Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1789

Americans don’t know it and children aren’t taught it, but George Washington is responsible for our Thanksgiving holiday. It was our first president, not the Pilgrims and not Abraham Lincoln, who led the charge to make this day of thanks a truly national event.

Save Tennessee Hallowed Ground

With the American Battlefield Trust, help is needed to save two critical parcels of historic land at Lookout Mountain and Franklin, Tennessee, for a combined total of 303 acres.

Christmas During the Civil War

Christmas During the Civil War

ByByJustin M.November 28, 2020

“Christmas in Camp,” an illustration by Thomas Nast for Harper’s Weekly By the mid-19th century, most of today’s familiar Christmas trappings — Christmas carols, gift giving and tree decoration — were already in place.  Charles Dickens had published “A Christmas Carol” in 1843 and indeed, the…

Saved By His Bible – Sam Houston, Jr.

Saved By His Bible – Sam Houston, Jr.

ByByNathan MoteNovember 25, 2020

After attending preparatory school at Baylor University, he enrolled at the Bastrop Military Academy.. Sam Jr. inherited his mother’s artistic ability and was frequently drawing and sketching. Although his father opposed secession, Sam Houston Jr., enlisted as a private in The Bayland Guards, Company C, of the 2nd Texas Infantry,…

Civil War Railroads

Civil War Railroads

ByByJustin M.November 25, 2020

On a hot summer day in 1861, Union and Confederate troops lined up along Bull Run Creek preparing to fight the first major battle of the Civil War. Behind the Confederate lines was the town of Manassas Junction. There the Manassas Gap Railroad came east from the Shenandoah Valley. At…

Battle of New Market Heights

Battle of New Market Heights

ByByJustin M.November 24, 2020

Events leading to the Battle of New Market Heights began during the blistering summer of 1864, when overall Federal commander Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant directed the Army of the Potomac, commanded by Maj. Gen. George G. Meade, to relentlessly push the Confederates south from the Rappahannock River toward the…

Christmas During the Civil War

It can be difficult to relate to the men and women of the Civil War era.  Despite the extraordinarily different circumstances in which they found themselves, however, we can connect…

Saved By His Bible – Sam Houston, Jr.

On May 25, 1843, Sam Houston, Jr. was the first of eight children born to General Sam Houston and Margaret Lea. Sickly when he was born at Washington-on-the Brazos, Texas,…

Civil War Railroads

Confederate troops were rushed by rail to confront the Union army led by Brigadier General Irwin McDowell at Bull Run. Among those who rode by rail was a brigade under…

FEATURE 1
DOCUMENTS

READ what those who lived through America’s past said about their challenges and choices

FEATURE 2
LIBRARY

EXPLORE biographies, battles, and events throughout America’s historical past

FEATURE 3
RESOURCES

DISCOVER historical exhibits, sources for research, images of American history

America, the New World

The discovery of America, the New World was made by Christopher Columbus 1451-1506 in 1492. America was named after Amerigo Vespucci in 1507. America, the New World opened up new…

Christopher Columbus

Columbus, CHRISTOPHER (Cristoforo Colombo), discoverer of America; born in or near Genoa about 1435. At the age of ten years he was placed in the University of Pavia, where he was…

Jacques Cartier

Cartier, JACQUES, French navigator; born at St. Malo, France, Dec. 31, 1494; was commissioned by Francis I., King of France, to command an expedition to explore the Western Continent. On…

Beaver Wars

Beaver Wars

The Beaver Wars, also known as the Iroquois Wars or the French and Iroquois Wars (French: Guerres franco-iroquoises), encompass a series of conflicts fought intermittently during the 17th century in America. They were battles for economic welfare throughout the Saint Lawrence River valley in Canada and the lower Great Lakes region which pitted the Iroquois against the northern Algonquians and the Algonquians’ French allies.…

Antelope Hills Expedition

Antelope Hills Expedition

The Antelope Hills Expedition was a campaign from January 1858 to May 1858 by the Texas Rangers and members of other allied native American tribes against Comanche and Kiowa villages in the Comancheria. It began in western Texas and ending in a series of fights with the Comanche tribe on May 12, 1858 at a…

Comanche Wars

Comanche Wars

The Comanche Wars began in 1706 with raids by Comanche on Spanish colonies in New Mexico and continued until the last bands of Comanche surrendered to the United States in 1875 although a few Comanche warriors continued to fight in conflicts such as the Buffalo Hunters’ War in 1876 and 1877.[1] In the 18th century, the Comanche established…

Arikara War

Arikara War

The Arikara War was an armed conflict between the United States, their allies from the Sioux (or Dakota) tribe and Arikara Native Americans that took place in the summer of 1823, along the Missouri River in present-day South Dakota.[5] It was the first Indian war west of the Missouri fought by the U.S. Army and its only conflict ever with…

Antelope Hills Expedition

The Antelope Hills Expedition was a campaign from January 1858 to May 1858 by the Texas Rangers and members of other allied native American tribes against Comanche and Kiowa villages in the Comancheria.

Beaver Wars

The Beaver Wars, also known as the Iroquois Wars or the French and Iroquois Wars (French: Guerres franco-iroquoises), encompass a series of conflicts fought intermittently during the 17th century in America. They were battles for economic…

Tecumseh’s War

Although the war is often considered to have climaxed with William Henry Harrison’s victory at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811, Tecumseh’s War essentially continued into the War of 1812 and is frequently considered a…

Database of Battles

From Native Indians, The American Revolution,
and American Civil War

Battle of Fort Donelson

The Battle of Fort Donelson was fought from February 11 to February 16, 1862, in the Western Theater of the American Civil War.

Battle of Darbytown Road

Fought on October 13, 1864, during the Petersburg Campaign, the Battle of Darbytown Road, also known as the Battle of Alms House, was a failed Union attempt to stop the…

Battle of Philippi (West Virginia)

The Battle of Philippi—also known mockingly as “The Philippi Races”—was fought on June 30, 1861, in and around Philippi, Virginia (now West Virginia) as part of the Western Virginia Campaign…

Battle of White Marsh

Battle of White Marsh

Battle Summary General George Washington spent the weeks after his defeat at Germantown encamped with the Continental Army in various locations throughout Montgomery County, just north of British-occupied Philadelphia. In early November, the Americans established an entrenched position approximately 16 miles north of Philadelphia along the Wissahickon Creek and Sandy Run, primarily situated on several…

The Battle of Yorktown

The Battle of Yorktown

The Siege of Yorktown or Battle of Yorktown in 1781 was a decisive victory by combined assault of American forces led by General George Washington and French forces led by General Comte de Rochambeau over a British Army commanded by General Lord Cornwallis. It proved to be the last major land battle of…

The Battle of Eutaw Springs

The Battle of Eutaw Springs

Background Seven years of British determination to bring South Carolina to her knees met failure. The spirit that had long resisted royal edict and church canon, the fierce desire and indomitable will to be masters of their own destinies, and the dauntless courage that had carved a new way of…

The Battle of Guilford Courthouse

The Battle of Guilford Courthouse

Overview On the bright, late winter day of March 15, 1781, the Revolutionary War came to a remote county seat in north central North Carolina. Guilford Courthouse, with its population of considerably fewer than 100, was on this day the temporary residence of 4,400 American soldiers and their leader, Maj.…

The Battle of Brandywine

It was a critical time for George Washington. He had just been soundly defeated in New York and morale was very low. His writings to the Continental Congress tell us…

The Battle of Long Island (Brooklyn Heights)

The British recognized the strategic importance of New York as the focal point for communications between the northern and southern colonies. Washington also recognized this, and in April of 1776…

The Battle of Trenton

As soon as Fort Lee was abandoned, Washington began to withdraw his army across New Jersey toward Philadelphia. About 5,000 Americans left Hackensack on November 21, 1776, and retired without…