By war-making and shrewd negotiating, the 11th president expanded U.S. territory by a third.
IN FEBRUARY 28, 1848, President James K. Polk received a visit from Ambrose Sevier of Arkansas, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, bearing bad news.
It's a city framed by the breathtaking peaks of Mount St. Helens and Mount Hood, only a 30-minute bike ride from the lush farmland of the Willamette Valley, and driven by a powerful sense of community that allows its citizens to hold on to the best of its pioneer past while collaborating on the future. Randy Gragg explains why American Heritage’s Great American Place Award goes to...
ON THE LAST THURSDAY OF EVERY MONTH, ALBERTA STREET in Portland, Oregon, turns into a long buffet of grass-roots creativity.
The world about us is strewn with relics that are quietly eloquent of the struggle that ended half a century ago
Finger some old magazines from the world War II years.
The first caravans lumbered across two thousand miles of dangerous, inhospitable wilderness in 1843, the year of the Great Migration. To a surprising degree it’s still possible to follow something very like their route.
A couple of miles south of Marysville, Kansas, not far from the east bank of the Big Blue River, lies one of the most moving places on the Oregon Trail.
A small but dependable pleasure of travel is encountering such blazons of civic pride as “Welcome to the City of Cheese, Chairs, Children, and Churches!”
Stephen Vincent Benét confessed that he had fallen in love with American placenames, and George R.
For many children who accompanied their parents west across the continent in the 1840s and '50s, the journey was a supreme adventure
The historian Francis Parkman, strolling around Independence, Missouri, in 1846, remarked upon the “multitude of healthy children’s faces … peeping out from under the covers of the wagons.” Two decades later a traveler there wrote of husbands packing up “sunb
“Surveyor, mountain man, soldier, businessman, wanderer, captain of emigrants, farmer…he was himself the westward-moving frontier.”
In medias res: Fort Laramie on the Oregon-California Trail, June 27,1846, a day of reckoning.
Man, Land, and History in the Deepest Gorge on Earth
Hells Canyon is awesome. There is no other single word that can adequately describe it. Incredibly deep, austerely magnificent, it slashes between the states of Oregon and Idaho like a raw and gaping wound.
The tragic journey of the Donner Party
To the brothers George and Jacob Donner the way to California seemed clear and simple.
All that is left now of Grandpa’s village is a handful of well-worn homes on the peninsula side of Shoalwater Bay (now officially Willapa Harbor—but the water remains shoal), a small estuary of the Pacific Ocean in the sparsely populated southwestern corner of the state of Wash