Statul Dakota de Sud este statul Uniunii cu cele mai numeroase zone de teritoriu neorganizat, 102, care ocupă peste 52% din suprafața întregului stat
Printr-o zonă de teritoriu neorganizat (în englezăunorganized territory) se înțelege o regiune sau o porțiune din suprafața Statelor Unite care nu are vreo formă clar organizată de guvern local sau regional. Acest fapt nu înseamnă că acea zonă teritorială nu are nicio formă de guvernare (care ar putea fi o jurisdicție de comitat, districtuală, municipală, statală sau federală) sau că este o porțiune teritorială care nu aparține nimănui. De obicei, astfel de zone teritoriale, care nu au nimic de a face cu enclavele teritoriale, sunt slab sau foarte slab populate.
Istoric, termenul de teritoriu neorganizat a fost folosit pentru a desemna a suprafață din pământul/teritoriul (care juridic apaținea Statelor Unite), unde nu exista/există control guvernamental efectiv al tuturor problemelor de zi cu zi. Astfel de exemple sunt extrem de numeroase în istoria Statelor Unite ale Americii, întrucât începând cu venirea primilor coloniști englezi, la începutul anilor 1600, trecând prin constituirea statului federal (1775 - 1797) și terminând cu expansiunea Uniunii spre vest, până la ocuparea completă a spațiului dintre ambele oceane, mai jos de paralela de 49 de grade latitudinenordică, pe măsura ce spațiul controlat progresa spre vest și suprafețele teritoriale neorganizate se îmnmulțeau.
număunde Istoric folosit, termenul de "teritoriu neorganizat" (conform, "unorganized territory") a fost folosit pentru zone was applied to an area in which there was no effective government control of affairs on a day-to-day basis, such as the former U.S. territories where the government exerted only transient control when its forces were actually present. In modern usage it indicates an area in which no local government exists, or exists only in embryonic form. In such case, the territory is governed by the possessing nation or constituent unit.Format:Clarify
The term has several denotations and connotations depending on the exact usage and context. These lightly governed regions were common in the 19th-century during the growth of United States. Large tracts such as the Louisiana Territory, Missouri Territory and the Oregon Country were established by Congress. Later, a portion of a territory would organize and achieve the requirements for statehood, leaving the remainder unorganized.
Unorganized territories, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, occur in 10 minor civil division (MCD) states (Arkansas, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, and South Dakota) where portions of counties are not included in any legally established MCD or independent incorporated place. The U.S. Census Bureau recognizes such separate pieces of territory as one or more separate county subdivisions for statistical purposes. It assigns each unorganized territory a descriptive name, followed by the designation "unorganized territory." Unorganized territories were first used for statistical purposes in conjunction with the 1960 census.
At the 2000 census there were 305 of these territories within the United States. Their total land area was 85,392.23 square miles (221,164.87 km2), or larger than the entire state of Idaho. There was a total population of 247,331 on these lands. South Dakota has the most unorganized territories, 102, as well as the largest amount of land under that status, 39,784.78 square miles (103,042.114 km2), or 52.428 percent of the state's land area. North Dakota follows with 86 territories, 20,358.27 square miles (52,727.67 km2), or 29.515 percent of its land area. Maine is next with 36 territories, 14,052.47 square miles (36,395.73 km2), or 45.534 percent of its land area. Minnesota has 71 territories, 10,552.05 square miles (27,329.68 km2), or 13.255 percent of its land area. The other states have very insignificant amounts of unorganized territory. The unorganized territory with the largest population is Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, a United States Marine Corps base with a census population of 34,452 inhabitants.
An unorganized territory is also a United States territory for which the United States Congress has not enacted an organic act. In this sense, unorganized territories are lands possessed by the federal U.S. government but which are not within any of the states of the Union and have not been "organized" into self-governing units. Currently, all federal unorganized territory is considered to be an Insular area, administered by the Office of Insular Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior. American Samoa is technically unorganized, in that Congress has not passed an organic act, but is effectively self-governing, under terms of a constitution last revised in 1967, except that its inhabitants aren't U.S. citizens. As of 2006, Palmyra Atoll is the only unorganized incorporated U.S. territory.
In 1858, the western part of the Minnesota Territory became unorganized when it was not included in the new state of Minnesota; this area was organized in 1861 as part of the Dakota Territory. On May 2, 1890, the western half of the Indian Territory was organized as Oklahoma. The remainder was incorporated into the State of Oklahoma upon its admission to the union in 1907.
Alaska was an unorganized territory between its acquisition by the United States in 1867 and the creation of the Alaska Territory in 1912.
In modern parlance, such territory would be considered incorporated territory (i.e., part of the United States proper), yet not organized territory. However, the distinction between incorporated and non-incorporated territory did not arise until the territorial acquisitions following the Spanish-American War in 1898.
Zone de teritoriu neorganizat există în anumite regiuni din Canada, așa cum este Northern Ontario, unde nu există guvern local regional. În Quebec, teritoriile neorganizate nu se găsesc în interiorul limitelor vreunei municipalități, demonstrând caracterul similar al acestora cu cele din Statele Unite.