Teenage pregnancy is one of the most incendiary public issues of our day. Yet after all the investigation and government effort, what is really known about the problem of adolescent pregnancy and how to deal with it? What is the role of the social scientist and historian in a public issue of this kind? This study sets the question within its historical framework and discusses a host of current issues and policy considerations. The author begins by examining adolescent sexuality and childbearing in early America and evaluating whether there has been an 'epidemic' of adolescent pregnancy in American history.