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Old 08-20-2012, 09:20 PM
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,344,192 times
Reputation: 11862


How much can happen in one century?

Most people usually cite the 20th century as the most 'changeful' decade in history: the changes were indeed spectacular, but I actually think the century which saw the greatest progress/change in human history was actually the 19th century, ESPECIALLY in the United States.

Think of it. We went from basically an agrarian, sustenance type society little difference to that at the close of the Middle Ages in 1500 in 1800, no electricity, no machines, no paved roads.etc to a highly modernized nation in 1900. In 1800, the US population was a mere 5,308,430! That's about the population as Washington State or Maryland. Even NYC was a large town of 60,000 (at the same time European cities could boast hundreds of thousands). It's boundaries hadn't changed all that much since the 13 colonies, almost 200 years prior! Tennessee had been admitted to the Union in 1796.

Of course huge changes came in the 19th century: the war of 1812 and the final break with Britain, the US annexed a ton of territory, the Westward expansion, the worldwide agrarian and Industrial revolutions, the Louisiana purchase, annexation of Mexican and Spanish territories, the American Civil War, the Spanish-American and Philippine Wars...in a sense, this 'age of expansion', IMO, included when New Mexico was Arizona and New Mexico became the last states in the lower 48 in 1912.
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