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.
A yellow ribbon on a red background

The Many Meanings of Yellow Ribbons

The strange and convoluted history of why yellow ribbons became a symbol of the Gulf War in the 1990s.
An illustration of Casimir Pulaski

The New Legacy of Casimir Pulaski

New findings reveal that the Polish war officer who aided the American Revolution may have been intersex.
A Florida postcard

How Florida Got Its Name

506 years ago, Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León landed in what he christened "Florida." Historians still wonder where the name came from.
Allan Pinkerton at the camp at Antietam in September, 1862

A Horse’s-Eye View of the Civil War

Horses and mules played a major role in the American Civil War. In the end, there were about twice as many dead equines as humans.
President John F. Kennedy fields a question at a press conference on April 14, 1961, in Washington, DC. This press conference took place three days before the failed 'Bay of Pigs' invasion of Cuba and just three months into Kennedy's presidency.

How the Bay of Pigs Invasion Changed JFK

The disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion, early in John F. Kennedy's presidency, led him to reconfigure his foreign policy decision-making process.
Private Jessica Lynch Meets With U.S. President George W. Bush in the Oval Office June 17, 2004

How American Soldier Jessica Lynch Became a Symbol

Jessica Lynch was the first woman American POW to be successfully rescued. She became symbolic in ways that had little to do with the facts of her story.
Voltairine de Cleyre, Christmas 1891

Voltairine de Cleyre: American Radical

She was a notable anarchist thinker and speaker, but history has largely forgotten Voltairine de Cleyre.