Image of Napoleon Bonaparte during the french revolution
European History

Napoleon and the French Revolution

October 12, 2017

When the French Revolution came, Napoleon was ready. He got as much military leave time as he could get, and he plunged into revolutionary politics in Corsica. The story of Napoleon and the French Revolution defines the man who would rise to power as one of the most influential leaders of the 19th century. […]

Conestoga Wagon displayed at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution (Image: Kevin Burkett from Philadelphia, Pa/Public domain)
American History

The Conestoga Wagon: The Road Westward

September 6, 2017

Conestoga wagons originated in the mid-1700s, near Lancaster, Pennsylvania and the Conestoga River. They were used to carry people and goods westward and ultimately paved the way for modern highways like U.S. Route 40. […]

Postcard of the original star spangled banner
American History

The Star-Spangled Banner: Stitch by Stitch

September 4, 2017

The star-spangled banner tells the story of how our fledgling country was in peril in 1814; how the defense of a small fort in Baltimore gave heart to a people; and how we have defined, loved, and almost destroyed, and saved a national treasure. […]

space shuttle Discovery's orbiter tribute (Image: By NASA/Amy Lombardo)
American History

Project Mercury, a Chimp, and the Moon: The Cold War in Space

August 31, 2017

On October 4, 1957, the Soviets launched Sputnik I putting pressure on the United States space program as the cold war played out in space. The Mercury Seven was a group of test pilots recruited as the first American astronauts. Before launching a human into space, NASA successfully sent Ham, a chimpanzee, into orbit and assured his safe return. NASA and the United States were now ready to grow their space program to the moon and beyond. […]

Alexander Hamilton portrait on a ten dollar bill
American History

Alexander Hamilton: His Ideal Republic

August 24, 2017

Alexander Hamilton believed the most natural form of government was a republic in which everyone would have the freedom to exercise their natural rights, but his childhood in the West Indies taught him that some may be excluded. […]

American Bison (Image: Nagel Photography/Shutterstock)
American History

American Bison: A Story of Near Extinction and Conservation

July 26, 2017

With the American bison nearing extinction, William Temple Hornaday, a Smithsonian taxidermist, took it upon himself to lead a conservation effort to save the buffalo. His pioneering efforts led to the founding of the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. […]

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