US Department of the Interior via Wikimedia Commons
The idea of an American Muslim registry has gained traction in some circles, but the historical precedents are shaky at best.
The 2007 midwinter solstice illumination of the main altar tabernacle of Old Mission San Juan Bautista, California.
Rubén G. Mendoza/Ancient Editions
At many Spanish missions in the US and Latin America, the rising sun illuminates the altar on the winter solstice or other symbolic days. To the faithful, these events meant that Christ was with them.
President Eisenhower and John Foster Dulles in 1956.
In 1952, military man Dwight Eisenhower was elected president without any experience in elective office. Here’s how he built his cabinet.
“I bless this business deal.”
No other nation has conjoined business success and piety quite like America has. Is Donald Trump's election a strange perversion of this tradition?
J. Robert Oppenheimer, often called the ‘father of the atomic bomb’ who chaired the ancestor of today’s Department of Energy, had his security clearance revoked during the ‘Red Scare’ of the 1950s.
A historian of science and technology says Trump team's request for names of Department of Energy employees working on climate change recalls worst excesses of ideology-driven science in government.
John Gast’s ‘American Progress’ (1872), depicting the US’s westward expansion.
Jared Farmer/Wikimedia Commons
The ideology of 'manifest destiny' has underpinned centuries of discriminatory legislation and violence against the US's indigenous people.
Donald Trump eats dinner with Mitt Romney (right) and Reince Priebus.
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
Two Italian scholars who fled fascism in the 1920s urgently warned that American democracy was vulnerable to the same gradual erosion as in Italy. Their message still rings true today.
Jennie A. Brownscombe’s ‘The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth’ (1914).
The Pilgrims were thankful for finally being able to vanquish Thomas Morton and Ferdinando Gorges, who spent years trying to undermine the legal basis for settlements in Massachusetts and beyond.
FBI Director James Comey on Capitol Hill explaining his why he won’t prosecute Hillary Clinton.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File
A historian and biographer of J. Edgar Hoover answers questions on how FBI director James Comey is handling a position with a dark past.
Senator John F. Kennedy speaks to supporters at Chicago Stadium four days before the 1960 election.
While it's unprecedented to call an election 'rigged' before voting has even taken place, there is a history of candidates crying foul after suspicious results.
'Table' via www.shutterstock.com
In the story of Manhattan's Le Pavillon and its irascible manager, a food historian sees the rise and fall of French cuisine in America.
Joseph Sohm via Shutterstock
It's easy to forget that in 1992, the Clintons railed spectacularly against the status quo. Fortunately, it's all on film.
Agricultural Building at the Worlds Columbian Exposition, Chicago, Illinois, circa 1893.
University of Maryland Digital Collections
An anthropologist tells the story of how Columbus actually came close to falling into historical obscurity, until American hubris got in the way.
Boxer Jack Johnson was relentlessly reprimanded for his arrogance and opulent lifestyle. But what was the criticism really about?
The controversy over Kaepernick's refusal to stand for the National Anthem isn’t a watershed moment. It's only the latest chapter in a long history of people trying to control how black people behave.
Can a Hollywood film re-write one of the oldest and most important stories in the American past?
The Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona, is one of the few remnants of America’s mid-20th century motel boom.
Library of Congress
What does the shuttering of traditional roadside motels say about America's relationship with travel and freedom?
‘Feeling great!’ Clinton puts on a brave face for reporters a few hours after leaving a 9/11 commemoration because she felt ‘overheated.’
Avoiding questions about coughs and chronic conditions has a long political history in America.
Women line the Atlantic City boardwalk to protest the 1968 Miss America pageant.
Feminist Theories & Art Practices
For decades, the Miss America pageant had excluded minorities while celebrating a very narrow definition of womanhood. Then two separate protests – a women's liberation picket and the lesser-known Miss Black America pageant – said 'enough is enough.'
A valuable harvest.
American ginseng, a slow-growing native plant long used in traditional medicine, was abundant in colonial times. Now illegal harvesting and other stresses are pushing it close to extinction.
Woody Guthrie’s tenancy in Fred Trump’s Beach Haven apartment complex coincided with a diagnosis of Huntington’s disease.
Library of Congress
'Trump made a tramp out of me,' Guthrie lamented, denouncing his landlord who barred black families and pocketed federal funds.