Category Archives: american history

The latest e-book in our trendsetting Common Threads series, Immigrant Identity and the Politics of Citizenship draws on decades of scholarship to provide the context for current discussions about immigration, a topic of national importance and without a doubt one of the flash points of … Continue reading

Frank Zeidler transformed Milwaukee during his three terms as mayor of the Wisconsin city. However, the kind of change that Zeidler, a member of the Socialist Party of America, brought to Milwaukee was not well met by everyone. Mid-century conservatives … Continue reading

On July 15, 1805, William Rector undertook an important, if arduous, task. By government order, he was to survey the Buffalo Trace, also known as the Vincennes Trace, a makeshift road pounded down by migrating herds of bison. “The trace … Continue reading

Nick Fischer is Adjunct Research Fellow of the School of Philosophical, Historical and International Studies at Monash University, Melbourne. He answered some questions about his book Spider Web: The Birth of American Anticommunism. Q: How does the term “spider web” describe the anticommunist movement … Continue reading

Often dismissed as a nineteenth-century curiosity, spiritualism in fact influenced the radical social and political movements of its time. Believers filled the ranks of the Free Democrats, agitated for land and monetary reform, fought for abolition, and held egalitarian leanings … Continue reading

Generally considered a bummer of epic proportions, the Great Depression nonetheless inspired a measure of nostalgia. Americans looked back to a simpler time, of lives unencumbered by food, employment, homes, or arable Great Plains farmland. Liberals celebrated the halcyon days … Continue reading

For years, native Hawaiians had fought with a modest degree of success to maintain their autonomy. But in 1893, white businessmen—sugar magnates and the like—had taken control by tossing out Hawaii’s last monarch and organizing their own provisional government. Not … Continue reading

Often overlooked in the literature written about American families, the Smiths of Western New York nonetheless have a claim over the Rockefellers and Adamses and all the other subjects of lap-breaking tomes put out by big name biographers. The Smiths … Continue reading

In 1862, as the Civil War raged and a Confederate victory seemed quite possible, many of the tensions unleashed by the war found a stage in Pekin. There, on June 25, a group of pro-Union men organized the Union League. This organization, dedicated … Continue reading

A boxing legend but a towering American cultural figure, Muhammad Ali lived a life beyond adjectives, indeed beyond superlatives, and that’s just what he set out to do. Tributes to the Greatest have filled the Internet since we heard word … Continue reading