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Arts and Humanities
History of the Americas
8 - The Civil War (All)
Terms in this set (127)
A person who worked to end slavery.
African Methodist Episcopal Church
Usually called the A.M.E. Church, it is the first independent Protestant denomination founded by African Americans.
American Colonization Society
An organization set up by abolitionists who raised money to send freed slaves to Liberia in Africa.
African American abolitionist and publisher of "Appeal," a major newspaper promoting abolition.
A literate, skilled carpenter and leader among free African Americans in Charleston, South Carolina. He was accused of being the ringleader of "the rising," a major slave revolt planned for the city in June 1822. The plan was uncovered before it was carried out and Vesey was executed.
A slave who was placed in charge of making sure other slaves worked.
Inventor of the cotton gin. He hoped it would help end slavery by replacing slaves. Instead, planters used more slaves to grow more cotton because the machine could remove the seeds more quickly at less cost.
The slaves who worked in the fields. This was difficult and exhausting work. The field hands were at the bottom of the social order of slaves.
An escaped slave and prolific orator. His autobiography was widely read.
African Americans who were not slaves. Surprisingly, there were free blacks living throughout the South, especially in Southern cities.
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Abolitionist author of "Uncle Tom's Cabin."
A slave who escaped to the North but returned thirteen times to guide other slaves to freedom. Tubman was nicknamed "Moses" and was the most famous conductor on the Underground Railroad. She also worked for women's rights and was a spy for the North during the Civil War.
Henry Ward Beecher
An American Congregationalist minister social reformer, and speaker, known for his support of the abolition of slavery, and his emphasis on God's love.
A slave who worked in the plantation owner's home. They were usually better dressed and fed than slaves who worked in the fields, and were therefore higher in the social order among slaves.
The first political party in the United States to advocate for the end of slavery. Many of its members later joined the Free-Soil Party and eventually the Republican Party.
An American slave who led a slave rebellion in Virginia on August 21, 1831, that resulted in 60 white deaths and at least 100 black deaths, the largest number of fatalities to occur in one uprising prior to the American Civil War in the Southern United States.
New England Anti-Slavery Society
William Lloyd Garrison's organization. They were the first to advocate for the immediate end of slavery.
Whites hired by plantation owners to manage the slaves.
An abolitionist. He was 1/4 African American. His home was nearly burned down by a mob who disagreed with his activism.
White immigrants from the borderlands of Scotland and Ireland who settled primarily in the Appalachian Mountains. They are famously independent and distrustful of wealthy elites.
An African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist. Truth was born into slavery in Swartekill, Ulster County, New York, but escaped with her infant daughter to freedom in 1826. Her best-known speech became widely known during the Civil War by the title "Ain't I a Woman?"
William Lloyd Garrison
White abolitionist who published "The Liberator."
The system of slavery that developed in the United States in which slaves were considered property.
When a slave owner sets his or her slaves free.
Short for "cotton engine", this machine was invented by Eli Whitney could quickly remove the seeds from raw cotton. Its use allowed plantation owners to greatly increase the production of cotton and drove demand for slaves.
Vice President who became President when Lincoln was assassinated. He was from Tennessee and tried to carry out Lincoln's vision for a forgiving Reconstruction. He was opposed by the Radical Republicans in Congress, impeached but no convicted, and was ineffective.
A nickname for people from the North who came to the South after the war to help with Reconstruction. The name comes from the thick fabric suitcases they carried. In the South, "carpetbagger" is an insult since it refers to an outsider who shows up and tries to tell you how you should live.
Leader of the Radical Republicans in the Senate.
The government organization created to help former slaves transition to free life after the war. They are especially remembered for setting up and running schools.
Ku Klux Klan
A White terrorist organization that was formed immediately after the Civil War to counter Northern reconstruction efforts. They attacked African Americans and Republicans. They began to die out as Reconstruction ended, but later became popular again in the 1920s and were an important political force through the 1960s.
White Democrats in the South who made it was their mission to restore as much of the antebellum social order as possible, including eliminating voting and civil rights for African Americans and establishing the Jim Crow system of segregation.
Rutherford B. Hayes
Republican who became president in 1877.
Democratic Governor of New York. He ran for president in 1876 but lost but did not win as a result of the Compromise of 1877.
When farmers pay to live and grow food on someone else's land.
Leader of the Radical Republicans in the House of Representatives.
A general forgiving of crimes for an entire group of people. After the war, former Confederate soldiers were given amnesty from prosecution for treason.
Forty Acres and a Mule
This is what General Sherman promised all freed slaves. Since he had no power to seize property to give to the slaves, he wasn't able to fulfill his promise.
A rule that stated that if a person's grandfather had voted, they could also. This was a way to allow poor and illiterate Whites who could not pay poll taxes or pass literacy tests to vote while preventing the descendants of former slaves from voting.
A legal process for removing a president or other elected official because of a crime they have committed.
A test that a person had to pass in order to vote. White officials were able to manipulate the results so that African Americans didn't pass the tests and therefore could not vote.
To hang a person without a trial. Lynching was used by the KKK and other White terrorist groups to intimidate African Americans.
When a president or governor forgives a particular person's crime.
A tax a person has to pay in order to vote. It effectively prevents poor people, especially aimed at African Americans, from voting.
When farm workers use land that belongs to someone else and pay by sharing some of what they grow.
A law that gave political, especially voting rights back to former Confederate soldiers.
Civil Rights Bill of 1866
The first major law passed after the Civil War to provide basic rights to all African Americans.
Compromise of 1877
A deal struck between Republicans and Democrats after the close and contested presidential election between Rutherford B. Hayes and Samuel Tilden. Democrats allowed Hayes to become president in return for the end of Reconstruction and the removal of federal troops from the South.
The amendment to the Constitution ratified in 1864 that ended slavery.
The amendment to the Constitution ratified in 1865 that give citizenship to anyone born in the United States, effectively making former slaves citizens.
The amendment to the Constitution ratified in 1869 that guaranteed the right all men regardless of race.
The nickname for a system of laws that enforced segregation. For example, African Americans had separate schools, rode in the backs of busses, could not drink from White drinking fountains, and could not eat in restaurants or stay in hotels, etc.
Lodge Force Bills
Proposed by Henry Cabot Lodge, these laws provided federal overseers to make sure that African Americans could vote. Later, however, they were rescinded and the Jim Crow system was put into effect.
The period immediately after the Civil War ended when reconstruction was based on Lincoln and especially President Andrew Johnson's lenient and forgiving policies.
The later period of reconstruction which was led by the Radical Republicans in Congress rather than by President Andrew Johnson.
Sometimes called the Peace Democrats, they were Northerners who wanted to end the war and make a peace treaty that allowed the South to secede.
John Wilkes Booth
An actor from Virginia who assassinated President Lincoln in the vain hope that it might inspire the South to continue fighting.
A person who gives speeches.
A terrible leader.
To pay for something that is lost or taken away.
Beliefs about what is important or true.
I idea that the South was right to secede and should have maintained slavery and that the fight for Southern independence should go on.
Sic Semper Tyrannis
The motto of the State of Virginia. It is Latin for "Thus Always to Tyrants." John Wilkes Booth shouted it after assassinating President Lincoln.
Writ of Habeas Corpus
A legal term that means "Show me the Body." It means that the government cannot accuse you of a crime and then hold you in jail indefinitely before giving you a trial.
President Lincoln's official order freeing all slaves in the rebelling territories (but not in the Border States that had remained in the Union).
Lincoln's famous speech in 1863 in which he outlined the purpose of the war.
Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address
Lincoln's speech in 1865 in which he outlined his beliefs about the war and his view of Reconstruction.
The theater in Washington, DC where President Lincoln was assassinated.
The period of time from the end of the Civil War in 1865 until 1877 when the victorious North tried to rebuild the South and deal with the problems the war created, including passing legislation related to former slaves.
General who led the Union army at the start of the war. He infuriated Lincoln with his unwillingness to lead his troops into battle. Eventually Lincoln fired him.
Army of the Potomac
The Union army that did most of the fighting in Virginia against General Lee. It was named after the Potomac River that separates Maryland and Virginia.
American Red Cross
An organization that provides free healthcare and support to soldiers and people affected by war or disaster. It was founded by Clara Barton during the Civil War.
Nurse and founder of the American Red Cross.
Also called Copperheads, they were Democrats in the North who wanted to end the war and make peace with the South.
Ulysses S. Grant
General who led the Union armies at the end of the war. He won the Battle of Vicksburg and Lincoln promoted him to commander of all of the Union Armies. He accepted Lee's surrender at the end of the war and later was elected president.
William Tecumseh Sherman
Northern general who led his army through the South destroying everything he could - farms, railroads, etc. - in an effort to prevent the South from having the means of waging war.
Using a navy to prevent ships from entering or exiting a port.
A process in which the government forces people to join the military.
When the prices of good increase over time.
The North's strategy to blockade Southern ports to prevent trade and resupply.
High Tide of the Confederacy
A term used to describe the Battle of Gettysburg, and especially Pickett's Charge. It was the closest the South ever came to military victory in the war. Although far from over, after the battle the war turned in the North's favor.
Terms of Surrender
The agreement made by two armies or nations to formally end a war.
The Confederate States of America. The slave-holding states from the South that seceded.
The United States of America. The North including the four border states which had slaves but did not secede.
Appomattox Court House
The small town in Virginia where Lee surrendered to Grant.
The capital city of Virginia and of the Confederacy.
First Battle of Bull Run
The first major battle between the armies of the North and South. It ended in a victory for the South and demonstrated that neither side would have an easy victory.
Riots that happened in 1863 in major cities of the North, especially in New York City when the government enforced conscription into the army. They demonstrated that the war was not universally popular.
Battle of Gettysburg
The turning point battle of the war. Lee led his army into Pennsylvania hoping to force the North to give up, but lost the battle.
Battle of Vicksburg
A major victory for the Union army in the South. Vicksburg was a city along the Mississippi River. After it fell to the North, the Union controlled shipping on the river and was able to split the South in two.
Riots that occurred in the major cities of the South, especially led by women when the blockade of Southern ports by the Union navy prevented enough food from being imported. These were also sometimes called the Bread Riots.
Lee's final attack on the third day of the Battle of Gettysburg. Often called the High Tide of the Confederacy, it was a disaster for the South, ending in defeat and the loss of thousands of troops.
Sherman's March to the Sea
In 1864 General Sherman led his Union army through Georgia destroying everything he could. He started in Atlanta and his destination was the city of Savannah on the coast. He became of a hero of the North and villain across the South.
Siege of Petersburg
The long attack on the City of Petersburg south of Richmond, Virginia. It was devastating for both armies, but due to the South's inability to replace lost soldiers, proved to be a death blow to Lee's army.
Constitutional Union Party
A political party that existed just before the start of the Civil War. They argued simply that the nation should stay together and ignore the question of slavery. They did not win, but their candidate John Bell won some votes in the election of 1860.
A slave who sued for his freedom after being taken into the North. His case went all the way to the Supreme Court where he lost.
President of the Confederacy. Usually regarded as an ineffective wartime leader.
A hero who dies for a cause.
Senator from South Carolina who angrily beat Charles Sumner on the floor of the Senate with his cane. He became a hero in the South.
Robert E. Lee
Brilliant general from Virginia who led the assault on John Brown at Harper's Ferry and later led the Confederate armies during the Civil War. His surrender to Ulysses S. Grant ended the war.
The Supreme Court Chief Justice who wrote the Dred Scott decision.
A House Divided
This was a metaphor that Abraham Lincoln articulated during the Lincoln-Douglas Debates. He said that the nation was like a house that could not stand if it was divided. He predicted that the country would either become all slave, or all free, but could not continue with slavery allowed in only the South.
Named for the town of Freeport, Illinois where Stephen Douglas articulated it in one of the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, the Freeport Doctrine was Douglas's assertion that despite the Dred Scott decision, the people of new territories could still ban slavery on their own. His argument for popular sovereignty angered Democrats in the South and helped lead to a split in the party.
The idea that the residents of each territory should decide for themselves if they would join the Union as a free or slave state. Stephen Douglas supported this idea and it was the heart of the Kansas-Nebraska Act.
The Better Angels of our Nature
A famous image invoked by President Lincoln at his first inaugural address when he called upon the nation to avoid war.
Dred Scott v. Sanford
A landmark Supreme Court case in 1857 in which Chief Justice Roger Taney wrote that the federal government did not have the power to regulate slavery, effectively allowing slavery in all states, North and South, as well as the territories. The outcome of the case infuriated abolitionists who saw it as a major expansion of the power of slave owners over the federal government.
A series of famous debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas during their campaign for the open Illinois senate seat in 1858. Lincoln, a Republican, and Douglas a Democrat drew national attention as they debated the future of slavery. Despite losing the election, the debates catapulted Lincoln to widespread fame and respect.
Fort in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina. The Union controlled the fort at the start of the Civil War, and Confederate troops bombarded and took control of the fort. It was the first military action of the war.
A small town in West Virginia and site of the federal arsenal that John Brown attacked.
A nickname given to a group of pro-slavery men who went to Kansas to try to terrorize the people there who were opposed to slavery.
Senator from Massachusetts. He was opposed to slavery but more than anything worked to preserve the Union and prevent Southern secession. Along with Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun he helped broker the Compromise of 1850.
Free Soil Party
A political party that existed during the 1850s. They believed that slavery should not be permitted in the territories of the West saying, "Free Men on Free Soil." Most Free Soilers eventually joined the Republican Party.
Congressman from Kentucky who ran many times but never won the presidency. He is remembered as one of the three great dealmakers of the early 1800s who helped prevent civil war over slavery by negotiating the Missouri Compromise and the Compromise of 1850.
A fierce abolitionist who moved to Kansas with his family. He led the Pottawatomie Creek Massacre and later led an attack on the federal arsenal at Harper's Ferry in the hope of leading a slave rebellion that would bring about the end of slavery. He was hated by Southerners but became a martyr for the abolitionist cause.
John C. Calhoun
Senator from South Carolina. In the decades before the Civil War he was the strongest voice for states' rights and defender of slavery. Along with Henry Clay and Daniel Webster he helped broker the Compromise of 1850.
A political party founded in the 1850s which initially opposed the expansion of slavery into the territories of the West. Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president. Eventually the party worked to end slavery altogether.
Senator from Illinois. He was opposed to slavery but wanted to preserve the Union. He believed that the best way was to let the people of each new state decide for themselves if slavery would be permitted. This idea, popular sovereignty is most strongly associated with Douglas.
When a state or group of states leaves separates themselves from the country to form a new nation.
A phrase Northerners used to describe the political power Southern states had in Congress.
A law that said that when the new states of Kansas and Nebraska joined the Union, the people of those states of vote to decide if they would be slave states or free states. The law proposed by Stephen Douglass and embraced his idea of popular sovereignty as a way to avoid a political fight in Congress.
An agreement brokered by Henry Clay in 1820 to maintain the balance of slave and free states in the Senate. Missouri entered the Union as a slave state and Maine as a free state.
An addition to the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo that ended the Mexican American War proposed by David Wilmot. It stated that slavery would not be permitted in the new territories taken from Mexico, but was not adopted.
The line of latitude that was the dividing line between the free and slave states of the west. The Missouri Compromise had banned slavery north of the line, but the Compromise of 1850 ended that ban by allowing Missouri to become a slave state. The line is the southern border of Missouri.
The name given to the time period of fighting between pro and anti-slavery forces in Kansas before it was admitted as a state.
Pottawatomie Creek Massacre
An attack by John Brown and his abolitionist followers on the town of Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas. They killed five people in revenge for the Sack of Lawrence. The events were part of the era known as Bleeding Kansas.
Sack of Lawrence
The town of Lawrence, Kansas was the center of the anti-slavery movement in that territory. In 1856 a group of pro-slavery men attacked and burned the town. The event was part of the era known as Bleeding Kansas.
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