California is a state spanning the
southern half of the United States west coast.
The area was inhabited by Native
Americans before European explorers started to make sporadic visitations
during the 16th Century.
Starting in 1769 Spain colonized the coastal areas of the
territory, before it temporarily became part of Mexico after the Mexican
War of Independence (1810-21).
The California Republic, was an independent state which was short-lived,
during 1846, and was effectively ended by the Mexican-American War.
At the outset of the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), the state was
captured by 500 American soldiers and sailors.
Following the war, the area was bought by the United States in the
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.
The California Gold Rush of 1848-49 brought about 90,000 additional
American immigrants into the state.
California became the 31st state of the United States in 1850.
California borders the
Oregon, Arizona, Nevada,
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