Put the Scrabble board aside and just concern yourself with the 100 tiles. Using those tiles, what is the longest list of names of States of the United States you can create? No crossing words or sharing tiles between States, just try to spell out as many of the State names as you can. Blanks may be designated however you wish. Spaces in State names may be ignored. If you think you have the longest list possible, then try to maximize the total number of tiles used as well.
For example, one could start with:
but NEW HAMPSHIRE could not come next unless one of the blanks was used as the 'H' (NEW hAMPSHIRE) since there are only two actual Hs in amongst the tiles.
Here is my personal best so far:
This uses 77 of the tiles.
I will post results as I receive them. Following the notation suggestions will help post any submitted results more quickly.
A Simon Lengyel sent me this list (using 'District Of Columbia'): 12 entries, 91 tiles.
This uses 91 of the tiles.
And omitting D.C.:
This uses 86 of the tiles.
Luke Pebody sent me this list with 13 states:
Dr. Pebody then sent me this follow-up:
There are 9 ways to make 13 state names out of a full scrabble set.
There are 0 ways to make 14.
The following 6 names must appear:
MAINE, TEXAS, KENTUCKY, FLORIDA, GEORGIA, UTAH
The following 13 names are the only others that can appear:
ILLINOIS, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OHIO, IOWA, TENNESSEE, OREGON, VIRGINIA,
COLORADO, MISSOURI, IDAHO, VERMONT, DELAWARE
The 7 of these 13 that appear in the 9 methods are:
Worst (79 tiles)
IDAHO, ILLINOIS, IOWA, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OHIO, VERMONT
Next Worst (81 tiles)
DELAWARE, IDAHO, ILLINOIS, IOWA, OHIO, TENNESSEE, VERMONT
IDAHO, IOWA, MISSOURI, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OREGON, VERMONT
IDAHO, ILLINOIS, IOWA, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OREGON, VERMONT
Better (83 tiles)
DELAWARE, IDAHO, ILLINOIS, IOWA, OREGON, VERMONT and TENNESSEE/NEWJERSEY
Even Better (84 tiles)
DELAWARE, ILLINOIS, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OHIO, OREGON, VERMONT
Nearly Best (85 tiles)
DELAWARE, ILLINOIS, MISSOURI, NEVADA, NEWJERSEY, OHIO, OREGON
Best (86 tiles)
COLORADO, IDAHO, IOWA, NEWJERSEY, TENNESSEE, VERMONT, VIRGINIA
So, it seems we have definitive answers.
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