Civil War

In the not-so-distant past, the Russian and American governments talked up the shared crucibles of their two mid-19th century leaders as a way of improving diplomatic relations.

Before Lincoln Issued the Emancipation Proclamation, This Russian Czar Freed 20 Million Serfs

The parallels between the U.S. president and Alexander II, both of whom fought to end servitude in their nations, are striking

Designer Samantha Black created three special-edition outfits for Claudie.

New American Girl Doll Celebrates Black Joy During the Harlem Renaissance

Nine-year-old Claudie Wells' story unfolds in 1920s New York

By March 1862, Judith Henry's Virginia home had been reduced to rubble.

Untold Stories of American History

The Civil War's First Civilian Casualty Was an Elderly Widow From Virginia

Union gunfire killed 85-year-old Judith Carter Henry on July 21, 1861—the day of the First Battle of Bull Run

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Untold Stories of American History

The Southbound Underground Railroad Brought Thousands of Enslaved Americans to Mexico

Rather than head north, many of those in bondage made a different treacherous journey in a bold quest for freedom that historians are now unearthing

Members of the 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps pose on Minerva Terrace at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park in 1896.

Untold Stories of American History

The Black Buffalo Soldiers Who Biked Across the American West

In 1897, the 25th Infantry Regiment Bicycle Corps embarked on a 1,900-mile journey from Montana to Missouri

According to author Christopher A. Thomas, the dedication "was a microcosm of the strained race relations of its day, marked by the rhetoric of good intentions and the behavior of bigotry."

A Century Ago, the Lincoln Memorial's Dedication Underscored the Nation's Racial Divide

Seating was segregated, and the ceremony's only Black speaker was forced to drastically revise his speech to avoid spreading "propaganda"

Last September, an installation of almost 700,000 white flags on the National Mall paid tribute to the Americans who have died of Covid-19.

Covid-19

The Civil War Drastically Reshaped How Americans Deal With Death. Will the Pandemic?

Around 750,000 people died during the conflict—2.5 percent of the country's population at the time

The only available photograph of America Newton, a formerly enslaved woman who ran a laundry business out of her cabin in Julian, California, dates to around 1910.

The Trailblazing Black Entrepreneurs Who Shaped a 19th-Century California Boomtown

Though founded by Confederates, Julian became a place of opportunity for people of color—and a model for what the U.S. could look like after the Civil War

A 19th-century illustration of two yellow fever victims in New Orleans

Race in America

How Yellow Fever Intensified Racial Inequality in 19th-Century New Orleans

A new book explores how immunity to the disease created opportunities for white, but not Black, people

The Commemorative at St. Mary's College of Maryland honors the enslaved people who once lived and worked there.

Good News

National Park Service Adds 16 New Underground Railroad Sites to Commemorative Network

The recognitions honor the resistance and bravery of freedom seekers and their allies who risked their lives to resist slavery

Virginia Union University is one of the rare HBCUs in America that can tie its origins to a Black woman: Mary Lumpkin.

Women Who Shaped History

The Enslaved Woman Who Liberated a Slave Jail and Transformed It Into an HBCU

Forced to bear her enslaver's children, Mary Lumpkin later forged her own path to freedom

Kate Warne was the Pinkerton National Detective Agency's first woman operative. She died in 1868 at age 34 or 35.

Women Who Shaped History

How Kate Warne, America's First Woman Detective, Foiled a Plot to Assassinate Abraham Lincoln

In February 1861, the Pinkerton agent, posing as the disguised president-elect's sister and caregiver, safely escorted him to Baltimore

Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, Why Born Enslaved!, 1873

A Bold New Show at the Met Explores A Single Sculpture

The exhibition probes the paradoxes of Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux's "Why Born Enslaved!," the most famous depiction of a Black woman in 19th-century art

The facade of Talbot County Courthouse in Easton, Maryland, as pictured in 2010

History of Now

Maryland Removes Its Last Confederate Monument on Public Land

Workers removed the Talbot Boys Statue on Monday after years of pressure from the local community

Researchers unearthed 10-pound Civil War artillery shell at a national park in Georgia in February. Local authorities say they plan to safely detonate the bomb—a decision that angered some historians arguing for the artifact's preservation. 

Cool Finds

Unexploded Civil War Shell Unearthed in Georgia

Local authorities plan to safely detonate the ordnance, potentially destroying it in the process. The decision has sparked controversy among history buffs

Archaeologist pulled 12 Revolutionary War era cannons from the Savannah River in January. 

Cool Finds

How Did So Many Revolutionary War Cannons End Up in the Savannah River?

Archaeologists pull another dozen sediment-encrusted artillery pieces after finding three last year

Richmond took down its statue of Robert E. Lee in September 2021.

Richmond's Robert E. Lee Statue Is Headed to a Black History Museum

Officials have tentatively agreed to transfer ownership of removed Confederate monuments to a pair of museums in the Virginia city

Arnold Bertonneau of New Orleans, Robert Smalls of South Carolina and Anderson Ruffin Abbott of Toronto.

Meet the Black Men Who Changed Lincoln's Mind About Equal Rights

During the Civil War, these individuals convinced the president, altering the course of U.S. history

Virignia Governor Ralph Northam (center) looks on as conservators Kate Ridgway (left) and Sue Donovon (right) remove the time capsule's contents.

Cool Finds

A Time Capsule Found Beneath Richmond’s Robert E. Lee Monument Confounds Historians

An almanac, a silver coin and a cloth envelope were among the intriguing artifacts found in the box

Crews removed the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee from its perch in Charlottesville, Virginia, in July 2021. Controversy over the statue's fate sparked the violent "Unite the Right" rally in 2017.

History of Now

Charlottesville's Robert E. Lee Statue Will Be Melted Down, Transformed Into New Art

Officials in the Virginia city approved a bold plan for the future of the Confederate monument

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