Although New England and the Chesapeake region were both settled largely by people of English origin, by 1700 the regions had evolved into two distinct societies. Why did this difference in development occur?
1750: American Society in the mid-18th century
Was American society, as evidence by Wethersfield, Connecticut, becoming more "democratic" in the period from 1750's to the 1780's? Discuss with reference to property distribution, social structure, politics, and religion.
1760s-1770s: Pre-Revolutionary Identity
To what extent had the colonists developed a sense of their identity and unity as Americans by the eve of the Revolution?
1780s: Articles of Confederation
"From 1781 to 1789 the Articles of Confederation provided the United States with an effective government." Using the documents and your knowledge of the period, evaluate this statement.
The debate over the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798 revealed bitter controversies on a number of issues. Discuss the issues involved and explain why these controversies developed.
1800s: Jeffersonians and Strict Constructionism
With respect to the federal Constitution, the Jeffersonian Republicans are usually characterized as strict constructionists who were opposed to the broad constructionism of the Federalists. To what extent was this characterization of the two parties accurate during the presidencies of Jefferson and Madison?
1830s: Indian Removal
"The Decision of the Jackson Administration to remove the Cherokee Indians to lands west of the Mississippi River in the 1830's was more a reformulation of the national policy that had been in effect since the 1790's than a change in that policy." Assess the validity of this generalization with reference to the moral, political, constitutional, and practical concerns that shaped national Indian policy between 1789 and the mid-1830's.
1830s: Jacksonian Democracy
Jacksonian Democrats view themselves as the guardians of the United States Constitution, political democracy, individual liberty, and equality of economic opportunity. In light of the following documents and your knowledge of the 1820's and 830's, to what extent do you agree with Jacksonian's view of themselves.
1850s: The Constitution and the Growing Split Between North and South
"By the 1850's the Constitution, originally framed as an instrument of national unity, had become a source of sectional discord and tension and ultimately contributed to the failure of the union it had created." Using the documents and your knowledge of the period 1850-1861, assess the validity of this statement.
1859: John Brown's Raid
John Brown's raid on the federal armory at Harpers Ferry, Virginia, in October 1859, involved only a handful of abolitionists, freed no slaves, and was over in two days. Although many Northerners condemned the raid, by 1863 John Brown had become hero and martyr in the North. To what extent and in what ways do the views about John Brown expressed in the documents illustrate changing North-South relations between 1859 and 1863?
To what extent was President-elect Abraham Lincoln responsible for the defeat of the Crittenden proposal on the territorial expansion of slavery.
1870s: Constitutional and Social Development
In what ways and to what extent did constitutional and social development between 1860 and 1877 amount to a revolution?
1870s: Trans-Mississippi West
To what extent did the natural environment shape the development of the West beyond the Mississippi and the lives of those who lived and settled there? How important were other factors?
1876: Women's Lives
How and why did the lives and status of Northern middle-class women change between 1776 and 1876?
1865-1900: Laissez-faire Policies
To what extent and for what reasons did the policies of the federal government from 1865 to 1900 violate the principles of laissez-faire, which advocated minimal government intervention in the economy? Consider with specific reference to the following three areas of policy:railroad land grants, control of interstate commerce, and antitrust activities.
1880-1900: Farmers' Issues
Documents A-H reveal some of the problems that many farmers in the late nineteenth century (1880-1900) saw as threats to their way of life. Using the documents and your knowledge of the period, (a) explain the reasons for agrarian discontent and (b) evaluate the validity of the farmers' complaints.
1899: Spanish-American War
Analyze the factors that influenced the Senate in ratifying the Treaty of Paris in 1899 and assess their relative significance. Your analysis and assessment should take into account the complexities and/or contradictions presented by the evidence.
1890s-1914: Expansionism and Imperialism
To what extent was late nineteenth-century and early twentieth century United States expansionism a continuation of past United States expansionism and to what extent was it a departure? use the documents and your knowledge of United States history to 1914 to construct your answer.
1877-1915: Washington and DuBois
Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois offered different strategies for dealing with the problems of poverty and discrimination faced by Black Americans at the end of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth centuries. Using the documents and your knowledge of the period 1877-1915, assess the appropriateness of each of these strategies in the historical context in which each was developed.
1890-1925: Women's Rights
To what extent did economic and political developments as well as assumptions about the nature of women affect the position of American women during the period 1890-1925?
1917-1921: Wilson & Versailles
It was the strength of the opposition forces, both liberal and conservative, rather that the ineptitude and stubbornness of President Wilson that led to the Senate defeat of the Treaty of Versailles. using the documents and your knowledge of the period 1917-1921, assess the validity of this statement.
In the twentieth century prohibition spread by states' passing local option laws, which permitted a unit of local government, such as a county, to prohibit the sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages. After an intensive campaign by the Anti-Saloon League and other prohibitionist organizations and reform groups, national prohibition was achieved by the ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment to the federal Constitution in 1919.
1920s: Traditional vs. Modern Values
The 1920's were a period of tension between new and changing attitudes on the one hand and traditional values and nostalgia on the other. What led to the tension between old and new AND in what ways was the tension manifested?
Relying on a critical evaluation of the accompanying documents, analyze the factors that probably influenced Congress to pass the Immigration Act of 1924.
1930s: Hoover and FDR
President Franklin D. Roosevelt is commonly thought of as a liberal and President Herbert C. Hoover as a conservative. To what extent are these characteristics valid?
1945: Hiroshima and the Soviet Union
The United States decision to drop an atomic bomb on Hiroshima was a diplomatic measure calculated to intimidate the Soviet Union in the post-Second-World-War era rather than a strictly military measure designed to force Japan's unconditional surrender. Evaluate this statement using the documents and your knowledge of the military and diplomatic history of the years 1939 through 1947.