The Central United States is sometimes conceived as between the Eastern United States and Western United States as part of a three-region model, roughly coincident with the U.S. Census' definition of the Midwestern United States plus the western and central portions of the U.S. Census' definition of the Southern United States. The Central States are typically considered to consist of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Wisconsin, and Illinois. Sometimes Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, Mississippi, and Alabama are also considered to be Central States.
Almost all of the area is in the Gulf of Mexicodrainage basin, and most of that is in the Mississippi Basin. Small areas near the Great Lakesdrain into the Great Lakes and eventually the St. Lawrence River; the Red River Basinis centered on the North Dakota-Minnesotaborder and drains to Hudson Bay. The Central Time Zoneis the same area plus the Florida Panhandle, minus Ohio, most of Michigan, most of Indiana, westernmost fringes of Great Plainsstates, eastern and northern Kentucky, eastern Tennessee, and El Paso, Texas. Floods have been a problem for the region during the 20th and early-21st century
Census Bureau Divisions with Central in name.
Organizations that need to subdivide the US are free to define a "Central" region to fit their needs.