Archive for January, 2014

Who was Teddy Roosevelt?

The Talented Mr. Roosevelt
Here is a good video from the history channel about Theodore Roosevelt.

Chapter 29 questions

1. List the main features of the New Freedom platform. Compare with the New Nationalism. What writer influenced TR in creating his platform? Which was the more conservative platform?
2. What factors, especially political considerations, gave Democrats hope that they could capture the White House in 1912?
3. What were the unusual features of the election of 1912? Use the information from the map on 730 as well as the actual text in forming your answer. What might have happened if TR and Taft had not split the Republican vote? What about the Socialists?
4. Explain: “Progressivism rather than Wilson was the run-away winner.”
5. Which party was stronger in 1912? Socialists or Progressives? Why?
6. How did Taft eventually find a happy ending?
7. How did Wilson’s heritage (birthplace and religious background) influence specific policies he advocated?
8. What tactic did Wilson use to attempt to “manage” the legislative branch as both governor and president? What impact did his personality have on the effectiveness of this tactic?
9. What three specific things did Wilson target as the cause of the economic inequality in America? Which one was addressed first, and why did this make sense?
10. What is the correlation between the Underwood Tariff Act and the 16th Amendment? How did Wilson get this bill passed despite opposition and lobbying?
11. How did the Federal Reserve Act attempt to fix the specific flaws of the Civil War Banking Act?
12. What two laws passed under Wilson attempted to break the power of the trusts? What were the main powers of the Federal Trade Commission?
13. How did the Clayton Act help labor? What were its main provisions? How historically significant did Samuel Gompers believe this law to be?
14. How did Wilson change the cultural makeup of the Supreme Court? What were the LIMITS of Wilson’s Progressivism, from a social point of view?
15. Create a chart of the specific pieces of major legislation passed during Wilson’s first term in office.
16. Was Wilson imperialist or anti-imperialist? Give a nuanced answer with specific examples.
17. Describe the reasons for Wilson’s less-than-friendly relations with Mexico.
18. How did most Americans regard our obligations at the start of World War I? How did economic ties influence our “neutrality?”
19. Why did German submarines attack non-military ships? Did they attack American ships? Explain why America was outraged by the attacks on the Lusitania, Arabia, and Sussex?
20. What pledges did Germany make, and what was the value of these pledges? What condition did Germany extract from the US in order to give the Sussex pledge?
21. What groups strongly supported Wilson in his re-election bid?

The White Man’s Burden and Response

Make sure you read this for our next class meetings on the B/C days. You might want to take some notes comparing the two poems. You should have seen the first one last year, and I would suggest you find out who Rudyard Kipling was.
What do these two poems suggest about imperialism (and anti-imperialism)?

The White Man’s Burden
Rudyard Kipling, 1899

This famous poem, written by Britain’s imperial poet, was a response to the American take over of the Philippines after the Spanish-American War. What was Kipling saying about colonialism? How should the word “burden” be interpreted, and who exactly carries this burden?

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Send forth the best ye breed–
Go bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives’ need;
To wait in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild–
Your new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half-devil and half-child.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
In patience to abide,
To veil the threat of terror
And check the show of pride;
By open speech and simple,
An hundred times made plain
To seek another’s profit,
And work another’s gain.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
The savage wars of peace–
Fill full the mouth of Famine
And bid the sickness cease;
And when your goal is nearest
The end for others sought,
Watch sloth and heathen Folly
Bring all your hopes to nought.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
No tawdry rule of kings,
But toil of serf and sweeper–
The tale of common things.
The ports ye shall not enter,
The roads ye shall not tread,
Go mark them with your living,
And mark them with your dead.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
And reap his old reward:
The blame of those ye better,
The hate of those ye guard–
The cry of hosts ye humour
(Ah, slowly!) toward the light:–
“Why brought he us from bondage,
Our loved Egyptian night?”

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Ye dare not stoop to less–
Nor call too loud on Freedom
To cloke your weariness;
By all ye cry or whisper,
By all ye leave or do,
The silent, sullen peoples
Shall weigh your gods and you.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Have done with childish days–
The lightly proferred laurel,
The easy, ungrudged praise.
Comes now, to search your manhood
Through all the thankless years
Cold, edged with dear-bought wisdom,
The judgment of your peers!

Then this response was published in an African-American newspaper…

Why Talk of the White Man’s Burden?
By Bruce Grit, The Colored American (D.C.) (Feb. 25, 1899).

This poem was written in response to Kipling’s and published in a major African American newspaper.

Why talk of the white man’s burden;
What burdens hath he borne
That have not been shared by the black man
From the day creation dawned?

Why talk of the white man’s burden,
Why boast of the white man’s power
When the black man’s load is heavier,
And increasing every hour?

Why taunt us with our weakness,
Why boast of your brutal strength;
Know ye not that the children of meekness
Shall inherit the earth — at length?

“Take up the white man’s burden!”
What burdens doth he bear,
That have not been borne with courage
By brave men everywhere?

Then why the white man’s burden?
What more doth he bear than we —
The victims of his power and greed
From the great lakes to the sea?

This poem was published without a title. It is provided here from the first line.

The Panama Canal

Here’s a cool palindrome about Teddy Roosevelt: A MAN, A PLAN, A CANAL: PANAMA



For more info:

From How Stuff Works:

Timeline of Canal Construction:

This explains what it was like for the workers: from WGBH The American Experience: and here is an animation of how it was expected to work:

Here’s a video that shows how it works:

Chapter 28 questions- now due Friday!

Chapter 28 questions- Due Friday Jan. 31

1. Compare the demographic details provided in the opening paragraphs with the first two paragraphs under “March of the Millions” on p. 308 and the chart on p. 309. What are three conclusions you can draw regarding the changes in the American population?
2. Explain (specifically) what the progressives believed about government power, and why. How did economic concerns from the Gilded Age fuel progressive beliefs in the early 20th century?
3. What previous writers and movements helped propel progressive reform in the US? What more extreme movement threatened to gain strength if progressive reforms were not initiated?
4. What did muckrakers do? What magazines were associated with muckraking? Compare and contrast muckrakers and yellow journalists.
5. What was the claim of David G. Phillips? What Progressive Amendment attempted to deal with this problem? What was Phillips’ reward?
6. Explain the quote: “The cure for the ills of American democracy… was more democracy.”
7. Why is there no socialism in the United States, according to Werner Sombart?
8. What was the IWW? Why were they controversial?
9. What were the two chief goals of the progressives, according to p. 708?
10. What six specific measure did progressives enact to increase voter control over government? Explain each one.
11. How did women first get the right to vote? What arguments did suffragists use to support their case?
12. What progressive reforms were put into place at the local government level?
13. What progressive reforms were put into place at the state government level? In which states was this the strongest?
14. What organizations did women use to gain influence besides the vote? What is the notion of the “separate spheres?”
15. Was Mueller v. Oregon a true victory for women? Explain.
16. How does the incident at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory help illuminate Scoop’s dictum that a law is only as good as its enforcement?
17. What victories did workers gain during the progressive era?
18. Why did progressives target alcohol? What did they believe were the ties between political machines and saloons?
19. What was the Square Deal, and what were the three C’s? How did they work together?
20. What were the causes of the coal strike of 1902 and what were the effects?
21. What specific measures were enacted against the railroads? Explain each one.
22. What, according to TR, were the differences between “good trusts” and “bad trusts?” What were the limits to TR’s trustbusting?
23. What were the two political effects of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle?
24. What were the goals of the three 19th century laws sought to conserve the environment? What laws and actions did TR put in place?
25. Read carefully—how did the Turner thesis influence the national mood for conservation?
26. What is the difference between conservationism and environmentalism (or preservationism)?
27. How does the struggle over the Hetch Hetchy Valley show the limits of conservationism in protecting the environment? What was “multiple-use resource management?”
28. What happened during the “Roosevelt Panic” of 1907? Why was his disavowal of a third term a mistake?
29. Who was Eugene V. Debs? Use the index in the back of your book to give a complete answer.
30. What were Taft’s (WHT) political liabilities? What was “dollar diplomacy?”
31. How did the “rule of reason” impact government efforts to control trusts?
32. What were the causes of eventual rift between TR and WHT?

Chapter 27 questions

Chapter 27 Empire and Expansion

Due Tuesday January 28

1. According to pp 669-670, what general event (think Turner) and 8 specific developments (number them as you answer) caused American to turn its attention to the rest of the world by the 1890s? What did the Rev. Josiah Strong advocate, and why?

2. What was the “Big Sister” policy? How did our “little sister” like it, and how did it treat “her?”

3. Explain the meaning of the editorial cartoon on p. 670, and the meaning of the diner, the waiter, and the menu items.  What are the “Sandwich Islands?”

4. List or chart the major diplomatic crises in the late 1880s and 90s and their outcomes. Make sure you include the president at the time, with whom we were tangling, as well as what we were arguing about, and how these were resolved.

5. Who was Alfred Thayer Mahan, and how did influence government policy? What was his main thesis?

6. What details make the Venezuelan border crisis a perfect example of the competition occurring among countries at the end of the 19th century? How did it alter US-British relations? Who is the eagle, and who is the lion?

7. How did Americans end up in Hawai’i in the 1820s? How did the McKinley Tariff and the treatment of Japanese workers end up influencing the “sugar lords” to attempt to take over the islands officially? How did they manage this? Why did it take until 1898 for Hawai’i  to be annexed by the US?

8. Why did Cubans rebel against Spanish rule, and what tactics did they use? What were the four reasons most American believed the US should support the insurrectos?

9. How did the planned Panama Canal influence our reaction to the Cuban rebellion?

10. What was the USS Maine doing in Havana harbor? What really happened—and what did people suspect? Why did people suspect this? When did the actual truth come out?

11.  Why did McKinley finally declare war on Spain? What is ironic about this decision? What was the Teller Amendment, and why was it passed?

12. Why did the first engagement of the war begin in the Philippines? Who was the American commander? What happened to the Spanish fleet there? Why couldn’t the American forces quickly complete the capture of the islands?

13. What was the most successful engagement of the war, and what made it possible (think back to page 670)? What did this engagement—reveal as a key weakness for the Spanish military? Which part of our own military was the weakest, and why? What were the causes of injury/death of most casualties?

14. What roles did Teddy Roosevelt and Leonard Wood play in the Spanish- American War? What happened when we invaded Puerto Rico in terms of response form the Spanish?

15. What were the terms of the treaty which ended the Spanish American War (including new territories and approximately where they were)? How long had the war lasted, and what did that indicate? What were the greatest controversies over the terms?

16. Why did the Spanish American War actually inflame anti-imperialist sentiment in the US? What did anti-imperialists argue about the acquisition of the Philippines? How did the acquisition of the Philippines  impact American foreign policy vis-à-vis Asia?

17. Explain the situation surrounding the Insular Cases court decisions, and its implications for future American imperialism.

18. How independent was Cuba after the War? Include an explanation of the Platt Amendment in your answer.

19. How did the Filipino people respond to being acquired by the US? Be specific and thorough in your answer, and include an explanation of “benevolent assimilation.” Who was Emilio Aguinaldo?

20. How did America try to compete with other foreign powers in China? How successful were these attempts? What was the Boxer Rebellion, what caused it, and how was it put down?

21. How did Theodore Roosevelt come to be on the presidential ticket as candidate for vice president in 1900? What had he previously done in public service?

22. How did imperialism influence the election of 1800? Describe the platform of both parties. What impact did Teddy Roosevelt have in this area on the Republican ticket?

23. How did Roosevelt end up being president? How did that end up probably annoying the Republican establishment? What was Roosevelt’s stance regarding presidential power and authority?

24. Explain how the Panama Canal was built including explanation of relevant treaties and the US involvement in the Panamanian Revolt from Columbia.

25. How did Roosevelt’s presidency impact our relations with Latin America? What was the Roosevelt Corollary and the so-called “Bad Neighbor” policy, and how were they related?

26. Why did Japan and Russia go to war, and how did the US intervene? How did Roosevelt get rewarded?

27. Explain the “gentleman’s agreement” and the Root –Takahara agreement.

28. How did the “New Left” historians interpret imperialism?

Snow Day adjustments as of January 24

YOUR CHAPTERS 24-26 Test will be Monday, January 27.
Chapter 27 will be due Tuesday, January 28.

Documents/Blog posts especially emphasized will include Turner, Booker T Washington, WEB DuBois, and the Industrialization and Urbanization links.

Here are some study questions:
1. When was William Jennings Bryan a presidential candidate, and list the parties he represented?
2. What were the causes of the Great Railroad Strike of 1877? of the Pullman Strike of 1894? How did each strike end?
3. What is a “cow town?” Where were they, specifically? How were the railroads associated with them?
4. How did the invention of barbed wire end the days of the open range and the long drive? (know what all these terms meant, and where the major cattle trails were)
5. What was the “Billion Dollar Congress,” and why was it called that? Why did it pass the Pension Act of 1890?
6. What exactly, is the difference between a “boomer” and a “sooner?”
7. What were the major challenges to morality and society during this period? What were “Comstock Laws?”
8. What were the major leaders and groups of the Prohibition and Temperance movements? What is the difference between Prohibition and Temperance?
9. Explain the main beliefs (and overlapping beliefs) of the Greenback Labor Party, the Populists, (and the Progressives).
10. What were the specific reasons why farmers were distressed in this period, and what actions did they take to try to advocate for themselves?
11. What were the goals and specific provisions of the Dawes Act? What were the flaws of this legislation?
12. What does “accomodationsim” mean?
13. How were the “New Immigrants” different from previous waves of immigrants in US history?
14. How did the increasing disparity of wealth distribution affect the US? What theories were created to attempt to address the problem of this disparity?
15. Where were the main mining discoveries of this time period, and what impact did they have on national wealth and settlement patterns?