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This test is a variety of subjects from people, places, events, inventions, etc. throughout U.S. history.  In brief, it's history humbled to the trivial details. Let's see how much you remember from either your History classes, or watching the History Channel on TV shall we?


1. Which English nobleman was executed for treason in 1618, even though he named his settlement after Queen Elizabeth I?

2. The first Rock n' Roll singer to make Billboard's best seller charts was nicknamed, crazy man crazy. Who is it?

3. Harry Houdini's real name is Erik Weisz.  During WWI, Houdini used his talents to help America by training American troops to:
(a) Teaching Marines how to catch bullets between their teeth.
(b) Teaching Sailors how to survive for a long time under water.
(c) Teaching Army Soldiers how to escape out of handcuffs.

4.Who said, "Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth."?

(a) George Washington
(b) Thomas Jefferson
(c)Abraham Lincoln
(d) Franklin Roosevelt

5.  What volcano erupted on May 18, 1980 killing 57 people?
(a) Kilauea in Hawaii
(b) Mt. St. Helens, Washington
(c) Mt. Wrangell, Alaska

6.Annie Oakley is said to have been one great shot with a gun. And to prove it she is said to have shot the ashes off a cigarette held in the mouth of who:
(a)Kaiser Wilhelm II
(b) Teddy Roosevelt
(c) Czar Nicholas II

7.Auguste Barholdi designed the Statue of Liberty's basic shape. But which famous architect designed the framework?

8.Who discovered the Mississippi River?
(a) Hernando Cortes
(b) Francisco Vasquez de Coronado
(c) Hernando De Soto

9.Artist Emanuel Leutze painted the famous "Washington Crossing the Delaware" picture. So which way was George going when he crossed?
(a) From Pennsylvania to New Jersey
(b) From New Jersey to Pennsylvania
(c) From Delaware to Pennsylvania

10.What is the oldest city in America?
(a) St. Augustine, Florida
(b) Jamestown, Virginia
(c) Plymouth, Massachusets
(d) Williamsburg, Virginia

11."Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition" was originated by Chaplain Howell Forgy during which war?

(a) U.S. Civil War
(b) Spanish-American War
(c) World War I
(d) World War II

12.What year was it?  The Titanic sank, and Massachusetts became the first state to adopt a minimum wage law?
(a) 1919
(b) 1902
(c) 1912
(d) None of the above.

13.We've all heard about "The shot heard round the world" that got the Revolutionary War started, right? OK, so in which town did this so-called shot actually get shot?
(a) Concord, Massachusetts
(b) Saratoga, New York
(c) Trenton, New Jersey
(d) Lexington, Massachusetts

14.This is his real name: Roldolpho Alfonso Rafaelo Pierre Filibert Guglielmi di Valentina d'Antonguolla. Which name is he more known as in film?

15. We all know that Francis Scott Key wrote the words to the Star Spangled Banner at Fort McHenry.  OK, now which town was Fort McHenry suppose to be protecting?
(a) Baltimore, Maryland
(b) Arlington, Virginia
(c) Boston, Massachusetts

16.The Libery Bell when rung rings in what tone?
(a) E flat
(b) B flat
(c) F flat
(d) It has no tone due to the crack.


17.In name Pennsylvania on the Liberty Bell isn't spelled correctly. True or False?

18.Who said, "To be great is to be misunderstood"?
(a) Henry David Thoreau
(b) Denis Leary
(c) Ralph Waldo Emerson
(d) Abraham Lincoln


19.Woody Guthrie understood the power of music to make a political statement. So on his guitar he had which inscription:
(a) "A weapon on the side of freedom."
(b) "This machine kills fascists."
(c) "This machine surrounds hate and forces it to surrender."

20. In 1965, Ralph Nadar wrote a book that severely criticized the lack of safety in cars.  He particularly singled out which model as his main example?
(a) The Corvair
(b) The Pinto
(c) The Corvette
(d) The Volkswagen Beetle

21. Who was the first president to travel outside the continental US while he was in office?


22.Who was the first American man to orbit the earth?
(a) Neil Armstrong
(b) Buzz Aldrin
(c) John Glenn


23.Ok, it's 1923 and you're going shopping. List the following items in order of cheapest to expensive:  Kodak Camera, A Steamship Ticket from New York to Boston and a Lawnmower.


24.Who said, "Yesterday, December 7, 1941 --- a date that will live in infamy --- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by Naval and Air Forces of the Empire of Japan."

(a) Franklin D. Roosevelt
(b) Harry Truman
(c) General MacArthur
(d) George Patton


25. What was the first video to ever be played on MTV?
(a) "Video Killed the Radio Star" by the Buggles
(b) "Like a Virgin" by Madonna
(c) "Beat It" by Michael Jackson



26.The Holland Tunnel in New York was the first underwater automobile tunnel and allowed people to go from New York to New Jersey.  It opened in 1927 and what was the toll fee?
(a) 5 cents
(b) 15 cents
(c)  50 cents
(d)  1 dollar


27.What was the first state to ratify the constitution?
(a) Delaware
(b) New York
(c) Virginia
(d) Pennsylvania


28.Of all the states, which one is the ONLY state that borders only one other state?

(a) New Hampshire
(b) Maine
(c) Washington
(d) Alaska

29.What toy was invented by the son of famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright?

(a) Lincoln Logs
(b) Legos
(c) The Erector Set
(d) Waffle Blocks

30. Garret A. Morgan invented this which makes us come and go.
(a) Stop Watch
(b) Battery operated Clocks
(c) Traffic Light
(d) Automatic Transmission

31.George Washington Carver is said to have invented buttermilk.
True or False?

32.The most famous Wright Brothers are Orville and Wilbur. But Mrs. Wright really had more sons. True or False?

33.The railroad not only joined this country from East to West, but it also created another timely invention in 1883. What is it?

34.Of all the monuments in DC, which one was designed by a 21-year old female architecture student?

35. What is the name of the statue that sits on top of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, DC?

(a) The Statue of Democracy
(b) The Statue of Justice
(c)  The Statue of Freedom
(d)  The Statue of Peace

36.In what US City is the largest Post Office?
(a) New York
(b) Los Angeles
(c) Chicago
(d) Washington, DC

37. The person who invented COBOL was:
(a) Connie Bolwin
(b) Grace Murray Hopper
(c) Carol Bolton Lindsey
(d) Mae Jennison

38. Female chemist Patsy Sherman one day  spilled a fluoro-chemical-latex emulsion on someone's sneaker. They just tried and tried to get it off and well they could not get the chemical off the shoe. As a result, what product was developed?

(a) Crazy Glue
(b) Permanent Marker Ink
(c) Scotchguard
(d) Red Dye # 5


39.Which of the following presidents is NOT on Mt. Rushmore?
(a) Thomas Jefferson
(b) Theodore Roosevelt
(c) Franklin Roosevelt
(d) Abraham Lincoln

40.One day in 1950 Frank MacNamara was eating in a restaurant and got so embarrassed that that he vowed this would never happen again. So as a result, what got invented?

(a) The New York Restaurant Revue
(b) Smoke-free dining
(c) The clip-on tie.
(d) The Diners Club credit card.

41.The breakfast drink "Tang!" was first invented for NASA astronauts. True or False?

42.Folklore produces heroes. Some real. Some not. So, is Casey Jones real or just an embellishment?

43.You know the saying, "If it ain't broke don't fix it"?  Well, many companies get over-zealous for marketing ideas. And, they soon realize it flops.  In 1993, Pepsi came out with a new ad to promote this type of drink because being "clear" seemed to be a fad then. What was it?

(a) Pepsi Lite
(b) Crystal Pepsi
(c) Pepsi Clear
(d) Sparkle Pepsi

44. What is the name of that famous Arch in St. Louis Missouri?
(A) The Arch de' Triumph
(B) The Arch of East & West
(C) The Gateway Arch
(D) Midwest Arch of Unity

45.In the movie, "King Kong" the ape climbs the empire state building and while doing so an airplane crashed into it. Is this Hollywood or did a plane really crash into the Empire State building?

46.McDonalds comes out with tons of gimmicks to sells it's burgers and such.  But in 1962 they introduced a new product that just bombed. What was it?

(a) McChicken Soup
(b) The Hula Burger
(c) The Carrot Shake
(d) The McTofu Burger


47. Douglas Engelbart created the mouse as we know it today on our computer. He patented it in which year?

(a) 1963
(b) 1970
(c) 1981
(d) 1993


48.This president was shot in 1881 one very hot summer day in D.C. Doctor's said he would not survive unless the room was cooled down. And thus air-conditioning was invented by taking blocks of ice and blowing air across it around the room.  Name the president whose life and death situation created air-conditioning?

(a) Abraham Lincoln
(b) Grover Cleveland
(c) James Garfield
(d) James Monroe

49.Who came first?  Bugs Bunny or Donald Duck?

50.Who came first? Mr. Potato Head or The Hoola Hoop?

51.Who is the man who is said to have invented the "infomercial" in the 1950's?

(a) Sam Walton
(b) George Foreman
(c) Ron Popeil
(d) Joe Black 

52.On May 10, 1869 the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific railroads were joined to complete the first transcontinental railroad. In what state did this happen?
(a) Colorado
(b) Utah
(c) Kansas
(d) Nevada

53. Which gangster is credited for starting Las Vegas with the Flamingo Hotel?

54.The world's first oil well was dug where?
(a) Junea, Alaska
(b) Corpus Cristi, Texas
(c) Tulsa, Oklahoma
(d) Titusville, Pennsylvania

55.In 1981, John DeLorean wowed America with his DMC-12 car. The distinctive exterior look is because of which metal?
(a) Aluminum
(b) Stainless Steel
(c) Chrome
(d) Brass

56.Back in 1924, how much would you have paid for a Model T Roadster?

(a) $65
(b) $165
(c)  $265
(d)  $1,065

57. In the 1950's Bette Nesmith - yes the mom of the Mike Nesmith of the Monkees invented what product that helped millions of secretaries?

(a) Self-carboning paper
(b) Typewriter ribbon in cartridges
(c)  The daisy wheel font for electric typewriters
(d)  White Out correction fluid

58. Who was the first person to sign the Declaration of Independence?
(a) John Hancock
(b) Thomas Jefferson
(c)  Samuel Adams
(d)  Ben Franklin

59. Who said, "I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country?"

(a) Nathan Hale
(b) Benedict Arnold
(c)  Francis Scott Key
(d)  John Paul Jones

60. OK, confused? Then who said, "I have not yet begun to fight?"

(a) Patrick Henry
(b) John Paul Jones
(c) Gen. Lafayette
(d) Gen. Custer


62. In the 1830's the US gov't forced the local natives out of their land in Georgia and marched them to Oklahoma. Thousands died along the way and it became known as "The Trail of Tears."  Which native American born people suffered this tragedy?

(a) Cherokee
(b) Sioux
(c) Comanche
(d) Apache


63, On April 19, 1995 the Oklahoma City bombing took place. This SAME date was the 2nd anniversary of what other incident in the US?

(a) World Trade Center Bombing
(b) Federal Raid at Waco
(c) Federal Raid at Ruby Ridge
(d) Federal Force of Montana Freemen

64.In 1866 this president signed a bill authorizing the use of the Metric System in the US?

(a) Thomas Jefferson
(b) Grover Cleveland
(c) Andrew Johnson
(d) James Monroe

65.Who wrote "The Feminine Mystique?"
(a) Betty Friedan
(b) Gloria Steinem
(c) Helen Gurley Brown
(d) Dr. Ruth

66. The Statue of Liberty is no slim lady.  She is 111' 1" from her tippy toes to the top of her head and weighs 156 tons.  How thick is her waistline?

(a) 15 feet
(b) 150 feet
(c)  35 feet
(d) 135 feet

67. Emma Lazarus wrote the inscription that is on The Statue of Liberty..."Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning....?? to do what?

(a) to breath free
(b) to live free
(c) to be free
(d) to go free


68.Elijah Graves Otis invented this which greatly improved the development on high-rise buildings?

69.This is the first state to secede from the Union in 1860:

(a) Georgia
(b) Alabama
(c) North Carolina
(d) South Carolina

70. President Andrew Johnson bought Alaska for 2 cents an acre from ____?

(a) Canada
(b) Russia
(c) United Kingdom
(d) The Eskimos

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Credit Sources for Trivia Questions:
These questions are copyrighted by A&E Television that owns the History Channel.  Questions are excerpts  from their Great American History Quiz published by Warner Books © 2000 and written by Charles Norlander, Howard Blumenthal and Dana Calderwood.  
Some questions have been re-designed by me for easier understanding.
These books have hundreds of questions.  Please buy them if you want to enjoy more.

For a lot of great fun historical facts,  and to play live on-line animated history trivia visit The History Channel website also.

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