Why Don’t More Americans Remember the 1897 Massacre of Pennsylvania Coal Miners?

The Mostly Eastern European Victims Were Forgotten Because of an Ensuing Backlash Against Immigrant Workers

At the western entrance of the coal patch town of Lattimer, in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, sits a rough-cut shale boulder, about 8 feet tall, surrounded by neatly trimmed bushes. A bronze pickax and a shovel are attached to the boulder, smaller pieces of coal rest at its base, and an American flag flies high above it.

Locals and union members sometimes refer to the boulder as the “Rock of Remembrance” or the “Rock of Solidarity.” Still others call it the Lattimer Massacre Memorial. It was erected to memorialize immigrant coal …

The 19th Century Labor Movement That Brought Black and White Arkansans Together

In 1888, Small Farmers, Sharecroppers, and Industrial Workers Organized to Fight Inequality

Today, when Americans think about the tradition of political protest to protect democracy, they often recall the mid-20th century, when millions of Americans participated in the civil rights movement and …

Why George Bailey Is the American Jesus

Reflecting a Postwar Religious Revival, the Long-Suffering Hero Played by Jimmy Stewart Lives a Life of Self-Sacrifice and Resists Temptation

In the 15 years after World War II, a religious revival swept through America. Records were set for church attendance and new church construction, a succession of religious books …

Frederick Douglass’s Love-Hate Relationship With America

Historian David Blight Tackles the Great Abolitionist's Contradictions and His Enduring Legacy

From his youth, as a slave growing up in antebellum Maryland, Frederick Douglass saw the double-ness of American life. He recognized the gulf between the nation’s enlightened principles and its …