History & Periods

Antiques of America

We often refer to antiques as Edwardian, Victorian, Georgian, etc. but how do Americans refer to their antiques?
American antiques have well established styles. In the early years, they tended to contrast with more ornate European styles, but eventually came to reflect and influence those across the Atlantic.
American antiques dates Read more

Depression and the New Deal 1930–1939

Roosevelt administration implements economic safeguards to revive U.S. economy
U.S. government expands role as employer of and provider for U.S. citizens
Tensions begin to rise in Europe as Germany once again asserts itself
1930 Smoot-Hawley Tariff raises taxes on almost 20,000 items; some economists argue that tariff worsened Great Depression or that Read more

U.S. Involvement in World War I 1915–1919

Wilson wins reelection on campaign promise of maintaining neutrality, but United States is soon drawn into war raging across Europe
World War I proves to be bloodiest war in world history, often referred to as “The Great War” or “The War to End All Wars”
After World War I, disagreements arise Read more

Progressive Era 1901–1914

Progressives agitate for far-reaching reform in politics, business, poverty relief, and conservation
United States implements aggressive foreign policy through both military actions and corporate investment

1901 Anarchist Leon Czolgosz (pictured) assassinates McKinley; Vice President Teddy Roosevelt becomes 26th president
Platt Amendment effectively turns Cuba into U.S. dependency
Spindle top oil field discovered in Read more

The Gilded Age 1878–1900

Corporations and trusts begin to accumulate large capital reserves, ushering in Era of Big Business
Western frontier rapidly parceled out and populated; Native Americans forced to assimilate and/or relocate
Reconstruction policies leave African Americans behind in South as post–Civil War recovery continues
Development of cities fueled by immigration and rise of business

1878 Read more

Reconstruction 1865–1877

Lincoln, radical Republicans clash over plans for postwar Reconstruction
Union establishes military rule in former Confederacy to restore order, defend ex-slaves
13th Amendment,14th Amendment, and Civil Rights Act of 1866 pass
Railroad expansion facilitates movement between eastern, western United States
Steady waves of settlers displace and attack Native Americans in the West

1865 13th Read more

African Americans in Religion

First known black Baptist church is founded in Sliver Bluff, South Carolina; other congregations soon form in Georgia and Virginia
Lemuel Haynes begins to preach at a Congregational church in Connecticut, making him the first African American minister of a predominantly white congregation
First African American church congregations in the North Read more

African Americans in the Arts

Poet Jupiter Hammon, an ex-slave living in New York, publishes his first poem, “An Evening Thought: Salvation by Christ with Penetential [sic] Cries”
First major African American author and poet Phyllis Wheatley publishes her collection Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral
African Grove Company, the first all–African American acting troupe, Read more

African Americans in Politics

Alexander Twilight becomes the first African American elected to public office when he wins a seat on the Vermont legislature; in 1845, William Leidesdorff becomes the second when he is named sub-consul to Yerba Buena, part of the Mexican territory that would later become San Francisco
Edward G. Walker and Read more

African Americans in Sciences and Professional Fields

Former slave James Derham buys his freedom from his physician slave owner, who trains him as a physician; Derham goes on to open his own medical practice in New Orleans
James Hall becomes the first known African American to graduate from an American college of medicine (Medical College of Maine)
Macon Read more