Results for - Debunking myths about American History (Part 1 of 2)

1,651 voters participated in this survey
When it comes to history, the stories we learn in history books are generally factual and accurate. But that's not always the case. History has been written and rewritten throughout the years. American history is rife with half-truths, embellishments, and outright myths. Many of these myths are taught to us in our earliest years, cementing their place in our minds and textbooks. Even with a few witnesses that were watching a situation at the same time, we get different versions. When a story is being told many times it starts to have variations from the original story. Do you think your history classes were accurate enough, based on fact, not myths?

1. When it comes to history, the stories we learn in history books are generally factual and accurate. But that's not always the case. History has been written and rewritten throughout the years. American history is rife with half-truths, embellishments, and outright myths. Many of these myths are taught to us in our earliest years, cementing their place in our minds and textbooks. Even with a few witnesses that were watching a situation at the same time, we get different versions. When a story is being told many times it starts to have variations from the original story. Do you think your history classes were accurate enough, based on fact, not myths?

Yes, they were 100% facts
7%
108 votes
There were facts and partial truths, or partial views of what could have been the truth back then
29%
484 votes
Most of what is taught at school is facts, but there are some details that change depending on the author.
23%
381 votes
Many of the absolutely true facts I´ve learned as a kid were not reflecting what really happened
17%
282 votes
I don´t care about history.
21%
349 votes
Other (please specify)
3%
47 votes
Let's check some common myths. Here goes the first one: The myth indicates the Wild West was murderously violent, as cowboys, vigilantes, sheriffs and Native Americans rustled for land and respect on the frontier. The truth seems to be that though the idea of dueling cowboys and revolver-toting criminals in the plains has been popular since the gold rush, these stories were usually anecdotic and greatly exaggerated - more about building legend than reporting fact. Bank robberies took place only an estimated 12 times total on the frontier from 1859 to 1900, and murder was just as uncommon: the average number of frontier town murders was 1.5 per year. The fabled shootout at the OK Corral had a body count of three. Guns of the time were highly inaccurate, and settlers were more interested in cooperation than consternation. It seems that the criminals of today's world would make Billy the Kid run for the hills. What do you think?

2. Let's check some common myths. Here goes the first one: The myth indicates the Wild West was murderously violent, as cowboys, vigilantes, sheriffs and Native Americans rustled for land and respect on the frontier. The truth seems to be that though the idea of dueling cowboys and revolver-toting criminals in the plains has been popular since the gold rush, these stories were usually anecdotic and greatly exaggerated - more about building legend than reporting fact. Bank robberies took place only an estimated 12 times total on the frontier from 1859 to 1900, and murder was just as uncommon: the average number of frontier town murders was 1.5 per year. The fabled shootout at the OK Corral had a body count of three. Guns of the time were highly inaccurate, and settlers were more interested in cooperation than consternation. It seems that the criminals of today's world would make Billy the Kid run for the hills. What do you think?

The Wild West was a daily shootout
10%
157 votes
The Wild West was not a daily shootout
40%
659 votes
I don´t know
49%
812 votes
Other (please specify)
1%
23 votes
This one will be a bit more controversial. The myth says that American might brought about the end of the Third Reich and World War II. The truth seems to be that Hollywood films, comic books and history classes like to paint America as the savior of Europe during World War II, but, like it or not, that title should probably belong to the Soviet Union. Despite a non-aggression pact, Hitler began an invasion of the USSR in 1941 and over 80% of Germany's casualties, along with massive amounts of war supplies and materials, took place on this front. Meanwhile, the U.S. and the U.K. argued over and delayed the opening of a second front until June of 1944. By then, the brutal eastern assault had essentially broken the back of the Axis powers. The added pressure of the western front hastened the demise of the Nazis, but it was by no means the deciding factor. What do you think?

3. This one will be a bit more controversial. The myth says that American might brought about the end of the Third Reich and World War II. The truth seems to be that Hollywood films, comic books and history classes like to paint America as the savior of Europe during World War II, but, like it or not, that title should probably belong to the Soviet Union. Despite a non-aggression pact, Hitler began an invasion of the USSR in 1941 and over 80% of Germany's casualties, along with massive amounts of war supplies and materials, took place on this front. Meanwhile, the U.S. and the U.K. argued over and delayed the opening of a second front until June of 1944. By then, the brutal eastern assault had essentially broken the back of the Axis powers. The added pressure of the western front hastened the demise of the Nazis, but it was by no means the deciding factor. What do you think?

The US was responsible for winning World War II in Europe
19%
308 votes
The US was not responsible for winning World War II in Europe
22%
364 votes
I don´t know
56%
926 votes
Other (please specify)
3%
53 votes
The myth says the severely under-matched Texans stationed at the Alamo in 1836 died fighting for their rights. The truth seems to be that the Texans were not fighting for freedom, but to maintain their slave-trade. In 1830, a new Mexican edict officially outlawed slavery and U.S. immigration in Texas. The 30,000 Texans living in the area (compared to only several thousand Mexicans) were outraged, leading to a revolt to make Texas an independent nation. General Santa Anna led the victory against the undermanned and understocked Alamo mission, which became a rallying cry for the rest of the Texan army. When Santa Anna was forced to surrender in April 1836, the Republic of Texas was born. Texas would then enter the U.S. as a slave state. What do you think?

4. The myth says the severely under-matched Texans stationed at the Alamo in 1836 died fighting for their rights. The truth seems to be that the Texans were not fighting for freedom, but to maintain their slave-trade. In 1830, a new Mexican edict officially outlawed slavery and U.S. immigration in Texas. The 30,000 Texans living in the area (compared to only several thousand Mexicans) were outraged, leading to a revolt to make Texas an independent nation. General Santa Anna led the victory against the undermanned and understocked Alamo mission, which became a rallying cry for the rest of the Texan army. When Santa Anna was forced to surrender in April 1836, the Republic of Texas was born. Texas would then enter the U.S. as a slave state. What do you think?

Texans died at the Alamo in the name of freedom
19%
315 votes
Texans did not die at the Alamo in the name of freedom
17%
282 votes
I don´t know
62%
1,028 votes
Other (please specify)
2%
26 votes
10/29/2015 Living 1651 39 By: LBP

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By: LBP