Outline of United States history


Outline of United States history

The following outline provides an overview and topical guide to the history of the United States.

Contents

By period

Named eras and periods

These multi-year periods are commonly identified in American history. The existence and dating of some of these periods is debated by historians.

Political parties
Wars

See List of wars involving the United States.

Timelines and lists

1400s

1490s

1500s

1510s
  • On Easter Sunday, April 2, 1513, a Spanish expedition led by Juan Ponce de León lands on a huge inhabited island (later determined to be a continental peninsula) which he names La Pascua Florida (the Feast of Flowers, now Florida).
1520s
  • On March 6, 1521, three Spanish ships under the command of Fernão de Magalhães (Ferdinand Magellan) land on the Island of Guam after a seemingly endless eleven week voyage across the Pacific Ocean. Magellan names the archipelago Las Isles de las Velas Latinas (The Islands of the Latine Sails). When the Spaniards refuse to pay for supplies, natives take iron from the ships. Magellan renames the archipelago Las Islas de los Ladrones (The Islands of the Thieves).
1540s
1550s
1560s
1570s
1580s
1590s
  • A resupply party finds the Roanoke Colony dismantled and deserted on August 18, 1590
  • Spanish Governor Juan de Oñate Salazar founds the colony of Santa Fé de Nuevo Méjico (New Mexico) at San Juan de los Caballeros on July 11, 1598

1600s

1610s
  • Spanish Governor Pedro de Peralta moves the capital of Santa Fé de Nuevo Méjico (New Mexico) from San Juan de los Caballeros to La Villa Real de la Santa Fé de San Francisco de Asís (Santa Fe) in 1610
1620s
  • English Puritans establish the Newe-Plymouth Colony on November 11, 1620
  • Netherlanders establish the province of Nieuw-Nederland (New Netherland) along the Hudson River in May 1624
  • English Puritans establish the Newe-England Colony on September 6, 1628
  • King Charles I of England grants the Newe-England Colony a royal charter as the Governour and Company of the Mattachusetts Bay in Newe-England on March 4, 1629
1630s
1640s
  • The Long Parliament grants a charter for the Colony of Providence Plantations including the Colony of Providence and the colonies of Rhode Island, March 1644
  • Second Anglo-Powhatan War, 1644 – 1646
  • The Connecticut Colony annexes the Saybrook Colony, 1644
1660s
1670s
  • Third Anglo-Dutch War, April 7, 1672 – March 5, 1674
    • A Netherlands fleet under the command of Cornelis Evertsen de Jongste captures the Province of New-York, August 1673.
    • Netherlands military government of Nieuw-Nederland, August 1673 – March 5, 1674
    • Treaty of Westminster, February 19, 1674
    • England regains control of the Province of New-York, March 5, 1674
  • The Province of New-Jersey is split into the Province of East Jersey and the Province of West Jersey, March 18, 1673
  • King Philip's War, June 8, 1675 – August 12, 1676
1680s
1690s

1700s

1710s
1720s
1730s
1740s
1750s
1760s
1770s
1780s
  • The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts takes effect on October 25, 1780, changing the name of the State of Massachusetts Bay.
  • Spain establishes El Presidio Reál de Santa Barbara in Las Californias, April 21, 1782
  • Northwest Indian War, 1785 – August 3, 1795
  • Shays' Rebellion, August 29, 1786 – May 25, 1787
  • The Philadelphia Convention writes a new Constitution of the United States, May 25, 1787 – September 17, 1787
  • The Congress of the Confederation organizes the Territory Northwest of the River Ohio, July 13, 1787
  • The State of Delaware becomes the 1st state to ratify the US Constitution on December 7, 1787[1]
  • The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania becomes the 2nd state to ratify the US Constitution on December 12, 1787[1]
  • The State of New Jersey becomes the 3rd state to ratify the US Constitution on December 18, 1787[1]
  • The State of Georgia becomes the 4th state to ratify the US Constitution on January 2, 1788[1]
  • The State of Connecticut becomes the 5th state to ratify the US Constitution on January 9, 1788[1]
  • The Commonwealth of Massachusetts becomes the 6th state to ratify the US Constitution on February 6, 1788[1]
  • The State of Maryland becomes the 7th state to ratify the US Constitution on April 28, 1788[1]
  • The State of South Carolina becomes the 8th state to ratify the US Constitution on May 23, 1788[1]
  • The US Constitution takes effect when the State of New Hampshire becomes the 9th state to ratify the document on June 21, 1788[1]
  • The Commonwealth of Virginia becomes the 10th state to ratify the US Constitution on June 25, 1788[1]
  • The State of New York becomes the 11th state to ratify the US Constitution on July 26, 1788[1]
  • A new government under the US Constitution comes into being on March 4, 1789
  • George Washington becomes the 1st President of the United States on April 30, 1789[1]
  • The State of North Carolina becomes the 12th state to ratify the US Constitution on November 21, 1789[1]
1790s
  • The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations becomes the 13th state to ratify the US Constitution on May 29, 1790[1]
  • The Vermont Republic is admitted to the Union as the State of Vermont (the 14th state) on March 4, 1791
  • Whiskey Rebellion, 1791 – 1794
  • The United States Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the US Constitution, takes effect on December 15, 1791
  • The United States sells the Erie Triangle to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, March 3, 1792
  • The District of Kentucky of the Commonwealth of Virginia is admitted to the Union as the Commonwealth of Kentucky (the 15th state) on June 1, 1792
  • The Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution takes effect, February 7, 1795
  • The Territory South of the River Ohio is admitted to the Union as the State of Tennessee (the 16th state) on June 1, 1796
  • John Adams becomes the 2nd President of the United States on March 4, 1797
  • The Territory of Mississippi is organized, April 7, 1798
  • Quasi-War, 1798 – 1800

1800s

1810s
1820s
  • The District of Maine of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is admitted to the Union as the State of Maine (the 23rd state) on March 15, 1820
  • The Adams-Onis Treaty establishes the boundary between the United States and the Kingdom of Spain, February 22, 1821
  • The southeastern portion of the Territory of Missouri is admitted to the Union as the State of Missouri (the 24th state) on August 10, 1821. The remainder of the Missouri Territory becomes unorganized.
  • The Territory of Florida is organized, March 30, 1822
  • The Russo-American Treaty establishes the boundary between Russian Alaska and the Oregon Country at the parallel 54°40′ north, January 12, 1825
  • John Quincy Adams becomes the 6th President of the United States on March 4, 1825
  • Winnebago War, 1827
  • Andrew Jackson becomes the 7th President of the United States on March 4, 1829
1830s
1840s
  • William Henry Harrison becomes the 9th President of the United States on March 4, 1841
  • John Tyler becomes the 10th President of the United States upon the death of President William Henry Harrison on April 4, 1841
  • The extralegal Provisional Government of Oregon governs the Oregon Country, May 2, 1843 – August 14, 1848
  • Illinois Mormon War, June 7, 1844 – September 17, 1846
  • Treaty of Wanghia, July 3, 1844
  • The Territory of Florida is admitted to the Union as the State of Florida (the 27th state) on March 3, 1845
  • James K. Polk becomes the 11th President of the United States on March 4, 1845
  • The Republic of Texas is admitted to the Union as the State of Texas (the 28th state) on December 29, 1845
  • Mexican-American War, April 23, 1846 – February 2, 1848
  • Biddle Expedition arrives at Uraga Harbor in Japan, July 20, 1846
  • The southeastern portion of the Territory of Iowa is admitted to the Union as the State of Iowa (the 29th state) on December 28, 1846. The remainder of the Iowa Territory becomes unorganized.
  • Cayuse War, November 29, 1847 – June 11, 1855
  • The southeastern portion of the Territory of Wisconsin is admitted to the Union as the State of Wisconsin (the 30th state) on May 29, 1848. The remainder of the Wisconsin Territory becomes unorganized.
  • The Territory of Oregon is organized, August 14, 1848
  • The Territory of Minnesota is organized, March 3, 1849
  • The extralegal State of Deseret governs the Great Basin region, May 3, 1849 – September 9, 1850
  • Zachary Taylor becomes the 12th President of the United States on March 4, 1849
1850s
  • Millard Fillmore becomes the 13th President of the United States upon the death of President Zachary Taylor on July 9, 1850
  • The State of California is admitted to the Union as the 31st state on September 9, 1850
  • The Territory of New Mexico and the Territory of Utah are organized, September 9, 1850
  • The Territory of Washington is organized, February 8, 1853
  • Franklin Pierce becomes the 14th President of the United States on March 4, 1853
  • Perry Expedition arrives at Uraga Harbor in Japan, July 14, 1853
  • The Territory of Kansas and the Territory of Nebraska are organized, May 20, 1854
  • Sioux Wars, August 19, 1854 – December 29, 1890
  • James Buchanan becomes the 15th President of the United States on March 4, 1857
  • Utah Mormon War, May 28, 1857 – July 8, 1858
  • The eastern portion of the Territory of Minnesota is admitted to the Union as the State of Minnesota (the 32nd state) on May 11, 1858. The remainder of the Minnesota Territory becomes unorganized.
  • The extralegal Territory of Jefferson governs the Southern Rocky Mountains region, October 24, 1859 – February 28, 1861
  • The western portion of the Territory of Oregon is admitted to the Union as the State of Oregon (the 33rd state) on February 14, 1859. The remainder of the Oregon Territory is annexed to the Territory of Washington.
1860s
  • The State of South Carolina becomes the 1st state to secede from the Union on December 20, 1860
  • The State of Mississippi becomes the 2nd state to secede from the Union on January 9, 1861
  • The State of Florida becomes the 3rd state to secede from the Union on January 10, 1861
  • The State of Alabama becomes the 4th state to secede from the Union on January 11, 1861
  • The State of Georgia becomes the 5th state to secede from the Union on January 19, 1861
  • The State of Louisiana becomes the 6th state to secede from the Union on January 26, 1861
  • The eastern portion of the Territory of Kansas is admitted to the Union as the State of Kansas (the 34th state) on January 29, 1861. The remainder of the Kansas territory becomes unorganized.
  • The State of Texas becomes the 7th state to secede from the Union on February 1, 1861
  • The 7 rebellious slave states of South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas create the rival Confederate States of America on February 4, 1861
  • The Territory of Colorado is organized, February 28, 1861
  • The Territory of Nevada is organized, March 2, 1861
  • The Territory of Dakota is organized, March 2, 1861
  • Abraham Lincoln becomes the 16th President of the United States on March 4, 1861
  • A rump government declares itself the Confederate Territory of Arizona on March 16, 1861
  • American Civil War, April 12, 1861 – May 13, 1865
    • Battle of Fort Sumter, April 12, 1861 – April 13, 1861
    • The Commonwealth of Virginia becomes the 8th state to secede from the Union on April 17, 1861
    • Union naval blockade of the Confederacy, April 19, 1861 – April 9, 1865
    • The State of Arkansas becomes the 9th state to secede from the Union on May 6, 1861
    • The Commonwealth of Virginia becomes the 8th state admitted to the Confederacy on May 7, 1861
    • The State of North Carolina becomes the 10th state to secede from the Union on May 20, 1861
    • The State of Arkansas becomes the 9th state admitted to the Confederacy on May 18, 1861
    • The State of North Carolina becomes the 10th state admitted to the Confederacy on May 21, 1861
    • The State of Tennessee becomes the 11th state to secede from the Union on June 8, 1861
    • The State of Tennessee becomes the 11th state admitted to the Confederacy on July 2, 1861
    • First Battle of Bull Run, July 21, 1861
    • A rump government claiming to represent the State of Missouri declares its secession from the Union on October 31, 1861
    • A rump government claiming to represent the Commonwealth of Kentucky declares its secession from the Union on November 20, 1861
    • The rump government of the State of Missouri becomes the 12th state admitted to the Confederacy on November 28, 1861
    • The rump government of the Commonwealth of Kentucky becomes the 13th state admitted to the Confederacy on December 10, 1861
    • The rump government of the Confederate Territory of Arizona becomes the only Confederate Territory on February 14, 1862
    • Battle of Shiloh, April 6, 1862 – April 7, 1862
    • Battle of Antietam, September 17, 1862
    • The Territory of Arizona is organized, February 24, 1863
    • The Territory of Idaho is organized, March 4, 1863
    • Siege of Vicksburg, May 18, 1863 – July 4, 1863
    • The northwestern region of the Commonwealth of Virginia is admitted to the Union as the State of West Virginia (the 35th state) on June 20, 1863
    • Battle of Gettysburg, July 1, 1863 – July 3, 1863
    • President Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation on September 22, 1863
    • Siege of Atlanta, May 7, 1864 – September 2, 1864
    • The Territory of Montana is organized, May 28, 1864
    • The State of Nevada is admitted to the Union as the 36th state on October 31, 1864
    • Battle of Appomattox Courthouse, April 9, 1865
    • Assassination of President Abraham Lincoln in Washington, D.C. on April 14, 1865
      • President Abraham Lincoln dies on April 15, 1865
      • Andrew Johnson becomes 17th President of the United States on April 15, 1865
  • The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution takes effect, December 18, 1865
  • The State of Tennessee becomes the 1st Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 24, 1866
  • The Territory of Nebraska is admitted to the Union as the State of Nebraska (the 37th state) on March 1, 1867
  • President Andrew Johnson is impeached by the United States House of Representatives, February 24, 1868
  • The State of Arkansas becomes the 2nd Confederate State readmitted to the Union on June 22, 1868
  • The State of Florida becomes the 3rd Confederate State readmitted to the Union on June 25, 1868
  • The State of North Carolina becomes the 4th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 4, 1868
  • The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution takes effect, July 9, 1868
  • The State of Louisiana becomes the 5th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 9, 1868
  • The State of South Carolina becomes the 6th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 9, 1868
  • The State of Alabama becomes the 7th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 13, 1868
  • The Territory of Wyoming is organized, July 25, 1868
  • Ulysses S. Grant becomes the 18th President of the United States on March 4, 1869
  • The Transcontinental railroad is completed on May 10, 1869
1870s
  • The Commonwealth of Virginia becomes the 8th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on January 26, 1870
  • The Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, February 3, 1870
  • The State of Mississippi becomes the 9th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on February 23, 1870
  • The State of Texas becomes the 10th Confederate State readmitted to the Union on March 30, 1870
  • The State of Georgia becomes the 11th and last Confederate State readmitted to the Union on July 15, 1870
  • The United States attacks Korea, June 10, 1871 – July 3, 1871
  • Black Hills War, March 17, 1876 – 1877
  • The nation celebrates the Centennial of the United States of America despite news from the Little Bighorn, July 4, 1876
  • The Territory of Colorado is admitted to the Union as the State of Colorado (the 38th state) on August 1, 1876
  • Rutherford B. Hayes becomes the 19th President of the United States on March 4, 1877
1880s
  • James A. Garfield becomes the 20th President of the United States on March 4, 1881
  • Chester A. Arthur becomes the 21st President of the United States upon the assassination of President James Garfield on September 19, 1881
  • The portion of the Dakota Territory south of the 42nd parallel north and west of the Missouri River is annexed to the State of Nebraska, March 28, 1882
  • Grover Cleveland becomes the 22nd President of the United States on March 4, 1885
  • Benjamin Harrison becomes the 23rd President of the United States on March 4, 1889
  • The Territory of Dakota is admitted to the Union as the State of North Dakota and the State of South Dakota (the 39th state and the 40th state) on November 2, 1889[2]
  • The Territory of Montana is admitted to the Union as the State of Montana (the 41st state) on November 8, 1889
  • The Territory of Washington is admitted to the Union as the State of Washington (the 42nd state) on November 11, 1889
1890s

1900s

1910s
1920s
1930s
1940s
1950s
1960s
1970s
1980s
1990s

2000s

By region

States
Federal district
Insular areas
Outlying islands
  • History of Bajo Nuevo Bank
  • History of Baker Island
  • History of Howland Island
  • History of Jarvis Island
  • History of Johnston Atoll
  • History of Kingman Reef
  • History of Midway Atoll
  • History of Navassa Island
  • History of Palmyra Atoll
  • History of Serranilla Bank
  • History of Wake Island

By subject

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n It has been customary to rank the original 13 states not by date of colonial founding, or date of declaration of independence, but by date of ratification of the US Constitution. Subsequent states are ranked by the date of their admission to the Union.
  2. ^ The states of North Dakota and South Dakota were admitted to the Union at precisely the same time. Since the names of the new states were officially published in alphabetical order, it has been customary to consider North Dakota to be the 39th state and South Dakota to be the 40th state.

Further reading

  • Adams, James Truslow, ed. Dictionary of American History (5 Vols. 1940)
  • Kutler, Stanley I. ed. Dictionary of American History (3rd Edition 10 Volumes, 2003)
  • Martin, Michael. Dictionary of American History (Littlefield, Adams 1989)
  • Morris. Richard, ed. Encyclopedia of American History (7th ed. 1996)
  • Purvis, Thomas L. A Dictionary of American History (Blackwell 1997)
  • Schlesinger, Arthur M., Jr. The Almanac of American History ( 2nd ed. 1993)
  • Thompson, Peter, and Chris Cook. Dictionary of American History: From 1763 to the Present (Facts on File, 2000)

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