No longer the territory of slightly crusty, definitely dusty professors or interminably boring high school teachers, history is actually an endlessly fascinating array of facts. It allows us to look into the past, to help define the future. So, with that in mind, we thought it was the perfect fodder for a fun quiz, which is why we’ve pulled together 100 of the best history trivia questions and answers!
Gather together your friends, family or even perhaps your colleagues for a virtual (or live and in person) pub quiz, and see how much they know about the key events of the years gone by. For this quiz, we’ve focused quite a bit on history from the Americas, with a few round of world trivia thrown in for good measure.
Ready to get started? Let’s delve into the history (and record) books… 📚
Early History of the USA Trivia Questions
Land of the free and home of the brave, the USA might not be the ‘oldest’ country in the world but it sure has some interesting beginnings. To kick off this history trivia takedown, let’s dive right into the early days of the American dream.
1. Which ship dropped anchor near the tip of Cape Cod on November 21 1620 after a ten week voyage from the Old World?
2. Before setting sail for America, the pilgrims had been living in a colony in which European country after leaving England in 1608?
3. What name, taken from the port in Devon, England from where they had set sail, was given to the colony founded in Massachusetts in 1620 by the pilgrims?
4. Which daughter of Chief Powhatan was the first Native American to be honoured on a U.S. postage stamp?
5. By what name is Tisquantum, a key early liaison figure between the Pilgrims and the Native Americans, more commonly known?
6. Commemorated on the national flag, how many colonies originally declared independence in 1776?
7. Sacagawea was a key figure in aiding which two leaders of an 1803-1806 expedition?
8. Which state was acquired from France for $15,000,000 in 1803?
9. Who was the fourth President of the U.S.A. from 1809-1817?
10. What was the name of the first political party in the USA., which, under Alexander Hamilton dominated national government from 1791-1801?
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Early History of the USA Trivia Answers
- The Mayflower
- Lewis and Clark
- James Madison
- The Federalist Party
Did you know? The Pilgrims considered the Church of England beyond redemption and began leaving in 1608. However, they found Holland too liberal and pilgrim William Bradfield noting that their children had been “drawn away by evil examples into extravagance and dangerous courses”.
Presidents of the United States Trivia Questions
Back in 1789, the USA enacted the Constitution and the ‘most powerful job in the world’, the office of the President of the US was born. There have been some real historic characters that have sat in the Oval Office, with this round dedicated to trivia around this renowned role.
1. Name either of the two Presidents who signed the Declaration of Independence.
2. Who was the eighth President of the United States and the first President to be born a US citizen, rather than a British subject?
3. Who was the second US President to be assassinated whilst in office, on September 19 1881?
4. Who is the only US President in history to serve two non-consecutive terms in office?
5. About which President was Walt Whitman’s poem Oh Captain, My Captain written?
6. Which two Presidents of the United States both died on Independence Day 1826, exactly 50 years after the declaration of independence?
7. Along with Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln, who is the fourth President carved into Mount Rushmore?
8. Name two Presidents who have held the position at a younger age than Barack Obama.
9. Who are the oldest three Presidents to win an election?
10. Along with Trump and Clinton, who, in 1868, is the only other President to have been impeached?
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Presidents of the United States Trivia Answers
- John Adams / Thomas Jefferson (George Washington was in New York with his troops in July 1776)
- Martin van Buren
- James Garfield
- Grover Cleveland
- Abraham Lincoln
- John Adams and Thomas Jefferson
- Theodore Roosevelt
- John F. Kennedy / Theodore Roosevelt / Ulysses S. Grant / Bill Clinton
- Joe Biden, Donald Trump and Ronald Reagan
- Andrew Johnson
American Civil War Trivia Questions and Answers
Still sticking with trivia from the US of A, it’s time to turn your contestants’ attention to the most divisive conflict in the country, the Civil War. With millions injured and hundreds of thousands dead it was undoubtedly one of the most momentous (and saddest) milestones in the country’s history so worth seeing how much they know about this chapter in the American history story.
1. The troops of which state was the first to secede from the Union and fired the first shots of the war?
2. How many states made up the confederacy?
3. Which city in Virginia was the capital of the Confederate States?
4. Which battle was the deadliest of the war, resulting in 51,000 casualties?
5. In what year did the Civil War end?
6. On which side did the Creek, Choctaw and Cherokee tribes fight in the Civil War?
7. Along with Delaware, West Virginia and Maryland, name one of the other two slave states that remained part of the Union during the Civil War?
8. Whose horse was called Traveller?
9. Who was the President of the Confederacy from 1861 to 1865?
10. Several weeks after General Lee had surrendered to Ulysses S Grant, to which Major General did General Johnston surrender the Army of Tennessee?
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American Civil War Trivia Answers
- South Carolina
- The Confederacy
- Missouri and Kentucky
- Robert E Lee
- Jefferson Davis
- William T. Sherman
Twentieth Century American History Quiz Questions and Answers
From the industrial growth of the early turn of the century to progressive reforms including the Civil Rights movement spearheaded by Martin Luther King Jr, the 20th century was one of the most critical in the USA’s long history, and definitely worth exploring in a round of trivia questions! Let’s see how much your participants know about this 100 year period:
1. Who was US President at the turn of the Twentieth Century?
2. What was banned by the eighteenth amendment?
3. Which worldwide intergovernmental institution was founded by Woodrow Wilson in 1920?
4. Which US President died in office after only two years and was posthumously the subject of the Teapot Dome bribery scandal?
5. About which US President was it joked that he was “silent in five languages”?
6. What was the common name given to President Roosevelt’s economic plan launched in 1933 to revive the nation’s prosperity?
7. How many presidential elections did Franklyn D. Roosevelt win?
8. What significant event in World War Two occurred on Oahu Island on December 7 1941?
9. Who was President at the end of World War Two and ordered the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?
10. Officially the European Recovery Plan, the 1948 American initiative for giving aid to Europe was more commonly called what name, after the then Secretary of State?
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Early Twentieth Century American History Quiz Answers
- William McKinley
- Alcohol (The manufacture, sale or transportation of intoxicating liquors)
- The League of Nations
- Warren G. Harding
- Calvin Coolidge
- The New Deal
- The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor
- Harry S. Truman
- The Marshall Plan
The sound of silence? Famously a man of few words, Coolidge was nicknamed “Silent Cal”. Upon his death in 1933, Dorothy Parker reportedly remarked, “How can they tell?”
Recent American History Trivia Questions
It’s a quiz of two halves and, to end this US-focused half on a high, its time to bring it more up to date. Yup, it’s all about the more recent history in the United States of America, and the landmark happenings from 2001 onwards!
1. What opened in Anaheim, California on July 17 1955?
2. Which agency began operating on October 1 1958?
3. Which period of extreme tension lasted just over a month in late 1962?
4. The Edmund Pettus Bridge, which Civil Rights Protestors marched over in 1965, leads out of which Alabama city?
5. Who did Jack Ruby assassinate in 1963?
6. Famously, where was Michael Collins on July 21 1969?
7. Who was the only post-war President to never win an election?
8. Operation Cyclone was the codename for the CIA Operation that provided billions of dollars of weapons to jihadists in which country in the 1980s?
9. Which third party candidate won 18.9% of the popular vote in the 1992 Presidential Elections?
10. What happened to Deepwater Horizon in April 2010?
Want more from the 21st century? Try the 2000’s movie quiz
Recent American History Trivia Answers
- The Cuban Missile Crisis
- Lee Harvey Oswald
- Orbiting the Moon (he piloted the Command Module whilst Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon).
- Gerald Ford (Lyndon Johnson and Harry Truman were both appointed unelected but won a subsequent election).
- Ross Perot
- It exploded, leaking millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.
Did you know? At one point, Perot polled 39%, well ahead of Bush and Clinton. His share of the vote made him the most successful third party candidate since Theodore Roosevelt in 1912.
Latin American History Trivia Questions and Answers
From Panama to Paraguay, Colombia to Costa Rica, Latin America is a region made up of many nations, all with their own unique history to explore. But, if you only have one trivia round to dedicate to these incredible countries, then we suggest this one, with ten trivia facts about Latin America.
1. Machu Picchu, discovered in the early twentieth century, is a lost city of which civilization.
2. In what year did Christopher Columbus reach the islands of Cuba and Hispaniola on his first voyage?
3. La Malinche was an interpreter and intermediary who aided Hernán Cortés is the conquest of which pre-Hispanic civilization?
4. Known as El Libertador (The Liberator), which figurehead of the independence movement across Spanish America in the early nineteenth century gave his name to the currency of Venezuela as well as the name of an Andean country?
5. Toussaint Louverture was a key figure in the slave revolution in which country at the turn of the nineteenth century?
6. Emiliano Zapata was the leader of the peasant revolt in the state of Morelos and a key figure in the 1910-1920 revolution of which country?
7. One of the most iconic photos of all time, who is the subject of “Guerrillero Heroico”, taken by Alberto Korda in March 1960 at a memorial for the victims of the La Coubre explosion?
8. Which futuristic, centrally-located city was founded as the new capital by President Juscelino Kubitschek in 1960?
9. What was the given name of the hugely popular first wife of Juan Perón, leader of Argentina?
10. In which country was Salvador Allende ousted by Augusto Pinochet in the coup of September 11th 1973?
Enjoying the geography lesson? What about this capital cities quiz instead?
Latin American History Trivia Answers
- Simón Bolívar
- Che Guevara
- Eva (Evita)
Canadian History Trivia Questions
The largest country in the Western hemisphere and boasting the longest coastline in the world (at over 200, 000 km / 125, 000 miles), it’s a crying shame to only do one quiz round about Canada. But, in the interests of brevity, we’ve pulled together ten cracking questions about the Great White North.
1. Which river, that flows from the Great lakes to the North Atlantic Ocean, did French explore Jacques Cartier sail up, when he discovered Canada in 1534?
2. Which Scotsman was the first Prime Minister of Canada?
3. Name two of the four original provinces of Canada, when the nation was founded in 1867.
4. What was composed by Callixa Lavallé in 1880 with lyrics by Adolphe Basile-Routier that weren’t translated into English until 1906?
5. The oldest professional sports trophy in North America, what was first awarded in 1893?
6. Which people escaped to Canada via the metaphorical “Underground Railroad”?
7. Who is Canada’s longest serving Prime Minister, holding office on and off for more than 21 years between 1921 and 1948?
8. What job did Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s father have when Justin was born in 1971?
9. Which iconic building in Toronto was completed in 1976?
10. Nunavut, Canada’s tenth and newest province, comprises the land and islands at which extreme of the country?
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Canadian History Trivia Answers
- St. Lawrence
- John MacDonald
- Ontario / Quebec / Nova Scotia / New Brunswick
- The Stanley Cup
- Mackenzie King
- Prime Minister
- The CN Tower
Did you know? Nunavut was declared the tenth province of Canada in 1999. It is the largest of all the provinces and extends as far as the North Pole.
Ancient History Trivia Questions and Answers
After sticking in the Americas for 70% of this trivia quiz, let’s widen the view and look at history across the entire globe, really going back in time to the ancient eras. Check out how much your contestants known about ancient history in this round:
1. Which mathematician supposedly had a Eureka moment in the bath?
2. How many of the seven ancient wonders of the world have been lost?
3. Julius Caesar supposedly proclaimed “alia iacta est” (the die is cast) when he crossed which river?
4. The first documented instance of which competition took place in 776 B.C?
5. From around 3,000 B.C., Memphis was the first capital of which ancient civilization?
6. Which state of Ancient Greece fought against Athens in the Peloponnesian War?
7. Meaning “The Senate and the People of Rome” in translation, what four letter abbreviation did Roman legions bear on their standard?
8. Whose horse was called Bucephalus?
9. Which civilization had its capital at Tenochtitlan?
10. Which city was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79?
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Ancient History Trivia Answers
- 6 (only the Pyramid at Giza remains)
- The Rubicon
- The Olympics
- S.P.Q.R. (Senatus Populus Que Romanus)
- Alexander the Great
- Aztec (this isn’t really Ancient History at all – the Aztecs were contempories of Henry VIII)
World History Trivia Questions and Answers
What are some of the biggest milestones in our planet’s past (and beyond)? Who are the most notable people and personalities? Let’s look at just a few of the biggest questions in world history in this penultimate round!
1. Who was the fascist leader of Italy that took them into World War II?
2. Which European dictator ruled his country from the end of the Civil War in 1939 until his death in 1975?
3. Muhammad Ali Jinnah was the first Governor General of which nation, when it gained its independence in 1947?
4. Cosmonaut Alexey Leonov was the first person to do what?
5. Before being indicted to America and sentenced to 40 years in prison on corruption charges, Manuel Noriega was the ruler of which country in the 1980s?
6. Why was the 2nd September 1666 a bad day for Thomas Farriner’s bakery on Pudding Lane in London?
7. To where did Roald Amundson lead a successful expedition in 1911?
8. Which conflict began in 1950 and ended in 1953, although the two sides are still technically at war, having never reached a peace agreement?
9. In which year was the Berlin Wall torn down, signalling the beginning of reunification?
10. Which country was known as East Pakistan until independence in 1971?
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World History Trivia Answers
- Benito Mussolini
- General Franco (Spain)
- A space walk
- It caught fire, starting the Great Fire of London
- The South Pole
- The Korean War
World History for Kids Quiz Questions and Answers
For the final round of this epic trivia guide, let’s get the entire family involved, with a few questions thrown in for the younger history buffs. Here are ten history trivia questions and answers specifically geared towards the young ‘uns!
1. Which King of England had six wives?
2. Which civilization were famous for chariot racing and gladiator fights?
3. Built around 2500 B.C., in which country would you find the Great Pyramid of Giza?
4. Which President gave his name to the capital city of the U.S.A.?
5. Along with Italy and Japan, which country was the third (and principal) nation of the Axis in WWII?
6. Wanli and Hongxi were two of the emperors of the Ming dynasty in which country?
7. Between 1965 and 1975, the USA sent over half a million soldiers to fight a war in which Asian country?
8. The country of Czechoslovakia split into two new nations in 1992. Name either.
9. Which large island nation did Captain Cook discover in April 1770?
10. What was the name of the machine used to carry out beheadings during the French Revolution?
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World History for Kids Quiz Answers
- Henry VIII
- The Romans
- George Washington
- Czech Republic / Slovakia
So, how did you and your wannabe history aficionados do? Did they miss a milestone or did they post some record-breaking ranks? Regardless of performance, we hope everyone enjoyed this history trivia trial.
And, if we missed anything off this quiz or you think we’ve got a fundamental fact wrong, we’d love it if you got in touch. Just drop us a line or write a quick note in the comments below!
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