The United States of America is a nation-state stretching across North America between Canada and Mexico, plus Alaska in the continent's northwest, the mid-Pacific archipelago of Hawaii and several territories in the Pacific & Caribbean. Founded by European émigrés rebelling from British control in ...

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8
votes
2answers
205 views

Did the U.S. actively encourage discord between the Soviets and Chinese?

According to historian Lorenz M. Lüthi, one of the defining events of the Cold War, the Sino-Soviet split (1960 to 1989) was principally fueled by Mao's interpretation of Communist ideology and his ...
11
votes
2answers
815 views
8
votes
1answer
304 views

How common was it for 19th century Americans to visit Europe?

According to this article, in 2009, around 13 million people from the United States travelled overseas, of which 35% visited Europe. Given the United States' population of 320 million, we can estimate ...
3
votes
3answers
464 views

Is this Brzezinski quote real?

Various Russian websites attribute to Brzezinski the following quote: The new world order under U.S. hegemony was created against Russia at the expense of Russia and on the ruins of Russia. I ...
-1
votes
1answer
138 views

Why did many US military designs start with letter M? [closed]

Many US military design start with M, e.g tank m1, rifle m1, helmet m1, m16,...? It seems no other country has such a thing
3
votes
1answer
185 views

Why was California admitted as one big state rather than split up?

In this answer, Mark points out that when California was admitted to the Union as a free state, that changed the balance between free and slave states, leading to the Compromise of 1850. Why indeed, ...
8
votes
1answer
356 views

What percentage of men, ages 18 to 35, from the northern states served in the Union Army?

In my genealogy research, I can assume with some certainty that if a white southern family had sons born between 1835 and 1846 there is a pretty good chance that all of them will have served in the ...
0
votes
2answers
239 views

Cult related law made in US

Was there some law formed in US after Jonestown mass suicide, regarding religious or such kind of clique/sect/cabals? or what actions were taken regarding limiting and monitoring cult activities by US ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

What was the last public school to desegregate in the US? And when?

What was the last public school to desegregate in the United States? What was the date of completion for that schools desegregation?
1
vote
1answer
272 views

How did Asian Americans manage to become richer than an average American? [closed]

By "richer" I mean higher median income. Large-scale immigration of Asians to the United States began in the 19th century. In the beginning, most of them were poorer than an average American. ...
6
votes
2answers
189 views

Were labor shortages ever a problem for the railroads in the Old West?

Many different rail lines were built in the western United States from the 1850s onwards. Was construction ever delayed/canceled due to difficulty in finding workers, or due to workers leaving the ...
1
vote
1answer
208 views

How did Pocahontas die?

The Wikipedia says the following about the death of Pocahantas: In March 1617, Rolfe and Pocahontas boarded a ship to return to Virginia; the ship had only sailed as far as Gravesend on the ...
10
votes
2answers
233 views

The effect of the Panic of 1837 on financial/banking policy

Were there any direct or immediate financial/banking policies made because of this recession? I've read that a combination of factors helped get America out of the Panic, but it never mentioned a ...
3
votes
2answers
241 views

Was “the modern cocktail” intended to mask the foul taste of Prohibition-era liquor?

I have long suspected that what we know today as a "cocktail" was invented to mask the taste of bad liquor. Indeed I've found several unsupported assertions to this effect online, generally pointing ...
-3
votes
2answers
112 views

Were Jefferson and Madison Jacksonians?

Were Thomas Jefferson and James Madison Jacksonians? They were founders of the Republican or Democratic-Republican Party, and many Republicans left the party to support Jackson and then found the ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

How did New York become the financial hub of America?

Why did New York become the financial hub of America, rather than one of the other big cities?
4
votes
3answers
271 views

Why did Thomas Jefferson almost lose the 1800 presidential election to Aaron Burr?

As the question asks, why did Thomas Jefferson struggle to win the 1800 presidential election against somebody like Aaron Burr? I would think that, even in his time, Jefferson would have been ...
4
votes
1answer
920 views

What is the death toll attributed to US internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII?

We know that Spanish internment camps in Cuba at the start of 20th century were pretty horrific in terms of death toll. What was the death toll attributed to US internment camps for ...
31
votes
15answers
11k views

Was the secession of the Confederate states illegal?

Putting aside their reasons for wanting to do so and all the emotional responses they would provoke, was the secession of states from the Union to eventually form the Confederacy an illegal act in ...
3
votes
3answers
416 views

Why did America not know about Soviet espionage in manhattan project

I was watching PBS documentary Behind Closed doors. According to that documentary Churchill and Roosevelt were not really sure if Stalin really understood about 'the new kind of weapon' when they ...
4
votes
2answers
113 views

What was the American response to the Sino-Soviet border conflict? [closed]

In 1969, detente with either the PRC or USSR lay in the future. All three countries were hostile towards one another. Was the USA pleased its two rivals were tearing lumps out of each other, or were ...
29
votes
7answers
15k views

When and how did the USA and the UK become allies?

So, you may remember that the United States and Great Britain had a minor spat in 1776, which shall we say, did not put them on the friendliest of terms. In 1812, while Britain was focused on its war ...
11
votes
6answers
15k views

Why have officers in the U.S. army tended to “top out” at the level of Major?

In the U.S. army, something like 75%-80% of newly-commissioned Second Lieutenants are promoted to First Lieutenant (around age 25), perhaps 75%-80% of First Lieutenants are promoted to Captain (ages ...
4
votes
1answer
204 views

How historically accurate was the movie “Charlie Wilson's War”? [closed]

I am watching, and really enjoying, the movie, "Charlie Wilson's War". How historically accurate is this movie? Did Charlie Wilson play as big as role as is portrayed? Is the movie accurate ...
5
votes
1answer
141 views

What was the typical range of travel of a Pennsylvanian resident for everyday life in the late 18th early 19th Century Pennsylvania?

How much traveling did a typical Pennsylvanian resident do for everyday life in the late 18th early 19th Century (1775-1825) Pennsylvania and what was the 'typical' range (in miles) from their home ...
5
votes
1answer
518 views

What was the age of majority in 1900 United States?

What was the age of majority in 1900, in the United States? For women and for men? I am not asking about the age of consent. The age of majority is the chronological moment when minors cease to ...
8
votes
3answers
310 views

Why didn't Henry A. Wallace become President in 1945?

Henry A. Wallace was Roosevelt's vice-president during WWII. Shortly before Roosevelt's death (82 days) following a slow decline in health, the Conservative wing of the Democratic Party started an ...
6
votes
1answer
272 views

Why did the Italians (and to some extent Jewish & Irish) dominate organized crime in the US in the 20th century?

Immigrants of a great many nationalities came to American shores, so why was it the Italians who reached such elaborate levels of criminal organization? (The Jewish & Irish seem to have come in ...
10
votes
1answer
189 views

When did the First Barbary War start?

I am reading about the First Barbary War from both Swedish and American perspective. I have what I believe to be a very reliable source in Swedish, and it says that the Pascha of Tripoli declared war ...
5
votes
1answer
245 views

Why did J. Edgar Hoover publicly deny the existence of the Mafia for so long?

According to Wikipedia, Hoover denied or ignored the existence of the Mafia as a criminal organization until the Apalachin Meeting in late 1957, when it became impossible to ignore. What good did ...
4
votes
2answers
607 views

Did the 'founding fathers' of the United States see Oliver Cromwell as a role model?

Did they like Oliver Cromwell, who founded a republic after a dispute about taxes led to the overthrow of a king, or did they see him as a usurping Caesar who destroyed a republic and became a tyrant? ...
3
votes
1answer
267 views

When did abolition of property qualifications for voting begin in the USA?

I understand that voting qualifications in the USA are a state matter and this didn't all happen in one blow. But which states were the first and last to abolish property qualifications for voting? ...
12
votes
2answers
863 views

When did navies stop giving out a drink ration to their sailors?

I seem to remember that the British Navy, and the US Navy maybe, used to give out a ration of alcohol to sailors each day. When did this practice stop, and why?
25
votes
2answers
5k views

Why did the French sell Louisiana?

Why did an imperialistic country like France (at that time) sell a territory so large for so cheap? Was it an important region at the time? I heard that the port of New Orleans was particularly ...
3
votes
1answer
259 views

Why did textile mill owners during the industrial revolution keep their factory windows closed?

This is an excerpt from Harbinger, published in 1846 on the working conditions of mills in Lowell, MA and Manchester, NH: The atmosphere of such a room cannot of course be pure; on the contrary it ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Where did Southern Fried Chicken come from?

Wikipedia claims origins both in Scottish and West African cuisine. The problem I have with that is that the story I tend to see about the Scots-Irish who immigrated to North America is that they ...
8
votes
0answers
59 views

Why did Thomas Hendricks win the majority of Horace Greeley's electoral votes in 1872?

In researching my answer to Can electors "flip the ticket?", I re-examined the results of the election of 1872. As stated in that answer, 1872 was an interesting election, not for the result (Grant ...
6
votes
1answer
215 views

How were 19th century American diplomats paid?

I just came across this line in H.W. Brands' Andrew Jackson biography, explaining why Jackson was initially uninterested in the presidency: "The pay was good, but the expenses of the office ate up the ...
3
votes
3answers
761 views

Why did George H. W. Bush select Dan Quayle as his running mate in 1988?

I've just been revisiting some quotes from Dan Qualyle. For example: I believe we are on an irreversible trend toward more freedom and democracy – but that could change. and We are ready ...
1
vote
2answers
84 views

which faction 'won' elections to the continental congress?

I know there weren't modern day political parties, but what were the issues and major groupings of the three continental congresses? When the congress voted on something, were any 'party lines' ...
0
votes
1answer
327 views

Why were the Thirteen Colonies more successful, both economically and socially, than other colonies? [closed]

The Thirteen Colonies had an incredibly rocky start, running out of food and surrounded by Indian tribes which were not pacified until much later. Yet 200 years later, the population in the colonies ...
9
votes
1answer
322 views

Did Ben Franklin actually make any tofu?

It is well documented that Franklin was interested in tofu, which he called a sort of cheese made from beans, and he got a recipe for making it that he sent on to others. But no source that I have ...
6
votes
1answer
136 views

Who invented and marketed the first “clip on” headphones?

Headphone style terminology seems dodgy at best, but I'm trying to determine what company first sold this style of headphone in the US: I've seen them variously described as "on the ear," "clip on" ...
16
votes
2answers
21k views

Why did the Federalist party collapse?

The Federalist Party in the United States was a significant political force during the early years of the United States' history. Wikipedia doesn't really cite reasons why the party declined and ...
10
votes
1answer
244 views

What was the third best-selling book in the antebellum US?

I always hear that Uncle Tom's Cabin was the best-selling novel in antebellum America and the second best-selling book overall. The Bible, of course, was number one. Here's an insanely detailed ...
-3
votes
1answer
154 views

What major historical event opened the door to the passage of a homesteading bill? [closed]

The Homestead Acts were a series of laws enacted in the USA, that gave the homesteader ownership of portions of various specified tracts of federally owned lands for little or no cost. The first of ...
1
vote
0answers
34 views

annual historical series [closed]

There is an russian historical series Namedni 1961-1991 Nasha Era by Leonid Parfenov. Every episode is dedicated to a particular year (e.g. 1971). In every episode there are "events, people, phenomena ...
5
votes
0answers
145 views

What were the FBI's motives for wanting to discredit MLK?

J. Edgar Hoover's FBI had a vendetta against Martin Luther King, Jr. They wiretapped him, threatened to expose his sexual misconduct, accused him of Communist sympathies, and even went so far as to ...
5
votes
1answer
576 views

What degree of choice did slaves have over their sexual autonomy?

What degree of choice did chattel slaves in the United States of America1have over their sexual autonomy? Was this codified in any law? 1. Assuming scope is the USA, given the source of the Roots TV ...
7
votes
1answer
284 views

Was slavery really on the way out in the antebellum USA?

Gail Jarvis, in an encomium to the Dunning School writes: William A. Dunning fervently opposed slavery but his reading of the trends of the times led him to the conclusion that the institution ...