Ap us history 112102 large

APUSH Semester Final

By lukeseq
  • 1492

    Columbus "Discovers" the New World

    Columbus "Discovers" the New World
    While trying to find a Western passage to Asia, Christopher Columbus lands in the present day Bahamas aboard the Santa Maria. This "discovery" of the New World would open up the way for European countries to colonize and exploit these lands and their peoples. This arrival of Europeans in the New World would kick off the Columbian Exchange which was the exchange of diseases, crops, and cultures between the Old World and the New World.
  • Roanoke Island "The Lost Colony"

    Roanoke Island "The Lost Colony"
    Roanoke Island was a settlement of 117 English men, women, and children that was established in 1587. The ships that transported the colonists returned to Europe for supplies and was surprised to find the colony abandoned when they returned. The word "Croatoan" was found carved into the palisades surrounding the settlement.
  • Founding of Jamestown

    Founding of Jamestown
    The Virginia Company of England decided to fund a new venture and establish a permanent British settlement in Jamestown, Virginia. 1104 English men arrived to start the settlement but were dangerously ill-prepared. By 1610, roughly 85% of the settlers were dead from starvation or disease but the colony was saved by the help of Powhatan Indians. John Rolfe ultimately secured the future of the colony by introducing tobacco, a cash crop, which grew very well in the Virginia soil.
  • Pilgrims Create Plymouth Colony

    Pilgrims Create Plymouth Colony
    The Pilgrims, sometimes known as the Separatists, wanted a clean break from the Anglican Church as they perceived it to be corrupt. They landed in Plymouth Rock aboard the Mayflower under the leadership of William Bradford. Since their colony was criminal they struggled to get new followers and were eventually overshadowed by the Puritans. The Mayflower compact that they signed en route to Plymouth was important as it was the first attempt at self-government in the New World.
  • Puritans Migrate to the New World

    Puritans Migrate to the New World
    The Puritans perceived corruption and unholy teachings in the Anglican Church but didn't want to go as far as to separate like the pilgrims. Under the leadership of John Winthrop the Puritans aimed to build a new and "clean" church in the colonies. They ended up around Boston and Salem where they enacted strict religious rules to try and build a "city on a hill" that could serve as an example to others.
  • Bacon's Rebellion

    Bacon's Rebellion
    An armed rebellion against Colonial Virginia Governor William Berkley led by Nathaniel Bacon. Power in the Virginia Colony rested in the hands of a few elites who did not protect settlers from Indian attacks as expansion would lower the value of the land they owned. Outraged colonists took up arms and led a militia against the Native Americans. This marked the first rebellion in the North American colonies and resulted in Berkeley being recalled to England.
  • The Great Awakening Begins

    The Great Awakening Begins
    A religious revival in the American colonies between the 1730s and 1740s. The movement had an emphasis on individual religious experiences and a "personal relationship with God". Famous speakers like Johnathan Edwards and George Whitefield painted God as angry and loving respectively to draw a spectrum of people to Christianity. The movement resulted in a spiritual reawakening in the colonies that caused many to rediscover their fate.
  • The Albany Plan is Proposed

    The Albany Plan is Proposed
    The Albany Plan of Union was suggested by Benjamin Franklin at the Albany Congress. The plan proposed that the colonies create a union with a central government for the defense and management of the colonies. The central government would still be under the control of a president general that would be appointed by the Crown. The plan did not pass but it was an important precursor to the Articles of Confederation and even the Constitution.
  • Start of the Seven Years' War

    Start of the Seven Years' War
    Known in the American colonies as the French and Indian War, this global conflict conflict was the result of the mounting tensions between the French and the British. The war was sparked when a British force under the command of George Washington started a skirmish with a French encampment. This war would span the five continents and would result in more than a million soldiers dead.
  • Signing the Treaty of 1763

    Signing the Treaty of 1763
    The signing of the Treaty of 1763 marked the end of the French and Indian War (Seven Years' War). The treaty resulted in Great Britain gaining Spanish Florid and all French territory East of the Mississippi River. but the war was extremely costly and the following taxes passed by the British government would create divides between the American colonies and the British government that would eventually result in war.
  • The Proclamation of 1763

    The Proclamation of 1763
    The Proclamation of 1763 created a boundary marked at the Appalachian Mountains that barred American colonists from settling on lands West of it. The British government passed this proclamation as it believed that American colonists moving West would provoke Native American resistance that would draw the British Empire into another conflict. The colonists were outraged by this proclamation as common opinion was that the winning of the French and Indian War would grant new Western territories.
  • The Sugar Act of 1764

    The Sugar Act of 1764
    The British Parliament passed the Sugar Act of 1764 as a war of recuperating the immense amount of money spent fighting the French and Indian War. It set a tax on sugar, some wines, coffee, pimiento, cambric, molasses, and more. The act also stated that anyone caught smuggling would be subject to trial without jury. This act was very unpopular with the colonists since limited domestic manufacturing meant they had to import virtually everything.
  • The Stamp Act of 1765

    The Stamp Act of 1765
    The British Parliament passed the Stamp Act of 1765 as a way of generating further revenue from the American colonies. It imposed a tax on all papers and official documents in the American Colonies. This outraged the colonists as it was a direct internal tax that acted within the colonies not on just imports and exports. Everything from licenses to playing cards were subject to the tax and the generated tax money was meant to pay for the war costs of the French and Indian War.
  • The Declaratory Act of 1766

    The Declaratory Act of 1766
    The British Parliament repealed the Stamp Act because of the enormous tensions that it was creating between the government and the American colonies. But to reaffirm their authority in the colonies the British Parliament passed the Declaratory Act which stated that the Parliament had the authority to directly tax the colonies "in all cases whatsoever".
  • The Boston "Massacre"

    The Boston "Massacre"
    The Boston Massacre was an armed confrontation between British soldiers and American colonists outside of the Boston Custom House on King Street. A mob of colonists threw a variety of objects at the British soldiers until one soldier was wounded and discharged his gun. Although only 5 colonists died, the event was heavily propagandized and used by American Patriots to raise anti-British sentiment and encouraged public sentiment for independence against the British.
  • The Boston Tea Party

    The Boston Tea Party
    The Boston Tea Party was a protest against the Tea Act of 1773 by the Sons of Liberty. The Sons of Liberty dressed in Native American disguises and boarded three vessels transporting tea for the British East India Company and proceeded to dump roughly $1.7 million (in today's money) worth of tea crates into Boston Harbor. The incident drove the British parliament to react with the Coercive or "Intolerable" Acts which would further push American colonists towards revolution.
  • The Intolerable Acts

    The Intolerable Acts
    The British Parliament passed the Intolerable Acts as a way of punishing Boston for the Boston Tea Party. These act closed the port of Boston, outlawed assemblies, took control of colonial government, move the trials of Royal Officials to England, regulated commerce, and enacted high taxes. The British Parliament hoped that these acts would reduce colonial resistance by making an example of Boston but it only further fueled the revolutionary cause in the Americas.
  • First Continental Congress

    First Continental Congress
    The First Continental Congress was a meeting of delegates from all of the American colonies except Georgia. It occurred as a response to thee Intolerable Acts that the British Parliament had put in place after the Boston Tea Party. The delegates discussed how the colonies would respond to the actions of the British government and finally agreed to take part of a collective boycott on British goods and decided to create a petition that asked for the repealing of the Intolerable Acts.
  • The Battles of Lexington and Concord

    The Battles of Lexington and Concord
    British forces planned to march on Lexington and Concord to capture John Hancock, Samuel Adams, and stores of military goods. But Paul Revere learned of the attack and rode ahead to warn American minuteman. This allowed the military goods to be moved and for Hancock and Adams to slip away. But the American militia assembled and confronted the British force. Nobody knows who fired it but the "Shot Heard Round the World" was fired and kicked off the American Revolutionary War.
  • The Declaration of Independence

    The Declaration of Independence
    The Declaration of Independence marked the birth of the United States of America. It was adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4th, 1776 and declared that America was an independent nation. It contained the goals of the new American nation and contained complaints against the British king. It also contained logical arguments of why the colonists wanted to be free from the British Empire. The Declaration of Independence would also help unify the colonies against Britain.
  • The Franco-American Alliance

    The Franco-American Alliance
    The Franco-American Alliance was a pledge by France to send military aid and loans to the United States of America to help their revolutionary cause. The agreement was negotiated by Benjamin Franklin and progressed rather slowly until the American victory at the Battle of Saratoga. The alliance is widely considered the turning point for the American Revolutionary War as France would now send troops, supplies, and even its navy which the American revolutionaries desperately needed.
  • The Articles of Confederation

    The Articles of Confederation
    The Articles of Confederation was the first written constitution of the United States that was written in 1777. Post-war fears of a strong government made the document far too weak. Under the Articles of Confederation the federal government was unable to maintain an army, regulate commerce, or institute taxes. The weakness and ineffectiveness of the articles was best revealed by Shay's Rebellion where the federal government was unable to put down an armed rebellion in Western Massachusetts.
  • The Treaty of Paris

    The Treaty of Paris
    The American victory at the Battle of Yorktown finally forced British negotiators to consider American Independence a possibility. The Treaty of Paris formally ended the American Revolutionary War and recognized the United States of America an independent nation. Furthermore, the treaty granted the United States of America vast amounts of British territory that went all the way up to the Mississippi River. This newly acquired land and independence would foreshadow a surge in economic prosperity.
  • A New Constitution Is Adopted

    A New Constitution Is Adopted
    The Articles of Confederation was an early attempt of government and had a variety of problems due to the fear of an oppressive government. The newly made Constitution was able to strike a better balance between state and federal powers by giving the federal government certain important power like levying taxes and regulating trades. But the Constitution also protected certain rights like freedom of speech, religion, bearing arms, assembly, and to petition.
  • Judiciary Act of 1789

    Judiciary Act of 1789
    The Federal Judiciary Act of 1789 created an independent federal court system that included the Supreme Court and various lower courts. It also created the position of Attorney General who would argue on behalf of the United States of America in court cases. This act was significant as it brought about the entire Judicial branch of the government and would pave the way for important checks and balances between the Judiciary, Congressional, and Executive branches of government.
  • The Second Great Awakening Begins

    The Second Great Awakening Begins
    Starting around the 1790s and ending in the 1840s, the Second Great Awakening pushed for a more personal relationship with God and resulted in the creation of many new denominations like Methodists and Baptists. The movement resulted in significantly higher church membership across the country and also resulted in many new reform groups that were backed by the church. The church became a vehicle for moral social change and social reform where even women were welcome.
  • The Invention of the Cotton Gin

    The Invention of the Cotton Gin
    Before the invention of the cotton gin, slavery was actually on the decline in the Americas as the profitability of crops grown with slave labor was steadily decreasing. But the invention of the cotton gin made cotton an extremely profitable crop as it could very efficiently remove seeds from the fiber. This would result in a massive boom in the demand for slave labor which would result in Southern states becoming deeply dependent on slavery and rejuvenating the institution of slavery.
  • Marbury v. Madison

    Marbury v. Madison
    William Marbury brings James Madison to court due to his failure to deliver his judicial commission. The Supreme Court ruled that Madison's failure to deliver the commission was illegal but that the court would not order him to deliver it as the provision in the Judiciary Act of 1789 that enabled Marbury to bring his claim to the Supreme Court was itself unconstitutional. This claimed the Supreme Court's power of judicial review that allowed them to rule that legislation was unconstitutional.
  • Louisiana Purchase

    Louisiana Purchase
    The Louisiana Purchase bought a large amount of land West of the Mississippi from the French. Jefferson was torn over this land purchase as although the purchase would obviously benefit America, it supported the loose constructionist views that Jefferson was vehemently against. The purchase of Land would fuel tensions between slave and free states who were competing to spread their ideologies West. Furthermore, it greatly promoted Westward expansion and the idea of Manifest Destiny.
  • The Embargo Act of 1807

    The Embargo Act of 1807
    The Embargo Act of 1807 prohibited American ships from trading in foreign ports as an attempt to punish Britain and France for interfering in American trade. But the legislation greatly damaged the American economy and severely decreased American imports and exports. The legislation hit Southern farmers and New England merchants very hard and attracted a significant amount of dissent. But in the long run it acted similar to a protectionist tariff and resulted in a boom of local manufacturing.
  • The War of 1812

    The War of 1812
    The War of 1812 was sparked by British impressment of American sailors and attempts to restrict American trade. The war ended with no clear winner with the signing of the Treaty of Ghent. The war represented a turning point in the Native American struggle to govern themselves. However the end of the war ushered in an "Era of Good Feelings" which boosted nationalism and encouraged the ideas of American expansionism. It also marked the end of the Federalist Party which was seen as unpatriotic.
  • Supreme Court Establishes Federal Supremacy

    Supreme Court Establishes Federal Supremacy
    In McCulloh v. Maryland (1819) the Supreme court ruled that Congress had the authority to establish federal banks that could not be taxed by the states. This ruling established that Congress had powers that weren't explicitly in the Constitution. Furthermore the Supreme Court established that states cannot interfere with the power of Congress to regulate commerce in Gibbons v Ogden (1824). These rulings helped establish the power of the federal government and place it above the states.
  • The Trail of Tears

    The Trail of Tears
    The Trail of Tears was the height of the Indian Removal Act where multiple tribes were forced to give up their lands and move West of the Mississippi. Roughly 1 in 4 Native Americans died during this forced displacement and many more died due to the vastly different new lands. This would set a precedent for valuing profits and lands over Native American peoples that would last for many years to come as Native American reservations were systematically moved and made smaller.
  • The Nullification Crisis

    The Nullification Crisis
    The Nullification Crisis was the result of mounting tensions between Southern states and the tariffs imposed on them by the federal government. "The Tariff of Abominations", as it was nicknamed, hurt the Southern economy and resulted in John Calhoun of South Carolina declaring the the tariffs were null and void in the 1832 Ordinance of Nullification. This idea of nullification would set a precedent that would promote a sense of state supremacy which would eventually have dangerous effects.
  • The Mexican-American War

    The Mexican-American War
    The Mexican American War was sparked by a dispute over territorial land claims between Mexico and the United States over a tract of land located below the Nueces River. The war was rather decisive and ended with American troops marching through Mexico City. The significance of this war was the massive land concessions that Mexico was forced to offer up. This resulted in the United States now spanning from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean with major tracts of coastland on each ocean.
  • Bleeding Kansas

    Bleeding Kansas
    Bleeding Kansas referred to the violent confrontations between pro-slavery and anti-slavery forces in Kansas. It proved that both the free states and slave states were willing to take drastic measures to ensure the expansion of their ideologies to the West. Some historians think that this marked the beginning of the Civil War as it showed that both the Missouri Compromise and the Compromise of 1850 were not enough to stop the inevitable conflict between the Northern states and Southern states.
  • Dred Scott v. Sandford

    Dred Scott v. Sandford
    Arguing his residence in Illinois and the Louisiana Territory made him a free man, Dred Scott was eventually able to plead his case in the Supreme Court. But the majority ruling stated that no African American who was imported into the United States was a citizen. The majority of the court also declared that the Missouri Compromise of 1820 was unconstitutional. This basically meant that there were no such thing as "free states" which worsened already record tensions between the North and South.
  • The Election of Abraham Lincoln

    The Election of Abraham Lincoln
    Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican to be elected as president. He served as a rallying cry for the Southern states who had strongly campaigned against his election and in doing so had got themselves to believe that Lincoln was some kind of radical who would overuse federal power to abolish slavery. His election drove many of the Southern states into a panic and by the time Lincoln took office, eleven states had already seceded from the Union and created the Confederate States of America.
  • South Carolina Secedes From the Union

    South Carolina Secedes From the Union
    South Carolina seceding in response to the election of Abraham Lincoln was a shock to all. South Carolina had always been a big proponent of states rights as could be seen in the Nullification Crisis, but seceding from the Union was treason that could only be met with force. South Carolina's secession served as a precedent that pushed ten other states to secede before Lincoln took office as well. This would mark the inevitably of the Civil War as the Union would fight to preserve its unity.
  • Battle of Fort Sumter

    Battle of Fort Sumter
    The Battle of Fort Sumter was the result of the escalating tensions between the Southern states that had seceded to created the Confederacy and the United States of America. The Confederate attack on the base marked the beginning of the Civil War. This attack meant that a peaceful resolution to the institution of slavery could not be reached. This attack would result in a swift declaration of war by Lincoln who was previously trying to get the states to peacefully rejoin the Union.
  • The Homestead Act of 1862

    The Homestead Act of 1862
    The Homestead Act of 1862 offered 160 acres of land to every head of household provided that they live on the property for five years, improve it in some way, and farm the land. This was an attempt by the federal government to make the Western lands productive. This act prompted many Europeans to migrate to the Untied States after the Civil War and helped make the nation more agriculturally productive than the world had ever seen before.
  • The Emancipation Proclamation

    The Emancipation Proclamation
    The Emancipation Proclamation served a variety of goals in the Union's war plan. It broadened the goals of the Union by making slavery an explicit aspect of the war instead of simple unification. This also prevented European countries from providing aid to the Confederacy as it made the war explicitly about slavery. Finally, the Emancipation Proclamation served as an ultimatum where the rebelling states would still be able to keep their slaves if they rejoined the Union in a timely manner.
  • Sherman's March to the Sea

    Sherman's March to the Sea
    Sherman's March to the Sea was a Union military campaign led by General William Tecumseh Sherman that had the Union army follow a "scorched earth" strategy that stretched all the way from Atlanta to Savannah, Georgia. The campaign destroyed industry, civilian property, telegraph lines, military targets, and transportation networks. By so thoroughly destroying their infrastructure, Sherman severely hurt the Confederacy's ability to fight and helped end the Civil War much sooner.
  • Surrender at Appomattox

    Surrender at Appomattox
    After the fall of Richmond, the Confederate capital, the Confederacy was desperate. Confederate forces were stretched thin and many were lacking supplies and manpower. Realizing that the war was lost, General Robert E Lee surrendered his 28,000 Confederate troops in Appomattox Court House which effectively ended the Civil War. This allowed for the bloodshed to finally end and potentially saved many lives as the Union wouldn't have to continue to fight any major battles against the Confederacy.
  • The Passing of the 14th Amendment

    The Passing of the 14th Amendment
    The 14th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified in 1868 and granted citizenship to all persons that had been born or naturalized in the United States. It also guaranteed all citizens "equal protection of the laws". The passing of this amendment was so significant as it guided how formerly enslaved people would be reintegrated back into society. Although Reconstruction is widely considered to have failed, this was a significant attempt to protect African American and immigrant rights.
  • Andrew Johnson is Impeached

    Andrew Johnson is Impeached
    After a long back-and-forth between President Andrew Johnson and Radical Republicans on the issue of Reconstruction, the House of Representatives finally decided to impeach Johnson for violating the Tenure of Office Act. Johnson had fired Edwin Stanton, the Secretary of War, and had officially broken the law. Although Johnson was not removed from office, after his impeachment he served out the rest of his term with very little action and no longer attempted to veto important legislation.
  • The Passing of the 15th Amendment

    The Passing of the 15th Amendment
    The 15th Amendment to the Constitution granted voting rights to African American men in the United States. This was a milestone for Civil Rights and would dramatically shift the political landscape in the South. Passed by Radical Republicans, the passing of this amendment was wildly unpopular even in the North and resulted in Democrats gaining power across the federal government. This would result in the many violations of this amendment to not be seriously combatted for years to come.
  • Completion of the Transcontinental Railroad

    Completion of the Transcontinental Railroad
    Funded by massive government payouts and land grants, the transcontinental railroad was completed in 1869. This drove massive settlement of Western lands and a resulting production boom. Agricultural goods, gold, and a variety of other goods was able to be produced in the West and transported back to the East. The building of the transcontinental railroad would have an unparalleled positive impact on the growth of the American economy and link the country together.
  • The Dawes Act of 1887

    The Dawes Act of 1887
    The Dawes Act of 1887 was a direct attack on the communal property lifestyle of Native American peoples. It would break parts of Native American reservations into allotments and grant them to any Native American who wanted it. It was an attempt to integrate Native Americans into American society and create "surplus" land that could be sold and used by the federal government. Many American groups thought by helping allot the reservations they could help ease the tensions between their peoples.
  • Plessy v. Ferguson

    Plessy v. Ferguson
    Homer Plessy was a one-eight African American man who was not allowed a seat on a first class train due to his race. Plessy sued to challenge Louisiana's Separate Car Act and eventually appealed to the Supreme Court. The majority opinion of the court created the constitutional precedent for racial segregation allowing for "separate but equal" treatment. Post Civil War Southern states would establish strict segregation laws in response which were commonly known as Jim Crow.
  • The Spanish-American War

    The Spanish-American War
    Ignited by the destruction of the USS Maine and the interception of the De Lome Letter, the Spanish-American War was a relatively short conflict between the United States and Spain. The war resulted in a decisive US victory as the recently modernized and expanded American Navy was far superior to the aging Spanish fleet. The resulting victory allowed the United States to secure economic interests in Cuba, annex the Philippines, and establish itself as a global superpower.
  • The Model T is Created

    The Model T is Created
    The introduction of the Model T to the American pubic revolutionized American transportation and instituted a new "car culture". By using mass production and implementing effective strategies, Henry Ford was able to offer an affordable car to middle an upper class Americans. This came with drawbacks as it allowed for suburban sprawl that drastically reshaped the American landscape. Furthermore the affordable Model T incentivized the building of new roads, garages, and more car infrastructure.
  • Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire

    Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire
    Due to neglected safety features and locked doors within the factory building, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire killed 146 workers. The preventable deaths brought significant attention to unfair working conditions. The tragedy helped unite organized labor and create a large amount of public pressure on politicians. Political leaders soon responded by empowering the Factory Investigating Committee and creating laws covering fire safety, factory inspection, sanitation, and employment rules.
  • Revenue Act of 1913

    Revenue Act of 1913
    Also known as the Underwood Tariff, the Revenue Act of 1913 substantially changed how the United States funded its government. Sponsored by House Representative Oscar Underwood and signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson, the legislation drastically lowered tariff rates while simultaneously establishing a federal income tax. The Revenue Act of 1913 was able to promote international trade, help lower domestic prices for goods, and eventually pioneered further legislation of this sort.
  • American Enters the Great War

    American Enters the Great War
    Following the sinking of the Lusitania, the interception of the Zimmerman telegram, and the resuming of German unrestricted submarine warfare, the United States joined the side of the Allies providing them with much-needed supplies and credit extension. The United States government rapidly restructure how wartime production was managed creating a variety of agencies including the War Industries Board. These agencies helped manage the allocation and transportation of scarce resources.
  • The Espionage and Sedition Acts

    The Espionage and Sedition Acts
    After the United States entered World War 1, significant domestic opposition to the war prompted the government to take drastic action. Fearing that antiwar sentiment would undermine the war effort, President Wilson in conjunction with congress passed the Espionage Act of 1917 and the Sedition Act of 1918 that criminalized "disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language about the US government or military. This violated and undermined the freedoms of speech, press, assembly, and petition.
  • The Great Migration Begins

    The Great Migration Begins
    Following the United States entry into the Great War, Northern industrial centers experienced a severe lack of workers. This prompted many African Americans living in post-civil war Southern states to take advantage of the opportunity and migrate to more accepting Northern states. This allowed some six million African Americans to leave the practice of sharecropping and in some cases lift themselves out of poverty. This new wealth and freedom spurred many cultural and racial equality movements.
  • Palmer Raids

    Palmer Raids
    Following the creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, America was suffering from a surge of paranoia. Wanting to control the supposed domestic communist threat, Attorney General Alexander Mitchell Palmer conducted a series of violent and abusive "law-enforcement" raids on socialists, communists, leftists radicals, and anarchists. This was a dark time in American history where law-enforcement officials flagrantly abused the constitutional rights of the people they were arresting.
  • 19th Amendment Ratified

    19th Amendment Ratified
    The 19th finally gave women the right to vote reading, "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex." The amendment allowed for millions of women to vote, gain representation for issues that affected them, and help move them closer to equality. The 19th Amendment drastically reshaped America's electorate an brought a flock of new beliefs, views, and priorities to the American political stage.
  • The Harlem Renaissance

    The Harlem Renaissance
    While African Americans were gaining more social mobility due to the Great Migration, there occurred an intellectual and cultural renaissance for African American music, dance, art, fashion, literature, theater, politics, education, and much more. Being centered around the Harlem neighborhood in Manhattan, the Harlem Renaissance was a new age of African American academia and culture allowing for a new sense of shared community that transcended neighborhoods, cities, counties, and states.
  • The Dawn of Prohibition

    The Dawn of Prohibition
    The Eighteenth Amendment was the nationwide constitutional ban on the production, importation, transportation, and sale of all alcoholic beverages that was the culmination of the long-lasting Temperance movement. Seeing alcohol consumption as a "societal ill" women in particular took a frontline position in the battle against alcohol consumption forming a myriad of organizations. Prohibition was ultimately a failure as it was virtually unenforceable and drove taxable revenue underground.
  • The Roaring Twenties

    The Roaring Twenties
    The Roaring Twenties was a period of massive cultural overhaul and economic prosperity. Jazz became a popular form of music and women felt more comfortable expressing themselves through dance and fashion. The economic prosperity was driven by a significant acceleration in consumer purchasing that spurred the growth of industries and helped keep unemployment minimal. Unlike the majority of countries, the United States was able to smoothly transition from a wartime economy to a peacetime economy.
  • Founding of the American Civil Liberties Union

    Founding of the American Civil Liberties Union
    The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization that has the goal of protecting the constitutional rights of Americans through lobbying and litigation. The ACLU provides legal representation to select Americans when they believe that they are being denied their constitutional rights. The ACLU orchestrated the Scopes Monkey Trial and provided representation to John Thomas Scopes. The ACLU was formed in response to McCarthyism and the Palmer Raids as a way of fighting injustice.
  • Immigration Act of 1924

    Immigration Act of 1924
    The Immigration Act of 1924 restricted the amount of immigrants that were approved entry into the United States by utilizing a national origins quota while also completely excluded immigrants from Asia. The result was severe and made immigration from Eastern Europe nearly impossible due to the low percentage of Americans from said countries. The legislation was the first of its kind establishing the nation's first numerical limits on the number of immigrants who could enter the United States.
  • Scopes Monkey Trial

    Scopes Monkey Trial
    The Scopes Monkey Trial was a landmark legal case in which high school teacher John T Scopes was accused of violating Tennessee's Butler Act that outlawed the teaching of evolution. This trial was a major clash between Modernists who believed in evolution and Fundamentalists that believed in the Bible. Scopes enlisted the help of the American Civil Liberties Union and although losing the case was able to draw nationwide attention to the constitutionality of outlawing the teachings og evolution.
  • The Great Depression Hits

    The Great Depression Hits
    The Great Depression was the worst economic downturn in American history. After a crash in the stock market, millions found themselves in debt or with no savings. To add fuel to the fire, banks started to fail one by one as users began to withdraw their money. A vicious cycle started as low consumer spending drove companies to lay off workers which further drove consumer spending lower. At its worst unemployment hit 25%, 2 million found themselves homeless, and international trade collapsed.
  • The Start of the Dust Bowl

    The Start of the Dust Bowl
    Caused by poor agricultural practices, extended drought, and unusually high temperatures, the Dust Bowl was a region of the Sothern Plains region of the United States that suffered a series if severe dust storms. This weather catastrophe intensified the economic impacts of the Great Depression by making farming no longer viable in large swaths of the United States. The Dust Bowl caused roughly 2.5 million people to leave the Dust Bowl states and seek work elsewhere in industrialized cities.
  • Establishment of Tennessee Valley Authority

    Establishment of Tennessee Valley Authority
    In the midst of the great depression, President Roosevelt took many measures to help ease the burden on the people. The Tennessee Valley Authority, aimed to replant trees, teach better farming methods, build damns, and sell surplus electricity. The TVA was able to provide jobs and electricity to the rural Tennessee River Valley which spans seven states in the South. Low energy rates helped to ensure affordable power and encourage economic development by bringing electricity to rural areas
  • Social Security Act

    Social Security Act
    Signed into law y President Roosevelt as part of his New Deal legislation, the Social Security Act created a federal safety net for elderly, unemployed. and disadvantaged Americans. The original legislation paid financial benefits to retirees over the age of 65 based on payroll tax contributions. The legislation also established the Social Security Board structuring the act itself and working out the logistics to implement it such as making payments, learning who needs payments, and such.
  • Executive Order 8802

    Executive Order 8802
    Facing racism in hiring for wartime industries, Phillip Randolph along with other African leaders planned a protest in Washington DC. In response, President Roosevelt passed Executive Order 8802 stating "There shall be no discrimination in the employment of workers in defense industries and in Government, because of race, creed, color, or national origin." This was a piece of landmark legislation that would reinvigorate the Civil Rights movement and help provide legal grounds for the struggle.
  • Attack on Pearl Harbor

    Attack on Pearl Harbor
    The Attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise military operation by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service that aimed to destroy the US Pacific Fleet and demoralize the US Navy. The attack resulted in the death of 2,403 sailors, soldiers, and civilians. The attack had the opposite result of what the Japanese military was hoping and spurred widespread support for war that resulted in many Americans signing up for the military. Congress declared war on Imperial Japan the very day after the attack.
  • America Enters WW2

    America Enters WW2
    Following the Imperial Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States swiftly declared war on Japan and in turn had war declared on it by Germany and Italy solidifying the US's entry into World War II. Following these declarations of war, the US started a mass mobilization effort of its factories and populace. This rapidly jolted America out of the Great Depression as factories and companies opened their doors for workers needed to satisfy lucrative government military contracts.
  • Japanese Internment

    Japanese Internment
    After the Imperial Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and mounting paranoia, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 marking the beginning of Japanese Internment. The Executive Order created military zones in California, Washington, and Oregon forcing Americans of Japanese ancestry into them. This drastically effected many Japanese families who were forced to rapidly sell their possessions at unfavorable prices. The legislation also prompted Canada and Mexico to enact their own versions.
  • G.I. Bill of Rights

    G.I. Bill of Rights
    Wanting to thank veterans for their service in WWII, President Roosevelt signed the GI Bill of Rights that offered a variety of benefits to service members. The legislation provided funding for VA hospitals, offered low-interest mortgage loans, and provided free tuition for colleges and trade schools. This legislation allowed for a shift in American society and created a large and substantial middle class that valued education due to hundreds of thousands of veterans to attain higher education.
  • Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

    Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
    To avoid a prolonged ground war in the Pacific, President Truman utilized two atomic bombs dropping them on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The bombs killed a combined 120,000 people. This created a new power dynamic on the world stage and started an international nuclear arms race as other countries developed nuclear weapons programs of their own. This would eventually created a new international balance where nuclear armed countries are motivated to keep peace due to mutually assured destruction".
  • Levittown is Built

    Levittown is Built
    In the wake of the Baby Boom the limited supply of housing became apparent. the firm Levitt & sons Inc rose to the occasion using a new building practices to mass-produce a suburb. By only creating a limited number of house designs and offering limited customization options they were able to rapidly create houses and were able to sell them and much lower prices. Levittown is considered to be the father of modern suburbia and acted as the blueprint for future neighborhoods across the country.
  • Marshall Plan

    Marshall Plan
    After the Post World War II collapse of the European economy, President Truman fearing the unstable economy would incentivize communism enacted the Marshall Plan to rebuild their capitalist economies. The legislation provided Western Europe with extensive American aid and helped a resurgence of their economies and industrialization. This helped stop the spread of communism and helped to establish foreign markets for American goods helping to boost the American economy and international trade.
  • Berlin Airlift Begins

    Berlin Airlift Begins
    After the USSR implemented the Berlin Blockade as a way of starving West Berlin, the United States in conjunction with the Allies commenced Operation Vittles otherwise known as the Berlin Airlift. The Berlin Airlift served as a major victory for the US in the Cold War as they were able to demonstrate to the world their famous "Yankee ingenuity", thwart Stalin's plans, and pain the USSR as international bullies. In response the US, France, and Britain hardened their resolve on German issues.
  • Founding of NATO

    Founding of NATO
    Western Europe was devastated by WW II and was unable to properly defend itself from the looming communist threat. Hoping collective alliances would prevent further expansion by the Soviet Union, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was creating. The heart of the alliance is Article 5 which enshrines collective defense. The alliance helped Western European countries feel safe and secure from the expansion of the Soviet Union which helped them focus on reconstruction and post-war rebuilding.
  • Start of McCarthyism

    Start of McCarthyism
    Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin rose to prominence in American politics in 1950 when he claimed to have a list of communists within the state department. He used the paranoia of the Cold War and fear of communism to launch a series of trials on innocent American citizens who lost their careers and reputations. These trials created an atmosphere of fear and distrust that infringed on American freedoms guaranteed by the constitution and pushed a sense of conformity in politics and lifestyle.
  • Korean War Begins

    Korean War Begins
    The Korean War was a brutal conflict that began when soldiers from the North Korean People's Army invaded South Korea with support from China and the Soviet Union. America's policy at the time was containment of communism so American troops were shipped over to help the plight of the South Korean people. After some back and forth around the 38th parallel, an armistice was eventually created creating the a border at the 38th parallel. Almost 40000 Americans died and more than 100000 were wounded.
  • Brown v. Board of Education

    Brown v. Board of Education
    Strategically chosen by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Brown v Board of Education was a challenge against the ruling of Plessy v Ferguson. The course was filed by Oliver Brown on behalf of his daughter Linda Brown when she was denied entry into Topeka's all-white public schools. The Supreme Court sided with Oliver Brown and unanimously agreed that segregation in public schools was unconstitutional which effectively overturned the Plessy ruling.
  • Vietnam War Begins

    Vietnam War Begins
    After Japan's defeat in WW II, they promptly withdrew its forces from Vietnam allowing for Ho Chi Minh's communist forces to take over and declare a Democratic Republic of Vietnam. France hoping to regain control backed Emperor Bao in Southern Vietnam. The war was incredibly devastating with 2 million civilians, 1.1 million Viet Cong troops, and 200,000 South Vietnamese soldiers ending up dead. America dropped a devastating 8 million tons of bombs and pledged a staggering amount of resources.
  • Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956

    Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956
    Inspired by the German Autobahn, President Eisenhower signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1965, also known as the Eisenhower Interstate Act, to economically unite the country and provide greater defensive capabilities. The bill created a 41,000 mile interstate home that allowed for "speedy safe transcontinental travel". The new legislation further solidified American "car culture" allowing for car-owners to live further from work and cities while also being able to travel further for leisure.
  • U-2 Spy Incident

    U-2 Spy Incident
    The USSR shot down an American U2 spy plane in Soviet air space and was able to capture its pilot Francis Gary Powers. Confronted with the evidence President Eisenhower admitted to the Soviets that the CIA had been flying spy missions over the USSR for several years. The USSR used the incident to create a vast amount of propaganda and cancel their attendance of the Paris Summit that was being called to discuss the situation in Germany, a possible arms control treaty, and relaxation of tensions.
  • First Televised Presidential Debate

    First Televised Presidential Debate
    With the invention of television, Americans could see broadcasted shows and news by simply tuning into their favorite station. Kennedy seemed to feel more comfortable on the television and was willing to wear makeup unlike Nixon. This allowed Kennedy to pull ahead in popularity and ultimately win the election. Those who watched the debate reported that Kennedy won while those who read the transcript believed that Nixon won which indicated a new era in politics where appearance is significant.
  • Bay of Pigs Invasion

    Bay of Pigs Invasion
    After Cuba fell to communism on January 1st 1959, President Eisenhower approved a CIA operation to overthrow Castro by training Cuban exiles. President John F Kennedy inherits the planned invasion of Cuba but withdrew American air support so that the United States could maintain deniability. The Cuban exiles landed in the Bay of Pigs and were decimated by Castro's forces. The event was humiliating for JFK who then fired the director of the CIA and attempted to reform his presidential strategy.
  • Cuban Missile Crisis

    Cuban Missile Crisis
    After US intelligence surmised that the Soviet Union planned to install nuclear missiles in Cuba drastic measures were taken. JFK announced a full quarantine of the island halting the flow of military goods. The crisis reached its peak when the USSRS Grozny attempted the run the quarantine line but the ship eventually halted when a US ship fired a shell across its bow. The Soviet ships turned around, further conflict in the region was avoided, and Cuban missile sites were dismantled.
  • The March on Washington

    The March on Washington
    One of the largest and most famous American protests, the March on Washington was spearheaded by MLK and supported by President Kennedy. Drawing some 250,000 people of all backgrounds and ethnicities, the event drew attention to the continuing inequalities faced by African Americans. Many local African American churches and institutions chartered busses to transport people to and from the protest. MLK's "I Have a Dream Speech" fueled further civil rights fervor and legislation from Congress.
  • Assassination of President John F Kennedy

    Assassination of President John F Kennedy
    President John F Kennedy the President of the United States, was assassinated in Dallas, Texas while riding in the presidential motorcade. His assassination in large part helped unite a Congress to support legislation that would eventually become the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This also exercised the process by which a vice-president would become president of the United States. Johnson extensively documented the process to ensure that the handing off of power would be seen as constitutional.
  • The Great Society

    The Great Society
    President Johnson was incredibly ambitious when he entered office hoping to end poverty, reduce crime, abolish inequality, and preserve the environment. To this he promoted a series of policy initiatives that ultimately became known as The Great Society. One of the policy initiatives aimed to improve health security and wellbeing and ultimately established the Medicare and Medicaid programs. This was truly a period of reform with everything from education to the environment getting attention.
  • The Civil Rights Act of 1964

    The Civil Rights Act of 1964
    After desegregation of public schools, there was a public outcry by white pro-segregation activists. In response President Kennedy petitioned Congress for a comprehensive civil rights bill. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. This acted as a new benchmark in civil rights legislation and officially ended the application of Jim Crow laws in Southern states that had been upheld by the Supreme Court as constitutional.
  • Selma to Montgomery Marches

    Selma to Montgomery Marches
    Even after civil rights legislation had been passed, African Americans were facing fierce resistance when attempting to register to vote. To shed light on this, civil rights leaders organized a march from Selma to Montgomery in Alabama. The first march met stiff resistance, the second march was turned around by MLK, and finally the third march made it to Montgomery with escort by the military. This helped drive Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act and secure voting for all Americans.
  • Griswold v. Connecticut

    Griswold v. Connecticut
    Due to a myriad of religious and social values, many states had laws that restricted or outlawed the advertising or sale of contraceptives. The Supreme Court ruled that the Connecticut legislation was unconstitutional as it violated the Due Process Clause. The court further rules that the constitutional right to privacy guaranteed married couples the right to purchase and use contraception. This landmark ruling helped pave the way for further reproductive privacy and freedoms that we have today.
  • Voting Rights Act of 1965

    Voting Rights Act of 1965
    Although landmark federal civil rights legislation had been signed in the previous year, there was stiff resistance at the state and local levels. State and local governments were preventing African Americans from exercising their right to vote through literacy tests, poll taxes, and more unconstitutional practices. To combat these discriminatory voting practices, President Johnson signed the legislation to overcome the state and local legal barriers and provide a legal basis for protections.
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is Assassinated

    Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is Assassinated
    While standing on the balcony outside is room at the Lorraine Motel, MLK is killed in Memphis Tennessee. The bullet stuck him in the jaw and severed his spinal cord. In the months before his death, King was becoming more and more concerned with economic disparities promising that we "will get to the promised land". His death led to a surge of anger amongst African Americans but helped to pace the way for an equal housing bill that would be the last major legislation of the civil rights era.
  • Apollo 11 Moon Landing

    Apollo 11 Moon Landing
    Occurred eight years after President John F. Kennedy announced a national goal of landing a man on the moon by the end of the 1960s, the Apollo 11 Moon Landing was a landmark scientific achievement for the United States of America. This event effectively solidified the United States as the winner of the Space Race and the Soviet Union as the loser. This resulted in a major boost in morale for the United States and served as propaganda for the hundreds of million who watched with amazement.
  • Establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency

    Establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency
    By the end of the 1960s pollution problems had become undeniable due to advancements in science. Smog was killing New Yorkers, oil spills were devastating the ocean, and auto exhaust was high enough in certain regions that it was causing birth defects. Public pressure forced President Nixon to take action. Nixon proposed and ultimately established the Environmental Protection Agency utilizing a presidential executive order. The main goal of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment.
  • Watergate Scandal

    Watergate Scandal
    The exposing of the Watergate Scandal began when three burglars were arrested in the Democratic National Committee office located in the Watergate complex. The burglars were connected to President Nixon's reelection campaign and were caught wiretapping phones and stealing sensitive documents. Fearful of how it would appear, Nixon covered up the crimes but was ultimately exposed by the Washington Post. Facing massive public pressure, Nixon resigned from the presidency succeeded by Gerald Ford.
  • Roe v. Wade

    Roe v. Wade
    In response to a Texas state law that prevented abortion unless the pregnancy was life-threatening, a plaintiff by the pseudonym of Roe Wade filed a suit against the district attorned of Dallas County. Roe claimed the the state laws concerning abortion were unconstitutionally vague and abridged her right of personal privacy. The Supreme Court used the legal precedent set by Griswold v Connecticut and ruled that the constitution protects a pregnant women's liberty to choose to have an abortion.