American History Since 1865: Quiz! Trivia

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American History Since 1865: Quiz! Trivia - Quiz

Below is an interesting quiz on American history since 1865. This period marked the end of one era of US history and the beginning of another. The year 1865 saw the end of the American civil war with the Confederate States' surrender, beginning the Reconstruction era of U. S. History. Take our quiz and test your knowledge on the most memorable events since that year and other significant ones that followed.


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    This American social reformer won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931 after founding the Hull House in Chicago, where she promoted peace and women's rights.

    • A.

      Jane Addams

    • B.

      Susan B Anthony

    • C.

      Clara Barton

    • D.

      Emily Thudreau

    Correct Answer
    A. Jane Addams
    Explanation
    Jane Addams is the correct answer because she was an American social reformer who founded the Hull House in Chicago. The Hull House was a settlement house that provided various services to immigrants and the poor. Addams was known for her work in promoting peace and women's rights, which led to her being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.

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  • 2. 

    "Nattering nabobs of negativism" was a term coined by ________________, referring to angst-ridden opponents of the _________________.

    • A.

      Richard Nixon / Vietnam War

    • B.

      Spiro Agnew / Vietnam War

    • C.

      George H.W. Bush / First Gulf War

    • D.

      Dean Acheson / Korean War

    Correct Answer
    B. Spiro Agnew / Vietnam War
    Explanation
    Spiro Agnew, the Vice President of the United States under Richard Nixon, coined the term "nattering nabobs of negativism." He used this term to describe the angst-ridden opponents of the Vietnam War. Agnew believed that these critics were excessively negative and constantly complaining about the war effort. This term became associated with Agnew's outspoken and confrontational style of politics during his time in office.

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  • 3. 

    This reformer of the 19th/20th centuries was very active in the cause of women's suffrage and abolitionism.

    • A.

      Jane Addams

    • B.

      Susan B Anthony

    • C.

      Clara Barton

    • D.

      Emily Thudreau

    Correct Answer
    A. Jane Addams
    Explanation
    Jane Addams was a prominent figure in the women's suffrage and abolitionist movements during the 19th and 20th centuries. She was a social reformer and activist who co-founded the Hull House in Chicago, which provided support and resources to immigrants and the working class. Addams was a strong advocate for women's right to vote and played a crucial role in the suffrage movement. She also actively campaigned against slavery and fought for the rights of African Americans. Given her significant contributions to both women's suffrage and abolitionism, Jane Addams is the most fitting answer to this question.

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  • 4. 

    The space vehicle that carried 3 American astronauts to the moon in 1969 was called:

    • A.

      Apollo II

    • B.

      Gemini VIII

    • C.

      Mercury I

    • D.

      Apollo XI

    Correct Answer
    D. Apollo XI
    Explanation
    In 1969, the space vehicle that carried 3 American astronauts to the moon was called Apollo XI. The Apollo program was a series of manned space missions conducted by NASA, with Apollo XI being the mission that successfully landed the first humans on the moon. This historic mission was led by Neil Armstrong, who famously took the first steps on the lunar surface, followed by Buzz Aldrin. The Apollo XI mission marked a significant milestone in space exploration and is remembered as one of humanity's greatest achievements.

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  • 5. 

    The Bakke decision upheld what general principle?

    • A.

      Racial segregation.

    • B.

      Primary school accessibility.

    • C.

      Affirmitive Action.

    • D.

      The Federal right to tax the income.

    Correct Answer
    C. Affirmitive Action.
    Explanation
    The Bakke decision upheld the general principle of Affirmative Action. Affirmative Action refers to policies and practices designed to provide equal opportunities for historically marginalized groups, such as racial and ethnic minorities, women, and individuals with disabilities. The decision, made by the Supreme Court in 1978, ruled that race could be considered as a factor in college admissions, but strict racial quotas were not permissible. This decision affirmed the importance of promoting diversity and addressing past discrimination through proactive measures.

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  • 6. 

    Hugo Black, Supreme Court Justice from 1937 to 1971, in known for ardently defending:

    • A.

      Racial desegregation.

    • B.

      Civil liberties.

    • C.

      Affirmative Action.

    • D.

      Social equality.

    Correct Answer
    B. Civil liberties.
    Explanation
    Hugo Black, a Supreme Court Justice from 1937 to 1971, is known for ardently defending civil liberties. Throughout his career, Black consistently supported the protection of individual rights and freedoms, including the First Amendment rights of free speech, press, and religion. He believed in the importance of safeguarding civil liberties as a cornerstone of American democracy and often wrote opinions that emphasized the broad interpretation of these rights. Black's commitment to civil liberties made him a prominent figure in shaping constitutional law and protecting individual freedoms during his tenure on the Supreme Court.

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  • 7. 

    Malcolm X helped lead this group during the 1960s, which rejected Christianity as a religion of white people. Muhammad Ali was a prominent member.

    • A.

      Black Muslims.

    • B.

      Black Panthers.

    • C.

      Black Power.

    • D.

      NAACP.

    Correct Answer
    A. Black Muslims.
    Explanation
    The correct answer is Black Muslims. Malcolm X played a significant role in leading this group during the 1960s, advocating for the empowerment and liberation of black people. The Black Muslims rejected Christianity, viewing it as a religion associated with white people, and instead embraced Islam. Muhammad Ali, a prominent figure in the civil rights movement, was also a member of the Black Muslims.

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  • 8. 

    This militant organization was founded by Huey Newton and advocated the advancement of Black power by force. Newton is quoted as saying "we make the statement, quoting from Chairman Mao, that Political Power comes through the barrel of a gun".

    • A.

      Black Muslims

    • B.

      Black Panthers

    • C.

      Black Power

    • D.

      Nation of Islam

    Correct Answer
    B. Black Panthers
    Explanation
    The correct answer is Black Panthers. The Black Panthers was a militant organization founded by Huey Newton that advocated for the advancement of Black power through force. Huey Newton's quote about political power coming through the barrel of a gun reflects the Black Panthers' belief in armed self-defense and their willingness to use force to achieve their goals.

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  • 9. 

    A movement that came out of the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s and called for independent movement of political and social institutions for black people.

    • A.

      Nation of Islam.

    • B.

      Black Muslims.

    • C.

      Black Panthers.

    • D.

      Black Power.

    Correct Answer
    D. Black Power.
    Explanation
    Black Power is the correct answer because it accurately describes the movement that emerged from the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. Black Power called for the establishment of independent political and social institutions for black people, emphasizing self-determination and self-defense. The Nation of Islam and Black Muslims were religious organizations that also advocated for black empowerment but were not specifically associated with the broader Black Power movement. The Black Panthers, on the other hand, were a revolutionary socialist organization that aligned with the principles of Black Power and sought to combat racial oppression through militant means.

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  • 10. 

    Omar Bradley led the liberation of:

    • A.

      Poland, in WWII.

    • B.

      Black women held in underground Southern slavery rings.

    • C.

      France, in WWII.

    • D.

      Belgium, in WWI.

    Correct Answer
    C. France, in WWII.
    Explanation
    During World War II, Omar Bradley played a significant role in leading the liberation of France. As a senior American military leader, Bradley commanded the First United States Army during the D-Day invasion and subsequent operations in Normandy. He played a crucial part in the successful liberation of France from German occupation, contributing to the overall Allied victory in Europe.

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  • 11. 

    Louis Brandeis was a Supreme Court Justice from 1916 to 1939. He believed that economic and social fact ("reality") had to take precedence over legal theory.

    • A.

      True

    • B.

      False

    Correct Answer
    A. True
    Explanation
    Louis Brandeis, a Supreme Court Justice from 1916 to 1939, prioritized economic and social reality over legal theory. This means that he believed that the practical implications and consequences of a situation should be considered more important than abstract legal principles. Therefore, the statement that he believed economic and social reality had to take precedence over legal theory is true.

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  • 12. 

    William Jennings Bryan delivered this speech, which advocated the coinage of silver, and railed against the Gold Standard.

    • A.

      Gold Death

    • B.

      Cross of Gold

    • C.

      The New Silver

    • D.

      Silver Liberty

    Correct Answer
    B. Cross of Gold
    Explanation
    The correct answer is "Cross of Gold." This answer is correct because the question states that William Jennings Bryan delivered a speech advocating the coinage of silver and criticizing the Gold Standard. The phrase "Cross of Gold" is a famous quote from Bryan's speech, where he passionately argued against the Gold Standard and called for the use of silver as a monetary standard.

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  • 13. 

    This 20th-century explorer is known for flying over the North Pole.

    • A.

      Richard Byrd

    • B.

      Charles Dyk

    • C.

      William Dunning

    • D.

      Louis Brandeis

    Correct Answer
    A. Richard Byrd
    Explanation
    Richard Byrd is known for flying over the North Pole during the 20th century. He was an American naval officer and explorer who made several expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic regions. In 1926, Byrd successfully flew over the North Pole in a Ford Trimotor aircraft, becoming one of the first people to do so. His achievement brought him international recognition and made him a prominent figure in exploration history.

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  • 14. 

    You might be a carpetbagger if you:

    • A.

      Are a transient salesperson.

    • B.

      Are a nonresident politician.

    • C.

      Are known for concealing facts about your past while running for office.

    • D.

      Seek to spread capitalism mixed with the Protestant faith.

    Correct Answer
    B. Are a nonresident politician.
    Explanation
    The term "carpetbagger" refers to a nonresident politician. During the Reconstruction era after the American Civil War, many politicians from the North moved to the South to take advantage of the political and economic opportunities. These individuals were often seen as opportunistic and were accused of exploiting the South for personal gain. The term "carpetbagger" became synonymous with these politicians who were perceived as outsiders meddling in Southern affairs. Therefore, being a nonresident politician is a characteristic that aligns with being a carpetbagger.

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  • 15. 

    Chief Joseph was leader of the ____________________, who led his people on a futile attempt to escape to Canada, rather than settle on a reservation.

    • A.

      Cherokee.

    • B.

      Apache.

    • C.

      Nez Perce.

    • D.

      Iraquois.

    Correct Answer
    C. Nez Perce.
    Explanation
    Chief Joseph was the leader of the Nez Perce tribe. He is known for leading his people in a futile attempt to escape to Canada instead of settling on a reservation. The Nez Perce were a Native American tribe who inhabited the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. Despite their efforts to peacefully coexist with white settlers, they were forced onto a reservation by the US government. Chief Joseph's resistance and determination to protect his people's way of life made him a prominent figure in Native American history.

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  • 16. 

    Reacting to complaints from westerners that Chinese immigrants were driving down wages and threatening "racial purity", the federal government passed this act:

    • A.

      Alien and Sedition Act

    • B.

      California Resolution

    • C.

      South Eastern Asia Immigration Act

    • D.

      Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882

    Correct Answer
    D. Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882
    Explanation
    The correct answer is the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. This act was passed in response to complaints from westerners about Chinese immigrants. It aimed to restrict Chinese immigration to the United States, as they were accused of driving down wages and threatening "racial purity." The act prohibited the immigration of Chinese laborers for a period of 10 years and denied Chinese immigrants the right to become naturalized citizens. This act was the first significant law restricting immigration into the United States based on race and nationality.

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  • 17. 

    This act gave the Federal Government authority to act against racial segregation in public areas.

    • A.

      Civil Rights Act of 1964

    • B.

      Jim Crow Act of 1966

    • C.

      Dred Scott Decision of the Supreme Court

    • D.

      Common Rights Act of 1967

    Correct Answer
    A. Civil Rights Act of 1964
    Explanation
    The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the correct answer because it granted the Federal Government the power to address and combat racial segregation in public spaces. This legislation was a significant milestone in the civil rights movement as it aimed to end discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. The act prohibited segregation in schools, workplaces, and public facilities, and also established the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to enforce its provisions.

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  • 18. 

    This man was the only President in the history of the United States to serve nonconsecutive terms in the Executive Office.

    • A.

      Millard Fillmore

    • B.

      Theodore Roosevelt

    • C.

      Grover Cleveland

    • D.

      James Polk

    Correct Answer
    C. Grover Cleveland
    Explanation
    Grover Cleveland is the correct answer because he is the only President in the history of the United States to serve nonconsecutive terms in the Executive Office. He first served as the 22nd President from 1885 to 1889, then lost the election in 1888, and later served as the 24th President from 1893 to 1897. No other President has had such a nonconsecutive term in office.

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  • 19. 

    This group was a leading organization in the Civil Rights Movement and launched the Freedom Riders.

    • A.

      NAACP

    • B.

      Congress on Racial Equality (CORE)

    • C.

      Women's Congress on Equal Pay

    • D.

      National Organization of Women (NOW)

    Correct Answer
    B. Congress on Racial Equality (CORE)
    Explanation
    The correct answer is Congress on Racial Equality (CORE). CORE was a leading organization in the Civil Rights Movement and played a crucial role in launching the Freedom Riders campaign. The Freedom Riders were a group of activists who rode interstate buses into the segregated southern United States to challenge the non-enforcement of Supreme Court decisions that ruled segregation on public buses unconstitutional. CORE's involvement in organizing and coordinating these efforts made them a significant force in the fight for civil rights during this period.

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  • 20. 

    This Native American leader was at the Battle of Little Bighorn, leading the Sioux against General Custer.

    • A.

      Chief Joseph

    • B.

      Crazy Horse

    • C.

      Geronimo

    • D.

      Sitting Bull

    Correct Answer
    B. Crazy Horse
    Explanation
    Crazy Horse was a Native American leader who played a significant role in the Battle of Little Bighorn. He led the Sioux tribe in their resistance against General Custer and his troops. Crazy Horse's strategic skills and bravery were instrumental in the Sioux's victory over Custer's forces.

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  • 21. 

    This mayor of Chicago led the city during the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, and is credited with contributing to the election of JFK in 1960. He was the head of a very powerful political machine.

    • A.

      John Dooley

    • B.

      Al Capone

    • C.

      Al Davis

    • D.

      Richard Daley

    Correct Answer
    D. Richard Daley
    Explanation
    Richard Daley is the correct answer because he was the mayor of Chicago during the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. He is known for his strong political machine and his influence in the Democratic Party. Daley was able to mobilize the political organization to support John F. Kennedy's election in 1960, which contributed to Kennedy's victory.

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  • 22. 

    The act that attempted to make Native Americans more "civilized" and less transient by giving them the land was known as the 

    • A.

      Dawes Act of 1887.

    • B.

      American Involvement Act of 1866.

    • C.

      The Fair Deal.

    • D.

      The American Readjustment Act.

    Correct Answer
    A. Dawes Act of 1887.
    Explanation
    The correct answer is the Dawes Act of 1887. This act was an attempt to assimilate Native Americans into mainstream American society by allotting them individual plots of land. The goal was to encourage Native Americans to adopt the agricultural practices of European settlers and abandon their traditional nomadic lifestyle. However, the Dawes Act ultimately resulted in the loss of millions of acres of Native American land and the erosion of tribal sovereignty.

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  • 23. 

    This socialist was five-time the candidate of the American Socialist Party in the 19th/20th century. He was jailed for his criticism of WWI.

    • A.

      Clarence Darrow

    • B.

      John Dewey

    • C.

      William Douglas

    • D.

      Eugene Debs

    Correct Answer
    D. Eugene Debs
    Explanation
    Eugene Debs was a prominent socialist in the late 19th and early 20th century. He ran as the candidate of the American Socialist Party five times, advocating for workers' rights and social justice. Debs was known for his outspoken criticism of World War I, which led to his imprisonment under the Espionage Act. His commitment to socialist ideals and his willingness to speak out against war made him a significant figure in American history.

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  • 24. 

    This man was a Supreme Court Justice from 1939 to 1975 and advocated judicial activism in defense of the liberal social policy.

    • A.

      Richard Daley

    • B.

      Eugene Debs

    • C.

      William O. Douglas

    • D.

      John Dewey

    Correct Answer
    C. William O. Douglas
    Explanation
    William O. Douglas is the correct answer because he served as a Supreme Court Justice from 1939 to 1975. During his tenure, Douglas was known for advocating judicial activism, which refers to judges actively interpreting the law and making decisions that promote social change. He was particularly supportive of liberal social policies, further emphasizing his role as a defender of progressive ideals within the court.

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