The American Empire was the one of the two superpower-nations in the world prior to the Sixty Minute War, with Greater China being its main rival. It was the dominant nation of North America and was bordered by Canada to the north. During the War and its subsequent post-apocalyptic aftermath, the American Empire was devastated and depopulated by various nuclear and biological weapons. By the time of the Traction Era, it had become little more than a radioactive wasteland and was commonly referred to as "the Dead Continent". Several relics from the American Empire survived into the Traction Era, including the MEDUSA and ODIN superweapons, and the Tin Book of Anchorage, as well as many pieces of Old-Tech.
The name "empire" possibly a dystopian reference of the US-dominated western hemisphere such as NATO, which is partically imperialism.