The Susquehanna River (originally "Sasquesahanough" according to the 1612 John Smith map) is a river located in the northeastern United States. At approximately 444 mi (715 km) long, it is the longest river on the American east coast and the 16th longest in the United States. The Susquehanna forms from two main branches, with the North Branch, which rises in upstate New York often regarded as an extension of the main branch. The shorter West Branch, which rises in western Pennsylvania, is sometimes regarded as the principal tributary, joining the North Branch near Northumberland in central Pennsylvania. The river drains 27,500 square miles (71,225 km²), covering nearly half of the land area of Pennsylvania and portions of New York and Maryland. The drainage basin (watershed) includes portions of the Allegheny Plateau region of the Appalachian Mountains, cutting through water gaps in the lateral mountain ridges in a broad zigzag course to flow across the rural heartland of southeastern Pennsylvania and northeastern Maryland. The river empties into the northern end of the Chesapeake Bay, the ria of the Susquehanna, providing half of the freshwater inflow for the entire Chesapeake Bay. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susquehanna River
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