How did the cultivation of a certain crop (name the crop) result in the diversification of societies in North America?

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Period 1: 1491-1607


  1. How did the cultivation of a certain crop (name the crop) result in the diversification of societies in North America?

  2. What were the societies in the Northwest and some areas of California like? Be sure to name a tribe to illustrate your information.

  3. What were the societies of the Great Basin and Great Plains like?

  4. What were the societies in the Northeast, Mississippi River Valley, and along the Atlantic seaboard like? Be sure to name various tribes to illustrate your information.


  1. Why did the European nations want to explore and conquer?

  2. How and why did the population in Europe change after the discovery of the new world?

  3. How did improvements and technology and changes to trade cause changes to the economies of Europe and the Americas?


  1. What were the health impacts of Spanish exploration and conquest of the Americas? How did the crops and livestock the Spanish introduced change the ways of life for the Native Americans?

  2. How did the Spanish use native labor in their colonies? Name and explain the economic system the Spanish put in place in its North American colonies.

  3. Explain how the Europeans obtained slaves from West Africa. How did they use these slaves in the New World?

  4. Describe the social structure/hierarchy of the Spanish colonies.


  1. Describe the early interactions between Europeans and Native Americans? What are some examples of how Europeans and Native Americans positively influenced each other?

  2. Why did the Europeans relationship with Native Americans change? Provide examples of how the Natives responded.

  3. Describe the debate among European religious and political leaders about how non-Europeans should be treated. How did Europeans justify their subjugation of Africans and American Indians?

Period 2: 1607-1754


  1. What were Spain’s goals for its colonies? How did it try to achieve those goals? Describe their colony’s societies.

  2. What were France’s and the Netherlands’ (Dutch) goals for its colonies? How did it try to achieve those goals? Describe their colony’s societies.

  3. What were Great Britain’s goals for its colonies? How did it try to achieve those goals? Describe their colony’s societies.


  1. What were the central elements of the Chesapeake and the Carolina colonies? What kind of economy developed there?

  2. What were the central elements of the New England colonies? What kind of economy developed there?

  3. What were the central elements of the Middle colonies? What kind of economy developed there?

  4. What were the central elements of the Southern colonies and the British West Indies? What kind of economy developed there?

  5. Describe the level of self-government Great Britain allowed of its North American colonies during this time, specifically describe the development of self-government in New England and Southern colonies.


  1. Describe the Atlantic economy that developed during this time period. What was exchange? What areas were the foci of these North American colonies?

  2. How did the continued contact between Europeans and Native communities stimulate cultural and demographic changes?

  3. How did the alliances between American Indians and the French, Dutch, British, and Spanish affect their relationships with other native tribes?

  4. How did issues including territorial settlements, frontier defense, self-rule, and trade contribute to the growing mistrust between British colonists and Great Britain?

  5. Explain the causes of British colonists’ conflicts with American Indians, such as Metacom’s War (King Philip’s War).

  6. Explain American Indian resistance to Spanish colonizing efforts in North America, especially the Pueblo Revolt. What was the effect of this revolt?

  7. How and why did the British colonies remain so English?

  8. What racial system developed in the British colonies? How was this difference from the Spanish and French?


  1. How did the presence of different religious and ethnic groups contribute to pluralism and intellectual exchange? What effect did the first Great Awakening and the Enlightenment have on these ideas?

  2. Why did the British colonies experience gradual Anglicization (becoming more English) over time?

  3. How did the British attempt to incorporate its North American colonies into its imperial system more? Why did it not succeed?

  4. How did colonial religious diversity, ideology and political beliefs contribute to resistance to imperial control?


  1. Explain how each region of the British colonies participated in the slave trade.

  2. What is chattel slavery? How did southern colonial laws influence slave’s lives?

  3. How did Africans resist the demeaning aspects of slavery?

Period 3: 1754-1800


  1. Explain why colonial rivalry between Great Britain and France intensified in the 18th century.

  2. What were the territorial effects of the French and Indian War? At what costs did the British obtain this victory?

  3. How and why did the British attempt to prevent the North American colonists from spreading westward? How did Native Americans respond to this expansion westward and the changing imperial influence in North America?


  1. With regard to the collection of taxes, direct colonial representation, an imperial authority, why did the colonists begin to unite against the British empire?

  2. On what arguments did colonial leaders base their calls for resistance to Great Britain?

  3. Explain the role of each of the following in the effort for American independence:

    1. Benjamin Franklin

    2. Laborers

    3. Artisans

    4. Women

  4. What were Great Britain’s advantages at the war’s outset? Why did the Patriot cause manage to succeed?


  1. Explain how Enlightenment ideas and philosophy influenced American political thinkers’ beliefs in hereditary privilege? How did religion influence Americans’ self-perception?

  2. What were the colonists (especially patriots) belief in government and rights? What two documents illustrate these principles clearly? Explain how they do so.

  3. How did the American Revolution influence some individuals and groups’ position on the abolition of slavery and political democracy in new state and national governments?

  4. Explain the idea of Republican Motherhood. How did it positively impact women’s role in American political culture?

  5. How did the American Revolution and the ideals of the Declaration of Independence influence France, Haiti, and Latin America?


  1. Describe the structure of the new state governments. What were the qualifications for voting and citizenship?

  2. What was the intent of the framers of the Articles of Confederation? What difficulties would arise for the Articles of Confederation following the Revolution?

  3. Describe the negotiations, collaborations, and compromises among the state delegates to form a constitution? What was the type of government system that formed as a result?

  4. Explain the compromises delegates came to regarding representation of slave states in Congress and the role of the federal government in regulating both slavery and the slave trade?

  5. Explain the differences between Anti-Federalists and Federalists? What was argued in the Federalist Papers? Why was the Bill of Rights adopted?


  1. What precedents did George Washington and John Adams establish that put the principles of Constitution into practice?

  2. How did issues regarding the following areas lead to the formation of political parties? What were these parties and who led them?

    1. Relationship between the national government and the states

    2. Economic policy

    3. Foreign policy

    4. Balance between liberty and order

  3. How did slavery become an aspect of regionalism?

  4. How did ideas about national identity find expression in works of art, literature, and architecture?


  1. What were the goals of many American Indians post-independence? What was the relationship like between Great Britain and American Indians and what effect did this have on its relationship with the United States?

  2. What effect did continued movement westward and growth of a frontier culture have on social, political, and ethnic tensions?

  3. Explain how Congress attempted to organize the westward settlements through the Northwest Ordinance and Land Ordinance in the 1780s. Assess their effectiveness.

  4. Describe how the Constitution defined the relationship between American Indians and the National government? What problems would this cause during the 1780s and 1790s?

  5. Describe the Spanish settlements in western North America. Why did those societies develop that way?


  1. What were the diplomatic challenges the United States had with Spain and Britain in the 1780s and 1790s (post-independence)?

  2. How did the war between France and Britain resulting from the French Revolution create challenges to the U.S. over free trade and foreign policy? What political disagreements developed from it?

What did Washington warn in his Farewell Address?

Period 4: 1800-1848


  1. Explain how political parties continued to debate the following issues in the early 1800s:

    1. Tariffs

    2. Powers of the federal government

    3. Relations with European powers

  2. How did the Supreme Court establish the judicial branch as the primary determiner of the Constitution? How did it assert that federal laws took precedence over state laws? Be sure to mention specific court cases.

  3. Explain why Jacksonian Democrats and Clay’s Whigs formed in the 1820s and 1830s regarding disagreements about the following:

    1. The role and powers of the federal government

    2. The national bank

    3. Tariffs

    4. Federal funding of internal improvements

  4. How did regional interests influence political leaders’ positions on slavery and economic policy?


  1. What were the causes and effects of the Second Great Awakening?

  2. Describe how American elements, European influences, and regional cultural sensibilities combined to make the unique American culture that developed in the early 1800s.

  3. Explain how liberal social ideas and Romantic beliefs in human perfectibility influenced literature, art, philosophy, and architecture.

  4. How did enslaved blacks and free African Americans try to protect their dignity and change their status?


  1. What were the goals of voluntary organizations? How did they try to achieve those goals?

  2. What strategy did early abolitionists use to free more slaves in the North? What strategy did early abolitionists use to try to gain freedom in the South? What were the results of these strategies?

  3. What were the goals of the women’s rights movements? How did they try to reach those goals? What event was the culmination of these efforts and ideals in the antebellum period?


  1. Define the Market Revolution and explain how the Market Revolution came to be.

  2. Describe the innovations which increased production efficiency.

  3. What role did the government play in the creation of regional interdependence, which was a characteristic of the Market Revolution? Why did the Midwest and Northeast become more closely connected than either region was with the South?


  1. How did the Market Revolution change how Americans supported their families?

  2. How did the Market Revolution influence the standard of living and social classes in the United States?

  3. How did gender and family roles change in response to the Market Revolution?


  1. Explain international migration into Northern cities and internal migration westward.

  2. How did Southern cotton production promote the development of national ties with the North and international commercial ties?

  3. Explain how decisions by Southern business leaders during the Market Revolution contributed to the growth of a distinctive Southern regional identity.

  4. Explain the plans to unify the U.S. economy, like the American System. Why did some oppose these plans?


  1. How did the United States government seek influence and control over North America through the following:

    1. Exploration

    2. Military actions

    3. American Indian Removal

    4. Monroe Doctrine

  2. How did Americans on the frontier view their frontier expansions? How did the American Indians respond to frontier settlements? Explain the subsequent wars and federal efforts to control and relocate American Indian populations.


  1. Why did plantation owners move from the Southeast to the west of the Appalachian Mountains? What happened to the institution of slavery?

  2. How did opinions about slavery in the North and South change?

  3. What were the congressional attempts to compromise between opponents and defenders of slavery? What were the effects of these attempts at compromise?

Period 5: 1844-1877


  1. How did each of the following lead to increased migration to and settlement in the West?

    1. The desire for access to natural and mineral resources

    2. Hope for economic opportunities

    3. Religious Refuge

  2. What is Manifest Destiny? What was it based on? How did it influence political debates in the mid 1800s?

  3. Explain how the following issue flared up because of the Mexican American War:

    1. Status of slavery

    2. American Indians

    3. Mexicans

  4. How did government efforts (specifically legislation) promote Westward migration and development?

  5. Why did the U.S. want to create more ties with Asian countries? How did it attempt to make these connections economically, diplomatically, and through cultural initiatives?


  1. Describe the reasons for international immigration to the United States in the decades prior to the Civil War. Where did these immigrants mostly come from? Describe how they settled when they arrived in the U.S.

  2. Why were nativists opposed to these immigrants? What were the nativists’ goals?


  1. Explain the different labor systems that developed in the North and South. Explain how the position of the free-soil movement reflect one of the reasons why Northerners opposed slavery.

  2. Explain the variety of strategies white and African American abolitionists used against slavery.

  3. How did defenders of slavery defend the institution as a positive good?


  1. Explain how the issue of slavery flared up because of the new western territories from the Mexican Cession.

  2. What compromises were attempted concerning slavery in the mid-1800s? What were the results of these compromises?

  3. How did slavery and anti-immigrant nativism weaken loyalties to the two major parties. Why was the Second Party System replaced by sectional parties like the Republican Party in the North?

  4. Why did Southern leaders decide to secede from the Union in 1860? Describe the decision to secede from the Union in the Southern legislatures. What was the result of this decision?


  1. How did the North and South mobilize for war? How were these policies viewed on the home front?

  2. What was Lincoln and most Union supporters original reason for fighting the Civil War? What was the Emancipation Proclamation and how did it change the purpose of the war? What effects did the Emancipation Proclamation have on the war’s outcome?

  3. How did Lincoln try to reunify the country? What did he say about slavery and American ideals in his Gettysburg Address?

  4. Analyze the reasons for Union victory in the Civil War.


  1. What did each of the Reconstruction Amendments (13, 14, and 15) do?

  2. How did the 14th and 15th Amendments influence the women’s rights movement?

  3. What were the short term successes of Republicans in their efforts to reconstruct the South politically? Why did these efforts fail?

  4. Describe land ownership in the South after Reconstruction. What impact did sharecropping have on African Americans and whites in the South?

  5. How did each of the following progressively strip away African American rights?What was the significance of the 14th and 15th amendment in the 20th century?

    1. Segregation and violence

    2. Supreme Court decisions

    3. Local political tactics

Period 6: 1865-1898


  1. How did the government assist new markets growth in North America?

  2. How did businesses increase the production of goods?

  3. Describe the changes to real wages that occurred in this time and the changes to the gap between the rich and the poor.

  4. What methods did business leaders use to increase profits? What effect did this have on the concentration of the wealth?

  5. Where and why did American businesses and foreign policymakers look outside the U.S. borders?


  1. What were the differing opinions about laissez faire policies in terms of economic well-being.

  2. Explain the changes to the industrial workforce in this period.

  3. Describe the relationship between labor and management regarding wages and working conditions. How did workers organize locally and nationally and what tactics did they use to confront business leaders? Use one example that includes tensions between labor and management, and the government’s response, to illustrate your answer.

  4. What changes did Southern leaders call for under the “New South?” How effective were these efforts?


  1. What were the effects of improvements in mechanization in agricultures?

  2. How did farmers respond to the increasing consolidation in agricultural markets and their dependence on the railroad system?

  3. Why did the People’s Party form? What was its goals?


  1. Who were the internal and international immigrants that flocked to cities at the turn of the 20th century? Explain the causes for each group.

  2. Describe the settlement patterns of these immigrants in the cities. What were their neighborhoods like?

  3. How did Americans respond to the large influx of new immigrants? How did the new immigrants respond to their new home’s culture?

  4. What were political machines and how did they become so powerful in urban areas?

  5. Explain the causes of the growth of the middle class at this time. Why did consumer culture expand?


  1. How did each of the following influence the creation of new communities and commercial centers in the West?

    1. Building of transcontinental railroads

    2. Discovery of mineral resources

    3. Pro-economic growth government policies

  2. Why did migrants move westward?

  3. Explain the effect westward migration had on each of the following and how each would lead to conflicts among Native Americans, Mexican Americans, and white settlers.

    1. Bison populations

    2. Competition over land and resources

  4. What were the changes to the U.S. policy towards American Indians that took place at this time?

  5. How did American Indians respond to this policy?


  1. How did some social commentators justify the success of those at the top of the socioeconomic structure?

  2. Why did some business leaders argue that the wealthy should help the less fortunate and improve society. Provide examples of some of these philanthropists and their reforms.

  3. What were alternative versions for the economy and U.S. society advocated by artists and critics of the Social Gospel?


  1. How did political parties appeal to Civil War divisions? What were the major differences between the major political parties at this time? How did reformers characterize the government at this time?

  2. Explain how women attempted to achieve greater equality with men socially, educationally, and politically.

  3. What effect did the Supreme Court’s decision in Plessy v. Ferguson have on the politically and socially? How did African American reformers respond to their situation?

Period 7: 1890-1945


  1. Why did the U.S. economy become more focused on the production of consumer goods?

  2. What effect did these consumer goods have on the standard of living, personal mobility, and communication?

  3. Why were there more calls for a stronger financial regulatory system in the early 20th century?


  1. What were the goals of the progressives at the local level? How were each of the following involved in the Progressive Era Reforms?

    1. Journalists

    2. Middle and Upper Class Reformers (including women)

  2. What were the goals of the Progressives at the national level? Explain the progressive amendments.

  3. What were the similarities and differences between preservationists and conservatives in terms of their views of the federal government’s relationship with the environment and natural resources.

  4. What were causes of the divisions among Progressives over segregation, expansion of political participation, and immigration?


  1. How did FDR’s New Deal attempt to end the Great Depression?

  2. Analyze the criticism of the New Deal from each of the following points of view:

    1. Radicals

    2. Unions

    3. Populists

    4. Supreme Court

    5. Conservatives in Congress

  3. What long term effect did the New Deal reforms have regarding political realignment?


  1. How did new forms of mass media (especially the radio and cinema) contribute to the spread of national culture and awareness of regional cultures?

  2. Explain why migration led to the expression of new forms of art and literature, such as the Harlem Renaissance.

  3. Why were there official restrictions on freedom of speech during WWI?

  4. Explain each of the following 1920s cultural and political controversies:

    1. Gender roles

    2. Modernism

    3. Science

    4. Religion

    5. Race

    6. Immigration


  1. Why did immigration peak before WWI? Why and how was it so limited following the war?

  2. Why did the two world wars and the economic difficulties of the 1930s lead many Americans to migrate to urban centers?

  3. Why did African Americans migrate during and after World War I? What were their experiences like in their new regions?

  4. Why did immigration from Mexico and other parts of the Western Hemisphere increase during the first decades of the 20th century? What were the immigration policies towards these groups?


  1. What justifications did imperialists use to argue that the US was destined to expand around the globe?

  2. How did anti-imperialists argue against US expansion overseas?

  3. What were the effects of the Spanish-American War regarding acquisition of U.S. territories, involvement in the Pacific and Asia, and nationalism in the Philippines?


  1. Describe the U.S. position regarding World War I initially. Explain how Wilson justified U.S. entry into the War.

  2. How did the U.S. and the American Expeditionary Force influence the outcome of the war?

  3. Analyze Wilson’s role in postwar negotiations and why the U.S. Senate refused to ratify the Treaty of Versailles or join the League of Nations.

  4. Explain how U.S. foreign policy after WWI tried to promote a vision of international order even while maintaining U.S. isolationism.

  5. How did Americans feel about the rise of fascism and totalitarianism in Europe in the 1930s? What event changed the U.S. policy?


  1. How did Americans view the Second World War ideologically? How did revelations about Japanese wartime atrocities, Nazi concentration camps, and the Holocaust support that perception?

  2. How did the war help end the Great Depression? Explain what the United States’ greatest contributions were to the Allied victory in WWII.

  3. Describe the socioeconomic changes to the lives of women and minorities during the war. Describe the wartime experiences of Japanese Americans during the War.

  4. What were the allied advantages in WWII? What was the U.S. strategy against Japan and Germany? What effect did the atomic bomb have on the war and the ethics of such a weapon?

  5. What effect did the War have on the U.S. position in the postwar world?

Period 8: 1945-1980


  1. How did U.S. foreign policy change after WWII? What strategies did this policy rely on?

  2. How did the U.S. respond to expansionist communist ideology?

  3. Describe the fluctuations in Cold War policies and tensions.

  4. How did decolonization and nationalist movements in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East influence the Cold War alignments?

  5. How did the Cold War influence the U.S. policy towards Latin America?


  1. How did American domestic policies try to expose suspected communists?

  2. Why did the Vietnam War face more opposition than earlier anti-communist foreign policies?

  3. How did Americans respond to the large nuclear arsenal, growth of the military industrial complex, and executive power in conducting foreign and military policy?

  4. Explain how ideological, military, and economic concerns shape U.S. policy in the Middle East. What effect did the oil crisis have on the U.S.?


  1. Explain how various Civil Rights activists combatted racial discrimination during and after WWII.

  2. How did each of the following show how the three branches of the federal government were involved in desegregation?

    1. Desegregation of the armed forces

    2. Brown v. the Board of Education

    3. Civil Rights Act of 1964

  3. Why did the Civil Rights activists question the efficacy of nonviolence, especially after 1965?


  1. Analyze the legal, economic, and social equality movements of feminists and gays and lesbians.

  2. Explain the continued efforts of the Latino, American Indian, and Asian American movements to demand social and economic equality.

  3. What did advocated reveal about poverty considering the overall affluence in postwar America?

  4. What were the problems and accidents that contributed to the growing environmental movement? What government successes did this movement have?


  1. Why did social liberalism reach its height of political influence in the 1960s?

  2. Explain, in detail, Johnson’s Great Society in terms of its goals and programs. How did the Supreme Court expand civil rights and individual liberties during the 1960s?

  3. What perception did Conservatives of the 1960s have about American society and the role of the federal government? What were the Conservatives goals in the 1960s?

  4. What criticisms did the Left have about domestic and foreign policies?

  5. How did economic challenges, political scandals, and foreign policy crises affect public trust in the government?

  6. How did liberals and conservatives in the 1970s clash over social and cultural issues, the power of the federal government, race, and movements for individual rights?


  1. How did the private sector, federal spending, the baby boom, and technological developments help spur economic growth?

  2. Explain the causes of the migration of the middle class ot the suburbs and the Sun Belt? How did the Sun Belt change politically and economically as a result?

  3. How did immigration change in the 1960s, especially after the new immigration laws in 1965?


  1. Describe the mass culture that developed in the postwar years. How did artists, intellectuals and rebellious youth challenge the mass culture.

  2. How did feminists and young people of the counterculture change American culture and sexual norms?

  3. Describe the growth of Evangelical churches and organizations. How did these groups influence social activism and conservative politics?

Period 9: 1980-Present


  1. Why did Reagan’s 1980 election represent such a conservative milestone?

  2. Why did conservatives oppose many liberal domestic programs? Why did they have trouble reducing or eliminated these programs?

  3. Explain the policy debates over free-trade agreements, the scope fo the federal government social safety net, and calls to reform the U.S. financial system.


  1. How did improvements in digital communications increase economic productivity?

  2. What effects did technology innovations have on daily life, access to information, and social behaviors and social networks?

  3. How did employment sectors and union membership change at the turn of the 21st century?

  4. Describe income inequality and real wages at this time.


  1. Why did the South and West continue to grow in influence politically, economically, and culturally?

  2. Where did new immigrants come from in the late 1900s? What effect did they have on the economy?

  3. Explain the intense political and cultural debates over immigration policy, diversity, gender roles, and family structures.


  1. Analyze how Reagan asserted U.S. opposition to Communism.

  2. Explain how each of the following contributed to the Cold War’s ending:

    1. U.S. military spending

    2. Reagan’s diplomacy

    3. Political changes in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union

    4. Economic changes in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union

  3. Explain how the U.S. foreign policy changed after the Cold War ended.


  1. How did the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon affect U.S. foreign policy?

  2. How did the War on Terrorism affect the United States? Explain the questions that arose over protection of civil liberties and human rights?

  3. How did conflicts in the Middle East and concerns about climate change lead to debates about U.S. dependence on fossil fuels and the environment?

  4. Describe the U.S. position in the world at the beginning of the 21st century.

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