The Northeast region of the United States is an area extremely rich in natural resources, which is one reason early settlers were so attracted to it. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Northeast encompasses the states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. Historically these states have been important manufacturing areas, especially during the colonial era and Industrial Revolution.
Granite, a versatile and important natural resource used in everything from flooring tiles and kitchen countertops to public monuments and gravestones, can be found in many places throughout the Northeast. It's found most notably in New Hampshire, which adopted the nickname The Granite State for that very reason. Granite is the most common rock found throughout New England. Area residents built thousands of stonewalls during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Today granite from the Northeast is distributed all over the world.
Lumber has been an important natural resource in the Northeast since the very first settlers arrived in the 1600s. During the colonial era, the region's principal industries were lumber, ship building and manufacturing. The Gold Rush of 1849 created a huge boom for the New England lumber industry and prices rose during this time. Spruce, pine, oak and cedar have all been important woods used in the lumber industry at some point or another.
Iron ore has been one of the Northeast’s most valuable natural resources throughout history and was instrumental in the development of the Industrial Revolution in the United States. Iron ores are minerals and rocks from which iron and other metals can be extracted. Steel represents nearly 95 percent of all metal used on earth, and iron ore is a key ingredient in the production of steel. The steel industry exploded during the Industrial Revolution around the turn of the century, especially in Pennsylvania, which operated hundreds of major steel manufacturing plants.
Maple syrup may not be as important or as lucrative as other natural resources, but it is one that is very often associated with the Northeast, especially northern New England. Vermont maple syrup is exported around the world and is famous for its unique flavor and richness. Maple syrup is produced by extracting sap (water filled with natural tree sugars) from maple trees and then boiling it down remove the water. This leaves you with a delicious syrup that can be used on pancakes, waffles, ice cream and other treats. Maple syrup was even important during the Civil War because it was a source of sugar that wouldn't spoil easily for Union soldiers.