Skip to Content
HomeAbout this siteHelpSearch this site The Library of Congress
America's Story from America's LibraryMeet Amazing AmericansJump Back in TimeExplore the StatesJoin America at PlaySee, Hear and Sing
Jump Back in Time Progressive Era (1890-1913)
President Coolidge Signs Tax Bill, 1926.
President Coolidge signs the tax bill on February 26, 1926

Enlarge this image
Tax Day
April 15, 1913

When the country was young, it struggled to raise funds from the 13 original states--$15 million from each state in 1779 and more in following years. The government collected the first income tax during the Civil War, but only temporarily. President Grover Cleveland tried to start up regular yearly income taxes in 1894, but the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional. For supporters of the income tax, that meant amending the Constitution, which the government finally did in 1913 with the 16th Amendment. From that point on, Congress could legally collect taxes on incomes.
Back page 2 of 3 Next

Library Of Congress | Legal Notices | Privacy | Site Map | Contact Us