Nineteenth-century History

Rocky Mountains

Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: Idaho Springs, Colorado

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...
Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: South Pass City, Wyoming

Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: South Pass City, Wyoming

There are many towns throughout the American west which serve as excellent examples of what a mining “boom town” was like. South Pass City, Wyoming is one such town. It is a relatively rare example, however, in that it has survived practically unchanged into the present and as such can b...
Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: Bannack, Montana

Rocky Mountain Mining Towns: Bannack, Montana

The first part of the new series about mining towns in the Rocky Mountains will begin with Bannack, Montana. Nothing, but a ghost town now, Bannack was the site of a major gold discovery in 1862. The town was founded the same year as a result of the discovery and is named after the local...
Life in Nineteenth Century Mining Towns

Life in Nineteenth Century Mining Towns

One of my biggest fascinations with the Old West is with what life in a Rocky Mountain mining town in nineteenth century would have been like. It would have been a life full of filth, rough characters and hard work combined with drinking, fighting and gambling as pastimes. Of course these are stereo...

Mining in the Modern West

I was looking around on YouTube today and came across a really interesting video about modern mining in the Rocky Mountains by National Geographic. The primary focus of the video is about an 1872 mining law that allows mining companies to purchase federal land from the government at 1872 prices. The...
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Nineteenth Century German History: Consequences of the Fall of the Holy Roman Empire (1806-1848) – Part 1

Nineteenth Century German History: Consequences of the Fall of the Holy Roman Empire (1806-1848) – Part 1

The fall of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806 had drastic consequences for nineteenth century German history. For about a millennium a loose conglomeration of several different semi-autonomous German-speaking kingdoms under the Latin name of Sacrum Romanum Imperium 1 had controlled a vast region in Cent...
Who were the real cowboys? (Part 3)

Who were the real cowboys? (Part 3)

The image of the American cowboy as we perceive it today was created in the 19th century, particularly in the postbellum period, or the period after the Civil War. After the war, many soldiers from both the Union and the Confederate sides had difficulties finding jobs in the east despite the South&#...
Kings of Bavaria: King Ludwig III

Kings of Bavaria: King Ludwig III

A long, tragic series of events brought King Ludwig III to the Bavarian throne. He was the monarch who was never destined to become king. He did not inherit it, but instead took it from his mentally ill cousin. Ludwig also saw the end of his family's 700-year rule over Bavaria.
George Custer on the Origins of the Indians

George Custer on the Origins of the Indians

It is really quite amazing to read through some of the theories produced during the 19th century about the origin of the Native Americans. As I talked about in my last post, I am currently reading the memoirs of George Custer about his life on the plains and his personal experiences with the Indians...