Author Joseph R. Conlin's award-winning teaching and writing styles are reflected in this colorful and engaging look at the individuals, events, and ideas that have shaped our nation's past. Organized into short, easy-to-read chapters, this text sets the story in a political context, weaving in social, cultural, economic, intellectual, constitutional, diplomatic, and military events along the way. "How They Lived" vignettes bring historical stories to life and emphasize the human and social dimensions of history. Chapter timelines illustrate the relationships between various events, and show how historical figures and movements fit into the bigger picture of the era being studied. Chapter after chapter, The American Past will be your guide on a fascinating, eye-opening walk through the years gone by.
"In my view [Conlin] has two related strengths: clear, compelling writing and pithy profiles of individual human beings who populate the text. This is a story with colorfully drawn characters. It works very well as a relatively traditional but very smart political history."
Joseph Conlin was born in Philadelphia and educated at Villanova University (A.B.) and the University of Wisconsin (M.A., Ph.D.). He taught American history at half a dozen colleges and universities, spending most of his career at California State University, Chico. He was a Fulbright Professor in Rome and Salzburg and was twice Visiting Senior Lecturer at the Social History Centre at Warwick University, England. For 30 years (60 semesters), with a few subtracted for sabbaticals, he taught between one and four sections of the United States history survey course each term, a total of about 200 times. He won four awards for excellence in teaching. Conlin has written a dozen books, about 70 articles in scholarly journals and magazines of popular history, some 100 book reviews in a variety of journals, and more newspaper journalism than he can or cares to remember. Several of his published essays and one book were awarded "best of the year" prizes.
1. Discoveries: Indians, Europeans, and the Americas About 15,000 B.C. to A.D. 1550. 2. England at Home, England Overseas: The Roanoke and Jamestown Colonies 1530-1607. 3. Thirteen Colonies: England's North American Empire 1608-1732. 4. Old World Intentions, New World Facts of Life: Colonial Society in the 1600s. 5. Outsiders: Colonial Indians and Africans. 6. Contest for a Continent: French America and British America 1608-1763. 7. Family Quarrels: Dissension in the Colonies 1763-1770. 8. From Riot to Rebellion: The Road to Independence 1770-1776. 9. The War for Independence: The Rebels Defeated, The Rebels Victorious 1776-1781. 10. Inventing a Country: American Constitutions 1781-1789. 11. We the People: Putting the Constitution to Work 1789-1800. 12. The Age of Thomas Jefferson: Expanding the Nation 1800-1815. 13. Nationalist Stirrings: Culture, Politics, Diplomacy 1815-1824. 14. Machines, Cotton, Land: The American Economy and Society 1790-1824. 15. The People's Hero: Andrew Jackson and a New Era 1824-1830. 16. In the Shadow of Old Hickory: Personalities and Politics 1830-1842. 17. Religion and Reform: Evangelicals and Enthusiasts 1800-1850. 18. The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the South. 19. From Sea to Shining Sea: Expansion 1820-1848. 20. Apples of Discord: Lands, Slaves, Immigrants 1844-1856. 21. The Collapse of the Union: From Debate to Violence 1854-1861. 22. Tidy Plans, Ugly Realities: The Civil War through 1862. 23. Driving Dixie Down: General Grant's War of Attrition 1863-1865. 24. Aftermath: The Era of Reconstruction 1863-1877. 25. Patronage and Pork: National Politics 1876-1892. 26. Technology, Industry, and Business: Economic Change in the Late Nineteenth Century. 27. Living with Leviathan: Coping with Big Business and Great Wealth. 28. We Who Built America: Working People 1860-1900. 29. Big Cities: Urban America 1865-1917. 30. The Last Frontier: Winning and Losing the West 1865-1900. 31. The Nation's Bone and Sinew: Agriculture and Agrarians 1865-1896. 32. A Pivotal Decade: McKinley, Segregation, and Empire 1890-1901. 33. Teddy Roosevelt's Americans: The Middle Class Comes of Age 1890-1917. 34. A Wave of Reform: The Progressives 1890-1916. 35. Imperialism and Domestic Politics: A Progressive Democratic President 1901-1916. 36. Over There: The United States and World War I 1914-1918. 37. Over Here: The Home Front 1917-1920. 38. A Troubled Nation: Postwar America 1919-1923. 39. The New Era: When Business Ran the Country 1923-1929. 40. Hard Times: The Great Depression 1930-1933. 41. Rearranging America: FDR and the New Deal 1933-1938. 42. Going to War Again: America and the World 1933-1942. 43. Finest Hours: The U.S. in the Second World War 1942-1945. 44. "The Bomb" and the Cold War: The Truman Presidency, 1945-1953. 45. "Happy Days": The Popular Culture of the Fifties 1947-1963. 46. Political Strategies: The Eisenhower and Kennedy Presidencies 1953-1963. 47. Race and Rights: The African American Struggle for Civil Equality 1953-1968. 48. Lyndon Johnson's Great Society: A War Destroys a Reformer 1961-1968. 49. Presidents on the Griddle: Nixon, Ford, and Carter 1968-1980. 50. Morning in America: The Age of Ronald Reagan 1980-1992. 51. Millennium Years: Emigrants, Immigrants, Religion, Cults, Politics 1960-2012. 52. Only Yesterday: Politics and the Economy 1993-2012.