The "Portrait of America" speaks of the period of President Andrew Johnson and how the period of "Reconstruction" brought with it a lot of positive things but since it was not feasible enough it had failed. It speaks of the political corruption that prevailed in addition to the slave trade that was carried on. The author Heilbroner speaks of the 'Gilded Age' and about the great Andrew Carnegie was responsible for the evolution of industrial power. On the other hand Page Smith explains how the barons amassed their wealth by employing slaves to work for them. He also tells us about the period of industrialized and the human toll paid by the United States.
Edmund Morris takes us into the 'Progressive Era' where he speaks of how conduct and personal qualities shape great historical figures. Author Sean Dennis enumerates on the NAACP movement of the negroes and how they suffered to gain their rights. Paul Fussell gives us a soul- stirring account of the Great War (1914 - 1918) and all its conflicts. Watkins speaks of the worst Depression that took place in history, while authors Maddox and Fletcher speak of the dropping of the bombs n Hiroshima and Nagasaki and its consequences.
Stephen B. Oates, Gives us a vivid account of Martin Luther King's philosophy of nonviolence in addition to his human flaws against the backdrop of the civil rights movement.