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APUSH Running Timeline

  • Jan 20, 1215

    Magna Carta

    Magna Carta
    This document, created back in the Holy Roman Empire Days, influenced both British and Colonial government, providing ideas such as "habeus corpus" (or due process of law) and limits the power of the King.
  • First English Settlement

    The Roanoke Island settlement, lead by Sir Walter Raleigh as an excusion into the New World in search of Gold (El Dorado) and riches, failed 3 times, with the colonists dissapearing mysteriously each time.
  • Jamestown Settlement

    Nearly 23 years after the horrific failures of the Roanoke colony settlement, this one was headed with the Virginia Company, a joint-stock company created to find gold and silver riches in the New World - exemplified by the fact that their settlers were mostly goldsmithes and silver workers, who disdained farming. In the first winter, 2 in 3 died from cold and starvation, with Natives being the only source of food to the dwindling colonists.
  • Jamestown Tobacco Farming begins

    Jamestown Tobacco Farming begins
    John Rolfe, one of the few colonists who did not return to England in 1610, founded the successful and monumental planting of tobacco in Jamestown, and later all over Southern America. This would be the largest reason Jamestown survived as it did, what with the tobacco business growing to 30 million pounds of tobacco growth by middle 18th century.
  • Plymouth Colony Foundation

    Moved due to the three following factors affecting the lives of English people:
    1) overcrowding
    2) competition (for resources AND jobs)
    3) religion - the primary reasons puritans came the US. Fearing Prosecution, Puritans of the Plymouth Colony sought to Separate (hence their name, Separatists) from the Anglican church due to the corruption of the church.
    Aided by Squanto, and Chief Massasoit which aided colony success
  • Mayflower Compact

    Mayflower Compact
    The Mayflower Compact was the first form of government in the New England English colonies, as it was created aboard the very ship it was named after. Following a majoritarian format, the Mayflower Compact was designed to keep the Separatist settlers in line.
  • Petition of Rights 1628

    Petition of Rights 1628
    Almost like the Bill of Rights in American history, this English document was passed as a list of liberties that the King could not infringe upon for every British citizen.
  • English Bill Of Rights

    English Bill Of Rights
    This English document reaffirmed many of the rights previously given such as right of Protestants to have Arms for their own defence, and these that were listed here also heavily influenced the American Bill of Rights.
  • John Locke's 3 Natural Rights

    John Locke's 3 Main Natural liberties that all humans should have (but not slaves, ironically) were Life, Liberty, and Property. These can be found in the opening lines of the Declaration of Independance, which features "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness", but the last was changed so it was not a GUARENTEE that one would succeed. Also, property meant rights which Blacks could not have at the time.
  • Stono Rebellion

    Stono Rebellion
    The only slave rebellion at this time occurred in Soto, South Carolina, when a group of about 20 slaves attacked stores, and over half a dozen plantations as other rebel groups joined them. As the slave group marched south towards Spanish Florida, they acquired guns and ammunition. Although this rebellion was ended quickly by a white force, it proved that these 18th century slaves had no chance in defeating slavery or defending themselves for freedom.
  • Montesquieu's Separation of Powers

    Montesquieu's Separation of Powers
    Montesquieu vied for a separation of powers, or a tripartite system that held an executive, legislative, and judicial branch that did not centralize power. The American government, as held in the Constitution, features this checks-and-balances system.
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    French and Indian War / Seven Years War

    This war was fought over the disputed Ohio territory, but quickly involved many other countries and was really a world war. In the fighting, the British won in Europe, America, and India and gained much land, nearly doubling their size. They also gained nearly 123 million Pounds of debt, which they imposed much of it upon the Colonies, which they faulted for their thirst for land and resources.
  • Proclamation of 1763

    Proclamation of 1763
    This English proclamation forbade Colonists from settling out west past the dividing line of the Appalachian Mountains, due to fear of Indian uprisings. Colonists had fought the Seven Years/ French and Indian war in order TO gain the right to settle there, so this legislation made them angry!
  • Sugar Act

    Sugar Act
    Passed to stop the rampant molasses and rum smuggling from the Columbian Exchange and southern islands, this act lowered the duty on tea from 6 p to 3 p, but ultimately enforced port authority of the British.
  • The Stamp Act

    The Stamp Act
    This act affected the Lawyers and Newspaper printers the most in colonial states, but was meant to create more revenue for the British for paying their debts in the French and Indian War. This was repealed later on due to boycotting and actions taken by the Sons of Liberty and Daughters of Liberty.
  • Stamp Act Congress

    They passed these resolutions to assert the fact that taxation without representation was an infringement of the British rights, and that only those chosen by the Colonists could represent them in Parliament, and could levy taxes in doing so.
  • Declatory Act

    Declatory Act
    This act repealed the Stamp Act, but also asserted the rights of Parliament to tax the colonies, in direct response to the Stamp Act congress' Resolutions.
  • Townshend Duties

    Townshend Duties
    Taxes on glass, paint, oil, lead, paper, and tea were applied with the design of raising £40,000 a year for the administration of the colonies. The result was the resurrection of colonial hostilities created by the Stamp Act.
    Reaction assumed revolutionary proportions in Boston, in the summer of 1768, when customs officials impounded a sloop owned by John Hancock, for violations of the trade regulations. Crowds mobbed the customs office, forcing the officials to retire to a British Warship in th
  • Currency Act

    Currency Act
    This act abolished the coinage and printing of Colonial Bills of credit (money), because of lack of regulation and acceptance of other state's currencies in other states. In addition, inflation and cheating caused British sales to fall, and so Pariliament abolished the colonial money.
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    Revolutionary War

  • Thomas Paine

    Thomas Paine
    Paine's "COMMON SENSE" Pamphlet was read by nearly 100,000 readers and was widely known as the social stigma that brought about revolution nearly 6 months later. It listed, in clear, easy-to-read language the advantages and disadvantages of independance for the colonies. It finally answered the question of whether or not to seek independance, throwing the colonies into the revolution they had.
  • Virginia Declaration of Rights

    Virginia Declaration of Rights
    Drafted by George Mason, this document pushed the inherent rights of men, including their right to rebel against an inadequate government and was very influential as well to the Declaration of Independence, created 1 month later.
  • Declaration of Independence

    Declaration of Independence
    Written by Thomas Jefferson in 1776, this document severed the ties between England and the United colonies, under the Second Continental Congress. It is important to note that this document did not mean anything to the British, as the US were not INDEPENDENT just because they sent a document saying they were!
    The doc featured ideas from Locke, and listed out American natural rights and grievances against the King George III.
  • Articles of Confederation

    Articles of Confederation
    Created as the first government of all 13 colonies during their Revolutionary War, this was meant to be a skeletal, low-powered central government that could coin money, command troops, and conduct foreign affairs as well as Native American issues.
    Drafted by the Continental Congress, it could not levy taxes and left that power to the states, which was its ultimate downfall.
    Anti-Federalists supported this government the most, as they feared strong central government.
  • Philadelphia Convention (CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENT)

    Philadelphia Convention (CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENT)
    Simply put, this was a convention of delegates from the colonies, intending to revise the failing Articles of Confederation. Issues such as executive branch election and power, how long a president's term should be, whether to allow the abolition of the slave trade, and "population representation" or a set number from each (NJ PLAN VS. VIRGINIA PLAN) were debated and ultimately the convention created the Constitution.
  • Virginia Plan (Madison)

    Virginia Plan (Madison)
    The Virginia Plan was presented by Virginia's governator Edmund Randolph, but was written by James Madison. It featured a Bicameral Legislature with a lower house elected by people and an upper house elected by the lower house. The President would then be elected by this legislature. A judiciary branch was also made, given the powers to override.
  • New Jersey Plan

    New Jersey Plan
    Created in order to rebute the Virginia Plan, this one kept the Articles as the main government but gave it powers such as ability to levy taxes and force their collection. It also willed for equal representation, not based on population.
  • Connecticut Compromise

    Connecticut Compromise
    Proctored by Roger Sherman, this essentially blended the two Virginia and New Jersey plans together to allow for one house of the bicameral legislature be decided based on Population (house of representatives, Virginia) and the other to be equal (Senatorial House, New Jersey).
  • Compromise of 1850

    Compromise of 1850
    This was a package of 5 bills passed in 1850:
    -Texas would give up its land claims to New Mexico and any land north of the Missouri Compromise line, as well as transfer its debt to the US
    -California becomes a Free State
    -Wilmot Proviso does not affect South, and Utah and New Mexico are allowed to choose whether they want to be free or slave (popular soveriegnty).
    -Fugitive Slave Act is passed, declaring any runaway slave found must be returned to owner
    -No slave trade in Washington, D.C.