Born in New Orleans in 1901, jazz musician Louis Armstrong (d. 1971)was known for his distinctive trumpet-playing and vocal style. He often improvised jazz riffs using his voice rather than his instrument, “scatting” notes and melodies rather than singing actual words. Armstrong transformed t
By the late 19th century, the United States had established itself as a world leader in the area of civil engineering. Perhaps no project better symbolized America's technical prowess than the awe-inspiring Brooklyn Bridge, which connected the nation's largest and third largest cities—New York
Large yellow stripe with anchor and coat of arms. Red stripes on either side of yellow.
Spanish admiral’s flag captured by United States gunboat Petrel from the cruiser Isla de Luzon during the Battle of Manila
Spinning wheels are believed to have originated in India between 500 and 1000 A.D. By the 13th century, they were seen in Europe, and were a standard piece of equipment for those making fiber into yarn. By the 17th century they were commonly found in homes in the colonies of North America.
Until May 12, 1864, this shattered stump was a large oak tree in a rolling meadow just outside Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia. The same fury of rifle bullets that cut down 2,000 combatants tore away all but twenty-two inches of the tree's trunk. Several of the conical minie balls (bullets) ar
This spur, worn over a riding boot, was made in Mexico in the mid-1800s. Rubbed against the animal's side, spurs are one of the instruments that riders use to direct horses. The spikes on this spur are set on a small wheel called a rowel, making this a rowel spur. Horses and good riding equipment
Many immigrants sought to preserve their cultural heritage while at the same time embracing their new identity as Americans. Manfred Anson did so in designing this Hanukkah lamp to mark the centennial of the Statue of Liberty in 1986. Anson, who escaped Nazi Germany as a teenager, later reunited wit
This is one of the first models of Liberty cast in the United States. Often described as the American Committee Model, this statuette was produced in the tens of thousands. It was sold to subscribers to finance the construction of a pedestal for the full-size statue in New York Harbor.
The steam locomotive "John Bull" was built in 1831 and ran for 35 years, pulling trains of passengers and cargo between the two largest cities of the time, Philadelphia and New York. The locomotive propelled trains at 25 to 30 miles per hour...
This apparatus was designed by Catherine Stern, a physicist by training and the founder of a Montessori school in her native Germany. Stern and her husband were of Jewish descent, and emigrated to New York City in 1938 to avoid persecution by the Nazis. There she developed these materials, descri
Drawing on Takaki's vast array of primary sources, and staying true to his own words whenever possible, A Different Mirror for Young People brings ethnic history alive through the words of people, including teenagers, who recorded their experiences in letters, diaries, and poems. Like Zinn's A Peopl
Japanese Americans reflect on their years spent in internment camps as children or young adults. They discuss the process of being forced from their homes, and their ability to make the prisons more livable despite oppressive conditions.