1. OUR PEOPLE: The people whom Colombus labeled "Indians," in what must be seen as one of the greatest malapropism of all time, had live on this land for over 1000 generations. The origins and development of the native peoples and the impact of the European coming is examined in this section. This opening section will also attempt to answer the question that must have been on the minds of many Indians, who are these Awaunageesuck (European strangers) and why have they come?
2. FOUNDATIONS: Like any building, the American edifice had to have a foundation and that foundation determined much about the emerging nature of America. This section examines the First Settlements, Virginia and Massachusetts, and compares and contrasts the differing motives and method of settlement as well as the significant contributions made by these two foundation settlements. Foundations will also look at the settlement of other colonies and focus on how each colony contributed to the rise of a multi-cultural society.
3. MAKING AMERICANS: The most important development of colonial America was the transformation of Old World peoples into New World people or of Europeans and Africans into Americans. This section details this transformation by examining those developments which "made" Americans. The demographic foundations of the society, its emerging social structure, the economic growth, the evolving political culture, and even cultural expressions in 18th century colonial America will be presented. This transformation also sets the stage for.....
4. BREAKING WITH BRITAIN (1756-1776): The American colonies were like a child that grew up in a very benign environment with all the things it needed to grow and thrive, but that was neglected by its parent. Great Britain did not interfere or even pay much attention to the colonies as they grew and developed. But after 1756 and the French and Indian War, the British decided that they had better take more control over their increasingly large empire, This Colonial Reorganization and the efforts of the British to tax the American colonists will lead first to protest and ultimately rebellion.
5. WAR AND REVOLUTION (1776-1783): The Revolutionary War, from the first shots to the Treaty of Paris, is the topic of this section. The story of the Declaration of Independence, the problems of the "divided States" (the Loyalists), the war with its theaters and battles, make up the body of this section.
6. CREATING THE AMERICAN REPUBLIC (1783-1800): This section examines just how the Americans created their government Res Publica in the early national era. The primary question involved the nature of the national government and the process was one of trial and error as the nation moved to formulate the constitutional regime. The Articles of Confederation with its successful western lands policies, the Convention, the emergent Constitution, the Ratification Debate, the rise of political parties, and the coming together of the Supreme Court form the body of this discussion.
7. ANTEBELLUM AMERICA (1800-1860) This major topic is divided into three parts:
A. Dynamics of Growth: This examines the rise of the United States to its great nation status in the antebellum era. The population growth, the rapid territorial expansion that made the US a bi-coastal continental entity, and the foundations of the modern American economy are the focus of this section.
B. The House Divided: As the nation grew and developed in the antebellum period, a significant division became apparent and troubling. While the South stayed on the old road established by the founders, the North diverged on a different road, one marked by the sign posts of modernization, urbanization, immigration, and industrialization. These two sections will be characterized and the differences highlighted as the course moves toward.....
C. The Causes of the Civil War: The argument is that there were significant structural problems facing America, Constitutional ambiguities, the over-rapid growth of the nation, the differences between the North and South, the fanaticism of certain Northerners and Southerners, and of course, Slavery, that created the potential environment for a catastrophic development, that came into interaction with certain events, the sectional crisis, and this all exploded into Civil War.
8. THE CIVIL WAR: The focus of this section is on the meaning and result of the Civil War and how it answers fundamental problems that had faced America, but also opens the doors to new and troubling questions that must be dealt with by.....
9. RECONSTRUCTION: (see History 102)
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