The Most Patriotic States For 2020

Kathy Morris
by Kathy Morris
Rankings - 3 weeks ago

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As we approach another American holiday, we celebrate the things that make America our home.

While, these celebrations take many forms, for many across the country, they are a display of patriotism and love.

Of course, patriotism extends beyond civic holidays and is more than fireworks and barbecue. It can take many forms, from voting in elections, to buying American made products. Yet, some states may show there patriotism a bit more than others.

We set out to find the states where patriotism is more than a flag- it’s a way of life.

The Most Patriotic States

  1. Virginia
  2. Florida
  3. Maryland
  4. Maine
  5. Alaska
  6. South Carolina
  7. Washington
  8. Massachusetts
  9. Ohio
  10. Pennsylvania

These are the 10 states that raise their flags just a little higher. Keep reading to see how we found out these states bleed red, white, and blue or hop to the bottom to see where your state landed.

How We Determined The Most Patriotic States

Patriotism is a complex term to define. It is both internal and physically displayed. Some enlist in the military as an act of patriotism, while others give back to their community in other ways.

We looked at four factors to rank each state, 1-to-50:

  • Military bases and military institutions
  • Percent of residents who are veterans
  • Percent of voting age residents who voted
  • National and historic landmarks

First, we used the most recent US Census data to determine the percent of adult residents who have served in the armed forces. The higher, the most patriotic. Similarly, we then looked at the amount of military bases and institutions.

Military bases and institutions become part of the community, both in civilian jobs and economic impact.

However, military service or working on a base isn’t the only way to exercise your patriotism. We next used data from the Census to find the percent of adults who exercise their cardinal right of citizenship– voting.

Finally, we looked at the number of national and historic landmarks each state has to measure: 1) The historic national impact a state had has and 2) The current access residents have in their own state to visit these locations ad learn about their history.

Keep reading to see the top 10 highlights and where all 50 states stacked up. Important to note, we have three states tied in eighth place– each received the same average ranking.

1. Virginia

virginiaVoting Percent: 0.67
National Historic Landmarks: 121
Veterans: 0.08

Virginia was the first permanent US colony and is bursting with patriotism. All that history can be seen and soaked in at 121 national historic landmarks. Of course, if that’s not enough evidence for you– just ask the 8% of veteran residents who call the “Old Dominion” state home.

2. Florida

florida
Voting Percent: 0.66
National Historic Landmarks: 46
Veterans: 0.07

Florida is the second most patriotic state in the nation. 66% of Floridians voted in the 2016 election- perhaps motivated to do their civic duty by their status as a swing state. The sunshine state is also home to many veterans who served their country.

3. Maryland

maryland
Voting Percent: 0.67
National Historic Landmarks: 75
Veterans: 0.06

What makes Maryland so patriotic? The state is swimming with Navy and other military institutions. Toss in the historic events that took place there and you have the state is positively dripping red, white, and blue.

4. Maine

maine
Voting Percent: 0.73
National Historic Landmarks: 44
Veterans: 0.08

Maine residents take their civic duty seriously. 73% voted in the 2016 election– more than any other state except Minnesota. If taking part in democracy isn’t patriotic, I don’t know what is.

5. Alaska

alaska
Voting Percent: 0.62
National Historic Landmarks: 50
Veterans: 0.09

Almost 1-in-10 Alaskans of age have served their country. More Alaskans have served in the military than any other state.

6. South Carolina

south carolina
Voting Percent: 0.57
National Historic Landmarks: 76
Veterans: 0.07

South Carolina has a high number of historic sights, veterans, and military institutions compared to the rest of the country– making it the 6th most patriotic state. The only thing keeping South Carolina from ranking higher? A lack of voter turn out. Only 57% of residents bothered to vote in the 2016 election.

7. Washington

washingtonVoting Percent: 0.66
National Historic Landmarks: 24
Veterans: 0.07

At #7, we have the state of Washington. Washington is the only state on the west coast to make the list. Why makes Washington so patriotic? Not only did an impressive 66% of citizens vote in 2016, but 7% are veterans.

8. Massachusetts

massachusetts
Voting Percent: 0.68
National Historic Landmarks: 189
Veterans: 0.05

Massachusetts is brimming with the history of America. From the Boston Tea Party to the Paul Revere’s ride, this is the place where it all went down. And there are 189 national historic landmarks to prove it. In modern day, citizens show their patriotism at the ballot box.

8. Ohio

ohio
Voting Percent: 0.64
National Historic Landmarks: 76
Veterans: 0.06

Ohio may be in the Midwest and founded later than east coast states, but the state still has an appreciation for historical events. Ohio maintains and cares for 76 national historic landmarks.

8. Pennsylvania

pennsylvania
Voting Percent: 0.64
National Historic Landmarks: 169
Veterans: 0.06

64% of Pennsylvanians voted in the 2016 and a respectable 6% have served their country. Of course, the Keystone state’s historical significance to the founding of the country cannot be overlooked in their three-way-tie for 8th place.

There are lots of ways to be patriotic

If your state didn’t make the top 10, that is okay! You can still be patriotic, even if your state didn’t score highly in some areas. While the ranking states have a lot going for them in terms of patriotism, it’s important to remember that many traits of patriotism come down to the individual and individual actions.

Voting and engaging in politics is a way to show your patriotism. So too is supporting troops, public institutions, and helping make your community a better place to live.

Of course, it’s also okay to show off your patriotism with loud, red, white, and blue fireworks and a great barbecue.

The Most Patriotic States, From Most To Least

Rank State Voters In 2016 Historic Landmarks Veterans
1 Virginia 67% 121 8.0%
2 Florida 66% 46 6.8%
3 Maryland 67% 75 6.2%
4 Maine 73% 44 8.0%
5 Alaska 62% 50 9.2%
6 South Carolina 57% 76 7.1%
7 Washington 66% 24 7.1%
8 Massachusetts 68% 189 4.6%
8 Ohio 64% 76 6.2%
8 Pennsylvania 64% 169 6.1%
11 North Carolina 65% 39 6.4%
12 Colorado 72% 25 6.5%
13 New Mexico 55% 46 7.1%
14 Georgia 60% 49 6.0%
15 Alabama 59% 38 6.8%
16 California 58% 147 4.1%
17 New Jersey 66% 58 3.8%
17 Wisconsin 71% 43 5.9%
19 Oregon 68% 17 6.8%
20 Montana 64% 28 8.0%
21 Arizona 56% 46 6.7%
21 Illinois 63% 88 4.7%
23 Hawaii 43% 33 7.5%
24 New York 57% 273 3.8%
25 Connecticut 65% 63 4.9%
26 New Hampshire 73% 23 7.2%
27 Michigan 66% 42 5.7%
28 Louisiana 61% 54 5.4%
29 Missouri 62% 36 6.7%
30 Wyoming 60% 27 7.8%
31 Texas 52% 47 5.1%
32 Iowa 69% 26 6.0%
33 Kansas 60% 26 6.2%
34 Minnesota 75% 25 5.5%
35 Oklahoma 53% 22 6.9%
36 Delaware 65% 14 6.8%
36 Indiana 58% 42 5.8%
38 Kentucky 60% 32 6.1%
39 Tennessee 52% 30 6.4%
40 Mississippi 57% 40 5.7%
40 Vermont 65% 18 6.2%
42 Nebraska 64% 21 6.2%
43 Rhode Island 60% 45 5.4%
44 Nevada 57% 8 6.8%
45 West Virginia 51% 16 7.5%
46 South Dakota 60% 16 6.7%
47 Idaho 61% 10 6.4%
48 Arkansas 53% 17 6.7%
49 North Dakota 62% 7 6.1%
50 Utah 58% 14 3.8%
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