The first black marines decorated by the famed 2nd Marine Dvision somewhere in the Pacific. (Left to right) Staff Sgt Timerlate Kirven and Cpl. Samuel J. Love, Sr., received Purple Hearts for wounds received in the Battle of Saipan.

Who Were the Montford Point Marines?

Recruits in the first African-American Marine Corps trained at Montford Point, eventually ending the military’s longstanding policy of racial segregation.
Girls in a swimming class entertain an audience of neighborhood residents at Mullanphy Pool in St. Louis, MO

When Cities Closed Pools to Avoid Integration

Many Americans lack nearby municipal pools, the lasting result of extralegal Jim Crow-era efforts to keep races segregated at all costs.
Presidents Tyler, Fillmore, Andrew Johnson, Arthur, Theodore Roosevelt, Coolidge, Truman, Lyndon Johnson, and Ford

The Accidental Presidents of the United States

How "accidental" world leaders have faced the challenges of leading major democracies without being voted in.
"On Decoration Day" Political cartoon c. 1900 by John T. McCutcheon

The Evolution of Memorial Day

What started as a solemn commemoration of dead Civil War soldiers has become a celebration of summer. Here's why that makes total sense.
Vice President Hubert Humphrey, circa 1965

Hubert Humphrey’s Vice Presidential Dilemma

Hubert Humphrey was well-respected as Lyndon B. Johnson's vice president--but he failed to capture the imagination of the young Democrats of the late 60s.
Lon Chaney and Richard Arlen lead vigilante committee in a scene from the film 'The Town Tamer', 1965.

The Civilian Solution to Bank Robberies

The surprising story of the vigilantes who took it upon themselves to catch bank robbers in the 1920s and 30s.

The Mob Violence of the Red Summer

In 1919, a brutal outburst of mob violence was directed against African Americans across the United States. White, uniformed servicemen led the charge.
A drawing of the Astor Place Riot, 1849, by Charles M. Jenckes

When an Argument Over Macbeth Incited a Bloody Riot

On May 10th, 1849, protestors rioted at Astor Place Opera House, leading to the deadliest civic insurrection in American history up to that time.
A cowboy in the western United States, between 1898 and 1905

Go West, You Nervous Men

The "Rest Cure" for women is notorious. But the "West Cure" for men, though little known today, is a fundamental part of American mythology.
A sign for the Highlander Folk School

The Destruction of a Civil Rights Center

The Highlander Research and Education Center is "the most notable American experiment in adult education for social change." One of its buildings recently burned down.