America: A Name's Origin
The name 'America' comes from Amerigo Vespucci, an Italian explorer. His voyages to the New World were documented in letters that became widely popular, leading cartographer Martin Waldseemüller to name the continent 'America' in his 1507 map.
Diverse Native American Cultures
Before European colonization, thousands of distinct Native American cultures thrived. The Haudenosaunee Confederacy, for example, had a democratic system that influenced the United States Constitution's framers.
America's Megafaunal Extinctions
Around 12,600 years ago, North America lost over 35 genera of large mammals, including mammoths, in a wave of extinctions possibly caused by human hunting and climate change.
Revolutionary War's Global Impact
The American Revolutionary War inspired global democratic movements. France's support for America drained its finances, contributing to the French Revolution and the spread of republicanism.
Invention of the Internet
The first workable prototype of the Internet came from the ARPANET, a network developed by the United States Department of Defense in the 1960s. This technology revolutionized global communication.
First Earth Photograph
In 1946, America captured the first photograph of Earth from space using a V-2 rocket. This perspective was pivotal for the environmental movement, showcasing our planet's fragility.
Unexpected National Mammal
The bison, America's national mammal, was once near extinction with fewer than 600 individuals. Conservation efforts have revived its population, symbolizing the nation's commitment to wildlife preservation.