
Small companies, such as the Pennsylvania Dutch Candies company, also exist in Pennsylvania.
As of 2000, the population was 12,281,054. When Pennsylvania became a state in 1787, it had a population of about 300,000.
Important cities and towns