The results of the 1860 presidential election The secession of the southern states



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Component 1 - The Origins of the Civil War, 1846-1861 – Lessons and Activities Overview
Key question #4 – Why did the Civil War begin in April 1860?

Key Content –

  1. The results of the 1860 presidential election

  2. The secession of the southern states

  3. The leadership of Lincoln

  4. The leadership of Jefferson Davis


PART ONE AND TWO – The results of the 1860 Presidential Election and the secession of the southern states - Why did victory for Lincoln lead to secession?

  • Browning pp31-36

1. Written task: Using the uselectionatlas.org website as a starting point, produce a script for a podcast/news clip on the results of the 1860 election. http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS/national.php?year=1860


2. Record your podcast or make a YouTube video in the style of an ‘election night’ program.
3. Research / homework task: Read and summarise the Historical Debate (pp 34-35) on how the true causes of the Civil War. Answer question #3 on page 37 of the Browning text.
4. Class Discussion: Did President Lincoln’s election make the Civil War inevitable?
PART THREE AND FOUR – The leadership of Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis.
1. Research task: In pairs, learners research the motivations and actions of Lincoln and Davis in the period leading up to, and the early stages of, the war. Together produce a timeline, to clearly show the actions of each.
2. Read and summarise some of the ideas on the debate.org website on who was the better president and some strengths and weaknesses of each. https://www.debate.org/debates/Abraham-Lincoln-was-a-better-president-than-Jefferson-Davis/1/

Upon completion of all four parts of Key Question #4, you will write an in-class essay showing your understanding of the material.


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