Those are indeed areas of history that are covered quite exhaustively. We also tend to study (at least in my part of the country) the pioneer/homesteading days, starting just before the civil war and going on past the turn of the century. Of course, people like Daniel Boone and Lewis & Clark were exploring before then, bur the exodus didn't really start for a while.
Also, I spent most of a year of history class learning about Native Americans and the impact that European settlers had on them.
Also, starting very early, we take about a week each March and discuss the Holocaust. For example, I first watched a movie adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank at ten or eleven, and I had read the actual diary before that. (Most kids didn't.)
That's not to say we learned about World War II; I was fourteen before I found out who Winston Churchill was through an independent project. However, getting into high school, we did cover the World Wars, Prohibition, all that (though strangely we never got past about 1950), but none of that was beaten into our heads the same way as some of the subjects I listed above, which is what I think you're looking for.
I am only speaking from my own experiences, of course, but I hope it helps!