Appalachian Mountains

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The Appalachian Mountains are a chain of mountains found in North America, near its east coast. While most maps of the Appalachians, from the United States, show the chain's end in Maine, the most northeastern state in the United States, scholars recognize it also encompasses Quebec's Gaspe peninsula, the western edge of New Brunswick, and the western shore of the Island of Newfoundland.

The chain formed through the collision of continental plates, approximately 500 million years ago.

As an older chain than the Rockie Mountains, and the Himalayas, the mountains are generally lower, and not as imposing. But they still formed a barrier to western settlement of the nascent United States.

In 1775 Daniel Boone led an expedition to blaze a trail across the Cumberland Gap. Forty years later a more practical route across the Appalachians was developed when a canal was built through the Mohawk Valley, across New York State, to Buffalo, New York, at the eastern tip of Lake Erie.