The Fifties

The essays in this section have been written by leading scholars of American history. They provide additional depth on events and ideas referred to in the introductory essay and, in some cases, different interpretations by historians looking at the same events. These essays are particularly useful as informational texts to introduce your students to one of the most exciting aspects of studying history—understanding the past from a variety of perspectives.

is Communism Un-American, by Eugene Dennis (1947). (National Archives)

Anti-Communism in the 1950s

Author: Wendy Wall Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:
Family fallout shelter, ca. 1957. (National Archives)

Cold War, Warm Hearth

Author: Elaine Tyler May Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:

The Catcher in the Rye: The Voice of Alienation

Author: Timothy Aubry Curriculum Subjects: Literature Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Chuck Berry - Collection of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

“Fun, Fun Rock ’n’ Roll High School”

Author: Glenn C. Altschuler and Robert O. Summers Curriculum Subjects: Art, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

Essays from Other Sub-Eras

Integrated class at Anacostia High School in Washington, DC, 1957. (Library of C

A Local and National Story: The Civil Rights Movement in Postwar Washington, DC

Author: Wendell E. Pritchett Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Landing at Ellis Island, ca. 1902 (LC-USZ62-12595)

Coming to America: Ellis Island and New York City

Author: Vincent J. Cannato Curriculum Subjects: Economics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

Different Perspectives on the Civil Rights Movement

Author: Anthony J. Badger Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Photograph of Eleanor Roosevelt, July 20, 1933. (Library of Congress Prints and

Eleanor Roosevelt as First Lady

Author: Maurine Beasley Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:
Oath of Allegiance of Mikael Amerikian, 1931 (NARA ARC # 595054)

Immigrant Fiction: Exploring an American Identity

Author: Phillip Lopate Curriculum Subjects: Literature Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Assembly room for chassis and motors, Detroit, MI, 1929 (LOC, P&P)

Motor City: The Story of Detroit

Author: Thomas J. Sugrue Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Sandra Day O'Connor, ca. 1982. (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Div.)

Sandra Day O’Connor: A Life of Action

Author: Meryl Justin Chertoff Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

The Civil Rights Movement: Major Events and Legacies

Author: James T. Patterson Curriculum Subjects: Art, Government and Civics, Literature Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

The Korean War

Author: Allan R. Millett Curriculum Subjects: World History Grade Levels: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
The Nixons at the Great Wall of China, February 1972. (NARA ARC id 194421)

The United States and China during the Cold War

Author: Warren I. Cohen Curriculum Subjects: World History Grade Levels:
Conference of Republican National Committee Women, 1927. (LOC, P&P)

Women in American Politics in the Twentieth Century

Author: Sara Evans Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+