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The continent's first elected legislative assembly, Virginia's House of Burgesses created in 1619, the Mayflower Compact, signed by the Pilgrims before disembarking, and the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, established precedents for the pattern of representative self-government and constitutionalism that would develop throughout the American colonies.Most settlers in every colony were small farmers, but other industries developed within a few decades as varied as the settlements. Extraction industries grew up in furs, fishing and lumber.The war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power.The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties.The end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The phrase "United States" was originally plural, a description of a collection of independent states—e.g., "the United States are"—including in the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, ratified in 1865.
For the landmass comprising North, Central and South America, see Americas. C., and the largest city by population is New York City.Manufacturers produced rum and ships, and by the late colonial period Americans were producing one-seventh of the world's iron supply.Cities eventually dotted the coast to support local economies and serve as trade hubs.English colonists were supplemented by waves of Scotch-Irish and other groups.
As coastal land grew more expensive, freed indentured servants pushed further west.
The United States is a highly developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for approximately a quarter of global GDP. Joseph Reed, Moylan expressed his wish to carry the "full and ample powers of the United States of America" to Spain to assist in the revolutionary war effort. The singular form is now standard; the plural form is retained in the idiom "these United States". S." refer to the country adjectivally ("American values", "U. Over time, indigenous cultures in North America grew increasingly complex, and some, such as the pre-Columbian Mississippian culture in the southeast, developed advanced agriculture, grand architecture, and state-level societies.