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Assignment 1: A Difficult Past- How the Americas Change By Michael Wittman (page references refer to Crossroads of Freedom: Antietam)
The Americas in the 19th Century Racial Inequality: In the U.S Native Americans were kicked out of their own land and in some cases they were massacred. Slavery became a major issue in America. Canada was divided between the French and British. Latin America experienced a division of states and had migrants from Spain and Portugal.
The Americas in the 19th Century Economic Growth: Chinese immigrants flocked to San Francisco for the California gold rush which stimulated development in the West. American Colonies expanded westward and gained new lands from the Native Americans. After the War of 1812, Canada experienced a growth in business and many Americans flocked to Canada after the British were defeated. Mexican elites purchased land in Mexico that would be used for farming and animals.
The Little Ice Age Took place in the 14thto 19th Century. Starvation: Crops failed due to freezing temperatures. Livestock couldn’t go outside and became weak which resulted in death. Rivers froze killing off fish. Prolonged rain storms flattened crops. Disease: Rats went into houses due to the cold and ended up giving Europe the Bubonic Plague. Malaria decreased since mosquitoes could not plant eggs in frozen lakes. Inventions: Europeans learned potatoes wouldn’t fail in the cold temperatures. The violin was invented since more time was spent indoors.
Frontiers of the Americas Louisiana Purchase: Jefferson wanted the ports of Louisiana for trading purposes and this purchase showed the U.S. was a world power and would not let Spain and France block their trading. America bought Louisiana for 15 million dollars. Spain did not want to be neighbors with the Americans. This purchase allowed the Americans to continue their westward expansion. Expansion of Knowledge: Prince Maximillian of Wied-Neuwied collected samples of flora and Fauna, learned Indian cultures such as dancing, and sketched what the Indians looked like on his expedition in North America.
Frontiers of the Americas Violence: La Republica Oriental del Uruguay fought with Brazilian invaders. Jefferson forcefully kicked the Native Americans out of Missouri. Slaves were used brutally by the French which had to bring in 50,000 new slaves each year. There were 3 Uruguayan wars of independence and one major Paraguayan war. Revolutions: 3 Uruguayan revolutions (1870-1872, 1897, 1904). Brazilian Federalist revolution (1893-1895). Brazilian revolution (1923). French revolution.
Crossroads of Freedom Slavery: primary issue of the Civil War. An ongoing cotton famine affected European attitude on slavery since cotton was grown by the slaves. The British Navy policed against the trading of slaves. The Confederates drafted slaves before they drafted White men. Slaves worked as Army laborers, cooks, musicians, and servants for the Confederate Army. By capturing slaves the Union would reduce the size of the Confederate Army. Foreign policy helped push Lincoln toward the Emancipation Proclamation in 1862. Britain abolished slavery in 1833 and France did the same in 1848. Caught slaves by the Union Army could not be returned to their masters.
Crossroads of Freedom Abraham Lincoln: His main goal of the Civil War was to make the U.S. a united nation and had to defeat the Confederates to do so. On slavery said, “I cannot imagine that any European power would dare to recognize and aid the Southern Confederacy if it became clear the Confederacy stands for slavery and the Union for freedom.” In March 1862 he told border states he would send aid for them if they abolished slavery. The London Times said this of Lincoln, “ … Mr. Lincoln will wait til the rising flames tell all that is consummated and then he will rub his hands and think that revenge is sweet.” (page 144) Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation after the Battle of Antietam.
Crossroads of Freedom Battle of Antietam: It is estimated that 6,300 to 6,500 were killed making it the single bloodiest day in American History. (page 177) Karl Marx said Antietam “has decided the fate of the American Civil War.” (page 8) The Union morale was boosted tremendously by this victory and it crushed the morale of the Confederates. This victory by the Union made Britain forget about intervening. This battle was the beginning of the end of the Civil War and prompted General Halleck to say, “… we must conquer the rebels or be conquered by them.” (page 139) The French (on the side of the Confederacy) tried to encourage the British and Russians to intervene with them following this battle.
Crossroads of Freedom George B. McClellan: At 34 yrs old was appointed by Lincoln to take command of the Army of Potomac. Was nicknamed “ the young Napoleon”. Although he worked for the Union he opposed abolitionists. Was viewed as a hero by his men and they had full confidence in him even though he was afraid to take risks. His plan for Antietam was to keep a large group of soldiers in reserve and charge after Confederates when they fled. Removed from command by Lincoln on November 7, 1862. McClellan ran against Lincoln in the presidential election of 1864 as a Democratic candidate.