U.S. History & Government to 1877 State Content Standards & Essential Questions
Content Standard 1: The student will analyze the foundations of the United States by examining the causes, events, and ideologies which led to the American Revolution.
1. What were the political and economic consequences of the French and Indian War on the 13 colonies?
2. What was the British imperial policy of "salutary neglect" before the French and Indian War and the policies of requiring the colonies to pay a share of the costs of defending the British Empire after the French and Indian War?
3. What the Albany Plan of Union?
4. What was the significance of the Proclamation of 1763?
5. What was the intent of Patrick Henry’s Stamp Act Resolves?
6. What was the purpose of the Committees of Correspondence?
7. What was the cause and effect of the Boston Massacre?
8. How did Paul Revere’s engraving of the Boston Massacre influence colonial opinion toward the British?9. What was the cause and effect of the Boston Tea Party?
10. What were The Coercive Acts of 1774 (the Intolerable Acts) and why were they implemented?
11. Why was the First Continental Congress formed?
12. What happened at the Battles of Lexington and Concord and what was the impact on colonial resistance?
13. What was the purpose of Patrick Henry’s "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death" speech?
14. What was the purpose of Thomas Paine's Common Sense and what were the main arguments of this pamphlet?
15. What were the points of view of the Patriots and the Loyalists about independence?
16. What were the main arguments made by Mercy Otis Warren and Phyllis Wheatley in their writings?
17. What was the Olive Branch Petition and how was it received by King George III?
18. What were the main grievances expressed by the Second Continental Congress?
19. What were the central ideas and grievances expressed in the Declaration of Independence?
20. How did John Locke’s theory of natural rights influence the Declaration of Independence?
21. What is the concept of the social contract developed by John Locke?
22. What are the main ideals established in the Declaration of Independence?
23. What were the contributions of Thomas Jefferson and the Committee of Five in drafting the Declaration of Independence?
24. What are the natural rights listed in the Declaration and what is their origin?
25. According to the Declaration, why are governments formed?
26. According to the Declaration where does government get its powers?
Content Standard 2: The student will examine the foundations of the American nation laid during the Revolutionary Era through the contributions of significant individuals and groups involved in the key military and diplomatic events of the Revolutionary War that resulted in an independent nation.
1. What was the Articles of Confederation and what role did they play in the Revolutionary War?
2. Why did some groups fight for independence, remain loyal to the king, or chose to be neutral?
3. What choices were made by free and enslaved African Americans during the war?
4. How did the Revolutionary War impact Native American?
5. What was the impact of the military leadership of General George Washington?
6. How did the victories at Boston, Trenton, and Saratoga impact the war?
7. What was the impact of the French Alliance on the outcome of the war?
8. What was the purpose of the publication of Thomas Paine’s The Crisis?
9. What was the impact of the Valley Forge Encampment to the patriot cause?
10. What was the significance of the defeat of Lord Cornwallis’s army at the Siege of Yorktown?
Content Standard 3: The student will examine the formation of the American system of government following the Revolutionary War that led to the creation of the United States Constitution.
1. What were the major issues encountered by the young nation that led to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787?
2. What were the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation?
3. How was the lack of a common national currency a problem for the new nation?
4. What was the impact of the lack of a common defense on the new nation?
5. How were war debts managed under the Articles?
6. How were disputes over the western territories as resolved by the Northwest Ordinance?
7. What led to the civil unrest as typified in Shays’ Rebellion?
8. What was the significance of the Constitutional Convention?
9. What was the Virginia Plan of government?
10. What was the New Jersey Plan of government?
11. How was the Great Compromise a solution to the various governmental plans?
12. What was the Three-fifths Compromise?
13. What were the key contributions of George Washington, James Madison, George Mason, and Gouverneur Morris during the Constitutional Convention?
14. What were main arguments of the Federalist Papers Number 10 and Number 51?
15. What was the goal of the Antifederalists?
16. What is the meaning of the constitutional principles of:- popular sovereignty- consent of the governed- separation of powers- checks and balances- federalism- judicial review
17. What was the Bill of Rights and what freedoms do they contain?
Content Standard 4: The student will examine the political, economic, social, and geographic transformation of the United States during the early to mid-1800s.1. What was the Whiskey Rebellion and which power of government was challenged?
2. What was President George Washington’s advice for the new nation in his Farewell Address?
3. What restrictions of individual rights were made in the Alien and Sedition Acts?
4. What was the response of the Republican-Democrats in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions?
5. What was the impact of the presidential election of 1800?
6. How was the acquisition of territory through the Louisiana Purchase and the contributions of the explorations of the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery Expedition significant?
7. How was the Marshall Court’s precedent-setting decisions in Marbury v. Madison and McCulloch v. Maryland important?
8. What was the impact of the War of 1812 on the American national spirit?__________________End of Fall Semester ____________________________Spring Semester Begins Here
9. How did the increased sectional tensions increase over the expansion of slavery?
10. What was the Missouri Compromise and how did it deal with the issue of slavery?
11. What was the Monroe Doctrine and how did it protect American interests and territory in the western hemisphere?
12. What was the significance and impact of the Jacksonian Era?
13. How was the election of Andrew Jackson seen as a victory for the common man?
14. What was the Nullification Crisis and how was it an expression of states rights?
15. What were the arguments made by Senator Daniel Webster and Senator John C. Calhoun concerning states rights?
16. What was the impact of government policies, non-adherence to treaties, and territorial expansion on Native American lands including the resistance and removal of the Five Tribes?
17. Describe the sectional economic transformations including:a. the concentration of population, manufacturing, shipping, and the development of the railroad system in the North as contrasted tob. the plantation system, the increased demand for cotton brought about by the invention of the cotton gin, and the reliance on a slave labor system in the South.
18. Describe the slave system in the South.
19. What was the impact of Nat Turner’s Rebellion on the South?
20. What was the cause and effect of the Slave Codes?
21. What was Underground Railroad and how did people like Harriet Tubman impact the drive for freedom?
22. What was the significance of the Abolitionist movement?
23. What was the significance of the Women’s Suffrage Movement?
24. What was the importance of the Second Great Awakening?
25. What was the impact of the Declaration of Sentiments?
26. What were the contributions to their respective movements of:-Frederick Douglass- William Lloyd Garrison- Sojourner Truth- Susan B. Anthony- Elizabeth Cady Stanton
27. What was Manifest Destiny and how did it motivate Americans to dominate the continent?
28. Which territory was added to the U.S. between 1845 and 1853 and how was it added?
29. What were the causes of the rapid settlement of Oregon and California?
30. What was the impact of western expansion upon Native American culture and tribal?
31. How did western expansion add to the growing sectional tensions regarding the expansion of slavery?
Content Standard 5: The student will analyze the social and political transformation of the United States as a result of the causes, course, and consequences of the American Civil War during the period of 1850 to 1865.
1. What role did slavery play as a principal cause of increased sectional polarization?
2. What was the Compromise of 1850?
3. How did the publication of Uncle Tom’s Cabin as fuel anti-slavery sentiments?
4. How was popular sovereignty used with the Kansas-Nebraska Act?
5. What was “Bleeding Kansas?”
6. How did Dred Scott v. Sanford case impact the debate over slavery?
7. What was the cause of John Brown’s Raid on the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry and how did it impact the nation?
8. Who won the presidential election of 1860 and how did it impact the country?
9. What caused the secession of South Carolina and how was it articulated?
10. What were the goals of President Abraham Lincoln in preserving the Union?
11. How was the Confederate States of America formed and which states made up the C.S.A.?
12. How did the attack on Fort Sumter unfold?
13. What was the importance of the Border States and what efforts were made by Lincoln to secure these states?
14. What were the advantages and disadvantages of the Union and the Confederacy upon the eve of the war?
15. What were the consequences of the major turning points of the war including the:- Anaconda Plan and Total War Strategy- Battle of Antietam as a catalyst for the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation and its role in expanding the goals of the war to include the ending of slavery?
16. What was the significance of the Battle of Gettysburg and the Gettysburg Address?
17. How did the capture of Vicksburg help secure the Union’s control of the Mississippi River?
18. What was the major theme of Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address?
19. How did Lincoln plan to deal with the South after the war?
20. How did the treatment of General Lee at Appomattox Courthouse reflect Lincoln’s overall reconstruction plans?
21. What was the impact of Lincoln’s assassination on his plans for reconstruction?
Content Standard 6: The student will analyze the transformation of politics and society during the Reconstruction Era, 1865 to 1877.
1. What were the various policies and plans for the reconstruction of the Confederacy including those proposed by- President Lincoln- President Andrew Johnson- the Radical Republicans.
2. What was the impact of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments?
3. What were the Black Codes, the Freedmen’s Bureau, and Jim Crow laws and what role did they play during reconstruction?
4. What were the different points of view regarding the social changes following the Civil War including the role of carpetbaggers and scalawags, the rise of the Ku Klux Klan, elected Black officials, and sharecroppers?
5. What was the impact of the Homestead Act of 1862 and the resulting movement westward and how did it impact Native Americans?
6. What was the impact of the presidential election of 1876 and how did it bring about the end to the reconstruction of the South?