What's in a Nickname? The State Nickname Quiz

By: Alia Hoyt
Estimated Completion Time
1 min
What's in a Nickname? The State Nickname Quiz
Image: CashNetUSA

About This Quiz

It's hard to sum up something as big as a state in just a few words, but that doesn't stop them from trying! What does it mean to be from the "Show-Me" state or to be a Sooner? Find out how vast your state nickname knowledge is taking our quiz.
Indiana is known as the "Hoosier State." What is a hoosier, anyway?
a bird
a content person
The word was inspired by an 1833 poem called "The Hoosier's Nest." A hoosier (also sometimes spelled "hoosher") is a person from Indiana who is happy with the state, its landscape, and the individualism they enjoy and foster.
a settler
Which American classic novel is credited with Iowa's nickname the "Hawkeye State"?
"The Last of the Mohicans"
Based on a character in the novel, the nickname actually took hold about eight years before Iowa even became a state. It was also a tribute to an Indian warrior called Chief Black Hawk who lived in the area.
"White Fang"
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn"
Which famed general dubbed Maryland the "Old Line State"?
Benedict Arnold
George Washington
A regiment from Maryland fought so bravely at the Battle of Long Island during the Revolutionary War that the future president named an entire state after them.
Nathanael Greene


Arkansas is currently known as the "Natural State," but what was its nickname previously?
Land of Opportunity
The Arkansas parks system lobbied the state for the official nickname change in 1995, as tribute to its natural beauty. In 2011, a senator tried to introduce a bill to restore its previous nickname as he wanted Arkansas to be seen are more than just a vacation spot.
Land of Many Pines
Land of Wal-Mart
Which state is known as the "Centennial State"?
Colorado officially achieved statehood in 1876, exactly 100 years after the Declaration of Independence was signed.
During which war did Tennessee earn the nickname the "Volunteer State"?
The American Civil War
The War of 1812
General Andrew Jackson led a regiment of volunteer soldiers from Tennessee that was so successful that it inspired a nickname. Tennessee also had a massive number of volunteers for the Mexican-American War.
American Revolutionary War


Why is Oklahoma called the "Sooner State"?
It's a corruption of a Native American word.
Early pioneer settlers rushed to claim land before others could.
On April 22, 1889, Oklahoma Territory was officially opened for white settlement on a first-come basis. Those who snuck in early to claim a spot before this date were called Sooners. The nickname later came to symbolize the "can-do" spirit of the state.
Texans dubbed Oklahomans after noticing they preferred to be early (sooner) rather than late to events.
Who is likely the source behind Missouri's unofficial nickname, the "Show-Me State"?
a U.S. Congressman from Missouri
The origin isn't certain, but many people believe the name was inspired by a speech given by congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver in 1899, during which he said, "...frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I am from Missouri. You have got to show me."
President and Missouri native Harry S. Truman
that guy from "Jerry Maguire" who said "Show me the money!"
New Mexico auditioned a lot of nicknames before settling on one. Which of the following was not an option?
"The Land of the Heart's Desire"
"The Land of Sun and Science"
New Mexico eventually landed on "The Land of Enchantment," based on a book title. It also tried for "The Sunshine State," but was too slow because Florida made it official first.
"The Atomic State"


Why is Wyoming known as the "Equality State"?
The state never had slaves.
It was the first to pass hate crime laws.
It was the first state to pass women's rights legislation.
Women in Wyoming could vote, hold public office and serve on juries before women anywhere else in the country.
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