image of Benjamin Franklin's walking stick
American History

Symbol of Liberty: Benjamin Franklin’s Walking Stick

June 19, 2017

Benjamin Franklin, one of America’s Founding Fathers, cherished his walking stick. This relatively simple object, adorned with a liberty fur cap at the top, conveys a powerful message about America’s national character at its inception and reveals the success of Franklin’s diplomatic efforts with France during Revolutionary times. […]

American History

Who Helped Fund America? — The History of Robert Morris

June 12, 2017

Money issues abounded in the new United States. Why was the abundance of land (and lack of hard coin) such a problem? What compelled states to print so much of their own unsecure paper money? how did Robert Morris attempt to restore the links between commerce, agriculture, and government finances? […]

The Torch Allen Guelzo
American History

America’s Founding Fathers: The Torch Podcast

June 10, 2017

The story of America’s founding—great men who debated, argued, persuaded, and negotiated their way to the U.S. Constitution—is as dramatic and instructive as any in the nation’s history. And there is no better way to tell the story of the Founding Fathers than by pairing an eminent U.S. historian with the very institution that is most synonymous with American history, the Smithsonian. […]

Commemorative print of Abraham Lincoln with the text of the Emancipation Proclamation of January 1, 1863. Print published in 1865. (Image: Everett Historical/Shutterstock)
American History

Dismantling Slavery: The Emancipation Proclamation

June 5, 2017

President Lincoln knew he had a moral obligation to abolish slavery. But as Commander-in-Chief of the Union army, the timing of emancipation had military consequences that would require careful consideration. […]

American family watching TV, 1958
American History

From Radio to Television: The History of Electronic Communication

May 20, 2017

In 1900, the invention of the radio was patented thereby cutting the cord of the great invention of the telegraph and allowing news and music to be broadcast to many people simultaneously. It wasn’t long before inventors figured out how to include picture with the audio and soon the television was born. By 1955, television had made its way into the living rooms of half of the American population. […]

Photo of old books with candles, a feather, and round framed glasses
American History

Thomas Jefferson’s Books

May 9, 2017

The story of America’s founding—great men who debated, argued, persuaded, and negotiated their way to the U.S. Constitution—is as dramatic and instructive as any in the nation’s history. Read how Thomas Jefferson was influenced by Enlightenment politics and which books influenced the author of The Declaration of Independence. […]

Japanese family in traditional clothing (Image:Marzolino/Shutterstock)
History

Japanese Family Life: A Historical Perspective

May 8, 2017

Japan’s 2,000-year-old civilization grew through periods of seclusion and assimilation to cultivate a society responsible for immeasurable influences on the rest of the world. Here, we’ll take a peak at how Japanese family life evolved over ten centuries. […]

American History

An Icon of History: Thomas Jefferson’s Bible

April 13, 2017

Jefferson’s bible is an amazing artifact. It provides insight into Jefferson’s views and his handiwork, an amazing illustration of how this founding father himself practiced the freedom of religion so avidly sought for all Americans. […]

Image of Mt Vernon estate for the Islam in America article
American History

Islam in America — The American Revolution

April 12, 2017

Former President Barack Obama stated “Islam has always been a part of America.” History confirms this to be undeniably true. Read more from The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington & The Great Courses Daily. […]

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