Social Studies School Service
Our Guarantee

 

War Outline
For The Thematic Approach to U.S. History
  1. THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR
    1. Causes
      1. Economic - Because England was in debt from the French and Indian War, she imposed and was determined to collect various taxes.
        1. Sugar Act: tax on sugar and coffee. Although no one questioned this act, vice-admiralty court trials for violators angered people.
        2. Stamp Act: tax on all legal documents (birth, death, marriages, real estate). Since this was an internal tax (not a tariff) the colonies resented it. "No taxation without representation."
        3. Declaratory Act: England repealed the Stamp Act, but claimed Parliamentary right to make laws for the colonies
        4. Townshend Duties: external tax on glass, lead, tea, paint, and paper. Americans boycotted British goods in response.
        5. Tea Act and Coercive Acts (after Boston Tea Party)
      2. Political
        1. England did not have effective leadership under King George III.
        2. Strong leadership in America: Washington, Sam Adams, Jefferson, and Franklin.
        3. Colonial institutions, having operated democratically and with limited interference since early 17th century, felt that England was acting regressively.
        4. Taxation without direct representation in Parliament angered colonists.
        5. Original charters were being revoked.
      3. Violation of cherished legal rights as Englishmen
        1. Writs of Assistance -- general search warrants violated cherished rights.
        2. Criminal trials judged in vice-admiralty courts rather than by jury of one's peers in district where crime was allegedly committed.
        3. Quartering Act -- broke tradition of not quartering troops in peacetime.
      4. Philosophical
        1. Age of Enlightenment: John Locke (Right of revolution)
        2. Thomas Paine - "Common Sense"
      5. Emotional
        1. Boston Massacre
        2. Boston Tea Party
    2. Battles
      1. Lexington and Concord, April 1775
      2. Saratoga (1777) America victory. Turning point in war as France agreed to ally with America. Gave military aid and troops.
      3. Yorktown (1781) Cornwallis surrendered to Washington
    3. Results
      1. Independence of thirteen states
      2. Territory from Atlantic to Mississippi, but not Florida
      3. Nationalistic spirit
      4. Social reform: no entail or primogeniture, gradual emancipation of slaves in the North, elimination of religious requirements to vote, women began to receive more education.
      5. Influenced French Revolution in 1789 and colonial independence movements in the 19th and 20th centuries.
        (Washington's policy of isolationism and neutrality/Farewell Address)

  2. THE WAR OF 1812 (1812-1814)
    1. Causes
      1. Impressment of American sailors
      2. Problems with Indians in the Ohio River Valley
      3. England continued to maintain forts on frontier
      4. Agricultural depression
      5. War Hawks (Calhoun and Clay) wanted to expand to Canada and were anti-British
    2. Results
      1. The status quo was maintained in the Treaty of Ghent (1815)
      2. Increased nationalism
      3. Increased manufacturing
      4. Freedom of the seas restored
      5. Andrew Jackson became a war hero
        (The Monroe Doctrine, 1823)
        (The Oregon Treaty, 1846)

  3. THE MEXICAN WAR (1846-1848)
    1. Causes
      1. Mexico was newly independent from Spain and weak
      2. U.S. nationalist and expansionist
      3. The belief in manifest destiny/continental power
      4. The failure of the Slidell mission
      5. American troops sent to disputed territory (Rio Grande v. the Nueces River)
      6. Polk's expansionist platform
    2. Results
      1. Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, 1848
      2. U.S. became a continental power
      3. $15 million for California and New Mexico
      4. Rio Grande became the boundary of U.S. and Texas
      5. Increased tensions between North and South over slavery issue

  4. CIVIL WAR (1861-1865)
    1. Causes
      1. Slavery: (Constitutional Convention, Missouri Compromise, Abolitionist Crusade, Fugitive Slave Law, Underground Railroad, Kansas Nebraska Act, John Brown's raids, Dred Scott Decision, Uncle Tom's Cabin, Republican party platform (against extension of slavery in the territories).
      2. Economic: Different economy of North and South. North had manufacturing interests to protect. The South was agricultural, depended on slave labor, and had basically no manufactures. North desired a protective tariff.
      3. Political: North's strong central government under the Constitution and South's states' rights and right of nullification/secession.
      4. Emotional: John Brown's raids, Southern fear of a Northern abolition conspiracy, Northern fear of a Southern conspiracy to spread slavery everywhere, violence in Kansas and Congress.
    2. Battles
      Fort Sumter (April, 1861); Antietam (Sept., 1862), a Northern victory that allowed Lincoln to issue the Emancipation Proclamation; Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863), Northern victory and turning point in the war; Vicksburg, (July 4, 1863) divided South at the Mississippi River; Sherman's march (1864); Appomattox (April, 1865).
    3. Results
      1. Enormous loss of life (600,000)
      2. Secession no longer viable
      3. Southern bitterness toward the North
      4. Military occupation of the South
      5. Destruction of slavery and the plantation economy
      6. Industrial Revolution in the North
      7. Union restored

  5. SPANISH AMERICAN WAR (1898)
    1. Causes
      1. Cubans wanted independence from Spain
      2. Yellow press
      3. Business interests in Cuba
      4. The Maine
      5. Imperialism
      6. Belief in white man's burden
      7. Need for markets
    2. Results
      1. Cuban independence from Spain
      2. U.S. acquired Philippines, Puerto Rico, Guam and protectorate status of Cuba under the Platt Amendment
      3. U.S. established an empire without realization of risks
      4. Debate over the annexation of the Philippines, Treaty of Paris ratified by the Senate, the Philippines annexed

  6. WORLD WAR I (1917-1918 for the United States)
    1. Causes
      1. Violation of the freedom of the seas (U-Boat activity)
      2. Close ties with England and France
      3. The Zimmerman note
      4. "to make the world safe for democracy"
    2. Results
      1. U.S. emerged as a creditor nation
      2. The Versailles Treaty (reparations, war guilt clause, League of Nations, new European boundaries)
      3. Russian Revolution
      4. U.S. Senate rejected League, World Court, and Versailles Treaty
      5. Disillusionment and return to isolationism and neutrality
      6. The Red Scare
      7. Political and economic instability in Europe
      8. Disarmament conference and fear of another war

  7. WORLD WAR II (1941-1945)
    1. Causes
      1. Political and economic instability in Europe and Asia
      2. Reparations and War Guilt clause -- Versailles Treaty
      3. Woodrow Wilson's rejection of Racial Equality clause
      4. Fascist aggression
      5. Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor
      6. U.S. desire to help Great Britain in her "finest hour"
    2. Results
      1. Economic and political instability in Europe and Asia
      2. Atomic age
      3. Creation of the United Nations
      4. Iron Curtain/Russian domination of Eastern Europe
      5. Marshall Plan
      6. Occupation of Japan and Germany
      7. Division of Korea
      8. NATO
      9. Emergence of Third World/Colonial independence movements

  8. THE COLD WAR (1945-1989)
    1. Causes
      1. Soviet aggression
      2. U.S. fears of communist ideology
      3. Wartime differences between Allied Powers/Yalta and Potsdam
      4. Civil War in China and Communist Revolution in 1949
      5. Russian success in testing atomic bomb
      6. Emerging Third World nations and U.S. competition with Soviet Union for allies
      7. McCarthyism
    2. Results
      1. Containment policy and arms race from 1945-1989
      2. U.S. and USSR in debt
      3. Korean War
      4. War in Vietnam
      5. Events from Truman's administration to Bush's administration that relate to Cold War (see Presidential Time Chart)
      6. Relative decline of U.S. and rise of a belligerent USSR
      7. U.S. economic and political involvement in various countries
      8. Creation of CIA and National Security Council
      9. Growth of Imperial Presidency

  9. THE KOREAN WAR (1950-1953)
    1. Causes
      1. Invasion of North Korean forces into South Korea
      2. U.S. belief that Soviet Union was behind North Korean invasion
      3. A civil war between North and South Korea
      4. U.S. belief in policy of containment
      5. U.N. Security Council vote
    2. Results
      1. Armistice and divided country at the 38th parallel
      2. North Korea remained communist
      3. South Korea now democratic
      4. As a result of armistice U.S. believed it could contain communism anywhere; this led to involvement in Vietnam
      5. Continued tension between North and South Korea

  10. WAR IN VIETNAM (1950-1975)
    1. Causes
      1. The containment policy
      2. Support of French in Indochina
      3. Support of South Vietnam after Geneva Accords
      4. Arrogance of power
      5. The belief that U.S. had successfully contained communism in Korea
      6. Belief in domino theory
      7. Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (1964)
    2. Battles/Key Dates
      Tet Offensive (1968); Armistice (1973); Loss of Vietnam (1975)
    3. Results
      1. 58,000 U.S. dead, one million Asians
      2. Destruction of Vietnam
      3. Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos become communist
      4. U.S. loss of a war for first time/symbol of U.S. decline
      5. Cost of over $150 billion
      6. Boat people
      7. End of Great Society
      8. Domestic unrest
      9. Tension between U.S. and allies
      10. Disillusionment with federal government
      11. War Powers Resolution
Back to The Thematic Approach to U.S. History