UPI's 2Oth Century Top Stories

UPI reporters have been on the ground for all of the major events of the past 97 years, covering the news with balance, analysis and insight. We have now delved into our archives to build a collection of over 1,600 of the most significant stories, woven together by the key themes of the century.

UPI's 20th Century Top Stories gives you 20th century history as it was made, written in clear, bright prose that brings those stories to life. We give you the people, issues and events that shaped the time – which in turn shaped today.

UPI differentiated itself during the century by introducing big-name interviews and developing the feature story as an important part of the daily news report. UPI stories were written for the ear as much as for the eye and the Top Stories collection reflects this distinctive style.

Many of the past century's best-known journalists, including Walter Cronkite, Howard K. Smith, Harrison Salisbury, and Helen Thomas, worked for UPI and are represented in this collection of top stories.

The UPI archive project was developed based on a review of the Standards of Learning for social studies programs across the United States. It is tailored for students developing research projects and teachers creating course materials.

Packed with emotion and drama, UPI's 20th Century Top Stories provides the context, nuance and human interest of major news stories, written for the ear as much as for the eye.


Key themes of the collection include:


  • Politics and policies of U.S. presidents and international leaders
  • Business trends and influential economic policies
  • Technical breakthroughs that shaped economy and culture
  • Buildup, progression and aftermath of the wars of the 20th century
  • Immigration and labor
  • Civil rights struggles and accomplishments
  • Key contributions of women
  • Evolution of the war on terrorism

UPI's 20th Century Top Stories portrays history with the emotion and drama of the past century. It also includes lively and insightful analysis and commentaries from writers who made lasting marks in journalism.

John F. Kennedy, Jr. salutes the passing casket containing his father, President John F. Kennedy.