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20th CENTURY AMERICA

ww-1-parade-new-york-city.jpgThe early years of the 20th century were an amazing time in the history of America.  The first decade brought about extraordinary advances in the history of transportation including the first flight by the Wright brothers as well as Henry Ford pioneering the first Model T.  There were great scientific discoveries such as Albert Einstein's Theory of Relativity and Thomas Edison produced the first silent film “The Great Train Robbery.”   There were historic expeditions and explorers including Robert Peary, who became the first person to reach the North Pole.  On April 18, 1906, San Francisco was hit by one of our nations worst natural disasters, a devastating earthquake which nearly destroyed the city. 

The second decade was overshadowed by America joining the fight in World War I, a bloody war that consumed Europe from 1914 to 1919.  In science news, Ernest Rutherford discovered the structure of an atom and the Spanish Flu Pandemic swept around the world, killing an estimated 50 million.  In 1914, the world marveled as engineers completed the Panama Canal.  On April 15, 1912, the "unsinkable" ship Titanic sank on its maiden voyage, killing at least 1,517 passengers, making it one of the deadliest maritime disasters in history.

The “Roaring 20’s” or the “Jazz Age” as it was known brought tremendous change to America.  With the ratification of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, the manufacture, sale, and transportation of liquor were now illegal creating Prohibition in the United States.  Women’s suffrage made significant gains for women's rights including the 19th Amendment which granted women the right to vote.  It was a time of social change for women, a time of speakeasies, short skirts and the Charleston dance.   In 1927, Babe Ruth made sports history when he hit his record 60th home run, the first ever talking movie The Jazz Singer was created and Charles Lindbergh completes the first solo flight over the Atlantic.  After a decade of optimism and prosperity, it ends tragically with the crash of the stock market on October 24, 1929 which leads America into the Great Depression.

Check out our vintage 20th Century articles