114 terms


A. Philip Randolph
labor and civil rights leader in the 1940s who led the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters; he demanded the FDR create a Fair Employment Practices Commission to investigate job discrimination in war industires. FDR agreed only after he threatened a march on Washington by African Americans
Agricultural Adjustment Administration
New Deal program that paid farmers not to produce crops; it provided farmers with income while reducing crop surpluses and helped stabilize farm production. The Supreme Court declared major parts of this law unconstitutional
Al Smith
first Catholic ever nominated for president; he lost in 1928 because of the nation's prosperity, but his religion, urban background and views on Prohibition cost him votes as well
American Liberty League
a conservative anti-New Deal organization, members included Alfred Smith, JOhn W. DAvis, and the Du Pont Family. IT criticized the "dictatorial" policies of Roosevelt and what it perceived to be his attacks on the free enterprise system.
Atlantic Charter
joint statement issued by President Roosevelt and Britain's Prime Minister Winston Churchill of principals and goals for an Allied victory in World War II; it provided for self-determination for all conquered nations, freedom of seas, economic security, and free trade. Later, it became the embodiment of the United Nation's charter.
Black Cabinet
an informal network of black officeholders in the federal government; led by MAry McLeod Bethune, William Hastie, and Robert Weaver, they pushed for economic and political opportunities for African American in the 1930s and 1940s.
Bonus Army
group of jobless World War I veterans who came to Washington to lobby Congress for immediate payment of money promised to them in 1945; Hoover opposed payment, and when he used the U.S. Army to drive the veterans out of the capital, he was portrayed as cruel and cold-hearted.
Brain Trust
name applied to college professors from Columbia University such as Rexford Tugwell, Adolf Berle, and RAymond Moley who adviseed Roosevelt on economic matters early in the New Deal; this grouop took on the role of an "unofficial Cabinet" in the Roosevelt Administration
Charles Coughlin
Catholic priest who sued his popular radio program to criticize the NEw Deal; he grew increasingly anti-Roosevelt and anti-Semitic until the Catholic Chruch pulled him off the air
Court-packing plan
Roosevelt's proposal in 1937 to "reform" the Supreme Court by appointing an additional justice for every justice over the age of 70.
Fireside chats
Roosevelt's informal radio addressees throughout his presidency; they gave the people a sense of confidence that he understood their problems and was trying to help solve them.
Frances Perkins
Roosevel's secretaryt of labor; the first woman to serve as a federal Cabinet officer, she had a great influence on many New Deal programs, most significantly the Social Security Act.
Francis Townsend
retired physician who proposed an Old Age Revolving Pension Plan to give every retiree over age 60 $200 per month, provided tht the person spend the money each month in order to receive their next payments; the object of Townsend's plan was to help retired workers as well as stimulate the spending in order to boost production and end the Depression
Franklin D. Roosevelt
president; elected four times, he led the country's recovery from the Depression and to victory in World War II. He died in office, however, just weeks before Gernamn's surrender. He is generally considered the greatest president since Abraham Lincoln.
Harry Hopkins
close advisory to Roosevelt and FDR's czar of relief of programs; he headed the Federal Relief Administration, and Works Progress Administration and later undertook diplomatic missions to the USSR
Harry S. Truman
vice-president who became president when FDR died; he was elected on his own in 1948. Truman odered the usedof atomic bombs on Japan to end World War II, set the course of postwar containment of communism in the Cold War, and created a Fair Deal program to carry on the New Deal's domestic agenda
Hawley-Smoot Tariff
raised the duties on imported foreign goods to all-time highs; intended to boost American industry and employment, it actually deepened the Depression when European countries could not repay their loans (World War I war debts) and retaliated against American exports
Herbert Hoover
president who is blamed for the Great Depression; althugh he tried to use government power to bring on recovery, his inflexibility and refusal to give direct relief doomed his programs and his presidency.
camps and shantytowns of unemployed and homeless on the outskirts of major cities during the early days of the Depression; they were symbols of the failure of Hoover's program and the way the nation held him responsible for the hard times
Huey Long
flamboyant Louisiana governor and U.S. senator; he challenged FDR to do more for the poor and needy and proposed a popular "Share-Our-Wealth" program to tax the wealthy in order to provide a guaranteed income for the poor. He was assassinated in1935.
Hundred Days
term applied to the first weeks of the Roosevelt Administration, during Congress passes 13 emergency relief and reform measures that were the backbone of the early New Deal; theseincluded the Civilian Conservation Corp, the Glass Stegal Act (FDIC), Agricultural Adjustment Act, Federal Emergency Relief Act, and the National Industrial Recovery Act.
Lend Lease
program authorizing the president to lend or lease equipment to nations whose defense was deemed vital to the US security; it was designed to help a bankrupt Britain continue fighting the Nazis. By 1945, the United States had extended $50 billion in wartime aid to Britain and the Soviet Union
National Labor Relations Act
created a board that could compel employers to recognize and bargain with unions; this law helped promote the growth of organized labor in the 1930s and for decades thereafter
National Recovery Administration
agency that created a partnership between business and government to fight the Depression; it allowed major industries to fix prices in return for agreeing to fair practice codes, wage and hour standards, and labor's right to organize. Major parts of the law that created the NRA were declared unconstitutional in 1935.
Neutrality Acts
series of laws that provided Americans could not ship weapons, loan money, travel on belligerent ships, extend credit or deliver goods to any belligerent countries; they were high tide of isolationism, and all were repealed between 1939 and 1941
New Deal
Roosevelt's program of domestic reform and relief, the three Rs of Relief, Reform and Recovery did not end the depression, but they gave hope and security and made government more responsive to the people in bad economic times.
Pearl Harbor
United States naval base in Hawaii that was attacked by Japan on Decermber 7, 1941, with serious US losses: 19 ships sunk or destroyed and over 2,000 deaths; the attack brought the United States into World War II.
Reconstruction Finance Corporation
Hoover's economic recovery program that provided government loans to businesses, banks, and railroads; it was "pump priming," but it was too little ($300 million) too late to make any real improvement in the economy
Rugged Individualism
Hoover's philosophy that called on Americans to help each other during the Depression without direct government relief; he feared too much government help would weaken the American character, endanger liberty, and lead to totalitarianism in the United States
Second Front
proposed Anglo-American invasion of France to relieve the Soviets, who were fighting a German invasion of the USSR; originally scheduled for 1942, it was not delivered until D-Day in June 1944. This was a divisive issue in Soviet relations with the United States and Britain during the war and after.
Second New Deal
name given to a series of proposals that FDR requested and Congress passed to reinvigorate the NEw Deal as recovery from the Depression began to lag; they were antibusiness in tone and intent and included the Public Utility Holding Company Act, SOcial Security Act, National Labor Relations Act, and the Wealth Tax
Social Security Act
required both workers and their employer to contribute to a federally run pension fund for retired workers;it also provided federal disability and unemployment assistance. Although benefits were meager, it was the first significant government program to provide for retired, disabled, or unemployed Americans
Bay of Pigs
US supported invasion of Cuba; intended to overthrow Communist dicator Fidel Castro, the operation proved a fiasco, Castri's forces killed 114 of the invaders and took nearly 1200 prisoners. The disaster shook the confidence of the Kennedy administration and encouraged the Soviet Union to become more active in the Americas.
Camp David Accords
agreement reached between the leaders of Israel and Egypt after protracted negotiations brokered by President Carter; Israel surrendered land seized in earlier wars and Egypt recognized Israel as a nations. Despite high hopes, it did not lead to a permanent peace in region, however.
Chiang Kai Shek
ineffective and corrupt leader of China in 1930s and 1940s; he was a wartime ally of the United States, but was unable to stop Communists from seizing power in 1949. Chiang's exile to Taiwan was a major American setback in the early days of the Cold War
Cuban Missile Crisis
a confrontation between the United States and the USSR resulting from a Soviet attempt to place long-range nuclear missiles in Cuba; Kennedy forced the Soviets to remove them with a blockade and the threat of force. The crisis enhanced Kennedy's standing but lead to a Soviet arms buildup.
Dien Bien Phu
French fortress in northern Vietnam that surrendered in 1954 to the Viet Minh; the defeat caused the French to abandon Indochina and set the stage for the Geneva Conference, which divided the region and led to American involvement in South Vietnam
Domino Theory
Eisenhower's metaphor that when one country fell to Communists, its neighbors would then be threatened an dcollapse one after another like a row of dominoes; this belief became a major rationale for US intervention in Vietnam
Douglas MacArthur
World War II hero who led United Nations forces during the Korean War; his outspoken opposition to President Truman's decisions to limit the war cost him his command. He wanted to bomb China, and Truman rejected the idea as too reckless
Dwight Eisenhower
World War II hero and president; his internationalist foreign policy continued Truman's policy of containment but put greater emphasis on military cost-cutting, the threat of nuclear weapons to deter COmmunist aggression, and Central Intelligence Agency activities to halt communism
Fidel Castro
Communist leader of Cuba who led a rebellion against the US-backed dictator who tood power in 1959; President Kennedy tried to overthrow him with the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961 but failed. Castro became closely allied with the Soviet Union, making the Kennedy Administration increasingly concerned about Soviet influence in the Western Hermisphere
George Kennan
state department official who was architect of the containment concept; in his article "The Source of Soviet Conduct" he sid the USSR was historically and ideologically driven to expand and that the United States must practice "vigilant containment" to stop this expansion
Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
an authorization by Congress empowering President Johnson "to take all necessary measures" to protect US forces in Vietnam; it was issued following reported attacks on US destroyers off the Vietnam coast. Congress later regretted this action as the Vietnam War escalated, and questions emerged about the legitimacy of the attacks
Henry Kissinger
advisor to the Presidents Nixon and Ford; he was architect of the Vietnam settlement, the diplomatic opening to China, and detente with the Soviet Union
Ho Chi Minh
communist leader of North Vietnam; he and his Viet Minh/Viet Cong allies fought French and American forces to a standstill in Vietnam. Considered a nationalist by many, others viewed him as an agent of the Soviet Union and China
Iran-Contra Affair
scandal that erupted after the Reagan administration sold weapons to Iran in hopes of freeing American hostages in Lebanon; money from the arms sales was used to aid the Contras (anti-Communist insurgents) in Nicaragua, even though Congress had prohibited this assistance. TAlk of Reagan's impeachment ended when presidential aides took the blame for the illegal activity
Iran Hostage Crisis
incident in which Iranian radicals, with government support, seized 52 Americans from the US embassy and held them for 444 days
Jimmy Carter
president, he aimed for a foreign policy "as good and great as the American people". his highlight was the Camp David Accords; his low point, the Iran Hostage Crisis. Defeated for reelection after one term, he became very successful as an ex-president
John Foster Dulles
Eisenhower's secretary of state, moralistic in his belief that COmmunism was evil and must be confronted with "brinkmanship" (the readiness and willingness to go to war) an d"massive retaliation" (the threat of using nuclear weapons)
Joseph Stalin
ruthless leader of Soviet Union; he industrialized the nation and led it in World War II and the early stages of the Cold War
Lyndon Johnson
president, his escalation of the Vietnam War cost him political support and destroyed his presidency. He increased the number of US troops in Vietnam from 16,000 in 1963 to 540,000 in 1968. After the Tet Offensive, he decided not to seek reelection
Mao Zedong
Communist Chinese Leader who won control of China in 1949 a wary ally of the Soviet Union,he was an implacable foe of the United States until the 1970s.
Marshall Plan
secretary of state george marshall's economic aid program to rebuild war-torn western europe; it amounted to an enlarged version of the truman doctrine, with billions of dollars going to revive european economies and contain communism
massive retaliation
idea that united states should depend on nuclear weapons to stop communism aggression prompted by the frustration of the korean war stalemate and the desire to save money on military budgets, the concept reduced reliance on conventional forces
Ngo Dinh Diem
american ally in south vietnam from 1954 to 1963 his repressive regime caused the communist viet cong to thrive in the south and required increasing american military aid to stop a communist takeover. he was killed in a coup in 1963
Nikita khrushchev
soviet leader he was an aggressive revolutionary who hoped to spread communism into africa asia and latin america. blame for the cuban missile crisis eventually cost him his leadership position in the USSR
North Atlantic treaty organization
military alliance of the united states, ten western European countries and canda it was considered a deterrent to soviet aggression in europe with an attack on one nato nation to beconsidered as an attack on all members
peaceful coexistence
period in soviet american relations marked by less tension and by person diplomacy between khrushchev and eisenhower; the two leaders recongnized that in a nuclear age copetition betwen their nations must be peaceful this that in the cold war was ended by the U2 spy plane incident over the soviet union in 1960
richard nixon
president he exracted the united states from vietnam slowly, recognized communist china, and improved relations with the soviet union. his foreign policy achievements were overshadowed by the watergate scandal
tet offensive
a series of communist attacks on 44 south vietnamese cities; although the viet conf suffered a major defeat the attacks ended the american view that the war was winnable and destroyed the nation's will to escalate the war further
truman doctrine
the announced policy of president truman to provide aid to free nations who faced internal or external threats of a communist takeover; announced in conjunction with a $400 million economic aid package to greece and Turkey, it was successful in helping those countries put down communist guerrilla movements and is considered to be the first us action of the cold war
yalta conference
meeting of roosevelt stalin and winston churchhull to discuss postwar plans and soviet entry into the war against japan near the end of worl war II disagreements over the future of poland sufaced during the red scare of the 1950s, some americans considered the meeting to have been a sellout of the soviets
alger hiss
state department official accused of spying for the soviet union richard nixon became famous for his pursuit of hiss which resulted in a perjury convition and prison for hsis although long seen as a victom of nixons ruthless ambition and the red scare, recent scholarship suggests that hiuss was indeed a soviet agent
barry goldwater
unsuccessful presidential candidate against lyndon johnson he called for dismantling the new deal escalation of the war in vitnam and the status quo on civil rights many see him as the grandfather of the conservative movement of the 1980s
black power
rallying cry for many black militants in the 1960s and 1970s it called for blacks to stand up for their rights to reject integrations to demand political power to seek their roots and to embrace their blackness
brown vs. board of education
supreme court decision that overturned the plesssy vs. ferguson decision led by chief justice earl warren the court ruled that spearate but equal schools for blacks were inherently unequal and thus unconstitutional the decision energized the civil rights movement in the 1950s and the 1960s
civil rights act of 1964
proposed by john kennedy and signed by lyndon johnson it desegregated public accommodations libraries parks and amusements and boradened the powers of federal government to protect individual rights and prevent job discrimination
civil rights act of 1965
sometimes called voting rights act it expanded the federal government's protection of voters and voter regristration it also increased federal authority to investigate voter irregularites and outlawed literacy tests
earl warren
controversial chief justice of the supreme court he led the court in far reaching racial social and political rulings including school desegregation and protecting rights of persons accused of crimes
fair deal
trumans legislative program it was largely an extension of the new deal of the 1930s and truman had little success convincing congress to enact it
federal highway act
largest public works project in united states history eisenhower signed the law which built over 40000 miles ofhighways in the united states at a cost of 25 billion dollars and created the interstate highway system
freedom rides
civil rights campaign of the congress of cracial equality in which protestor traveled by bus through the south the desgregate bus staions white violence against them prompted the kennedy administration to protect them and become more involved in civil rights
george wallace
alabama governor and third party candidate for president in 1968 and 1972 je ram pm a segregation and law and oder platform paralyzed by an attemped assassination in 1972 he never recovered politically
house un-american activities committee
congressional committee formed in the 1930s to investigate percieved trheats to democracy in the 1940s the committee laid foundation for the red scare as it investigated allegatiosn of communist subversion in hollywood and persued alger hiss
hubert humphrey
liberal senator from minnesota and lyndon johnson's vice president who tried to unite the party after the tumultuous 1968 democratic national convention in chicago he narrowly lost the presidency to richard nixon that year
john kennedy
president and the youngest president ever elected as well as the first catholic to serve he had a moderately progressive domestic agenda and a hardline policy against the soviets his administration eneded when lee harvey oswald assassinated him
Joseph mccarthy
junior senator from wisconsin who charged hundreds of americans with working for or aiding the soviet union during the cold war
julius and ethel rosenberg
an engineer and his wife who were accused tried and executed in the earlt 1950s for running an espionage rin in new york city that gave atomic secrets to the soviet union long considered unjustly accused victimsof the red scare recent evidence suggests that julius was indeed a soviet agent
lyndon johnson
president who took over for jennedy and created the great society a reform program unmatched in the twentieth century however his vietnam policy divided the country and his part and he retired from politics in 1969
malcolm x
militant mblack leader associated with the nation of islam he questioned martin luther kinds strategy of nonviolence and called on blacks to make an aggressive defense of their rights he was assassinatied by fellow muslims in 1965
martin luther king jr
america's greatest civil rights leader his nonviolent protests gained national attention and resulted in government protection of afrian american rights he was assassinated in 1968 in memphis tennessee
nation defense education act
law that authorized the use of federal funds to improve the nations elementary and high schools inspired by cold war fears that the united states was falling behind the soviet union in the arms and space race, it was directed at improviig science, math and foreign language education
richard nixon
controversial vice president and president who made his politcal reputation as an aggressive anticommunist crusaderhis presidency ended with his resignation during the watergate scandal
robert kennedy
john kennedys brother who served as attorney general and gradually embraced growing civil rights reform later as senator from new york he made a run for the democratic presidential nomination an assassin endeed his campain
rosa parks
naacp member who initiated the montgomery bus boycott in 1955 when she was arrested for violatign jim crow rules on a bus her action and the long boycott that followed became an icon of the quest for civil rights and focused national attention on boycott leader martin luther king jr
protests by black college students who took seats at "whites only" lunch counters and refused to leave until served
soviet satellite launched the launch set off a panic that the communists were winning the space race and were superior in math and science education led to nation defense education act to improve schools
strom thurmond
democratic governor of south carolina who headed the states rights party he ran for president in 1948 agaisnt truman and his mild civil rights proposals and eventually joined the republican party
taft-hartley act
antilabor law passed over truman's veto it provided a coolinmg off period wherein the president could force striking workers back to work for 80 days it also outlawed closed shops and allwed states to pass right-to-work laws
thomas dewey
twice-defeated republican candidate for president his overconfidence and lackadaisical effort in 1948 allowed truman to overcome his large lead and pull off the greatest political upset in american history
thurgood marshall
leading attorney for naacp in 1940s and 1950s who headed the team in brown vs. board of education case later lyndon johnson appointed him the first black justice on the supreme court
betty friedan
author of the feminine mystique
equal rights amendment
proposed amendment to the us constitution passed by congress and submitted to the states for ratification in 1971 outlawing discrimination based on gender it was at first seen as a great vicotroy by womens rights groups the amendment fell 3 states short of the38 required for ratification
george mcgovern
unsuccessful democratic candidate for president in 1972 he called for immediate withdrawel from vietnam and a guarenteed income for the poor when his vice presidentrial choice got into trouble he waffled in his defense which cost him further with the electorate
gerald ford
presdient who served without being elected either president or vice president appointed vice presdident under the therms of the 25th amendment when spiros agnew resigned he assumed the presidency when nixon resigned
h. r. haldeman
a key aide to president nixon who ordered the cia and fbi not to probe too deeply into the watergat breakin he helped privde money to keep the burglars quiet and was later sentenced to prison for his role in watergate
members of the useful counterculture that dominated many college campuses in the 1960s rather than promoting a political agenda they challenged conventional sexual standards rejected traditional economic values and encouraged the use of drugs
james mccord
one of the plumbers who worked for the white house to plug leaks to the media he committed illegal break ins and serveilances his revelations in 1973 that he was being paid to keep quiet began the unraveling of the watergate coverup
john dean
white house aide who participated in the watergate coverup in a plea bargain he testified that president nixon knew and participated in the cover up many did not believe his testimony until the white house tapes surfaced
john mitchell
nixons first attorney ggeneral and his close friend and adviser many people believe he ordered the watergate breakin heparticpated in the coverup and served nineteen months in prison for his role
kate millett
author of sexual polices
new left
label for the political radicals of the 1960s influenced by old left of the 1930s which had criticized capitalism and supported successed of communism the new left supported civil rights and opposed american foreign policy especially in vietnam
national organization for women
founded by betty friedan and others in 1966 it focused on womens rights in the workplace fought against legal and economic discrimination agianst women and lobbied for the ewual rights amendment
organization of petroleum exporting countries
cartel of oil exporting nations which used oil as a weapon t alter america's middle east policy it organized a serioes of oil boycotts that roiled the united states econdomy throughout the 1970s
reagan revolution
the policies of the first reagan administration which increased defense spending reduced social programs and cut taxes they were based on supply side theory of growing the economy by cutting government interference and taxes
ronald reagan
president who led a coservative movement agaisnt detente with the soviet union and the growth of the fedreal governemnt some people credit him wiht americas vicotory in the cold war while others fault his insensitive social agenda and irresponsible fiscal policies
saturday night massacre
name given to an incident in which nixon ordered attorney general elliot richardson to fire archibald cox the special prosecutor who was relentlessly investigating watergate richarson refused and resigned along with his deputy who also refused to carry out nixons order a subordinate then fired cox the incident created a firestorm of protest in the country
silent majority
label nixon gave to middle class americans who supported him and wanted peace with honor in vietnam
spiro agnew
vice president and a vocal critic of antiwar and civil rights oppononets of the nixon administration
name given to economic condition throughout most of the growth in the 1970sin which prices rose rapidly but without economic growth
students for a democratic society
radical political organization founded by tom hayden and others it set forth its ideals in the port huron statement: government should promote equality fairness and be responsive to people
Warren burger
chief justice of the supreme court although considered more conservative in leadership than earl warren his court uphelp school busing a woman's right to an abortion and ordered nixon to surrender the watergate tapes
watergate scandal
name applied to a series of events that began when the nixon white house tried to plac eillegal phjone taps on democrats in june 1972 the burglars were caught and rather than accept the legal and political fall out nixon and his aides obstructed the investigation which cost him his office and sent several of his top aides to prison
a threeday rock music festival held on a farm in new york's sullivan county