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Every decade of the twentieth century had its own personality. This personality was formed by both the people and the events that dominated it. Learn more about the century by exploring its decades.
  1. 1900s
  2. 1910s
  3. 1920s
  4. 1930s
  5. 1940s
  1. 1950s
  2. 1960s
  3. 1970s
  4. 1980s
  5. 1990s

1900s

Still from the 1903 film, The Great Train Robbery.

Events, people, places, and other important happenings during the first years of the 20th century.

1910s

A decade dominated by the first total war, World War I.

1920s

The Coffinette for the Viscera of Tutankhamun on display.

From Flappers to Prohibition, the 1920s were a decade full of major cultural and social change.

1930s

Picture of a mother with her two children during the Great Depression.

As the Nazis gained power in Germany, the Great Depression ravaged the rest of the world.

1940s

Adolf Hitler poses with a group of SS members soon after his appointment as Chancellor.

While countries from around the world sent troops to Europe to fight World War II, the Nazis continued their blitzkrieg tactics to take over Europe, country by country, while also murdering millions of Jews and Gypsies.

1950s

Picture of Fidel Castro speaking during a rally.

As families settle down with their TV dinners in front of their new color televisions, the Cold War starts to heat up and the Civil Rights Movements gets underway.

1960s

Peace symbol drawn in sand.

Although hippies tried to counter the violence, millions of Americans and Vietnamese died during the Vietnamese War.

1970s

President Richard Nixon at his desk.

As disco, M*A*S*H, and computers emerge on the scene, the American public is shocked with the discovery of the Watergate Scandal.

1980s

Mt. St. Helens Erupting

At the same time that perestroika and glasnost began to drastically change the Cold War, major natural and man-made disasters occured around the world.

1990s

A picture of a computer monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

The Cold War comes to a quick and decisive end while the increasing popularity of the Internet begins to open up worldwide communications.

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