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Miss America

The Miss America pageant is a long-standing beauty competition which awards prizes to young women contestants from the states of the United States of America.

It originated in 1921 as a beauty contest. The Miss America Pagent prefers to avoid the term, since beauty is no longer the only criterion used to judge contestants.

Miss America is connected to various subsidiary programs throughout the U.S.A. Local contests select local representatives (eg, "Miss Mobile, Alabama") who go on to participate in state pagents (eg, for "Miss Alabama"). The winners of the various state pagents (plus a pagent for "Miss District of Columbia") go on to compete for the title of "Miss America" at an annual competition held in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Prizes are given at local, state, and national level, consisting most commonly of scholarships for use in higher education, sometimes suplimented with money and merchandise donated by sponsors.

The Miss America Pagent has been nationally televised since 1954. From 1955 through 1979 the long-term emcee of the Miss America Pagent was Bert Parks[?].

In the 1990s the pageant was reformed into The Miss America Organization, a not-for-profit corporation with three divisions: the Miss America Pageant, a scholarship fund, and a Miss America foundation.

Winners

YearMiss AmericaState
2003Erika Harold[?]Illinois
2002Katie Harman[?]Oregon
2001Angela Perez Baraquio[?]Hawaii
2000Heather French[?]Kentucky
1999Nicole Johnson[?]Virginia
 
1921Margaret Gorman[?]Washington, DC

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