Archive for October, 2009

Chapter 18 questions

Due on Tuesday, Nov. 3.

Chapter 18 Questions

1. Why did the Mexican Cession throw national politics into turmoil, and how did this turmoil weaken national unity? Describe the range of opinion regarding the extension/expansion of slavery in the wake of the Mexican War.

2. Why was the concept of popular sovereignty described as a “panacea?” Who was the “father” of this doctrine?

3. Why did Zachary Taylor receive the Whig nomination in 1848?

4. Explain the birth of the Free Soil Party and its specific reasons for attracting anti-slavery supporters. How did it act as a spoiler in 1848 and 1852?

5. Why did California avoid territorial status which was usually required before applying for statehood? Why was the admission of California potentially damaging to the interests of the South?

6. Pro-slavery Southerners had largely supported the Mexican War, and yet what was the irony regarding the probable status of most of the Cession once it was carved into states?

7. What were the problems with the Fugitive Slave Law of 1793, in Southerners’ eyes? Why did Southerners want a more stringent fugitive slave law by the 1840s, and how did they propose making the law stronger in terms of methods allowed in the pursuit of runaways?

8.  What catastrophe faced Congress in 1850? Who were the “immortal trio,” and how did they attempt to deal with this crisis?

9. Explain the main points of Daniel Webster’s “Seventh of March Speech.” (An excerpt is on the blog.)

10. What was the difference between the “Old Guard” and the “New Guard” regarding the nature of the Union and compromise to preserve it?

11. What was meant by the statement that Taylor threatened to “Jacksonize” the Texas hotheads who threatened to seize Santa Fe? (Hint: see pp. 264-5)

12. How did Taylor’s death help break the impasse?

13. What were the main provisions of the Compromise of 1850? Did anyone win?

14.  How was the new Fugitive Slave Law tipped against fairness? How did the new law backfire in the court of public opinion? Explain.

15. How many times does the word “spit show up on pp. 400-401, and what does this indicate? What were some ridiculous aspects of the election of 1852?

16. Why was the election of 1852 effectively the end of the Whig party?

17. How did Manifest Destiny cause the US to take interest in the isthmus between North  America and South America, and what other country maneuvered against US interests in the region?

18. Why did proponents of slavery turn their eye toward American expansion in the Caribbean and Central America? What were filibusters like William Walker trying to do? How was Cuba involved, in particular?

19. Compare and contrast the Treaty of Wanghia and the Treaty of Kanagawa.

20. Why was the Gadsden Purchase so important to maintain peace between North and South?

21.  How did the Kansas-Nebraska Act contradict the Missouri Compromise, and why was Stephen Douglas in favor of it?

22. How did the Kansas Nebraska Act wreck the Compromise of 1850 as well, and what were the political consequences?

The story of Santa Anna’s leg…

I swear, you can’t make this stuff up!

First, read this:

and then read this:

Finally, read this:

This is why I love history!

Questions for Chapter 17

These are due on your class’s long day– Wednesday for 5th period and Thursday for 4th and 6th.

1. How did Tyler become “the accidental president?” What effects did his ascension to the presidency have?

2. Describe the main policies of the Whig party.  Why was the Whig party frustrated in its attempts to pass much of its platform?

3. Review previous chapters to determine why Clay was called “the Great Compromiser.”  Why did he and his supporters have to continue in this trend?

4. Outline the main reasons for continued American antipathy for Britain.

5. What was the Aroostook War?

6. Describe the controversy over the Maine boundary and the terms of the Webster-Ashburton Treaty.

7. Why did Britain want Texas to remain independent?

8. Why did the US refrain from immediately annexing Texas in 1836?  What caused the US to finally seal the deal nine years later?

9. Compare the painting on p. 376 with the map on p. 325.  Was St. Louis really the “Gateway to the West?”

10. What were the main issues of the election of 1844?

11. What is a “dark horse” candidate?

12. Why did the Whigs condemn Clay as a “corrupt bargainer?”

13. How was Clay like George W. Bush?

14.  Why did the Walker Tariff increase imports?

15. What caused Britain to seek to settle the Oregon question? What do you think the phrase “54’40 or Fight!” meant?

16. Why did the US get into a war with Mexico?  Was war necessary? Justify your answer.

17. What was the Bear Flag Republic? How did it come into existence, and why was it called that?

18. Who was “Old Rough and Ready?” Who was the “Hero of Buena Vista?” Who was “Old Fuss and Feathers?”

19. What were the terms of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo?  What were the consequences of this treaty?

20. Who were the “Mexican Whigs” or “Conscience Whigs?”  Why were they called this?

21. Why did the US pay for the land in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo when they had already won the war?

22. Why does the author call the Mexican War a“blood-splattered schoolroom for the Civil War?”

23. What was the Wilmot amendment (aka Wilmot proviso)?

24. Explain the term “Santa Anna’s revenge.”


You have no doubt seen the quotes on the ceiling of the classroom and in the hallway.

I would like you to choose one quote of your own from the writers covered in Chapter 15, and illuminate it on a separate piece of paper. Try to avoid quotes which have already been posted. You may use other American writers of the period who were not covered in the text. This will be worth extra credit.

Illuminate each quote on an 8×11 piece of paper. Preference will be given to quotes which are illuminated by hand rather than on computer. Let your artistic side out! Bring these to class by Tuesday. I will give no credit for simply scrawling a saying on a piece of notebook paper. These are supposed to be well-designed as well asthought-provoking

Don’t know what “Illuminated” means? Look it up. Think “scriptorium.”

Make-up work due Monday; tests by Wednesday

All make-up work from absences (assignments) is due on Monday. If you are absent, you need to email it to me.

All quizzes and tests must be made up either before or after school by next Wednesday. No exceptions unless hospitalized.

practice MC 2 from class Friday

1.  Sexual differences were strongly emphasized in 19th century America because

A. frontier life necessitated these distinctions.

B. men were regarded as morally superior beings.

C. it was the duty of men to teach the young to be good, productive citizens.

D. the market economy increasingly separated men and women into distinct economic roles.

E. women believed this emphasis brought them greater respect.

(notes, 331)

2. Women became especially active in the social reforms stimulated by the 2nd Great awakening because

A. religious social reform legitimized their activity outside the home.

B. they refused to accept the idea that there was a special female role in society.

C. they were looking to obtain as much power as possible at the expense of men.

D. many of the leading preachers and evangelists were women.

E. they saw churches as the first institutions that needed to be reformed.

(322, 328)

3. Perhaps the slave’s greatest psychological horror, and the theme of Uncle Tom’s Cabin, was

A. slaveowners’ frequent use of the whip.

B. the enforced separation of slave families through sale.

C. the breeding of slaves.

D. having to do the most dangerous work on the plantation.

E. forcible sexual assault by slaveowners.


4. Slaves fought the system of slavery in all of the following ways EXCEPT

A. slowing down the work pace.

B. sabotaging expensive equipment.

C. stealing goods their labor had produced.

D. running away if possible.

E. refusing to get an education.

(questions, 362)

5. Most white southerners were

A. industrialists.                        D. small farmers with a few slaves.

B. mountain whites.                        E. subsistence farmers

C. plantation owners.


6. In the case of Commonwealth vs. Hunt, the supreme court of Massachusetts ruled that

A. corporations were unconstitutional.

B. labor strikes were illegal by violating the Fair Labor Act.

C.  labor unions were not illegal conspiracies.

D. the Boston Associates employment of young women was inhumane.

E. the state could regulate factory wages and working conditions.


7. In the 1790s a major transportation project linking the East to the trans-Allegheny West was the

A. Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.

B. National (Cumberland Road)

C. Erie Canal.

D. St Lawrence Seaway.

E. Lancaster Turnpike.

(notes, 310)

8. In the new national economy of the early 19th century, each region specialized in a particular economic activity: the South ____ for export; the West grew grains and livestock to feed __; and the East _________ for the other two regions.

A. raised grain, southern slaves, processed meat

B. grew cotton, immigrants, made furniture and merchant ships

C. grew cotton, eastern factory workers, made machines and textiles

D. raised grain, eastern factory workers, made furniture and tools

E. processed meat, southern slaves, raised grain


9. When the “famine Irish” came to America, they

A. moved to the West.

B. mostly became farmers.

C. moved up the economic ladder quickly.

D. mostly remained in the port cities of the Northeast.

E. formed alliances with free blacks against German immigrants.

(notes, 292)

10. The American work force in the early 19th century was characterized by

A. substantial employment of women and children in factories.

B. strikes by workers that were few in number but usually effective.

C. a general lengthening of the workday from ten to fourteen hours.

D. extensive political activity among workers.

E. reliance on the system of apprentices and masters.

(notes, 304)

5th period, please bring your books tomorrow

I may need to take a sick day, and I want to be prepared just in case. So please bring your textbooks to class, and spread the word.


Practice questions for 11-13 Test

The new two party system that emerged in the 1830s and 1840s
A. divided the nation further.
B. was seen at the time as a weakening of democracy.
C. resulted in the Civil War.
D. fulfilled the wishes of the founding fathers.
E. became an important part of the nation’s checks and balances.

One of the first lessons learned by the Jeffersonians after their victory in the election of 1800 was
A. the need to strengthen diplomatic ties with Great Britain.
B. to go off the gold standard to cause an increase in the money supply.
C. to decrease tariffs in order to make their southern supporters happy.
D. to institute an excise tax to punish westerners for their lack of support.
E. that it is easier to complain as the opposition party than to govern consistently.

As chief justice, John Marshall helped ensure that
A. states’ rights were protected.
B. the programs of Alexander Hamilton were overturned.
C. the political and economic systems were based on a strong central government.
D. both the Supreme Court and the president could declare a law unconstitutional.
E. Aaron Burr was convicted of treason.

Tecumseh argued that Indians should
A. never give control of their land to whites.
B. move west of the Mississippi River.
C. not cede control of land to whites unless all Indians agreed.
D. exchange traditional ways for European ways.
E. fight as individual tribes and maintain independence.

To guard American shores, Jefferson
A. built a fleet of frigates.            D. signed a peace treaty with Great Britain.
B. constructed coastal fortifications.        E. enlisted the aid of France.
C. constructed 200 tiny gunboats.

The “South Carolina Exposition” was
A. an attempt to destroy the Union.
B. a pamphlet that advocated manifest destiny.
C. a declaration of principles against slavery.
D. a fair celebrating the creation of Kentucky.
E. a pamphlet that advocated nullification.

Jackson and his supporters disliked the Bank of the United States for all of the following reasons EXCEPT
A. minted gold and silver coins but issued no paper money.
B. controlled much of the nation’s gold and silver
C. was a private institution.
D. foreclosed on many western farms.
E. put public service first, not profits.

The House of Representatives decided the 1824 presidential election when
A. no candidate received a majority of the vote in the Electoral College.
B. William Crawford suffered a stroke and was forced to drop out of the race.
C. the House was forced to decide using “King Caucus.”
D. widespread voter fraud was discovered.
E. Henry Clay, as speaker of the House, made the request.

As a result of the Missouri Compromise,
A. there were more free states than slave states in the Union.
B. slavery was outlawed in all states north of the 42nd parallel.
C. slavery was banned north of 36’ 30” in the Louisiana Territory.
D. Missouri was required to free its slaves when they reached adulthood.
E. there were more slave states than free states in the Union.

Possible Essay Questions– also good for review

These may be used for an essay on the test tomorrow, and they are definitely good to use to review for the test…. Enjoy these– they just cost me 160 bucks!!!!!

The Jacksonian Period (1824-1848) has been celebrated as the era of the “common man.”  To what extent did the period live up to its characterization?
Consider TWO of the following in your response:
Economic development
Reform movements

Analyze the contributions of TWO of the following in helping to establish a stable government after the adoption of the Constitution.
John Adams
Thomas Jefferson
George Washington

List and analyze the various situations that challenged American unity from 1750- 1840.

Henry Clay and the American System

Here is a very good article from this site:

Henry Clay: National Development Must Take Precedence Over Debt Payments
by Anton Chaitkin

On Feb. 2, 3, and 6, 1832, Sen. Henry Clay of Kentucky delivered a speech, entitled “In Defense of the American System, Against the British Colonial System.” Clay defended the American System of government-guided development of industry, from the attack of British agents of influence in northern and southern states.
Henry Clay had recently completed a term as U.S. Secretary of state (1825-29), in which post he had ably advanced and defended the joint interests and independence of the new republics in North and South America, urging the adoption of the anti-colonial principles of the American Revolution for all developing nations.

The instruments of the American System included: the Bank of the United States — run by American nationalists — controlling speculators and guaranteeing cheap credit for farmers and developers; tariffs to protect home industry against foreign trade war; and growing government expenditures for the creation of roads, canals, and rail lines.

South Carolina was threatening to secede from the Union unless the protective system were ended. The anti-national (“Free Trade” or what would today be termed a “pro-free market”) movement was led by the former U.S. Treasury Secretary Albert Gallatin of Switzerland. During his own long reign at the Treasury (1801-14), Gallatin had canceled the Founding Fathers’ industrial development program and had virtually dissolved the American armed forces, using the money instead to “try to pay off the national debt.”

“[The] decision on the system of policy embraced in this debate, involves the future destiny of this growing country. One way…it would lead to deep and general distress; general bankruptcy and national ruin; the other, the existing prosperity will be preserved and augmented, and the nation will continue rapidly to advance in wealth, power and greatness….
“Eight years ago, it was my painful duty to present to the other House of Congress, an unexaggerated picture of the general distress pervading the whole land. We must all yet remember some of its frightful features. We all know that the people were then oppressed and borne down by an enormous load of debt; that the value of property was at the lowest point of depression; that ruinous sales and sacrifices were everywhere made of real estate [such as forced sales of farms]; that stop laws and relief laws [i.e., debt moratoria] and paper money were adopted to save the people from impending destruction; that a deficit in the public revenue existed, which compelled Government to seize upon, and divert from its legitimate object, the appropriation to the sinking fund to redeem the national debt….

“[Today by contrast] we behold cultivation extended, the arts flourishing, the face of the country improved, our people fully and profitably employed…a People out of debt; land rising slowly in value, but in a secure and salutary degree; a ready, though not extravagant market for all the surplus productions of our industry; innumerable flocks and herds browsing and gamboling on ten thousand hills and plains, covered with rich and verdant grasses; our cities expanded, and whole villages springing up, as it were, by enchantment; our exports and imports increased and increasing; our tonnage [shipping], foreign and coastwise, swelling and fully occupied; the rivers of our interior animated by the perpetual thunder and lightning of countless steam boats; the currency sound and abundant; the public debt of two wars nearly redeemed; and, to crown all, the public treasury overflow- ing….

“This transformation of the condition of the country from gloom and distress to brightness and prosperity, has been mainly the work of American legislation, fostering American industry, instead of allowing it to be controlled by foreign legislation, cherishing foreign industry….

“It is now proposed to abolish the system, to which we owe so much of the public prosperity…I have been aware that, among those who were most eagerly pressing the payment of the public debt, and, upon that ground, were opposing appropriations to other great interests [i.e., to pay debts develop and defend the nation, there were some who cared less about the debt than [preventing] the accomplishment of other objects. But the People- of the United States, have not coupled the payment of their public debt with the destruction of the protection of their industry….If it is to be attended or followed by the subversion of the American system, and an exposure of our establishments and our productions to the unguarded consequences of the selfish policy of foreign Powers, the payment of the public debt will be the bitterest of curses. Its fruit will be like the fruit “Of that forbidden tree, whose mortal taste “Brought death into the world, and all our woe, “With loss of Eden.” ” …[There] is scarcely an interest, scarcely a vocation in society, which is not embraced by the beneficence of this system [of govemment promotion and deliberate development]…. ” …When gentlemen have succeeded in their design of an immediate or gradual destruction of the American System, what is their substitute? Free trade! Free trade! The call for free trade, is as unavailing as the cry of a spoiled child, in its nurse’s arms, for the moon or the stars that glitter in the firinament of heaven. It never has existed; it never will exist….

“Gentlemen deceive themselves. It is not free trade that they are recommending to our acceptance. It is, in effect, the British colonial system that we are invited to adopt; and, if their policy prevail, it will lead, substantially, to the recolonization of these States, under the commercial dominion of Great Britain. And whom do we find some of the principal supporters, out of Congress, of this foreign system? Mr. President, there are some foreigners who always remain exotics, and never become naturalized in our country: whilst, happily, there are many others who readily attach themselves to our principles and our institutions….

“But, Sir, the gentleman [Albert Gallatin…or Henry Kissinger?] to whom I am about to allude, although long a resident of this country, has no feelings, no attachments, no sympathies, no principles, in common with our People. Nearly fifty years ago, Pennsylvanias took him to her bosom, and warmed, and cherished, and honored him; and how does he manifest his gratitude? By aiming a vital blow at a system endeared to her by a thorough conviction that it is indispensable to its prosperity. . . .

“To [recommend] the. . . theories by Mr. Gallatin…to favorable consideration. . . [South Carolina’s Senator Robert Y. Hayne] has cited a speech by my Lord Goderich, addressed to the British Parliament, in favor of free trade….I dislike this resort to authority, and especially foreign and interested authority, for the support of principles of public policy. I would greatly prefer to meet gentlemen on the broad ground of fact, of experience, and of reason; but since they will appeal to British names and authority, I feel myself compelled to imitate their bad example. Allow me to quote from the speech of a member of the British Parliament, bearing the same family name with my Lord Goderich…: “It was idle for us to endeavor to persuade other nations to join with us in adopting the principles of what was called ‘free trade.’ Other nations knew…what we meant by ‘free trade’ was nothing more nor less than…to prevent them, one and all, from ever becoming manufacturing nations….The policy that France acted on, was that of encouraging its native manufactures, and it was a wise policy; because if it were freely to admit our manufactures, it would speedily be reduced to the rank of an agricultural nation; and therefore a poor nation, as all must be that depend exclusively upon agriculture. America acted too upon the same principle with France. America legislated for futurity — legislated for an increasing population…since the peace, France, Germany, America, and all the other countries of the world, had proceeded upon the principle of encouraging and protecting native manufactures.”

“But I have said that the system nominally called “free trade”…is a mere revival of the British colonial system, forced upon us by Great Britain during the existence of our colonial vassalage. The whole system is fully explained and illustrated in a work published as far back as 1750, entitled “The trade and navigation of Great Britain considered, by Joshua Gee”….In that work the author contends–

“That manufactures, in the American colonies, should be discouraged or prohibited…we ought always to keep a watchful eye over our colonies, to restrain them from setting up any of the manufactures which are carried on in Britain; and any such attempts should be crushed in the beginning: for, if they are suffered to grow up to maturity, it will be difficult to suppress them….

“The advantages to Great Britain from keeping the colonists dependent upon her for their essential supplies…not one-fourth part of their product redounds to their own profit: for, out of all that comes here, they only carry back clothing and other accommodations for their families; all of which is the merchandise and manufacture of this kingdom….

“All these advantages we receive by the plantations, besides the mortgages on the planters’ estates, and the high interest they pay us, which is very considerable; and therefore very great care ought to be taken, in regulating all affairs of the colonists, that the planters be not put under too many difficulties, but encouraged to go on cheerfully.”

But the British colonial authorities had taken no heed of warnings, and had squeezed the American colonists beyond their endurance. The Americans had fought back in the Revolution of 1775-1782. British cavalrymen had broken into and ransacked the house of the four-year-old Henry Clay, who watched while enemy soldiers thrust swords into the grave of his recently-dead father, looking for treasure.
Senator Clay remembered these scenes, while recommending to his countrymen the American over the British system of economics