State of Jefferson
In late 1941, counties on the Oregon/California border considered leaving, until the Pearl Harbor attack turned organizers’ attentions to more pressing concerns.
Upset about a Continental Congress decision awarding their corner of the Ohio Valley to Pennsylvania, a group of erstwhile Virginians sought to break away. In 1782, Pennsylvania made advocating for “Westslyvania” punishable by death.
Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard
After legislators gerrymandered the islands into a district dominated by Cape Cod, residents marched on Beacon Hill announcing their intention to depart Massachusetts.
In 1980, a newspaper columnist proposed that this region secede from the Garden State. It was a joke. But locals decided they liked the idea: Six counties south of Trenton held nonbinding referendums—and five of them approved the measure.