Before Americans could have the Hula hoops or Twinkies that helped to define the postwar-era, there had to be a prodigious and reliable supply of crude oil. The best evidence of 20th century Americans’ overwhelming dependence on petroleum may be our complete neglect at providing it proper credit for enabling this standard of living. Even now, most of us barely get past a first-grade understanding of our dependence on oil. Oil does not just fuel our vehicles. Oil has changed our diet, our clothes, our neighborhoods, our jobs, our fun—in fact, everything about our society. “Oil for Living” provides some concepts for how we might add this story more accurately to the history of post-war America and the activities below will help you to extend these points in the classroom.
“Teaching the JAH” uses online tools to bridge the gap between the latest scholarly research in U.S. history and the practice of classroom teaching. JAH authors demonstrate how featured articles might be taught in a U.S. history survey course.
Terrorism and the American Experience
When the “Jungle” Met the Forest: Public Work, Civil Defense, and Prison Camps in Postwar California
“The Specter of Environmentalism”: Wilderness, Environmental Politics, and the Evolution of the New Right
—James Morton Turner
“Worth a Lot of Negro Votes”: Black Voters, Africa, and the 1960 Presidential Campaign
—James H. Meriwether
Reconfiguring the Old South: “Solving the Problem of Slavery,” 1787–1838
Houses Divided: Lincoln, Douglas, and the Political Landscape of 1858
—Allen C. Guelzo
The Army in the Marketplace: Recruiting an All-Volunteer Force