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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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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209 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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185 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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142 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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172 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 ...
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71 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

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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158 views

What actions did the KKK take against miscegenation after 1967?

Although the racial attitudes of the (third) KKK are well known, I haven't been able to find much about actions, demonstrations or speeches by the KKK against the repeal of anti-miscegenation laws in ...
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342 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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272 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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454 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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486 views

Spanish-American war from Spain's perspective?

What did the Spanish-American war look like from Spain's perspective? Did the general population support the war? What were the reasons why Spain lost, was the general public aware of these reasons ...
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351 views

When was the last time (if ever) an elector was faithless in US presidential elections?

With regards to the ongoing US presidential elections, I just read this on electoral-vote.com: Could There Be Faithless Electors? Presidential electors are supposed to vote for the person who ...
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372 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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4answers
263 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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1answer
389 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 ...
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163 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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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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1answer
242 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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1answer
248 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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231 views

During 1790-1800, was it legal to pay workers using whiskey?

As is well known, in frontier regions whiskey was regarded as an indispensable necessity to life, health and happiness, at the point that it usually had to substute for specie as a medium of exchange: ...
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3answers
237 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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138 views

When did USA start to help developing countries?

In 2006, the United States government gave $23.53 billion in overseas development assistance. When did these programs start?
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183 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
2k 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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75 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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1answer
119 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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92 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 ...
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1answer
157 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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1answer
103 views

Did James Monroe and James Madison ever disagree? [closed]

I can't seem to find anything that they did butt heads about. Did they ever have any public disagreements that were recorded by history?
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1answer
202 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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315 views

Recommended Reading 19th Century US Settler Daily Life?

At the time of this writing, I am riding in the comfort of an air conditioned minivan, traveling through the deserts of Arizona and California along I-10. I began to think about 19th century settlers ...
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1answer
68 views

Framers and Criminal Voting Rights

At the time of the drafting of the Constitution, who can and cannot vote was left up to the states. Despite leaving it up to the states to decide, did any of the Framers view that criminals, either in ...
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1answer
115 views

How did opinions of France and Britain affect American foreign policy up to 1820?

I'm doing some research on this topic for my American Studies class, and I'm having a little trouble with this. I would appreciate a brief overview of this, or possibly some primary sources for me ...
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92 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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123 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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49 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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326 views

Symbol on utility pole in photograph from 1906

I happened to notice this symbol: on a utility pole in a photograph from 1906. What's the meaning of that symbol?
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1answer
161 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 ...
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1answer
103 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
73 views

When did western medical certification start?

When did medical certification start being a 'thing' in western cultures, ex. among US denizens, the British, etc.? In particular, who (organization, person, etc.) came up with the first standards ...
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1answer
361 views

Why has SACEUR exclusively been an American officer?

After reading this BBC article about the new SACEUR, General Philip Breedlove, United States Air Force, it occurred to me that SACEUR has always been an American officer. Supreme Allied Commander ...
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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
549 views

Why did Jefferson have to 'Stretch the Constitutional Breaking Point' for the Louisiana Purchase?

Because the U.S. Constitution did not explicitly grant the president the power to purchase territory, when the 'Now or Never' moment came to purchase the Louisiana territory, he had 'stretched ...
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1answer
310 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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1answer
119 views

Identification of location and type of bi-plane

Could the location be on the west coast or in Hawaii? 1920s time frame?
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2answers
184 views

Has the USA offered aid to every sovereign nation? [closed]

My history teacher said that the USA has offered aid to every other sovereign nation that has existed the same time at us. He defines aid as being humanitarian, economical, or militaristic. Is this ...
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1answer
58 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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Has Puerto Rico experienced less privileges and autonomy than other US territories?

Puerto Rico is an unincorporated US territory. The US won the island from Spain in the Spanish-American War along with the Philippines and Guam, so it is also referred to as a colonial possession, ...