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Articles on US history

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As a printer’s apprentice in 1721, Franklin had a front-row seat to the controversy around a new prevention technique. ClassicStock/Archive Photos via Getty Images

Benjamin Franklin’s fight against a deadly virus: Colonial America was divided over smallpox inoculation, but he championed science to skeptics

When Bostonians in 1721 faced a deadly smallpox outbreak, a new procedure called inoculation was found to help fend off the disease. Not everyone was won over, and newspapers fed the controversy.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, standing at center and facing left just above the eagle, takes the presidential oath of office for the third time in 1941. FDR Presidential Library and Museum via Flickr

Has any US president ever served more than eight years?

Only one president has done so – Franklin Delano Roosevelt – but others considered it, and even tried.
Migrants pray at a March 2 demonstration at San Ysidro crossing port in Tijuana, Mexico, to demand clearer U.S. migration policies. Guillermo Arias/AFP via Getty Images

When Americans recall their roots, they open up to immigration

Research suggests that reminding Americans – Democrats and Republicans – of their family history creates empathy for immigrants and more favorable views toward immigration.
Huntsville reveres hometown hero Sam Houston. And he did not revere the Confederacy. Jimmy Henderson/flickr

Texas distorts its past – and Sam Houston’s legacy – to defend Confederate monuments

Texas’ most famous statesman, Sam Houston, was a slave owner who opposed the Confederacy. But white Texans tend to omit his dissent in current debates over removing Confederate markers.
Virginia National Guard troops in front of the U.S. Capitol building, Feb. 5, 2021. Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

How the National Guard became the go-to military force for riots and civil disturbances

Some 5,000 National Guardsmen will stay in Washington to protect the Capitol into March, according to the Pentagon. The Guard is seen as a reliable peacekeeping force – but it wasn’t always that way.
U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland speaks in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Oct. 1, 2018. Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images

‘Indian Country’ is excited about the first Native American secretary of the interior – and the promise she has for addressing issues of importance to all Americans

If confirmed, US Rep. Deb Haaland of New Mexico would be the first Native American to run the agency that interacts with tribal nations. But her agenda extends far beyond Indian Country.

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