U.S. History

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Native American Types of Transportation

Native Americans used a wide variety of means of moving around and transporting themselves, and their tribes. The choices depended on the climate and the resources of the area. [more…]

7 Requirements to be a Federally-Recognized Native American Tribe

In order for the United States government to recognize a Native American tribe, the tribe (or group of Native Americans) must meet the following seven requirements: [more…]

Native American History For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Who were the first Native Americans? No one knows, but four theories offer speculation. Native American culture is diverse and varies based on the tribe's culture area, which impacts each tribe's traditional [more…]

10 Events That Defined American Culture

Invention isn’t the only important word to begin with the letter i. Innovation and inspiration also fit the bill. And, of course, important. Here’s a list of ten important innovations or inspirations in [more…]

10 Unfortunate Statements by U.S. Presidents

Here are ten statements that U.S. presidents made before taking office or while they were in office. They didn’t always backtrack or recant, but you gotta think they would’ve just as soon kept quiet. [more…]

The First Americans

The first Americans probably wandered over from Asia about 14,000 years ago, which in geologic terms is an eye blink ago. Over the succeeding four or five millennia, they spread out over the North and [more…]

Nullification and Dirty American Politics

In 1824, a crusty military-man-turned-politician named Andrew Jackson lost a hotly contested and controversial election to John Quincy Adams. In 1828, Jackson avenged the loss after one of the sleaziest [more…]

Early American Civilizations

Although it’s unclear who got here first and when, it’s known that the forerunners of Native Americans were beginning to settle down by about 1000 BC. They cultivated crops, most notably [more…]

The Many Native American Tribes

Although what’s now the United States didn’t have a whole lot of Native Americans compared to the Americas as a whole — maybe 1 million to 1.5 million or so at the time of Christopher Columbus’s arrival [more…]

De-stereotyping the Native Americans

Both historians and Hollywood have often stereotyped pre-Colombian Native Americans as either noble people who lived in constant harmony with nature or mindless knuckleheads who sat around in the dirt [more…]

The Vikings in America

Native Americans got their first look at what trouble was going to look like when Vikings showed up in North America. All Vikings were Norsemen, but not all Norsemen were Vikings. [more…]

The “Failure” of Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451, the son of a weaver. In addition to running a successful mapmaking business with his brother, Bartholomew, Columbus was a first-class sailor. He [more…]

12 Early American Explorers

The following early American explorers sailed across unknown stretches of water in cramped, leaky ships no longer than a tennis court, were provisioned with food that would gag a starving pig, and had [more…]

Native American Slavery

Native American slavery started with Columbus. By his second voyage to Hispaniola, he set up a system, called the encomienda, which amounted to slavery. Under it, a colonist who was given a piece of land [more…]

Countries Who Tried to Colonize the Americas

Spain’s early explorations of the New World gave that country a great head start over its European rivals. Spanish conquerors defeated mighty empires in Mexico and Peru — the Aztecs and Incas. Both empires [more…]

Potential in the New World of the Americas

For most of the 16th century, England was too poor and too timid to do much about the opportunities presented by the opening of two new continents. By 1604, however, when England and Spain signed a tenuous [more…]

The Jamestown Settlement

It’s pretty safe to say that the first permanent English colony in America was put together about as well as a soup sandwich. Those who set out to establish the colony weren’t sure where they were going [more…]

Slavery in Early America

While it was a Dutch ship that brought the first slaves to Virginia, no European nation had a monopoly on the practice. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to raid the African coast for slaves, in [more…]

The Mayflower Compact: A Dutch Pilgrimage

The Pilgrims (actually, they called themselves “the Saints” and everyone else “the Strangers,” and they weren’t dubbed Pilgrims until much later by one of their leaders) were mostly lower-class farmers [more…]

The Massachusetts Bay Colony: A Pure Haven

It’s easy to confuse the Pilgrims and the Puritans. Both groups were moved to journey to America for religious reasons. Both were remarkably intolerant of other people’s religious beliefs. And neither [more…]

3 Colonies That Supported Religious Freedom: Dissidents, Catholics, and Quakers

The Massachusetts and Jamestown colonies were only the beginning. Throughout the rest of the 17th century, English settlers of all kinds moved to America. Some of those didn’t like where they landed — [more…]

Nathaniel Bacon and His Rebellion

When they weren’t fighting with the natives, some colonists weren’t shy about fighting their own governments. One of these was a wealthy Virginian named Nathaniel Bacon. In 1675, troubles between whites [more…]

How Settlers Coped with Native American Troubles

When it came to the Native Americans, English colonists had varying opinions. Some thought they should be treated as pets; others as pests. Some thought the Native Americans should be treated with respect [more…]

America in 1700

The English colonies in America had filled in the gaps between the first two settlements in Virginia and Massachusetts by 1700 and, in fact, had gone beyond them. They now stretched from Maine to South [more…]

The First True World Wars

Eighteenth-century royalty didn’t need much of an excuse to start a war — they fought over everything from who should be the next king of Spain to the lopping off of a sea captain’s ear. Their willingness [more…]

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