The State of Hawaii (Hawaiian: Mokuʻāina o Hawaiʻi) became the 50th state of the United States of America on August 21, 1959. The archipelagic state is situated in the North Pacific Ocean, 2,300 miles (3,700 km) from the mainland. In the 19th century, Hawaii was also known as the Sandwich Islands.
In dialects of American English, Hawaii is pronounced at least three different ways: (IPA pronunciation: [hə.ˈwaɪ.ji], [hə.ˈwaɪ.i], [hə.ˈwaɪ.ʔi]). In the Hawaiian language, there is also some variation possible, but the most general pronunciation is [hə.ˈvəi.ʔi] or [hə.ˈwəi.ʔi]. This last Hawaiian pronunciation is often used by native English-speaking Hawaiian residents as well.