Nineteenth-century History

18th Century

American Historical Documents

I was browsing the internet just now and ran across an interesting website from Indiana University. The site has several scanned images of original historical documents from the 18th century such as the Constitution of the United States of America, the Stamp Act (both American and British printings)...

Biography on Jesse and Frank James

This is a very interesting show done on the James brothers, Jesse and Frank. You can either view it on Hulu or view it here:...

Forgotten Benjamin Franklin Letters Found

CNN is reporting that letters never before seen by scholars by, to or about Benjamin Franklin have surfaced in London. LONDON, England (CNN) — An American professor doing research in London stumbled across a series of previously unknown letters written by, to, and about Benjamin Franklin, a st...

New Worlds For All

This semester I am taking a survey class of US history up to 1865. For that class, I just finished reading a book entitled New Worlds for All: Indians, Europeans, and the Remaking of Early America by Colin G. Calloway. The book itself was actually quite interesting. Calloway discusses how the world ...

Who were the real cowboys? (Part 2)

The history of the cowboy is a story that begins long ago. What we now think of as a uniquely American tradition is not solely American at all. Cowboy tradition first originated in mediæval Spain with the hacienda, or estate. The haciendas belonged to wealthy landowners and were generally, but not ...
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Who were the real cowboys? (Part 2)

The history of the cowboy is a story that begins long ago. What we now think of as a uniquely American tradition is not solely American at all. Cowboy tradition first originated in mediæval Spain with the hacienda, or estate. The haciendas belonged to wealthy landowners and were generally, but not ...

The General Mining Act of 1872

When gold was discovered in California in 1848, it caused a mass-migration of prospective miners to the west. Unfortunately at that time, the US government had very few mining laws, practically none of which were effective, and without a significant presence in the newly-acquired state of California...

Who were the real cowboys? (Part 1)

“Always drink upstream from the herd.” That was the advice of just one of hundreds of anonymous cowboys of the 19th century. While many of us are familiar with romanticized cowboys such as those played by John Wayne and Clint Eastwood in western films, many of us do not know much about t...

Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: Idaho Springs, Colorado

There are few mining towns of the old west which are still operational. Most mining operations were shut down for a large variety of different reasons and the towns supporting them then slowly dried up and eventually became ghost towns. Idaho Springs, Colorado, however, is one of the few which are s...