• United States!

    United States: Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Go Now!

    United States
    Explore the vast openness and wildlife found roaming in the western United States, including Theodore Roosevelt National Park (pictured) in North Dakota. Begin Your Journey!

  • Trinidad & Tobago!

    Trinidad & Tobago: Beautiful Coastline. Go Now!

    Trinidad & Tobago
    These Caribbean islands mix Indian, African, and European cultures alongside beautiful beaches. Go Now!

  • Cuba!

    Cuba: Sandy beach. Go Now!

    Cuba
    Many people fear the unknowns of Cuba, but the history, culture, food, and impressive beaches lure many visitors every year. Explore Cuba!

  • Panama!

    Panama: Panama City skyline. Go Now!

    Panama
    Panama is best known for the Panama Canal, but the beaches draw tourists, as does Panama City (pictured), a modern capital quite different from most nearby cities. Explore Panama

  • Mexico!

    Mexico: Sunrise over the mountains in Puerto Vallarta. Go Now!

    Mexico
    Although many people just go for the beaches, Mexico offers impressive mountain vistas (pictured in Puerto Vallarta), great food, and historic ruins that compete with the best in the world. Begin Your Journey!

  • Jamaica!

    Jamaica: Pristine beach. Go Now!

    Jamaica
    Jamaican culture is about relaxation, great foods, friendly competition, and so much more. A good place to start is on the beach. Begin Your Journey!

History of the United States of America

American history begins with the Native Americans or Indians. These people, which spoke hundreds of languages and clung to multiple different identities and histories varied from the nomadic people of the Great Plains to the fishermen and women of the Pacific Northwest. With the arrival of the Europeans most of these people were killed by disease, treated as second class citizens, or (a rare few) intermarried with the immigrating Europeans.

The early European immigrants found themselves in this "New World" for a number of reasons, from fleeing religious persecution to seeking the fortunes of gold and silver. As the Indians were pushed further and further west, the European immigrants found land for the taking, started farms, and soon after discovered the profit in producing cash crops. Unfortunately, these crops required a large amount of labor and the population was sparse, so the African Slave Trade expanded from the Caribbean into modern-day U.S.A.

In 1776 the colonists revolted against the ruling English crown, protesting their lack of representative rights in Parliament, yet still being controlled by English laws. After a war, the Americans, with the help of the French, won independence and their focus continued to shift towards internal affairs and economic opportunities.

Over the next 150 years the country experienced massive growth through purchase (Louisiana and Alaska) and war (much of the American West and southwest from Mexico). However the social atmosphere in the country also continued to change and fights over slavery and state versus federal rights eventually led to the American Civil War (1861-1865), which was won by the north and ended slavery, but not segregation or racism.

After the Civil War, the U.S.A. continued on its path of westward expansion and faced further social growing pains with huge immigration by Europeans fleeing political instability or famines, and the former slave population moving from the south to all parts of the country. With this new labor pool and the help of the industrial revolution, savvy businessmen used these immigrants as cheap labor, which led to a series of legal changes to protect the worker, improving the quality of life, healthcare, communication, and transportation networks.

WWI and WWII forced the U.S.A. onto the international stage despite their best efforts to remain a hermit. This period proved the U.S.A.'s power on the international stage and soon the country because a world power and a leader in innovation from mass production of the car and the production of the airplane to exploiting the usefulness of mass communication networks like television and movies.

Today the U.S.A. continues to change and grow as migration has repeatedly shifted: from abroad to the U.S.A., then from rural to urban, and finally to suburbia, in which nearly every family has their own house, land, and car.

This page was last updated: March, 2013