U.S. History – in a nutshell

Development of Virginia (Virginia Company)
Who/What: Jamestown, VA became the 1st successful English colony.
Where: Virginia
When: 1607
Why/How: Virginia Company was a joint-stock company (company owned by group of investors). The colonists hoped to get rich & obtain land. John Rolfe helped to save the colony with the production of tobacco.
Cultivation of tobacco
Who/What: colonists in Jamestown found a way to produce tobacco cheaply to make a profit
Where: Jamestown, VA
When: early 1600’s
Why/How: Tobacco became the colony’s chief source of income. It produced large revenues for the British government in taxes, and created a class of wealthy, large landowners in Virginia. Colonists used the headright system and indentured servitude to attract people to the colonies (headright system- paid your own way, provided 50 acres of land to those who settled in the colony; indentured servitude- came over as a “slave” and worked off freedom- usually 5 to 7 years.
Powhatan
Who/What: Native American tribe led by Chief Powhatan.
Where: Virginia
When: 1620’s-1640’s
Why/How: Native Americans attacked the colonists in Virginia. The settlers tried to negotiate peace. Conflicts with natives will continue in the Virginia colony for years.
House of Burgesses
Who/What: 1st elected legislative body in the New World.
Where: Virginia
When: 1619
Why/How: The Burgesses were selected directly by the people, and along with the governor and his appointed council, comprised Virginia’s government
Bacon’s Rebellion
Who/What: Nathaniel Bacon
Where: Virginia
When: 1676
Why/How: Nathaniel Bacon was a Virginia planter and wealthy aristocrat who rallied forces to fight the Native Americans in Virginia. (He was tired of getting attacked by the natives). The colony’s governor refused to help so Bacon’s small army of landowners, servants, and a few slaves, turned on Jamestown. Virginia began relying less on indentured servants and more on slaves.
settlement of New England
Who/What: Puritans (religious dissenters in disagreement with the Anglican Church)
Where: Massachusetts Bay colony
When: 1621
Why/How: Puritans (Separatists) came to the New World to establish a colony at Plymouth, Massachusetts (1620). They wanted to establish a community built solely on “pure biblical teaching” rather than Anglican traditions. New England colonies relied heavily on shipbuilding (maritime trade) and fishing. Education was important to the New England colonies. Colonists lost their charter and Massachusetts will eventually become a royal colony.
King Philip’s War
Who/What: Native Americans/Metacom (King Philip)
Where: New England colonies
When: 1675
Why/How: attacked New England colonists in an unsuccessful attempt to drive out English settlers
Rhode Island
Who/What: Roger Williams/Anne Hutchinson (formed from those who disagreed with the Puritan church)
Where: Rhode Island
When: 1630’s
Why/How: colonists left Massachusetts and formed a new colony (Rhode Island) because they were banished from the Puritan church and the colony
establishment of town meetings and development of legislature
Who/What: New England colonists/Puritans
Where: New England colonies
When: 1600’s
Why/How: local, taxpaying citizens (property owners) met together to discuss and vote on issues (derived from the Mayflower Compact)
Half-way Covenant
Who/What: involved the Puritans
Where: Massachusetts
Why/How: needed a “conversion experience” to join the Puritan church. The half-way covenant established partial membership for children and grandchildren of full members of the Puritan church.
Salem Witch Trials
Who/What: Puritans
Where: Massachusetts
When: 1692
Why/How: several young girls and men were tried for being witches which led to social, political, and religious unrest in Massachusetts
Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam
Who/What: Dutch settled the “New Netherlands” along the Hudson River
Where: New York
When: 1625
Why/How: Dutch eventually surrendered the colony to the King’s brother the Duke of York and it was renamed New York under England’s rule.
French settlement of Quebec
Who/What: Samuel de Champlain
Where: along the St. Lawrence River
When: 1608
Why/How: settled to carry out fur trade and establish more colonies along the river. Quebec is France’s 1st successful colony in North America.
Mercantilism
Who/What: economic theory
Where: North American colonies (English)
When: 1600’s
Why/How: countries grow wealthier and maintain national security by exporting more goods than they import goods.
Middle Passage
Who/What: route taken by ships carrying slaves from Africa to the New World
Where: middle “leg” of the Triangular Trade
When: 1600’s
Why/How: much misery and death of African slaves
Benjamin Franklin
Who/What: inventor, writer, ambassador, founding father
Where: Philadelphia, PA
When: 1700’s
Why/How: example of social mobility and the enlightenment ideas (achieving the “American Dream”)
Great Awakening
Who/What: Jonathan Edwards/passionate preaching
Where: English colonies
When: 1730’s
Why/How: revival of religion in the colonies
French and Indian War
Who/What: British/French/ Native Americans
Where: along Mississippi River/Appalachian Mountains (colonists moving west)
When: 1754
Why/How: as British colonists moved west, they fought with French settlers and natives. Natives fought on both sides. Resulted in the 1763 Treaty of Paris.
1763 Treaty of Paris
Who/What: Treaty between Britain and France
Where: Paris, France
When: 1763
Why/How: France gave up its claims in Canada and all lands east of the Mississippi River. Britain was the one true colonial power in North America.
Proclamation of 1763
Who/What: King of England’s proclamation to the colonies
Where: west of the Appalachian Mountains
When: 1763
Why/How: forbade the colonists from settling west of the Appalachian Mountains and put territory under British control (Northwest Territory)
Stamp Act
Who/What: Parliamentary laws and taxes
Where: colonies
When: mid 1760’s
Why/How: British government taxed nearly all printed material requiring that it contain a government stamp.
Intolerable Acts
Who/What: Coercive Acts/British response to the Boston Tea Party
Where: Massachusetts
When: early 1770’s
Why/How: British government closed Boston Harbor and placed a military government in Massachusetts.
Sons and Daughters of Liberty
Who/What: organization of men and women/ response to the Stamp Act (Samuel Adams)
Where: colonies
When: mid 1760’s
Why/How: often used violence to intimidate any merchant or loyal official who might otherwise use the stamp- led to the repeal of the Stamp Act.
Committees of Correspondence
Who/What: organized groups who were dedicated to resisting British laws
Where: Massachusetts (led the Boston Tea party)
When: 1773
Why/How: made sure colonists remained angry with British rule
Thomas Paine’s Common Sense
Who/What: famous pamphlet
Where: colonies
When: 1776
Why/How: prompted colonists & Second Continental Congress to stop seeking resolution & declare independence
Ben Franklin/Marquis de Lafayette/French alliance
Who/What: U.S. had no navy/France did/France hated England
Where: colonies/France
When: after American victory at Saratoga, France agreed to help the colonists (1780’s)
Why/How: Ben Franklin went to Paris to convince France to ally with the U.S. Lafayette – trained American soldiers/talented soldier and leader
George Washington as a military leader
Who/What: had military experience fighting for the British
Where: colonies/American Revolution
When: 1776
Why/How: had to form an army out of farmers, frontiersman, and volunteers. Held his army together and was willing to risk his own life.
Life of a Common Soldier
Who/What: soldiers in American Revolution
Where: colonies
When: American Revolution (1776-1781)
Why/How: had to camp in cold, wet conditions with very few clothes or shoes and often no pay.
Crossing the Delaware River
Who/What: on Christmas night attacking the Hessians
Where: Trenton, NJ
When: December 1776
Why/How: surprise attack that resulted in victory and boosted morale- Continental Army believe that they could win the American Revolution.
Valley Forge
Who/What: Baron von Steuben helped to train the Continental Army during this time- after the winter the American soldiers were better prepared and more determined
Where: Pennsylvania
When: following victory at Saratoga- winter 1777
Why/How: if they could survive these harsh conditions, they could win the American Revolution
Lord Cornwallis
Who/What: commander of the British Army
Where: Southern War (Savannah, Charleston) – surrendered at Yorktown, VA
When: Late 1778-1781
Why/How: took advantage of the Tories (Loyalists) in the South to help them win the war
Battle of Yorktown
Who/What: last battle of the American Revolution
Where: Yorktown, VA
When: 1781
Why/How: French navy provided a blockade and the Continental Army pinned the British at Yorktown, VA. Cornwallis surrendered.
Treaty of Paris 1783
Who/What: treaty between Americans/British after the American Revolution
Where: Paris, France
When: 1783
Why/How: Great Britain finally recognized the independence of the United States
Northwest Ordinance
Who/What: law that divided the Northwest Territory into smaller territories
Where: Northwest Territory (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin)
When: 1787
Why/How: provided guidelines under which new states could be admitted to the Union/outlawed slavery in this territory
Louisiana Purchase
Who/What: Thomas Jefferson/bought for 15 million dollars from France/Napoleon
Where: middle part of U.S. (Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, Louisiana, and Wyoming)
When: 1803
Why/How: doubled the size of the United States
Lewis and Clark
Who/What: Thomas Jefferson appointed these 2 men to explore the Louisiana Purchase
Where: Louisiana Territory
When: 1804-1805
Why/How: came back with valuable information/ especially on Oregon and Louisiana (pathway from Missouri will eventually become known as the Oregon Trail)
War of 1812
Who/What: Congress declared war on Great Britain
Where: United States
When: June 12, 1812
Why/How: British were “impressing” American ships/wanted to kick British out of North America for good/U.S. won/Andrew Jackson is a war hero from the Battle of New Orleans/American nationalism is felt.
Erie Canal
Who/What: man-made waterway to make travel easier and faster
Where: New York to the Great Lakes
When: 1825
Why/How: linked Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes/allowed trade to travel easier & boosted commercial markets
Thomas Jefferson
Who/What: writer of the Declaration of Independence/3rd president of the U.S. /1st Secretary of State
Where: Philadelphia, PA
When: 1776
Why/How: Thomas Jefferson used many Enlightenment philosophies to influence the writing of the Declaration. He used the principle of egalitarianism (all men are created equal) and that men are born with certain rights (life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness)
John Locke
Who/What: British philosopher that Declaration of Independence ideas were taken from
Where: England
When: 1632-1704
Why/How: He believed in “natural rights” and that if the government fails to serve its citizens, those citizens have the right to resist and/or replace it with a new system. (Government based on “by the people, for the people”)
Declaration of Independence
Who/What: written by Thomas Jefferson/declares independence from England
Where: United States
When: 1776
Why/How: includes a list of grievances that the King has placed upon the colonists- colonists are now declaring freedom from British rule
weaknesses in the Articles of Confederation
Who/What: original government law of the new founded independent states
Where: independent states
When: 1781 (ratified)
Why/How: colonists were trying to get away from too much authority in central government: 1. Not enough national government power 2. Congress couldn’t impose taxes 3. National government couldn’t provide for a national defense.
Daniel Shays’ Rebellion
Who/What; Massachusetts farmer/ led a rebellion of farmers unable to repay outstanding loans on their farms
Where: Massachusetts
When: 1786
Why/How: Showed weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation because national government could not send in troops to put down rebellion- leaders called for a convention to revise the Articles.
Anti-Federalists
Who/What: Thomas Jefferson/Patrick Henry
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: “strict” interpretation of the Constitution/power to the states/rights of the citizens
Federalists
Who/What: Alexander Hamilton/James Madison
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: “loose” interpretation of the Constitution/favored strong, central government
Factions
Who/What: political parties (groups of people bound by a common belief/cause)
Where: Constitutional Convention (Washington will warn of these in his Farewell Address)
When: 1787
Why/How: George Washington said they would cause problems and divisions for the country. 1st political parties: Federalist Party and the Democratic-Republican Party
The Federalist Papers
Who/What: essays written by John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison
Where: New York
When: 1787-1789
Why/How: to persuade New York’s legislature to ratify the Constitution by easing fears that no one would seize too much power
checks and balances
Who/What: Founding Fathers
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: allows each branch to “check” each other so that one branch does not become to authoritative
Alexander Hamilton
Who/What: Secretary of the Treasury/Federalist
Where: New York (Hamilton’s home state)
When: 1789
Why/How: George Washington supported many of his views and plans on how to run and finance the government (created the national bank)
James Madison
Who/What: Father of the Constitution
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: developed framework of the Constitution (3 branches of government) He was a Federalist.
separation of powers
Who/What: Founding Fathers
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: divides authority to govern between branches: executive, judicial, and legislative
Executive-President and Cabinet- enforces laws
Judicial- Supreme Court and lower courts- make sure laws are constitutional
Legislative- Congress (House of Representatives and Senate) – makes laws
Great Compromise
Who/What: Roger Sherman (Connecticut Compromise)
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: combined the New Jersey Plan (small states) and Virginia Plan (large states). Reason we have a bicameral legislature. Senate= 2 from every state. House of Representatives= based on population
3/5 Compromise (Three-Fifths)
Who/What: originated from the Southern states
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: said that slaves should count because they were part of the population- agreement that they would count as 3/5 of a person- added population to the South- couldn’t talk about slavery for 20 years.
Bill of Rights
Who/What: proposed by the Anti-Federalists
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: purpose of protecting civil liberties (people’s rights) – Anti-Federalists would only accept the Constitution with the addition of the Bill of Rights
George Washington’s presidency
Who/What: set the precedent for future presidents
Where: capital of the nation was 1st in New York, then in Philadelphia, then in Washington D.C.
When: elected 1789 and 1792
Why/How: favored Federalist views. Wanted U.S. to remain neutral and avoid alliances with other nations (foreign policy). Set up precedent for 2 term presidency.
John Adams’ presidency
Who/What: 1st vice-president/ 2nd president of the U.S.
Where: Washington D.C.
When: 1796
Why/How: Washington was a tough act to follow. He was a Federalist and at constant odds with Thomas Jefferson. President during the XYZ Affair with France and broke off relations with France.
Whiskey Rebellion
Who/What: Pennsylvania farmers refused to pay whiskey tax. They were very angry over it.
Where: Pennsylvania
When: 1794
Why/How: U.S. troops were sent in to enforce the law and stop the resistance (1st time under Constitution, now national government could intervene). Farmers began to favor Jefferson and Anti-Federalist views.
United States neutrality
Who/What: George Washington/John Jay (1st chief justice of the Supreme Court)
Where: London
When: 1794
Why/How: U.S. wanted to remain neutral (new country) Jay’s Treaty increased trade with Britain and Britain agreed to withdraw from its forts in the Northwest Territory. U.S. was not taking sides with either Britain or France.
Power of the Executive
Who/What: President
Where: Constitutional Convention
When: 1787
Why/How: Head of state/head of government/has “limited” powers- authority is not like that of a king.
Rise of New York City
Who/What: Samuel Slater opened a textile mill in Rhode Island in the late 1700’s. By 1814, these mills were common in New York City.
Where: New York
When: early 1800’s
Why/How: New York’s port made it a major center for shipping and trade- arrival point for immigrants- helped nations “infrastructure” (way that a nation is built up- it’s interior)
Monroe Doctrine
Who/What: James Monroe- U.S. would not interfere in European affairs, they should do the same
Where: United States
When: 1823
Why/How: U.S. would view any future attempts to colonize the Western Hemisphere as acts of aggression.
Eli Whitney
Who/What: inventor of the cotton gin and interchangeable parts
Where: South- cotton gin; North- interchangeable parts
When: middle of the 19th century
Why/How: cotton gin- harvested cotton faster/need for slaves grew; interchangeable parts- musket parts could be used interchangeably
Manifest Destiny
Who/What: U.S. believed it was God’s will to expand and possess territory from Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.
Where: United States
When: middle of 19th century (1850’s)
Why/How: It was the nation’s duty to conquer the West.
Temperance
Who/What: movement to moderate the use of alcohol
Where: United States
When: early 19th century
Why/How: women and church leaders led the movement that will eventually go from moderate use to abstinence of alcohol altogether. (18th amendment- prohibition)
Abolitionism
Who/What: White, middle-class, often Quakers (black abolitionists were usually former slaves)- Harriet Tubman- Underground Railroad and Harriet Beecher Stowe Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
Where: North- some South
When: 1830’s
Why/How: South was dependent on slavery for cotton production; North saw slavery as an evil.
Public school reform
Who/What: Horace Mann
Where: Northern United States
When: 1800’s
Why/How: believed education was necessary for success. Created 1st Board of Education in Massachusetts. Horace Mann was the first superintendent of schools.
Seneca Falls Conference
Who/What: women/Elizabeth Cady Stanton/Susan B. Anthony/Lucretia Mott
Where: New York
When: 1848
Why/How: women’s rights convention/women’s right to vote/suffrage
Jacksonian Democracy
Who/What: Andrew Jackson
Where: United States (presidential election)
When: 1824
Why/How: Jackson was a “common man”/considered president of the people/used the spoils system/laissez-faire economics (“hands-off” government) Trail of Tears (Indian Removal Act)
Nat Turner’s Rebellion
Who/What: preacher and slave
Where: Virginia
When: 1831
Why/How: organized a revolt killing 160 people- resulted in stricter slave codes in the South
William Lloyd Garrison
Who/What: founder of an anti-slavery newspaper called The Liberator
Where: North
When: 1831
Why/How: helped establish American anti-slavery society
Frederick Douglass
Who/What: escaped slave from Maryland (most prominent African-American abolitionist)
Where: North
When: 1800’s
Why/How: self-educated (taught himself how to read and write) wrote several books, most famous Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Grimke sisters
Who/What: Sarah and Angelina Grimke
Where: South Carolina
When: 1800’s
Why/How: from a slave owning family who gave passionate anti-slavery speeches
Missouri Compromise
Who/What: James Monroe/Missouri/Maine
Where: United States
When: 1820
Why/How: resulted in the 36° 30′ line- dividing line for states admitted to the Union regarding slavery. Missouri would enter as a slave state- Maine as a free state.
Nullification Crisis
Who/What: Andrew Jackson/South Carolina/John C. Calhoun/10th Amendment
Where: South Carolina
When: early 1830’s
Why/How: South Carolina was protesting against high tariffs (taxes) and threatened to secede the Union- President Jackson threatened to send in troops/tariff was lowered and South Carolina remained in the Union (for a time).
John C. Calhoun
Who/What: South Carolina Senator who favored states’ rights
Where: South Carolina
When: 1830’s
Why/How: believed that any state could refuse to enforce a law it saw unconstitutional (10th Amendment)
Mexican-American War
Who/What: James K. Polk/”spot resolutions”/gaining territory for the U.S./annexation of Texas
Where: border of Mexico and United States (along Rio Grande River)
When: 1846-1848
Why/How: Mexico still claimed ownership of Texas after it became a state in 1845. United States claimed that Americans were killed on American soil (disputed) and the United States went to war. Resulted in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo: United States got California and New Mexico and paid for the rest of the territory with the Gadsden Purchase.
Wilmot Proviso
Who/What: David Wilmot/ proposed banning slavery from any land purchased/received from Mexico
Where: Western United States
When: mid to late 1800’s
Why/How: North liked it, South hated it, and Congress voted it down (put more pressure on the slavery issue)
Compromise of 1850
Who/What: important piece of legislation/Henry Clay
Where: Western United States
When: 1850
Why/How: admitted California to the Union as a free state, declared unorganized western territories free, Utah and New Mexico were allowed to decide based on popular sovereignty, Fugitive Slave Law required Northern states to return runaway slaves.
Kansas-Nebraska Act
Who/What: Congress passed this act that allowed previously free and unorganized territories of Kansas and Nebraska to decide whether or not to permit slavery by popular sovereignty.
Where: Kansas and Nebraska
When: 1854
Why/How: supporters of slavery and abolition rushed into Kansas- it became known as “Bleeding Kansas” because of all the violence that erupted. (John Brown- radical abolitionist)
popular sovereignty
Who/What: “people rule” (deciding whether or not to have their state a free or slave state)
Where: territories becoming states/decisions on slavery
When: 1800’s
Why/How: allowing people to decide for themselves what the slavery law will be in their state
Dred Scott case
Who/What: a slave who sued for his freedom because he went to live in a free territory for a time.
Where: Missouri
When: 1857
Why/How: Supreme Court said a slave cannot sue for freedom because they were property and not a citizen. (North was angry because this nullified the Missouri Compromise and slavery could be anywhere).
John Brown’s Raid
Who/What: radical abolitionist
Where: Harper’s Ferry, VA
When: 1859
Why/How: attacked the federal arsenal to seize weapons & give them to slaves to encourage them to rebel.
Gettysburg Address/Second Inaugural Address
Who/What: Abraham Lincoln
Where: Gettysburg, PA/Washington D.C.
When: 1863 and 1865
Why/How: Gettysburg Address showed that Lincoln wanted to see the Union survive and the nation reunited. Second Inaugural Address- Lincoln stated that slavery was evil and that he wanted to reunite the Union after the war.
habeas corpus
Who/What; the guarantee that a person cannot be imprisoned without being brought before a judge/Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis
Where: Maryland
When: early 1860’s
Why/How: Lincoln declared martial law in Maryland and suspended the writ of habeas corpus and also jailed the strongest supporters of the Confederacy. Maryland would remain in the Union.
Ulysses S. Grant
Who/What: General for the Union
Where: North
When: Civil War 1861-1865
Why/How; An effective general in the Union’s western battles. He assumed command of the Union army in 1864. Defeated the South and accepted Robert E. Lee’s unconditional surrender at Appomattox Courthouse. North had the large military and ammunition to win the Civil War. (18th president of U.S.)
Robert E. Lee
Who/What: General for the Confederacy
Where: South
When: Civil War 1861-1865
Why/How: Won many victories/South had the leadership and drive to win, however, he will surrender to Grant at Appomattox Courthouse.
“Stonewall” Jackson
Who/What: General for the Confederacy
Where: South
When: Civil War 1861-1865
Why/How: Robert E. Lee’s right hand man. Won many battles. Was accidentally shot at the Battle of Chancellorsville by friendly fire and eventually died.
William T. Sherman
Who/What: General for the Union
Where: North
When: Civil War 1861-1865
Why/How: He captured Atlanta, GA in 1864 which helped Lincoln win re-election. He is most remembered for his “march to the sea” where his troops burned and destroyed southern cities and railways which hurt the morale in the South and devastated the South’s chance of winning the Civil War.
Jefferson Davis
Who/What: 1st and only president of the Confederate States of America
Where: South
When: February 1861-end of Civil War
Why/How: Southern delegates met in Montgomery, AL to draft their own constitution and elect their first president. Jefferson Davis was chosen. He will eventually flee the capital and escape from the Union.
Fort Sumter
Who/What: Lincoln sent food and supplies to Union soldiers, but no weapons.
Where: South Carolina
When: April 1861
Why/How: Union troops were occupying Ft. Sumter, they were fired on by the South and forced to leave the fort. (1st shots-beginning of Civil War)
Antietam
Who/What: bloodiest battle day in Civil War
Where: Antietam Creek, MD
When: September 1862
Why/How: halted the Confederate advance/Gen. McClellan (Lincoln fired him) discovered Gen. Lee’s plans
Vicksburg
Who/What: Battle that split the Confederacy in two at the Mississippi River.
Where: Vicksburg, MS
When: May-July 1863
Why/How: cut off the Mississippi River (Anaconda Plan) and supplies could not reach the troops or people.
Gettysburg
Who/What: turning point of the war for the North
Where: Gettysburg, PA
When: July 1863
Why/How: Confederated troops were defeated in the bloodiest battle of the Civil War.
Battle for Atlanta
Who/What: William T. Sherman
Where: Atlanta, GA
When: May-December 1864
Why/How: Sherman wanted to damage Atlanta’s railway hub. North burned Atlanta and Sherman began his march to the sea.
Emancipation Proclamation
Who/What: Abraham Lincoln
Where: after victory at Antietam, MD
When: January 1, 1863
Why/How: Freed the slaves in the rebelling states. (slaves in border states and elsewhere were not free). Lincoln wanted to undermine the South.
Southern economy
Who/What: Less populated than the North, fewer railroads, fewer industries, based on agriculture (cotton)
Where: Southern states
When: 1860’s
Why/How: South’s economy was dependent on cotton and slavery
Northern economy
Who/What: heavier population, more railroads, more industry based business
Where: Northern states
When: 1860’s
Why/How: Northern economy relied on industry and railroads as their major business.
Presidential Reconstruction
Who/What: South to be held LESS accountable for Civil War (10% plan)
Where: Southern states
When: 1865
Why/How: Southerners who swore allegiance to the U.S. were pardoned. Former Confederate states could set up a state government. States would ratify the 13th Amendment. States could hold elections after ratifying the 13th Amendment.
Radical Reconstruction
Who/What: Radical Republicans who favored a much tougher stance with Confederate States
Where: Southern states
When: Reconstruction Act of 1867
Why/How: Southern states would be under military rule. States had to hold new state constitutional conventions. African Americans will be allowed to vote. Southerners who supported the Confederacy will not be allowed to vote (temporarily). Equal rights for African Americans. South had to ratify the 14th Amendment.
tenant farmers
Who/What: renting land
Where: South
When: Reconstruction
Why/How: farmers paid rent to farm the land and owned the crops they grew
sharecropping
Who/What: sharing land
Where: South
When: Reconstruction
Why/How: family farmed a part of the landowners land in return for housing and a share of the crop (ways to keep African Americans disenfranchised in the South)
Morehouse College
Who/What: school to train African-American men to be ministers or teachers (Atlanta Baptist Seminary/Atlanta Baptist College)
Where: Atlanta, GA
When: 1867/1913
Why/How: most prestigious African-American college (“black Harvard”) renamed Morehouse College in 1913.
Freedmen’s Bureau
Who/What: created by Congress
Where: South
When: 1865
Why/How: 1st federal relief agency- provided food, clothing, medical attention, education, and land to African Americans coming out of slavery.
13th Amendment
Who/What: Civil War Amendment
Where: Congress
When: 1865
Why/How: ended slavery throughout the nation
14th Amendment
Who/What: Civil War Amendment
Where: Congress
When: 1868
Why/How: made African Americans citizens of each state and the nation
15th Amendment
Who/What: Civil War Amendment
Where: Congress
When: 1870
Why/How: gave black men the right to vote
black codes
Who/What: laws for blacks in the South
Where: Southern states
When: late 1860’s
Why/How: laws that limited the rights of freed blacks so much so; that they were basically still slaves (will eventually become Jim Crow laws)
Ku Klux Klan
Who/What: A secretive organization whose members dressed in hooded white robes.
Where: South
When: during Reconstruction
Why/How: they used violence against blacks throughout the remainder of the 19th and much of the 20th century.
impeachment of Andrew Johnson
Who/What: 1st president to be impeached
Where: House of Representatives/ tried by the Senate
When: 1868
Why/How: Johnson tried to fire Secretary of War Edwin Stanton because he favored the Radical Republicans, but this violated the Tenure of Office Act which limited the president’s power to hire and fire government officials. The Senate voted to keep him in office by one vote.
Effect of steel as big business
Who/What: Andrew Carnegie
Where: Northern cities
When: 1850’s
Why/How: Carnegie used the Bessemer Steel making process (a process where manufacturers could make steel easier and cheaper) – this helped to create big business. (one of the robber barons)
Transcontinental Railroad
Who/What: Chinese laborers
Where: West
When: 1862/1869
Why/How: Congress coordinated an effort among the railroad companies to build a railroad “stretching the continent”. Union Pacific and Central Pacific joined their tracks at Promontory Point, Utah in 1869.
John D. Rockefeller
Who/What: John Rockefeller made it big in the oil business.
Where: North
When: 1870’s
Why/How: His company, Standard Oil, was the nation’s first trust. He was able to dictate prices, eliminate competition, and control the U.S. oil industry. He used vertical and horizontal integration. (Vertical- a business strategy in which one corporation owns not only the company that produces the finished product, but also the companies that provide the materials necessary for production. Horizontal- the merging of companies together.)
Trusts and Monopolies
Who/What: Trusts serve to destroy competition and create monopolies.
Where: North
When: 1870’s
Why/How: Once a monopoly (a market in which there is only one supplier of a product and no market competition), the companies could control everything like prices, competition, etc… (Sherman Anti-trust Act will put an end to the monopolies)
Thomas Edison
Who/What: inventor
Where: New York/North
When: 1877
Why/How: He invented the phonograph which recorded sound. He invented the motion picture camera that would make movies possible. He invented the electric light bulb and transformed the way people lived.
Ellis Island
Who/What: A tiny island near the Statue of Liberty.
Where: New York
When: 1892
Why/How: The federal government opened Ellis Island. It became a well-known reception center for immigrants arriving by ship. As more and more people immigrated to the U.S., the nation became known as a “melting pot”.
Samuel Gompers and the American Federation of Labor
Who/What: Man who began to challenge the working and living conditions that faced industrial workers.
Where: North
When: late 1800’s
Why/How: The AFL was a labor union that focused on wages, working hours, and working conditions. The AFL used the pressure of strikes and boycotts. They also used collective bargaining (a process by which employees negotiate as a united group rather than individuals).
Sitting Bull and Wounded Knee
Who/What: A leader of the Sioux tribe/the last notable armed conflict between U.S. troops and natives.
Where: West
When: 1890
Why/How: The government believed that Sitting Bull was using the Ghost Dance to start a Native American uprising, so they sent in the U.S. Army to arrest Sitting Bull. A shot rang out which started a gun battle, killing 150 native Americans including Sitting Bull. (they were unarmed)
1894 Pullman Strike
Who/What: George Pullman/ railroad car industrialists/union workers
Where: North
When: 1894
Why/How: Workers went to George Pullman to protest the laying off of workers. Pullman responded by firing three of the labor representatives, which led to the local union to go on strike. Pullman then closed the plant rather than negotiate with the union leaders. Eugene Debs called for a boycott of Pullman cars nationwide. The strike affected the shipment of U.S. mail so the government stepped in. The strike was over. The Pullman strike established precedence for factory owners appealing to the courts to end strikes. (1st time government intervened in big business)
Upton Sinclair/The Jungle
Who/What: Socialist who wrote a book exposing the meat packing industry.
Where: North
When: 1906
Why/How: He was a muckraking journalist (those who exposed wrong doing) that exposed the filthiness of the meat packing industry. This led to the passage of the Meat Inspection Act of 1906 and the Pure Food and Drug Act.
Jane Addams/Hull House
Who/What: “mother of social work”
Where: Chicago, IL
When: early 1900’s
Who/What: The Hull House was a settlement house established in a poor neighborhood in Chicago that offered assistance to immigrants and underprivileged citizens. (poor)
Jim Crow Laws
Who/What: Laws that required segregation of blacks and whites in the South
Where: South
When: From Reconstruction until the Civil Rights Movement
Why/How: Blacks and whites were not allowed to share public spaces. They could not sit in the same dining rooms, railway cars, and were restricted from using the same public facilities.
Plessy v. Ferguson
Who/What: The case involved a 30 year old man named Homer Plessy. He was 1/8 African American and violated the Louisiana law by sitting in a whites only railway car.
Where: Louisiana/Supreme Court
When: 1896
Why/How: He sued. The Supreme Court said segregation was lawful as long as the separate facilities were equal. (separate but equal) Will be overturned by Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.
NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People)
Who/What: W.E.B. DuBois was instrumental in founding the NAACP. It was an organization that devoted itself to the progress of the African American community.
Where: North
When: 1909
Why/How: It called for social reform and is a prominent political voice among the African American community.
Ida Tarbell
Who/What: revealed the abuses of the Standard Oil trust.
Where: North
When: early 1900’s
Why/How: Her writings about Standard Oil called for reforms in U.S. business and campaigns against monopolies.
initiative
Who/What: political reform/voter reform
Where: United States
When: early 1900’s
Why/How: allowed citizens of a state to force a vote on a certain issue without having to wait for public officials to bring it up.
referendum
Who/What: political reform/voter reform
Where: United States
When: early 1900’s
Why/How: the principle or practice of submitting to popular vote a measure passed on or proposed by a legislative body or by popular initiative; a vote on a measure so submitted
recall
Who/What: political reform/voter reform
Where: United States
When: early 1900’s
Why/How: gave citizens the power to hold special elections to remove corrupt officials from office before their terms were up.
direct election of Senators
Who/What: 17th Amendment/progressive amendment
Where: United States
When; 1913
Why/How: the public believed government officials were corrupt because it was easy for people to gain political office through favors and corrupt dealings behind closed doors rather than having to win the support of the people. The 17th Amendment stated that U.S. Senators would now be elected by the people, rather than by state legislatures.
Chinese Exclusion Act
Who/What: law much like the Gentlemen’s Agreement (Japan) that limited the immigration of the Chinese (nativism)
Where: United States/Western U.S. /San Francisco
When: 1882
Why/How: Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act which prohibited further immigration from China for 10 years. This act continued until 1943.
Spanish American War
Who/What: United States/Spain/Cuba
Where: United States/Cuba
When: 1898
Why/How: Cuba rebelled against Spanish rule. Spain was sending Cubans to concentration camps. Newspaper stories were printed (yellow journalism) to exaggerate stories about what was really going on in Cuba. War began with the sinking of the USS Maine. U.S. helped Cuba gain their independence. Cuba would remain independent. Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines became U.S. territories.
war in the Philippines
Who/What: U.S. territory after the Spanish American war
Where: Philippines
When: 1902
Why/How: many Americans didn’t understand the need to gain the Philippines as a territory. They joined the Anti-Imperialist League which opposed U.S. expansion. Guerilla warfare broke out against the U.S. in the Philippines. The U.S. backed forced captured the Philippines in 1902 and the Philippines won’t become and independent nation until 1946.
Roosevelt Corollary
Who/What: statement which expanded upon the Monroe Doctrine/Teddy Roosevelt
Where: United States
When; 1904
Why/How: Roosevelt said the United States has a right to intervene in the region if a nation had trouble paying its debts. (“Big Stick Diplomacy”) The U.S. did not intend to be a threatening presence in the Western Hemisphere, but it would not hesitate to forcefully protect its own interests.
Panama Canal
Who/What: Theodore Roosevelt/Panama
Where: Panama
When: 1905-1914
Why/How: Roosevelt helped the Panamanians achieve their independence from the Colombians. The Panamanians allowed the U.S. to lease the land needed for the canal. (connected Atlantic Ocean to Pacific Ocean- shortcut-important for trade)
movement from neutrality to World War I
Who/What: Woodrow Wilson/United States
Where: Europe/United States
When: 1917
Why/How: U.S. has always had a policy of isolationism (staying out of international conflicts). Unrestricted submarine warfare, the sinking of the Lusitania and the Zimmerman note were all reasons the U.S. became involved in World War I. It was over in 1918.
unrestricted submarine warfare
Who/What: Germany
Where: open seas
When: 1917
Why/How: The Germans agreed not to attack U.S. passenger ships, but in 1917 resumed their attacks of merchant and commercial ships. This is known as unrestricted submarine warfare. The Germans felt that they could defeat their remaining enemies before the U.S. troops could reach Europe. The Central Powers will respond with the convoy system (groups of guarded ships) to avoid the German U-boat attacks.
Great Migration
Who/What: African Americans
Where: United States/From South to North
When: During WWI
Why/How: Many African Americans began leaving the South to pursue better economic opportunities (jobs) and in hopes of escaping Southern racism.
Espionage and Sedition Acts
Who/What: Laws limiting freedom (violating 1st Amendment rights)
Where: United States
When: During WWI
Why/How: The Espionage and Sedition Acts made it illegal to interfere with the draft, obstruct the sale of Liberty Bonds, or make statements considered disloyal to, or critical of, the government, the Constitution, or the U.S. military.
Eugene Debs
Who/What: Socialist who was sentenced to 10 years in prison because of the Espionage and Sedition Acts for criticizing the U.S. government.
Where: United States
When: During WWI
Why/How: He was famous for his criticisms of the U.S. government and ran unsuccessfully for president as a candidate of the U.S. Socialist Party.
Fourteen Points
Who/What; Woodrow Wilson/wanted to establish peace and stability
Where: Peace conference in Paris, France
When: End of WWI (1918)
Why/How: Wilson put forth a peace proposal known as the “Fourteen Points”. His plan called for a reduction in armaments (weapons) and the right of self-determination (the power to govern oneself) for ethnic groups. He also proposed the League of Nations.
League of Nations
Who/What; A joint member league where countries could peacefully discuss solutions to their differences rather than go to war. Proposed by Woodrow Wilson.
Where: Around the world
When: End of WWI (1918)
Why/How: A number of nations joined the League of Nations, however, due to Woodrow Wilson’s ill health; he was not able to push it through Congress. As a result, the United States did not join the League of Nations. Isolationism grew strong again in the U.S. after the war and the Senate would not ratify the Treaty of Versailles which ended the war and sanctioned the League of Nations.
18th Amendment
Who/What: Prohibition
Where: United States
When: 1919
Why/How: The government prohibited the making, selling, or transporting of alcoholic beverages. The amendment was later repealed by the 21st Amendment.
19th Amendment
Who/What: Women’s suffrage
Where: United States
When: 1920
Why/How: Gave women the right to vote
Red Scare of the 1920’s
Who/What: A period where many in the United States became fearful of anyone who might be a communist or a threat to U.S. freedom.
Where: United States/Soviet Union
When: 1920’s
Why/How: Russia pulled out of WWI in 1917 due to the Bolshevik Revolution at home. The Bolsheviks took over and installed a socialist government that would eventually lead to a communist government. This alarmed people in the United States such as business leaders, government officials, and private citizens fearing that a revolution like this might happen in the U.S. This led to a rise in “nativism” (opposition to immigration). Congress then passed a temporary limit to the number of immigrants coming to the United States in 1924.
Henry Ford
Who/What: The first successful man to market the automobile. (sell it)
Where: United States
When: early 1900’s
Why/How: Ford relied on the assembly line to help speed up the production of cars. Ford also saw his workers as consumers. He decided to produce enough automobiles that he could afford to sell them at greatly reduced prices, thus allowing “ordinary people” to own cars. (Model T- most famous)
assembly line
Who/What: made car production easier, faster, and cheaper
Where: United States
When: 1920’s
Why/How: Ford did not invent the assembly line, he simply perfected it. He had the employees stay in one spot while the assembly line brought the parts to them. Up until that time, parts remained stationary while employees moved station to station.
1920’s radio and movies influences
Who/What: Radios and movies became a cheap form of entertainment and mass communication. (vaudevilles)
Where: United States
When: 1920’s
Why/How: Radio united the nation and molded the national culture. It transformed politics and introduced professional baseball to the masses. (Babe Ruth) Silent pictures moved to movies with sound. People wanted to wear the clothes they saw in movies and drive the cars on the screen. Hollywood was made out of the 1920’s and movie stars were created.
Louis Armstrong
Who/What: a trumpeter and singer
Where: New Orleans/Harlem, NY
When: 1920’s
Why/How: He was one of the most famous jazz musicians. Jazz found a receptive audience in both blacks and whites.
Langston Hughes
Who/What: author of memorable poetry, short stories and plays
Where: Harlem, NY
When: 1920’s
Why/How: He wrote about the black experience that reminded black Americans of their African heritage. This led to an increase in black and racial pride.
Harlem Renaissance
Who/What: A cultural movement
Where: New York City (Harlem)
When: 1920’s
Why/How: Black painters, dancers, authors and musicians produced many works of art during this time. Many became famous and crossed color boundaries. Led to an increase in black pride.
Irving Berlin
Who/What: music composer
Where: United States/Tin Pan Alley
When: 1920’s
Why/How; He composed over 3,000 songs during his career such as “God Bless America”, “White Christmas”, and “There’s No Business Like Show Business”. He was the most famous composer during the 1920’s despite the fact that he could barely read music.
Tin Pan Alley
Who/What: an important center of the music industry
Where: New York City
When” 1920’s
Why/How: The name “Tin Pan Alley” refers to the various music houses in NYC where songwriters and musicians composed and published songs. Many of these songs became national hits.
Overproduction and Under consumption
Who/What: When the market has more of a product than consumers are willing to buy and consumers reluctance to buy all that has been produced.
Where: United States
When: late 1920’s and early 1930’s
Why/How: Overproduction combined with under consumption leads to falling prices as producers try to convince consumers to pick their goods over others. This fall in prices can seriously hurt producers, raise unemployment, and hurt the economy. (one of the factors that led to the Great Depression)
Stock Market Crash of 1929
Who/What: Prices dropped drastically in the stock market
When: Black Tuesday, October 29, 1929
Where: United States
Why/How: Many who bought stock on speculation or buying on margin lost everything. Others were financially ruined as brokers and banks began to call in loans that people had no money to pay. This marked the beginning of the Great Depression. (final straw)
Great Depression
Who/What: the greatest economic crisis in U.S. History
Where: United States
When: 1930’s until WWII
Why/How: Overproduction and under consumption led to falling prices, Citizens began buying and spending more money than they saved, buying risky stocks on speculation and buying on margin (putting a little money down on a stock), and the Stock Market Crash of 1929.
Dust Bowl
Who/What: A series of storms that hit the Midwest (Great Plains) causing enormous clouds of dust to be created by the high winds.
Where: Midwest/Great Plains
When: 1930’s
Why/How: in an attempt to take advantage of high demand for products during WWI, Midwestern farmers unknowingly stripped much of the land and left it damaged by poor farming techniques. This damage combined with massive droughts (shortage of rain) left much of the Midwestern soil extremely dry and easily swept away by high winds.
widespread unemployment
Who/What: one in four U.S. citizens did not have a job. (25%)
Where: United States
When: During the Great Depression (1930’s)
Why/How: countless numbers of people became homeless. Many people had to rely on soup kitchens and breadlines that provided food for the poor in order to have anything to eat. (Al Capone- soup kitchen).
Hoovervilles
Who/What: Where many of the homeless gathered together to live in homemade shacks.
Where: large cities
When: Great Depression (1930’s)
Why/How: These makeshift villages came to be called hoovervilles, in reference to the president that the U.S. citizens blamed for the Great Depression.
Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
Who/What: Built hydroelectric dams to create jobs and bring cheap electricity to the South (which for the most part was without power)
Where: South
When: 1933
Why/How: Part of FDR’s New Deal programs. The southern Appalachians were very poor and with the TVA, became very prosperous.
Wagner Act
Who/What: Part of FDR’s SECOND New Deal
Where: United States
When: 1935
Why/How: Created a board to monitor unfair management practices such as firing workers who joined unions. It protected the right of workers in the private sector (non-government) to organize unions, engage in collective bargaining, and go on strike.
Social Security Act
Who/What: Part of FDR’s SECOND New Deal
Where: United States
When: 1935
Why/How: This act established retirement income for all workers once they reach the age of 65. It also provided benefits to certain unemployed workers. (unemployed and the elderly) Still around today.
Eleanor Roosevelt
Who/What: wife of Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Where: United States
When: 1930’s-40’s most active
Why/How: She was a social activist and worked for reforms in state government, campaigned for legislation regarding public housing, fought for the rights of working women, and supported the distribution of information about birth control. (women’s rights activist)
Huey Long
Who/What: Senator and Governor of Louisiana
Where: Louisiana/United States
When: mid 1930’s
Why/How: He advocated the redistribution of wealth and a guaranteed income of $2000 a year to each U.S. family. He was critical of FDR’s New Deal because he thought that the president had not been radical enough in using government to control the Depression.
“Court Packing Bill”
Who/What: FDR was frustrated by the Supreme Court striking down many of his New Deal programs.
Where: United States
When: 1937
Why/How: The U.S. Constitution does not specify the number of justices, so he proposed the enlarging of the Court from 9 justices to 15. This would allow him to “pack” the court with justices that were favorable to his programs.
Neutrality Act
Who/What: The United States continued to practice isolationism during the 1930’s despite war escalating in Europe and the Pacific.
Where: United States
When: 1935
Why/How: Congress passed this act which prohibited the sale of weapons to warring nations and was meant to keep the U.S. from forming alliances that might drag the nation into war.
A. Philip Randolph
Who/What: African-American leader that proposed a march on Washington
Where: Washington D.C.
When: 1941
Why/How: He wanted to protest racial discrimination in the military. President Roosevelt responded by supporting the Fair Employment Act, which prohibited discrimination in the national defense industry. This was enough so that Randolph cancelled the march.
Pearl Harbor
Who/What: U.S. Naval Base
Where: Hawaii
When: December 7, 1941
Why/How: Japanese airplanes bombed Pearl Harbor a few minutes before 8 a.m. After the attack, both houses of Congress approved a declaration of war against Japan and later against Germany and Italy.
internment camps
Who/What: Japanese-Americans/German-Americans/Italian-Americans
Where: United States (mainly on the west coast, some on the east coast)
When: 1944
Why/How: Executive Order 9066: the U.S. military forced more than 100,000 Japanese-Americans from their homes and businesses during the war and placed them in various internment camps. (believed some might be spies)
lend-lease program
Who/What: Act where the president could send aid to any nation whose defense was considered vital to the U.S. national security.
Where: United States/other countries/allies
When: 1941
Why/How: Congress passed the act after Roosevelt claimed that the U.S. must be the great arsenal of democracy. (how Roosevelt got around the Neutrality Acts)
Battle of Midway
Who/What: turning point of the War in the Pacific
Where: Midway Island in the Pacific
When: 1942
Why/How: The Japanese failed to detect the location of its enemy’s aircraft carriers and U.S. planes were able to attack the Japanese as they were attempting to load bombs onto their planes. Midway boosted the morale of the U.S. troops in the Pacific. (U.S. finally went on the offensive)
D-Day
Who/What: Operation Overlord
Where: beaches of Normandy, France
When: June 6, 1944
Why/How: The Allies (U.S., Great Britain, France, Soviet Union, China- major ones) were able to get over 500,000 troops ashore and were able to further advance into France. By August, the Allies fought their way into Paris and liberated the city from German occupation. (Axis Powers- Italy, Japan, Germany- major ones)
Fall of Berlin
Who/What: End of WWII
Where: Berlin, Germany
When: Spring of 1945/April 30, 1945/May 8, 1945
Why/How: The city of Berlin fell to the advancing Soviet army in the spring of 1945. Hitler then committed suicide rather than be captured. Germany surrendered and the Allied countries celebrated V-E Day on May 8, 1945. FDR had died on April 12 and did not live to see the end of the war right around the corner.
War at home/war mobilization
Who/What: programs going on at home to support the war effort
Where: United States
When: During WWII
Why/How: Roosevelt established the WPB (War Production Board) which re-directed raw materials and resources needed for the war. People had rationing books. Withholding of income tax from employers was introduced. War bond drives encouraged people to buy war bonds as part of their patriotic duty. People started victory gardens so that more food could be sent to feed the soldiers. Women took over the men’s jobs as they went off to war. (Rosie the Riveter)
Los Alamos
Who/What: place where the U.S. began developing the atomic bomb
Where: Los Alamos, New Mexico
When: 1945
Why/How: Harry S. Truman who became president after FDR’s death, agreed to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Los Alamos was the place where the secret project “The Manhattan Project” was developed and helped win the war over Japan. V-J Day was on August 14, 1945 after the second bomb was dropped. Truman had to defend his decision to drop the bombs saying that he had saved many American soldiers lives by making this decision.
Marshall Plan
Who/What: Secretary of State George Marshall/provided nations in war-torn Europe with much needed financial support from the United States.
Where: United States/Europe
When: After WWII (late 1940’s
Why/How: This aid served to spark economic revival and prosperity in war-torn Europe, alleviating the suffering of many people.
Truman Doctrine
Who/What: Harry Truman/United States would not hesitate to intervene and aid nations overseas to resist communism
Where: United States/Turkey and Greece
When: After WWII
Why/How: The U.S. and the West focused on containing communism with the Truman Doctrine.
communist China
Who/What: Mao Tse-tung (Zedong)
Where: China
When: 1949
Why/How: Communists won control of China in 1949. The United States refused to recognize the new government. The communists forced Chiang Kai-Shek (former leader) out of China. He and his supporters fled to Taiwan.
Korean War
Who/What: North and South Korea/United States/China
Where: Korea
When: 1950-1953
Why/How: Communist North Korean forces crossed the 38th parallel and attacked South Korea. War was fought for 3 years and ended in a stalemate (no one “won”). North Korea remained communist. South Korea remained free from communist rule.
Senator Joseph McCarthy
Who/What: Republican Wisconsin Senator
Where: United States
When: 1950’s
Why/How: McCarthyism- McCarthy was convinced that communists had infiltrated high levels of government and the U.S. military. By the time most citizens viewed the McCarthy hearings on television, they thought he was paranoid and crazy. The irrational fear of communism in the U.S. began to collapse.
Cuban Revolution
Who/What: Cuba/United States/Fidel Castro/Dwight Eisenhower
Where: Cuba
When: 1959
Why/How: The revolution, led by Fidel Castro, overthrew the Cuban government led by Fulgencio Batista and made Castro the communist leader of the country. Castro executed more than 700 of his opponents and jailed many more. President Eisenhower refused to support the new dictator and broke off diplomatic relations. Castro then allied himself with the Soviet Union.
Bay of Pigs
Who/What: Cuba/United States/Fidel Castro/John F. Kennedy
Where: Cuba
When: 1961
Why/How: John F. Kennedy approved the Bay of Pigs operation which turned out to be a failure and an embarrassment for the Kennedy administration. Cuban exiles invaded Cuba at the Bay of Pigs and were captured.
Cuban Missile Crisis
Who/What: Cuba/United States/Castro/John F. Kennedy
Where: Cuba/United States/Soviet Union
When: 1962
Why/How: Castro allowed the Soviets to put nuclear missiles in Cuba. U.S. spy planes spotted these missiles and Kennedy responded by authorizing a naval blockade of the island. Khrushchev eventually agreed to withdraw the missiles in exchange for a U.S. pledge not to invade Cuba. The U.S. also offered to remove U.S. missiles stationed in Turkey.
Vietnam War
Who/What: North Vietnam/South Vietnam/United States/France
Where: North and South Vietnam (17th parallel)
When: 1963-1975
Why/How: Vietnamese nationalists wanted independence from France. Vietnam was divided into two nations, North and South Vietnam. North Vietnam became communist. South Vietnam was not. U.S began to aid South Vietnam against the Viet Cong (rebels in South Vietnam). Fighting escalated throughout the years. South Vietnam will eventually fall to North Vietnam after the departure of U.S. troops in 1975.
Tet Offensive
Who/What: produced heavy fighting in the South Vietnamese capital of Saigon.
Where: South Vietnam
When: 1968
Why/How: The Tet offensive showed that the communists could launch a coordinated attack. It led many people to question how the U.S. government was handling the war and whether U.S. troops should be withdrawn.
baby boom
Who/What: Members of the generation born within the first few years after WWII.
Where: United States
When: 1946-1960
Why/How: With the war over, spouses were reunited and couples got married. The result was a “boom” in the number of babies born in the United States during the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. Largest generation in the United States.
Levittown
Who/What: Suburbs created by William Levitt
Where: United States
When: 1950’s
Why/How: For the first time, large numbers of “common people” could afford to buy their own homes. Developers like William Levitt became rich building entire communities of new houses. This method of building homes very quickly meant that he could sell them at a lower price.
Interstate Highway Act
Who/What: Dwight D. Eisenhower
Where: United States
When: 1956
Why/How: Concerns about a nuclear strike against the U.S. led Eisenhower to support the National Highway Act of 1956. The improved roads enabled military troops and personnel to move quicker and meant the people could evacuate cities much faster in the event of a war. It also contributed to the rise of suburbs making it easier for people to live outside the cities.
Kennedy/Nixon Presidential Debates
Who/What: John F. Kennedy/Richard Nixon
Where: United States
When: 1960
Why/How: 1st televised presidential debates. Image became important. Those that watched the debates said Kennedy won. Those who listened to them on the radio said Nixon won. The creation of television revolutionized media coverage.
impact of technology on American life
Who/What: computers/internet/cellular phones/air conditioning
Where: United States
When: post WWII
Why/How: Computers transformed business, making calculations and transactions faster and business more efficient. Cell phones allow people to speak to one another through wireless connections. Internet allows people to get and send information from almost anywhere at any time. Air conditioning revolutionized the way people live and also infiltrated the automobile industry.
news coverage of the Civil Rights movement
Who/What: African-Americans and violence on television
Where: United States (South)
When: 1950’s-1960’s
Why/How: Television coverage of the violence often inflicted on African Americans played a major role in winning support for the cause of the Civil Rights movement.
Sputnik I
Who/What: first artificial satellite to orbit the Earth
Where: space/Soviet Union
When: 1957
Why/How: Sputnik revealed the superiority in Soviet technology and greatly concerned the U.S. The U.S. believed that this same technology could be used to launch nuclear missiles. Beginning of the “space race.”
NASA
Who/What: Dwight Eisenhower’s response to Sputnik I
Where: space/United States
When: 1958
Why/How: After the launch of Sputnik I, Congress passed the National Defense Education Act which provided aid for education and was geared toward boosting the study of math, science, and foreign languages.
integration of the U.S. military
Who/What: Harry Truman
Where: United States
When: 1948
Why/How: Northern Democrats supported Truman and wanted to be more aggressive about passing civil rights acts. Southern Democrats were outraged. Despite his opposition in the South, Truman integrated the military and by 1954, the last of the segregated military units were abolished.
Jackie Robinson
Who/What: First African-American during the modern era to play baseball in the Major Leagues.
Where: Brooklyn, NY (Brooklyn Dodgers)
When: 1947
Why/How: Robinson endured threats and racially-based insults from fans, opposing players, and even his own teammates. He won the first ever Rookie of the Year Award. He won the respect of his team and the admiration of many fans.
Brown v. Board of Education
Who/What: Supreme Court case that reversed Plessy v. Ferguson
Where: United States
When: 1954
Why/How: The NAACP sued the Board of Education in Topeka, Kansas because it would not let a black girl, Linda Brown; attend an all-white school near her home. The Supreme Court ruled that racial segregation in public schools is unconstitutional.
Letter from a Birmingham Jail
Who/What: written by Martin Luther King Jr. while in jail in Birmingham, AL
Where: Birmingham, AL
When: April 1963
Why/How: His letter was a response to several white ministers who wrote a statement arguing that the battle for civil rights should be waged in the courts rather than by protests. King’s public response expressed the reasons why he disagreed and proclaimed that civil disobedience (peaceful refusal to follow unjust laws) was a necessary and acceptable method for achieving equality.
I Have a Dream Speech
Who/What: Martin Luther King, Jr.
Where: Washington D.C.
When: 1963
Why/How: The federal government knew that it could not afford to have foreign nations view the U.S. as unjust or a land of racial hatred. King shined in his speech about what he felt his dream for America to be like. The “march” consisted of 200,000 civil rights activists demanding equality for all citizens.
Civil Rights Act of 1964
Who/What: Started by John F. Kennedy/finished by Lyndon B. Johnson
Where: United States
When: 1964
Why/How: Johnson pushed through Kennedy’s plan of civil rights which prohibited segregation in public accommodations and discrimination in education and unemployment.
Voting Rights Act of 1965
Who/What: Lyndon B. Johnson
Where: United States
When: 1965
Why/How: President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act which authorized the president to suspend literacy tests for voter registration and to send federal officials to register voters in the event that county officials failed to do so. Led to a huge increase in African-American voter registration.
Warren Court
Who/What: Chief Justice Earl Warren
Where: United States
When: 1953-1969
Why/How: The transformation of the United States socially was due to an increased willingness by the U.S. Supreme Court to use its power to bring about that change. Earl Warren was the chief justice. This court made landmark decisions concerning separation of church and state, free speech, and civil rights.
Miranda v. Arizona
Who/What: A Mexican immigrant, Ernesto Miranda, was arrested and interrogated by police without the presence of a lawyer.
Where: Arizona
When: 1966
Why/How: He confessed to the crimes of kidnapping and rape. His lawyers appealed and it went all the way to the Supreme Court which created the Miranda Rule, which states that law enforcement agencies must inform anyone they arrest of their rights.
assassination of John F. Kennedy
Who/What: John F. Kennedy/Lee Harvey Oswald
Where: Dallas, TX
When: November 22, 1963
Why/How: After the march on Washington, President Kennedy proposed new civil rights laws. He never got to see them fulfilled because on a trip to Texas, Lee Harvey Oswald shot and killed the president as he rode in an open car with his wife, Jackie Kennedy, and the governor of Texas.
assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.
Who/What: Martin Luther King, Jr. /James Earl Ray
Where: Memphis, TN
When: April 4, 1968
Why/How: An assassin gunned down Dr. King while on the balcony of a hotel in Memphis, TN. This left others to carry out the plans for civil rights in his place.
assassination of Robert Kennedy
Who/What: Robert Kennedy/Sirhan Sirhan (a young Palestinian)
Where: California
When: 1968
Why/How: After he finished his victory speech after winning the California primary, a young Palestinian stepped forward in the crowd and shot him at close range. Kennedy died soon after. The nation moved ahead with a sense of concern and uncertainty.
Democratic National Convention of 1968
Who/What: Radicals and protestors
Where: Chicago, IL
When: 1968
Why/How: President Johnson was not running for re-election (due to the Vietnam War) and now Robert Kennedy was dead. Massive demonstrations got out of hand after convention delegates voted against a Vietnam peace resolution and it became clear that Hubert Humphrey would be nominated for president. Police began clubbing those involved in the rally while television cameras caught most of the violence. This would lead to many viewing the Democratic Party as “unstable” and would eventually help Richard Nixon get elected in 1968.
Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)
Who/What: Students from North Carolina
Where: Raleigh, North Carolina and throughout the South
When: 1960
Why/How: These students dedicated themselves to the use of non-violent protests to demand civil rights for African Americans. Their most famous protest was the “sit-in”. They will eventually turn to violence as the civil rights movement heats up.
Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)
Who/What: Created by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Where: United States (South)
When: late 1950’s
Why/How: The Montgomery Bus Boycott (Rosa Parks) gave birth to the SCLC. It sought to unite leaders from the black community in the cause of civil rights. The SCLC believed that if it could educate average African American citizens and get the right candidates elected to public office; it could successfully bring about the end of segregation and inequality.
sit-ins
Who/What: used mainly by the SNCC
Where: United States (South)
When: 1960’s
Why/How: These were nonviolent protests in which blacks sat in segregated places until they were arrested. The most famous was in Greensboro, NC when 4 black college students sat at a “whites only” lunch counter and when management asked them to leave, they refused.
freedom rides/freedom riders/freedom summer
Who/What: Congress of Racial Equality (CORE)
Where: from Washington D.C. through the South
When: 1961 (founded in 1942
Why/How: The Supreme Court had ruled in 1960 that segregation was illegal in bus stations, so in the summer of 1961, “Freedom Riders” boarded a bus in Washington D.C. and traveled south. After the bus reached Anniston, AL, a mob attacked the bus and set it on fire. They beat the passengers. They raised much awareness and drew national attention to civil rights.
National Organization of Women (NOW)
Who/What: Betty Friedan
Where: United States
When: 1963
Why/How: Friedan founded the National Organization for Women which devoted itself to political activism and promoting feminist causes. (“Women’s lib”)
anti-Vietnam War movement
Who/What: College students/those opposed to war
Where: United States
When: late 1960’s/early 1970’s
Why/How: many college students took up the cause for the anti-Vietnam movement. They burned draft cards and held sit-ins to protest the war. They demanded that the government take radical steps to deal with poverty, inequality, and to end the war in Vietnam.
United Farm Workers Movement (UFM)
Who/What: Cesar Chavez
Where: California
When: 1962
Why/How: It supported the rights of migrant farm workers, many of which were poor Hispanic immigrants. They used the same non-violent protests that MLK, Jr. used. Chavez went to great lengths to improve the conditions of migrant farm workers. It eventually led to a 1970 labor agreement.
Rachel Carson
Who/What: author of Silent Spring/a book about the dangers of pesticides
Where: United States
When: 1962
Why/How: She argued that mankind’s use of pesticides was poisoning the environment. It led to the banning of DDT (a common pesticide) and more government restrictions on various chemicals. This led to the environmentalism movement.
Earth Day
Who/What: Richard Nixon administration/environmentalists
Where: United States
When: April 22, 1970
Why/How: Despite the Republicans nonsupport of environmentalist issues, President Nixon agreed with the support for Earth Day which became an annual event to encourage concern for the environment and draw attention to environmental issues.
creation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Who/What: Richard Nixon administration
Where: United States
When: 1970
Why/How: President Nixon established the EPA as a federal agency for the purpose of enforcing laws aimed at maintaining a safe and clean environment
Barry Goldwater
Who/What: a movement towards conservatism
Where: Orange County, CA/deep South
When: 1964
Why/How: Some people were becoming concerned with the increasing role of the federal government. Conservatism is the belief that government should not try to regulate too much (deregulation). Conservatives would rather keep taxes low and have a government that does as little as possible. Conservatives resented the fact that their hard-earned money was being taxed to support others whom they viewed as lazy and unwilling to work for a living. Barry Goldwater furthered this movement by running for president in 1964. (Ronald Reagan will work with him on his campaign)
Opening of China under Richard Nixon
Who/What: Richard Nixon/Chairman Mao/China
Where: United States/China
When: 1970’s
Why/How: Nixon introduced a policy of détente (cooling off period) for the United States and communist nations. He sought to use diplomacy rather than intimidation to ease tensions. He became the first president to publicly acknowledge the communist government of China and visited China during his first term. He believed that good relations with China would give him more bargaining power with the Soviets.
Watergate
Who/What: Richard Nixon/ Watergate office complex/campaign to re-elect the president
Where: Democratic National Headquarters
When: re-election 1972
Why/How: Nixon’s committee to re-elect the president secretly wiretapped offices of the DNC at the Watergate office complex. Reporters from the Washington Post (Woodward and Bernstein) gained secret information to reveal that the scandal went all the way to the president. When Nixon refused to turn over the White House tapes, the Supreme Court ruled that the president is not above the law and he must turn over the tapes. Nixon will eventually resign the presidency due to the Watergate scandal.
Gerald Ford
Who/What: Nixon’s vice-president/will become president after Nixon resigns
Where: United States
When: 1974
Why/How: Nixon’s first vice-president, Spirow T. Agnew, resigned earlier due to tax evasion. Nixon appointed Gerald Ford as president. He will become the only president to serve that was not elected by the people. He will eventually pardon Nixon for his Watergate crimes.
Roe v. Wade
Who/What: Right to privacy/abortion
Where: United States
When: 1973
Why/How: Prior to 1973, states could outlaw or restrict abortions during a woman’s presidency. Citing an implied right to privacy, the Supreme Court ruled state laws restricting a woman’s right to an abortion during the first 3 months of pregnancy to be unconstitutional.
Regents of California v. Bakke
Who/What: Allan Bakke/University of California at Davis
Where: California
When: 1973-74
Why/How: (Reverse) Discrimination/Affirmative action case. Affirmative action is a policy aimed at increasing minority representation in the workplace, educational institutions, and social settings by imposing guidelines requiring the hiring or acceptance of minority candidates, or actively pursuing such candidates. Allan Bakke applied to medical school and was not accepted either time. He believed that his qualifications were superior to several of the minority candidates that applied. The Supreme Court ruled that racial quotas is a violation of the 14th amendment’s equal protection clause.
Camp David Accords
Who/What: Jimmy Carter/Israel/Egypt (peace agreement)
Where: Camp David, Maryland
When: 1978
Why/How: President Anwar Sadat shocked everyone when he flew to Israel to meet with that country’s Prime Minister, Menachem Begin. It was the first time any Arab leader had acknowledged Israel. President Carter invited them to Camp David to continue their talks. Both ended up signing the peace agreement. The agreement called for a peace treaty between the two nations and meant that Israel would withdraw from territories taken during the Yom Kippur War.
Iranian Revolution
Who/What: Shah (king of Iran)/Iranian radicals
Where: Iran
When: 1979
Why/How: Iranians wanted to get back to a strict Muslim law and were afraid Iran was becoming too “westernized”. This revolution forced the Shah to flee and an Islamic cleric, Ayatollah Khomeini took over the country.
Iranian hostage crisis
Who/What: President Carter/Iranian radicals
Where: Iran/U.S. Embassy
When: 1979
Why/How: The Iranian radicals were upset that President Carter had allowed the Shah to enter the U.S. to undergo cancer treatment. An Iranian mob stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and took all those inside hostage. The Iranians demanded that the U.S. government hand over the Shah to stand trial. This crisis lasted the remainder of Carter’s presidency. Carter refused to surrender the Shah and attempted diplomatic negotiations. The two sides will finally reach an agreement to release the hostages on the day Ronald Reagan will take the oath of office as the new president of the United States. The Shah will die in late 1980.
Reaganomics
Who/What: Ronald Reagan’s conservative economic policy
Where: United States
When: 1980’s
Why/How: Reagan believed the economy would be stimulated and would recover the quickest if the supply of goods increased. He backed policies and supported corporate tax cuts designed to benefit producers. This is known as the “trickle-down theory”. It advocated that the benefits felt by business owners would eventually “trickle down” to consumers and the average working class.
Iran-Contra scandal
Who/What: Ronald Reagan administration
Where: United States/Iran/Nicaragua
When: 1980’s
Why/How: Nicaragua was ruled by a pro-Soviet government known as the Sandinistas. To counter the Sandinistas, the United States secretly provided training and support for Nicaraguan rebels known as the Contras. Congress cut off funding when it learned of these operations, claiming that such actions violated U.S. neutrality laws. Some of those in the Reagan administration decided to find other means by which to help the Contras. In exchange for help securing the release of U.S. hostages held in Lebanon, the U.S. arranged to secretly sell arms to Iran. The profits were used to fund the Contras. Reagan claimed to have no knowledge of the arrangement and no evidence was produced to suggest that he did.
Collapse of the Soviet Union
Who/What: Reagan/Bush/Gorbachev (U.S. and Soviet relationships)
Where: Berlin/Soviet Union/Berlin Wall
When: 1989
Why/How: Gorbachev realized that the hurting Soviet economy could not sustain an arms race with the U.S. any longer. President Reagan challenged Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall. On November 9, 1989, the East German government announced that people could travel freely to West Berlin. Germans started tearing down the wall with sledgehammers and anything else they could find. Thus, the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the “iron curtain”.
Congress and Bill Clinton
Who/What: Bill Clinton/Newt Gingrich/Republican controlled Congress
Where: United States
When: 1994
Why/How: Clinton was elected president in 1992. The Republicans won control over both the House and the Senate forcing President Clinton to work with Congress. A huge showdown between Clinton and Newt Gingrich (Speaker of the House) occurred in 1995 over proposed budget cuts. The two sides could not reach a compromise, so the federal government temporarily shut down. It wasn’t until the spring of 1996 that they could reach an agreement. This turned out to be an advantage for Clinton, because the American people accused Congress of the government shutdown.
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
Who/What: Bill Clinton/United States/Canada/Mexico
Where: United States/Canada/Mexico
When: 1990’s
Why/How: NAFTA promoted free trade and lowered trade barriers between the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
Impeachment of Bill Clinton
Who/What: Bill Clinton/Republicans/Monica Lewinski
Where: United States
When: 1996-1998
Why/How: Clinton was impeached based on the fact that he lied under oath (perjury) about a relationship that he had with a former White House intern named Monica Lewinski. The Republicans in the House of Representatives went after Clinton based on this, but the Senate failed to convict. Clinton remained in office. He will forever be known for this scandal.
2000 Presidential Election
Who/What: George W. Bush/Al Gore
Where: United States/Florida
When: 2000
Why/How: The closest election in U.S. History. Popular vote was won by Al Gore, but he failed to reach the magic 270 number to win the Electoral College. Florida would be the swing state to decide the vote. Many voters thought their votes didn’t count or they did not know who to vote for based on the ballots. The case went to the Supreme Court and they decided 5-4 to stop future recounts and with that decision, George W. Bush won Florida and became president.
George W. Bush’s response to 9/11
Who/What: George W. Bush
Where: United States
When: 2001
Why/How: George Bush had not been in office 8 months when the terrorist attacks happened. He created a new government department for the purpose of preparing and protecting the nation against future terrorist attacks. (The Department of Homeland Security). It increased airline security and instituted a color coded terrorist alert system. He also signed the U.S. Patriot Act which increased the authority of U.S. law enforcement agencies and allowed them greater latitude in what measures they used to obtain information.
War against terrorism
Who/What: United States/Islamic terrorists
Where: United States/Middle East
When: 2000’s
Why/How: It was confirmed that Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden were responsible for the attacks of 9/11. In October of 2001 the U.S. launched Operation Enduring Freedom where troops from a number of nations worked with Afghani insurgents to carry out the operation to destroy the government that offered a safe haven to Al-Qaeda and bring bin Laden to justice. Today, international troops remain in Afghanistan, rebuilding the country, supporting the new government, battling pockets of resistance, and continuing the search for terrorists.
interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq
Who/What: United States/Afghanistan/Iraq
When: 2000’s
Where: United States/Afghanistan/Iraq
Why/How: In 2003, the U.S. launched the War in Iraq based on intelligence that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (weapons designed to kill large numbers of people). In 21 days, the military forces brought down the government of Saddam Hussein, but no weapons of mass destruction were found. Bush and his supporters claim that it is essential for U.S. forces to remain until Iraq’s government is stable enough to ward off the threat of Islamic radicals. Critics say we need to focus more attention on Afghanistan.