American History

The history of the U.S. started with the arrival of Native Americans in North America around 15,000 BC. Numerous indigenous cultures formed, and many disappeared in the 1500s. The arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492 started the European colonization of the Americas. Most colonies were formed after 1600. By the 1760s, the thirteen British colonies contained 2.5 million people along the Atlantic Coast east of the Appalachian Mountains. After defeating France, the British government imposed a series of taxes, including the Stamp Act of 1765, rejecting the colonists' constitutional argument that new taxes needed their approval. Resistance to these taxes, especially the Boston Tea Party in 1773, led to Parliament issuing punitive laws designed to end self-government in Massachusetts. Armed conflict began in 1775 and the following year, it won independence. A Constitution that was adopted in 1789, and in 1791, a Bill of Rights was added. In 1803, the Louisiana Purchase doubled its size. A second and final war with Britain in 1812, solidified national pride.

Using manifest destiny, U.S. territory expanded to the Pacific Coast. Westward expansion was driven by a quest for inexpensive land for farmers and slave owners. The expansion of slavery was increasingly controversial and fueled political and constitutional battles, which were resolved by compromises. Slavery was abolished in all states north of the Mason–Dixon line by 1804, but the South continued to profit from the institution, mostly from cotton production. In 1861, Southern slave states rebelled and created the Confederacy, leading to the Civil War. Defeat of the Confederates in 1865 led to the impoverishment of the South and the abolition of slavery. In the Reconstruction era following the war, legal and voting rights were extended to freed slaves. However, in 1877, white Democrats regained their power in the South, often by paramilitary suppression of voting They passed Jim Crow laws to maintain white supremacy, as well as new disenfranchising state constitutions that prevented most African Americans and many Poor Whites from voting. This continued until the gains of the civil rights movement in the 1960s and the passage of federal legislation to enforce uniform constitutional rights for all citizens. (Text adapted from Wikipedia, cropped flag from the City of Grafton, IL.)

Legacy Stories from the Americans All Heritage Honor Roll

We are pleased to host and share these legacy stories created by honorees’ family, friends and associates. They, like us, appreciate that heritage and culture are an integral part of our nation's social fabric and want to help students participate effectively in our nation's economy, workforce and democracy.

Language
State
Last Name of Individual
First Name of Individual
Group name

Civil War: Beauvoir--The Jefferson Davis Home & Presidential Library Mississippi (February 19, 1879 - ?) American History, Civil War, Confederate, Presidential Library,

Throughout the years, Beauvoir has boasted a long and grand literary tradition. From the accomplished writing skills of those who lived there to the extensive library collections that have been housed on the grounds, Beauvoir has a great history of libraries. Of course, Sarah Dorsey, Jefferson Davis, his daughter Winnie, his wife Varina, and even some veterans like Prentiss Ingraham were all successful in their writing ventures.

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum California (November 21, 1988 - ?) Historic Building, American History, Simi Valley

At the groundbreaking ceremony for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, held on November 21, 1988, President Reagan proclaimed, “But I believe that scholars of good will . . . will judge our efforts well. But as for us, at present, we can only say this: we have done our best and we pray it has been enough.” At its conception, the future Reagan Library was faced with three major questions . . . 

Civil War: Fifty-Fourth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment, 54th Massachusetts (March 13, 1863 - August 4, 1865) Carney, Glory, Hallowell, Medal of Honor, Military, Shaw, Fort Wagner

On January 26, 1863, Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton authorized Massachusetts Governor John Albion. Andrew to create volunteer companies of artillery "for duty in the forts of Massachusetts and elsewhere, and such corps of infantry for the volunteer military service as he may find convenient.

Timeline of the Civil War: Background and Causes South Carolina (April 12, 1961 - April 9, 1865) Union, Confederacy, slavery, Lincoln, Douglas, Brown, Stowe, Taney, Scott, succession, Tubman, Andersonville, Pennington, Truth, Davis, Fifty-Fourth, 54th

The Civil War is one of the most complex, studied and written about events in U.S. history and was fought from April 12, 1861 to April 9, 1865. Although many theories have been considered, it is now generally agreed that the main cause of the conflict was the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of Black people.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: Background and Major Events Maryland (c.1600 - December 31, 2014) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a struggle for different groups—especially Native Americans and African Americans. The Europeans who set up trade and settlements in the Americas, beginning with Columbus’ 1492voyage, saw slaves as an indispensable source of labor. African slavery was already part of the social construct and economy of Spain and Portugal and spreading to other parts of Europe.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: 1789 to 1920 Maryland (January 1, 1789 - December 31, 1920) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: 1925 to 1962 Maryland (January 1, 1925 - December 31, 1962) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: 1963 to 1968 Maryland (January 1, 1963 - December 31, 1968) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: 1969 to 2014 Maryland (January 1, 1969 - December 31, 2014) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of the Civil War: Abolition and the Underground Railroad, 1700 to 1865, Part 1 Maryland (January 1, 1700 - December 31, 1865) Abolition, African American, American History, Antislavery, Civil Rights, Constitutional Amendments, Discrimination, Desegregation, Education, Equality, Negro, Plessy, Public Laws, Quaker, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Underground Railroad, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of the Civil War: Abolition and the Underground Railroad, 1700 to 1865, Part 2 Maryland (January 1, 1700 - December 31, 1865) Abolition, African American, American History, Antislavery, Civil Rights, Constitutional Amendments, Discrimination, Desegregation, Education, Equality, Negro, Plessy, Public Laws, Quaker, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Underground Railroad, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Timeline of Events That Helped Shape Our Nation: The Peopling of America Maryland (January 1, 1600 - December 31, 1991) American History, Asian, Hispanic, Mexican, Native American, Puerto Rican, World History,

Traditionally, timelines focus on dates from only one nation, cultural group or perspective. This 414-page timeline, however, documents a confluence of peoples, cultures and ideologies that make up United States history. The emphasis is on broader periods, trends and cultural aspects of many groups while recognizing the significant role one individual or small group can play in society.

Timelines and Legacy Stories of the Civil Rights Movement: Summary (January 1, 1600 - December 31, 2014)

Americans All provides a free tool—our Heritage Honor Roll—to help generate momentum for the cause of equal civil rights. Our informative and inclusive website adds historical data to provide context for individual stories. We encourage the use of annotated timelines that enable users to easily see—and compare—events in chronological order. And, without any background, the significance of a story cannot be fully understood or appreciated.

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1850-1868 (January 1, 1850 - December 31, 1868) Anthony, Association, Blackwell, Bloomer, Clark, Court, Davis, Douglass, Elections, Equal Rights, Foster, Garrison, Male, Property, Severance, Smith, Stanton, Stone, Stowe, Truth, Vineland

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1869-1873 Maryland (January 1, 1869 - December 31, 1873) AERA, African, Anti-Suffragism, Association, Attorney, AWSA, Constitutional, Convention, Equal Rights, 15th Amendment, House, Jurors, Legislation, Legislature, Men, NWSA, States, Supreme Court, Territory, Vote, Woman’s Journal

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Lucian Adams Texas (October 26, 1922 - March 31, 2003) Medal of Honor Recipient, World War II, Veteran, Hispanic

Lucian Adams, Medal of Honor recipient and son of Lucian Adams, Sr., and Rosa (Ramírez) Adams, was born in Port Arthur, Texas, on October 26, 1922. The Adams family consisted of nine brothers and three sisters. Eight of his brothers served in World War II, and all returned home safe after the war. Lucian attended schools in Port Arthur . . . but dropped out of high school to help support his family.

Jane Addams Illinois (September 6, 1860 - May 21, 1935) Social Worker, Settlement House Founder, Author

Jane Addams received national recognition as a feminist, a social worker and the founder of the settlement house movement. She was born in Cedarville, Illinois, the eighth of nine children. Her father was a successful miller as well as a state senator and an officer in the Civil War.

Susan B. Anthony Massachusetts (c.1820 - March 13, 1906) Anti-Slavery, Author, Editor, ICW, Lobbyist, NAWSA, Nineteenth Amendment, Organizer, Property Rights, Quaker, Revolution-Newspaper, Rochester, Seneca Falls, Speaker, Suffragist, Teacher, Temperance, Women’s Suffrage, Voting, Voting Rights

Susan B. Anthony is perhaps the most widely known suffragist of her generation and has become an icon of the woman’s suffrage movement. She traveled the country to give speeches, circulate petitions, and organize local women’s rights organizations. Her experience with the teacher’s union, temperance, and antislavery reforms, and her Quaker upbringing, laid fertile ground for a career in women’s rights reform to grow. The career would begin with an introduction to Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

Mollie Arline Kirkland Bailey Texas (November 1844 - October 2, 1918) Circus Musician, Singer, War-Time Nurse, Philanthropist

Mollie Bailey, "Circus Queen of the Southwest," the daughter of William and Mary Arline Kirkland, was born on a plantation near Mobile, Alabama. Sources differ regarding her birthdate. As a young woman, she eloped with James A. (Gus) Bailey, who played the cornet in his father's circus band and was married in March 1858. With Mollie's sister Fanny and Gus's brother Alfred, the young couple formed the Bailey Family Troupe . . .

Commodore John Barry Pennsylvania (March 25, 1745 - September 12, 1803) Irish, Ireland, U.S. Navy First Flag Officer, Politician, Continental Congress

September 13th is Commodore John Barry Day. It is not a new commemorative day, for it has been commemorated on the American national calendar more than once. There were even statues erected in his honor back in the days when Americans remembered with gratitude the contributions of this dedicated man. Today, how many remember his deeds?