200+ History Essay Topics

200+ History Essay Topics

History essays are among the most controversial assignments that students can get. Some say that historical studies definitely are the most exciting challenges they’ve ever experienced, while others consider them to be an absolute boredom quintessence.

Still, when you receive a paper assignment on history, there is nothing you can do but complete it. But first, if your professor is fine with offering their students some freedom of choice, you’ve got to come up with a topic. And that’s the point where most students get stuck.

Here below, you’ll find some relevant tips and suitable history research paper topics for college students. Additionally, these themes will fit your essays, term papers, and other academic assignments. The only difference between those paper types can be a topic detail level when writing a descriptive essay, a research paper, or even a thesis. The higher paper requirements mean more in-depth research, and that’s it.  

History Essay Topics: Nothing to Be Afraid

Considering the history topics to write about, one may feel it to be too challenging to find something they might cover well in an essay or research paper. However, that’s a delusion. You will be able to come up with a topic worth the top grade, no matter which of them you’re going to choose. Why so?

It’s because they all are relevant for college studies. Like, when you are free to choose any topic touching on the history subject, the entire civilizational development timeline is at your disposal. You just need to think about which period and aspect you like the most, and that’s it. It’s clever to choose among the times, places, and subtopics you personally admire. 

That’s how you get yourself involved in an essay writing process and, consequently, receive better chances to craft a paper worth the highest grade.

Now, let’s review over two hundred history topics divided into several categories according to places, timelines, and events. Choose one of those available on the list as it is given, or use them all as inspiration sources and references to generate something original. 

US History Essay Topics

We will start with the essay theme concepts on US history. In fact, all of them can easily be used as American history research paper topics as well. Here are the prompts:

  1. Native American culture: a historical retrospective
  2. First colonists in North America
  3. The impact of Columbus’ expeditions on the history of different civilizations
  4. Civilizational gaps: why Native Americans fell back before European conquests
  5. The rise and fall of the Aztec Empire
  6. The precursors of American nation’s arising
  7. The evolution and death of the American dream
  8. The US war on independence: key battles and events
  9. The Civil War in the United States: reasons and outcomes
  10. Racial segregation in the US: history, impact, results
  11. The history of American military interventions
  12. Leading war chiefs throughout the US history
  13. Braxton Bragg: a biography of the Confederate Army general
  14. Life and death of Abraham Lincoln
  15. The Founding Fathers: the historical scale of personalities
  16. John Kennedy’s impact on the US politics
  17. Reasons of the American political dominance in the 1990s
  18. Main failures of the US foreign policy
  19. The United States in the Great War
  20. US casualties in World War 2
  21. The US national idea throughout history
  22. Watergate scandal explained
  23. Biography of George Washington
  24. The Declaration of Independence: historical meaning
  25. The battle of Normandy: US contribution to defeating the axis in WW 2
  26. The US in the Cold War: achievements and failures
  27. The US Army special forces history
  28. The greatest military defeats of the United States
  29. Reasons and results of the Vietnam War
  30. The 9/11 and war on terror: a direct response to terrorist attacks
  31. The Bay of Pigs invasion: reasons of the US military failure
  32. Operation Desert Storm: substantial analysis of American success
  33. The Great Depression: most severe economic crisis of the US explained
  34. BLM movement and its historical basis
  35. Reasons of Confederate defeat in the Civil War
  36. Cuban Missile Crisis: the Cold War apotheosis
  37. US vs. USSR space conquest: the history of the competition
  38. The development of the American Space Program
  39. Moon landing: the historical meaning of Neil Armstrong’s step
  40. The US nuclear weapons: invention, tests, and use

History Research Paper Topics

The choice of historical research paper topics is almost unlimited. However, to come up with good history research paper topics, you need to think a lot of topics over. Here are 40 of them to choose from:

  1. History of Great Britain
  2. The development of Christianity
  3. Muslim countries: the period of Arabic domination in science
  4. Christian terrorism: main cases throughout history
  5. The First Crusade: conditions, reasons, and results
  6. The golden age of piracy: how and why it happened
  7. The historical analysis of Russian civil war
  8. The rise and fall of the Soviet Union: a historical retrospective
  9. History of post-soviet countries
  10. Mexico: main historical events
  11. Greatest battles in human history
  12. Operation Bagration: the process and outcomes of Soviet victory
  13. Blitzkrieg failure: why the axis forces didn’t win the Battle of Moscow
  14. World War 2: the impact of the USSR on the beginning of the conflict
  15. The Battle of Kursk: the last offensive of Nazi Germany
  16. The Eastern front casualties during World War 2
  17. The French Foreign Legion: appearance and history
  18. The Russian invasion in Syria: how the Russian Army changed the conflict tides
  19. History of Poland from ancient times till our days
  20. Germany during the interwar period: reasons for the economic and patriotic rise
  21. The political situation before World War 1
  22. The history of China
  23. Indian religious history
  24. The Roman Empire: achievements of Octavian Augustus’s reign
  25. Soviet invasion in Afghanistan: cause and effect research
  26. Main French Army victories
  27. Medieval Europe: War of Roses explained
  28. Vikings: historical impact of Norman tribes
  29. Mongolian Empire: reasons of successful conquests
  30. Canada: historical development description
  31. Spanish conquistadors and their wars against Native American tribes
  32. The British colonization of North America
  33. Witch hunts: Catholic church’s impact
  34. Women in World War II
  35. Holocaust and the world’s reaction to it
  36. Atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and how the strikes changed the world
  37. History of democracy
  38. Arabic terrorism and main radical Muslim organizations   
  39. Modern world and cultural changes
  40. Globalization: pros and cons

Ancient History Research Paper Ideas

If you think of coming up with something original, a research paper devoted to ancient history topics is exactly what you need. Check 40 more theme concepts to choose from:

  1. Ancient Egypt symbolism
  2. Paleolithic cults and religions
  3. Pagan beliefs of ancient Europeans
  4. Ancient Greece: how its cultural achievements determined humanity’s civilizational development
  5. Ancient Greek myths
  6. History of Palestine
  7. Ancient Egypt religion: death, immortality, rebirth
  8. Iron age: social role distribution in ancient societies
  9. Prehistoric Europe and the role of women in historical processes
  10. Mesolithic period: reasons and threads of civilizational progress
  11. Ancient astronomy research
  12. Sumerian civilization: traditions, culture, achievements
  13. Ancient Greek legacy in modern European cultures
  14. The impact of the Roman Empire on human history
  15. Primal tribes: beliefs, social organization, power
  16. Ancient China as the most scientifically advanced region of its time
  17. Philosophy development in Ancient Greece
  18. Mesopotamian art history
  19. Battle of Thermopylae: the result of the second Persian invasion for Greece
  20. Most famous ancient last stand battles
  21. Ancient military fleet development history
  22. Advantages of Nomad civilizations
  23. Ancient Vikings: weapon and armor technologies
  24. Alexander the Great: biography and achievements
  25. Jesus Christ as the historical personality
  26. The fall of the Roman Empire as the end of ancient history
  27. Atilla the Hun: the barbarian destroyer of Rome
  28. The role of iron weapons in ancient war victories: advantages before copper and bronze
  29. Biography of Cleopatra
  30. The great library of Alexandria: how knowledge of generations burnt
  31. Wonders of the ancient world: Pharos of Alexandria
  32. Ancient Rome architecture
  33. Prehistoric civilizations of Africa
  34. Ancient India: culture and religion
  35. Pre-Muslim Arabia: polytheistic beliefs
  36. Ancient martial arts: Greek wrestling
  37. Most effective military tactics before the fall of Rome: evolution of ancient warfare
  38. Cultural development difference: ancient civilizations of Greece and china
  39. Roman legions: solutions leading to ultimate warfare dominance
  40. Craftsmanship in Mesopotamia

World History Topics

The fourth section of our list of 200 history topics is devoted to the entire world. Here, you will see 40 more themes not limited by periods, locations, or cultures. See that the choice of potential topics for your history essay is almost endless:

  1. Historical conflicts in modern Russia
  2. Somalia: the chronology of one of the world’s poorest countries
  3. Slavery: how it looked like in different parts of the world throughout history
  4. The impact of globalization on historical memory
  5. The role of history in modern international conflicts
  6. Historical bias: how it affects the development of nations
  7. Strengths and advantages of communist ideology: historical analysis
  8. The Ottoman expansion and the fall of Byzantium
  9. The review of Russian-Turkish wars
  10. Australia before colonization
  11. Decolonization of Africa
  12. Role of women and children in Soviet victory over Nazis
  13. Battle of Berlin: the last days of World War II in Europe
  14. Kwantung army defeat in 1945: impact on the surrender of Japan
  15. Kamikaze warriors as the historical phenomenon
  16. Napoleon invasion: how Russians defeated the Great Army
  17. Superpowers before the USA and USSR
  18. Cultural leaders of medieval Europe
  19. Historical portrait of Catherine the Great
  20. Winston Churchill’s impact on WW2 results
  21. “Iron Curtain” speech as the Cold War trigger
  22. The final countdown: cases when the world stood one step away from the nuclear war
  23. Development of artillery
  24. Firearms: how gunpowder changed warfare forever
  25. Russian-Georgian war of 2008: reasons and outcomes
  26. The Crimean crisis of 2014: world reaction and historic consequences
  27. Overview of conflicts between England and France
  28. German defeat in World War I: how it caused the Third Reich to appear
  29. Lauri Allan Torni: the portrait of the dedicated anti-communist
  30. The Eastern Front of World War II: Red Army tactics and strategies
  31. Royal dynasties of Europe
  32. Northern Crusades: goals, achievements, and defeats
  33. The battle on the ice and the impact of its results on the medieval history
  34. Sweden of the early 18th century as the European superpower
  35. World’s first civilizations
  36. A bipolar world definition
  37. Roman Empire engineering
  38. Cold War espionage: main victories and defeats of the USA and USSR
  39. The Babylonian Empire rise
  40. The history of Olympic games

History Argumentative Essay Topics

Argumentative extended essay topics on history are challenging but exciting when you pick them right. Check the 40 options below and decide which one you would like to explore the most.

  1. Was the Soviet invasion in Afghanistan a failed military campaign?
  2. Martin Luther King’s main historical impact
  3. What were the reasons for the Third Reich to lose World War II?
  4. Could communism really become an alternative to capitalism?
  5. Can the Holocaust be justified?
  6. The impact of the Borgia family on Italian Renaissance
  7. The cause of the American revolution: what was it?
  8. Could the Cold War be avoided?
  9. What was the positive effect of the USSR vs. USA competition?
  10. What are the key elements of civilization?
  11. Age of discovery: what are its main outcomes?
  12. Can nationalism be for good?
  13. The French Revolution: main results
  14. Was the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact a success or failure for the USSR?
  15. Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear strikes: were they necessary to end World War II?
  16. How would you describe US history in one word? Why?
  17. Main failures of the US foreign policy during the Cold War
  18. Reasons for the growth of China’s power in the 21st century
  19. Could the Confederate states win the Civil War? Why?
  20. What were the reasons for the German defeat in the Battle of Stalingrad?
  21. What would you call the best quality of Winston Churchill and why?
  22. Who to blame for World War II to begin?
  23. Major history lessons throughout the 20th century
  24. Should people know world history?
  25. Islamic terrorism: how to counter it?
  26. The historical meaning of the Internet
  27. Main achievements of Charles XII of Sweden
  28. Is Vladimir Putin a progressive politician?
  29. Reasons for the industrial revolution in Britain
  30. Is it right to call France the World War II winner?
  31. Are BLM protests constructive?
  32. What were the historical reasons for racism in America?
  33. Was World War I inevitable?
  34. Do you agree that appeasement was an incorrect diplomatic solution during the interwar?
  35. Why did Americans win the War on Independence?
  36. What was the American dream? Is it still relevant?
  37. Historical reasons for police violence in the USA
  38. What’s the key cultural difference between East and West?
  39. Can war become a civilizational progress catalyst?
  40. Are nuclear weapons unnecessary?
  41. Did the USA win the space race?


You’ve got over 200 good history essay topics above. Most probably, you’ve found the one that suits you the most. If you didn’t, just use all the suggestions above as references, and do your best to come up with something original.

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