Only 1 in 10 Americans know what happened on these historical dates. Do you?

About this Quiz

Our history is dotted by events that shaped the world into what it is today. Some of those events changed mankind for the better and others remind us that humans can be just as destructive as they are inventive. But do you know your history as well as you think you do? Only 1 in 10 people know the answers to our questions. Come find out if you’re one of them in this quiz.

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1. Which nuclear event took place on April 26th, 1986?

Byelikova Oksana /
  1. Bhopal gas leak
  2. Nagasaki bombing
  3. Chernobyl disaster
  4. Tennessee coal ash spill
On April 26th, 1986, a nuclear reactor at the Chernobyl Power Plant exploded and resulted in what is still known today as the world’s worst nuclear accident.
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2. In which of the following years was the Russian Revolution started?

Everett Historical /
  1. 1917
  2. 1967
  3. 1999
  4. 1966
The Russian Revolution, which began in 1917, signaled the end of the Romanov dynasty. Vladimir Lenin seized power and Czar Nicholas abdicated the throne.
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3. In what year was the League of Nations established?

Martin Grandjean /
  1. 1820
  2. 1620
  3. 1920
  4. 1720
The League of Nations was formed in 1920 after the first World War - it was meant to provide a way for countries to solve their disputes without having to go to war.
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4. On what day did the First World War start?

Everett Historical /
  1. July 28th, 1964
  2. July 28th, 1814
  3. July 28th, 1914
  4. July 28th, 1864
Historians say that there was unrest long before the war began, but it all came to a head with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria. The day of his death marked the day of the start of the war.
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5. Why was there a reason for celebration in South Africa on February 11th, 1990?

Madele /
  1. They gained their independence
  2. Nelson Mandela was released from prison
  3. They won the war against America
  4. They got their own currency
In February of 1990, Nelson Mandela was released after serving 27 years in prison. He was arrested for leaving the country illegally in 1962 (sentenced to five years) but was put on trial again in 1964 and charged with sabotage.
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6. In what year was Adolf Hitler made chancellor of Germany?

Everett Historical /
  1. 1953
  2. 1913
  3. 1933
  4. 1973
Before Adolf Hitler started his reign of terror across Germany and Poland, he was named Chancellor of Germany by President Paul von Hindenburg in 1933.
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7. When did the Wright Brothers first fly their airplane?

Everett Historical /
  1. December 17th, 1933
  2. December 17th, 1989
  3. December 17th, 1903
  4. December 17th, 1959
On December 17th, 1903, brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright, with their first powered plane, made four short flights; it was known as the world’s first successful airplane.
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8. On which of the following dates did WWII end?

Everett Historical /
  1. October 2nd, 1949
  2. August 2nd, 1940
  3. November 2nd, 1933
  4. September 2nd, 1945
World War Two was a result of many different issues, including Hitler’s rise in power. It ended on September 2nd, 1945.
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9. In what year was the first African American president of the USA inaugurated?

Andrew F. Kazmierski /
  1. 2004
  2. 2020
  3. 2017
  4. 2009
Barack Obama, the first and only African American to become the president of the United States, was inaugurated on January 20th 2009. It was said to be one of the biggest inauguration attendances.
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10. Which important decision was ratified (in the USA) on August 18th, 1920?

Everett Historical /
  1. The law ending slavery
  2. Women’s right to vote
  3. The bill ending discrimination
  4. That everyone was subject to the law
Women’s right to vote in the United States was passed by Congress in June of 1919. It was ratified (given formal consent, making it valid) over a year later on August 18th, 1920.
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11. On what day was Hiroshima bombed?

Everett Historical /
  1. December 1st, 1912
  2. January 3rd, 1986
  3. July 23rd, 1962
  4. August 6th, 1945
On August 6th, 1945, an American bomber released the world’s first atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. Over 70,000 people died right away; the rest suffered from radiation exposure before passing.
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12. In what month and year did the Titanic sink?

Everett Historical /
  1. June 1952
  2. April 1912
  3. July 1972
  4. May 1932
When the Titanic sank, over 1,500 people died after the ship hit an iceberg and sank on the night/early morning of April 14th/15th, 1912.
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13. In which years did the Holocaust death camps start and end?

Vladiczech /
  1. 1747 to 1823
  2. 1986 to 1991
  3. 1534 to 1688
  4. 1941 to 1945
The Nazis rose to power around 1933, which is when historians say the Holocaust began. The horrifying death camps, however, started almost ten years later in 1941 at camp Belzec.
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14. During which decade did the Black Death peak in Europe?

Everett Historical /
  1. 1954
  2. 2010
  3. 1340
  4. 1000
Also known as The Great Plague, the Black Death was a period of excessive disease which resulted in the death of around 50 million people in Europe. It started in the 1340s.
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15. On what day did The Civil War begin in the USA?

Everett Historical /
  1. April 12th, 1811
  2. April 12th, 1961
  3. April 12th, 1861
  4. April 12th, 1911
The real reason for the cause of the Civil War is still up for debate. The vast majority of scholars say that it was because some states wanted to abolish slavery, while others (mostly in the South), wanted to preserve it.
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16. Which act, that outlawed discrimination based on sex, race, religion, etc. was signed by President Johnson on July 2nd, 1964?

Everett Historical /
  1. Fugitive Slave Act
  2. Confiscation Act
  3. Civil Rights Act
  4. Embargo Act
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 signaled the end of segregation in public places, as well as with employment. It was first proposed by President Kennedy, but was signed by his successor, President Johnson.
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17. What day goes down in history as the day man first landed on the moon?

Castleski /
  1. July 20th, 1999
  2. July 20th, 1939
  3. July 20th, 1909
  4. July 20th, 1969
Neil Armstrong was the first man on the moon. Piloted by Buzz Aldrin, the two achieved their world-changing mission on July 20th, 1969.
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18. Which civil rights activist was arrested on December 1st, 1955, for an incident on a bus?

Associated Press /
  1. Angela Davis
  2. Rosa Parks
  3. Simone de Beauvoir
  4. Eleanor Roosevelt
On December 1st, 1955, Rosa Parks boarded a bus that would come to change her life. She was arrested for not giving up her seat to a white passenger and would soon be known as one of the most important female activists in history.
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19. When was the Panama Canal first opened?

Mark Dozier /
  1. May 4th, 2004
  2. August 15th, 1914
  3. March 27th, 1854
  4. November 16th, 1804
The Panama Canal is a manmade waterway located in Panama, which connects the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. It was first used on August 15th, 1914.
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20. Around what year did the Incans begin building Machu Picchu?

Pyty /
  1. 1900
  2. 1985
  3. 1766
  4. 1450
The Incan citadel known as Machu Picchu was built around 1450 in southern Peru. It was abandoned because of the Spanish conquest of Peru.
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21. On what day was President Kennedy (JFK) assassinated?

Victor Hugo King /
  1. December 25th, 1963
  2. November 30th, 1963
  3. December 7th, 1963
  4. November 22nd, 1963
On November 22nd, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was shot while riding in a motorcade in Dallas, Texas. The man charged with shooting him was a former marine named Lee Harvey Oswald.
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22. In what month and year did the Berlin Wall fall?

Alberto Loyo /
  1. September 9th, 1961
  2. November 9th, 1989
  3. October 9th, 1979
  4. December 9th, 1971
The Berlin Wall was built in 1961 to separate East and West Berlin. It was torn down in November of 1989 by the very people it was meant to keep in.
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23. In what year did Alexander Fleming win the Nobel Prize for discovering penicillin?

Adrignola /
  1. 1985
  2. 1945
  3. 2005
  4. 1876
Contrary to popular belief, Alexander Fleming was not the only man who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology/Medicine in 1945 for discovering penicillin. Ernst Chain and Sir Howard Florey were also recipients.
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24. Which infamous protest took place on December 16th, 1773?

Morphart Creation /
  1. Solidarity Day March
  2. Million Woman March
  3. The Boston Tea Party
  4. Anti-Nuclear March
The Boston Tea Party was a protest against the British East India company being able to sell Chinese tea in American colonies and having the Americans pay taxes on it. Protestors boarded ships and dumped chests of tea into the Boston Harbor.
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25. Which state fell on December 26th, 1991?

  1. Mexico
  2. Germany
  3. Soviet Union
  4. Japan
The disintegration of the USSR began in the mid-80s due to the unrest growing in the nations within it and ended in December of 1991. The Soviet flag was lowered in Moscow for the last time on Christmas evening.
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26. On what day was “The Virgin Queen” of England and Ireland born?

Lorna Roberts /
  1. November 7th, 1303
  2. September 7th, 1533
  3. March 7th, 1954
  4. June 7th, 1908
Elizabeth The First was given the name “The Virgin Queen” because she never married and thus had no heir. She was the daughter of Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII and was born on September 7th 1533.
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27. When did Martin Luther King Jr. give his famous “I Have A Dream” speech?

New York World-Telegram and the Sun staff photographer: DeMarsico, Dick, photographer /
  1. February 20th, 1947
  2. November 9th, 1975
  3. May 1st, 1924
  4. August 28th, 1963
Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I Have A Dream” speech was given during the March on Washington in 1963 on August 28th. To this day, it is still one of the most famous speeches in human history.
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28. When did the Reformation start and end?

anonymous - Dorotheum, Public Domain /
  1. 1914-1919
  2. 1899-1909
  3. 1517-1648
  4. 1252-1345
The Reformation, which took place from 1517-1648, was a time when Roman Catholicism was challenged by Protestants, because of the corruption associated with the church. The Pope’s authority was challenged by the likes of Martin Luther, Henry VIII and John Calvin.
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29. Which continent was discovered in 1770?

robert mcgillivray /
  1. Australia
  2. Flimberg
  3. Africa
  4. Washington
Australia was discovered way before 1770, but it wasn’t until then that Captain James Cook mapped the eastern coast and claimed it in the name of Great Britain.
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30. Which world-changing invention was created in 1990?

NicoElNino /
  1. Telephone
  2. The Internet
  3. Penicillin
  4. The wheel
The internet began taking form, so to speak, in 1983. It became what we know it to be today in 1990 when Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web.
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31. Which operation, ordered by then-president Barack Obama, took place on May 2nd, 2011?

Hamid Mir /
  1. Osama bin Laden’s death
  2. Hawaii officially becoming a state
  3. The surrender or Fidel Castro
  4. The end of the war in Afghanistan
On May 2nd, 2011, US Navy SEALS found and executed Osama bin Laden, leader of the Al-Qaeda terrorist group and the man responsible for causing the September 11th attacks.
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32. Which event caused President Nixon to retire on August 9th, 1974?

Sean Pavone/
  1. Red Dawn
  2. Watergate
  3. Desert Storm
  4. Bay of Pigs
The Watergate scandal was a huge political mess that came to light after their was an attempt to rob the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters. It was revealed that then-president Nixon and some high-ranking members of his party were linked to this robbery and were trying to cover it up.
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33. Which revolutionary invention was created in 1440?

Everett Historical /
  1. The telephone
  2. The printing press
  3. The microwave
  4. The refrigerator
Although models of the printing press were created before Johannes Gutenberg’s, his invention, made in 1440, was the one that started the printing revolution.
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34. Which treaty was signed on June 28th, 1919 and signaled the end of World War I?

Everett Historical /
  1. Treaty of Greenville
  2. Treaty of Ghent
  3. Treaty of Versailles
  4. Treaty of Westphalia
Historians believe that WWI ended the moment this document was signed. It was signed exactly five years after Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated - the event which was said to start the war in the first place.
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35. What did Charles Lindbergh's complete on May 21st, 1927?

Kamira /
  1. A transatlantic flight
  2. Creating man’s first computer
  3. Terrorizing the nation of Mexico
  4. Building NASA’s first spacecraft
On May 21st, 1927, Charles Lindbergh completed the world’s first solo transatlantic flight; he was only 25 years old when he finished the trip.
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36. Which groundbreaking event happened on October 4th, 1957?

Everett Historical /
  1. Sputnik was launched
  2. The internet was created
  3. WWII ended
  4. Queen Elizabeth was crowned
Sputnik was launched by the Soviet Union on October 4th, 1957. It is known as the world’s first satellite.
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37. When was President Bill Clinton impeached?

Bob McNeely, The White House /
  1. February 2nd, 2008
  2. August 5th, 1409
  3. May 28th, 1990
  4. December 19th, 1998
President Clinton was impeached in December of 1998 for lying under oath. He was the second president in the history of the United States to be impeached.
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38. Which very important document was signed on July 2nd, 1776?

  1. The Federalist Papers
  2. The Gettysburg Address
  3. The 14th Amendment
  4. The Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence is a document which represented the United States making a stance to choose their own government for the very first time. It was written by Thomas Jefferson and signed by 13 colonies which formed the United States.
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39. In the rhyme about Christopher Columbus, what year did it say he “sailed the ocean blue?”

Valentina Photo /
  1. 1462
  2. 1442
  3. 1492
  4. 1482
The rhyme says, “In fourteen hundred ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.” It was created to help children (and adults) remember Christopher Columbus’ adventures.
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40. On what day was President Lincoln assassinated?

Everett Historical /
  1. May 9th, 1860
  2. March 4th, 1847
  3. April 14th, 1865
  4. February 12th, 1809
While it is true that Abraham Lincoln died on April 15th, 1865 - he was actually shot by John Wilkes Booth on the 14th while watching a play. He passed away the next day.
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41. What location was attacked on December 7th, 1941?

Everett Historical /
  1. Alcatraz
  2. The White House
  3. Fort Knox
  4. Pearl Harbor
On December 7th, 1941, the Japanese Navy attacked Pearl Harbor, a United States naval base located in Honolulu, Hawaii.
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42. What was the exact date of the Twin Towers bombing?

Anthony Correia /
  1. September 11th, 2000
  2. September 11th, 1999
  3. September 11th, 2001
  4. September 11th, 1991
On September 11th, 2001, four planes were hijacked by the Al-Qaeda terrorist group to carry out attacks against the United States. Two of those planes were flown directly into New York’s Twin Towers, resulting in thousands of deaths.
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43. In what year was the Magna Carta signed?

Everett Historical /
  1. 34 BC
  2. 1115
  3. 1215
  4. 1893
Signed by King John of England in 1215, this was a document which stated that everyone, including the king himself, was subject to the law.
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44. What was the name of the airship disaster which took place in New Jersey on May 6th, 1937?

Everett Historical /
  1. Chernobyl disaster
  2. The Prohibition
  3. The Deepwater Horizon disaster
  4. Hindenburg disaster
The Hindenburg disaster refers to when the German airship, LZ 129 Hindenburg, caught on fire while attempting to dock at the Naval Air Station in New Jersey.
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45. Which country’s missile crisis began on October 16th, 1962?

Everett Historical /
  1. Germany
  2. Cuba
  3. Japan
  4. North Korea
The Cuban Missile Crisis, which began on October 16th, 1962, was the confrontation between the United States and Russia (who had set up missiles on the Caribbean island of Cuba); it lasted 12 days.
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46. Gandhi’s Salt March took place during March and April of what year?

Ankit M /
  1. 2019
  2. 1242
  3. 1930
  4. 1789
Gandhi’s Salt March took place in 1930 as a form of protest towards Great Britain ruling India. Gandhi himself, along with another nearly 60,000 people, were arrested.
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47. Which world changing trials ended on October 1st, 1946?

Work of the United States Government /
  1. The Rosenberg trials
  2. The Leopold and Loeb trial
  3. The Scopes trials
  4. The Nuremberg trials
The Nuremberg trials were a series of trials held to persecute those who played a part in the Nazi leadership during WWII. They started on November 20th 1945 and ended on October 1st 1946.
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48. What did Einstein announce in 1905?

Oleg Golovnev /
  1. Theory of Depression
  2. Theory of Relativity
  3. Theory of Mortal Sentiments
  4. Theory of Evolution
Einstein’s theory of relativity, announced in 1905, spoke of many things, including the laws of physics, as well as the speed of light. Ten years later, he included acceleration and published the theory of general relativity.
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49. The Great Depression lasted a decade. Approximately when did it start and when did it end?

Everett Historical /
  1. 1929-1939
  2. 1959-1969
  3. 1949-1959
  4. 1939-1949
One of the worst economic periods in history, the Great Depression started in 1929 when the stock market crashed and lasted until 1939.
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50. In what year did the Louisiana Purchase take place?

Jose Gil /
  1. 1603
  2. 1803
  3. 1703
  4. 1503
In 1803, the United States bought the territory known as ‘Louisiana’ from France - it was reportedly sold for $15 million.
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