Trustees | Historical Literacy

10 Things Everyone Should Know About American History

May 22, 2020 by Allen Guelzo Download PDF Press Release

Why do we teach U.S. history and government to students? The answer is simple: to prepare students for engaged and informed citizenry, the essential ingredient for preserving the American republic. Unfortunately, ACTA’s most recent What Will They Learn?® survey of the core curricula at over 1,100 colleges and universities found that only 18% of institutions require students to take a single course in U.S. history or government. 10 Things Everyone Should Know About American History takes readers through pivotal moments in American history and illustrates the contemporary importance of our past. From our nation’s remarkably unique Founding to America’s victory in the Cold War, Professor Allen C. Guelzo, the senior research scholar in the Council of the Humanities and director of the Initiative on Politics and Statesmanship in the James Madison Program at Princeton University, identifies what he deems to be 10 critical moments in United States history.


Launched in 1995, we are the only organization that works with alumni, donors, trustees, and education leaders across the United States to support liberal arts education, uphold high academic standards, safeguard the free exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that the next generation receives an intellectually rich, high-quality college education at an affordable price.

Discover More