The Hessian Nanny State

Every year, men between the ages 16 and 30 were mustered in their town square for possible induction into Hesse-Kassel’s army. There were formal exemptions based on the needs of the state, but if one wasn’t gainfully employed, you were drafted along with doctors and those convicted of crimes. During the American Revolution, 7% of the 300,000 citizens of Hesse-Kassel were in the army, either being trained or on garrison duty or deployed in the service of King George III.

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Western Exploration Plans B4 Lewis & Clark

Sending an expedition from the Mississippi to the West coast was not a new idea. Jefferson wanted an expedition of this sort as far back as the 1750s when he was a little boy. Now, as Secretary of State and later President, he could pursue his dream.

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The U.S. Population Shift Begins

Great Britain also restricted emigration between 1800 and 1820 because it was locked into a life and death struggle with France. This prevented English citizens from coming to their former colony. Famine and poverty in Ireland drove many to leave the Emerald Isle. The Napoleonic Wars limited shipping to carry passengers, but there were other pressures on citizens all over Europe that encouraged emigration to the United States.

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Becoming Slaves to King Cotton

By the time the American Revolution ended in 1783, the Industrial Revolution was gathering steam. English inventions in the textile industry were making it cheaper to manufacture linen and wool…

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Avoiding the Foreign Entanglements Vise

France tried to intimidate the U.S. to join its fight against Britain. England appealed to U.S. merchants desire for profits. The 1794 Jay Treaty was a bet that England would prevail in any fight against France.

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Origins of the U.S. Post Office

My bet there’s not one of you who have not cursed the U.S. Postal Service whether you are standing in line. Or, when the cost of postage went up. Or…

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The Origin of the U.S. Dollar

In the 18th Century, there weren’t official exchange rates for currencies. Before and during the American Revolution, in the Thirteen Colonies there were at least 17, that’s right, 17 different…

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