Important dates in U. S. history

Timeline created by Crystal Ford
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    1770s: Declaration of Independence (1776)

    The centrality of the Declaration of Independence (1776) to the developments of the 1770s is self-evident. From the Boston Tea Party to the shot heard round the world, Washington’s Crossing of Delaware, and the Valley Forge winter, the American Revolution’s pursuit of liberty was made meaningful by the founding document of the great American experiment in democracy
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    1770s: Declaration of Independence (1776)

    The centrality of the Declaration of Independence (1776) to the developments of the 1770s is self-evident. From the Boston Tea Party to the shot heard round the world, Washington’s Crossing of Delaware, and the Valley Forge winter, the American Revolution’s pursuit of liberty was made meaningful by the founding document of the great American experiment in democracy.
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    1810s: Battle of New Orleans (1815)

    On January 8, 1815, a ragtag army under the command of Andrew Jackson decisively defeated British forces in the Battle of New Orleans, even though the War of 1812 had actually already ended. News of the Treaty of Ghent (December 24, 1814) had yet to reach the combatants. The American victory made a national figure of future president Jackson.
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    1870s: Battle of the Little Bighorn (1876)

    While the country celebrated its anniversary at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition, on June 25, 1876, the 7th Cavalry under the command of Col. George Armstrong Custer was vanquished by Lakota and Northern Cheyenne warriors led by Sitting Bull in the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Although it was a major victory for the Northern Plains people against U.S. expansionism, the battle marked the beginning of the end of Native American sovereignty over the West.
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    1900s: Breakup of Northern Securities (1902–04)

    In 1902 U.S. Pres. Theodore Roosevelt pursued the Progressive goal of curbing the enormous economic and political power of the giant corporate trusts by resurrecting the nearly defunct Sherman Antitrust Act to bring a lawsuit that led to the breakup of a huge railroad conglomerate, the Northern Securities Company. Roosevelt pursued this policy of “trust-busting” by initiating suits against 43 other major corporations during the next seven years.
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    1920s: Stock Market Crash (1929)

    “The chief business of the American people is business,” U.S. Pres. Calvin Coolidge said in 1925. And with the American economy humming during the “Roaring Twenties” (the Jazz Age), peace and prosperity reigned in the United States…until it didn’t. The era came to a close in October 1929 when the stock market crashed, setting the stage for years of economic deprivation and calamity during the Great Depression.
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    1940s: The Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (1945)

    The U.S. entered World War II on the side of the Allies following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (December 1941). In August 1945, with the war in Europe over and U.S. forces advancing on Japan, U.S. Pres. Harry S. Truman ushered in the nuclear era by choosing to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, in the hope that the terrible destruction unleashed would prevent an even greater loss of life that seemed likely with a protracted island-by-island invasion of Japan.
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    1970s: Watergate Scandal (1972–74)

    On August 9, 1974—facing likely impeachment for his role in covering up the scandal surrounding the break-in at the Democratic National Committee (DNC) headquarters in the Watergate complex in Washington, D.C., in June 1972—Republican Richard Nixon became the only U.S. president to resign. The loss of faith in government officials that resulted from the scandal suffused both popular and political culture with paranoia and disillusionment for the remainder of the decade.
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    2000s: September 11 Attacks

    Although terrorist attacks had been directed at the United States at the end of the 20th century, a new sense of vulnerability was introduced into American life on September 11, 2001, when Islamist terrorists crashed hijacked planes into the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and the Pennsylvania countryside, resulting in the deaths of nearly 3,000 people.
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    2010s: Election of Donald Trump (2016)

    Since at least the 1980s, the U.S. had been politically polarized by so-called culture wars that symbolically divided the country into Republican-dominated red states and Democrat-dominated blue states. The 2016 election of Republican Donald Trump whose campaign was grounded in nationalism and antiimmigrant rhetoric could be seen then as a reaction to the seeming triumph of “blue” values during the two-term presidency of the United States’ first African American president, Democrat Barack Obama.