An illustration called “British Burning Washington” depicting the White House on fire in 1814.
U.S. Library of Congress
Donald Trump was under the mistaken impression that Canadians once burned down the White House. But he's not the only one who has a fuzzy sense of the history of the War of 1812.
Pontus Edenberg via Shutterstock
Donald Trump’s recent comments about African-American voters reflect his historical ignorance, but also call attention to an overlooked chapter of US racial history.
SpongeBob Squarepants has become a cultural icon.
The cartoon-turned-Broadway sensation is set in a place named after the Bikini islands, which has a dark history of forced removal and exile of native people from their land.
‘Silent Spring’ author Rachel Carson testifies before a Senate Government Operations Subcommittee in Washington, D.C. on June 4, 1963. Carson urged Congress to curb the sale of chemical pesticides and aerial spraying.
Did Rachel Carson catalyze the organic farming movement, as many advocates claim? Or would she reject their ban on synthetic fertilizer and see organic as an inefficient way to feed the world?
Chemical companies touted synthetic insecticides and herbicides as miracle products in the 1940s and 1950s. But farmers and cropdusting pilots didn't always buy the sales pitch.
Sophie Tucker defiantly embraced her fuller figure.
AP Photo/Remo Nassi
'I Don't Want to Get Thin,' singer Sophie Tucker proclaimed – an attitude that was decades ahead of its time.
Gina Haspel can expect a difficult round of questions.
Gina Haspel is in hot water over the CIA's use of 'enhanced interrogation techniques'. And in decades past, the US imprisoned people for using the same methods.
Radical policy shifts are a hallmark of the Trump administration. On May 8, the president announced that the U.S. would withdraw from the international Iran nuclear deal.
Many presidents have radically changed US foreign policy. Truman created his own doctrine. Carter gave up the Panama Canal. But a presidential historian sees danger in Trump's decision-making style.
The pretzel has had a twisted path from Germany to global snack food.
Why are they shiny? And how did Pennsylvania become the pretzel capital of the world?
National Memorial for Peace and Justice.
AP Photo/Brynn Anderson
Although fewer black women were lynched in the US than men, their stories have been marginalized. Will a new memorial in Alabama help make their sacrifices known?
Copies of the memos written by former FBI Director James Comey.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh
Past presidents have made strange requests of the FBI, some of which were documented by J. Edgar Hoover.
Panama Canal construction in 1913 showing workers drilling holes for dynamite in bedrock, as they cut through the mountains of the Isthmus. Steam shovels in the background move the rubble to railroad cars.
The Panama Canal was a tremendous achievement by the U.S. and a display of their power and abilities. However, the health costs to the mostly Caribbean contract workers was enormous.
President Donald Trump delivers remarks at the Pentagon on January 18, 2018.
Dominique A. Pineiro/Flickr
Not a day passes without fresh speculation about the possible impeachment of Donald Trump, but history indicates that – barring a dramatic turn of events – he is likely to serve out his first term.
Bridge built by CCC workers, Shady Lake Recreation Area, Arkansas.
On April 5, 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt created the Civilian Conservation Corps, a massive relief program that paid young men to plant trees and build parks across the nation. It was money well spent.
US census advocates held a rally in Charlotte, NC, in 2010.
AP Photo/Jason E. Miczek
Recent changes to the 2020 census are worrying experts who say they may lead to an undercount. It's an issue other democracies have also grappled with throughout history.
A naturalization ceremony in Los Angeles.
AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes
How Americans decide who can come into the country and who can stay reflects beliefs about what makes people worthy of opportunity.
Headline of a planned summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump.
AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon
A former US Department of Defense and State Department official explains why a hard-line approach on North Korea will likely fail, as it did with Iran.
Americans tend to prefer beers that have corn or rice ‘adjuncts,’ or fillers.
The unique role of the temperance movement in US history might explain why, when it comes to Americans' tastes, bland beer is still king.
Southern Pacific steam engine No. 1364 in 1891.
Efforts to curb railroads' monopoly power in the 19th century hold lessons for 21st-century policymakers and internet giants alike.
Nuclear reactors line the bank of the Columbia River at the Hanford site in 1960.
During the Cold War, the US built nuclear weapons at a network of secretive sites across the nation. Some are still heavily polluted and threaten public health today.