American Historical Figures Set 1
Terms in this set (49)
John Adams (1735-1826)
American lawyer, member of the Continental
Congress, and second president of the United States. Moving force for American independence in the Revolution and major figure in the Federalist
John Quincy Adams (1767-1848)
American lawyer and sixth president of
the United States. Elected president by the House of Representatives in the contested election of 1824 but tainted by suspicion of a "corrupt bargain" struck with Henry Clay.
Nicholas Biddle (1786-1844).
American financier. President of the Second
Bank of the United States, who triggered the "Bank War" of 1832 by applying for re-chartering of the bank in the face of Andrew Jackson's opposition
John Burgoyne (1722-1792).
British playwright, politician, and general.
Commanded British invasion force from Canada in 1777, only to be defeated and forced to surrender his army at Saratoga, New York.
Aaron Burr (1756-1836).
. American lawyer and vice president of the United
States. Allied himself with Thomas Jefferson and served as Jefferson's first vice president but alienated many Jeffersonians and was dropped from the ticket in 1804. Notorious for having killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel in 1804. Indicted for treason in 1807 after a plot to set up a separate republic in the southwest.
Horace Bushnell (1802-1876).
American Congregational theologian. Proposed new ways of understanding traditional Calvinist religious language.
John Caldwell Calhoun (1782-1850).
American politician and vice president of the United States. Attempted to shield the South from nationalist economic schemes; Calhoun proposed "nullification" of federal tariffs as a state's right and later demanded the opening of the Mexican Cession to slavery
Henry Clay (1777-1852).
American politician and secretary of state.
Originally one of the "hawks" who agitated for the War of 1812, he became the author of the "American System" and founder of the Whig Party.
DeWitt Clinton (1769-1828).
American politician and governor of New
York. Proposed construction of the Erie Canal in 1816.
James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851).
American novelist. Introduced Romanticism to American literature through his series of "Leatherstocking Tales" (1823-1841), including The Last of the Mohicans (1826).
Charles Cornwallis (First Marquis and second Earl Cornwallis, 1738-
. British general. Served in the Seven Years' War and the Revolution, in which he commanded the major British fi eld force in the American South.
Forced to surrender at Yorktown, Virginia, in 1781.
John Dickinson (1732-1808)
American lawyer and politician. Served in the
Continental Congress and was largely responsible for drafting the Articles of Confederation. Chaired the Annapolis Convention in 1786 and wrote on
behalf of the new federal Constitution
Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758).
American Congregational theologian. Pastor of Northampton, Massachusetts, during the Great Awakening and author of important treatises defending the awakening and traditional Puritan
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
American essayist and philosopher.
Originally a Unitarian minister, he became the leading light of transcendentalism and popularized Romanticism in American philosophy
Charles Grandison Finney (1792-1875)
American Presbyterian theologian and educator. The most famous preacher of the Second Great Awakening, he helped found Oberlin College and served as pastor of Oberlin's First Church.
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790).
American printer, publisher, politician, scientist, and diplomat. Served in the Second Continental Congress and helped negotiate the Treaty of Paris. Signed both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
Robert Fulton (1765-1815).
American inventor. Designed and built the first
commercially successful steamboat, the Clermont.
Thomas Gage (1720-1787).
British general. Commanded British forced
in North America from 1763 to 1775. Organized the raid that became thebattles of Lexington and Concord.
William Lloyd Garrison (1805-1879).
American newspaper editor and abolitionist. Founded the abolitionist newspaper The Liberator in 1831 and founded the American Anti-Slavery Society.
Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804).
American lawyer, soldier, and first secretary of the treasury. His three Reports to Congress as treasury secretary helped shape the economic development of the American Republic.
William Henry Harrison (1773-1841).
American soldier, politician, and eighth president of the United States. Cleared the Northwest Territory of Indian resistance at the battle of Tippecanoe in 1811 and defeated the British
at the battle of the Thames in 1813 during the War of 1812. The first Whig president and the first president to die in office.
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864).
American novelist. Originally influenced by transcendentalism, he turned to crafting an outstanding series of historical novels, especially The Scarlet Letter (1850) and The House of
Seven Gables (1851).
Charles Hodge (1797-1878).
American Presbyterian theologian. As seminary professor at Princeton Theological Seminary, he was the principal figure in the creation of the Princeton Theology.
Sir William Howe (1729-1814).
). British general. Commanded British forces
in North America from 1775 to 1778, winning a series of victories over the Continental Army at Long Island, Brandywine, and Germantown, but he was unsuccessful in completely snuffing out the Revolution.
Henry Hudson (d. 1611).
British navigator and explorer. Sponsored by the
Dutch West Indies Company, he discovered the Hudson River in 1609 but died in a futile attempt to discover a northwest passage to China.
Andrew Jackson (1767-1845).
American soldier and seventh president of
the United States. Lionized for his victory over the British at New Orleans in 1815, Jackson was denied the presidency through the "corrupt bargain"
of 1824 but was elected in 1828 and 1832 and pursued aggressive policies against the Second Bank of the United States, the Cherokee Indians, and southern threats of nullification of federal legislation
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826).
American lawyer, author, first secretary
of state, and third president of the United States. Author of the Declaration of Independence and enemy of the Federalists, he was the architect of the Democratic-Republican Party's agrarian ideology.
Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834).
French nobleman who volunteered his services as an aide to George Washington during the Revolution.
Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle (1643-1687)
French explorer. Explored the Great Lakes and Mississippi River valley for France and died trying to establish a settlement at the mouth of the Mississippi in 1687.
Ann Lee (1736-1784).
English religious mystic. Founder of the communitarian sect known as the "Shakers" in 1774.
Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809).
American soldier and explorer. Together
with William Clark, he was commissioned by Thomas Jefferson to survey the Louisiana Purchase and carried out Jefferson's directive with a Corps of Discovery from 1804 to 1806, having reached the Pacific Ocean and returned with the loss of only one member of the expedition.
Francis Cabot Lowell (1775-1817).
American industrialist. Founded the Boston Manufacturing Company and created the first large-scale textile mills in America at Waltham, Massachusetts.
James Madison (1751-1836).
American lawyer, secretary of state, and
fourth president of the United States. Joined with Hamilton and John Jay to argue for ratification of the Constitution by writing The Federalist Papers
but supported Jefferson in the political conflict with federalism. Presided over American involvement in the War of 1812
Horace Mann (1796-1859).
. American lawyer and educator. Designed a
comprehensive renovation of the Massachusetts public education system and created the outline of the modern public school system.
John Marshall (1755-1835).
American lawyer and chief justice of the
U.S. Supreme Court. A Federalist appointed by John Adams to the Supreme Court, his long tenure as chief justice allowed Marshall to establish important principles of judicial review, the supremacy of federal over state authority,
and the protection of the manufacturing economy
Cotton Mather (1663-1728)
American Congregational clergyman. Tireless
promoter of schemes for public welfare and the reconciliation of Calvinism with the New Philosophy
James Monroe (1758-1831).
. American diplomat and fi fth president of the
William Paterson (1745-1806).
American lawyer and politician, born in
Ireland. Architect of the "New Jersey Plan" at the Constitutional Convention in 1787
Charles Cotesworth Pinckney (1746-1825).
American lawyer, judge, diplomat, and politician. One of three American diplomats sent by President Adams to negotiate with the French Directory, only to be confronted by demands for bribes in the XYZ Affair.
Ottawa chieftain. Organized an intertribal offensive against the British at the close of the French and Indian War.
Winfield Scott (1786-1866).
American soldier. Commanded the principal
American field force in the Mexican War, winning successive victories in 1847 that culminated in the capture of Mexico City.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902).
). American feminist. A pioneer of awarding civil equality to women, she organized the first women's rights convention at Seneca Falls, New York, in 1848.
Friedrich Wilhelm Ludolf Gerhard Augustin von Steuben (1730-1794).
Prussian mercenary. Hired in 1777 to train the Continental Army at its winter encampment in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.
Shawnee chieftain. Organized a coalition of Indian
tribes to resist white expansion in the Northwest Territory. After his forces were defeated at Tippecanoe by William Henry Harrison, he fl ed to Canada and fought with the British in the War of 1812. He was killed at the battle of the Thames.
George Washington (1732-1799).
First president of the United States. Commanded the Continental Army in the Revolution, presided over the Constitutional Convention, and became a leading figure of the Federalists.
Daniel Webster (1782-1852).
American lawyer and politician. Involved in the major cases of the Marshall Court, including Gibbons v. Ogden, McCulloch vs. Maryland, and Dartmouth College vs. Woodward. The greatest orator in the Senate, he attacked nullification and disunion in his great Second Reply to Hayne (1830).
Eli Whitney (1765-1825).
American inventor. Inventor of the cotton gin,
which made the commercial growth of cotton feasible, and the manufacturing system of interchangeable parts.
John Winthrop (1588-1649).
English lawyer and Puritan, fi rst governor of
Massachusetts Bay. Led the Puritan exodus to New England in 1630 and founded the town of Boston.
John Witherspoon (1723-1794).
American Presbyterian clergyman and president of Princeton College, born in Scotland. Became president of Princeton in 1768 and served in the Continental Congress. Advocate of Scottish "common sense" philosophy and the necessity of public religion to ensure virtue in a republic.
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