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John Quincy Adams

The sixth President was John Quincy Adams, son of Washington’s successor. He was a good and learned man, but his election had to be decided by the House of Representatives, as neither he nor any of his three rivals received a majority of the electoral votes. During his term, in 1826, on the fiftieth anniversary… Read More

Missouri Compromise

The United States had changed greatly during these years. Before the Revolution, Negro slaves had been owned in all the states. As slaves were not needed in the North, where every one worked, and as many people thought that the colored race had as much right as the white to be free, one Northern state… Read More

Grover Cleveland (1st term)

In 1885, Grover Cleveland became the twenty–second President of the United States. He was the first Democratic President seen in the White House for twenty–four years. Even some Republicans voted for him in preference to Blaine, their own candidate, because they knew he would uphold the civil–service reform. Cleveland, the son of a minister, was… Read More

Kansas Becomes A Free State

It was in 1861 that Kansas joined the Union as a free state, and the thirty–fourth star was added to our flag. In mentioning Old Glory, Senator Charles Sumner once spoke these words, which every American citizen should remember: “The stripes of alternate red and white proclaim the original union of thirteen states to maintain… Read More

Battles of 1814

Two exciting engagements took place in the North, in 1814. One was the battle of Lundys Lane, or Niagra, so near the falls of that name that the roar of the water rose above the din of battle. Here, one of the officers under General Scott pointed out a battery to Colonel Miller, asking him… Read More

Tripolitan Pirates Break Treaty

During the next seven years, after the Tripolitan treaty, American shipping was left alone; but after the War of 1812, the Barbary pirates, thinking the British had destroyed our navy, again began to attack our ships. They also ordered the American consul to leave Algiers, and he saved himself and family from slavery only by… Read More

Peace With Spain

San Juan was sacked near the end of the sixteenth century by the famous seaman Drake; pirates of various nations visited the island from time to time; and it was also attacked by British men–of–war. In spite of all this, however, the Spanish settlers prospered, and as they were better governed or more submissive than… Read More


The United States, having been cut off from commerce with Europe for some time, had learned to depend more upon itself. Cotton and woolen mills had been built, discoveries of coal had given a new start to the iron trade, and American wits were hard at work over many new inventions. Among other things, matches… Read More

McKinley’s Agreements and Treaties

As agreed in Washington, the Peace Commission met in Paris on October 1, 1898, and on December 10 signed a new Treaty of Paris. By this treaty, Spain gave up all her rights in Cuba, and ceded Puerto Rico and the Philippines to the United States, which in turn was to pay Spain $20,000,000. It… Read More

Washington Frees Some of His Slaves

The news of Washington’s death struck every heart with dismay. Congress broke up in silence, but, on assembling again the next day; it decided that the nation should wear mourning for thirty days to honor the great man who was, as Chief Justice Marshall said, “First in war, first in peace, and first in the… Read More