American Nations: First Impressions

Colin Woodward's 11 Nations of North America


I’ve found a delightful surprise in the bookstore: “American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America.”

This new book (it was published September 30th) is a successor to Joel Garreau’s The Nine Nations of North America (1981) which has been a subject of much discussion on this website. It seems that we weren’t alone here in writing about the United States and Canada as dysfunctional multinational federations which are giving way to emerging ethnostates.

According to Woodward, there are 11 regional subnations in North America:

(1) New France – Quebec and Louisiana.

(2) Greater Appalachia – Scots-Irish Upper South/South Midwest.

(3) Deep South – Core Confederacy.

(4) Tidewater – Eastern Virginia, Northeast North Carolina, East Maryland, South Delaware.

(5) Yankeedom – New England, New York State, North Pennsylvania, Northwest Indiana, Western Reserve Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Eastern Dakotas, Far North Illinois, Eastern South Dakota, Eastern North Dakota.

(6) New Netherland – NYC, North New Jersey, Southwest Connecticut.

(7) Midlands – Ontario, Central North Dakota, Central South Dakota, Iowa, Eastern Nebraska, Central Kansas, Western Oklahoma, Northwest Missouri, Central Illinois, North Indiana, North Ohio, Central and Southeast Pennsylvania, South New Jersey, North Delaware, North Maryland.

(8) El Norte – North Mexico, South Arizona, South Texas, East New Mexico, South Colorado, Southeast California.

(9) Left Coast – Synonymous with Ecotopia.

(10) Far West – Synonymous with Empty Quarter. Montana, Wyoming, North Colorado, Western North Dakota, Western South Dakota, Western Nebraska, Western Kansas, Utah, North Arizona, Nevada, Idado, East California, Western Oregon, Western Washington, Alberta, Saskatchewan, East British Columbia, West Manitoba.

(11) First Nation – Indian region of North Canada

Four introductory essays to this book can be found here, here, here and here which describe all the subnations.

In 2008, with the U.S. divided between red states and blue states, then-candidate Barack Obama called for unity over division, a common shout-out among politicians and others determined to preserve America’s under- siege, allegedly shared values. Yet such calls ignore the fact that there are no shared “American values.” We’ve always been divided. And not truly along state lines.

America’s most essential and abiding divisions stem from the fact that the U.S. is a federation composed of the whole or parts of 11 disparate regional cultures — each exhibiting conflicting agendas and the characteristics of nationhood — and which respect neither state nor international boundaries, bleeding over the borders of Canada and Mexico as readily as they divide California, Texas, Illinois or Pennsylvania. The differences between them shaped the scope and nature of the American Revolution, the Articles of Confederation, the Constitution and, most tragically, the Civil War. Since 1960, the fault lines between these nations have been growing wider, fueling culture wars, constitutional struggles and those ever- present pleas for unity.

These “nations” have been with us all along.

In this book, Garreau’s “Ecotopia” has become Woodward’s Left Coast, Garreau’s MexAmerica is Woodward’s El Norte, Garreau’s Empty Quarter is Woodward’s “Far West” minus the Indian sections of North Canada, Garreau’s Dixie has been subdivided into Tidewater, Deep South, New France, and Greater Appalachia, Garreau’s New England has been expanded across the Deep North to the Dakotas, Garreau’s Quebec has been hitched to South Louisiana as New France, South Florida isn’t addressed, and Garreau’s Foundry has been cannibalized and reduced to “Midlands.”

The greatest mystery that strikes me is how Dixie has been subdivided into Deep South, Tidewater, New France, and Greater Appalachia. After flipping through the book, my first impression is that there is an intelligent explanation for this.

“The original North American colonies were settled by people from distinct regions of the British Islands, and from France, the Netherlands, and Spain, each with their own religious, political, and ethnographic characteristics. Throughout the colonial period, they regarded one another as competitors – for land, settlers, and capital – and occasionally as enemies, as was the case during the English Civil War, when Royalist Virginia stood against Puritan Massachusetts, or when New Netherland and New France were invaded and occupied by English-speaking soldiers, statesmen, and merchants. Only when London began treating its colonies as a single unit – and enacted policies threatening to nearly all – did some of these distinct societies briefly come together to win a revolution and create a joint government. Nearly all of them would seriously consider leaving the Union in the eighty-year period after Yorktown; several went to war to do so in the 1860s. All of these centuries-old cultures are still with us today, and have spread their people, ideas, and influence across mutually exclusive bands of the continent. There isn’t and never has been one America, but rather several Americas.

Woodward accurately explains the last 150 years of American history as a clash between a “Dixie bloc” and a “Yankeedom bloc.” The various subregions within Dixie such as New France, Greater Appalachia, and Tidewater have consolidated since the demise of slavery in the War Between the States.

I have long made this argument:

“The United States had Founding Fathers, to be sure, but they were the grandfathers, great-grandfathers, or great-great grandfathers of the men who met to sign the Declaration of Independence and to draft our first two constitutions. Our true Founders didn’t have an “original intent” we can refer back to in challenging times; they had original intents. . .

Few have shown any indication that they are melting into some sort of unified American culture. On the contrary, since 1960 the fault lines between these nations have been growing wider, fueling culture wars, constitutional struggles, and ever more frequent pleas for unity.

The War Between the States and the “Second Reconstruction” (a term explicitly used by Woodward) is explained as a fundamental collision between the Dixie bloc and the Yankeedom bloc.

“The Deep South was founded by Barbados slave lords as a West Indies-style slave society, a system so cruel and despotic that it shocked even its seventeenth-century English contemporaries. For most of American history, the region has been the bastion of white supremacy, aristocratic privilege, and a version of classical Republicanism modeled on the slave states of the ancient world, where democracy was a privilege of the few and enslavement the natural lot of the many. It remains the least democratic of the nations, a one-party entity where race remains the primary determinant of one’s political affiliations.

Beginning from its Charleston beachhead, the Deep South spread apartheid and authoritarianism across the Southern lowlands, eventually encompassing most of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, and Louisiana; western Tennessee; and the southeastern parts of North Carolina, Arkansas, and Texas. Its territorial ambitions in Latin America frustrated, in the 1860s it dragged the federation into a horrific war in an attempt to form its own nation-state, backed by reluctant allies in Tidewater and some corners of Appalachia. After successfully resisting a Yankee-led occupation, it became the center of the states’ rights movement, racial segregation, and labor and environmental deregulation. It’s also the wellspring of African-American culture, and four decades after it was forced to allow blacks to vote, it remains politically polarized on racial grounds. Having forged an uneasy “Dixie” coalition with Appalachia and Tidewater in the 1870s, the Deep South is locked in an epic battle with Yankeedom and its Left Coast and New Netherland allies for the future of the federation.

There is a lot of truth in this book – especially as it relates to the “Ecotopia” subnation of the West Coast, and the peculiarities of Yankeedom. We are going to spend at least a week discussing this and comparing and contrasting American Nations with the Nine Nations of North America.

What’s the Left Coast? This is the only place where “West Coast White Nationalism” could possibly thrive:

A Chile-shaped nation pinned between the Pacific and the Cascade and Coast mountain ranges, the Left Coast extends in a strip from Monterey, California, to Juneau, Alaska, including four decidedly progressive metropolises: San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver. A wet region of staggering natural beauty, it was originally colonized by two groups: merchants, missionaries, and woodsmen from New England (who arrived by sea and controlled the towns) and farmers, prospectors, and fur traders from Greater Appalachia (who arrived by wagon and dominated the countryside). Originally slated by Yankees to become a “New England on the Pacific: – and the target of a dedicated Yankee missionary effort – the Left Coast retained a strong strain of New England intellectualism and idealism even as it embraced a culture of individual fulfillment.

Today it combines the Yankee faith in good government and social reform with a commitment to individual self-exploration and discovery, a combination that has proven to be fecund. The Left Coast has been the birthplace of the modern environmental movement and the global information revolution (it is home to Microsoft, Google, Apple, Twitter, and Silicon Valley), and the cofounder (along with New Netherland) of the gay rights movement, the peace movement, and the cultural revolution of the 1960s. Ernest Callenbach’s 1975 sci-fi novel Ecotopia imagined the U.S. portion of the region as having broken off into a separate, environmentally stable nation at odds with the resent of the continent. The modern secessionist movement seeks to create the sovereign state of Cascadia by adding in British Columbia and southern Alaska as well, creating a “bioregional cooperative commonwealth.” The closest ally of Yankeedom, it battles constantly against the libertarian-corporate agenda of its neighbor, the Far West.

Garreau and Woodward are both in agreement that the American North is several different places: it is Yankeeland, Nation of Immigrants/Midlands/Foundry, Ecotopia/Left Coast, and the New York City metropolitan area which is a city-state.

What is Yankeeland?

Yankeedom was founded on the shores of Massachusetts Bay by radical Calvinists as a new Zion, a religious utopia in the New England wilderness. From the outset it was a culture that put great emphasis on education, local political control, and the pursuit of the “greater good” of the community, even if it required individual self denial. Yankees have the greatest faith in the potential of government to improve people’s lives, tending to see it as an extension of the citizenry, and a vital bulwark against the schemes of grasping aristocrats, corporations, and outside powers. For more than four centuries, Yankees have sought to build a more perfect society here on Earth through social engineering, relatively extensive citizen involvement in the political process, and the aggressive assimilation of foreigners. Settled by stable, educated families, Yankeedom has always had a middle-class ethos and considerable respect for intellectual achievement. Its religious zeal has waned over time, but not its underlying drive to improve the world and the set of moral and social values that scholars have sometimes described as “secular Puritanism.”

From its New England core, Yankee culture spread with its settlers across upper New York State, the northern strips of Pennsylvan ia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa; parts of the eastern Dakotas; and on up into Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and the Canadian Maritimes. It has been locked in nearly perpetual combat with the Deep South for control of the federal government since the moment such a thing existed.

Yankeeland’s greatest achievement since the Emancipation Proclamation and the Progressive Movement and the New Deal and the Civil Rights Movement and the Great Society … was the election of Barack Hussein Obama, our first black president, in the year 2008.

For 150 years, Yankeeland has been opposed by Dixie which has resisted every single one of these utopian social engineering schemes from abolitionism to civil rights to women’s liberation to gay marriage.

What is the Cracker Nation? That’s where the Hoosier Nation is located.

Greater Appalachia was founded in the early eighteenth century by wave upon wave of rough, bellicose settlers from the war-ravaged borderlands of Northern Ireland, northern England, and the Scottish lowlands. Lampooned by writers, journalists, filmmakers, and television producers as “rednecks,” hillbillies,” crackers,” and “white trash,” these clannish Scots-Irish, Scots, and north English frontiersmen spread across the highland South and on into the southern tiers of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois; the Arkansas and Missouri Ozarks; the eastern two-thirds of Oklahoma; and the Hill Country of Texas, clashing with Indians, Mexicans, and Yankees as they migrated.

In the British Isles, this culture had formed in a state of near-constant war and upheaval, fostering a warrior ethic and a deep commitment to individual liberty and personal sovereignty. Intensely suspicious of aristocrats and social reformers alike, these American Borderlanders despised Yankee teachers, Tidewater lords, and Deep Southern aristocrats. In the Civil War much of the region fought for the Union, with secession movements in western Virginia (creating West Virginia), eastern Tennessee, and northern Alabama. During Reconstruction the region resisted the Yankee effort to liberate African slaves, driving it into a lasting alliance with its former enemies: the overlords of the Tidewater and Deep Southern lowlands of Dixie. The Borderlander’s combative culture has provided a large proportion of the nation’s military, from officers like Andrew Jackson, Davy Crockett, and Douglas MacArthur to the enlisted men fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq. They also gave the continent bluegrass and country music, stock car racing, and Evangelical fundamentalism. Greater Appalachia’s people have long had a poor awareness of their cultural origins. One scholar of the Scots-Irish has called them “the people with no name.” When U.S. census takers ask Appalachian people what their nationality or ethnicity is, they almost always answer “American” or even “Native American.”

Woodward seems to envision a late twenty-first century world where North America has broken apart like the Roman Empire and national lines are redrawn around the subnations which emerge from the wreckage like France, Germany, Italy, and Spain.

Let’s get started!

About Hunter Wallace 12380 Articles
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Occidental Dissent


  1. There was an additional reason that Northern soldiers fought, — states rights. In “Romanticism and Nationalism in the Old South,” Rollin G. Osterweis quotes a Northern soldier replying to the question as to what he was doing invading the South with something along the lines of ” My state told me to.”

  2. chris’ post shows a fundamental lack of knowledge and understanding that would be surprising if I didn’t know better. A few hours of research over a few weeks would set the record straight but…. It doesn’t take much in the way of book learning to see a pattern of yankee interference with the Southern way of life. It does take a willingness to go past the public indoctrination most folks get in the yankee inspired compulsory political reeducation camps (public schools system). “Our nation” was growing apart as far back as 1820; we are different people with different social institutions, different experiences, different character traits etc and we’d all be better off as separate nations.
    Blacks weren’t a problem in the US until the damnyankees decided to free them in an attempt to make their illegal war of aggression legitimate on the world stage. Even marx went from disapproving of the war to approving the war. Then the damnyankees doubled down on their mistakes with reconstructions and then double downed again by forcing the civil rights movement on us.
    Maybe y’all would understand this lot better if you knew of the economic and social reasons for the war of northern aggression and how the north had been exploiting the South and our slave economy to its benefit. But starting around the 1820 or so, the north decided push the South. Some yankee editors were even calling for slave up raisings to kill Southern White people. The north began thinking of the US as one giant nation, the South still believed it to be a group of free and separate republics coming together on certain key issues. Mean while the South was paying the price for high protectionist tariffs which protected the north and its new manufacturing economy. The north got to buy raw materials from the South at an artificially low price. The South was buying yankee made finished goods at an artificially high price. The tariffs paid by the South went for improvements in the north. Even the “free soil” movement had to do with luring cheaper European immigrant labor to the northern factories with the implied promise that after a few years of hard work and careful savings, immigrants could save enough money to buy their own farm out west. All the while, yankees were talking down to us.
    Many Jews fought for freedom and the South during the war. Some folks estimate that as many as 11,000 Jews were Confederate soldiers. Blacks fought for the South too, in integrated units before yankees armed their negros. And the Cherokee fought the yankees as well. Things are a lot more complex then folk think. Blaming Jews for our problems sounds a lot like side stepping personal responsibility to me. I’m responsible for my actions and inactions.
    The Immigration Act of 1965 is another wonderful gift from the damnyankees.

  3. Blaming today’s Northerner’s for the sins of abolitionists makes as much sense as Blacks blaming their current condition on slavery. Give up the damn Yankee stuff.

    Blaming Jews for what Jews have done in my lifetime, and continue to do, is not side stepping personal responsibility.

    Don’t imagine that the South is going to just walk away from the Union, while the rest of us are under Leviathan’s rule. As long as D.C. controls most of us, it will not allow anybody out. How well would New England have fared against England in 1776, without the mid-Atlantic and Southern colonies? Would the Confederacy have lasted four years without Virginia? The South may lead the rest of the states to liberation, but if nobody follows, they’re not going anywhere.

  4. Discard,

    (1) Every single representative from New England voted for the DREAM Act and repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. Just as single state in the North voted to make Barack Hussein Obama our president.

    (2) In the Senate, New England voted for the DREAM Act.

    (3) Have you seen the vote on the Civil Rights Act of 1964? What about the vote on the Immigration Act of 1965?

    By a 9 to 1 margin, the Northern states voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964. By a 9 to 1 margin, the Southern states voted against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – it took a Northern supermajority to block the longest filibuster in the history of the U.S. Senate.

    (4) It is a myth that “Jews are behind it all” – it wasn’t true in Reconstruction, and it wasn’t true in the Civil Rights Movement either. Jews had nothing to do with the former, but they were highly involved with the latter.

    (5) The salvation of the South lies in separating from the Union – because, it is the context of the Union that drives every bit of this, other sections have allied themselves with blacks and Hispanics in order to rule the South.

    (6) As someone who lives in California, you should be know what it is like to live under the gentry liberals who have allied themselves with Hispanics in order to destroy White California.

    You also know exactly where those people live – in the coastal strip of blue counties north of Los Angeles to Seattle – The Left Coast.

  5. Having lived in California, specifically Los Angeles, I know exactly what it is to live under the gentry liberals. I also know know exactly who their masters are, who runs the media that presents them in the best possible light, and who puts up the money for their campaigns and organizations. West Los Angeles was where the Beast lived, and simply reading the L.A. Times Metro section with a Jewishly aware eye was enough to explain much of what was happening.
    The votes of the different states’ congressional delegations do not represent the will of the people of the states, but instead, just how far powerful, unseen interests can push things with the press and most other large institutions backing them. What proportion of the people do leftists actually need on their side to win an election? A third? A quarter? The bulk of voters have little or no understanding of issues, they follow what they think is the common wisdom. They have jobs and hobbies and kids to look after. If they did have a grasp of things, we’d have no trouble speaking about racial realities publicly. This website wouldn’t need to exist, because Limbaugh and Hannity and Beck would be saying the same thing.
    So it is that states that have a good-sized set of urban cosmopolitans (Jew or Gentile), some non-Whites, some union voters or a lot of government employees, adding up to maybe 30% of the electorate, will elect some leftist to the Senate. Fault the people for not understanding the issues, or for having better things to do, but don’t blame them for putting Blacks or Mexicans in your schools. And even when the people do begin to get the picture, the courts rule against them or the government refuse to carry out their decision. The people of California voted against affirmative action, against immigration, against fag marriage, and had it all crammed down their throats anyway.

  6. “Dixie alone had anti-miscegenation laws in 1967 …”

    If it took from 1865 until 1967 for “America” to strike down Dixie’s anti-mis laws, then how can it be argued that Yankeeland’s agenda was forcing “racial equality” on America ? If Yankees wished racial equality in the South and throughout America, it would have forced it there and then upon a prostrate and badly defeated South. Instead Posse Comtatus was invoked, military occupation (unlike Germany) was ended and the USSC struck down the law. And how can it be argued that a Jewish strategy to defeat antisemitism by framing it as an aspect of racial prejudice in general, a problem attributable to pathological individuals who engaged in discrimination and whose behaviour influenced the attitudes and prejudices of the public, can be equated with Sumner’s motivations? Even in his wildest outbursts against “the harlot, Slavery” Sumner did not believe that the people of the South engaged in pathological acts of discrimination that were a threat to the well-being of Yankees. Philosophically, the two are polls apart. Civil rights legislation 1964 does not follow from civil rights legislation 1875.

  7. Desmond,

    (1) Most of the anti-miscegenation laws in the South were repealed by the Yankee-controlled Reconstruction governments. They were later reestablished when the South was “redeemed” by its own people.

    (2) The Union Army was physically withdrawn from the South in 1877. Without the military occupation, the reviled carpetbagger-scalawag-negro coalition couldn’t survive in such a hostile political atmosphere.

    (3) The Supreme Court gutted Reconstruction in the Civil Rights Cases and the Plessy decision.

    (4) FDR’s appointments to the Supreme Court in the Great Depression began to change the nature of the Supreme Court which started attacking Jim Crow in the Gaines decision in 1938.

    (5) The Yankees did force racial equality upon a prostate South. They forced racial equality upon the North as well in that period where it actually survived.

    (6) The whole language of “civil rights” in America goes back to Reconstruction and the attempt by Yankees to ensure that their “liberated” negro noble savages were transformed into American citizens with all the rights and privileges of White men in the South.

    (7) Toward this great objective, the Freedmen’s Bureau was established, the Reconstruction Amendments, the Civil Rights Act of 1866, the Anti-Klan Act of 1871, and the Civil Rights Act of 1875 were passed. In 1890, Henry Cabot Lodge’s Force Bill was defeated in Congress by opposition from New Netherland, but it was approved by Yankeedom.

    (8) Stretching between the Reconstruction Amendments and Harry Truman’s push for a civil rights bill are dozens of state laws in the North which repealed anti-miscegenation laws, which banned “racial discrimination,” and which explicitly banned “segregation” in the Northern states, not to mention the push for the “anti-lynching bill” which was defeated by Southern filibusters in the Senate, and the support of most Northern presidents (with the exceptions of Wilson and Hoover) for “civil rights.”

    (9) The Civil Rights Act of 1875 was the ancestor of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – both pieces of federal legislation were designed to accomplish the same objective, which was to force integration on the South.

    (10) Oh, let’s not forget … the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed by a 9 to 1 margin in only the Northern states by a sectional supermajority of Northern Democrats and Northern Republicans which was necessary to overcome the longest filibuster in the history of the U.S. Senate.

Comments are closed.