North American Overlay Mapping
Layer Notes - States and Provinces
The United States of America (USA) is divided into 50 states + the District of Columbia (DC). Canada is divided into 13 provinces. Mexico is divided into 32 states, though not all are shown in the North American Overlay Mapper, which has a southern border of 24 ° North. A full, sortable list of these 96 areas can be seen by clicking 'Tools' > 'Table Viewer', and choosing 'States and Provinces' from the Select List.
The USA states and Canadian provinces use a two-letter code for an abbreviation, though the Northwest Territories can also use the three-letter 'NWT'. Mexican states all use a three-letter code.
The state/province names and abbreviations are used as an exchange in a number of contests, mainly the international events.
The ARRL does not use the states as region-identifiers in its organisation due to amateur population density; instead it divides the USA into 15 Divisions and 71 Sections. For more details, see the 'ARRL Section' page here.
The different states and provinces have a background layer as well as a foreground overlay in the North American Overlay Mapper. The background layer consists of colored areas and borders that define each state or province area; the foreground overlay consists of colored borders and text. The reason for this separation is so that the state/province borders and text can be overlayed and compared with other data; i.e. to see where the state/province borders are on the relief map, or to see which sections fall within which state area.