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A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

How do we tell the story of the studies of our nation’s past. The final EPISODE 4: Division EPISODE 9: Bust
American nation? From the earliest episode brings the story of America America became a nation just as a On October 29, 1929 the boom time
days of European settlement in the up through today as some of our most revolution in commerce and industry of the 1920s crashed on Wall Street.
New World, Americans from all revered leaders and artists reflect upon swept the western world. This episode The dramatic effects of the Great
backgrounds have recorded their stories the nation’s past, and challenge us to explores the economic growth of the Depression and New Deal are the topics
and attempted to make sense of their imagine the American stories that have U.S. in the context of rising divides of this episode. Despite economic
place in history. Each generation craves yet to be told. between the North and South over collapse, major public works projects
its own definitive version of the story of slavery. After the election of Abraham such as the Hoover Dam proved the
the American past. America The Story Curriculum links: Lincoln, Civil War became inevitable. might of the U.S. worker.
of Us is a six week television event America The Story of Us would be
on HISTORY starting Sunday, April useful for history, American culture, EPISODE 5: Civil War EPISODE 10: WWII
25th. This series captures the vast sweep social studies, geography, journalism In 1863, the Confederate Army America was still mired in the Great
of American history, focusing on the and ethnic studies courses. It is seemed poised to overtake the Union Depression, but U.S. involvement in
extraordinary story of how the United recommended for 6th grade students forces. Following the bloody battle WWII revved the engines of the U.S.
States was fashioned from technological and above. It connects with many of Antietam, Lincoln issued the economy – and changed American
innovation and an ongoing belief in the state standards and benchmarks in Emancipation Proclamation. Former society forever.
possibilities of experimentation. history and social studies. Families are slaves joined the Union army in droves. This episode delves into the WWII era
encouraged to watch this series together With battlefield technology and steely with attention to the role of women
From the earliest interactions between and discuss its meaning and relevance resilience, the Union prevailed and and African Americans, the use of new
Europeans and Native Americans in relation to their own local and family America was perched to become a technologies of war, and the enormous
through the harnessing of the histories. Visit us online for additional global superpower. effects of this era on the place of the
Mississippi River to the moon landing, curriculum resources, information U.S. in the world order.
America The Story of Us explores about contests, and much more at EPISODE 6: Heartland
the turning points that have shaped www.history.com/classroom. Questions? In 1869, the Atlantic and Pacific coasts EPISODES 11+12: Then and Now
U.S. history. Featuring surprising Email us at america@aetn.com of America were linked by continuous America’s most prominent leaders and
detail and colorful CGI (computer metal rails. Railroads connected personalities reflect on the defining
generated imagery), each one-hour Americans in new ways and altered moments of post-WWII America
Episode Guide
episode moves through a significant the ecology of the continent. The including the Cold War, the space race,
EPISODE 1: Rebels
chapter in the American story. With vast Plains, where buffalo and Native the civil rights movement, the Vietnam
The founding of Jamestown and
roots in the physical world, the series Americans had roamed, were remade War and Watergate. September 11th
Plymouth, the hardships of the early
captures the ways everyday people by land speculators and industrialists. is memorialized and the significance
colonies, the arrival of Africans
confronted and interacted with In less than a quarter of a century, the of President Obama’s election is
and development of slavery, and
animals, unforeseen weather, and the West was transformed. analyzed. The series concludes with a
interactions with Native Americans,
power of rivers and the sea. There are look at what has endured – and what
are explored. As the colonies prevail,
also stories of conflict – wars with EPISODE 7: Cities has changed – over 400 years of U.S.
tensions with the British ignite.
Native Americans, the scourge of In 1871 Chicago burned to the ground history.
slavery, the Revolutionary War that and from the ashes of the old a new
EPISODE 2: Revolution!
birthed the nation, and the Civil War kind of city rose. A flood of new
The sparks of rebellion, the Declaration
that nearly pulverized it. At every turn, immigration, resistance among workers
of Independence, and the drama of the
the series shows how Americans created to unfair conditions, and the expansion
American Revolution are examined in
new tools, structures, and machines to of mass transportation are covered. The
this episode. The triumph of General
blaze forward and build towns, cities innovative, entrepreneurial American
George Washington and his troops pave
and eventually, a diverse and distinct spirit embodied by business leaders and
the way for a new nation; the United
national culture. everyday Americans come to life in this
States is officially born.
PAGE  / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

This series offers educators and

EPISODE 3: Westward
students an extraordinary opportunity EPISODE 8: Boom
As wagon trains and cattle barons
to connect with the American past, Henry Ford’s Model T and assembly
headed westward, they confronted
learning about fascinating individual line, together with the discovery of
Native American Indians, the Spanish
stories of everyday Americans. The abundant oil reserves, opened up a new
and the French. Westward migration,
12 episodes in this series provide way of life in the 20th-century U.S.
the discovery of gold and other
a roadmap for learning about U.S. This episode traces the significance of
resources, and the battles to dominate
history, with stories along the way WWI, African American migration to
the American landscape are covered in
that are engaging touchstones for northern cities, prohibition, and the
this episode.
students to delve deeper into their own onset of the film industry.

Image Credits: Images are from the Library of Congress unless caption notes author.
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
cution and build a new society based on
Within two years tobacco grows in every their religious principles.
Jamestown garden, and within twenty
years it becomes Europe’s main source of They are religious separatists — radical
tobacco. Puritans who want to cut themselves off
from the Church of England in an un-
Among the new settlers in this boomtown known land 3,000 miles across an ocean.
are 19 Africans from Angola, taken from
a Spanish slaving ship. But here they are They have landed hundreds of miles
further north than they intended, far
from the fledgling settlements in Virginia.
But this isolation is what they hoped for.
Plymouth is a social experiment. They are
literally planning to build a “New World.”

These people are revolutionaries ex-

perimenting a with a new egalitarian,
spiritual way of living, utterly different
from the aristocratic England they have
left behind, and believe their community
should govern itself — and elect its own
leaders and ministers.
Jamestown Colony John Rolfe & Pocohantas
The settlement survives a harsh first win-
For an adventurer like John Rolfe, Amer- snakes and to dig the earth for wild and not slaves — slavery doesn’t yet exist un- ter. In 1621, the northern hemisphere is
ica is a continent of dreams. He heads unknown roots... der English law. Like most of Jamestown’s in the grip of a mini Ice Age: Winter lasts
from the crowded island of England to laborers, they’re employed as indentured from October to April.
a land with nine million square miles of Almost half of the 600 settlers have died. servants, tied to a contract for seven years,
wilderness. As many as sixty million buf- Many others have fled back to England. after which they are free. The site they have chosen for their settle-
falo and dozens of other species of wild- There are just sixty men left, and they are ment of Plymouth is on sandy, infertile
life roam its plains and woods. Its coastal starving to death.
waters are some of the richest fisheries on
earth. The settlers dream that in this land But John Rolfe arrives in Jamestown in
of plenty they will find gold and silver to the spring of 1609 with something that
make them rich. will change everything — a supply of
South American tobacco seeds.
But in 1609, for the English settlement
of Jamestown, the American dream has The tobacco plant is unique to the Ameri-
turned sour. Two years ago, these English cas. Brought back to Europe by Spanish
settlers arrived in Virginia. They set up explorers, it has England hooked. Sweet
their colony in the middle of the power- South American tobacco is an expensive
ful empire of the Powhatan peoples, a luxury. The Spanish guard their monopo-
confederacy that historians estimate may ly on the seeds and trade jealously.
have reached 21,000 people – hunters,
fishers and farmers. No one knows how John Rolfe gets
hold of his contraband seeds. But in the
The settlers plan to make their fortune warm, humid climate and the alluvial
plundering the abundant resources of soil of Virginia, tobacco flourishes. Rolfe,
America. But in Virginia, they’ve found America’s first entrepreneur, spots a gap
none of the treasures they hoped for: in the market and works out how to turn
no silk, no spices, no valuable medicinal a profit in the New World.
plants — and no gold.
In 1614, he marries the Princess we know Some will go on to farm their own land in soil. Over a harsh winter, food runs short.
Jamestown is not the first attempt by as Pocohontas. Virginia and Maryland. They are the first Between January and March, over half of

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 

Europeans to create a settlement in North African Americans. the settlers have died from starvation and
America, many others before them have JOHN ROLFE disease.
failed. The settlers have failed to grow Pokahuntas, to whom my hearty and best PLYMOUTH
food or trade with their Native American thoughts... have long been entangled and Ten years after Rolfe arrives in James- William Bradford, elected governor of the
neighbors enthralled in so intricate a labyrinth... town, in the spring of 1621, a very differ- small community, keeps a record of their
ent group of English settlers have planted hardships.
GEORGE PERCY The love match adds a happy twist to a toehold on the coast of New England,
Having fed upon horses and other beasts... Rolfe’s business plan. In America’s first laying the foundations of their New WILLIAM BRADFORD
we were glad to makeshift with vermin, international marketing campaign, Poca- World. They arrived six months before on It pleased God to visit us then with death
dogs, cats, rats and mice — and to eat hontas becomes the face that rebrands board the Mayflower. daily, and with so general a disease that the
boots, shoes, or any other leather some America as a land of opportunity. This living were scarce able to bury the dead...
could come by... Those being spent and was also a strategic decision politically— They have not come to America to make They died sometimes 2 or 3 a day. Of 100
devoured, some were enforced to search she was the daughter of Chief Powhatan, a profit. They have come to escape perse-
the woods and to feed upon serpents and the head of the native people. Continued on page 4
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

Rise Revolution
(continued from page 3) city of 16,000, the people of Boston feel against a British attempt to force Ameri-
under occupation. cans to buy taxed tea. American liberties
and odd persons, scarce 50 remained. are under threat, and 90,000 pounds of
On March 5, 1770, a musket shot rings tea ends up in Boston harbor.
This is not an empty wilderness. The out on King Street that moves Amer-
Pilgrims have built their houses near the ica one step closer to war. One soldier The British response is to close down
ruins of a Native American settlement. thrusts his bayonet into a young man Boston harbor, the busiest and wealthi-
In the ten years before their arrival, a lunging forward with a club. est port in America. Hundreds lose their
large percentage of the Native American jobs. The British mean to clamp down on
population of New England died by the In the confusion another soldier fires. the Boston radicals and isolate the rebel-
plague, brought to their shores by un- The officer shouts: Do not fire! A bullet lious colony of Massachusetts.
known European explorers. But there are In the second half of the 18th century, hits a young man, who falls down. The
only fifty pilgrims, and New England is soldiers retreat in the confusion towards CONTINENTAL CONGRESS
Boston is the third largest port in the
the domain of powerful Native Ameri- the gates. Another shot rings out, then Fifty-six delegates from 12 of the 13
British Empire, fed by the vast natural
can nations, who still number in the several more. A black man, Crispus At- colonies meet in Philadelphia to debate
resources of a continent. In its dockyards,
over 200 ships are built and fitted out tucks, is hit in the chest and dies. their response to British coercion. This is
each year with wood from the vast forests the birth of American democracy. From
The survival of the Plymouth pilgrims
of America. More shots are fired as the crowd tries the First Continental Congress will one
lies in Native American hands. The pil-
to run back, falling over each other as day evolve the government of the United
grims strike a deal with the most power-
The New England fishing fleet ships they throw themselves to the ground. States of America.
ful nation in New England, the Wampa-
thousands of tons of salted cod across Then another man running for cover is
noag. Each promises to support the other
the Atlantic and to the Caribbean each shot down. American blood lies on the For delegates in the middle colonies and
in the case of an enemy attack.
year. Boston merchants export hundreds streets. South, like Virginia landowner George
of thousands of gallons of rum, made in Washington, the issue is not just taxes,
New England from Caribbean sugar and Boston radical Paul Revere coins a phrase but also land. Many have their eyes set on
molasses. that spreads across the colonies: the Bos- new land west of the Appalachians. But
ton Massacre. He publishes a print that the British government has banned white
Much of this rum will be shipped to turns the night’s events into propaganda. settlement in the west.
Africa, and used to buy one of the most Revere’s print is sold through the Boston
profitable cargoes for Boston merchants Gazette, in a black-bordered special issue. GEORGE WASHINGTON
– slaves. In the 18th century some If the strategists in London chose to block
250,000 slaves from west and central Boston alone has seven newspapers, and this manifest destiny, they were either
Africa are transported to America. Americans are avid readers — a legacy stupid or sinister— plotting to reserve
First Thanksgiving from the first Puritan settlers. Within the bounty of the American interior for
Most of the captives are sold to planta- days, amplified by the newspaper reports, themselves!
The rival Narranganssett tribe threatens tion owners further south, but not all. most of America has heard about the
both allies, putting the future of Plym- There are nearly 50,000 slaves in the Massacre. DELEGATE
outh in danger. They plan a preemp- Northern colonies. One tenth of Boston’s In the course of our inquiry, we find many
tive strike to save their new world from population is black–some slave, and In 1773, the Boston Gazette breaks an- infringements and violations of [our]
destruction. some free. other story that will move America closer rights, which... demonstrate a system
to rebellion — and Paul Revere spreads formed to enslave America!
It was resolved to send… 14 men, well With 4,000 British troops quartered in a Party is direct action by Boston radicals JOHN ADAMS
armed, and to fall upon them in the night. A military action... would make a wound
The Captain gave charge to let none pass which would never be healed...
The Pilgrims are idealists – but they are Across New England weapons are col-
also pragmatists. They have struck a lected and stored.
deal with Wampanoag, and they follow
through with it. This alliance secures Back in Massachusetts, at five in the
their future. morning of April 19, 1775, six miles
from Concord, the Lexington militia led
PAGE  / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

EDWARD WINSLOW by Captain John Parker intercepts the

We have found the Indians very faithful in British troops. Most of the men are dairy
their Covenant of Peace with us... They are farmers and artisans, but the company
people without any religion, or knowledge also includes freemen and slaves.
of any God, yet very trustie, quick of ap-
prehension, ripe-witted [and] just...
Stand your ground; don’t fire unless fired
The feast we know of today as Thanks-
upon, but if they mean to have a war, let it
giving marks the start of fifty years of
begin here.
peace that will transform New England
and America.
Among those gathered is Prince Es-

Washington appointed Commander in Chief Continued on page 5

A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
British soldiers prepare to take New York. On horseback, George Washington shouts
The five largest British ships carry more at his retreating soldiers, watching his
firepower than all the American guns in army collapse in the face of vast British
the city. firepower and exclaims, “Good God! Have
I got troops such as these!”
The battle for New York begins with
cannon fire that strikes the city streets. They make their way back to safety along
Washington’s army is forced to retreat an ancient Native American track that
from the hamlet of Brooklyn. Through will later become known as Broadway.
August and September the city awaits the
final assault. On the 20th of September, New York,
now in British hands, burns. Over two
At daybreak on September 15th, a mile days, 500 homes are destroyed. Almost
north of New York City, inexperienced 3,000 Americans are taken prisoner. Over
American soldiers prepare to defend the next two years, two thirds of these
Manhattan Island. men will die in British prison ships in
New York harbor.
A 16-year old Patriot soldier New York is lost to an overwhelming
John Adams, Morris, Hamilton & Jefferson It was quite a dark night, and at daybreak, British force.
the first thing that ‘saluted our eyes,’ was
tabrook, who will be the first African are created equal, that they are endowed all the four ships at anchor, with springs VALLEY FORGE, PA CAMP,
American to fight in the Revolution. by their Creator with certain unalienable upon their cables, and within musket shot January 1778
Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty of us. The Phoenix lying a little quartering, Washington must hold his army together
From nowhere an unidentified shot rings and the pursuit of Happiness.” and her stern towards me, I could read her through a winter that will test his leader-
out, triggering confusion. Nervous red- name as distinctly as though I had been ship and the resilience of his army.
coats and militiamen fire their weapons. Now, American soldiers know what they directly under her stern...
Heavily outnumbered, the militia break are fighting for. Just 18 miles from Philadelphia, where
and run. A few only get a step British soldiers are billeted in
or two before they are shot comfort, lies the winter quarters
down. of the American Continental
Army. Washington has moved
No one knows who fired the his troops here to ensure the
first shot at Lexington. British don’t raid the fertile
lands of central Pennsylvania.
The militiamen run for it. Both
sides open fire and then the Albigence Waldo, a surgeon in
redcoats charge with bayonets. the Connecticut line, arrives
In just thirty seconds, eight with the first troops at Valley
militiamen are killed, and ten Forge in December, and watches
are wounded. Prince Estabrook, a crisis develop.
hit in the shoulder, survives.
INVASION OF NEW YORK The army, which has been
CITY surprisingly healthy [...], now
On June 29th, 1776 the City of begins to grow sickly from the [...]
New York prepares for the big- fatigues they have suffered this
gest land invasion in American campaign.
history. A mile out of town,
Kips Bay, at the end of modern In a freezing winter, Washing-
East 33rd Street, will be at the ton’s men have built 900 huts
frontline of any invasion. Valley Forge 1777 in just 40 days. Each small hut
houses 12 men. Over 2,000 of

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 

On the 1st of July, British warships gather The British are so close that the Ameri- Washington’s army are sick. Mites spread
off New York. On the same day in Phila- JOHN ADAMS cans can hear every word the sailors camp fever or typhus. Typhoid and dys-
delphia a historic meeting takes place, as We are in the midst of revolution, the most speak. entery result from unclean water.
50 democratically elected delegates from complete, unexpected, and remarkable of
each of the 13 colonies debate the future any in the history of the world.’ Five ships launch a ferocious bombard- They have run out of meat, and are down
of America. ment of the defenses at Kip’s Bay. In just to their last 25 barrels of flour. They
JOHN DICKINSON one hour, the British fleet fires over 2,500 barely survive on ‘firecake’, a mixture of
On July 2nd, the delegates vote to “dis- We are about to brave the storm in a skiff cannonballs at point-blank range. A bread and water. One fifth of the soldiers
solve the connection with Britain” and made of paper! terrifying second barrage of cannon fire are without shoes. Over the course of the
two days later they approve a declaration blasts away. winter, some 2,500 men will die — 20%
of the independence of the United States Within a month of the first arrival, 400 of the army.
of America. It starts with “We hold these more ships will appear, in what will be the Four thousand British troops storm onto
truths to be self—evident, that all men largest armada until D-Day. Some 32,000 Manhattan Island.
Continued on page 6
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

PLUMB MARTIN and food stations. The rules and order The Americans unleash a heavy bom-
We were now in a truly forlorn condi- he brings to Valley Forge will become the bardment, but behind these defenses lay
tion — no clothing, no provisions and as standard for the American army for the 9,000 well-drilled, battle-hardened British
disheartened as need be. Our prospect was next 150 years. troops. However, the security of Yorktown
indeed dreary. lies with two smaller fortifications. If the
Von Steuben handpicks 100 men for soldiers can break through British lines
Two years into the war, each state training. Once trained and drilled, each and take these, then the British army will
struggles to fill its quotas for the Conti- of them will train their own hundred be left defenseless. A force of 400 Ameri-
nental Army. Enthusiasm for the conflict men. Within months, a new discipline can infantrymen and sappers prepare to
has ebbed. The farmers, craftsmen and spreads throughout Washington’s Conti- descend on the British redoubt.
artisans who made up the rebel army nental Army.
in Boston and New York have returned Sappers cut through the defenses. As the
to their farms and businesses. Convicts The most important skill Von Steuben American soldiers storm the redoubt,
recently released from jail, freed slaves, brings to the American army is the deadly with muskets unloaded to avoid friendly
and the destitute now fill the ranks, along use of the bayonet. On a flat piece of fire, the bayonet becomes the key to their
with immigrants just off the boat, with ground, soldiers charge with bayonets victory.
no property and no prospects. Many are at straw-filled bags on posts. In the final
from England. They may even face their reckoning, this simple weapon will turn Over the last 6 years, leadership, training,
former neighbors in battle. the tide of the American Revolution. weapons and intelligence have all proved
vital. The Americans have done the
WASHINGTON Baron Von Steuben BATTLE OF YORKTOWN impossible. America is the only country
To see Men without Clothes to cover their or Austrians, or French. You say to your In July 1781, a French fleet blasts Britain’s to win independence from the British
nakedness, without Blankets to lay on, soldier, ‘Do this,’ and he [does] it. But I am warships out of Chesapeake Bay, and Empire in war.
without Shoes, by which their Marches obliged to say [to the American soldier], forces a British army back into the city of
might be traced by the Blood from their feet ‘This is the reason why you ought to do Yorktown, Virginia. Liberty comes at a price. The new nation
is a mark of Patience and obedience which that’; and then he does it.” is $150 million in debt. Almost 30,000
in my opinion can scarce be paralleled. On the night of October 14th, in fortifica- American men have lost their lives in the
Within days, Von Steuben introduces tions surrounding the city, 400 American struggle for independence.
But over the hard winter at Valley Forge, new standards of hygiene that help to soldiers await the order to storm British
the type of young man who now makes reduce disease and infection. The men lines. It’s the final push for Washington’s
up his army works in Washington’s favor. dig latrines 300 yards from their quarters army.
They are used to hardship. Everywhere he
goes, men in the poorest state of health
stand to attention. As a leader, Washing-
ton inspires loyalty. Against all the odds
he keeps this starving army together.

Throughout the war Washington picks
unconventional men whose talents he
trusts and places them in positions of au-
thority. In February 1778, he introduces
a new recruit to the Continental Army, a
Prussian army officer named Baron von

Von Steuben’s task is to transform a

ragtag army into a highly trained profes-
sional fighting force capable of taking on
the British army on their own terms. By
PAGE  / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

this stage of the war, guerilla tactics are

no longer enough.

He drills into Washington’s men the strict

discipline of the European military ma-
chine. But the freethinking Americans are
unlike any soldiers he’s trained before.

The genius of this nation is not in the least
to be compared with that of the Prussians,
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
the uncharted territories on a 4,000-mile will one day be the state of Wyoming.
journey west by keelboat, on foot, and Within twenty years, this will be the route
in dugout canoes. In October 1805 they for thousands of wagon trains, connect-
reach the mouth of the Columbia River, ing the east and west coasts of America.
becoming the first Americans to reach the
Pacific Ocean overland. As the sea mist As Jed Smith enters California, pioneers
lifts, Clark records in his journal: Ocean flood into Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana and
in view! O — the joy! Illinois.

In the Rocky Mountains, in the footsteps The government encourages western ex-
of Lewis and Clark, comes a new breed of pansion with a fire sale on land. Regular
pioneer: fur trappers. In October 1822, plots sell for just $2 an acre. The offer of
a party of trappers led by 22-year-old cheap land draws 100,000 pioneers a year.
Jedediah Smith ventures deep into the What their money buys is a wilderness.
Rocky Mountains on a journey that will
shape the story of the American West. In Late summer and early autumn brings
the six months since they left St Louis, hot weather and heavy rainfall. With the
traveling up the Missouri river, their boat heat come mosquitoes and the sweat-
Cumberland Gap
has sunk and they have fought off a Sioux ing fever: malaria. The Midwest, from
A meteorite the size of Manhattan beyond the Appalachians, and open new war party. Indiana south to Louisiana, is rife with
slammed into the Appalachian Moun- lands for settlers. The path Boone opens malaria. A third of the population is
tains three hundred million years ago. will allow the new nation to spread west. Life expectancy for a mountain man is bedridden at any time.
The gap it cut becomes the seam through It’s wide enough for a packhorse. But low — one in five will be dead within
which America spreads westward. soon it will be graded for wagons. a year. For trappers like Jed Smith, the By 1820, over a quarter of the popula-
profits to be made in the mountains are tion of the United States lives west of the
In 1775, America is not yet a nation. Thir- In the next twenty years, 200,000 Ameri- worth the risks. Appalachians. In 1800, Ohio, Illinois and
teen colonies of just two and half million cans will flood along the new road and Indiana were 90% forest. By 1870, many
people huddle east of the Appalachians into the West. The fur of the American beaver is the settlers turn this forest into farmland.
on a strip of land just 300 miles wide. most valuable luxury commodity in
The Shawnee know what happens when America. Used to make felt hats, a single The settlers’ connection to the outside
The mountains form a mighty barrier white men are hungry for land. Their an- pelt fetches $4, twice what a skilled world is the great rivers of the Midwest.
to the interior. No colonists live beyond cestors were pushed out of Virginia and worker back east can make in a day. Smith
them. But for thousands of years, wild Delaware in a bloody war with American holds the record for the greatest haul of In 1828, a young man named Abraham
animals have migrated west to the salt colonists 100 years ago. They will fight beaver: 668 pelts in a single season, worth Lincoln (later, he would be become the
licks of Kentucky through a pass carved fiercely to keep colonists out of their new $7,000 in the markets of St. Louis. nation’s 16th President) sets off on an
long ago by a meteorite: the Cumberland territories. epic 1,200-mile journey down river to
Gap. Smith discovers more than beaver. New Orleans. He carries corn to trade,
Boone knows the risks of trespassing on Guided by the Crow, he rides through and the pioneer’s staple goods: corn-fed
This is Shawnee land. For generations, the Shawnee land. Two years ago, he saw his the South Pass on the way to becoming pigs, and corn distilled as whiskey.
Shawnee have hunted here, and fought eldest son James tortured and killed in the first American to enter California
for these rich hunting grounds with their these same forests by warriors. But even overland. At 7,000 feet above sea level, The Mississippi is the central artery of the
neighbors, the Cherokee the death of a son hasn’t dampened his the South Pass cuts straight through the continent. Fed with water from 31 states,
frontier spirit. Boone and his men will peaks of the Rocky Mountains in what it’s over 2,000 miles in length. But the wa-
In March 1775, Daniel Boone, a hunter reach the Kentucky River — and found
from Pennsylvania, leads a band of fron- the first settlements west of the Appala-
tiersmen through the Appalachian forest chians.
on a mission that will change America
forever. In two weeks, they cut through In just four years the Shawnee will lose
one hundred miles of forest and dense their hold on Kentucky, and move further
undergrowth to blaze a trail through the west into Missouri.
Cumberland Gap.
Tales of Boone’s exploits sell out across
DANIEL BOONE the new American nation and his fame

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 

The aspect of these cliffs is so wild and spreads as a “Columbus of the Woods”
horrid. The spectator is apt to imagine that leading settlers into the promised land
nature had formerly suffered some violent of the west. This is the beginning of the
convulsion, and this are the dismembered conquest of the West.
remains of the dreadful shock!
In 1803, the young nation cuts one of
What they are doing is illegal. All settle- the best land deals in history, and buys
ment west of the mountains is forbid- 800,000 square miles at just three cents an
den by royal decree of King George III. acre. The Louisiana Purchase adds to the
But the colonists are fighting for their United States all the former Spanish lands
independence. Boone’s mission is driven between the Mississippi and the Rockies.
by that struggle. He’s bankrolled by
wealthy Virginians patriots defying the LEWIS AND CLARK
The Alamo
royal decree. They are determined to push Meriwether Lewis and William Clark map Continued on page 8
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times


Wagon Train

ter only flows one way. For generations, In 1836, Texas is a province of Mexico. INDIAN LANDS WAGON TRAIN
farmers transport their goods south by For fifteen years American settlers have In the east, eyes turn on pockets of land In May 1846, a wagon train rolls out of
raft, sell their goods and rafts — and then taken up generous land grants from the still controlled by Native American tribes. Missouri on a 2,000-mile journey to the
walk hundreds of miles home. Mexicans. The pioneers holed up inside Since the first decades of colonization, a Mexican state of California. At the walk-
the Alamo are mostly young married hunger for land pushes white settlers into ing speed of an ox the journey will take
Steamboats, which can make the journey men and their families who have come to conflict with Native Americans. five months.
back upstream, transform the Midwest, Texas to farm and ranch cattle. They’ve
revolutionizing trade and settlement. A braved spring tornadoes, autumn hur- Over the past 50 years, the Cherokee have It’s a journey to a Promised Land that will
steamboat can carry 230 tons of freight. A ricanes, big cats, scorpions and a hundred taken up many of the customs of their test the endurance of American pioneers
flatboat carries just thirty. species of snake — all for the promise of neighbors, raising corn, tending livestock to its limits.
land. But now Mexico wants Texas back. — some even own slaves. But specula-
By the 1830s, 1,200 steamboats head up tors keen to get hold of their land argue RICHARD DANA
the Mississippi each year — and with It takes just an hour for the Mexican army the Native Americans must be relocated The climate is better than any in the world,
them, thousands more settlers. In the fifty to take the Alamo. The men who survive to protect their culture, preserving them free of diseases; the waters are filled with
years after Independence, the population the assault are executed. Only the women from too much ‘civilization’. fish, the plains with cattle, and corn yields
of the United States increases by a third and children are spared. Wounded in the from seventy to eighty fold. In the hands of
every decade. In 1821, there are ten mil- leg, her husband dead, Susannah is sent American opinion is divided. The order, an enterprising people, what a country this
lion Americans. By 1836, there are sixteen by the Mexicans to warn other Texans of promoted by President Andrew Jackson, might be!
million. the consequences of defiance. passes Congress by a single vote. Their
property is divided by lottery, while Although California belongs to Mexico,
THE ALAMO Instead, her story spurs the pioneers to Cherokee families are forced west towards American pioneers now head west for this
Barricaded inside an old Spanish mission victory. “Remember the Alamo!” is the reservations in Oklahoma. promised land in the largest organized
in San Antonio, Texas, in March 1836, rallying cry for Texan independence. migration in American history.
land-hungry pioneers are about to pay Within a month, the Alamo is avenged The march of a thousand miles, across
the highest price of all. American mother, — and in May 1836, the Lone Star Re- dangerous rivers, becomes known as the For one of the first groups of pioneers,
Susanna Dickinson, shelters with her public is born. “Trail of Tears”. the journey starts in Nebraska in May
two-year-old daughter Angelina inside 1846. Ahead of them is a 2,000-mile trek
the sacristy of the Alamo. In all, 189 With independence, Americans flood into SALLY FEARNEY across some of the challenging terrain in
PAGE  / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

American pioneers barricade themselves Texas, tempted by offers of land on an Many fell by the wayside, too faint with the world: 800 miles across the tree-
against Mexican soldiers. They’re out- astonishing scale. Single men receive 640 hunger or too weak to keep up with the rest. less expanse of America’s Great Plains
numbered twenty to one. acres; families twice that. Married women The aged, feeble, or sick were left to perish. in scorching sun, sudden storms and
and squatters have property rights. Only a bowl of water was left within reach, tornados: across the rough high passes
Among the men is Susanna’s husband thus were they left to suffer and die alone. of the towering Rocky Mountain range;
Almaron, a blacksmith. Another is Davy When Texas enters the union, it measures across the scorching expanses of the Utah
Crockett. Two months before, Crockett a quarter of a million square miles in size Of the 15,000 Cherokee forced west, at Salt Flats; through the waterless desert of
called Texas: The richest country in the — bigger than France — subdivided into least 4,000 die on the march, an episode the Great Basin; then on to their final and
world. Good land and plenty of timber… 250 counties, some larger than Connecti- in the struggle for land that even some of greatest obstacle, the mountains of the
good range, clear water and every appear- cut. the soldiers who take part find shameful. Sierra Nevada — before the blizzards of
ance of good health, and game plenty. winter block their way.

Continued on page 9
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times

Gold Rush

In twenty years, half a million people will elsewhere on earth. JEAN-NICOLAS PERLOT here costs $2, compared to 25 cents back
make the journey west. Over 20,000 will Wait until you have [lived] like me... east.
die along the way: ten graves for every Over hundreds of thousands of years, as spending the day in a ditch, your pick in
mile. the peaks of the Sierra Nevada pushed your hand, the night under a live oak, Fewer than one in twenty of all the gold
upwards, ice, rain and wind eroded the cooking your own stew... Then you will see miners in California ever make a profit.
Sixty per cent of the men heading west rocky peaks. Water washed mountain what becomes of your coat, your hair, your
are farmers, looking for fertile land on debris along rivers and streams. Flakes beard, your face... under these conditions a After seven years of hard work, Perlot,
the Pacific coast. Others are escaping the of gold, seven times heavier than quartz, man... can well look like a savage. like many others, gives up his dreams of
diseases that plague life in the Midwest. accumulated as nuggets in the riverbeds untold wealth and moves on to another
of California. As miners compete to find the precious life.
Some in the party are Mormons, escap- nuggets, hand-held panning gives way to
ing religious persecution. Over 70,000 In March 1848, in the bed of the new frontier technology. Sloping funnels But the dreams of these pioneers trans-
Mormons will head west over a quarter California River, a carpenter, James need teams to operate. Long lines of form California. Their mining shanties
century, starting a new life on the salt flats Marshall, uncovers this secret treasure, sluice boxes rework the waters to get the become cities: Sacramento, Stockton,
of Utah. and launches a gold rush that transforms finer nuggets earlier miners missed. Modesto, Fresno. By 1860, there are
California. 400,000 Californians.
As the wagons head into the mountains, But year on year, as extraction becomes
weight is the defining factor. Emigrants War with Mexico delivers California into harder, the profits to be made by each In 1850, Perlot described San Francisco
carry the tools and seeds they’ll need to the hands of the United States. Just a new prospectors drop. as ‘fifteen adobe houses and some tents’.
start a new life, but guidebooks advise week after gold is found, Mexico agrees to Seven years on, it’s become a city.
them to carry only the essentials. recognize California as part of the U.S. in The first miners could dig up as much as
return for $15 million dollars. $1,000 worth of gold a day. By the end JEAN-NICOLAS PERLOT
LANSFORD HASTINGS of 1848, average profits have dropped to Already it has its paved streets, its [...]
The loading of the wagons should consist It’s one of the best bargains in history. $20 a day. By the time Perlot gets to Bear sewers, its gas and its trams. The streets, the
mostly of provisions. Do not burden Within ten years, California will yield Valley, most prospectors take home just wharves [...], the public squares and the
yourselves with furniture or beds. Bring a over half a billion dollars worth of gold. $3 a day. promenades [full of] people and merchan-
few light trunks or very light boxes to pack In two years, the population of California dise. How many changes!
clothes in. No heavy articles except a few leaps from 15,000 to 100,000. Most new- It’s still 3 times the average wage back

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 

cooking vessels. comers are male, armed, and under thirty. east. But the men making the real money Seventy-five years have passed since
in Gold Rush California are not miners, Daniel Boone blazed the first trail west
GOLD RUSH In November 1851, rumors of a single pit but the businessmen who supply them. across the Appalachians. In just four
Deep beneath the Sierra Nevada moun- yielding thousands of dollars worth of years between 1845 and 1849 the U.S.A.
tain rock lie riches that will draw tens of gold draws hundreds of miners to Bear In 1853, German immigrant Levi Strauss doubles in size, gaining 1,200,000 square
thousands more to California: Gold. Valley. The famous ‘pit of profit’ is only 6 sets up in California and makes a fortune miles. The nation spreads across vast new
feet wide, 15 feet long, and 10 feet deep. supplying clothing to miners, who espe- territories: from the Pacific Northwest to
A hundred million years ago, magma in But for 12 Mexican prospectors, it yields cially like the durable canvas pants that the southern deserts of New Mexico and
the earth’s crust cooled and solidified to $22,000 worth of gold. are known as Levi’s. Arizona, pushing its border with Mexico
form the rocks of the Sierra Nevada. In to the Rio Grande River.
the volcanic cauldron, a unique element, Within a month of the strike, Jean-Nich- Traders can charge what they like. Picks,
gold, was laid down in veins of quartz in olas Perlot joins 400 prospectors working pans and shovels sell for $200. A knife
concentrations 200,000 times higher than small claims beside the famous pit. costs $25, a woolen shirt $50. Breakfast
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

Once cotton was a luxury fabric. In the ders are common because of the lint and daily in New York carrying cheap manu-
early 1800s, industrially-produced cotton dust. The women also battle boredom. factured goods and cheap immigrant
becomes cheap and available to all. It is labor. If Clinton can work out how to
the first great consumer product of the HARRIET ROBINSON ship these goods out to the Midwest, New
industrial revolution. Reading books on factory time was against York will become the lynchpin of trade.
the rules. But we hid books in apron Everything will pass through New York.
Britain invented the power loom and its pockets and wastebaskets. Often we tore DeWitt’s idea is about to redraw the trade
technology is a closely guarded secret. books apart and read them a page at a map of America.
England makes it a crime for workers to time. Sometimes we pasted poems to the
immigrate to America — in case their windows or on our looms to memorize. Cotton Gin In 1824 a ravine is blasted through the
expertise immigrates with them. — working solidly for 14 hours. hard blue limestone at Lockport, NY.
Despite the harsh working conditions, Great chunks of earth and shards of lime-
By 1813, the secret’s out. Artisan Samuel Lowell offers women a new intellec- That’s not enough to feed the cotton mills stone fly through the air. A group of Irish
Slater and industrial spy Francis Cabot tual independence. They devour novels across the Atlantic in Britain, which are laborers seek shelter beneath their shovels
Lowell bring the spinning machine and — reading them by the light of whale oil relentlessly devouring America’s exports as rocks rain down like deadly hail. This is
the power loom home to America. And lamps — and start their own newspaper, of raw cotton. Southern farmers must the beginning of the Erie Canal.
America is about to give Britain a run for the Lowell Offering. find a way to clean the cotton faster. The
its money. answer lies in the processing powers of America is building one of the most
In 1836, 1,500 mill girls go out on strike a simple mechanical device, the Cot- ambitious engineering projects of the
Cotton drives America’s industrial revolu- to protect their wages against a rent hike ton Gin. Two contra-rotating drums century — a project that will propel the
tion. By the middle of the century there to be deducted from their pay. For the with teeth to part the short cotton fibers nation into the modern world. The Erie
are 500 mills feeding into America’s first time in America, the voices of work- from the seeds. Gin is short for “engine”. Canal is built by 9,000 workers who dig
insatiable export industry. Lowell, Massa- ingwomen are being heard. Overnight, it revolutionizes the cotton
chusetts is the most successful mill town industry in the South.
Oh! Isn’t it a pity, such a Production is increased by 500% — in
pretty girl as I one day, one man can now clean 50
Should be sent to the pounds of raw cotton. The cotton gin
factory to pine away and transforms the economy of the Southern
die? states. The cotton crop explodes almost
ten-fold from just over 300,000 bales in
These women will go 1820 to nearly 3 million in 1850.
on to win rights that Erie Canal at Lockport, NY
would have been un- America overtakes India as the cotton
imaginable a generation producer of the world. out eleven million cubic yards of rock
earlier. — four times the volume of the great
Plantation owners build great houses, pyramid of Giza. Stretching 364 miles
SLAVE ECONOMY from Lake Erie to the Hudson River, the
Lowell Factory In the South, most of
designed to make a statement. Their
canal will be the world’s longest, connect-
aristocracy is built upon slavery. Owning
the economy is tied 20 or more slaves put a man into the elite ing the agricultural wealth of the Midwest
in America. Called “The City of Spindles,” up in slaves. By 1850 over $2 billion is — the “planter class”. One man, Nathaniel with New York — the gateway to the
Lowell produces over a million yards of invested in slaves — the equivalent of $60 Heyward, owns nearly 2,000. Atlantic and America’s rapidly growing
cloth every week. It outstrips the mills billion today. export trade.
of Manchester, England to become the Powered by slavery, driven by the popu-
world’s biggest producer of textiles. Slaves are expensive, but the crops larity of cotton, the economy of the South America lacks highly trained civil en-
they are forced to grow are extremely booms. gineers. What it does have is the labor
Lowell is a world of opportunity for profitable for plantation owners. The of thousands of new immigrants to the
women who would previously have been most lucrative crop of all is cotton. In LEAD-UP TO THE CIVIL WAR young nation. At Lockport, most of the
tied to the family. Of the 18,000 people the agricultural South, cotton is “white Even as the South sows the seeds of its workers are Irish. Newspapers hail their
who work here, eighty five percent are gold”. It spreads west into the Mississippi fortune, it is harvesting the results of 60 achievement.
single women aged between 15 and 25. delta, where it thrives in the rich alluvial years of human bondage, which will ulti-
For the first time, large numbers of young soils. It creates and supports lifestyles of mately lead to the bloodiest conflict ever NEWSPAPER ATTRIBUTION
women earn their own wages — between unimaginable wealth and opulence. It’s to be fought on American soil. There are several types of power working
PAGE 10 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

$6 and $10 a week. a different world from the urban and at the fabric of the Republic. Water power,
industrializing North. America produces more raw cotton than steam power and Irish power. This last
Some of the Lowell girls are even younger. it can process. Ships laden with cotton works hardest of all.
Harriet Robinson is ten years old when The backbreaking work of slaves makes travel from New Orleans to New York.
she starts working in the mill’s spinning cotton harvest possible – it is a system of From there fast packet ships transport the In America, these men earn five times
room. enormous brutality and violence against cotton to England where it is spun and what they could make back home. But it’s
humanity. woven. The finished cloth is shipped back a risky business. Over a thousand men
They work a 14-hour shift from five in to America. The cotton triangle makes die of swamp fever cutting through the
the morning until seven at night. The Cotton is notoriously hard to process. New York America’s premier port. Montezuma Marsh. Now they face their
average week is 73 hours. Windows are The first job is cleaning the raw cotton. most perilous challenge: blasting through
kept shut — even in summer — so that Seeds are embedded in the short, dense But Mayor – soon to be Governor the eighty-foot limestone Niagara Escarp-
the dry heat doesn’t destroy the cotton cotton fibers and have to be pulled out by – DeWitt Clinton of New York has bigger ment.
threads. In the winter, the air is clogged hand. It’s a slow process. One slave cleans plans. He wants to make New York City
with the fumes of gas lamps. Lung disor- only one pound of raw cotton in a day the financial hub of America. Ships arrive Continued on page 11
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
and spiritual songs to signal danger. On Election Day, Kansas votes to enter
the union as a slave state. But the refer-
HARRIET TUBMAN endum has been rigged by pro-slavers
“I’ll meet you in the morning, I’m bound and freesoilers have boycotted the vote.
for the promised land.” Tensions between the two factions esca-
late, leading to an attack by pro-slavers
“The Promised Land” is Tubman’s ironic on Lawrence, Kansas, a stronghold of
code word for the slave-owning Southern freestaters.
States. Her own codename is “Moses”. She
always travels alone. Her specialty is mass JOHN BROWN
escapes, guiding groups of up to 10 slaves We must fight fire with fire, strike terror in
to freedom. the hearts of the pro-slavery people. Some-
thing must be done to show these barbar-
The journey north from Maryland to ians that we too have rights.
Pennsylvania is 90 miles across country.
Always made at night using the North
Star as a guide, the journey takes between
five days and three weeks.
Harriet Tubman
Tubman hides her charges in swamps and
into America’s biggest and wealthiest city. woods. Cold, hungry and in peril, slaves
There’s only one way through — black sometimes feel that they cannot continue.
powder. Black powder is a highly com- The Wall Street stock market takes off They want to go back
bustible mix of nitrate, charcoal and — fueled by the success of the Erie Canal.
sulfur. Nitrate provides the oxygen to Tubman had a strict line for faint-hearts.
make it ignite, charcoal fuels the burn and SLAVERY MUST END “Move — or die!” Radical abolitionist John Brown, who sees
sulfur increases the speed of combustion. America is a vast new country, rich in re- himself as “God’s chosen instrument,”
sources and undergoing a seismic change Despite the $10,000 dollar reward on her is prepared to exact violent retribution.
Getting the mix right is a matter of life — in trade, transport and manufactur- head, Tubman returns behind enemy On May 23rd, the day after the sack of
— or death. The black powder used ing. Its rapid industrialization is quickly lines no less than 13 times and personally Lawrence, he selects a band of seven men
to blast through this limestone has to turning it into one of the most affluent liberates 70 slaves. She never gets caught to join him on a secret and bloody mis-
contain exactly the right level of nitrate. nations on earth. But its new wealth is and never loses a “passenger”. sion deep into a pro-slavery settlement. A
Too little and the rock simply fractures. based on an old system — slavery — and night and morning of frenzied bloodshed
Too much and the explosion is impos- slaves and abolitionists are fighting back. During this period up to 2,000 slaves follow.
sible to control. The fuse is a crude twist escape every year. The South is about to
of brown paper. No one can predict the All black Americans, slave or free, must take drastic action to get its slaves back. Brown’s victims, although they supported
timing of the explosion. carry documents proving who they are or the pro-slavery movement, did not own
to whom they belong. Frederick Doug- In 1850, a new law is passed that catapults slaves and had nothing to do with the
EDNA SMITH lass, one of the lucky ones, escapes slavery the slave culture of the South onto the looting of Lawrence.
On some days, the list of killed and wound- and flees north, finding refuge in a safe doorstep of the North — and brings both
ed would read like a Battlefield. If the fuse house, as a “passenger” of the Under- to the brink of civil war. Under the Fugi- Violent eruptions in Kansas continue
went out or burned slowly, they would rush ground Railroad. tive Slave Act, the punishment for helping for two years after the massacre. “Bloody
back recklessly to see what was the matter a slave was 6 months in prison — or a Kansas” sees each side murder over 200
… often blowing on them to revive the dy- FREDERICK DOUGLASS fine of $1,000. of their fellow Americans. Kansas is hav-
ing fire. Many a poor fellow was blown into My whole future depended upon the deci- ing it’s own civil war. Soon the whole of
fragments this way. sion of this conductor: This moment of time Even free blacks can be coerced into America will be dragged into the fight.
was one of the most anxious I ever expe- slavery. They are powerless to defend
THOMAS NICHOLS rienced. Had the conductor looked closely themselves in court and find it almost
The Irish laborers grew so reckless of life at the paper, he could not have failed to impossible to prove their free status. Un- THE CIVIL WAR
that at the signal for blasting, instead discover that it called for a very different der this law, Northerners find themselves November 6th, 1860 brings Election Day,
of running to the shelter … they would looking person from myself, and in that propping up slavery. Abolitionists are on which hangs the fate of the Union.
jut hold their shovels over their heads to case it would have been his duty to arrest incensed. It’s the trigger that catapults the The South threatened to secede if Lincoln
keep off the shower of small stones and be me on the instant. anti-slavery movement into the main- wins. But the North embraces Lincoln,
crushed every now and then by a big one. stream. who wins by half a million votes, with

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 11

The Underground Railroad is a secret 98% of his support from the North.
After eight years of digging and at a cost network of people — mostly free blacks, Two different Americas — united in pros-
of thousands of lives and the equivalent but also white abolitionists — who perity but divided by culture — face each Three months later South Carolina
of $4.5 billion, the Erie Canal opens. help fugitive slaves on their journey to other across a growing gulf. secedes. The rest of the South soon fol-
freedom in the North and West. Support- lows. In February 1861, the Confederacy
It is ten times longer than any other canal ers open their houses — “stations” — to As the nation expands, new states enter is born.
in the world. Where it once took three fugitives on the run. the Union. Opinions clash: should they
weeks and cost $120 to send a ton of flour be slave or free? In 1854 with Kansas Lincoln’s victory makes war inevitable.
from Buffalo to New York City, it now One of the most famous conductors is poised to enter the Union, the battle is He pledges to preserve the Union and
takes 8 days and costs $6. The Erie Canal Harriet Tubman, who escaped slavery drawn. Abolitionist Freestaters from New is willing to fight for it. Secession is the
connects New York to the West provid- in 1849. Now she risks her life to return England and Pro-Slavery settlers from trigger but the cause at stake will become
ing a cheap and easy route for goods south and liberate others. She uses every Missouri rush in to try to sway the vote. slavery. The war that John Brown pre-
and people. DeWitt Clinton’s critics are trick she knows: disguises, concealed dicted finally arrives.
silenced. The canal transforms New York identity, coded messages. She uses hymns
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

In 1862, America’s new industrial might on the Union army. Over 10,000 are killed
produces a new weapon that changes the or wounded. The 5th New York regiment
face of warfare: the Minie ball. Invented loses more men in ten minutes at Bull
in 1848 by a French ballistics expert, this Run than are lost by any other regiment
perfect sphere of soft lead travels faster during the entire Civil War. The Second
through the barrel of a gun than any Battle of Bull Run is Lee’s greatest victory
previous bullet, giving rifle muskets twice so far. His army is now just a day’s march
the range as the old smoothbore muskets. from Washington D.C. and the heart of
And they can be reloaded twice as fast the Union.
— the best soldiers can fire a minie ball
once every thirty seconds. Two weeks later, Lee’s army of over 51,000
marches towards Sharpsburg, on the
As it rotates along the barrel’s rifled banks of the Antietam River in Maryland.
grooves, the minie ball picks up momen- They head right into the midst of Union
tum and strikes with maximum velocity. territory, a risky move. Up to now, Lee’s
When the target is a human body, the soft armies have fought on their own soil.
minie ball flattens and spins, and tears a Now, they go on the offensive and take
terrible swathe through muscle and bone. the fight north.

At the second battle of Bull Run, August Although his men are exhausted, Lee
1862, both Union and Confederate forces is bent on swift and decisive action. He President Abraham Lincoln
are armed with this devastating new wants to capitalize on his victory and win
technology. Minie balls are responsible the war before the North has time to har- EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION from the South and joins a Union regi-
for the vast majority of soldiers’ wounds ness its industrial might. Antietam becomes a turning point. The ment. My Dear Wife. I am now in safety
in the Civil War. Union armies suffer over 12,000 casual- in the 14th Regiment of Brooklyn. This
There’s another reason to strike now. The ties; the Confederates, 10,000. Neither Day I can address you thank god as a free
In the six months after Lincoln is elected, South hopes that the world’s superpow- side has won. But Lee’s invasion of the man. I had a little trouble in getting away,
eleven southern states secede from the ers, Britain and France, might recognize North has been halted. This gives Lincoln but as the lord led the Children of Israel to
Union and declare independence. The Southern independence in return for leverage that will eventually help free 4 the land of Canaan, so he led me to a land
nation is divided; the industrial North guaranteed supplies of tobacco and cot- million slaves. where freedom will reign in spite of earth
versus the agrarian South. This war is be- ton. To convince Europe that they have and hell...
ing fought on a mammoth scale — larger the strength to go it alone, they need to From the moment war breaks out, slaves
than any war fought on American soil prove their military might. start escaping. They flee to Union lines, John Boston is not a free man yet. Legally
before or since. hoping for refuge. But Lincoln’s first pri- he is contraband — stolen goods — still
Lee believes that if he can win this battle, ority is to preserve the Union, not to end legally the property of his Southern
he can win the war. slavery. To reassure the border slave states owner.
that have not seceded, Lincoln promises
BATTLE OF ANTIETAM that the army will respect the property Three months later, in March 1862, Con-
On September 17,1862, the Battle of An- rights of slaveholders. He instructs his gress finally passes legislation forbidding
tietam becomes the single bloodiest day soldiers to turn away fugitive slaves and Union soldiers from returning fugitive
in American history. return them to their masters. slaves from Confederates states to their
owners, and officially allowing them into
In fields around the Antietam River near Colonel Harris of the 2nd Regiment is Union lines. And soon men like John
Sharpsburg, over 6,000 men lie dead or finding these orders hard to obey. As a Boston will hear news that will change
When war breaks out, Major General dying. In one day, twice as many men are soldier I am compelled to execute an order their lives even more dramatically.
Robert E Lee is offered positions in both killed as in the entire course of the War of which is repugnant to my feelings as a man.
northern and southern armies. A gradu- 1812, the Mexican War and the Spanish- If I remain in the army I have no alterna- On New Year’s Eve 1862, the congregation
ate of West Point Academy and a decorat- American war combined. There are four tive but to execute these orders, or resign. I in Boston’s Tremont Temple awaits an ex-
ed veteran of the Mexican War, Lee comes times as many casualties as will fall on the prefer the latter ... traordinary announcement that has long
from an aristocratic Virginian planter Normandy beaches on June 6th, 1944. been their dream. Abolitionist Frederick
family and owns slaves. He fights for the Union soldiers begin to question the hu- Douglass is amongst them.
South. As commander of the Army of Lee’s army withdraws from the Antietam manity of returning slaves to their mas-
Northern Virginia, he demonstrates de- battlefield, and the Union army is left to ters. Generals justify putting able-bodied FREDERICK DOUGLASS
PAGE 12 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

cisive strategy and gains a psychological deal with the dead. Confederate corpses fugitive slaves to work within the Union Whether we should survive or perish de-
advantage over his Union rivals. are thrown into long trenches, 30 at a camps — depriving the Confederacy of pended in large measure upon the coming
time, while Union corpses are buried in the benefits of slave labor whilst satisfying of this proclamation. There was room to
Lee’s army has been welded into a formi- individual graves, marked where possible. the labor needs within Union lines. doubt and fear. Would it ever come?
dable force through rigid training, strict The soldiers wear no tags to identify them
military discipline and an unshakable so many families will never know how or By law, black men — whether fugitive In September, Lincoln had announced a
self-belief. They have the advantage of where their brothers, sons or fathers die. slaves and freemen — are not allowed to Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
fighting on their own soil and are battle join up. But they are increasingly toler- — declaring that all slaves in areas still
hardened. The Confederate advance has been halted ated — even welcomed — as volunteers. in rebellion on January 1, 1863 would
by the Battle of Antietam. The war has Still, few whites believe that blacks are be forever free. As of New Year’s Day, the
Some 120,000 soldiers fight at the Second now been raging for one and a half years, capable of actually fighting. Emancipation Proclamation is law. From
Battle of Bull Run. Even with fewer men, and it is unclear who will win. the Telegraph office of the War Depart-
the Confederates inflict huge casualties In January 1862, John Boston escapes
Continued on page 13
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
ment, the news is transmitted across Cotton and carpet mills switch to making wounded. Lee’s forces are devastated. He To keep the stories coming there are
America. woolen cloth for uniforms and blankets. has lost a third of his men in his worst 350 special correspondents reporting in
Production more than doubles from defeat of the war. the North, and 150 in the South. Most
The proclamation also announces the peacetime levels. reporters are partial, writing propaganda
acceptance of black men into the Union The Confederates have lost their air of according to which side they are on.
Army and Navy. Former slaves and free Pitchfork manufacturers start making invincibility. Lee has paid the price for his
black men enlist in the thousands. swords. Saw factories churn out sabers. aggressive tactics. Gettysburg cost him Using the 15,000 miles of telegraph wires,
Jewelry workshops craft brass buttons more men than he can afford to lose. He more than 100 million words are filed
JAMES HENRY GOODING for the troops. And a chandelier factory will never again have the confidence to by journalists over four years of conflict,
The American people, as a nation, knew makes cavalry spurs. take the war to Northern soil. feeding an insatiable public appetite for
not what they were fighting for till recently, news. This is the first war of the telegram
and many have different opinions now It’s not just the military hardware. The His only hope that Union politicians will age, and the Union has the technological
as to the ends and results of the contest. North has twice the miles of railroad and grow sick of the bloodshed and come to edge. Telegraph is the e-mail of the era.
Blacks, and especially free blacks, had a locomotives as the South. Goods and terms, but Lincoln is in no mood to ne-
clear duty to liberate their race and dem- troops can be transported quickly around gotiate. A presidential election is looming. The developing technology of photogra-
onstrate that they can become something the whole network, all managed by the And to win the election, he needs to win phy brings images of war home. As many
more than hewers of wood and drawers of Department of War. When it comes to the war — and fast. as 1,500 men and women took photo-
water all their lives. logistics, the North leaves the South graphs of the war and a million photos
standing. While the North suffers more To win the election and save the Union, were produced. Now, pictures of victori-
In July 1863, Union General James Blunt casualties, it starts with a population Lincoln will need to use the full force of ous Union troops at Atlanta sway public
reports: I never saw such fighting as was twice that of the South, and nearly half of the North’s industrial might to crush the opinion in support of Lincoln.
done by the Negro regiment... they make the Southern population are slaves. In a southern rebels.
better soldiers in every respect than any war of attrition, the North will win. Two months later, on November 8,
other troops I have ever had under my Lincoln wins the election by over 400,000
command. General Lee achieved a stunning victory popular votes. For the first time, several
at Chancellorsville, Virginia. He knows states allow soldiers in the field to vote.
As former slaves abandon plantations, the Confederacy cannot win a long war. Over 70% vote for Lincoln.
emancipation deals a heavy blow to the His time is running out. In the summer
economy of the South. of 1863, he moves his army north towards Lincoln is determined to press his vic-
a small Pennsylvania city called Gettys- tory home. Sherman’s scorched earth
NORTH’S INDUSTRIAL ADVANTAGE burg. This is his final chance to break the tactics create a new standard for military
A moral crusade alone will not win the Union forces. operation known as “total war,” in which
war for Lincoln. The North must harness Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman civilians are no longer treated as innocent
its industrial might. THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG bystanders and their property becomes
Out of the 175,000 men gathered in a SHERMAN’S MARCH TO THE SEA fair game. He leads his troops on his
The northern states have over 90 percent vast amphitheatre of war, Lee’s army On September 1st, 1864, Atlanta is infamous “March to the Sea”.
of the country’s manufacturing capacity. numbers 75,000 — three-quarters of the burning. Lincoln’s new general-in-chief,
By the fall of 1862, this vast industrial size of the Union force. But for Lee, it’s Ulysees S. Grant, pursues an aggressive They destroy all that stands in their way:
power shifts to supplying the Union now or never. For three brutal days, Lee new strategy. His armies push deep into sacking villages and burning crops. They
Southern territories, destroying every- cripple the South and destroy every-
thing in their path. thing of military value — including the
Grant appoints General William Sher-
man to take his armies South. Sherman It takes six more months, and the applica-
has made it as far as Atlanta. The city is tion of overwhelming force to convince
surrounded. The Confederate forces are the Confederacy that their cause is lost.
besieged. Their supply lines have been In the last months of attack, the Union
cut and they are vastly outnumbered. Army employs trench warfare, Gatling
Defeated in their attempts to drive off guns, repeater rifles, observation bal-
Sherman’s forces, they have no option but loons, telegraph, and railroad mobility to
to withdraw. First, they torch their own force the Confederacy into unconditional
arsenals and munitions stores to stop surrender.
them falling into Union hands. Then they

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 13

abandon their smoldering city. With the war over, Lincoln makes it
his new mission to heal the country’s
On September 2nd, Union forces take wounds. Let us strive on to finish the work
Atlanta. This is a key victory for Lincoln. we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds;
It proves that his campaign against the to care for him who shall have borne the
South is working, and it boosts his stand- battle, and for his widow, and his orphan
ing in the public eye. — to do all which may achieve and cherish
a just and lasting peace, among ourselves,
The Battle of Gettysburg
The Civil War is the first war to be fought and with all nations.
on the front pages of newspapers as well
armies. Metal working shops become gun throws his men against the Union lines, as on the front lines. It is the first time Lincoln is assassinated just 5 days after
factories. In three years, they produce a trying everything to break them. The that reporters and photographers report Robert E. Lee surrenders.
million and a half rifle muskets. battle turns into a bloodbath. By the end, directly from the battlefields in such
34,000 men from both sides are dead or numbers.
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

In 1850 in America, 23 million people live Stretching 400 miles from North
in 30 states in the eastern half of a con- to South, the Sierra Nevada
tinent. West of the Mississippi Valley lies presents a mighty land barrier
a wilderness. A million square miles of between California from the rest
prairie, towering mountains and deserts of America.
divide the settled east from the new terri-
tory of California. For Judah, the challenge is to map
a route 700 miles long through the
The backbone of the workforce are Chi- Sierras where a railroad can pass.
nese immigrants. No railway in the world crosses
such difficult terrain.
In the middle of the American Civil War,
President Abraham Lincoln makes a bold In the spring of 1862, he finds his
decision: to build a railroad linking the route: through the notorious Don-
east and west coasts of the continent. For ner Pass, where 12 years before the
a decade, Americans agree the railroad Donner Party came to grief. Here,
will happen — but North and South the double range of the Sierras
disagree on the route. Lincoln takes ad- merges, making a route through
vantage of the War to push ahead with his possible. But even so Judah esti-
preferred plan — the northern route. mates the price tag to cut through
these mountains will be over $40 as ‘Railroad Town’. ing to work with the volatile substance.
Until now, there were only two ways million. Over 1,500 Chinese workers die in rock
to reach California. Those who could Penetrating these mountains is a huge falls and explosions, but with nitroglycer-
afford to pay $1,000 could book passage A year later, Lincoln approves Judah’s challenge. Formed from volcanic magma ine, the pace of tunneling picks up from
south by sea to Panama, across land to plan. Work begins. To speed the project, 20 million years ago, the granite of the Si- two to three inches, to two feet a day.
the Pacific, and then north by ship to the President charters two companies. In erra Nevada is embedded with even hard-
San Francisco, a journey of 45 days. But the east, a line begins in Missouri. But the er xenoliths of crystalline rock, trapped in Once through the mountains, track laying
most Americans heading west faced a Central Pacific Railroad Company in the the granite as the magma cools. accelerates to ten miles a day. Each spike
five-month journey through the vast West has the more formidable task. is struck three times; each rail requires ten
emptiness of the interior. On the Great The battle to carve through the moun- spikes. At 400 rails to the mile, hammers
Plains, they endured storms and torna- The project is backed by four Sacra- tains will not be won by steel and man- are swung 21 million times before the
does. They forced ox teams through the mento storekeepers with no experience power alone. It will take a new and deadly railroad is complete. A third of the forests
steep bluffs of the Rockies and pushed of railway construction. Federal funds invention — nitroglycerine. of California are cut down for wood.
forward through the high arid deserts of will reward them with ten square miles
the Great Basin. Their final challenge was of land grants for every mile of track In February 1867, the fifth year of the In April, 1868, the Pacific company
crossing the great mountain range of the laid. But the task ahead is monumental. massive engineering project, progress is crosses the state line to Nevada. In May
Sierra Nevada. Some abandoned all their The Central Pacific Railroad Company slow. But in a specially reinforced labora- 1869, the eastern and western stretches of
possessions and ate their livestock along must level miles of mountain, build miles tory below the Donner Pass, Scottish the railroad meet, and the Transcontinen-
the way, arriving in California broke and of embankments, and cut 15 tunnels chemist James Howden is employed to tal Railroad is complete. For the nation,
barefoot. Twenty thousand died — ten through solid granite. produce a clear yellow liquid that will it’s a day of celebration. The future has
graves for every mile of trail. blast the railroad through the Sierras in arrived.
The bill for bolts and spikes alone, nine record time.
One man’s vision will change all that. hundred tons of them, is two million Before the Transcontinental Railroad,
Theodore Judah, a railroad engineer from dollars. Under the government contract, Nitroglycerine, the precursor to dyna- it took months of hardship to cross the
Connecticut, comes to California to build every length of track, every steel bolt, mite, is brewed from three inert in- continent. Now, for $65, you could travel
the Sacramento Valley Railroad, the first spike and brace, must be shipped eigh- gredients: nitric acid, sulfuric acid and from New York to San Francisco in just
railroad line west of the Missouri. teen thousand miles to California from glycerol. Combined, they form one of the seven days.
the steelworks in Pittsburgh, on a four- world’s most powerful explosives, thirteen
He’s become obsessed with an even great- month journey around the treacherous times more destructive than gunpowder. Goods travel thousands of miles, radically
er engineering challenge — a project so waters of Cape Horn in South America. Used right, nitroglycerine can double the changing the lives of ordinary people.
ambitious they call him “Crazy Judah”. He Two years can pass between placing tunnelers’ pace. But it is highly unstable New Yorkers taste California oranges
aims to build a railroad linking California orders and receiving the goods. and dangerous to handle. Any physical for the first time. Communications are
PAGE 14 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

with the rest of America — through the shock and nitroglycerine can explode. revolutionized. The telegraph follows
Sierra Nevada. Some 13,500 men are recruited to work the railroad. The Pony Express becomes
on the railroad. Eighty percent of them When 15 men are blown to pieces on a outdated overnight.
In June 1861, Judah’s team risks their lives are Chinese. Most are fugitives from San Francisco wharf, a ban is placed on
to turn the vision into reality. poverty and hunger at home, lured to transporting the deadly liquid. The Railroads pass through the Great
California by the Gold Rush. But preju- Plains, the last great tract of American
THEODORE JUDAH dice and discrimination force them out of To get around the ban, Howden manu- soil untouched by settlement. Here, the
The river is 1200 feet below us — the top the mines to find work elsewhere. factures his own nitroglycerine on site impact of the railroad is devastating.
of the ridge 700 feet above, in places so each day — at a cost of only 75 cents per
steep that if you slip it is all over. The boys White workers are paid two to three dol- pound.
fasten ropes around their waists, with a lars a day, Chinese workers, just a dollar.
man above holding on with a turn around And this doesn’t include their food. Most After a fatal explosion in Tunnel 8, the
a tree. We make only one mile a day. of the Chinese workers come from a place company’s Irish crews refuse to use nitro-
in Canton Province that becomes known glycerine. Only Chinese workers are will- Continued on page 15
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
THE GREAT PLAINS and the outer casing of boats, bags and like a gold rush. Men left jobs, businesses, sands. In just one year, between 1870 and
The Great Plains cover a quarter of the water carriers — even coffins. They turn wives and children, sold whatever they had 1871, 40,000 settlers arrive in Nebraska.
North American continent, from Iowa buffalo horns into spoons and cups. Even and put the money into outfits, wagons, A quarter are single women; others, freed
to the Rocky Mountains. Flattened by the beast’s sinews become fiber for ropes, rifles and ammunition. It was a harvest slaves. But what the settlers encounter
retreating glaciers at the end of the last thread, and the strings of hunting bows. and we were the harvesters. in Nebraska are the harshest conditions
ice age ten thousand years ago, a unique imaginable — with the least resources to
ecosystem takes shape in the rain shadow But the railroads bring other hunters to In one year in 1873, hunters on the Plains survive them.
of the mighty Rockies. the Plains. The first white hunters are kill over 5 million bison.
sportsmen. But big business is not far In summer the temperature averages
There are no trees, and few rivers. The cli- behind. Shooting into a herd from a distance, a 110 degrees. There are no rivers, and
mate is semi-arid, and strong winds gust skilled shot like Mayer can take down as little rainfall. Droughts last for up to ten
across the flat grasslands. months. Prairie fires are a
This is the most fertile, constant danger.
untamed landscape in
America. To make good the claim,
settlers must build a
At the end of the Civil War, house. But there are no
20 million bison roam the trees on the Prairie. The
Great Plains. The bison are only building material is
the largest land mammal the prairie sod: the matted
in America — the descen- roots of grass cut into
dents of an even larger race rectangular blocks.
of bison that crossed an ice
bridge from Asia 20,000 Uriah Oblinger, a farmer
years ago. Moving south from Indiana, puts a brave
into warmer climates, they face on it: All we have to do
colonize land as far south is plow up some sod, ...cut
as Florida and Central it in lengths to suit and lay
America. up a wall & cover it — and
you have a house.
The herds migrate north
in the spring and south In a letter home to her
in the fall. In the “run- brother, Mattie Oblinger
ning season” at the end of describes the flat empti-
summer, herds 25 miles ness of the land: Charlie,
long stampede across the if you was here you would
grasslands. never get done looking, for
you can see ever so far. I
Two hundred years ago, guns and horses BLACK ELK many as 100 bison in forty-five minutes. expect you think we live miserable because
brought to the Americas by the Spanish I can remember when the buffalo were so On a good day, he can make a net profit we are in a sod house. But I tell you in solid
allowed Native farmers to become hunt- many that they could not be counted... But of $200 — more than the President earnest I never enjoyed myself better. It is
ers. They’re the most skilled horsemen more and more white men came to kill makes. because every lick we strike is for our selves
in America. They hunt with guns — but them until there were only heaps of bones and not half for some one else.
their weapon of choice is the bow. In scattered where they used to be. The white In the winter of 1873, the railhead
the time it takes to discharge and reload men didn’t kill them to eat. They killed at Dodge City, Kansas ships out over To keep their new land, settlers have to
a gun, a warrior can ride 300 yards and them for the metal that makes them crazy, 200,000 bison hides. Within a decade, stay put for at least five years. Tens of
discharge 20 arrows. and they took only the hides to sell. the number of bison killed will reach 20 thousands give up. The loneliness of the
million. Plains gives birth to a new condition:
The Ogallala Sioux move with the herds. Back east, America is being transformed “Prairie Madness”.
They’ve built a civilization around them. by an industrial revolution. Its factories SETTLERS
and mills draw resources from across the The railroads bring the hunters. And One especially harsh summer, 30,000
Black Elk is a six-year- old boy when the continent. As the railroads spread west, in their wake, the railroads bring a new newcomers to the new territories

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 15

railroads first cross the Plains. He remem- the great natural resource of the Plains breed — the settlers. The challenge of abandon their land, driven back east by
bers the days of the great bison hunts — a will now feed the wheels of industry. surviving on the Plains will test the set- drought, wind and dust storms.
sacred Sioux ritual. Belts turn the wheels of a mechanized tlers to the limits.
loom. The cotton mills and factories of Locusts threaten their crops. In 1874,
BLACK ELK Massachusetts need long belts to drive In 1862, Americans are made an incred- 200,000 square miles of Nebraska — an
The hunters circled around them, and the machinery. Leather from a bison’s hide is ible offer. Under the terms of Lincoln’s area bigger than the size of California
cry went up, as in a battle, “ Hoka hey!” of a size and strength that fits the bill. Homestead Act, heads of household — are devastated by the world’s big-
which meant to charge. Then there was a can claim 160 acres of prairie land free, gest locust plague. It contains 12 trillion
great dust and everybody shouted and all In 1865, there are over 20 million bison provided they stay for five years and make insects and weighs 27 million tons.
the hunters went in to kill. roaming the Great Plains. A bison hide is good the land. Ten percent of the U.S. is
worth three dollars, and a cartridge costs up for grabs, the biggest giveaway of free Between 1888 and 1892 half the popula-
For the Sioux, the bison is a mobile 25 cents. For a young hunter like Frank land in history. tion of western Nebraska head back east
general store. It provides fresh meat, Mayer, the math makes sense: The whole
clothes and bedding, covers for tepees Western country went Buffalo mad. It was Settlers head west by railroad in the thou-
Continued on page 16
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

Homesteaders charge cowboys when I saw them with eyes still young. And
for use of the water holes, and I see that something else died there and was
claim for damages when cattle buried in the blizzard. A people’s dream
trample their crops. died there. It was a beautiful dream.

The Wild West is tamed by That same year, the American Census
a new invention — barbed Bureau declares the frontier closed. All
wire. Before, it cost a thousand available settlement land is taken. The
dollars to fence a claim of 160 Great Plains, the last sanctuary of the Na-
acres. Barbed wire is cheap, tive Americans, is parceled up into home-
and can be laid at speed. Its steads. What Black Elk calls ‘The great
inventor, Nebraska farmer food pack for my people’ has become the
Joseph Gliddens, becomes one great food source for the entire American
of the richest men in America, nation.
earning a 25-cent royalty on
every hundred pounds of wire INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT
sold. Railroads have tamed the West and
transformed America. By 1890, 160,000
Cowboys parcel up the land miles of new railroad connect the nation.
in their turn, converting the Twelve lines cross the Mississippi and five
western plains into a new transcontinental lines connect the coasts.
cattle kingdom. The cattle
to Iowa and Illinois. Over a third of all — millions of them. In Texas a cow is graze on land where the bison The railroads are the Internet of the era,
homesteaders eventually abandon their worth just $4, but in the booming eastern once roamed. The days of the open range transforming everything they touch.
farms. cities, $35 to $40. are over. Goods travel thousands of miles, radically
changing the lives of ordinary people.
But first, they will need a resource As the railroads spread west into Kansas, For the Native Americans of the Plains, “Railroad time” replaces a patchwork
America has in abundance, but located Texas ranchers see fortunes to be made by this is the endgame. Two civilizations, of 20 irregular time zones, creating the
thousands of miles from these empty driving their cattle north to meet them. hunters and settlers, come head to head system we use today.
plains. in a final and unequal struggle.
In 1879, 23-year-old Teddy Blue Abbott In 1886, Richard Sears, a farm boy from
Great tracts of land in Michigan, Wiscon- heads north with a vast herd of cattle: All The Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868 pre- Minnesota, sets up the world’s first mail
sin and Minnesota are covered in forest. the cattle in the world seemed to be com- served the tribal homeland of the Sioux order catalogue, and creates an em-
In the 1870s, trees seem a limitless re- ing up out of Texas. On the trail we were “as long as grass grows and rivers flow”. pire distributing manufactured goods.
source. This is the wood the settlers need hardly ever out of sight of a herd, and when When white settlers encroach on land, the His 500-page catalog is mailed to over
to build barns, farms and fences. Whole we got to that big, flat country along the Sioux resist. 200,000 homes. It lists thousands of items
forests in the north are sacrificed. North Platte, we could see the dust of the for sale: shoes, ploughs, fishing tackle,
others for twenty miles. By 1876, Black Elk is 12 years old. They cutlery. Each new edition offers more
The white pines stand 200 feet tall. White told us they just wanted a little land... but items: bicycles, clothes, curtains and
pine is strong and light, and perfect for Like many cowboys, Teddy is a farm-boy, our people knew better. gramophones.
construction. bored of the homesteader life and looking
for adventure. Others cowboys are Civil Black Elk’s people, the Ogalala Sioux, seek Catalogue goods and timber are shipped
In just twelve years, loggers cut down 90 War veterans or freed slaves. A third are refuge with over 7,000 other displaced west to the Plains. Cattle and grain go
per cent of Michigan’s forests. African American, or Mexican gauchos. Native Americans in the Black Hills, east. And where the railroads meet, a
under the command of Crazy Horse and city is born: Chicago. In Chicago, 2,000
The lumber these men risk their lives to It takes at least ten men to drive a herd Sitting Bull. trains arrive and depart daily. This is the
bring down river transforms the Great of 3,000 head of cattle north to the railroad hub of the continent — and the
Plains. The timber, cut into uniform railheads. On the 25th of June 1876, Lt. Colonel commodities capital of America.
planks, is delivered west by railroad. George Custer reaches the “largest Indian
Armed with planks and machine-made TEDDY BLUE ABBOTT camp on the North American continent”. In the docks at Chicago, grain elevators
nails, settlers raise barns, houses, church- One afternoon … I rode up onto a little hill He determines to attack, even though he process 11.8 million bushels of grain a
es, even whole towns, at speed. … and I could see seven herds behind us. has too few bullets to kill an estimated year. Wood from a quarter of a million
I knew there were eight herds ahead of us, 7,000 Native Americans. trees is piled in Chicago’s lumberyards,
PAGE 16 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

CATTLE AND THE COWBOY and I could see the dust from thirteen more and Chicago’s stockyards hold 21,000
In Kansas, at the railheads, the timber of them on the other side of the river. By the end of the day, Custer and 210 of head of cattle. The beef is processed in
is used to build stockyards. And the his cavalrymen are massacred. Chicago’s meatpacking plants, and deliv-
railroads bring another character to the In the 15 years after the Civil War, 10 ered east in refrigerated railway cars. The
American west — the cowboy. million head of cattle are driven from But the Native victory at Little Big Horn price of beef halves and a new invention
Texas to the railheads. In 1871, a herd of provokes a backlash, which leads up to transforms the diet of the nation — the
The population of America is booming. 600,000 cattle come north in one epic the massacre in 1890 of Native Americans hamburger.
The Civil War effort stripped the nation drive. in the snow at Wounded Knee.
of resources and decimated the cattle As the western frontier closes, another
herds of the eastern States. And there are But as settlement spreads across the West, Now 27-year-old Black Elk is one of the frontier opens: Chicago’s first skyscrapers
mouths to feed. the cowboys’ days are numbered. Land few survivors: When I look back now, I can point the way to the future. For America,
in Kansas and Nebraska is parceled up still see the butchered women and children the only way now is up.
The East needs meat. And Texas has cows for homesteads, blocking the cattle trail. lying heaped and scattered as plain as
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
iron transforms into steel. For the first The pay is high — twice that of an aver-
time in history, steel can be made quickly, age sailor — but so is the risk. A sudden
cheaply and in vast quantities. Carnegie is gust of wind or bout of dizziness can be
an instant convert. fatal.

CARNEGIE The most famous skyscraper of all is

I have no faith in the policy of scattering being designed by George Burnham
one’s resources. Put all good eggs in one and built by engineer William Starrett.
basket and then watch the basket! Originally called the Fuller building, it
will forever be known another name: The
On August 22, 1875, despite severe delays, Flatiron.
America’s first Bessemer steel mill finally
blasts into action. Carnegie is leading This 380-foot skyscraper is at the cutting
the way to the mass production of steel edge of new technology. Unlike buildings
— from a mere few hundred tons of the made of heavy masonry or iron, which
stuff in 1860 to 11 million tons by 1900. are limited in how high they can go, this
skeleton of steel can go as high as it likes.
His steel will instigate the dawn of a The frame takes all the weight; the walls
new technological revolution. Cities like simply hang on it like a blanket. The steel
Pittsburgh will become manufacturing frame also means thinner walls, bigger
dynamos powering the new America. windows, and more light. The Flatiron,
THE MODERN CITY — about to gamble it on steel. The plant, if say its fans, is to the United States what
MADE OF STEEL it is completed, will transform not only In Chicago, Carnegie’s steel helps rebuild the Parthenon is to Greece. To its enemies
They’re called ‘rough necks’ — the Irish, Pittsburgh, but the entire industrial land- the city from the ashes as the world’s first it’s a disaster waiting to happen.
Scandinavian and German immigrants scape of America. skyscrapers are born.
and Mohawk Indians who build Ameri- When New York’s first skyscraper is com-
ca’s skyscrapers CARNEGIE Between 1885 and 1892, sixteen, eighteen, pleted in 1902, pessimistic locals take bets
Up to this time I had the reputation in even twenty story steel-framed towers on how far its debris will spread when
WILLIAM STARRETT business of being a bold, fearless, and
Building skyscrapers is the nearest peace- perhaps a somewhat reckless young man. I
time equivalent of war.. Even to the oc- then entered upon the most anxious period
casional grim reality of an accident where of my business life.
maimed bodies, even death remind us
that we are fighting a war of construction Carnegie shows plans to potential inves-
against the forces of nature. tors and explains excitedly and emphati-
cally how his vision will take shape. But
The skyscrapers won’t exist without these stock markets around the world have
men, nor will the modern America exist just crashed. The economy is in free fall
without that other magic ingredient that America is experiencing a massive credit
makes it all possible — steel. Steel will be- crunch.
come the vital factor in the making of the
American city. Combining the flexibility Several investors pull out and Carnegie
of wrought iron and the brute strength of will have to buy their shares to prevent
cast iron, it’s twenty percent stronger than the project from collapsing. But if there is
both. But for steel to become the building one thing that sums up Andrew Carnegie
material of the future a manufacturing it is his belief in progress. A Scottish im-
revolution needs to take place. migrant with a humble background, he is
the embodiment of the American dream.
Nowhere is the need for steel greater than Brooklyn Bridge Workers
in Chicago. Originally built of timber, the Bobbin boy in a textile mill, messenger
city burns to the ground in a devastating boy, telegraph operator and now captain transform Chicago’s skyline. Steel pro- the wind knocks it down. Although now
fire in 1871. If Chicago is to rebuild itself, of his own iron business, Carnegie is now

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 17

vides the strength on which outrageous dwarfed by taller skyscrapers, the Flatiron
the pressure on land values will mean it ready to risk everything on what he hopes dreams will hang— and makes Andrew still stands strong.
can only go one way — up. will be the next big thing. Carnegie the richest man in the world.
To do this Chicago needs steel. In 1871 He has seen the latest steel technology in There are 66 skyscrapers under construc- IMMIGRATION
steel is still a rare luxury item, expensive England: the Bessemer Steel Converter, tion in Lower Manhattan in 1902. Many In 1885, construction is under threat on
and difficult to make. It takes a Pittsburgh capable of making high quality steel at a of the men working on them are ex-sail- the most iconic structure in American
businessman with an audacious vision to fraction of the normal cost. ors. Others are the Irish immigrants who History. The Statue of Liberty, a gift from
change all that. assembled the giant steel cables across the French people to America to com-
The process is surprisingly simple: the new Brooklyn Bridge. From Canada, memorate the centennial of the Declara-
In 1873, Andrew Carnegie attempts Molten pig iron is poured into a massive Mohawk Indians arrive. They’ve been tion of Independence, was designed and
something never done before — the first egg-like converter and blasted with air building iron and steel bridges and are built in Paris, dismantled into parts, then
mass-produced steel plant in the world. to remove the carbon impurities. When skilled at working with steel at heights.
Having made his fortune in iron, he’s alloys are added to the molten metal, the
Continued on page 18
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times



shipped across the Atlantic to New York.

But the Americans can’t afford to build
a pedestal, so it lies in bits on Bedloe’s

Newspaper Editor Joseph Pulitzer calls

this a scandal: It would be an irrevocable
disgrace to New York City and the Ameri- Working in his lab in Menlo Park,
can Republic to have France send us this New Jersey, Thomas Alva Edison is on
splendid gift without our having provided the brink of an innovation that will
even so much as a landing place for it. revolutionize America.

Time is running out for Lady Liberty. If His team works day and night to find
the perfect filament for an electric
Pulitzer can’t raise the cash through his
lamp. Electricity isn’t a new idea, but
newspaper, other cities like Baltimore, San
no one, so far, has managed use it as a
Francisco and Philadelphia threaten to light source. Americans use gas lamps
claim the statue for themselves. to light homes and streets. Edison
says he can light the whole of lower
PULITZER Manhattan with electricity. Now he
We must raise the money. It is a gift of has to prove it.
the whole country of France to the whole
American people. Give something, however Edison needs a filament that will burn
little. Let us hear from the people! slowly in a vacuum. He’s already tried
hundreds of materials: thread rubbed
Pulitzer’s words have a miraculous effect. with tarred lampjack, cotton, Chinese
From all over America donations begin to and Italian raw silk, horsehair, teak,
flood in. After four months, the $100,000 spruce, boxwood, cork, celluloid,
parchment— even beard hair.
needed to complete the pedestal is raised.
He finally tries carbonized cardboard,
On April 22, 1886, after a hard winter which burns an astonishing 300
building the pedestal, the workmen hours, longer than any other material
can finally celebrate. The 150-foot high so far.
pedestal complete with its founda-
tions constitutes by far the largest single By New Year’s Eve 1879, Edison is
concrete mass of its time — more than ready to show off his new invention.
27,000 tons. Three thousand electricity sightseers
flock to the Menlo Park laboratory.
Now that the pedestal is complete, the The Pennsylvania Railroad has ar-
iron skeleton can be assembled. Designed ranged special trains to bring pilgrims
by Gustave Eiffel, who will later build the from all directions.
famous Eiffel Tower in Paris, the statue is
Among the crowd is York Herald
built on a ninety-two foot high iron skel- Flatiron reporter Marshall Fox: Incredible as
eton that forms the framework on which
it may appear, Edison’s electric light
the copper shell must hang. A group of The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. will reinvent themselves. Schmuel Gelb- is produced from a tiny strip of paper
200 immigrants must clad the statue us- Send these, the homeless, fisz will become Sam Goldwyn. Angelo that a breath would blow away.
ing ropes and cranes. tempest-tost to me. Siciliano will become Charles Atlas, Israel
I lift my lamp beside the golden door! Isidore Baline will become Irving Berlin. Edison’s lights are still experimental
The statue has over 350 individual copper models. He’ll go on to test 6,000
pieces. Each one has to be attached to the The Statue of Liberty will come to rep- What they are coming to is a new type of filaments from around the world.
metal frame, requiring more than 300,000 resent not just New York but an entire city and a new type of civilization — vig- He’ll improve vacuum processes and
copper rivets. A bar is held against the nation. It faces southeast, the perfect orous, argumentative and optimistic. This dynamos, the conducting wires and
head of the rivet to hold it firm during insulations. He’ll go to extraordinary
PAGE 18 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

viewing angle for those entering this new civilization will spread across America in
the hammering The scale of the statue lengths to light not just a room, but
world for the first time. Between 1892 and the first years of the new century.
is enormous. Her index finger alone is 8 an entire city.
1919, 12 million immigrants will arrive
feet long. here — Jews escaping the pogroms in An immigrant guidebook on survival in By 1900, the country is turning
Russia and Poland, Italians and Sicil- America sums up what is at stake: Forget electric. New York’s first power sta-
By early October 1886, the bizarre specter ians looking for a better life. The statue’s your customs and ideals. Select a goal and tion at Pearl Street lights up the city.
of a headless Liberty towers over the har- power to symbolize the hope of a new pursue it with all your might. You will Electric elevators are installed in the
bor. The giant face is finally winched into kind of country where everyone has a experience a bad time but sooner or later hundreds of new high-rise urban
position. Liberty nears completion. At the chance to make it remains as powerful you will achieve your goal. Do not take a factories — a massive advance on
base a poem is carved: today as it was when the it was unveiled moments rest. Run! the old slow steam elevators Elisha
on October 28, 1886. Otis first invented in 1852. In March
Give me your tired, your poor, the ground is broken for an electric
Your huddled masses yearning As the new arrivals pass through the powered subway.
to breath free, immigration center on Ellis Island, many
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
Many head for the Ford plant in Detroit.
Ford is unique in the automobile industry
for paying all workers the same. Henry
Ford causes a national sensation when
he announces $5 a day for all in 1919.
The pay is a staggering 5 times more than
the average wage for a sharecropper in

Equal pay does not bring equality for the

black and other minority workers who
make their way to Detroit.

You could have them [blacks] on some
dirty, rough job where there wouldn’t be
many whites to complain against them. But
if you tried to mix them in the assembly
lines or any place else where whites pre-
dominated and hung their coats touching
those of the whites you know... you couldn’t
do that.

Not only in Detroit, but also in other

American cities where migrant workers
have gathered, racial tensions worsen
beyond the factory gates. White workers
fear job competition once the wartime
boom ends. African American workers
become scapegoats in labor disputes.
In Chicago, the tension is palpable on
Chicago’s unofficially segregated beaches.
Residents and realtors predict properties
will lose value as black families move in.
They urge the city council to send the
migrants back. Resentment reaches a
Spindletop boiling point in the hot summer of 1919.
A black teenager inadvertently drifts into
OIL BOOM sediment. The Hamills don’t know it but ensuring a constant supply of oil is a a white beach and drowns when he is
Oil is a brutal business. Accidents are they are drilling towards a massive oil struggle. America is the largest producer struck by a rock thrown by a white man.
common. Drilling at Spindletop (a salt field 5,000 feet thick. of oil in the world, and when she enters A race riot ensues.
dome field outside Beaumont, Texas) has the war in 1917, supplies of the pre-
been tried on and off for years, without They hit oil and the gusher spouts two cious commodity are guaranteed for the In Chicago, hope for an integrated city is
result. Now in January 1901, the Hamills, hundred feet into the air. The Hamills allies. Allied Victory, when it comes in destroyed by the riot. People call the sum-
known as the best drillers in the business, were hoping for fifty barrels a day of 1918 is underpinned by American oil. mer of 1919 ‘The Red Summer’. Twenty-
are making one final attempt to make crude under Spindletop. It’s more like The nation’s role on the world stage is six riots break out across America — in
Spindletop pay. 70,000 barrels, more than the total previ- changed forever. Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee,
ous output of the American oil industry Texas, Nebraska, and Washington, D.C.
The racial boundaries have been drawn.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 19

Even with new technology, it’s a painfully combined.
slow process. They have been drilling this THE GREAT MIGRATION Policemen patrol white public parks and
single hole for months. Their funding is The oil spouts for nine days. The Hamills Between 1916 and 1930 a million black beaches; theatre seating is segregated.
running out. They will only get paid if have tapped the vast oil reserves under southerners — from Alabama, Mississip- White residents refuse to sell houses to
they strike oil. Texas for the first time, opening billions pi, Arkansas, South Carolina, Louisiana blacks. At the same time whites living
of barrels of oil. and Georgia escape poverty and persecu- in black enclaves move out. The ghetto
Their steam-powered apparatus has tion in search of a better life. Over 58,000 is born and as ghettos become more
already drilled through 500 feet of quick- As America enters World War I, the need Mexicans join them. Called the great crowded they turn into slums.
sand and bedrock. Their goal is 700 feet for oil becomes compelling. Oil-fired migration, this movement of people is the
below — oil, formed from prehistoric or- ships achieve full power faster, can travel largest ever witnessed within the U.S.
ganisms: plankton and algae that settled further and can be refueled at sea. But
on ancient seabeds and were buried in as the conflict rages at sea and on land,
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times


GREAT DEPRESSION is getting his men to erect the largest President Herbert Hoover still exclaims view. Americans are, he thinks, a mongrel
In the 1920’s, Los Angeles was in the grip advertising sign in the world, at an astro- ‘I am convinced we have now passed the race doomed to the trash heap of history
of a property boom. With more money nomical cost of $21,000. worst and with continued unity of effort we ever since they’d made the ‘mistake’ of
and mobility, people pour into the city shall rapidly recover.’ freeing their slaves.
from all over the country. Some 25,000 Made of 3’ x 9’ steel plates and wired with
homes are built and sold in 1923 alone, 4,000 light bulbs, his sign will read the But by December 10, 1930 rumors are America is reeling. It is the world’s biggest
making this the fastest growing city in the name of his development, Hollywood, spreading about the Bank of United economy but the unemployment rate still
world. As the advertisements put it: ‘The in 50 foot high letters. The name of this States’s instability. Share prices drop from stands at 17% in 1936. The Depression is
magnificent hills of Hollywoodland hold housing development will become a $200 to $20. When the bank starts selling not going away despite a second phase of
every metropolitan advantage’. byword for wealth, consumption and their own shares to customers to try and President Roosevelt’s New Deal policies.
entertainment — all the things that the spread the risk, people get nervous.
A new, upmarket housing development is nation aspired to in the 1920’s. In 1938, the Nazis take over Germany and
being built just 6 miles from downtown The psychological impact at home and threaten their neighbors. Fascism blooms
Los Angeles. It’s more than housing that’s Biggest is best. Real estate values rocket. abroad is huge. The Bank of United States in Italy and Spain.
for sale. Millions of Americans want to In Manhattan, where land is at a pre- is a private bank but its name is emblem-
own what they once only dreamt of and mium, they build straight up. Skyscrapers atic to people everywhere in the world. Even in the midst of despair, a phenom-
America’s aspirations are driving its con- soar in a race to be the world’s tallest. Confidence in American banks disinte- enon of the time is the extraordinary
sumer and economic boom. Banks build biggest of all — seventy- grates. In the last 60 days of 1930, 600 popularity of radio. Despite the Depres-
seven floors of steel girders are thrown banks close their doors. sion, by 1935 there are over 20 million
Car ownership rockets from 8 million in up in only three months on the Bank radio sets in America reaching 80 million
1920 to 23 million by 1929. Toasters, vac- of Manhattan building. But the real The crisis of confidence in America’s listeners — twice as many as own tele-
uum cleaners, radios, telephones, irons, revolution is happening on Wall Street. banks has a domino effect around the phones. Isolated rural communities are
are bought in record numbers — on the Banks invent the personal loan — and the world. The U.S. had lent Germany $1.4 connected to networks across the nation.
PAGE 20 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

installment plan. Consumers are between personal check. Now everybody can buy billion to pay WWI reparations. As U.S. For the first time in history, one person
$2 billion to $3 billion in debt. shares. The stock market soars even faster banks fail, they call in their foreign loans, with a microphone can speak to many,
than the skyscrapers. From the East Coast causing the German banking system to influence them, and perhaps change the
Cinema going went up 250% over the to the West, everybody wants a slice of the collapse. Social and political upheaval re- course of history.
decade. By 1930, 100 million people go to action. sults. The run on the banks of the United
the ‘dream palaces’ every week. States helps put the Nazis into power in President Roosevelt harnesses this new
The Wall Street Crash of October 1929 Germany. technology to address the problems of
For many, the ultimate aspiration is to saw $30 billion wiped out of the value the nation. He promotes ‘The New Deal.’
live in suburbia: ‘a clean, pure atmosphere of shares on the stock exchange. This Germany’s fascist leader Adolf Hitler Government legislation and funding are
and a wonderful climate make Holly- initially affects only stockholders. For thinks America is a destitute country and used to tackle the country’s instability
woodland the ‘Supreme Achievement in over a year, most people still think the always will be. The Grapes of Wrath, John — from agriculture through banking to
Community Building’. The businessman country’s economy — and the banks Steinbeck’s story of impoverished Dust unemployment.
developing this particular housing project — are sound. Six months after the Crash, Bowl migrants, only confirms Hitler’s
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
utes of reaching Hawaii. At 7:58 am the gic targets such as airfields, shipyards,
Japanese begin one of the most audacious communications and railways will be hit.
attacks in military history — the bomb- Until now, the Allies considered daylight
ing of Pearl Harbor. raids too dangerous. But U.S. military
commanders want to hit the Germans
Under a barrage of bombs, in less than around the clock with high altitude preci-
three hours the bulk of the US Pacific sion bombing.
fleet is damaged beyond repair.
Leading the mission is Colonel Paul
Twenty-seven hours after the attack Tibbets from Quincy, Illinois. A love
America declares war on Japan. Pearl for flying steals him from his original
Harbor changes America forever. For the profession, medicine. America’s Eighth
first time the country must take its place Air Force considers him one of the best
in the world — at a moment of crisis. pilots of the B-17E bomber — the ‘Flying
Industry has been in decline for over a Fortress’.
decade. Now the country must forget its
peacetime attitudes and mobilize on a The crew has to be tough to withstand the
massive scale. America puts out a call to cramped conditions, the altitude sickness
arms and industry from its people. The and frostbite that come with flying above
country must exploit every resource to 20,000 feet. Air Force strategists count on
become a machine of military might. the B-17E bomber to be just as tough.
Overnight, America transforms into an
After years of isolation, America is about ing device, but not by American B-17s. “Arsenal of Democracy”. In development at Boeing since 1935, the
to receive the biggest wake-up call in Approaching are 353 Japanese aircraft. plane can carry 2,000 pounds of bombs
history. People will be mobilized as never Six aircraft carriers have brought them Pulled into a global war, America must for at least 2,000 miles. With four engines,
before — into armies, into munitions within flying range of the American base. mobilize both men and machines. it can go faster, higher and further while
factories, into navies and into laboratories carrying a bigger payload and is equipped
where new technology and inventions Even a radio signal as low-strength as WAR MACHINE with eight 50-caliber machine guns to
will drive the nation’s war effort. But the this can stretch many miles across the sea On the English south coast on August 17, fight off enemy air attacks.
biggest invention of all is a new type of — guiding the incoming Japanese. If the 1942 a quiet buzz in the distance becomes
war: a war of logistics, organization and American high command underestimated a roar. A bombing raid is on its way to The target is Rouen — the German’s big-
planning. the need for radar, they also underesti- occupied Europe. What is extraordinary gest railway marshalling yard in northern
mated the threat posed by the Japanese. is that this flight takes place in broad France. Trains are vital to the Germans,
On December 1941, in an Opama, Ha- daylight. supplying their empire across Europe.
waii, radar station, Joe Lockard, a radar America has built up its Pacific Fleet in Tibbets and his crew are on a mission to
operator, spots something on the screen. Hawaii but it is not expecting to be at- If these men can complete their mission wipe the yard from the map.
Two pulses are showing something out tacked, especially not by Japan, which is and come back alive, the very way that
to sea. over 3,700 miles away. war is fought will be changed. The weather is favorable with only a few
small clouds. Visibility is virtually infinite.
Lockard is new to this job. At first he The Japanese are flying the world’s first American military planners want to But even flying at 23,000 feet, visibility
thinks it is an equipment fault. Radar will long range escort fighter: the Mitsubishi destroy the network that holds together
ultimately become crucial to America’s A6M Model 21 Zero Fighter. In 1941, it the Nazi occupation of Europe. Strate- Continued on page 22
air defense systems, but for now the could out-fight and out-range any Allied
technology is still in its infancy and little fighter. The Zero fighters are more so-
understood. phisticated than anything the allies have.

The oscilloscope is an early warning radar High command is never told that there
system, using sonar to detect objects in are more than 50 planes on the radar
its range. When a sound wave bounces screen. A fleet of 50 US B-17’s would
off something hard — like an incom- never fly all the way to Hawaii, but
ing plane — it causes the graph to peak. Lockard doesn’t know that fact, so he isn’t
More planes means more peaks. But the alert to the danger.
American Army still regards radar as an

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 21

unproven gadget. The radar station on The Zero Fighter carries an astonishing
Hawaii is manned only 4 hours a day. 250 gallons of fuel, giving it a flying range
of over 1,600 miles. Because this plane
All the plotters have gone home early to can fly much further from its aircraft
enjoy their first day off in over a month. carrier than any other fighter, this gives it
one crucial advantage: SURPRISE.
Earlier that morning, Lockard heard
Hawaiian music on the radio. A pilot on The early radar system has its faults. The
the base has told him that whenever B-17 Japanese air squadron has flown into the
bombers fly from the U.S. mainland to equipment’s “blind spot”.
Hawaii, this music is played to act as a
homing beacon. Although the radar behavior was out of
the ordinary, Lockard cannot know that a
The radio signal is being used as a hom- fleet of Japanese bombers is within min- B-17E Bomber, The Flying Fortress
A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times

Some shave their heads to make it easier for ATOM BOMB
medic to deal with head wounds while oth- This is the middle of the Alamogordo
ers do it as an eve-of-battle ritual. desert in New Mexico. It is 5:45 AM
on July 16, 1945. In less than a minute,
Kit and hardware take on a talismanic sig- American technology will change the
nificance. Soldiers stuff their pockets with world forever.
anything they can lay their hands on, from
compasses to chocolate bars. Paratroop- For Robert Oppenheimer, the Scientific
ers’ leg pouches alone weigh in at up to 80 Director for the top secret Manhattan
pounds each. Project, this is the culmination of nearly
three years of work. His entire career
Brigadier ‘Slim Jim’ Gavin addressed the rests on the success of this experiment.
men of the 82nd Airborne Division: What This is the most technologically advanced
you are going to go through you won’t want to mechanism in the world. But nobody is
change for a million dollars — but you won’t sure whether it will work.
want to go through it very often again. For
most of you this will be the first time going At the explosion of the atom bomb, a
into battle. Remember — you are going to kill mushroom cloud rises high over the des-
or you will be killed ert, billowing, huge, impossibly powerful.
It will bring and end to the war against
Nearly 5,000 American troops will die in Japan. The human costs were devastating.
one day — a day the world will never forget. Yet the war was over.

One and a half million American troops Where every other great nation on earth
goes both ways. Anti-aircraft fire shoots of medical supplies: bandages, morphine,
stand ready in southern England to storm is left in ruins, America emerges from
up just ahead of the plane. Tibbets heaves surgical instruments, bedpans, oxygen
German-held ‘Fortress Europe’. the war stronger than it went in. Quality
the plane to the side. tents, and X-ray machines. There are
of life has risen by 15%, and a previ-
thousands of prosthetic limbs; even thou-
The first troops hit Omaha Beach, meet- ously crippled economy is back on track.
The B-17 bombers drop 36,900 pounds of sands of eyeballs in 5 sizes and 4 colors.
ing ferocious German resistance. Barrage America’s distance from battle has left
bombs on the yard. The raid causes mas-
balloons, nicknamed Air Whales, fill the its infrastructure intact and its economy
sive damage to the railway infrastructure. Before computers, calculators or even
skies, their purpose to prevent the German vibrant.
Although only 50% of the bombs fall in ballpoint pens, U.S. planners are able
Air Force from flying low and strafing the
the target area, in 1942, that is precision to prepare the biggest military opera-
Allied troops with deadly machine gun America’s technical innovation has been
bombing and a big improvement over tion ever seen. In an age before e-mail,
fire. Their cables are a potential spider’s decisive in winning the bloodiest war
nighttime attacks. the pencil and the carbon copy are king.
web and they are armed with an explo- in history. In six short years America
Everything is done by hand. The system is
sive charge if they are hit. But they have has risen from the Great Depression to
Only two of the B-17’s sustain slight precise, but labor intensive.
another effect too. become the most powerful nation in the
damage. Convinced by the accuracy of
the bombing and no loss of American Hundreds of millions of finger-sized am-
These enormous helium filled silver sacks
lives, the military initiate wide scale day- poules of penicillin are mass-produced.
are attached to the waists of the men of the
light bombing of strategic German sites The world’s first antibiotic prevents
320th Anti-Aircraft Barrage
across Europe. wounds and infection from killing men.
Balloon Battalion — ham-
pering their every move and
Not all strategic bomb runs are so suc- By 1943, an American soldier can draw
making them an obvious target
cessful. B-17s become big targets for the on 4 tons of supplies. A Japanese combat-
to the incoming Luftwaffe
Germans. America responds by upping ant has just 2 pounds. But all these sup-
(German Air Force).
production — for every B-17 shot down, plies are useless without men prepared
American workers produce two more. to die.
There are 2,400 U.S. casual-
The plan is simple: out-produce the
ties at Omaha Beach alone.
enemy. That takes not only firepower but A million and a half US soldiers have
Yet Operation Overlord is a
manpower. flooded southern England ready for the
logistical miracle. Over 6,000
invasion of France, six times the number
ships, 1,300 aircraft and 800
The triumph of American technology, of U.S. combat troops that invaded Iraq.
gliders are involved in this first
industry and planning is tested beyond
PAGE 22 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010

wave alone.
anything seen before in warfare. This is the night of June 5th 1943 — the
night before the biggest single military
Brilliant planning, courage
D-DAY operation the world has ever seen — D-
and technology help the Allies
By June 1944, Southern England has Day.
to victory, even though 4,900
become a massive army camp consisting of
Americans die.
one and a half million Americans. General Many of these men have less than 12
Dwight D. Eisenhower takes command of hours to live.
Across the Pacific hand to hand
the biggest military operation in history,
fighting is taking a terrible toll
codenamed Operation Overlord. To the BAUMGARTEN
on American lives. The military
world, it will be known as D-Day. I did not expect to come back alive. I wrote
once again turns to technology.
such to my sister to get the mail before my
A weapon to end the war — a
America prepares itself, catering for every parents and break the news gently to them
weapon to change the world.
material factor of war. The Medical Corps when she received the telegram that I was
alone stockpiles tens of thousands of tons no longer alive.
A Newspaper in Eductaion Supplement to The Washington Times
Moving students from “historical is profound. Years later, former NHD American history, medicine, literature, the discovery of the laser and trace
apathetic” to “historical engaged” is participants report the research process industry, architecture or music medical breakthroughs. For the fashion
always a challenge for classroom teachers for National History Day was the single students can find a topic to research. enthusiast, what about the impact of
unless you are a National History Day most empowering learning experience in For instance, for the student who is blue jeans in the late 1890s?
teacher. National History Day teachers their mid-school or high school years. interested in war and weapons, a research
erase boring lessons of learning history project on the impact of the stirrup History Day breathes life into the
through questions at the end of the One of the most powerful tenets of NHD or the longbow might be a perfect fit. traditional history curriculum by
chapter and challenges students to is the historical theme. The theme allows Another possibility is a project on how engaging students and teachers in a
become historians. Paralleling the for a microscopic look below the surface the longbow, with its superior range, hands-on and in-depth approach to
work of a historian, students select a of history to discover connections and transformed the strategies of battles. studying the past. By focusing on a
topic of personal interest connected to cause/effect in and between events. theme, students are introduced to a new
a historic theme and then read widely. Teachers report, when using the theme, If students are interested in exploring organizational structure of learning
The reading leads students to uncover students must “dig deep” to determine things closer to home they might look history. Teachers are supported in
sources in archives, museums, libraries, the direct impact and the long term at the invention of the vacuum cleaner introducing highly complex research
and perhaps, even in the family attic. change of their selected topic. or the TV dinner. Through the research strategies to students. Everyone wins.
At this point students are just getting students will discover the answer to the When NHD is implemented in the
started. NHD participants spend a When students explore history through questions; did the innovations make classroom, students are involved in a life
year researching, reading, analyzing, the theme they soon find innovation life easier or did the innovations add changing learning experience. For more
interpreting and finally presenting is everywhere. If they have a special more work? If students are interested information, please visit our website at
their research. The research experience interest in economics, civics, world or in medicine they could examine www.nhd.org.

America: The Story of Us

Lesson Activities Related to Viewing the Story
Pre-Viewing Activities: 6. Building the Rails. The construction of the transcontinental railroad was
1. This series explores the American landscape over time. Before viewing an made possible by the hard work of thousands of workers. The railroad
episode, ask students to review a map depicting the United States during the would also not have been possible without substantial funds allocated by
time period covered in the episode or episodes they are watching. the U.S. government to the large railroad companies. Students should write
an opinion piece or letter to the editor arguing for or against the use of
2. The America series touches upon many specific stories to give perspective on government funds for the construction of the railroad, from the perspective
the growth of the nation as a whole. Before watching an episode, ask students of someone living in the 19th century at the time it was being constructed.
to make a list of 5-10 important events and people from the time period it
covers. The class can review these lists together and discuss, before or after 7. Behind the Scenes at the Erie Canal. The Erie Canal was one of the greatest
watching an episode. engineering feats in U.S. history. Ask students to imagine they were a laborer
working to help build the canal, and have them write a letter home to their
Viewing Activities: families. Since many canal workers were immigrants, these letters could be to
3. Ace Reporters. This 12 part series covers critical events from Jamestown family members in other parts of the U.S. or overseas.
through today. Imagine you are a reporter from any era in U.S. history and
chose one important figure from American history to interview. Write 5 8. Sky High in Chicago. The Chicago Daily News documented transformation
questions you would ask this historical figure and a short one-paragraph of that city from a small midwestern town to an industrial giant. The Library
biography of your interview subject. of Congress has digitized many articles and photos from this paper. Ask
students to search the American Memory Project online (http://memory.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 / PAGE 23

4. Then and Now. America The Story of Us depicts pivotal moments in U.S. loc.gov) to locate images and articles from Chicago’s industrial heyday. They
history. What are some of the key moments or changes your community can choose an image or document and write a short one page analysis about
has experienced? You can explore this topic through photography. Locate what it reveals about Chicago during this era.
a photograph that captures your community; this photo can be of any
interesting person, place, or scene from the past. Then, find a photo that 9. WWII Remembered. Many veterans of WWII are still alive to tell their
depicts a related scene from today. Compare and contrast these photos in a stories. Ask students to locate and interview WWII vets to record their
short essay. stories. Learn how to submit them to the Library of Congress Veterans
History project at www.loc.gov/vets
5. Slavery Depicted. The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 declared that all runaway
slaves from slave states be returned to their masters. In the aftermath of this
law, ads seeking runaway slaves appeared throughout U.S. newspapers. Ask
students to locate one of these ads online or using the internet, and discuss
these ads in small groups or with the larger class.
PAGE 24 / Tuesday, March 16, 2010 A Newspaper in Education Supplement to The Washington Times