Brief US History

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First Continental Congress

The First Continental Congress took place on October 26, 1774 in Philadelphia. It was a meeting of selected representative from each of the thirteen colonies. After the Intolerable Acts were passed by the British to punish colonists for the Boston Tea Party, the colonies came together to brainstorm a solution to end the British reign. The resolution to this meeting of the minds was to boycott importing British goods, and they would also plan to cease exporting any goods to England.

George Washington

George Washington was born on February 22, 1732 in Virginia. He is best known for being the first President of the United States. Before he was in office, he lead the Continental army to victory during the American Revolution. While in office from 1789 until 1797, Washington paved the way for future leaders and learned how to successfully run a country.

Daughters of Liberty

The Daughters of Liberty were the originally protestors. In response to the Stamp Act and the Townsend Acts, a group of women protested the unfair taxes that the Crown implemented. These women protested by refusing to use British goods. The women saw this as their duty to help as they were the ones who did all the purchasing for the household. The Daughters of Liberty hand spun their own clothing, and even learned to make their own teas for the community to ensure that no one needed to purchase British goods.

Alien and Sedition Acts

The Alien and Sedition acts were a set of laws passed by President John Adams in 1798. These laws made it extremely difficult for immigrants to become citizens of the United States. Congress increased the residency requirements from five years to fourteen years. These laws also allowed also gave the President the ability to deport people who were not citizens and were deemed “dangerous”. Although the Alien and Sedition Acts had all been repealed by 1802, this act remains contentious to this day, considering the immigration controversies our country is currently experiencing.

Uncle Tom’s Cabin

Uncle Tom’s Cabin was a novel written by Harriet Beecher Stowe in 1851 that took the United States by storm selling over 300,000 copies. This novel was about the life of a slave, Uncle Tom. Tom befriends his owner’s ill daughter, Eva, and as Eva grew sicker, she begged her father to free all of his slaves. After her father agreed, he was then murdered, and Tom was sent to a new work place, where his owner made his life a living hell. Beecher-Stowe’s depiction of slavery throughout this book is said to have been what started the American Civl War, which eventually lead to the abolishment of slavery.

The Louisiana Purchase

The Louisiana Purchase was a deal struck between the United States and France in 1803. This allowed the United States to purchase 827,000 square miles from France for the price of 15 million dollars. According to historians, taking inflation into account, this purchase would now be worth approximately 1.2 trillion dollars! What made Louisiana so valuable was its access to the Mississippi River, and the port of New Orleans. Having access to these would ensure that trading would become more successful. Thomas Jefferson wanted to acquire this massive piece of land to increase our trading profits and give us control of more land, and in turn, making us more powerful amongst the nations.

Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman was an African American slave who founded and ran the Underground Railroad. The Underground Railroad was a system of secret safehouses that escaped slaves could stay at up and down the east coast. In 1849, Harriet heard rumors that she was going to be sold. She then fleed to Philadelphia where she brainstormed the idea to conduct a system of safe places for other slaves to stay on their road to freedom. During the ten years that the Underground Railroad system was in place, Harriet along with other “conductors”, brought over three hundred slaves to the northern United States to freedom.

Bleeding Kansas

Bleeding Kansas was a series of violent events that took place beginning in 1854 between citizens that were pro-slavery, and people that were anti-slavery. They were fighting overly the newly acquired chunk of land, which is now known as Kansas. In 1854, the Kansas-Nebraska Act freed this territory, leaving it as fair game for pro-slavery and anti-slavery to influence the current residents of the territory. 56 people died as a result before the violence was ended in 1861, following the start of the American Civil war.

Monroe Doctrine

The Monroe Doctrine was a policy written by James Monroe in 1823 addressing the United States’ foreign policy. This document had four main points:

  1. The US should not interfere with issues going on between European countries.
  2. The US would not interfere with existing colonies in the Western Hemisphere.
  3. No further expansion would happen towards the Western Hemisphere.
  4. Any attempt to oppress or control any nation in the Western Hemisphere by a European nation is considered a contentious act on the United States

This act assured protection from foreign countries, by addressing the issues between then, and implementing rules and laws on how to coexist peacefully.

Dred Scott Decision

Dred Scott was a a slave in the 1800’s who sued for freedom. Scott traveled to many anti-slavery territories, and believed that since he had resided in multiple free regions for a prolonged period of time, he should no longer be a slave. After experiencing a taste of freedom with his army surgeon owner in the Norther states, Scott took his case to the Supreme Court in an attempt to become free. Scott lost his case. The Supreme Court stated that if even though he had resided in a free territory, African Americans were not considered legal citizens of the United States, and therefore, did not have rights. This case divided the country and drove the country closer and closer to the Civil War that was inevitably brewing.

Cite this paper

Brief US History. (2021, Apr 17). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/brief-us-history/

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