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Harmond United States History List AP

1. Columbian Exchange

The Colombian exchange was the introduction of plants, animals, and diseases from New World to Old and vice-versa. Examples from Old World to New: sugarcane, iron implements, cattle, horses, and smallpox. From New World to Old: corn, tobacco, potatoes, and syphilis. Significance- The Colombian exchange is the greatest legacy of Columbus' four voyages to the New World. Its consequences included the deaths of millions of American Indians due to foreign disease.

2. Sir Walter Raleigh

Raleigh attempted the first English settlement of North America in 1587 at Roanoke Island, in present-day North Carolina. This was the famous "lost colony of Roanoke." Significance- His colony failed, probably due to Indian attacks, but the English succeeded soon after in Jamestown (#4).

3. Robert LaSalle

La Salle claimed all the land with tributaries to the Mississippi River for France in 1682. Roughly, this is land from the Appalachian Mountains to the Rockies. He named the territory "Louisiana." Significance- Conflicts arose with England during the French and Indian War (#28) over the northeastern boundaries of this claim, around present-day Pittsburgh.

4. Jamestown, Virginia

Jamestown was funded by a joint-stock company of investors, with approval of King James I. Captain John Smith and Governor John Rolfe kept the colony running in difficult times. Tobacco growing was very successful, Rolfe having introduced a particularly resistant and rich hybrid from the Caribbean in 1612. It had the first representative assembly (House of Burgesses) and first Africans in America, both dating from 1619. Significance-First permanent English settlement in America (1607).

5. Plymouth Colony

A group of 102 English Separatists ("Pilgrims") sailed to Massachusetts in 1620 aboard the Mayflower. William Bradford was governor, who oversaw the first successful harvest and Thanksgiving. Later, Plymouth merged with the Massachusetts Bay Colony (#6). Significance-The Mayflower Compact, written by the group before disembarking ship, was an early form of self-rule in colonial government.

6. Massachusetts Bay Colony

About 1000 English Puritans with the Massachusetts Bay Company set out for America and founded Boston around 1630. Their leader, John Winthrop, referred to the colony as a shining "city on a hill" (biblical reference). The Salem Witch Trials occurred in the colony at the end of the 17th century. Significance-largest early colonial settlement.

7. Great Migration

Within ten years of settling Boston, nearly 35,000 people emigrated from England to the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Significance-This figure demonstrates just how popular a destination America was for many English, even early on.

8. Europeans' Treatment of American Indians

Conventional wisdom says the French generally treated natives the best, followed by the English, and then the Spanish. Significance-In the French and Indian War, most Indians took the side of the French.

9. Colonial Charters

Three types of charters were issued to the American colonies by England's king. A charter was a contract allowing the formation of a new colony. These included 1) Corporate, or Joint-Stock, Companies, such as Jamestown (before taken over by the King in 1624). Such colonies allowed middle-class Englishmen to pool their money together to invest in an overseas venture, 2) Royal, or Crown, Colonies, run directly by the King's government, such as New York and Connecticut, and 3) Proprietary, financed and run by individuals, such as Maryland and Pennsylvania. Significance-The thirteen colonies developed differently over time, partly because of the diverse ways they were run, and by who tended to populate them.

10. Toleration Act

Maryland was founded in 1634 by Lord Baltimore as a refuge for English Catholics. The colony's Toleration Act of 1649 granted religious freedom to all Christians, but death to those who did not accept the divinity of Christ. Significance-Although it only extended to Catholics, it was a step in the direction toward religious tolerance and civil rights in the colonies.

11. Bacon's Rebellion

In Virginia in 1676, farmer Nathaniel Bacon led a rebellion against the policies of Governor William Berkeley. The rebels wanted farmer-friendly economic policies and protection from Indians. The rebellion collapsed when Bacon died of dysentery. Significance-It showed sharp class differences that were developing in the colonies, and it was an early example of colonial resistance to British governance.

12. Indentured Servants

These people worked for landowners for free for 4 to 7 years in exchange for passage to America. At the end of their servitude, workers were often given land of their own. The first Africans in Jamestown (#4) were indentured servants, but by the 1660s slavery was norm there. Significance-Many early settlers in Virginia and Maryland got their start in America as indentured servants.

13. Anne Hutchinson

Hutchinson was a religious dissenter from the Massachusetts Bay Colony who led a group to Rhode Island following the example of an earlier dissenter, Roger Williams. Significance-This was an early example of American dissent from authority and an example of political and spiritual leadership from a woman-very unusual for the time.

14. Fundamental Orders of Connecticut

Thomas Hooker led yet another group out of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1636, this time to Connecticut. The colony's constitution, the Fundamental Orders, established elected representative government (1639). Significance-It was an early example of representative government and of dissention from unjust authority.

15. Halfway Covenant

By the 1660s New England churches began to lose influence, so they allowed members to take part in church services without a formal declaration of belief in Christ. Significance-This showed the influence of the Puritans was weakening over time in New England as people became more prosperous.

16. New England Confederation and Dominion of New England

In 1643 the Plymouth, Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, and New Haven colonies formed an alliance called the New England Confederation to defend themselves against Indian, French, and Dutch attacks. It lasted until 1684. In 1686, King James II created the Dominion of New England for similar reasons, but it was short-lived. Significance-These set precedents for colonial cooperation, a useful idea in the French and Indian War (#28) and Revolutionary War.

17. New York

The Netherlands (Holland) originally settled present-day New York, calling its colony "New Amsterdam." In 1664, England took over the colony and renamed it New York, but the Dutch settlers were treated with toleration. Significance- New York City became a leading colonial port and New York a popular area of settlement.

18. Holy Experiment

The Pennsylvania colony was established by a Quaker, William Penn. He provided religious toleration and a representative assembly. He considered these ideas a "holy experiment" and it worked. Pennsylvania became the most populous colony and Philadelphia the most populous city in America. Significance-Penn showed that getting along with others was a workable, popular, and profitable concept.

19. James Oglethorpe

Oglethorpe founded Georgia, the 13th of the 13 colonies, as a haven for the poor and oppressed. However, he banned drinking, gambling, and slavery, and the colony languished until the English government took over. Significance-Georgia was a buffer between Spanish Florida and the English Carolinas. This was the first of many attempts to establish a utopia society in America (#75).

20. Mercantilism

This European economic policy saw colonies as an important source of raw materials for the mother country's benefit, and little else. Colonies were supposed to buy finished goods from the mother country. Significance-This policy by the English government often angered the colonists, ultimately leading to the American Revolution.

21. Navigation Acts

These were English rules for colonial trade, made to promote mercantilism (#20). Trade of certain "enumerated goods" from the colonies was supposed to go only to England, like tobacco. Over time new Navigation Acts expanded the list to almost everything the colonies produced. This angered colonial merchants like John Hancock. Significance-Resentment built up in the colonies over restrictive trading regulations. Lots of smuggling to and from France and Holland occurred, which angered the English.

22. Triangular Trade

This refers to the general sea route across the Atlantic used to transport goods and slaves between the New World, Europe, and Africa, and slaves from America to Europe, manufactured goods from Europe to Africa to America. Significance-It shows the economic interdependence of three continents in colonial times.

23. Middle Passage

This was the route slave ships traveled across the Atlantic from Africa to the New World. Africans were often chained together and treated no better than animals. Over 90% of the Africans who survived the Middle Passage worked on Caribbean or South American plantations. Less than 10% went to North America. Significance-It shows how far New World plantation owners were willing to go for cheap labor and how inhumane the slave trade was.

24. Colonial Economic Trends

New England colonies (CT, RI, MA, NH, and VT) had small farms but excelled in shipbuilding, fishing, trading and producing rum. Middle colonies (NY, NJ, PA, and DE) produced wheat on larger farms and large port cities like New York and Philadelphia. Southern colonies (MD, VA, NC, SC, and GA) grew tobacco on large plantations and corn and rice on smaller farms. These colonies had the most slaves by far. The only city with a large population was Charleston, South Carolina. Significance-The environment-climate and soil-was a major factor in the different development of the colonies. People developed different attitudes about religion, government, and slavery, with enormous implications for the future decades.

25. The Great Awakening

A religious revival occurred all over the colonies beginning in the 1730s. Jonathan Edwards was one famous evangelist who preached with great zeal. Belonging to a particular denomination was now not as important as having a personal relationship with God. Significance-The Great Awakening had a unifying effect on Americans since it was something everyone experienced or at least knew about. It also changed Americans' views of religious and later, political, authority.

26. Benjamin Franklin

Franklin was America's first Renaissance man-someone active in many different fields. He was a writer, publisher, philanthropist, politician, scientist, inventor, U.S. ambassador to France, and editor of the Declaration of Independence. He published Poor Richard's Almanac, famous for its advice and witty sayings. Significance-As the first American famous in Europe, Franklin brought about a new level of respect for Americans in Europeans' eyes.

27. Zenger Libel Case

In 1735, New York publisher John Peter Zenger was put on trial for writing unpleasant things about the Colony's governor. The jury decided Zenger had written the truth so he was not punished. Significance-The case established a tradition-later to become law- in America that didn't exist in England: freedom of press.

Revolutionary War Era, 1754 to 1787


28. French and Indian War

The English and French fought over control of most of North America east of Mississippi River from1754 to 1763. France had a greater number of Indians on its side. The principal area dispute was the northern Ohio River valley, focusing on the French Fort Duquesne (Pittsburgh) George Washington gained a lot of military experience in this war. Significance-The British won, gaining Canada all the land east of the Mississippi River.

29. Albany Plan of Union

During the French and Indian War, delegates from 7 colonies met to consider Benjamin Franklin (#26) plan to unite for a common defense. The plan wasn't approved because arguments over sharing powers arose among the colonies. Significance-Like the New England Confederation (#16), the Albany Plan of Union created a template for future colonial unity during the American Revolution.

30. Salutary Neglect

For much of the colonial era England chose to look the other way while Americans ignored the Navigation Acts (#21). This unofficial policy was called salutary neglect. Significance-After the French and Indian War, England needed money to protect the colonies and pay war debts, so it began to enforce its long-ignored laws-this angered many Americans.

31. Proclamation of 1763

To protect the colonies form Indian attacks, England ruled that no Americans could move west of the Appalachian Mountains and that trading with Indians was forbidden. Significance-This new law infuriated many Americans and thousands went west anyway (the move up west ~1765): another example of American defiance that ultimately led to the revolution.

32. Grenville Program

To raise money to defend Britain's North American possessions, Prime Minister George Grenville imposed new taxes on the colonies. The Sugar Act (1764) taxed sugar, and it tightened smuggling laws. The Quartering Act (1765) required colonists to feed and shelter British soldiers. Most famously, the Stamp Act (1765) put a direct tax (a tax added at the time of purchase) on printed paper. These were the first taxes that England required American consumers to pay directly from their pockets. Significance-Americans such as Samuel Adams organized groups in reaction, most famously the Sons of Liberty. Boycotts of British goods began. England quickly repealed the Stamp Act, but in the Declaratory Act it told the colonies they still were subject to the king's laws.

33. Townshend Acts

The Grenville program (#32) failed but England still needed money to defend the American colonies, so an indirect tax was placed on popular items like tea, glass, and paper. (Indirect taxes were included in the "sticker price" of an item). The Townshend Acts also allowed "writs of assistance" giving officials power to search anywhere for smuggling. This angered smugglers like John Hancock. Samuel Adams protested the new laws and promoted boycotts of English goods. Significance-The English backed down again and repealed most of these taxes. Many Americans were encouraged, thinking whenever they protested Britain would back down. This led to false assumptions about England's desire to enforce laws.

34. Boston Massacre

In the 1770, eight British soldiers fired on a crowd, killing five Bostonians, most likely in self-defense. The most famous of the Americans killed was of African descent, Crispus Attucks. Significance-Though his cousin John Adams defended the soldiers in their trial, Samuel Adams used the event to ratchet up colonial suspicion of rule.

35. Boston Tea Party

In 1773, Sons of Liberty dressed as Indians dumped 342 chests of tea off English Cargo ships into Boston Harbor to protest another new tax. Significance-This led to the Intolerable Acts (#36).

36. Intolerable Acts

To punish Boston for the Tea Party (#35), Parliament passed the Coercive Acts (1774), a series of measures designed to enforce British authority over the colonies. Samuel Adams labeled them the Intolerable Acts. The Acts closed Boston's port, reduced the power of the Massachusetts legislature, put land in the Ohio River Valley under Canadian control, forced colonists to house British soldiers, and prevented local administration of justice in Massachusetts. Significance-Americans united against what they saw as unfair treatment and 12 colonies sent delegates to the First Continental Congress (#37).

37. First Continental Congress

Twelve colonies (not Georgia) sent delegates to Philadelphia in 1774 to organize against what they saw as harsh treatment by the English. The Adams cousins (John and Samuel), Patrick Henry, and George Washington were among the participants. They resolved to resist the Intolerable Acts through more boycotts and to ask the king to restore the colonists' rights as English citizens. They pledged to meet again in a year if conditions didn't improve to their satisfaction. Significance-This was the first large-scale sign of American unity against English colonial policy. The English government sent more troops to Massachusetts to keep order, which only angered colonists more.

38. Battles of Lexington and Concord

In April 1775, the British army in Boston marched out of town to Concord seeking military supplies that angry colonists had stored. Between Boston and Concord, at the town of Lexington, American militia called "Minute men" exchanged musket fire with the British but ran off. Continuing to Concord, the British soldiers were forced to turn back by even more Minute Men. By the time they reached Boston again, 250 of the British "redcoats" were dead or wounded. Significance-The "shot heard 'round the world" at Lexington began the American Revolution.

39. Second Continental Congress

Clearly, relations between the American colonies and the English government had not improved in the year since the First Continental Congress (#37). Representatives from all 13 colonies showed up for the Second (1775). They called for volunteers from all the colonies to fight. Hedging their bets, the delegates also sent the "Olive Branch Petition" to the King, asking for peace and proper treatment as loyal British citizens. Significance-The Second Continental Congress made George Washington commander-in-chief of the Continental army.

40. Battle of Bunker Hill

In June 1775 near Boston, in one of the bloodiest battles of the American Revolution, British soldiers attacked a Patriot (American) cannon emplacement. Significance-The first real battle of the Revolutionary War was tactical victory for the British but moral one for the Americans, who showed they could fight just as well as the greatest army in the world.

41. Thomas Paine

Paine wrote literature during the Revolutionary War supporting the patriots' cause. In "Common Sense" he declared it was time for the colonies to create their own nation, separate from England. In "The Crisis" he encouraged Americans to remain loyal to the Patriot effort, even though difficult times. Significance-Paine was a powerful writer who influenced American public opinion regarding independence in the Revolutionary War cause.

42. Declaration of Independence

In July 1776, the Second Continental Congress (#39) declared the united colonies free of British rules. Thomas Jefferson was the chief author of the document, which included a list of complains against British tyranny and an official declaration of war. Significance-This formal break with Great Britain naturally holds a central position in American history.

43. Tories

About one-third of the colonist was Patriots, supporting independence, one-third were neutral, and one-third supported England. Members of the last group were the Tories or Loyalist, and many fought in battles on England side. Significance-The American colonist were not as united as many people think.

44. Battles of Saratoga

The turning point of the American Revolution, this battle took place in New York in 1777. The British army was utterly defeated by the Patriots. Significance-The victory persuaded France to help the American against England. Foreign assistance from Spain and Holland as well, giving the American a greatly needed boost in supplies and men.

45. Battle of Yorktown

In Virginia in 1781, Washington defeated the British with help from French land and sea forces. Significance-This was the last major battle of the Revolutionary War.

46. Treaty of Paris (1783)

In the treaty that ended the American Revolution, England recognized the independence of the United States and its western boundary at the Mississippi River. Significance-American gained independence from the British for good.

47. Articles of Confederation

The first constitution of the United States, it existed from 1776 to 1788. Strengths: 1) The United States won the war under this constitution. 2) The Land Ordinance of 1785 and the Northwest Ordinance of 1787 made for the addition of state in the future. Weaknesses: 1) There was no strong chief executive. 2) No national courts existed. 3) Congress had no power to tax. Significance-Set the template for the next, and permanent, U.S. Constitution. Articles provided such little unity among the states that the British jested after the War that if they were to send one ambassador, they would have to send 13.

48. Shays' Rebellion

In 1786, Daniel Shays led a rebellion of Massachusetts farmers against government economic policies (#54). Significance-The rebellion was stopped, but many perceived a weakness in the U.S. government under the Articles of Confederation. If the national government were strong, they argued, people like Shays would be too intimidated to start trouble in the first place.

New Constitution and Government, 1787 to 1801


49. Annapolis Convention

After a few years under the Articles of Confederation (#47) it became clear to many people that they weren't effective enough. Delegates met in Annapolis, Maryland in 1786 and agreed to revise and strengthen the Articles at another meeting in Philadelphia. Significance-The Annapolis Convention led to the Constitutional Convention of 1787.

50. Constitutional Convention (1787)

George Washington, Ben Franklin (#26), James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton were among the delegates from 12 states (not Rhode Island) who attended the Constitutional Convention. They created an improved national government. They executed branch was strengthened, a national Judicial system was established, and Congress received the power to tax. The "Great Compromise" expanded Congress to 2 houses: the Senate had 2 members from each state, and the House of Representative has representation based on population. According to the "Three-Fifth Compromise", for every five slaves noted in the census, three counted towards representation in the house. A Bill of Rights was added after the next Congress took power in 1789. Significance-The U.S. Constitution is the oldest document in the world that establishes a democratic party.

51. Federalists vs. Anti

Federalists- Federalists supported the upgraded powers the new Constitution gave the national government, while Anti-Federalists wanted the states to continue to have more power than the federal government. The Federalists won when the Constitution was ratified, but the Anti-Federalists got their way with the inclusion of the Bill of Rights, which limited the powers of the national government. The Washington-Adams presidencies are called the Federalist Era. Significance-The argument over the powers of the U.S. governments led to the formation of the two-party political system.

52. The Federalist Papers

To convince voters in New York to vote for the new Constitution, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison wrote 85 essays in the newspaper. The essays were part political theory, part practical politics, and part emotional persuasion. Significance-The Federalist Papers are considered the handbook for understanding the U.S. Constitution.

53. Hamilton's Financial Program

Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton created a program with these steps: 1) Pay off state debts. 2) Protect American business with high taxes (tariffs) on imported goods. 3) Create a government-run national bank to print money and to receive revenue from taxes. Thomas Jefferson opposed the bank idea, saying there was nothing about a government-run bank in the Constitution. As a "strict constructionist" Jefferson wanted no interpretations of the Constitution's intent. Hamilton, a "loose constructionist", said the elastic clause (the government can do what is "necessary and proper") allows for flexibility in the Constitution. Significance-Hamilton's plan was enacted and had long-reaching effects (#65), including Andrew Jackson's battle with the Second Bank of the United States (#80). Arguments over interpretation of the Constitution continued throughout American history.

54. Whiskey Rebellion

Hamilton tested the effectiveness of the new government by placing a tax on whiskey in 1794. Corn farmers in Pennsylvania attacked tax collectors, and Washington sent U.S. soldiers to confront them. The farmers backed down. Significance-The new government's swift reaction to this rebellion was a big contrast with the weaker response to Shay's Rebellion (#48) under the Articles of Confederation (#47).

55. Washington's Farewell Address

After serving two terms as president, Washington chose not to run for a third. (The 22nd Amendment [1951] limited the presidency to two terms.) In his final message to the nation as president, Washington warned Americans not to get involved in European affairs, not to form permanent alliances, not to form political parties, and to avoid sectionalism-rivalries between different parts of the nation. Significance-Washington's foreign policy advice was generally heeded by his successors until World War I, but political parties and sectionalism (#72) became important parts of the political landscape.

56. Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions

Strained relations with France during John Adam's term (the XYZ Affair) led to congressional approval of the Alien and Sedition Acts, which made criticizing the president a crime. Opposition to these laws included the Kentucky and Virginia Resolution of 1798. Claiming the doctrine of nullification (#79) both states threatened to leave the Union (secede) rather than enforce the Acts. The Acts were eventually overturned. Significance-The idea that states could choose to leave the Union lasted until the Civil War.

57. The Revolution of 1800

Vice President Thomas Jefferson ran for president against John Adams in 1800. The Electoral College failed to select a winner, and the House of Representatives ultimately chose Jefferson after several votes. Jefferson was a member of the Democrat-Republican Party and opposed many of the policies of Adams's Federalists Party. Despite the election controversy, the transfer of power from one party to another was peaceful. Significance-Later, the 12th Amendment to the Constitution required president and vice president to run on tickets from the same party (Jefferson had tied with the man who became his vice president, Aaron Burr.) The peaceful transfer of power from one part to another shoed the American experiment with a democratic republic was a success.

58. An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution

Charles Beard's 1913 book argued that the founding fathers were mainly influenced by their economic self-interest - not by their desire to create a government of, by, and for the people. Significance-Beard's conclusion influenced historians and the greater American public for decades. More recent scholarship holds that the founders were more influenced by the political philosophies popular in the late 18th century than purely by economic gain.

Jefferson Era, 1801 to 1824


59. Louisiana Purchase (1803)

Jefferson accepted the French dictator Napoleon's offer to sell his territory in North America, Louisiana, for around 15 million dollars. This area stretched roughly from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountain. Jefferson faced a quandary as a strict constructionist (#53), since the Constitution says nothing about the president buying land from foreign nations. However, the practical-minded Jefferson realized the deal was too good to pass up. Significance-The Louisiana Purchase instantly doubled the size of the United States and gave it sole access to the vital Mississippi River.

60. Lewis and Clark Expedition

Jefferson sent an Army expedition led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore the Louisiana Purchase. From 1804 to 1806 the group explored up the Missouri River and crossed to the Pacific Ocean in Oregon. Significance-Lewis and Clark established friendly relations with Indians, found that there was no all-water route to the Pacific, and created maps for future settlement in the expansive area.

61. Marbury vs. Madison (1803)

This landmark Supreme Court case decided by Chief Justice John Marshall had to do with appointments to judgeships left over from the Adams administration ("midnight judges"). Significance-Marshall established the doctrine of judicial review, meaning the Supreme Court has the final say in all constitutional matters.

62. Embargo Act (1807)

England and France were at war. Both sides raided U.S. merchant ships and impressed sailor into service in their navies. The United States believed England was the chief culprit but rather than going to war over impressments, Jefferson imposed an embargo of imported goods to put economic pressure on England. Significance-The plan was a disaster because the American economy was hurt much more than the England economy and Jefferson repealed the Act.

63. War of 1812 (1812

1815) - By 1812, impressments and other issue pushed America and England into war. Many Americans wanted to take possession of British-held Canada. It was believed the British were stirring up anti-American sentiment among Indians on the frontier. Congressmen like John C. Calhoun and Henry Clay, the "War Hawks", clamored for war. Once war was declared, there was talk of secession (#56, #111) from New Englanders at the Hartford Convention. After a series of battles and few successes, America and England signed the Treaty of Ghent. Significance-American victory at New Orleans (1815) just as the war ended created a surge of national pride. The Americans had fought England in two wars and won them both. The Federalist Party, which had opposed the war, faded in importance.

64. Era of Good Feeling

James Monroe was last of the Founding Fathers to serve as president, for two terms (1817-1825). His term saw a great era of optimism and national pride called the Era of Good Feeling. Significance-In this era American came to believe they were members of one nation, rather than of individual states.

65. Clay's American System

Representative Henry Clay from Kentucky proposed a governmental plan similar to Hamilton's (#53) to promote the American economy. It included 1) a tax on imports (protective tariff), 2) a national bank, and 3) internal improvements (government-funded canals and roads). Significance-This system was adopted and is credited with fostering the basis of American economic success.

66. Mcculloch vs. Maryland (1819)

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall ruled the national bank created by Hamilton (#53) and re-chartered under the American System (#65) was constitutional because of the implied powers the Constitution grants the federal government. Significance-This ruling solidified the power of the national government over the states and reinforced the Supreme Court's power to interpret the Constitution.

67. Missouri Compromise

In 1820 Kentucky Representatives Henry Clay earned his reputation as the "Great Compromiser" by mediating a conflict in Congress over the admission of Missouri as a slave state. In the agreement approved by Congress, Missouri was allowed to be a slave state; Maine was admitted as a free state, and all the rest of the land in the Louisiana Purchase above Missouri's southern border outlawed slavery. Significance-The Missouri Compromise touched off a debate over slavery that lasted until the Civil War and was the template for solving Congressional conflicts over slavery until 1850 (#98).

68. Monroe Doctrine

In 1823 President James Monroe declared that Europe was not to colonize any further in Latin America and not to interfere with countries in Latin America in the future. If they did, he said, the nations of Europe would have to answer to the United States. Significance-The Monroe Doctrine was the most important foreign policy decision of the 19th century. It played a major part in the Spanish-American War (#196), the creation of the Panama Canal (#207), and in the 20th century, the Cuban Missile Crisis (#324).

69. Industrial Innovations, Late 18th, Early 19th Centuries

Eli Whitney produced the cotton gin (1793) and interchangeable parts. Samuel Slater introduced the cotton-thread factory system in 1791, which led to the Lowell factory system in Massachusetts during the 1830's. The McCormick Reaper and John Deere's steel plow increased agricultural productivity. Significance-The cotton gin created a boom in the demand for cotton and slaves; the use of interchangeable parts greatly shortened production time and led to the modern assembly line. The Lowell system became the model for others factories throughout the 19th century. The steel plow turned what had been the "Great American Desert" into the Great Plains (#87).

70. Transportation Improvements, Early 19th Century

The world's first steamboat, the Clermont, built by Robert Fulton, sailed the Hudson River in 1807. A federally funded national road, the Cumberland Road, was built from Maryland to Illinois from 1811 to the 1850's. The Erie Canal in New York (1825) provided a big boost to that region's economy and triggered other canals projects. By 1830's, railroad lines connected cities with reliable transportation. Significance-Fast and efficient transportation meant lower prices for goods and an expanding national economy.

71. Panic of 1819

The economy took a sharp downturn in the Monroe administration with the Panic of 1819. A chief cause was land speculation. Too many people borrowed money from banks to buy land from the government, usually in the West. When the land didn't sell, people defaulted on loans, banks closed, and unemployment increased sharply. Significance-The Panic of 1819 was the first big economic downturn since the ratification of the Constitution and put a damper on the nationalist spirit of the Era of Good Feeling (#64).

72. Sectionalism

After the Era of Good Feeling (#64) the three main regions of the nation-North, West, and South-increasingly saw themselves as distinct. The North was the most industrialized with many railroads and factories. The South had slaves, wealthy planters, and small farmers. The West saw many settlers on the move. (In the early 19th century, Tennessee to the Mississippi River was "the West"). Significance-Factions arose in Congress over issues that favored one region but hurt another. Suspicions about the people in "other" parts of the country fed into the growing conflicts that became the Civil War.

Jackson Era, 1824 to 1844


73. Corrupt Bargain

In 1824, Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay, and John Quincy Adams ran for president. The disputed election results were settled by the House of Representatives, where Clay gave his support-and therefore the election-to Adams. Adams then named Clay his secretary of state. Jackson complained that his two rivals had made a "corrupt bargain". Significance-Jackson immediately began campaigning for the 1828 election, when he defeated John Quincy Adams.

74. Age of the Common Man

Andrew Jackson, hero of the Battle of New Orleans, self-made man, and wealthy plantation owner from Tennessee, embodied what many Americans hoped to be. Nearly all white males were eligible to vote in 1828 and they overwhelming voted for "Old Hickory". Jackson was the first president from the Democratic Party and from the West. Significance-With this new expression of democracy came reform movements from every corner, advocating causes such as women's rights, abolition, and humane treatment of prisoners and the mentally ill (#77).

75. Second Great Awakening

A religious revival began in the early 19th century and grew through the Jackson era. Significance-It sparked several major developments in religion and reform movements. The Mormons, or Church of Latter Day Saints, were founded by Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. After facing much persecution in the Northeast and Midwest, the Mormons migrated to Utah in the 1830's. Utopian communities, often based on religious foundations, arose around the nation. Brook Farm in Massachusetts, New Harmony in Indiana, and the Oneida Community in New York were attempts to create perfect societies isolated from the rest of the world. All failed.

76. Art and Literature of the Early 19th Century

The Hudson River school was a popular artistic style that promoted national pride with beautiful paintings of American nature. Transcendentalism as a philosophy that attracted writers Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. The latter wrote Walden and the essay "On Civil Disobedience." Transcendentalists believed in searching for God in nature and in returning to a simpler lifestyle. Other important writers were Washington Irving, James Fennimore Cooper, and Nathaniel Hawthorne. Significance-An American style of literature developed and became respected here and in Europe in this era.

77. Jackson Era Reform Movements

The temperance movement opposed alcohol consumption. Dorothea Dix pushed for the rights of the mentally ill, who were often put in jails. The focus of prison switched to reform rather than solely punishment. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott promoted equal rights for women, leading the Seneca Falls Convention in New York in 1848. William Lloyd Garrison pushed the abolitionist (antislavery) newspaper, The Liberator. Significance-The temperance movement reached its political goal with the 18th Amendment outlawing alcoholic beverages in 1919. Dix's efforts led to the building of mental hospitals. Women received the right to vote from the 19th Amendment in 1920. The abolitionist was a long-term cause of the Civil War.

78. Trail of Tears

Like most voters of the time, Jackson believed white settlers and Indians should not live close to each other. In 1830 he signed the Indian Removal Act. Thousands of Cherokees in the southeast were forced to move to Oklahoma along what is known as the "Trail of Tears." Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall ruled in Worcester v. Georgia that the Indians should stay on their original land. Jackson openly defied the ruling. Significance-Jackson's decision revealed a truth about the democratic Age of the Common Man: it referred only to white men.

79. Nullification Crisis (1832)

South Carolina refused to pay the federal tariff (import taxes), calling it the "Tariff of Abominations." Its politicians cited the nullification theory (#56), claiming that states could ignore federal laws they thought were wrong, and threatened to secede. Jackson, usually a states-rights supporter, sided against South Carolina and for preserving the Union. In Congress Daniel Webster and Robert Hayne famously debated the issue. When Henry Clay forged the lower Compromise Tariff of 1833 and when Jackson threatened to invade South Carolina, the state backed down. Significance-The nullification doctrine was reused in the A Civil War (#111).

80. Second Bank of the United States

Jackson hates the Second Bank of the United States (#53, #65), claiming it was an unconstitutional use of the federal government's power and that it enriched the wealthy at the expense of the masses. Jackson dissolved the bank and deposited its money into smaller banks around the country, called "pet banks" by his enemies. Then he issued the Specie Circular to curb inflation. This required all purchases of federal land (mostly in the West) to be made in gold or silver. Significance-Killing the bank and issuing the Specie Circular led to an economic depression, the Panic of 1837.

81. The Log Cabin Campaign of 1840

Jackson served two terms in office. Voters elected his friend, Martin Van Buren, in 1836. In 1840, Van Buren ran for reelection against Whig candidate and War of 1812 hero, "Old Tippecanoe" William Henry Harrison. The Whig Party was formed during Jackson's administration by people who opposed the policies of "King Andrew the First" Harrison was portrayed as a common man who, like Jackson, came from humble origins. The First famous campaign slogan, "Tippecanoe and Tyler too!" was used (John Tyler was running for vice president). The Panic of 1837 (#80) ruined Van Buren's chances for reelection. Significance-The 1840 campaign was the most colorful of the 19th century and saw the highest percentage of voter turnout in the 19th century.

Westward Expansion, 1820s to 1850s


82. Manifest Destiny

In the 1840s many Americans believed it was the nation's "manifest Destiny" to extend its borders from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Significance-This belief spurred migration to the West beyond the Mississippi River all the way to the Pacific Ocean and was a major cause of the Mexican War (#85).

83. Texas

American settlers began moving into Texas in the 1820s and lived under Mexican laws. By the 1830s so many had poured in that their presence concerned the Mexican government. In 1836, Sam Houston declared an independent Republic of Texas, so Mexican leader Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna attacked Americans at the Alamo in San Antonio. Santa Anna was later defeated by Houston and agreed to recognize Texan independence. In 1845 the United States added Texas to the Union as a slave state. Significance-Conflict over Texas was a cause of the Mexican War (#85) but its addition to the Union greatly increased the size of the nation.

84. "Fifty

Four Forty or Fight"- This was the slogan of the Democrats when James K. Polk ran for president in 1844. It referred to a boundary dispute with England over the northern border of the Oregon territory. Americans wanted Oregon to extend up to the lowest border of Russian-held Alaska, and England wanted to extend Canada down to the southern border of modern-day Washington State. Significance-Polk won the election with his slogan but later the United States and England negotiated a border at 49 degrees north latitude, the current northern boundary of Washington State.

85. Mexican War

Tensions rose between Mexico and America over America's annexation of Texas in 1845 (#83). In 1846 a U.S. Army patrol to the Mexican border claimed it was attacked and cries for war began in Congress. War was declared and the American army captured the capital and defeated the Mexicans. In the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (1848), Mexico recognized the current Texas border and sold California, Utah, Nevada, and parts of New Mexico, Arizona, Wyoming, and Colorado to the United States: Mexican Cession. Significance-Manifest Destiny (#82) was achieved, relations between the United States and Mexico remained sour, and future Civil War generals received their combat training.

86. Gadsden Purchase

The southern border of present-day New Mexico and Arizona was established with this land purchase from Mexico for a railroad route (1853). Significance-Some believe the high price American paid for this land ($10 million) was a form of apology for the outcome of the Mexican War.

87. Routes West

From the 1820s to the end of the 1850s, three primary routes were taken by Americans migrating from East to West. 1) The wagon train consisted of settlers who traveled in groups of wagons across the "Great American Desert," later called the Great Plains (#69). This was the most popular method. A popular "jumping-off point" was independence, Missouri. 2) People with more money sometimes took a clipper ship (#89) under South American and up to present-day Panama, crossed the isthmus on foot, and picked up a ship on the Pacific side to California. Significance-Hundreds of thousands of people moved West during this era in the biggest migration in American History.

88. Forty

Niners- Gold was found near Sacramento, California in 1848 and by the next year everybody in the nation had heard about it. This began a gold rush to California; those who traveled there looking for fortune were called "Forty-Niners." Other gold rushes occurred in Colorado and Nevada in the 1850s, the Dakotas in the 1870s, and Alaska in the 1890s. Significance-The gold fever was the greatest reason why record-setting numbers of people headed West during this era.

89. Industrial Technology of the Mid

19th Century- Elias Howe invented the sewing machine. Samuel F.B. Morse developed the telegraph and the communication language for it. America's development of clipper ships meant the United States had the fastest sailing vessel of the era. However, by the mid-1850s steamboats took their place. In 1854 U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew C. Perry steamed to Japan and forced the reluctant nation into a trading agreement. Significance-Howe's invention revolutionized the clothing industry, increasing production and lowering prices dramatically. With the telegraph, fast communication over long distances was possible. Clipper ships and ocean-going steamboats proved America was a major force in sea trade. Perry's "opening" of Japan prodded that nation into developing a modern economy and military force.

Buildup to the Civil War


90. Antebellum Period

This was the era between the War of 1812 and the Civil War. (Antebellum is Latin for "before the war.") After James K. Polk served his term, the presidents of this era were generally weak. Significance-The South grew in economic and political power. Political and social arguments over slavery increased, culmination in war.

91. "King Cotton"

The most important crop to the South by far in the antebellum period (#90) was cotton. It was America's biggest export. Because cotton farming was so labor-intensive, slavery became even more essential to the Southern economy. Significance-Cotton was the greatest reason for the South's increasing economic and political power before the Civil War.

92. Peculiar Institution

Southerners who defended slavery used this term to describe it ("peculiar" meant "different," not "strange"). They argued that Northerners who opposed slavery weren't in a position to truly understand it well enough to have an opinion about it. Significance-As opposition to slavery grew in the antebellum period. So did the numbers of ways its supporters tried to defend it-or at least, change the argument.

93. Nat turner Slave Revolt

This most famous of the relatively few slave revolts in the South occurred in 1831 in Virginia, led by slave Nat Turner. Significance-The largest of all slave revolts, it failed but led to increased slave patrols, suspicions, and racial tension in the South.

94. Social Hierarchy in the Antebellum South

Most Southerners did not own slaves, but the pinnacle of Southern society consisted of the planter class-people who owned 60 or more slaves and sizeable plantations. Next were professionals-doctors and merchants, for example, some of whom owned slaves. Next came middle-class (yeomen) farmers who owned less land and fewer slaves. The poor farmers at the bottom of white society still were at a level higher than slaves. Significance- Slavery defined the social order of the South.

95. Southern Defense of Slavery

As the number of slaves increased (to almost 4 million by 1860) so did pressure from abolitionists. In response, supporters of slavery developed several defenses of the "peculiar institution" (#92), including the following: slavery is in the Bible; slave owners provide free food, clothing, medical care, and shelter; slave owners Christianize and civilized slaves. Significance-Supporters of slavery refused to be silent while their way of life was attacked, escalating anger and rhetoric between North and South.

96. Frederick Douglass

This abolition (#77) leader was born into slavery, and so was particularly able to address its evils. Significance-Douglass was famous in the North because he was eloquent speaker and the publisher of an abolitionist paper, The North Star.

97. Underground Railroad

Escaped slaves followed secret routes from South to North, often into Canada. Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth became famous for leading people out of slavery. Significance-In both north and south, abolitionist sympathizer risked fines and jail when they allowed escaped slaves to hide on their property.

98. Compromise of 1850

Henry Clay's (#67) last compromise included several provisions. 1) California was admitted to the Union as a free state. 2) The slave trade became illegal in Washington, DC but slavery was still legal there. 3) The Fugitive Slave Law made it easier for slave owners to recapture escaped slaves. Significance-This final compromise between defender and opponent of slavery held off the Civil War for 10 years.

99. Uncle Tom's Cabin

Harriet Beecher Stowe's novel depicted the mistreatment of slaves on a plantation. It became the most-read novel of its time, and it angered many on both sides of the slavery question. Opponents of slavery saw it as a true depicted of life in the South, but those who defended slavery said it unfairly painted all slave owners as evil. Significance-Lincoln later called Stowe "the little lady who made this big war".

100. Popular Sovereignty

This was a political attempt in the 1850's to ease tensions over the status of slavery in new territories. Under Popular Sovereignty, when a region gained enough people to officially form a territory the voters chose whether or not to allow slavery. Significance-See the Kansas-Nebraska Act (#101).

101. Kansas

Nebraska Act- Congress passed this law in 1854. It let voters in these two new territories decide for themselves whether slavery would be allowed there (#100). Both Kansas and Nebraska were above the Missouri Compromise line (#67). Significance-Despite its intentions, the Kansas-Nebraska Act increased antagonism between North and South and led to violence in Kansas and in Congress (#103).

102. Stephen A. Douglas

This Illinois senator developed the concept of Popular Sovereignty (#100) and the Kansas-Nebraska Act (#101). His nickname was "The Little Giant" for his small stature and big speaking voice. He famously defeated Abraham Lincoln in the race for the Illinois senate in 1858 (#108). Significance-Douglas was one of the Senate's most influential leaders in the 1850's, but his connection with the controversial Kansas-Nebraska Act (#101) and a split within his party hurt him in the presidential election of 1860, which went to Lincoln (#110).

103. "Bleeding Kansas" and Brooks

Sumner Attack- Violence erupted in Kansas when pro-and antislavery settlers attacked each other between 1854 and 1856. Approximately 200 people were killed throughout the territory. In Washington, D.C., proslavery South Carolina Congressmen Preston Brooks used a walking cane to beat up antislavery Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner during session. Significance-The attacks in Kansas and on the floor of the Senate showed the slavery issue was not going to be settled through compromise.

104. John Brown

Brown led the most infamous attacks in "Bleeding Kansas" (#103). At Pottawatomie Creek Brown and his sons killed five pro-slavery settlers. He escaped prosecution and attempted to stage a slave revolt from Harper's Ferry, Virginia in 1859 (#109). Significance-Despite his behavior, John Brown became a hero to some abolitionists, but many supporters of slavery saw his violent acts as representatives of abolitionists, but many supporters of slavery saw his violent acts as representatives of abolitionists in general and felt even more threatened.

105. American (Know

Nothing) Party- This short-lived third party of the 1850's opposed further immigrants and the spread of Catholicism. Supporters feared that immigrants were taking jobs that belonged to American who already here, and they feared that growing numbers of Catholics, particularly from Ireland, threatened the Protestant majority. When it came to other political and social questions, members of this party often said they "knew nothing". Significance-The debate over the number of immigrants allowed into United States has continued throughout American history.

106. Republican Party

This party was founded in 1854 in reaction against the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act (#101), by members of the Democrats and the Whigs who opposed the spread of slavery into the new territories. Republican basically had no support in the South. The first Republican president was Lincoln, elected in 1860. Significance-The Republican quickly became a major party, rivaling the Democrats as early as the 1856 presidential election. The party usually dominated all branches of the federal government from 1860 through the 1920's.

107. Dred Scott vs. Sanford

This controversial 1857 Supreme Court case struck down the Missouri Compromise (#67), allowing slavery to expand in the "free" territories of the North and West. Scott was a slave who was forced to accompany his master from Missouri to the free territory of Wisconsin in the 1830''s. One back in Missouri and after his master's death, Scott sued for freedom, arguing that he shouldn't have been a slave in Wisconsin since it did not permit slavery. Chief Justice Roger Taney not only sided with the majority against Scott, but also overturned the Missouri Compromise, claiming it deprived slave owners the right to own property wherever they chose. Significance-This was another big step toward the Civil War. Slavery supporters rejoiced while abolitionists fumed.

108. Lincoln

Douglas Debates- In the 1858 Illinois senate election, Republican candidate Abraham Lincoln challenged the incumbent Democrat, Senator Stephen A. Douglas (#102), to a series of debates, which were mostly about slavery. Despites an excellent showing in the debates, including his famous "House Divided" speech, Lincoln last the election. Significance-This election was covered by the national press and Lincoln became famous...and the president in 1860.

109. Harper's Ferry, Virginia

In 1859, John Brown (#104) and followers tried to start revolt. To get weapons they attacked an arsenal in Harper's Ferry, Virginia. Brown's plan was to arm local slaves, and as word spread for this revolt, for slaves throughout the South to rebel and claim their freedom. Colonel Robert E. Lee led the U.S. Army's capture of Brown, who was tried and hanged for treason. Significance-This violent outbreak brought the country closer to civil war. With his death, Brown became a martyr to the abolitionist cause.

110. Election of 1860

The Democrats split over slavery. The Southern Democrats ran the current Vice President John C. Breckinridge of Kentucky, and Northern Democrats ran Senator A Douglas of Illinois (#102). Abraham Lincoln of Illinois was the Republican nominee. A fourth group, the Constitutional Union Party, which favored attempting more compromise over slavery, ran John Bell of Tennessee. Despite not appearing on the ballot in most slaves, Lincoln won a majority of the electoral votes but only 40% of the popular vote. Significance- South Carolina and other slave states threatened to secede if Lincoln, wrongly seen as an abolitionist, was elected.

111. Secession

After the victory of Republican Abraham Lincoln in the presidential election of 1860, South Carolina broke from the Union. Six other slave states in the Deep South soon followed (Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Missouri, Louisiana, and Texas). With South Carolina, they formed the Confederate Sates of America (#114). After war broke out at Fort Sumter in April 1861 (#116), Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas joined the Confederacy. Significance-States threatened to leave the Union over the War of 1812 (#63) and during the Nullification Crisis (#79), but in the late 1860 and early 1861, they actually did.

112. Crittenden Compromise

After the first 7 slave states left the Union, Kentucky Senator John Crittenden proposed an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that guaranteed slavery below the Missouri Compromise line. It failed. Significance-This was a classic case of "too little, too late". By 1860, compromise was the last thing on the minds of both pro-and antislavery factions.

113. Border States

Four states permitted slavery but did not join the Confederacy: Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, and Delaware. Significance-The fact that four slave states chose to remain in the union was a normal victory for Lincoln and a strategic loss for the Confederacy in the Civil War.

Civil War and Reconstruction


114. Confederate States of America

This was the government of the 11 states that seceded from the Union. Its constitution was based on the Articles of Confederation (#47); therefore the individual states had more power than the national government. The capital was Montgomery, Alabama until it was moved to Richmond, Virginia in May 1861. Slavery was guaranteed in its constitution. Significance-The Confederacy conducted the war effort for the South but was never recognized by the United States, or by any foreign nation.

115. Jefferson Davis

Davis was the only president of the Confederacy. A Mississippi senator, he was secretary of war (now defense) in the cabinet of President Franklin Pierce. Significance-Davis led the Confederacy's war effort in the Civil War.

116. Fort Sumter

After secession (#111), most of the Army's coastal forts in the South were turned over to the Confederacy, but the fort in the Charleston, South Carolina harbor remained in Union hands. In April 1861, despite warning from the Confederate government, Lincoln sent supplies to the Union troops in Fort Sumter. The Confederate fired cannons at the fort for 40 hours and the Union troops surrender. Significance-Fort Sumter was the site of the first shots of the Civil War. After Lincoln called for 90 day volunteer to put down the rebellion, the slave state of North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Arkansas seceded.

117. Goals of North and South in the Civil War

the Confederacy's goal were to become an independent slaveholding country recognized by the United States and foreign powers. The initial goal of the United States was to restore the seceded states to the Union, but after the Emancipation Proclamation (#124) the goal of ending slavery was added. Significance-Once the United States adopted emancipation as a reason for fighting the Civil War, it claimed the moral high ground in the conflict.

118. Advantages of North and South in the Civil War

The United States had a higher population, a better navy, more factories, more railroads, and more farmland, but the Confederate States had a higher percentage of people who supported its cause, was usually defending familiar ground, and had a greater military tradition. Significance-The Confederacy had the advantage in a short war, but the Union's strengths helped it more in a long war.

119. First Battle of Bull Run

The first big land battle of the Civil War took place on July 21, 1861, in Virginia. The Confederates won the battle. Significance-This victory made the Confederacy overly confident in its abilities to win the war, and caused many Union generals to consistently overestimate the power of Confederate forces in future battles.

120. Anaconda Plan

Union general-in-chief Winfield Scott planned to isolate the Confederacy via several steps. 1) The U.S. Navy would blockade the South's ports to keep it from trading with foreign nations. 2) The Union would take control of the Mississippi River (thereby cutting the South off from the West). 3) Scott would raise a large Union army and take the Confederate capital at Richmond, Virginia. 4) The Union army would divide the South by capturing the Tennessee River Valley and marching through Georgia to the coast. Significance-Unlike most strategists, Scott made plans for a long war, and he was proven correct.

121. Battle of Antietam

In September 1862, Confederate general Robert E. Lee invaded Maryland, hoping a victory would convince the state to join the Confederacy. At Antietam, Union and Confederate forces fought to a tie, but Lee withdrew to Virginia after the battle. Significance-This was the bloodiest day of the war (22,000 killed or wounded). Heartened by Lee's retreat, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation (#124), effective January 1863. Maryland remained in the Union.

122. Bloody Shiloh

In western Tennessee in April 1862, the Union achieved a difficult victory in heavy fighting. A total of 23,000 were killed or wounded in two days. Significance-This battle, part of the Union strategy to take the Mississippi River, was the bloodiest in the "West", a term used to describe all fighting west of the Appalachian Mountains.

123. Monitor vs. Merrimac

Two ships, the U.S.S. Monitor and the C.S.S. Merrimac, battled each near Hampton Roads, Virginia in March 1862. Neither was a cleat winner. Significance-This was the first "clash of ironclads"-ships covered in iron, not just wood-and marked the beginning of modern naval design.

124. Emancipation Proclamation

After the battle of Antietam (#121), President Lincoln announced that on January 1, 1863, slaves would be free in all areas in rebellion against the United States. Significance-The Emancipation Proclamation shifted the main reason for the Civil War from reunification with the South of freedom for the slaves. It got the attention of important foreign opponents of slavery like England, which voted to not recognize the Confederacy.

125. Vicksburg Campaign

In July 1863, after a long campaign to take the Mississippi River out of Confederate control, Union general Ulysses S. Grant's forces obtained the surrender of Vicksburg, Mississippi. A few days later, the Confederate army downriver at Port Hudson, Louisiana gave up as well, prompting Lincoln to write, "The father of waters again goes unvexed to the seas." Significance-With these victories, one phase of the Anaconda Plan (#120) was complete.

126. Battle of Gettysburg

This battle involved the most soldiers and produced the most death in the Civil War. In July 1863, Confederate general Robert E. Lee's army marched into the southern Pennsylvania. In three days of fighting over 50,000 soldiers were killed or wounded and Lee retreated to Virginia. In November, Lincoln gave famous Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the national cemetery there. Significance-The Battle of Gettysburg was the turning point of the Civil War. Lincoln's speech is widely considered the greatest in American history.

127. Copperheads

Antiwar citizens of the Union were called Copperheads, after the poisonous snake. Some Copperheads were openly pro-Confederate. Significance-The existence of the Copperheads showed that in the Union support for the war was not universal. There were even anti-draft riots in New York City in 1863.

128. Sherman's March to the Sea

Union general William Tecumseh Sherman believed the best way to end the war as soon as possible was to be as destructive as possible; depriving the Confederacy of the materials and will it needed to keep going. Sherman's army marched "to the sea" from Chattanooga, Tennessee to Savanna, Georgia, destroying everything in its path. Significance-Sherman's strategy marked the beginning of the doctrine of total war, under which soldiers and civilians alike are considered legitimate targets.

129. Appomattox Court House

The Confederate capital, Richmond, Virginia, fell to Union forces in April 1865. On April 9, 1865, Confederate general Robert E. Lee surrendered to Union general Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House in southwest Virginia. Significance-Lee's surrender marked the last major campaign of the Confederacy in the Civil War.

130. Results of the Civil War

Almost 620,000 Americans died. Lincoln was assassinated just after the war's end. Almost four million slaves were freed, but their place in American society remained unclear for decades. The Union was restored during the Reconstruction era (#131). The power of the federal government increased. No state seriously threatened to secede again. The industrial revolution, begun after the War of 1812 and involving railroads and other manufacturing sectors (#69, #72, #89), was greatly accelerated. Significance-All of the events cited above had major, lasting impacts on American society.

131. Reconstruction

From 1865 to 1877, the states of the Confederacy were brought back into the Union. Congress and the presidents of this era clashed over the proper methods of restoration. Significance-Reconstruction was a difficult transitional era that saw a great deal of political fighting over the use of power by the national government.

132. Lincoln

Johnson Plan- Also known as the 10% Plan, this was Lincoln's (and later, President Andrew Johnson's) plan to restore the Confederate states to the Union. Lincoln proposed that pardons go to ex-Confederates who: 1) pledged their alliance to the United States and 2) accepted the end of slavery. When at least 10% of the former Confederates did so, the state could write a new constitution outlawing slavery, and new representatives could be sent to Congress. Significance-Opposition to this lenient plan quickly arose in Congress, leading to unprecedented battles between the legislative and executive branches of government.

133. Wade

Davis Bill- To counter the Lincoln-Johnson Plan (#132), in 1864 Congress approved this bill, which tightened the rules allowing ex-Confederate states back into the Union. Instead of 10%, 50% of a state's voters had to take a loyalty oath and no one from the former Confederate army could vote for a new state constitution. Lincoln refused to sign the bill, so it failed. Significance-This was an early example of the battles to come between president and Congress during Reconstruction.

134. Freedmen's Bureau

Congress created this government agency in March 1865 to help freed slaves and destitute whites recover from the war by providing food, clothing, and shelter. Most famously, schools were built throughout the South to educate ex-slaves. President Johnson vetoed a provision in the Freedmen's Bureau bill to give land to ex-slaves, commonly called "forty acres and a mule". Significance-Despite its mixed successes, this was the federal government's first welfare agency-a sign of the growing power of the national government after the Civil War.

135. Radical Republicans

Radical Republicans were opponents of the Lincoln-Johnson Plan for Reconstruction. Leaders like Thaddeus Stevens, Benjamin Wade, and Charles Sumner sought to treat the former Confederate states like conquered provinces to be occupied by U.S. military forces until Congress readmitted the states. Significance-The Radicals won many Congressional seats in the 1866 elections and dominated Reconstruction policy for years.

136. Congressional Reconstruction

President Andrew Johnson angered many members of Congress by vetoing several Reconstruction bills. Led by the Radical Republicans (#135), Congress in 1867 voted to end the Lincoln-Johnson Plan (#132) and place the states of the former Confederacy under military control. Significance-Struggles between the president and Congress were particularly harsh during Reconstruction and took out their anger on ex-slaves, using political, social, and economic tactics.

137. "Civil War Amendments"

This name is commonly applied to the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. The 13th (1865) ended slavery; the 14th (1868) defined a citizen as anyone born in the United States and guaranteed "equal protection" to all citizens; and the 15th (1870) gave voting rights to black males. Significance-The elevation of American slaves from servitude to voting citizens took place in just five years. Debates continue over the meaning of "citizens" and "equal protection".

138. Impeachment

In 1867 Congress passed the Tenure of Office Act, which said that the president couldn't fire anyone without congressional approval. Johnson deliberately violated this law to challenge it's constitutionally. In 1868 Radical Republican tried to get rid of President Johnson by charging him with "high crimes and misdemeanor" in a procedure called "impeachment". Johnson was found not guilty by a slim vote in Congress. Significance-Impeachment does not men conviction, but instead a bringing of charges and a trial. Presidents Johnson and Clinton (#347) both were impeached, but neither was convicted. However, the effectiveness of both presidents diminished afterward.

139. Carpetbaggers and Scalawags

These were nicknames given to supporters of Reconstruction. Southerners called Northerners who moved South during Reconstruction "carpetbaggers" (a carpetbag was a type of suitcase). "Scalawags" were even worse--they were Southerners who supported the carpetbaggers (on a farm, a scalawag was a useless animal). Significance-The use of these derisive names shows the resentment many Southerners had toward Reconstruction.

141. Sharecropping

After the Civil War many ex-slaves continued to work for their former owners in agricultural labor. Landowners provided materials and seed in exchange for roughly half of the harvest. Sharecroppers were usually paid in money that was good only at the landowner's private store. This system survived in some parts of the South until the 1960's. Significance-With no land of their own, and very little widely accepted currency, sharecropping families were caught in an economic trap with few chances for advancement.

142. Ku Klux Klan

These laws were enacted after the Civil War, most prominently in the South, to deny civil rights to African American. "Black codes" forbade blacks from testifying against white citizens in court, made voting almost impossible, and strictly segregated white and black societies. Significance-Despite their southern origin, laws that discriminate on account of race existed throughout the United States until the 1960's, helped by the 1896 Supreme Court ruling in Plessy vs. Ferguson (#158).

143. Compromise of 1877

To settle the dispute 1876 presidential election, eventual winner Rutherford B. Hayes pledged to pull the last of the U.S. soldiers out of the three remaining "unreconstructed" states of the former Confederacy: South Carolina, Louisiana, and Florida. Significance-Reconstruction ended, but in the South bitterness against its politics and practices remained.

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