During the early years of the 18th century, Annapolis, Maryland was a political, economic and cultural powerhouse, and the Maryland State House, built in 1772, is the first and only state house to serve as the nation's capitol. VisitAnnapolis.org
From baseball to higher education and everything in between, Boston's rich history is evident everywhere you look. Incorporated as a town in 1630, Boston saw the founding of the first college in North America - Harvard University - in 1630, just 16 years after the pilgrims first arrived. In 1773, the infamous Boston Tea Party was the first act of open rebellion against British colonial rule.
Founded by English colonists in 1670, Charleston was one of the continent's most prosperous and influential cities by the mid-18th century, thanks to its production of rice, indigo and cotton on large, slave-worked plantations. This prosperity would continue until Civil War fighting largely devastated the Antebellum city.
Home to three founding fathers who would later become U.S. Presidents, Charlottesville, Virginia was formed in 1762, named after Princess Charlotte. The historic city's most famous resident, Thomas Jefferson, made his home at beautiful Monticello, which he designed.
Incorporated as a city in 1837, Chicago played a pivotal role in the trade and transportation history of the country. The Illinois & Michigan Canal, completed in 1848, created a vital link between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River, and despite the devastating fire of 1871, the city would go on to become the center of rail transport in the nation.
In the summer of 1858, a group of prospectors from Georgia moved into Colorado Territory and struck gold at the base of the Rocky Mountains, causing an influx of fortune-seekers from around the country. One man, William H. Larimer, saw his fortune in land instead of gold, and began laying out a settlement named Denver.
Historians believe that present-day Honolulu was settled by Polynesian immigrants as early as the 11th century, but the city's most important historical moment wouldn't come for several centuries, when the attack on Pearl Harbor thrust the nation into World War II.
In 1804, explorers Lewis and Clark came to what is now the Kansas City area, and French fur traders soon followed, setting up log cabin trading posts along the Missouri River. The town of Kansas City was formed in 1838 and was formally incorporated in 1850.
In 1819, two small settlements of cotton plantations merged together to form the town of Montgomery, Alabama During the Civil War, Montgomery was home of the First White House of the Confederacy, where Jefferson Davis and his family lived, but its most important historical contributions came during the Civil Rights movement
in 1718, French colonist Sieur de Bienville established a port city named La Nouvelle Orleans near where the Mississippi River met the Gulf of Mexico. Today, New Orleans tourism is fueled by the historical feel of its charming neighborhoods.
New York City was first founded as a Dutch trading colony by Henry Hudson in 1609. Shortly after the U.S. declared independence, New York served as the capital, and by 1790, it was the largest city in the nation. It remains a treasure trove of architectural gems.
It's impossible to study U.S. history without exploring the history of Philadelphia, the birthplace of American democracy. Independence Hall, in the heart of what is now Philly's Independence National Historic Park, witnessed the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and the formation of the U.S. Constitution 11 years later.
San Antonio was founded in 1718, making it the earliest civilian settlement in present-day Texas and the site of numerous historic Spanish missions, one of which played an important role in the fight for Texas independence - the beautiful Alamo in the middle of Downtown San Antonio.
While the native Ohlone people had lived in the area of present-day San Francisco as early as 10,000 years ago, it wasn't until 1775 that Spaniards arrived and began establishing missions. Things really picked up in 1849, when James Marshall found gold dust, and San Francisco became the gateway to the fabled riches of El Dorado.
Pueblo settlements in and around Santa Fe date back to the 10th century, but the city itself wasn't established until 1607. It became the capital of the Spanish province of Santa Fe de Nuevo Mexico in 1610, making it the oldest state capital in the country.
Recorded history of Savannah, Georgia begins in 1733, the year when General James Oglethorpe and the good ship Anne made landfall along the Savannah River front and the colony of Georgia was established. Considered America's first planned city, Savannah still has 22 of its original 24 public squares.
Nicknamed "the Old City," St. Augustine was the first European settlement in the U.S., discovered in 1565 some 55 years before the pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock. History is in evidence throughout the city, from the preserved walls of 17th century Castillo de San Marcos to the beautiful Flagler College.
French fur traders established St. Louis as a trading post in 1764 for its strategic spot near the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. Local legend says that on the day of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, when St. Louis became part of the United States, the city flew beneath three flags in 24 hours: French, Spanish and U.S.
Touring Washington D.C. is like taking a journey through the history of an entire nation. Since its founding in 1790, the country's capital has witnessed countless historical events, including the assassination of a president; an invasion during the War of 1812; Martin Luther King, Jr.'s speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial; and Vietnam War protests in the National Mall.
From 1699 to 1780, Williamsburg was the political and cultural hub of the largest and most influential American colony, Virginia. Not only does Williamsburg have a storied history, it's managed to bring that history to life right before visitors' eyes in Colonial Williamsburg, a re-creation of what the influential Virginia colony might have been like on the brink of the Revolutionary War.