51 or 52 United States? The Mandela Effect

AngelicView:The Mandela Effect” is a term coined to describe the phenomenon of large numbers of people remembering something one way, and others remembering it another way. The theory is that both groups of people are correct, but one group came from one timeline or reality and another group came from another timeline or reality. Based upon current Quantum Mechanics theories, this could definitely be the case. It was called “The Mandella Effect” thanks to the lovely Fiona Broome, who took notice when Nelsen Mandela seemed to pass away over and over again. Her memory of his previous passing was echoed by a whole lot more people’s memories, too, of the same. This term can also be used to describe alternate histories such as earth geography differences, movie releases, and recent historical events.

Flatland, Alternate Realities, and other Answers

By Fiona Bloome

Alternate realities? Alternate history?

For some people, this is pure fantasy. For others, it’s scary. And, for people like me, it’s an adventure.

Sure, I’ll admit that some of this is a little scary to me.  I’m fine with the gooey and prickly concepts, but rattle my reality and… well, it’s not just what’s changed. It’s wondering what else is different and I haven’t noticed it yet.

If you’re going to wander down this particular rabbit hole, you’d better be prepared for some unsettling (and downright scary) concepts.  They include alternate history and alternate realities.

Let’s consider the possibility that our view of reality — the one you’re taught in school — is severely limited. If we rely on our basic five senses, most people can handle the idea of two and three dimensions.

Expand it to four, five, or eleven dimensions and virtual brain freeze is likely.

Even those who work with those concepts often talk in terms of alternate realities when the fact is:  It may be reality, period. But, that’s just semantics and I’m getting ahead of myself in this discussion anyway. It’s a quirky field of study that I’ve been exploring for years.  If — at the beginning — someone had shown me what I’m writing now, I’d have said, “Okay, that person isn’t even making sense.

Before taking this discussion in interesting directions, I’d like to build a foundation.  Fortunately, people like Dr. Fred Wolf have already created entertaining ways to introduce quantum concepts.

Though that video may seem a little simplistic, it’s a fine introduction if you take these concepts to the next, logical step:  What would happen if a fourth dimension impinged on our current, three-dimensional reality?

I don’t mean “What if it’s out there, somewhere?”  I mean “What if it showed up in the basement, the next time you’re doing laundry?”  How would you interpret it?  What label would you place on it? (I’m amused that, in the video, the flatland people immediately ask if the three-dimensional interference is a ghost.)

To understand what’s going on with the Mandela Effect, it’s key to step beyond the easy answer that “it’s all fantasy.”  There is science to support the ideas of alternate history and alternate realities.

51 or 52 United States?

AngelicView: By the way, I remember there being 52 States 😉

By Fiona Broome

Many people recall the United States including 51 or 52 states, not 50.

The interesting point is that the memories are fairly consistent, and include Puerto Rico as a state. One teacher suggested this is a common misunderstanding. The daughter of a teacher said that she clearly recalls her mother teaching students that the 52 states included Puerto Rico.

So, is this simple confusion or a glimpse into alternate geography in another timestream?

Ben Conroy said:

My experience doesnt involve a memory as much as a strange coincidence. For years I firmly believed there to be 52 states in America. Quite a shock when I found out there was only 50,

After this, I must have asked 25-30 people (in Europe, as I’m Irish), literally everbody I met, how many states in America. Every one said 52. After I said there was 50, their reaction remained ‘oh yea. wierd.’

Maybe theres another explanation for it, but occasionally I still ask and hear 52!

I encourage anybody reading this to ask people away from America (who wouldn’t know as readily) and see how many times 52 is replied!

Joy replied:

I’m from Portugal, and I thought it was 52 states in America too!

Victor agreed:

What the heck? I always thought there were 52 States in America. I’m from Brazil btw.

Jasper Allen (in the U.K.) said the same:

I was also taught at school that America had 52 states.

Siphakeme said:

i grew studying that the US has 52 states too

Kassia said:

52 States (I am European),etc, etc.

aragami agreed:

52 states in the US

miss_fionna said:

I also remember being taught that there was 52 states with Alaska being number 51 (even though at this point I only remember there being 50, and that was over ten years ago.

Kate said:

I seem to have a fuzzy memory of 52 states as well. And i remembered it was 52, because it was the same as the number of cards in a deck. Suddenly at some point it was 50, and I remember thinking…I ‘know’ it was 52. Suddenly teachers were telling me…’You’re confusing this with the number of cards in a deck” which I thought was weird because that’s how we remembered it as kids.

Pam said:

I can say that I live in the US and for some reason I could swear that 52 states has a familiarity. I know I have a couple times had to really think before I said 52 or 52 because I knew it was off somehow. Or I would reword my phrase to not mention a number because I just was not sure anymore.

David (who has an alternate Mandela memory) confirmed confusion about the states:

I am US History teacher in the US and my American students often mistakenly think there are 51 or 52 states at which I just shake my head and say,”kids today.”
I think it’s because there was a lot of talk about Puerto Rico becoming a state, which would have been the 51st… but it hasn’t happened yet.

L. said:

Also, I remember my mother always saying 52 states instead of 50 when I was growing up and getting annoyed because she was a teacher and thats such common knowledge.

Josh asked:

To the people who remember being taught about 52 States, do you remember the names of the other two?

miss_fiona said:

I remember arguing with our teacher over the number because I had been taught that there was fifty until that point. According to her Hawaii was the 51st state, but I don’t remember what she said was the 52nd.

Hoss listed the 52 states as he recalls them, including Puerto Rico and D.C.:

1. Alabama, 2. Alaska, 3. Arizona, 4. Arkansas 5. Colorado 6. California, 7. Connecticut, 8. Delaware, 9. Florida, 10. Georgia, 11. Hawaii, 12. Illinois, 13. Indiana, 14. Idaho, 15. Iowa, 16. Kentucky, 17. Kansas, 18. Louisiana, 19. Massachusetts, 20. Maryland, 21. Mississippi, 22. Maine, 23. Missouri, 24. Michigan 25. Minnesota, 26. Montana, 27. New Jersey, 28. New York, 29. North Carolina 30. New Hampshire, 31. Nevada, 32. Nebraska, 33. North Dakota 34. New Mexico, 35. Oklahoma, 36. Ohio, 37. Oregon, 38. Pennsylvania, 39. Puerto Rico. 40. Rhode Island 41. South Carolina, 42. South Dakota, 43. Tennessee, 44. Texas, 45. Utah, 46. Virginia, 47. Vermont, 48. Wisconsin, 49. West Virginia, 50. Washington, 51. Wyoming, 52. Washington DC

So, I think the question really is: In an alternate timeline, did Puerto Rico already become a state? Or, did the District of Columbia become one, separately or as well?

Or, is this simply confusion over districts, territories, and states?

26 thoughts on “51 or 52 United States? The Mandela Effect

  1. I remember there were 50 states. And this corresponds with Wikipedia.
    DC is regarded as a fedral district, and not a state.

    In addition to the 50 states and federal district, the United States has control over fourteen territories. Five of them (American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) have a permanent, nonmilitary population, while nine of them (the United States Minor Outlying Islands) do not.

  2. I think that I know why people mistake this issue. I do it myself constantly- It is because there are 2 non contiguous states, so rather than 48+2=50, we default to 50 states +2= 52.
    That being said, although I really don’t think this is a timeline issue- I completely believe in them and have have experienced them and have checked my glitches with others in my close group (souls probably traveling in packs, my group) and we all noticed the bumps.
    One example, briefly without the whole explanation, is that my husband and I owned dark blue cameras, which we constantly confused because they were both blue. Now we own one dark blue camera and one black. Freaky freaky freaky. We had those cameras for years. We tore the house apart looking for the original boxes, yep, it said “black”.
    Just one small boring example of the kind of stuff that probably happens all of the time.

  3. This is complete bogus. People thought Mandela died, probably because they only half read newspaper titles about prison, hunger strikes, and suffering.

    Or that something in their brains connects memories of prison, hunger, and suffering to news of his death. “Oh I remember something very sad happening to that black fellow once before. I Must be collectively remembering it from an alternate universe! How strange!”

  4. Pingback: “The Mandela Effect” is a term coine … – Crazy fact

  5. Occam’s Razor suggests that people recall it as such by way of DC being considered distinct and the fact that Puerto Rico has repeatedly made efforts to become a state, often with headlines that read along the lines of “PUERTO RICO: THE 51ST STATE?”

    One should always look for the simplest explanation that fits the available evidence, resorting to conjury of unprovables only once such explanations are discounted.

  6. I’m from the US (Wisconsin) and I remember learning that there are 51 or 52 states as well. Even though I know it’s 50 states, that number always seems wrong. It’s weird because I even remember asking my elementary teacher whether it was 51 or 52 states while trying to draw the names on the map and coloring it. I also remember when I was little asking the question, “why didn’t they just make it 50 states?” and thinking 50 fifty states makes more sense than 51 or 52 because it is a multiple of 10. Come to find out, it is 50 states. I always thought Alaska and Hawaii is what made it go over 50 but that Hawaii wasn’t sometimes considered a state which made some people say 51. I don’t think this has anything to do with an alternate universe but it is pretty weird.

  7. If there is such a thing as alternate realities, then I am a believer. For me personally, I cannot recall the specific year or date but what I can recall is the U.S. has at least 51 states from my reality. I can remember the news broadcast about Hawaii becoming the 51st of the U.S. I feel I was in grate school at the time. early to mid 80’s. I seem to remember it was a toss up between Puerto Rico and Hawaii. I also seem to remember Puerto Rico becoming the 52nd state but was not as widely recognized as Hawaii. I am not certain about the 52 states but I am certain that from my reality there was 51 states with the addition of Hawaii.

  8. When i was little i remember being told that it was 52 then all of a sudden in 7th grade us history the teacher said it was 50 (I live in the US)

  9. I am a 56 y/o American male. I was always taught 50 states (to match the stars on our flag). At no time has Washington DC been a state…it is exactly what it says: “District” of Columbia and is part of the state of Maryland (as I’ve been taught)…Puerto Rico has also never been a state. Alaska was #49 and even a past Hawaiian lisence plate had the adornment that it was “the 50th state”. I have honestly never ran into anyone who thought there were 51 OR 52 states. Like I stated earlier about the american flag….50 stars for 50 states and 13 stripes for the original 13 colonies….(although I am aware of the recent argument of it being only 12 colonies to begin with. Anyway, there it is. Take it or leave it.

  10. Washington DC is not a state. It is a Federal District. The Capital city was purposefully made outside of state jurisdiction to avoid state governments infringing on the workings of the Federal government. Puerto Rico is a federal holding. It is owned by the US but is not a state, although Puerto Rican voters have voted on whether or not to apply for statehood in the past. If territories were to be considered states, then the US Virgin Islands as well as Guam and others would be considered as well, amounting to over 52 states.

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