I think it will be remembered as a period of recovering from the worst recession since the "Great Depression", the conclusion of the two longest wars America has ever been a part of, stock market records at all time high, gas dropping below $2 a gallon for much of the country, and of course the often dreaded Obamacare.
However it will be recorded that congress passed less legislation than any other congress in history. The nation has never seen political gridlock of this magnitude. If predictions are correct that Hilary Clinton will be our next president I can't imagine things changing all that much.
Whoever wins the office of president is the figurehead for their (political party's) agenda. Odds are half the voters voted against them and therefore you're always going to have people who are unhappy.
This period will be the first time where "key performance indicators" or the usual economic statistics will not matter as much as how people (felt) during this period.
I agree with junkseller that the 1970s for those old enough to remember Vietnam, double digit inflation, odd & even days at the gas pump, Watergate, and the Iran hostage crisis make 2008-2016 look like a cake walk. Some people will always have a "short term memory" when it comes to history. Even more recently 9/11 in 2001 is far worse than anything that has occurred recently.
Obama should thank his lucky stars it didn't happen on his watch! Where as Bush got re-elected afterwards it's doubtful Obama would have been given the same latitude. If it rains it's Obama's fault! He's responsible for every bad thing that happens in this country. Everything was "perfect" before he took office or so some would have us to believe.