American History 1 – Final Exam Review (MSL)

Christopher Columbus
Italian navigator who discovered the New World in the service of Spain while looking for a route to China (1451-1506)
Amerigo Vespucci
(1454-1521, Italian) America was named after him; first to realize that the Americas were a different continent that Asia
Ferdinand Magellan
3 year voyage around the world where he discovered the straits at the southern tip of South America, he died during the voyage but the mission was a success.
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Conquistadors
Early-sixteenth-century Spanish adventurers who conquered Mexico, Central America, and Peru.
Treaty of Tordesillas
A 1494 agreement authorized by the pope, dividing all discoveries in the New World between Spain & Portugal.
Columbian Exchange
The exchange of plants, animals, diseases, and technologies between the Americas and the rest of the world following Columbus’s voyages.
St. Augustine
A Spanish outpost in Florida, established in 1565, it became the first European town in the present-day United States.
Roanoke
The First English attempt to settle in the New World known as “The Lost Colony” established in 1587 by the English but disappeared leaving a great mystery.
Sir Walter Raleigh
English socialite and finance man of “The Lost Colony” an English knight and nobleman. Never came to America.
Virginia Dare
Born in 1857, she was first child of English parents born in America. She disappeared with other members of the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island in Virginia.
Virginia company
A group of London investors who sent ships to Chesapeake Bay in 1607 to establish the Jamestown Colony.
Jamestown
1st permanent English settlement in North America, was established in 1607 on the James River in present day Virginia near the Chesapeake Bay.
John Smith
1580-1631 An English colonist who helped create the Jamestown Colony. He made an agreement with the Powhatan Indians for food. He encouraged settlers to work harder and build better housing.
Pocahontas
A Powhatan girl and princess (the daughter of the Powhatan) who befriended the English at Jamestown and is said to have saved Captain John Smith’s life (1595-1617).
John Rolfe
An English settler at Jamestown (married Pocahontas) who discovered how to successfully grow tobacco in Virginia and cure it for export, which made Virginia an economically successful colony.
House of Burgesses
In 1619 the Virginians created the first legislative body in colonial America. Later other colonies would adopt similar legislatures.
Headright System
The Virginia Company’s system in which settlers and the family members who came with them each received 50 acres of land
Indentured Servant
Colonists who received free passage to North America in exchange for working without pay for a certain number of years.
Bacon’s Rebellion
A rebellion against the Virginia government (set fire to Jamestown) led by a back country farmer to attack Native Americans in an attempt to gain Indian land.
Puritans
A religious group who wanted to reform the Church of England. They came to America in 1630s following the Pilgrims to Plymouth for religious freedom and settled Massachusetts Bay.
Plymouth
Colony settled by the Pilgrims in 1620 which eventually merged with the Massachusetts Bay colony.
Mayflower Compact
1620 – The first agreement for self-government in America. It was signed by the 41 men on the Mayflower and set up a government for the Plymouth colony.
William Bradford
The second governor of the Plymouth colony, 1621-1657. He developed private land ownership and helped colonists get out of debt. He helped the colony survive droughts, crop failures, and Indian attacks.
John Winthrop
Governor of Massachusetts Bay (1588-1649) who was instrumental in forming the colony’s government and envisioned the colony, centered in present-day Boston.
Roger Williams
A dissenter who clashed with the Massachusetts Puritans over separation of church and state and was banished in 1636, after which he founded the colony of Rhode Island.
Anne Hutchinson
A dissenter in Massachusetts Bay who preached the idea that God communicated directly to individuals instead of through the church elder, was banished by the “leadership of the colony” (men) and helped to settle Rhode Island.
Pequot War
The Mass. Bay colonists wanted to claim present day Connecticut for themselves but it belonged to a local tribe. The colonists burned down their village and killed 400 .
King Philip’s War
1675 – A series of battles in New Hampshire between the colonists and the Wompanoags, led by a chief known as King Philip. The Colonists won and opened up land for settlement.
Henry Hudson
An English explorer who explored for the Dutch and the English. He claimed the Hudson River around present day New York. He also had the Hudson Bay named for him. Was abandoned by his crew and disappeared.
New Amsterdam
Founded by the Dutch for trade and furs and became an English Colony in 1664, renamed “New York” in honor of the Duke of York.
Thomas Hooker
A Puritan minister who led about 100 settlers from Massachusetts Bay to Connecticut because he believed the governor was too autocratic. He wanted to set up a colony in Connecticut with strict limits on government.
Fundamental Orders of Connecticut
Set up a unified government for the towns of Connecticut. First constitution written in America.
William Penn
A Quaker that founded Pennsylvania in 1682 to establish a place where his people and others could live in peace and be free from persecution.
George Calvert
An English noble who was Catholic but also loyal to the crown; he received Maryland as a refuge for Catholics and all other religions, he is also known as the first Lord Baltimore.
Toleration Act
A 1689 law passed by the English Parliament granting “some” religious freedoms to dissenting Protestants who had broken away from the Anglican Church. Considered an early form of religious toleration.
James Oglethorpe
Founder of the Georgia colony who ran a tightly-disciplined, military-like colony. Slaves, alcohol, and Catholicism were forbidden in his colony. Many colonists felt that Oglethorpe acted like a dictator.
Mercantilism
An national economic policy under which nations sought to increase their wealth and power by obtaining large amounts of gold and silver and by selling more goods than they bought, and establishing colonies.
Navigation Acts
A series of British laws which taxed goods imported by the colonies because Britain needed to pay off debts, and to pay the costs of maintaining a standing army in the colonies.
Salutary Neglect
British colonial policy during the reigns of George I and George II. Relaxed supervision colonial affairs, contributed significantly to the rise of American self government.
John Peter Zenger
Journalist who questioned the policies of the governor of New York in the 1700’s. He was jailed; he sued, and this court case was the basis for our freedom of speech and press. He was found not guilty.
Cash Crops
Crops grown in America, such as tobacco, sugar, and cotton, raised in large quantities in order to be sold for profit.
Triangular Trade
A three way system of trade during 1600-1800s Africa sent slaves to America, America sent Raw Materials to Europe, and Europe sent Guns and Rum to Africa.
Middle Passage
A horrific voyage that brought enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean to North America, South America and the West Indies.
Enlightenment
18th century movement led by French intellectuals who advocated reason as the universal source of knowledge and truth, would lead many in America to question the necessity of British rule.
John Locke
A 17th century English philosopher who opposed the Divine Right of Kings and who asserted that people have a natural right to life, liberty, and property.
Social Contract
A voluntary agreement among individuals to secure their rights and welfare by creating a government and abiding by its rules.
Baron de Montesquieu
A french philosopher who challenged idea of “Divine Right of Kings” and favored separation of powers, or division of the power of government into separate branches.
Abigail Adams
Wife of John Adams who wrote letters to her husband describing life on the home-front. She also urged her husband to consider the “rights of women” while creating the new American government.
Salem Witch Trials
1629 outbreak of witchcraft accusations in Puritan Massachusetts marked by an atmosphere of fear, hysteria, stress, trials and executions.
Great Awakening
A religious movement in 1730’s colonial America characterized by emotional preaching (Jonathan Edwards & George Whitefield). The first cultural movement to unite the Thirteen Colonies. Associated with the democratization of religion.
Jonathan Edwards
American theologian whose sermons and writings stimulated a period of renewed interest in religion in America during the “Great Awakening”.
George Whitfield
English evangelical preacher of the Great Awakening whose charismatic style attracted huge crowds during his preaching tours of colonies.
French and Indian War
(1754-1763) War fought in the colonies between the English and the French for possession of the Ohio Valley area. The English won. Considered an early cause of the American Revolution.
Albany Plan of Union
A plan proposed by Benjamin Franklin in 1754 to unite the 13 colonies for trade, military, and other purposes; the plan was turned down by the colonies and the British Crown. Early attempt to unite the colonies.
Battle of Quebec
A British victory over French forces in 1759 on the outskirts of Quebec. The surrender of Quebec marked the beginning of the end of French rule in North America.
Treaty of Paris 1763
This treaty ended the French and Indian War, France lost Canada, land east of the Mississippi, to British, New Orleans and west of Mississippi to Spain.
Proclamation of 1763
A proclamation from the British government which forbade British colonists from settling west of the Appalachian Mountains. Colonists resented this law and was an early cause of the Revolution.
Writs of Assistance
Part of the Townshend Acts which said that the customs officers could inspect a ship’s cargo without giving a reason. Colonists protested that the Writs violated their rights as British citizens. This is why we have search warrant laws today.
Sugar Act
(1764) British deeply in debt partly due to French & Indian War. English Parliament placed a tariff on sugar, coffee, wines, and molasses. Colonists avoided the tax by smuggling and by bribing tax collectors.
James Otis
A colonial lawyer who defended (usually for free) colonial merchants who were accused of smuggling. Argued against the writs of assistance and the Stamp Act.
No Taxation Without Representation
A famous saying prior to and during the Revolution that reflected the colonists’ belief that they should not be taxed because they had no direct representatives in Parliament.
Stamp Act
1765, A tax that the British Parliament placed on paper, newspapers, and official documents sold in the American Colonies.
Quartering Act
A 1765 law that Required the colonists to provide food, lodging, and supplies for the British troops stationed in the colonies.
Sons of Liberty
A radical political organization for colonial independence which formed in 1765 after the passage of the Stamp Act. They incited riots and burned the customs houses where the stamped British paper was kept.
Samuel Adams
American Revolutionary leader and patriot, Founder of the Sons of Liberty and one of the most vocal patriots for Independence.
John Adams
American revolutionary figure who later became George Washington’s Vice President and 2nd President of the United States.
Townshend Act
A set of laws passed by Parliament in 1767, which placed taxes on imported materials such as glass, lead, paint, paper, and tea. Led to outrage and tons of people boycotted British goods.
Boston Massacre
An urban riot in Boston where five civilians who were killed by British soldiers; this was depicted as a brutal slaughter in colonial newspapers for propaganda purposes.
Boston Tea Party
A 1773 protest against British taxes in which Boston colonists disguised as Mohawks dumped valuable tea into Boston Harbor.
Intolerable Act
A set of laws passed by the British parliament in 1774 to punish Boston after the Tea Party; closed the harbor, created a police state.
Committees of Correspondence
A network of communication set up in the American colonies to inform colonists of ways that Britain threatened colonial rights and to hold protests.
Minutemen
Member of a militia during the American Revolution who could be ready to fight in sixty seconds.
1st Continental Congress
In 1774 12 delegates met in Philadelphia, decided to boycott British goods, when they met for the second time six months later the killing had begun.
Lexington and Concord
“The Shot Heard Round the World”- The first battle of the Revolution in which British general Thomas Gage went after the stockpiled weapons of the colonists in Concord, Massachusetts.
2nd Continental Congress
Congress of American leaders which first met in 1775, declared independence in 1776, and helped lead the United States during the Revolution.
Bunker Hill
(1775) Fought on the outskirts of Boston on Breed’s Hill. The battle ended in the colonial militia’s retreat, though at a heavy loss to the British.
Olive Branch Petition
An offer of peace sent by the Second Continental Congress to King George III which he turned down.
Common Sense
A pamphlet written by Thomas Paine in 1776 to convince the colonists that it was time to become independent.
Thomas Paine
Revolutionary leader who wrote the pamphlet “Common Sense” (1776) arguing for American independence from Britain. In England he published “The Rights of Man”.
Declaration of Independence
A statement, issued by the Second Continental Congress on July 4th, 1776, explaining why the colonies wanted independence from Britain.
Loyalists
American colonists who remained loyal to Britain and opposed the war for independence.
Thomas Jefferson
Wrote the Declaration of Independence, helped organize the Republican party in the 1790s, and became the third president of the United States.
Tories
A person who supported the British cause in the American Revolution; a loyalist
Patriots
American colonists who were determined to fight the British until American independence was won.
Trenton
A battle of the Revolutionary War where Continental troops under the command of George Washington surprised British and Hessian troops at Trenton, New Jersey. Washington and his men crossed the icy Delaware River on Christmas Day, 1776
Saratoga
A battle that took place along the Hudson River in New York where the Continental Army defeated the British and is considered to be the turning point of the war.
Valley Forge
Place where Washington’s army spent the winter of 1777-1778, a 4th of troops died here from disease and malnutrition, Steuben comes and trains troops. Washington’s men leave the winter encampment a valuable fighting force.
Marquis de Layfayette
French nobleman and soldier who spent the winter at Valley Forge; trusted aide to Washington and instrumental in obtaining financing for the war.
Charles Cornwallis
A British general, he lost to Nathaniel Green in the southern campaign. He was humiliated by his defeat in the colonies. He finally lost at the Battle of Yorktown, commonly known as the end of the war, in 1781.
Guilford Courthouse
A major battle near Greensboro, North Carolina that is won by the British, but Cornwallis withdraws to Virginia and ultimately to Yorktown because of his losses.
Yorktown
The last battle of the Revolution which took place in 1781. Cornwallis is defeated by Washington and the colonial militias. Colonists won because British were surrounded and they surrendered. Parliament votes to end the war.
Treaty of Paris 1783
Treaty Between England and the Colonies , formally ended the American Revolutionary War and recognized independence for the Americans.
Virginia Statute of Religious Freedoms
Written by Thomas Jefferson in 1779, this statute outlawed an established church and called for separation of Church and State in government.
Articles of Confederation
The first Constitution of the U.S. 1781-1788. Had many weaknesses including-no executive, no judicial, no power to tax, no power to regulate trade among others.
Unicameral Legislature
A legislature with only one legislative chamber, as opposed to a bicameral legislature, such as the U.S. Congress. Today, Nebraska is the only state in the Union with a unicameral legislature.
Land Ordinance
A law that divided much of the United States into a system of townships to facilitate the sale of land to settlers.
North West Ordinance
Law passed by Congress in 1787 that specified how western lands would be governed.
Shay’s Rebellion
A 1787 rebellion in which ex-Revolutionary War soldiers attempted to prevent foreclosures of farms as a result of high interest rates and taxes, also highlighted the weakness of the Articles of Confederation.
Constitutional Convention
A meeting held in Philadelphia in 1787 that produced a new constitution for the United States of America. This is the document we currently call “The Constitution”.
Virginia Plan
The plan for government proposed in 1787 at the Constitutional Convention in which the national government would have supreme power and a legislative branch would have two houses with representation determined by state population.
James Madison
“Father of the Constitution,” Federalist leader, and fourth President of the United States.
New Jersey Plan
A constitutional proposal that would have given each state one vote in a the new congress.
The Great Compromise
A state’s representation in the House of Representatives would be based on population; Two senators for each state; all bills would originate in the house; direct taxes on states were to be assessed according to population
3/5ths Compromise
A compromise between Southern and Northern states reached during the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 in which three-fifths of the population of slaves would be counted for voting purposes.
Federalists
A term used to describe supporters of the Constitution plan during ratification debates in state legislatures.
Anti-Federalists
A group who opposed the ratification of the Constitution in 1787. They opposed a strong central government (tyranny) and supported states’ rights.
Federalist Papers
A collection of 85 articles written by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison under the name “Publius” to defend the Constitution in detail.
John Jay
1st Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, negotiated with British for Washington
Alexander Hamilton
Washington’s Secretary of the Treasury. He advocated for the creation of a national bank, assumption of state debts by the federal government, and a tariff system to pay off the national debt. He was killed in a duel with Aaron Burr.
Bill of Rights
The Anti-Federalists failed to block the ratification of the Constitution, but they did ensure that the Bill of Rights would be created to protect individuals from government interference and possible tyranny.
Separation of Powers
Constitutional division of powers among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, with the legislative branch making laws, the executive branch applying and enforcing the law, and the judiciary branch interpreting the law.
Federalism
A system in which power is divided between the national (federal) and the state governments.
Limited Government
A principle of constitutional government whereby a government’s powers are defined and limited by a constitution.
Popular Sovereignty
A principle of democracy in which political authority rests ultimately in the hands of the people.
Preamble
A preliminary introduction to “The Constitution” which explains its purpose, and the reason one should accept it over the Articles of Confederation.
Enumerated Powers
Powers specifically given to Congress in the Constitution; including the power to collect taxes, coin money, regulate foreign and interstate commerce, and declare war.
Delegated Powers
Powers given only to the national government under Federalism. Ex. declare war, print money, raise an army, regulate foreign and interstate trade.
Expressed Powers
Those delegated powers of the National Government that are spelled out, expressly, in the Constitution; also called the “enumerated powers”
Concurrent Powers
Powers held jointly by the national and state governments.
Reserved Powers
Powers not specifically granted to the federal government or denied to the states belong to the states and the people
Implied Powers
Powers of the government found in the constitution in unwritten forms but assumed.
Necessary and Proper Clause
Constitutional clause that gives congress the power to make all laws “necessary and proper” for executing its powers. Known as the “Elastic Clause”
Amendment
A new provision or change in the Constitution that has been ratified by the states.
Judicial Review
The court system especially the supreme court is given the power to determine the constitutionality of laws.
George Washington
1st President of the United States, also commanding general of the United States army during the American Revolutionary war.
Presidential Cabinet
A group of people that advise the President of the United States and run the Executive Departments.
Judiciary Act
A 1789 law passed by the first Congress to establish (create) the federal court system. The act determined the organization and jurisdiction of U.S. courts.
National Bank
The “Bank of the United States,” part of Hamilton’s economic plan that provided a safe storage for government funds, in the collection of taxes etc… It’s constitutionality was questioned.
National Debt
The total amount of money the federal government has borrowed to finance deficit spending over the years.
Neutrality
A refusal to take part in a war between other nations or pick a side to support.
Whiskey Rebellion
In 1794, Pennsylvania distillers opposed and fought the 1791 excise tax on whiskey; Washington aggressively sent in troops to crush the rebellion.
Jay’s Treaty
An agreement negotiated between U.S. and Britain over northwestern lands, British seizure of U.S. ships, and U.S. debts owed to British
Pinkney’s Treaty
A treaty between the US and Spain where Spain gave up all claims to land east of the Mississippi R. and agreed to open up the river to traffic, and to allow U.S. traders to use the port of New Orleans.
Treaty of Greenville
Gave America all of Ohio after General Mad Anthony Wayne battled and defeated the Indians at the Battle of Fallen Timbers in 1795.
Battle of Fallen Timbers
The U.S. Army defeated Native Americans led by Shawnee Chief Blue Jacket and ended Native American hopes of keeping their land that lay north of the Ohio River.
Washington’s Farewell Address
President Washington’s warning to the country: no political parties, no involvement in foreign affairs, no unchristian presidents, be careful w/credit; George Washington.
Democratic Republicans
Political party Led by Thomas Jefferson, believed people should have political power emphasized agriculture, strict interpretation of the Constitution and opposed a national bank.
XYZ Affair
A 1797 French attempt to bribe the United States by demanding money before discussing French seizure of neutral American ships
Convention of 1800
Agreement which freed America from its alliance with France, forgave French $20 million in damages and resulted in Adams’ losing a second term as president.
Alien and Sedition Acts
1798 series of acts that criminalized speech that was derisive to the government. Later ruled unconstitutional.
Kentucky & Virginia Resolutions
Kentucky & Virginia Resolution (written by Jefferson & Madison), asked states to nullify (ignore) the Sedition and Alien Acts.
Nullification
The doctrine that a state can declare null and void a federal law that, in the state’s opinion, violates the Constitution.
Election of 1800
A presidential election tie between Aaron Burr and Thomas Jefferson which Jefferson won after 36 ballots when Alexander Hamilton persuaded three members of the House to vote for Jefferson. Led to the 12th amendment and Burr killing Hamilton in a duel.
Economic Laissez-Faire
Idea that government should play as small a role as possible in economic affairs means hands off…
Midnight Judges
The 16 judges that were added by the Judiciary Act of 1801 that were called this because Adams signed their appointments late on the last day of his administration.
Marbury vs. Madison
Chief Justice John Marshall’s landmark supreme court case that established the principle of judicial review.
John Marshall
U.S. Chief Justice of the Supreme Court who oversaw over 1000 decisions, including Marbury v Madison and McCulloch v. Maryland.
Louisiana Purchase
Territory in the Western United States purchased from France in 1803 for $15 million.
Lewis and Clark
Two military officers and explorers sent by President Jefferson to explore the Louisiana Purchase and see what it was we had bought.
Sacajawea
Native american woman and mother who served as a guide an interpreter for the Lewis and Clark expedition.
Tecumseh
A Shawnee chief who tried to unite Native American tribes in the Ohio River Valley area, but was killed in battle.
Battle of Tippecanoe
A battle between Americans and Native Americans in the West where Tecumseh and the Prophet were defeated by Governor William Henry Harrison who would one day be President.
William Henry Harrison
9th president of the U.S. and hero of the Battle of Tippecanoe. Nominated as the Whig’s presidential candidate for 1840 but died shortly after the inauguration.
Impressment
British practice of kidnapping American sailors and forcing them into military service for England.
Embargo Act
An American law passed in 1807 that made it illegal to trade with either British or France as long as they continued to harm American sailing vessels.
War Hawks
U.S. Congressman from the South and West who pushed for war against the British leading up to the War of 1812.
War of 1812
A three year conflict between the United States and England over the fairness of free trade with European countries especially France.
Hartford Convention
A convention of New England merchants who opposed the embargo, other trade restriction, and in general the War of 1812. Secession from the Union was considered.
Treaty of Ghent
Agreement signed in December of 1814 ending The War of 1812 and restoring the status quo between the U.S. and England.
Battle of New Orleans
A battle during the War of 1812 where the British army attempted to take New Orleans but were defeated by Jackson, and his soldiers giving him an enormous popularity boost.
McCullough v. Maryland
1819 ruling by the Supreme Court stating that Maryland could not tax the local Bank of the United States branch because it was the property of the Federal Government.
Gibbons v Ogden
A supreme court ruling regulating interstate commerce as a power reserved to the federal government.
Era of Good Feelings
The name given to the era of President Monroe’s two terms, a period of strong nationalism, economic growth, and territorial expansion.
49th Parallel
The Oregon Treaty of 1846 established the U.S./Canadian border along this parallel.
Adams-Onis Treaty
An 1819 treaty agreement in which Spain gave up all of Florida to the United States.
Monroe Doctrine
An 1823 declaration by President Monroe that Europe should not interfere in the affairs of the Western Hemisphere.
Missouri Compromise
“Compromise of 1820” over the issue of slavery in Missouri. It was decided that Missouri would enter the Union as a slave state and Maine would enter as a free state.
Abolitionist
A reformer who wanted to end slavery once and for all in the United States.
Industrial Revolution
The time period from 1750-1850 which is characterized by a series of improvements in industrial technology that transformed the process of manufacturing goods.
Eli Whitney
An American inventor who developed the cotton gin. Also contributed to the concept of interchangeable parts that were exactly alike and easily assembled.
Lowell System
Industrial movement developed in textile mills in the 1820s where workers usually young single farm girls, lived and worked for low pay.
Concept of Emancipation
A desire to end slavery such as the abolition movement that many Americans struggled for.
Cotton Gin
A machine for cleaning the seeds from cotton fibers, invented by Eli Whitney in 1793.
Sectionalism
Different parts of the country developing unique and separate cultures from the others such as the North, South and West. Led to conflict between the North and the South.
American System
An economic program advanced by Henry Clay that included support for a national bank, high tariffs, internal improvements, and emphasizing a strong role for federal government in the economy.
Henry Clay
American politician often called “The Great Compromiser” who developed the American System.
John C. Calhoun
South Carolina Senator, and Andrew Jackson’s vice president who was an advocate for state’s rights, limited government, and nullification.
Conestoga Wagon
A large “Covered Wagon” with broad wheels and a canvas top used by pioneers who could afford one when moving out west.
Erie Canal
An artificial waterway or river, connecting the Hudson river at Albany with Lake Erie at Buffalo.
John Quincy Adams
Son of President John Adams and the secretary of state to James Monroe. Andrew Jackson accused him of corruption when defeated by Adams in the 1824 election. He was the sixth president of the United States and later became a member of Congress.
Andrew Jackson
The seventh President of the United States elected in 1828, who as a general in the War of 1812 defeated the British at New Orleans in 1815. As president he opposed the Bank of America, objected to the right of individual states to nullify disagreeable federal laws, kicked the Cherokee off their land sending them on the “Trail of Tears” and increased the power of the Presidential Office.
The Corrupt Bargain
Refers to the presidential election of 1824 in which Henry Clay, the Speaker of the House, convinced the House of Representatives to elect John Quincy Adams instead of Jackson.
Democratic Party
A political party formed by supporters of Andrew Jackson after the presidential election of 1824 which they felt had been a corrupt, undemocratic scandal.
Common Man
A man who worked his way up to the top from the bottom. For the Democrats of that era, Andrew Jackson was the model common man.
Spoils System
A political practice where the victor gives government jobs to it’s supporters as a reward after winning an election. Said to be a practice started by Andrew Jackson.
Great Silence
Period of time where discussion on slavery ended in Congress after the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Led to further division in the U.S. eventually leading to the Civil War.
Tariff of Abomination
Tariff passed by Congress in 1828 that favored manufacturing in the North to the detriment of agricultural trade in the South.
SC Exposition and Protest
A document written by John C. Calhoun protesting the Tariff of ( Abomination) 1828 and threatened that SC would secede if it wasn’t repealed.
Nullification Crisis
A sectional crisis during Jackson’s presidency created by the Ordinance of Nullification, an attempt by the state of South Carolina led by John C. Calhoun to nullify a federal law – the Tariff of 1828 – passed by the United States Congress.
Indian Removal Act
A congressional act in 1830 that authorized the removal of Native Americans who lived east of the Mississippi River favored and signed by President Jackson.
Worchester v. Georgia
The Supreme Court decided Georgia had no jurisdiction over Cherokee reservations ruling in favor of native Americans. Georgia refused to enforce the decision and President Jackson refused to support the Court.
Trail of Tears
An 800 mile trek made by the Cherokee from their homeland in Georgia to the Indian Territory; resulted in the deaths of almost one-fourth of the Cherokee people. (1838-1839)
Jackson’s “Pet Banks”
A term used by Jackson’s opponents to describe the state banks that the federal government deposited money into to weaken and break the Second Bank of the United States.
Martin Van Buren
8th President of the U.S. from 1837-1841. Advocated lower tariffs and free trade to support of the agriculture of the south for the Democratic party. Unfairly nicknamed “Martin Van Ruin” because of the Panic of 1837.
Panic of 1837
A financial crisis in the United States following Jackson’s presidency that led to an economic depression.
Whig Party
An American political party formed in the 1830s to oppose President Jackson and the Democrats, stood for protective tariffs, a National Central Bank, and federal money for internal improvements.
John Tyler
Elected Vice President becoming the 10th President of the United States in 1841 when Harrison died. Political leanings were similar to the Democrats.
The 2nd Great Awakening
A religious movement of the early 1800s which brought about prison reform, church reform, the temperance movement, women’s rights movement, and the movement for the abolition of slavery.
Charles Finney
Preacher who started the 2nd Great Awakening through his “fire and brimstone” sermons in upstate New York. He insisted that parishioners could save themselves through good works and a steadfast faith in God.
Utopian Communities
Idealistic groups of the 2nd Great Awakening formed to create an ideal government and reform the world. They withdrew from the sinful, corrupt world around them and were similar to the “Hippy Communes” of the 1960s but for religious not political purposes.
New Harmony
A radical community formed in Indiana in 1825 that focused on Utopian Socialism. It was started by Robert Owens but ultimately failed, primarily because many did not share in the difficult work responsibilities of a frontier settlement.
Oneida
Radical community experiment formed in New York in 1848 by John Humphrey Noyes that practiced free love, birth control and the eugenic selection of parents to produce a superior offspring. Lasted for almost 30 years.
Transcendentalism
A movement started by Ralph Waldo Emerson in the 1830s, which held that every individual can reach ultimate truths through spiritual meditation, rising above reason and sensory experience.
Walt Whitman
American poet and transcendentalist who was famous for his beliefs on nature, as demonstrated in his book, Leaves of Grass.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
American father of transcendentalism who was against slavery and stressed self-reliance, optimism, self-improvement, self-confidence, and freedom.
Henry David Thoreau
American transcendentalist who supported civil-disobedience against a government that supported slavery. He wrote about these beliefs in Walden and refused to pay the toll-tax to support the Mexican War.
Civil Disobedience
Political activism that reflects a conscious decision to break a law believed to be immoral and to take the consequences of your actions.
Horace Mann
United States educator who fought for reforms in the system of public education in the 1830s.
Noah Webster
American writer who wrote textbooks and a dictionary which helped standardize the American language and improve education.
Dorothea Dix
A reformer and pioneer in the movement to treat the mentally ill, beginning in the 1820’s, she also served as Head of Nurses for the Union Army during the Civil War.
James Fenimore Cooper
American novelist who is best remembered for his novels of frontier life, such as The Last of the Mohicans in 1826.
Nathaniel Hawthorne
American writer of novels and short stories mostly on moral themes; wrote the Scarlet Letter and the Marble Faun.
Washington Irving
American writer remembered for the stories Rip Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
Herman Melville
American writer whose experiences at sea provided the foundation of Moby-Dick (1851), considered among the greatest of American novels.
Edgar Allen Poe
American poet of the early 1800s, who is best known for his tales of mystery and the macabre. Died in Baltimore shortly after being found drunk in a gutter.
Hudson River School
A group of American painters of the mid 1800s whose works are characterized by a highly romantic treatment of landscape, esp. along the Hudson River
Alex de Tocqueville
French aristocrat who came to visit America and wrote “Democracy in America” in 1831, one of the most read books in history.
William Lloyd Garrison
American abolitionist of the mid 1800s, social reformer, and editor of the anti-slavery newspaper, “The Liberator”, and one of the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society.
The Liberator
An anti-slavery newspaper written by William Lloyd Garrison which drew attention to abolition starting debate between supporters and opponents of slavery.
David Walker
A free African-American who called for the emancipation of all slaves in his “Appeal to the Colored Citizens of the World.” It called for a bloody end to white supremacy. He believed that the only way to end slavery was for slaves to physically revolt.
Frederick Douglass
A self-educated slave who escaped in 1838, considered the most famous abolitionist speaker and the editor the anti-slavery weekly newspaper, “The North Star.”
The North Star
Anti-Slavery journal created by Frederick Douglass. Motto was “Right is of no Sex—Truth is of no Color—God is the Father of us all, and we are all brethren.”
Nat Turner
Leader of an 1831 slave rebellion in in Virginia whose revolt led to the deaths of 20 whites and 40 blacks and led to the “gag rule” outlawing any discussion of slavery in Congress.
Slave Codes
A series of laws passed in the Southern colonies during the late 1600s and early 1700s defining the status of slaves and legalizing the denial of basic civil rights to them.
Suffrage
The legal right to vote, extended to African Americans by the Fifteenth Amendment, to women by the Nineteenth Amendment, and to people over the age of 18 by the Twenty-sixth Amendment.
Grimke Sisters
American Quakers, educators and writers who were early advocates of abolitionism and women’s rights in the 1800s.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott
Suffragettes who organized the first convention on women’s rights, held in Seneca Falls, New York in 1848. Issued the “Declaration of Sentiments” which declared men and women to be equal.
Susan B. Anthony
A key leader of the woman’s suffrage movement and social reformer who campaigned for womens rights, the temperance movement, and was an abolitionist, she helped form the “National Woman’s Suffrage Association.”
Sojourner Truth
A former slave who spoke against the evils of slavery and also for women’s rights. Her most famous speech was called “Aint I a Woman?”
Temperance
Movement developed in the 1800s against drunkenness and highlight the harm caused by alcohol to society.
Seneca Falls Convention
A meeting called for and held by women in upstate New York in 1848 to discuss the rights and conditions of women at which “The Declaration of Sentiments” was issued.
Declaration of Sentiments
A revision of the Declaration of Independence issued in 1848 by reformers to include women and men as equals. It was the grand basis of attaining civil, social, political, and religious rights for women.
Catherine Beecher
Reformer who pushed for public education and the need for women to become teachers for their maternal and moralistic qualities, but was not in favor of radical protests to gain suffrage for women.
Robert Fulton
American inventor of the 1800s who designed the first commercially successful steamboat and the first steam warship.
Charles Goodyear
American inventor discovered in 1839 by mixing sulfur and rubber in a process called vulcanizing, he could “cure” rubber and make it more elastic and usable.
Isaac Singer
American inventor who patented an improved sewing machine in the mid 1800s and became the largest manufacturer of sewing machines in the country.
Samuel Morse
American portrait painter who patented the telegraph and developed the Morse code in the mid 1800s.
John Deere
American inventor who manufactured steel plows in the mid 1800s suitable for working the western prairie lands opening up the West for agricultural settlement.
Cyrus McCormick
American inventor and industrialist who invented the mechanical reaper in the 1831, a harvesting machine that quickly cut down wheat.
Nativism
Anti-immigrant political movement that arose in the 1840’s and 1850’s in response to the influx of Irish and Catholic immigrants to America.
Know-Nothing Party
A secretive, anti-immigrant political party which pushed for political action against immigrants.
Manifest Destiny
A philosophy held by Americans in the 1800s that the United States was destined to rule the continent, from the Atlantic the Pacific.
Mormons
A religious group, founded by Joseph Smith in 1830 who eventually settled Salt Lake City, in Utah, emphasizing moderation, saving, hard work, and risk-taking while migrating from Illinois to Utah.
Joseph Smith
An American who founded the Mormon religion in New York in 1830. Smith’s announcement that God sanctioned polygamy split the Mormons and led to an uprising against Mormons and eventually to Smith’s murder.
Brigham Young
American religious leader who led a group of Mormon’s from Illinois to Utah in 1846, after the murder of Joseph Smith, the group’s founder.
Stephen F. Austin
Known as the Father of Texas, led the second and ultimately successful colonization of the Mexican state by bringing 300 families from the United States. Austin, Texas is named in his honor.
Battle of the Alamo
An 1836 attack on an old Spanish mission in San Antonio, Texas, which was being used by revolutionaries as a fortress. The Mexican forces under the command of General Santa Ana left no survivors leading to the war-cry, “Remember the Alamo”.
Lone Star Republic
Nickname for Texas after it won independence from Mexico in 1836. The Texas Flag contained a single, solitary star on a field of blue next to two panels of red and white.
Sam Houston
First President of the Republic of Texas and commanding General of the Texas Revolutionary Army. Defeated the Mexican President and General of the Mexican Army, Santa Ana.
Oregon Trail
2000 mile long path along which thousands of Americans journeyed from St. Louis to the Willamette Valley of Oregon in the 1840’s.
54′ 40 or Fight
James K. Polk’s presidential campaign slogan adopted over the Oregon boundary dispute with Britain; a dispute over where the border between British-Canada and Oregon should be drawn. Polk eventually settled for the 49º latitude in 1846 as a compromise.
James K. Polk
The 11th President of the U.S., elected in 1844, was committed to westward expansion and slavery. During his term the U.S. annexed Texas, waged war against Mexico taking California Nevada, New Mexico, and concluded the treaty with England over control of Oregon. The boundaries of the U.S. were expanded officially from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
Mexican War
A war declared by the U.S. against Mexico over monetary claims, an alleged attack on American soldiers, and the Slidell Affair all of which are seen today as contrived for the reasons of territorial expansion and “Manifest Destiny”.
Zachary Taylor
Elected the 12th President of the United States in 1848 after serving as General in the Mexican-American War. Nicknamed “Old Rough and Ready”, campaigned as the “Hero of Buena Vista” and died in office in 1849. Was a supporter of slavery.
Winfield Scott
Nicknamed “Old Fuss and Feathers,” his conquest of Mexico City brought U.S. victory in the Mexican War.
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
Treaty signed in 1848 by the U.S. and Mexico that officially ended the Mexican-American War. Mexico was forced to give up it’s northern territory to the U.S (Mexican Cession); in exchange the U.S. gave Mexico $15 million and said that Mexicans living in the lands of the Mexican Cession would be protected.
Gadsden Purchase
Additional land purchase from Mexico by the U.S. after the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed. The U.S. wanted this land for its southwestern stagecoach routes to California and for a future southern trans-continental railroad line.
Gold Rush
Period from1848 to 1856 when thousands of people came to California in order to search for gold.
John Sutter’s Mill
Location where gold was discovered in California in 1848, setting off the gold rush.
10th Amendment
Asserts that powers not delegated to the national government or denied to the states are reserved to the states.
Wilmot Provisio
An 1846 Amendment to a Bill submitted to Congress, preventing the introduction of slavery in any territory acquired from Mexico. It did not pass but angered Southern slave owners anyway.
Compromise of 1850
A complex agreement preventing secession of the Southern states 10 years before the Civil War, by passing the “Fugitive Slave Act”, banning the slave trade in Washington DC, admitting California as a free state, splitting up the Texas territory, and instating popular sovereignty in the Mexican Cession. It was hashed out by Henry Clay “The Great Compromiser” and Stephen Douglass “The Little Giant.”
Underground Railroad
A secret network of safe-houses and people who helped thousands of slaves escape to the North by providing guidance and hiding places.
Harriet Tubman
The most famous “conductor” of the Underground Railroad. Helped more than 300 people escape slavery to the North.
Fugitive Slave Law
Enacted by Congress in 1793 and 1850, for the return of escaped slaves to their owners. The 1793 law was not enforced in the North but the 1850 changes were tougher and attempted to eliminate the underground railroad.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin
A powerful novel written by Harriet Beecher-Stowe in 1852 that made Americans aware of the harsh and inhumane conditions of slavery and put the country on the road to civil war.
Kansas-Nebraska Act
An 1854 agreement that created Nebraska and Kansas as states and gave the people in those territories the right to choose between free or slave status.
Bleeding Kansas
Violent conflict which developed in the 1850s over the expansion of slavery into the Kansas Territory during its transition to statehood. Anti-slavery supporters such as John Brown battled slavery supporters with violence.
Charles Sumner
Abolitionist senator whose verbal attack on the South provoked a physical assault by congressman Preston Brooks that severely injured him.
Dred Scott
American slave who sued his master for keeping him enslaved in a territory where slavery was banned under the Missouri Compromise. His case went to the Supreme Court and was lost with the ruling, that as a slave he was not an American citizen and had no rights under American law.
Republican Party
A political party formed in 1854 against slavery and the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Abe Lincoln was the first Republican president leading to the Civil War.
Lincoln-Douglass Debates
A series of debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas for an Illinois seat in the Senate. These debates led to Abe Lincoln being elected to the senate and later propelled him to the Presidency.
John Brown
Abolitionist who was executed in 1859 after leading an unsuccessful raid at Harper’s Ferry, Virginia in attempt to start a slave uprising.
1860 Election
The election where slavery was finally the central issue. Abraham Lincoln, the Republican candidate won leading the Southern states to secede.
Confederate States
11 southern states that seceded from the United States in 1861, Jefferson Davis was elected as President and Montgomery, AL was chosen as the capitol although it was later moved to Richmond, Va.
Jefferson Davis
An American statesman and politician who served as the President of the Confederate States of America while it existed from 1861 to 1865.
Ft. Sumter
United States military installation in Charleston, SC, which was attacked by the Confederates after the election of Abraham Lincoln beginning the American Civil War. It was a 34 hour bombardment beginning August 12th, 1861. No soldier lost his life, and the Union surrendered the fort when resupply ships were not able to reach them.
Anaconda Plan
The military strategy of the North to divide the South along the Mississippi River and control access to its ports.
Copperheads
A group of northern Democrats who opposed abolition and sympathized with the South during the Civil War.
Substitutions
The ability for a person chosen for the military draft to hire a substitute to fight in their place.
Emancipation Proclamation
A presidential order issued by Abraham Lincoln on September 22, 1862 declaring that all slaves in the Confederate states would be free as Union forces liberated them.
54th Massachusetts
The first African-American unit to fight since the American Revolution. Established to show the other soldiers that black men could and would fight.
Clara Barton
Launched the American Red Cross in 1881. An “angel” in the Civil War, as a nurse she treated the wounded in the field.
Andersonville
The most infamous Civil War era prison in the south. There was no shelter, food shortages, overcrowding, and disease that killed thousands of captured Union soldiers.
Bull Run
The 1st real battle of the Civil War in July of 1861. It was a Confederate victory where Washington spectators gathered to watch the battle showing all on both sides that the war was not going to be quick and easy.
Shiloh
This was a brutal battle fought at a church in Tennessee on April 12, 1862. It was an attempt by the North to capture strategic Confederate railroads. Grant’s forces were surprised and chewed up by Confederate forces led by Johnston and the strong resistance prevented Grant from achieving his mission. Confederate forces retreated after Johnston was killed and it was considered a Union victory although both forces lost 24,000 men combined.
Ulysses S. Grant
The 18th President of the United States elected in 1868. He achieved international fame as the leading Union general in the American Civil War.
Antietam
A brutal Civil War battle that took place on September 17, 1862 in Sharpsburg, Maryland. Lee was forced to retreat giving the North a costly victory. It is known as the bloodiest day in American history with the death of 26,000 men on both sides combined. After the battle Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.
George McClellan
A Union General that was put in charge of all U.S. forces from 1861 to 1862. A Great organizer and planner but overly cautious general. Defeated Lee at the battle of Antietam but Lincoln relived him of command for not following up on his victory and allowing Lee to get away. He was Nicknamed “Tardy George.” A final note is he ran against Lincoln in the presidential election of 1864, but was defeated.
Vicksburg
Union Army blockade and siege of the last Mississippi River stronghold of the South. Grant took control of this city on July 4, 1863. The surrender gave the Union complete control of the Mississippi River and cut off Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas from rest of Confederacy.
Robert E. Lee
Civil War General who turned down Lincoln’s offer to head the Union army and instead took control of all Confederate forces. He successfully led several major battles until his defeat at Gettysburg, and he surrendered to the General Grant at Appomattox Courthouse.
Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson
A strange men with odd tendencies though he was an inspiration to his troops because of his outstanding bravery, he was noted for his bravery in battle because held strong refusing to give ground. He was accidentally killed by his own men at the Battle of Chancellorsville in 1863.
Gettysburg
The most famous battle of the American Civil War. Took place in southern Pennsylvania from July 1 to July 3, 1863. Union General George Meade 90,000 men to victory against Robert E. Lee’s 75,000. Gettysburg is the war’s most famous battle because of its large size, high cost in lives, and for President Abraham Lincoln’s famous speech which was given after the battle.
Pickett’s Charge
A failed Confederate assault against Union lines during the Battle of Gettysburg. Named for Confederate General George Pickett, who led the attack. The charge ended in defeat and the death of 10,000 Confederate soldiers. Although the war would go on this was the beginning of the end for the South.
Gettysburg Address
A famous speech given by Abraham Lincoln during the American Civil War on November 19, 1963 at the dedication of a national cemetery on the site of the Battle of Gettysburg.
William T. Sherman
A successful Union general who implemented the tactic of “total war” in order to defeat the South. Led a successful military campaign to conquer Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Burned Atlanta to the ground.
The March to the Sea
A brutal assault by Union forces from Atlanta to Savannah during November and December of 1864, through the state of Georgia led by General Sherman. He and his men left their supplies behind and lived off the land as they burnt and looted the Georgia countryside.
Appomattox Courthouse
The location of the surrender of the Army of Virginia by General Lee to General Grant on April 9, 1865, ending the Civil War. This was not the official end of the war but in reality the Confederacy was finished.
Monitor and the Merrimac
First engagement ever between two iron-clad naval vessels. The two ships battled in a portion of the Cheasepeake Bay known as Hampton Roads for five hours on March 9, 1862, ending in a draw.
Greenbacks
Dollars, name for Union paper money not backed by gold or silver. Value would fluctuate depending on status of the war.
13th Amendment
An 1865 Amendment to the U.S. Constitution abolishing and prohibiting slavery in America.
Lincoln’s Reconstruction Plan
A plan starting in 1865 that offered reinstatement for Southern states as long as 10% of the state swore allegiance to the Union. Lincoln was attempting to reinstate the Union with minimal difficulty. Ended because of his assassination.
John Wilkes Booth
American stage actor who, as part of a conspiracy plot, assassinated Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C. on April 14, 1865 shortly after the end of the war.
Radical Reconstruction Plan
A comprehensive strategy of rebuilding the Union that was based on severely punishing South for causing the Civil War, implemented in 1867 by members of Congress when they had the votes using Lincoln’s assassination as congressional fuel.
Wade-Davis Bill
An 1864 plan for Reconstruction that denied the right to vote or hold office for anyone who had fought for the Confederacy. Lincoln refused to sign this bill thinking it was too harsh.
Andrew Johnson
17th President of the United States from 1865-1869. Became President after Lincoln was killed. Although a southerner from Tennessee he had remained loyal to the Union. He opposed “Radical Reconstruction” angering members of Congress leading them to pass reconstruction acts over his vetos. He was the first U.S. President to be impeached, and survived Senate removal by only one vote. Considered a very weak president.
Black Codes
Laws denying most legal rights to newly freed slaves. These were passed by southern states following the Civil War.
14th Amendment
An amendment to the U. S. Constitution passed in 1868 that made all persons born in the United States-including former slaves-citizens of the country.
Scalawags
A derogatory term for Southerners who were working with the North to buy up land from desperate Southerners after the Civil War.
Carpetbaggers
A derogatory term applied to Northerners who migrated south during the Reconstruction to take advantage of opportunities to buy up land from desperate Southerners and for their manipulation of new black voters to obtain lucrative government contracts.
Tenure of Office Act
An 1866 law enacted by the radicals in congress denying the president from removing civil officers without senatorial consent this was to prevent Johnson from removing radical republicans from his cabinet.
15th Amendment
An 1869 Amendment adding a 3rd Reconstruction Amendment to the 13th and 14th, to keep any state from denying or abridging a citizen’s right to vote on account of race, or previous condition of servitude.
Sharecropping System
Dominant agricultural system in the South after the Civil War. A system of agriculture in which a landowner allows a tenant to use the land in return for a share of the crop produced on the land. Kept tenant farmers poor and on the land.
40 Acres and a Mule
General Sherman promised the freed slaves who followed his army 40 Acres and the use of army mules after the war. His promise was not kept when Congress failed to authorize it. Today this saying is referenced as broken promises to African-Americans about American prosperity.
Freedman’s Bureau
A federal agency set up in 1865 to provide food, schools, and medical care to freed slaves in the South.
Reconstruction
The overall attempt to rebuild the and reform the political, social, and economic systems in the South following the Civil War. Lasted from 1865-1877and eventually was abandoned as Northerners grew weary of the costs associated with trying to reform the South.
Credit Mobilier
A joint-stock corporation organized in 1863 and reorganized in 1867 to build the Union Pacific Railroad. It was involved in a scandal in 1872 in which high government officials were accused of accepting bribes. Made President Grant look bad although most people believe he was not involved.
Whiskey Ring
An 1874 scandal during Grant’s presidency in which a group of administration officials imported whiskey and used their offices to avoid paying the taxes on it, cheating the treasury out of millions of dollars. Although Grant was not involved but it made him look bad.
Panic of 1873
A four year economic depression caused by overspeculation on railroads and western lands, and worsened by Grant’s poor fiscal response in refusing to coin silver. People did not trust paper money.
Compromise of 1877
An agreement reached because of the disputed Presidential Election of 1876. Congress declared Republican Rutherford B. Hayes the winner over Samuel Tilden the Demcrat, and Republicans promised to withdraw the remaining troops from Southern states. This marked the end of the Radical Republicans power and Reconstruction as Democrats regained control of the South, and freed slaves were left in the hands of their former oppressors.
Rutherford B. Hayes
The 19th president of the U.S. from 1878 – 1881 was famous for being part of the Hayes-Tilden election in which electoral votes were contested in 4 states, considered the most corrupt election in US history.
Home Rule
Concept created by White Southerners in the late 1870s after Reconstruction that prohibited the North from interfering with Southern elections allowing them to regain control of their local and state governments. Basically shutting Southern Blacks out of elections until the 1960s.
Jim Crow Laws
Laws and civic codes legalizing racial segregation in Southern states beginning in the 1880’s and enforced through the 1960’s up until the Civil Rights Movement.
KKK
Southern terrorist group formed in 1866 to prevent freed black men and women from exercising their rights and to help whites regain power.
Solid South
Term applied to the one-party “Dixie-Crat” system of the South following the Civil War. For 100 years after the Civil War, the South voted Democrat in every presidential election.
Great American Desert
The vast arid territory that included the Great Plains and the Western Plateau. Known as this before 1860, they were the lands between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains.
Homestead Act
Law passed in 1862 that provided free land in the West to anyone willing to settle there and develop it. Encouraged westward migration.
Central and Union Pacific
The name of the two companies which built the “Trans-Continental Railroad” connecting the East Coast with the West Coast. Both companies met at Promontory Point in Utah on May 10, 1869, marking the spot with a Golden Railroad Spike.
Dakota Uprising
Revolt of Native Americans in 1862, which occurred when money promised to Native Americans in Minnesota living on reservations never materialized.
Sand Creek Massacre
1864, attack in which U.S army Colonel John M. Chivington led a surprise attack on a group of Cheyenne Indians. The Cheyenne under Chief Black kettle tried to surrender. But the soldiers ignored both the the White flag of surrender and the American flag. Chivington’s men killed about 200 Cheyenne during brutal attack.
The Black Hills War
Land given to the Sioux Native American Tribe in the 1870s near Mt. Rushmore. When gold was discovered there in 1872 a war broke out between miners who wanted the gold and the Natives who had been given the land. The U.S. army ended up defeating the Sioux, but not until General Custer was defeated by the Natives.
The Little Bighorn
Location where in 1876 General George A. Custer’s 7th Calvary was defeated in a battle against the Sioux. No cavalrymen survived this battle in which the famous Sioux warrior Crazy Horse led the native warriors.
Sitting Bull
American Indian medicine man, chief, and political leader of his Sioux tribe at the time of the Custer massacre during the Sioux War.
George Armstrong Custer
United States general who was killed along with all his men by the Sioux at the battle of Little Bighorn in 1876.
Chief Joseph
Leader of the Nez Perce people during the hostilities between the tribe and the U.S. Army in 1877. His speech “I Will Fight No More Forever” mourned the young Indian men killed in the fighting.
Century of Dishonor
Helen Hunt Jackson’s book written in 1881 about the long record of injustice toward the Native Americans which aroused many people’s awareness.
Dawes Act
1887 law which divided reservation land up giving all Native American males 160 acres to farm and also set up schools to make Native American children more like other Americans.
Assimilation
A process whereby a minority group and a dominant group gradually become united into a common culture, this was a social plan developed in the 1880s to “Civilize” Native Americans.
Ghost Dance
A cult of Native American shamanistic spiritualists who were attempting to call the spirits of past warriors to inspire the young braves to fight. It was crushed at the Battle of Wounded Knee in 1890.
Wounded Knee Massacre
In December 1890, Army troops captured some of Sitting Bull’s followers and took them to a camp. 300 Sioux men, women, and children were killed
Chisholm Trail
A former cattle trail from San Antonio in Texas to Abilene in Kansas, where a Railroad station was located. Made famous by the Cowboys of the Wild West in the late 1800s.
Comstock Lode
A historic gold and silver source in the Virginia Mountains of western Nevada, that was the basis of a boom that lasted from the 1850s through the late 19th century.
Ghost Town
Term derives from deserted boom towns; after prospector’s had given up hope of finding gold when it dried up they moved on to a new locations.
Wild West
Term used to describe the American West in the late 1800s as “violent, adventurous, and having endless opportunities.”
Wild Bill Hickock
A scout and spy in the Civil War and a U.S. Marshal. This famous Wild West figure was a violent man that was shot in the back and killed while holding a pair of 8s and 3 Aces. Today this combination of cards in poker is known as a “dead man’s” hand.
Wyatt Earp
Former sheriff of Dodge City met his two brothers in Tombstone, Arizona, where they killed several outlaw gunmen in a shootout which became known as the Battle of the O.K. Corral.
Billy the Kid
An outlaw of the late nineteenth century in New Mexico, who claimed to have killed over twenty people; he was gunned down himself at age twenty-one. His real name is thought to be Willian H. Bonney.
Dime Novels
Inexpensive fiction, popular in the late 1800s which popularized the Wild West and Indian stories, that sold for 10 cents; also called pulp fiction.
Jesse James
United States outlaw who fought as a Confederate soldier and later led a band of brutal outlaws that robbed trains and banks in the West until he was murdered by a member of his own gang in 1882.
Morrill Land Grants
This law passed in the 1880s donated money to the states from the sale of public lands out West. This money was used to establish Universities such as N.C. State and A. & T. University.
Frederick Jackson Turner
American historian of the late 1800s and early 1900s who said that humanity would continue to progress as long as there was new land to move into. The frontier provided a place for the homeless and helped to solve social problems. I guess he was not thinking about the Natives in the lands being taken!
Omaha Platform
The 1892 platform of the Populist party repudiating laissez-faire economic policies and demanding economic and political reform.
Free Silver
Political issue of the 1890s involving the unlimited coinage of silver, supported by farmers and William Jennings Bryan. These reformers did not trust paper money.
James A. Garfield
The 20th President, he was elected in 1880 but was assassinated less than four months of taking office in 1881.
Chester A. Arthur
Garfield’s running mate and Vice President who became President after Garfield was shot, the 21st president.

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