Cities all over the United States are rich with history. From New York to California and Michigan to Alabama, American cities have contributed substantially to US history. Below is a list six historically significant American cities that are great places to visit.


6. San Antonio, Texas

Originally settled by Spanish missionaries and explorers, this major Texan city contains The Alamo, a famous site in Texas’s war for independence from Mexico. After the complete annihilation of those defending the mission, the battle served as a source of inspiration for Texan revolutionaries, who later won their independence. The United States annexed Texas in 1845, which was a major cause of the Mexican-American War. Outcomes of the war led to massive territorial gains in the American West including present-day California, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado. This expansion can trace its roots back to the city of San Antonio.

5. Washington, DC

The capital of the United States is an historic American city for obvious reasons. It is not only the center of the US government, but it also serves as a memorial to great leaders and to the brave men and women who died for our freedoms. Besides that, important events from Martin Luther King Jr.’s march to the tragic attack on the Pentagon on September 11th have occurred in the federal district.

4. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia is a major city today just as it was in the United States’ early days. It hosted the First and Second Continental Congress, it was the city where the Declaration of Independence was signed, it hosted the Constitutional Convention, and even served as the nation’s temporary capital while Washington was under construction.

3.  Cincinnati, Ohio

Often overlooked, Cincinnati was the first boomtown in the US and the first truly American city. After the Revolutionary War, large numbers of veterans founded the city. Since then, waves of German, Irish, and other immigrants have flooded the city. It was the first major city that was founded in a country free from British rule and was in the top ten cities by population for decades in the nation’s early years. The city also played a significant role during the Civil War, where just across the river was a slave-owning state. Today Cincinnati contains the largest intact historic district in the country, consisting of hundreds of Italianate-style buildings from the 19th century.

2. Boston, Massachusetts

One of the nation’s oldest and largest cities, Boston played a major role in the Revolutionary War, and is one of the nation’s largest ports. The Boston Massacre and the Boston Tea Party were major events that led to the declaration of war against Britain. Since then, it has remained historically significant as the city grew rapidly with waves of immigrants from all over the world.

1. New York City, New York

The largest city in the country, and one of the largest in the world, New York is the quintessential American city. Serving as a major destination for immigrants, the city has the historic landmarks of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, and today is one of the most diverse cities in the world. The city is also the financial center of the world, containing the New York Stock Exchange (which can trace its origins to 1792). During the Revolutionary War, the largest battle (Battle of Long Island) was fought in the city, and during the Civil War, the Draft Riots of 1863 broke out.