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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What steps did President Herbert Hoover take to reduce unemployment during the Great Depression?

I am mainly trying to remember the name that was given to the jobs that he created that were rendered 'worthless', and paid a very low wage. Such examples were scaring away pigeons and selling apples. ...
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103 views

Did the break up of AT & T in 1984 lead to technological innovation?

Are there examples of technologies developed since 1984 that would not have been likely to be developed had the Bell system stayed intact rather than being broken up by the US government? UPDT: To ...
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127 views

How big was the percentage of white people in the USA who were not against granting the blacks equal rights?

How big was the percentage of white people in the USA who were not against granting the blacks equal rights at the time when the blacks finally got the equality of rights (which I think was in 1964). ...
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165 views

Why didn't Ronald Reagan become Republican candidate for the President of the USA in 1976?

I'd really like to know, how did it happen that Ronald Reagan lost the Republican Party presidential primaries in 1976, against Gerald Ford. It's easier for me to understand that he could fail in the ...
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171 views

What coin denominations were used in the US before Dollars and Cents?

In Thomas Jefferson's proposal for a decimal currency, he describes the status quo as: The [cent] will differ little from the copper of the four Eastern States, which is 1/108 of a dollar; still ...
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196 views

Upper-class male cohabitation in mid-19th century USA

James Buchanan is often considered to be the first (and only so far?) gay American president. The major piece of evidence for this (at least according to wikipedia and some popular articles on this ...
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76 views

Were NC, IL, and VA's latest concurrent constitutions' effective dates coincidental?

The latest Constitutions of North Carolina, Illinois, and Virginia all became effective on the same day (July 1, 1971). Was this coincidental, or was there some coordination going on? If so, why did ...
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94 views

How many firearms were owned by civilian population between 1836 and 1912 in USA?

How many firearms in total were owned by civilian population between 1836 and 1912 in USA (cumulatively, not simultaneously)? The timeframe is what I would consider "Old West" timeframe, but starting ...
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651 views

Were there reasons for Japan to go to war with US aside from US owning Philippines?

Right after the Spanish-American War in 1898, the US acquired the Philippines from Spain. At that time, local leaders desired Philippines independence. The Philippines-American War was fought around ...
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255 views

Does US law permit spending taxpayers' money to support foreign political parties?

Here is a video, showing a number of Russian opposition activists visiting U.S. embassy before Russian presidential elections: ...
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273 views

Did people near antebellum Asheville N.C. own slaves?

In 'The Hills Beyond' T. Wolfe, a native of Asheville, suggest that in many mountain counties of the Appalachia people had not owned slaves and that blacks were unknown before the civil war. Is the ...
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309 views

Did Great Britain benefit economically from the loss of America?

I have been told by many acquaintances that the loss of the thirteen colonies actually BENEFITED the UK. Their claim is that the UK no longer had to pay for the colonies' defence and administration ...
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156 views

Have there been gay riots in the US?

I was wondering has there ever been uprisings in the history of the US that were for gay rights or started by gay people?
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289 views

Did Ted Kennedy turn to the Soviet Union for help winning an election?

Reading an interesting article in Forbes, I was dumbfounded by the idea that Ted Kennedy might have sought out Yuri Andropov's help to run for president against Ronald Reagan in 1984. A relevant ...
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2k views

Evolution of United States' world role? [closed]

This is a pretty big and general question, but I'm interested to hear some opinions from fellow StackExchangians: Over the 20th century, how did the United States evolve into being a world ...
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4answers
232 views

What precipitated the rise of social safety nets in the United States?

In the United States we received changes in the social safety net over the past century with the big changes coming in the form of social security and medicaid/medicate as well as other programs. The ...
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170 views

During World War II, in the U.S., were diapers available?

As is well known, during World War II many consumer goods became difficult to find and with regard to the situation in the United States, after some searches, I observed that, among others: U.S. ...
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136 views

Has anyone ever been punished for Project MK-ULTRA?

So I've been looking into what MK-ULTRA is, and recently a scary question has came to mind. That question being, has anyone been punished for the events of MK-ULTRA? By punished, I don't mean a slap ...
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347 views

Was the death toll in the atomic bombing of Japanese territory greater than was expected by the US?

It is known that the US tried to justify their atomic bombing of Japanese cities by claiming they were aimed at military targets such as a plant and a bridge. Yet the bombs destroyed much more than ...
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383 views

What were the key differences between United States' and Indian revolutions?

The Thirteen Colonies and Indian subcontinent were two of the most significant colonies of the British Empire, yet the former was able to gain independence via a rebellion relatively early on, whilst ...
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185 views

Did any of the US States ever attempt to secede, aside from American Civil War times?

Reading about the non-governmental organizations in support of the Texas secession movement, I've started to think if there were any States where such movements achieved something more. My questions ...
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99 views

When did Harvard give its last entrance exam?

I saw this article pointing out how different college admissions used to be, pre World War II. Entrance exams are still used around the world today but it seems like no American universities give out ...
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209 views

Did liberalism in the USA degenerate into something more totalitarian than liberal? [closed]

I'm not US resident, so that's a real question rather than pre-election discussion. Where I live liberalism never seriously changed meaning in public debate (yet) - it is still more or less faithul ...
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112 views

How many acres per person were needed for the early American settlers vs. the native Americans?

Clearly the lifestyle of the native peoples of North America was less intensive than that of the European settlers and thus required more land per person. However, theirs was not exclusively a ...
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356 views

What is the meaning behind Thomas Nast's political cartoon “Compromise--Indeed!”?

I'm struggling even with this explaination here: http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/harp/0127.html Who is holding the gun? That website explains: Dominating this picture is the ...
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69 views

President proposes bills: provenance

The President of the United States sends proposed bills to members of Congress, that they may introduce the bills on his behalf. There's no provision for this in the Constitution (AFAICT). What was ...
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104 views

Why are lower court jurists, judges, and supreme court jurists, justices?

I cannot find any information explaining why judges that sit on a Supreme Court are referred to as "justices," and judges that sit on a lower court are "judges." Everything I've found seems to ...
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80 views

Were there interstate tariffs before the US Constitution (1789)?

I've heard many times that the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution was (in part) designed to end tariffs between the thirteen states. Now that I'm trying to learn about those tariffs, I'm having a ...
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162 views

Why did Michigan abolish capital punishment so early?

The US state of Michigan abolished the death penalty in 1846, and according to Wikipedia, was the first English-speaking government in the world to do so; the death penalty has not been reinstated ...
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1answer
79 views

Did the American Founders Debate on the Relative Size of the Government?

It seems to me that the concern with the size of government, specifically that it's too large and therefore complex, is a relatively modern concern in American politics. I would assume that given the ...
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1k views

How did the “Forty Niners” get to California in 1849?

How did the "Forty Niners" get to California in 1849? In 1849, the Panama Canal would not have been built for over 50 years, meaning that ships from the U.S. east coast would have had to sail all the ...
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1answer
169 views

What differences led to Technicolor becoming the dominant color filming technology in Hollywood?

Apparently another technology, Kinemacolor, was invented first in the UK, but it never caught on in Hollywood. Kinemacolor was expensive, and had some other glitches involved, but the fact that it was ...
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123 views

Where were the Mormons going?

From what I've heard, when the Mormons left Illinois in 1846 they hadn't decided where exactly they were going to settle. Did they have some choices they were looking at? Did they have a route they ...
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62 views

First eastbound transcontinental flight departed from…?

On Feb. 8th, 1912, the first eastbound US transcontinental flight landed in Jacksonville, FL. After several Google searches, I can't find anything that says where the flight departed from. So where ...
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84 views

Pre-1901/1902 US Presidential Protection

I've spent a little while looking around online about the origins of US Presidential protection - while it has become apparent that the US Secret Service became officially responsible for Presidential ...
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112 views

What was done to prevent electoral fraud in Texas following the controversial 1948 election?

In his second attempt at the Senate in 1948, Lyndon Johnson narrowly defeated Coke Stevenson in the Democratic primary when a box with 202 votes, largely in favour of LBJ, was found late in the ...
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1answer
47 views

Past US invovlement in Iran and Iraq

If I remember correctly that the U.S did switch sides between sides supporting both Iraq and Iran at some point due to some sort of Cold War Reason. So my question is did the U.S. back empowerment of ...
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151 views

Why did the the US House of Representatives stop reading George Washington's farewell address on his birthday?

In January 1862, during the American Civil War, thousands of Philadelphia residents signed a petition requesting the Congress to commemorate the 130th anniversary of Washington's birth by reading ...
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97 views

Mexicans in the US from the Mexican period

What was the population of the areas annexed by the US from Mexico in the 1840s? Basically, "Texas," "California" and the area in between?
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1answer
1k views

How many illegal aliens were deported under “Operation Wetback”?

There are all kinds of numbers surrounding Operation Wetback. My understanding is the vast majority left voluntarily. Is there any official number on the amount of illegal aliens that were actually ...
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1answer
294 views

The Great Compromise, is there analysis on the outcome?

I'm doing a research about the Great Compromise and how it originated from the Virginia and the New Jersey Plan. Has there been any analysis on which side got the better part of the compromise. (The ...
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125 views

Was there really a labor shortage in the USA until 1970?

After watching several video lectures made by Richard D. Wolff I noticed he frequently draws historical events as evidence to base his arguments on. One thing he mentions frequently (in several ...
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1answer
50 views

Did Thomas Paine really give up book royalties?

I heard on a podcast the claim that Thomas Paine apparently gave up on his book rights so that his writings would circulate more widely. However, I tried to find sources for this claim but was unable ...
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1answer
1k views

What is the definitive biography of James Madison?

I'm in the early stages of a project whereby I want to read a biography of each US President. Can you point me towards the best such biography on James Madison? I'd like something that covers his ...
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124 views

Is one of the causes behind the cultural atmosphere surrounding the Scopes trial, and the concepts about family, “children are the future”? [closed]

To start, I noticed that during the peak of the American eugenics movement (1920-1929) that anti-evolutionary bills and eugenical bills were being passed in the same 37 states (well, just about), ...
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2answers
172 views

How significant was the US military role during the NATO campaign in Libya?

The NATO campaign in Libya was started by the UK and France, and the US was later also involved. How significant and vital was the US assistance in this campaign? Edit: I am primarily interested in ...
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2answers
328 views

What made Washington DC “dominate” politics in the USA?

Through history what role did Washington, DC play to become important and influence the US political system, and did it change its influence with time?
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3answers
1k views

Can anyone explain why a wreck of a battleship lies in the Nevada desert?

Can anyone explain the reason why a wreck of a battleship lies in the Nevada desert as it is represented in the picture above?
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203 views

Why is the Spanish-American War not called the Spanish-Cuban-American War?

Cuba was at war with Spain since 2/24/1895. In fact, it was the third war against Spain for their independence. US arrived to the war in 1898, after the Maine's explosion. Very wise when Cubans had ...
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296 views

Why is such a large percentage of Jewish population worldwide in USA

Close to 50% of all the Jews worldwide reside in USA. What were the main historical events and trends that contributed to such a distribution? A good answer should include both demographics and ...