The capitalization of says is an easy rule to remember. The names of each state represent details places and also must be capitalized. However, there space a few other rules to be aware of as soon as it involves writing the names of states.

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A map that the United claims

Capitalization Rules for States

When deciding whether the first letter in a state need to be uppercase or lowercase, save these capitalization rule in mind.

Specific Places

Because state name represent specific places, they are always capitalized. If they room paired through a specific city or town, the very first letter of the city’s surname will additionally be capitalized. A comma must come in between a city and also state to properly punctuate it.

For example:

Chicago, IllinoisFort Lauderdale, FloridaNew York, new YorkLos Angeles, CaliforniaWaco, Texas


While state names are often shortened come their 2 letter abbreviation as soon as addressing an envelope or writing an within address, a state name used in formal writing should always be composed out completely. This has in news articles, short stories and an individual essays.

For example, the 2 letter abbreviation for brand-new Jersey is NJ. However, it is hardly ever seen in creating in that kind except for mailing purposes. The rules are much more relaxed in casual writing, choose social media, but it is always much better to err on the side of formality as soon as in doubt.


Some state names have actually a direction attached to them, including:

North DakotaSouth DakotaNorth CarolinaSouth CarolinaWest Virginia

In general, cardinal directions such together north, south, east and also west are not capitalized. However, because the direction is component of the state name in some state, together as south Dakota, the direction must be capitalized. That"s since they end up being a ideal noun.

Capitalizing the word "States"

When using the word "states" or "the States" in writing, the capitalization of claims will count on the meaning and plan usage.

If the writer is introduce to the united States and calling it just the States, then states needs to be capitalized. If states is being referred to in a general manner, such as “There space two senators for each state,” climate the word claims would remain lower case.

When introduce to the physics location, both the associated Press (AP) Stylebook and also the Chicago hands-on of layout indicate that the word "state" is not capitalized in instances like "the state of California" and also "the state of Missouri." words "state" would be capitalized, however, when referring to the governmental body. Because that example, "The State of brand-new York filed to dismiss the motion."

The State of Affairs

When words "state" is supplied in a more general sense, and not introduce to the says within the United claims in particular, it adheres to the very same capitalization rules together all other common nouns. Examples would include when girlfriend are pointing out the deep state or talking around a state the consciousness. That is just capitalized if it is the first word in a sentence or the is formalized together a ideal noun.

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Otherwise, when discussing the claims in the United says of America, monitor the rules and guidelines laid out over and you"ll be fine on her way.