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Questions tagged [20th-century]

For questions spanning a significant proportion of the 20th century. Questions focused on the latter decades should consider using the contemporary-history tag. Individual tags exist for specific decades.

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Has any music act ever topped the Beatles in popularity?

The Beatles in 1965. Source: Wikipedia Elvis Presley is widely hailed as the King of Rock and Roll, but in 1966 John Lennon said the Beatles were "more popular than Jesus" in a London Evening ...
8
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1answer
244 views

How many pens were used by MacArthur to end the final chapter of World War II and where are they now?

General Douglas MacArthur counter-signs the Japanese instrument of surrender as Supreme Allied Commander aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, September 2, 1945. Standing behind him are Generals ...
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1answer
183 views

When did the last (non-tourist) commercial stagecoach line run in the USA?

Stagecoach at Holladay Express Office, Boise City, Idaho, circa mid-1860s. Source: A Stamp a Day- National Stamp Collecting Month: The Mail Coach Background Across from my office is a small Wells ...
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1answer
283 views

How many Black Panthers were killed in 'justified homicide' that was later overturned?

A few days ago I was in a cafe where I picked up a leaflet on labour disputes which went into some detail about Fred Hampton. He was a African-American activist in the Black Panther Party (BPP), in ...
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80 views

What did Zhang Zuolin say after his train blew up?

Zhang Zuolin was an early 20th century Chinese warlord of Manchuria. He was fatally wounded by the Japanese Army, using a bomb laid beneath tracks where his armoured train travelled over. There is a ...
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2answers
228 views

Who flew the T-38 “Missing Man” formation at the Challenger Memorial service at JSC, 31 January 1986?

President Ronald Reagan at Memorial Service for Challenger Crew. Photo courtesy of NASA On January 31, 1986 I attended the memorial service at Johnson Space Center for the STS-51-L Challenger crew. I ...
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1answer
2k views

In WWI, which countries used prisoners as soldiers?

What happened to prisoners incarcerated for domestic crimes (not war) before and during the outbreak of the Great War? Using a UK report, in 1914 the prison population dropped around 5000, but 11,000 ...
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1answer
4k views

Did the US quarter shrink in size?

I am confused by the size of a current US quarter. It is not a major problem, but it is baffling. It is smaller than a shilling, yet 5 shillings make a crown and 4 quarters make a dollar —...
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2answers
210 views

Was Freud the first to say that Judaism borrowed from Atenism?

Every source I mention seems to attribute this to Freud. Was there an earlier proponent? I realized the question as originally written was horrifically vague. I'm not looking for scholars before ...
7
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1answer
566 views

Did the Soviet Union hand over thousands of Jews to the Nazis in the spirit of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact?

The most recent episode of the Italian documentary TV series Ulisse - Il piacere della scoperta (Ulysses - The pleasure of discovery) covered the deportation of Jews from Italy, and at some point it ...
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1answer
118 views

How long did it take for mail to get to London from New York in 1919?

In an essay I am working on, I am writing letters between two sisters. One lived in New York and the other lived in London during the time of 1919. I need to figure out the amount of time it took for ...
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166 views

Who was the white woman activist (Salisbury, Rhodesia; 1967/68)?

Am reading Moorcraft & McLaughlin, The Rhodesian War, and am wondering about this incident: In 1967 and 1968 the pace of guerrilla activity quickened. The nationalists dabbled in urban ...
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197 views

What is this old dual-disc metal object with a spindle?

While sorting through family artifacts, I found a black metal two-layer disc with a long spindle. One layer (marked "This Side Up") was about 5 1/2 inches in diameter; the other about 4 1/2". The ...
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1answer
384 views

What is the approximate date of this photo?

The photo below is of an (as yet) unidentified (English) family member and is from the London studio of Hermann Ernst. There is nothing printed on the back. The photo is part of a collection, the ...
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2answers
351 views

Why was France's birth rate low from 1800 to WWII?

Inspired by this lemma on Wikipedia as well as a few paragraphs here and there in Piketty's Capital in the 21st century I'm asking the question how the low birth rate in France between 1800 and WWII ...
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2answers
215 views

What was the Catholic Church trying to do in Spain in the 1930s?

Right now I'm trying to learn about Spain's transition to democracy in the 20th century. To start, I'm looking at the civil war that took place in the '30s. And the question I'm trying to answer is: ...
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1answer
94 views

How and when did the border regime change when the USSR broke up?

According to my knowledge, borders between individual SSR's were generally open and consisted just of signs during Soviet times. With the breakup of the union, the problem of border security arose. ...
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1answer
135 views

Was Ezra Pound a descendent of Jews?

I've tried to search the internet for poet's Ezra Pound genealogy, but I only find extreme-right sites... A person with the name Ezra seems to have some relationship to Jewish culture/religion. ...
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1answer
195 views

How were interracial relationships between African-Americans and Latinos treated in Southern states before the Loving decision?

There are two states in the American south that historically had large numbers of both African-Americans and Latinos, as well as laws banning marriage between black people and white people: Texas and ...
5
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1answer
504 views

Was PepsiCo really sixth largest military force?

There are several claims on the internet that for a brief time PepsiCo owned the sixth largest military force in the world. You can read about it, e.g., at Wikipedia. This seems quite fishy to me, so ...
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0answers
212 views

Is it true that the Jewish people signed O instead of X at Ellis Island?

I was trying to understand the etymology and history for the word 'kike'. With discovering some stuff on the Internet. After searching on many sources, I found out that Jewish people on Ellis Island ...
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1answer
179 views

When did passenger ships first have an on board duty-free shop?

According to several sites, the first duty-free shop opened at Shannon Airport in Ireland in 1947, since when duty-free shopping has become an enormous international business even though some airlines ...
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106 views

Why was Wang Zhiming apparently pardoned, unlike other Christian victims of the Cultural Revolution?

Wang Zhiming is a particularly famous Christian martyr of the Cultural Revolution in China – he is one of ten martyrs of the 20th century to have a statue above the Great West Door of Westminster ...
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96 views

How were steam turbines typically manufactured in the interwar period (1918 - 1939)

Steam turbines are large rotating machinery, with many blades, that convert steam power into rotary motion. In the interwar period, 1918 - 1939, they were used principally in power plants and naval ...
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2answers
251 views

Are there any images within the time period of contemporary history (1945 to the present) that had different interpretations by historians?

Or could someone provide me with a certain event that I can search for which will have images with different interpretations? I am currently unable to find any images with keywords such as "different ...
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2answers
2k views

Time span of a decade

Wikipedia says that The 21st century began on January 1, 2001 and will end on December 31, 2100. The first decade of 21st century is the 2000s. Here Wikipedia says that The 2000s was a decade ...
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2answers
197 views

What happened to the compass platform on the Titanic?

Whatever happened to the Compass platform on the Titanic? Was it ever found in the wreck site? I’ve found out what it was used for but no explanation to whether They found any sign of it in the ...
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3answers
158 views

Are there any documented cases where a society was capable of large scale selflessness for the benefit of future generations? [closed]

Are there any documented cases in history where a society has altruistically created or conserved something exclusively for the benefit of next generations at a large scale? An good example of such ...
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1answer
358 views

Are there notable incident(s) where Russia/SU was wrongfully accused by Western powers in the 20th century?

I would like to know incident(s) where SU/Russia was accused to have done something by Western powers where Western historians also came at least now to the conclusion that the accusation was ...
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1answer
137 views

Book recommendation on the Nazis for a (very) advanced reader [closed]

I want to get my history teacher - who has taught me for three years and given a lot of extra help and support - a book. He has been studying the Nazis for several decades and is very knowledgeable, ...
28
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1answer
3k views

Was a passport needed to travel between UK and France in 1972?

In Hitchcock's 1972 film Frenzy (at about the time 00:54:55) a character says: We can get a day trip to France. You don't need a passport. (He is a commoner, no diplomatic status etc, in fact a ...
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1answer
455 views

Who first conceived and developed the acoustic homing torpedo, and when?

Acoustic homing torpedoes did not see action until 1943 with the Falke/T4 from Germany and the Mark 24 Mine from the USA. These torpedoes were passive in that they homed in on the loudest sound that ...
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3answers
6k views

When did FDR announce he was running a 3rd time, and was there any outrage?

When did President Franklin Roosevelt announce he was running again for a 3rd term? And was there any shock or outrage at this? I noticed the Vice President, John Garner, actually ran against FDR in ...
10
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1answer
372 views

In segregated South, would Asian-Americans be treated as “colored” or as whites?

During racial segregation in USA many businesses had signs that either restricted service to a particular race or that directed different races through different entrances. Some examples of this ...
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3answers
297 views

Why was Stalin chosen as the First General Secretary in 1922?

At the 11th Party Congress, Stalin was voted into the position of General Secretary. This was the first time the party had a General Secretary. This was in 1922 Mar/Apr. Why was Stalin chosen? I ...
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0answers
315 views

Are there pictures expressing anti-occupation sentiment directed at British Forces in Germany before 1990?

Researching the history of the British Army of the Rhine it seems difficult to locate pictures of certain aspects regarding the German view of these times and troops. The Rhine Army or Rhine Garrison ...
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134 views

Did New York skyscrapers construction workers take any industrial action over safety concerns?

This video talks about the construction of New York's skyscrapers such as the Chrysler Building and Empire State by the 'roughnecks', a specialized set of construction workers who worked high in the ...
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2answers
236 views

Border controls in Western Europe in the 1970s

I'm interested in how reality of crossing country borders in Western Europe looked like in early 70s. Focusing specifically on traveling by car, train and on foot. I have found a bit of information ...
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0answers
129 views

Why are there two “Smaller & Smaller”s?

So M.C. Escher created a piece of art called "Smaller & Smaller". The problem is, when you look it up, two similar but non-identical pieces of art come up: and The color difference isn't a big ...
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3answers
677 views

Why didn't Japanese attack Soviet Union simultaneously as the Germans? [duplicate]

As everyone knows, the Japanese went south, conquering most of the Pacific and attacking Pearl Harbour. But why didn't the Japanese wait until Hitler went on the eastern campaign (attacking the Soviet ...
3
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2answers
228 views

References to Aspirin in the “Chicago” musical

In the musical "Chicago", in the song "All That Jazz", there are references to Aspirin that I don't understand. I was hoping that someone would be able to provide some historical context. The ...
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1answer
223 views

How was the Washington Naval Treaty enforced?

In view of Pearl Harbor, I would be interested to know how the Washington Naval Treaty was enforced - if at all? - given that this was before the establishment of the UN. Would the the signatories ...
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2answers
218 views

Date this Jubilee Day photo

I participate in a Facebook group about the history of my hometown, Mechanicsburg, PA. We are trying to put a year on the following picture taken on the town’s annual street fair, called Jubilee Day. ...
5
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1answer
256 views

What was the role of the Catholic church with regard to the Holocaust?

I'm wondering how historians look at the role of the Catholic church during world war II with regard to the Holocaust. I've tried to look for reliable sources on the subject but I can't find much. The ...
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1answer
310 views

When did the word “Holodomor” appear?

Holodomor (Голодомор) is a part of the Soviet famine of 1932–33. The events in Ukraine were called "Holodomor", but when did the word appear? Google Books Ngram Viewer shows no mentions of Holodomor ...
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1answer
191 views

Has anyone seen this type of grandfather clock before?

I found this grandfather clock and I was fascinated by its workings. Since this is about history, I'd like to know who made it so I can research the rest. I will upload four pictures of it. First ...
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3answers
500 views

What was the context of Queen Juliana's “I can't understand it” quote?

I came across a quotation in that piqued my interest. I can't understand it. I can't even understand the people who can understand it. — Queen Juliana of the Netherlands. I'd like to know ...
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1answer
330 views

What did Murder, Inc call itself?

My understanding is that the "Murder, Inc" moniker was invented by the media, and the actual organization never used that name.
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3answers
333 views

What kind of heating did Moscow have in the early Soviet Union (1917 - 1930)?

I would like to know what kind of residential heating was prevalent in Moscow in the time period around 1917 - 1930. What kind of fuel was used? Did they have district heating back then? Otherwise ...
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1answer
892 views

Handheld music player in the 1890s?

Perusing this gallery of candid photos from 1890s Oslo, Norway, by Carl Størmer (1872-1957), again I found such a curious image, yet was unable to verify the existence of any portable music player ...