The American Civil War was the first major conflict that was photographed extensively, bringing shocking and often horrific images to the front pages and into people's living rooms. Photography was extremely popular in the US at the time, and many photographers did not hold back from snapping even the most graphic of post-battle images to illustrate the horrors of war. Original captions were often scrawled below or on the backs of photos - you can read a few here in quotes.
Several of the images in this gallery are graphic in nature and may be disturbing.
America's first great songwriter, Stephen Foster, wrote 200 songs but died a penniless alcoholic at 37.
The first officially formed regiment of northern black soldiers who fought in the Civil War.
Ten years after American troops arrived in South Vietnam, communists seized Saigon in an attack that brought the war to a startling conclusion.
The 1968 Democratic National Convention saw a clash of political visions on the convention floor and violence outside on the streets of Chicago.
With over a million already dead, heroic American soldiers and nurses served in the closing battles of World War I.
John Scopes' free speech trial pitted science against religion after the teacher presented Charles Darwin's theory of evolution in a Tennessee school.
The country's oldest beauty contest has become a battleground and a barometer for the position of women in society.
On June 6, 1944, Allied troops invaded Normandy, fighting to free Europe from Nazi occupation and end World War II.