By any standard, the United States is the most violent nation in the industrialized world. To find comparable levels of interpersonal violence, one must look to nations in the midst of civil war. Most observers of modern American violence do not consider the historical roots of current levels of violence, preferring to criticize American liberalism, permissive child-rearing practices, and excessive greed and individualism as the sources of the problem. This collection of original essays examines the role of violence in America’s past, exploring its history and development, from slave patrols in the Colonial South to gun ownership in the twentieth century. Contributors examine both individual acts, such as domestic violence, murder, dueling, frontier vigilantism, and rape, and group and state-led acts such as lynchings, slave uprisings, rifle clubs, legal sanctions of heterosexual aggression, and invasive medical experiments on women’s bodies. Contributors include Jeff Adler, Bruce Baird, Robert Dykstra, Lee Chambers-Schiller, Philip J. Cook, Laura Edwards, Uche Egemonye, Nicole Etcheson, Evan Haefeli, Sally Hadden, Paula Hinton, Arthur L. Kellermann, Laura McCall, Kate Nickerson, Mary Odem, Craig Pascoe, John C. Pettegrew, Junius P. Rodriguez, and Andrea Tone, Christopher Waldrep.