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AP United States History Key Terms Explained

Welcome Juniors, Seniors, and College Students who are currently in enrolled in AP United States History (APUSH) along with anyone else looking to enlighten themselves with the history of America. As most of you are currently experiencing this, APUSH is a very intensive course filled with hours of work each week and more information to be learned than you ever thought possible. I know, I have taken this class and it was rough to say the least. So to save you from the same misery, I have collected over 100 key terms to know over the course of Units 1-3. If these helped you at all, pleased feel free to check out my new book “AP United States History Short-Answer Guide” containing answers for over 180 short-answer questions about key points over the course of 90 lessons. Enjoy!

Unit 1

 

Native Religion – animism; tribe-specific religions and beliefs

 

Native Population – some permanent; didn’t OWN land; no livestock

 

Gender Roles – matrilineal; men hunted; women farmed and did household duties

 

European Expansion – Found America while searching for an eastern trade route; Christopher Columbus

 

Columbian Exchange – Europe, Africa, America; plants, animals, diseases, culture, slaves, technology

 

Spanish Exploration – Treaty of Tordisllas; Christianize natives; Encomienda = Native American slaves; Repartimiendo = freed slaves; founded Florida; in search of gold

 

Pueblo Revolt – Popé led Pueblo warriors; killed400 men; forced the Spanish out of their capital

 

Dutch Expansion – freedom of press and religion; many fled to the Netherlands

 

French and Dutch Exploration – economic purposes; never had a large population

 

French Expansion – gold and northwest passage; made trade networks with the Indians

 

English Exploration – Sir Walter Raleigh sent colonists to Roanoke; everyone disappeared; Treaty of London ended war with Spanish; Virginia Company; Chesapeake Bay

 

French Colonization – Fur-trading Company; Quebec all-males; found Mississippi River

 

Dutch Colonization – Dutch East Indian Company; Fort Nassau; New Amsterdam=Dutch New World capital; most religiously tolerant

 

The English and the Indians – wanted land; displaced many Indians; Indians became dependent of English goods

 

English Colonization – granted charters for colonies in North America; England spread others religions

 

The Chesapeake – Jamestown; John Smith in charge; headright system = 50 acres; House of Burgesses = only landowners could vote; Virginia = first royal colony

 

Tobacco Boom – John Rolfe smuggled in tobacco; England profited; need for indentured servants

 

Indentured Servitude – sold 5-7 years of service for a passage to the New World; close to slaves

 

Indians at Jamestown – captured John Smith; saved by Pocahontas; Opechancanough killed 300 colonists; English retaliated

 

Bacon’s Rebellion – increased demands for slaves; consisted of former servant on the frontier

 

Maryland – proprietary colony; Lord Baltimore; Protestants and Christians could coexist

 

Puritanism – The Crucible

 

The Great Migration – Puritans emigrated to Massachusetts; Massachusetts was healthier; greater pop.

 

The Half-Way Covenant – permitted Great Migration emigrant’s grandchildren to be baptized and accept a lower church membership

 

New England Puritans – Pilgrims; Plymouth; Mayflower Compact; first Thanksgiving with Indians who helped them; self-governing

 

Religious Conflict in New England – Roger Williams=separation for church and state; Anne Hutchinson=God spoke to her, not through a minister; Fundamental Orders= first constitution

 

Indians in New England – savages; obstacle to land; feared people would leave to live in the Indians

 

The Salem Witch Trials – mass hysteria caused by young girls

 

Destroyed By Disease – Indians were wiped out; believed disease was the Indians punishment by God; lost natives as a source for slaves, turned to West Africa to import slaves

 

The Pequot War – killed an English fur-trader; soldiers wiped out the Pequot village killing 500 indians

 

King Philip’s War – war for land; Metacom=King Philip; Iroquois allies

 

Ecological Changes – imported European domestic animals and plants; dramatically shaped nature; Indians killed wandering animals

 

African Slavery – slavery existed before Europeans came; slave trading began in Spanish colonies

 

American Indian Views – believed Europeans to be insensitive to living nature and inexperienced in distinguishing helpful and harmful resources

 

European Views – primitive; savages; illiterate and below them; no sense of freedom

 

The Navigation Acts – Mercantilism= national power comes from money; sold only to England

 

Political Changes in England – Glorious Revolution overthrew James II; William and Mary now in charge; Parliament continued to restrict self-government

 

Leisler’s Rebellion – Leisler took control of New York; separated colonists based on status; tyrant

 

The English in New York – Charter of Liberties and Privieges=reinforced traditional English liberties

 

The Carolinas – blocked Spanish expansion; eight landholders

 

Pennsylvania – William Penn; freedom of religion; stemmed from Quakers; peace

 

The Middle Passage – Triangular trade between Europe, Africa, and Americas; slave trade

 

West Indies Slavery – imported slaves to work in sugar plantations; strenuous crop

 

Chesapeake Slavery – first Africans (1619) could eventually gain their freedom; 1660s it was referred to as slavery

 

The Stono Rebellion – slave uprising; South Carolina; killed any whites they encountered; temporarily decreased slave imports

 

More Conflict in New England – Massachusetts became a royal colony; land ownership, not church membership, was needed to vote

 

Georgia – Protect South Carolina; consisted of those who had been imprisoned in England

Characteristics of Colonial Societies – stratification=defined rich and poor; middle colonies=diversity and acceptance; more children; women had few rights

 

Colonial Economics – raw materials for Britain; South=tobacco; Middle=rice and indigo

Religion and the Great Awakening – Edwards started Great Awakening; New Lights; people could understand the Bible on their own; all colonies shared this experience

 

The French and Indian War – Britain tried to drive the French out of North America; Ben Franklin= Albany Plan of Union

 

Removing the French from North America – Pitt became Prime Minister; conquered Quebec; Peace of Paris (1763) removed France from North America; British was a dominate power in the New World; colonists dislike the treatment they received

 

Pontiac’s Rebellion – the Ottawa people attacked Britain colonists in 1763; British forces were sent to protect the colonists; this ended the idea of salutary neglect

 

Proclamation of 1763 – line of demarcation= settlers couldn’t go west of the Appalachian Mountains; most colonists ignored this line and settle west

 

Unit 2

 

Religious Revival – Second Great Awakening; emotion; Methodist/Baptists grew

 

British Raise Revenue – Currency, Sugar, and Quartering Act – Stamp Act crossed the line

 

Colonial Reaction – Stamp Act Congress (only colonies could tax colonists); Grenville pointed out virtual representation

 

Colonial Boycott – Sons and Daughters of Liberty; Sam Adams; repealed Stamp Act

 

Townshend Act – glass, paper, and tea; writs of assistance; boycotts led to repeal

 

Boston Responds to taxes – Quartering Act angered colonists and led to the Boston Massacre; Committees of Correspondence; Daughters of Liberty; Boston Tea Party; Intolerable Acts

 

First Continental Congress – Declaration of Rights and Grievances, denied by king

 

The Fight Begins – Lexington; Bunker Hill; French joined after the Battle of Saratoga

 

Second Continental Congress – Olive Branch Petition denied; Common Sense rallied colonists; Thomas Jefferson rights the Declaration of Independence

 

Independence, Not Dependence – Patriots, Loyalists, and unaffected; Treaty of Paris recognized the U.S. as a country

 

Indians and the Revolution – Treaty of Greenville ceded Ohio and Indiana; annuity given to Indians

 

Shay’s Rebellion – farmers angered by taxes; led to the Constitutional Convention to revise the Articles of Confederation

 

Impact of Enlightenment – John Locke = natural rights; reason over emotion

 

Articles of Confederation – Ratified in 1781; wage war, make treaties, and borrow money; couldn’t tax

 

Constitutional Convention (terms below)

 

Postwar Problems – economic depression; Barbary pirates raided merchant ships

 

Secret Meeting – young wealthy men; none from Rhode Island or radicals; kept convention a secret

Madison Takes Charge – advocated for a central government; Separation of powers; Articles would be thrown out

 

Great Compromise – Virginia = proportional; New Jersey = equal rep; Great Compromise = house of rep and senate

 

Executive Decision – Electoral College; president was commander in chief, diplomat, veto laws

 

Three-Fifths Compromise – Northwest Ordinance; end importation of slaves in 1808; slaves counted for 3/5 of a person

 

New Set of Laws – Land Ordinance = pay off national debt with land; Northwest Ordinance = guidelines for attaining statehood; slavery banned north of the Ohio River

 

Federalists vs. Anti-Federalists – Federalists = constitution; Anti = strong states; Promised Bill of Rights; The Federalists Papers

 

Structuring the New Republic – Jefferson as secretary; Hamilton as treasurer; Knox as war; Randolph as attorney general; known as cabinet members; Judiciary Act of 1789

 

Internal Issues – Indian uprisings as America expanded West; Whiskey Rebellion; Public Land Act = clear procedures for settlement

 

Hamilton Fixes Finances – debt repayment, stable currency, and banking system; pay all debts plus interest

 

Disagreement over Bank – Jefferson opposed bank; elastic clause; Anti-Federalists became Democratic-Republicans

 

Foreign Policy – Neutrality Proclamation for the French Revolution; led to impressing sailors; Jay’s Treaty removed British forts in the West

 

XYZ Affair and Avoiding War – delegates arrived in France and were confronted by 3 agents demanding money; Convention of 1800 ended Franco-American Alliance

Alien and Sedition Acts – Alien Acts = 14 years to become a citizen; Sedition Act = illegal to criticize the president

 

Revolution of 1800 – Jefferson and Burr tied in election; Hamilton swayed vote towards Jefferson; peaceful transfer from Federalists to Democratic-Republicans

 

Jefferson’s Challenges – Yazoo Land Controversy (Mississippi) saw it as a bribe

 

Louisiana Purchase – brought from Napoleon for $15 million and doubled the size of America; Lewis and Clark explored and documented the West

 

Marshall Court – Adams appointed “midnight judges;” established Judicial Review; Jefferson tried to impeach Federalist judges but failed

 

Battles with Aaron Burr – Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel and killed him; Burr Conspiracy = take Mexico from Spain

 

Jefferson and Troubles Abroad – Tripolitan War = fought pirates for 4 years; France and Britain confiscated merchant ships; Embargo Act = prohibited foreign trade – repealed in 2 years

 

The War of 1812 – Second war of Independence; Battle of New Orleans fought after war was over Treaty of Ghent = pre-war boundaries; started the industrial revolution

 

Ideology Divides the U.S. – Split between New England and the rest of the nation; Hartford Convention

 

Era of Good Feelings – James Monroe as president; very patriotic time

 

Missouri Compromise – Tallmadge Amendment = emancipation of slaves at 25 and no new slaves brought in; Henry Clay created the Missouri Compromise which admitted Maine as a free state; 36° 30’ line

 

Temperance and America’s Health – American Temperance Society tried to end drinking; Maine Law = prohibited alcoholic beverages in the state; Dorothea Dix = instituted programs that taught prisoners job skills and increased access to religious services

 

Unit 3

 

Transportation Advances – Turnpikes connected towns; Erie Canal linked Great Lakes with the Hudson River; Steamboat in 1807; railroad before 1860; geographic division between North and South

 

Religious Revival – Second Great Awakening; Calvinist had a gentler approach than the Puritans; Charles Finney appealed to emotions; fire and brimstone; tent revivals; Methodists and Baptists

 

Immigrants/Social Structure – Irish competed for American jobs; Germans moved to frontier; nativists were against the foreign blood; led to the Know-Nothing Party

 

Second Party System – new democratic spirit after the Panic of 1819

 

Change in Electoral Process – “The Rise of the Common Man”; lower classes had political influence; eliminate property-owning requirement; citizens had more power than leaders; Anti-Masons challenged the two-party system

 

Mudslinging Election of 1824 – 4 Republican Party candidates; Henry Clay made John Quincy Adams president; Democrats supported Jackson; Whigs supported Henry Clay; two-party system reborn

 

Jackson’s Government – spoils system = supporters gained political positions; kitchen cabinet = Jackson’s unofficial cabinet; fresh opinions by rotating officials; male-only suffrage

 

Jackson vs. Native Americans – forced natives out of their homeland to expand west; Trail of Tears = all Cherokees removed from Georgia; 4,000 die on journey to Oklahoma

 

South and Tariffs – New Englanders supported Tariff of 1828; South declared it unconstitutional; South Carolina nullified Tariff of 1832 and threatened to secede; Jackson passed the Force Bill which allowed him to use military force to collect tariffs; new tariff in 1833 that slowly reduced the tariff

 

Bank of the U.S. – Panic of 1819 threatened Era of Good Feelings; Second Bank of U.S. tried to reduce inflation by demanding payment from state banks in hard specie; Western “wildcat” banks could pay and had to foreclose on farmers who failed to pay back their debt; led to landless farmers

 

Death of U.S. Bank – Jackson considered the bank a monopoly and vowed to end it; funds were removed from the U.S. bank and placed in “pet banks”; Specie Circular required all federal land to be purchased in hard specie; bank notes lost value and led to the Panic of 1837

 

Federal Authority Challenged – Marshall increased power of the federal government; declared that the federal government could establish the bank in McCulloch v. Maryland; declared New York could not issue a monopoly to a steamboat company in Gibbons v. Ogden

 

Jackson Exercises Veto Power – Jackson believed in states’ rights; Jackson vetoed more bills and refused to fund the Maysville Road Bill which only lay in one state; sought to expand democracy when it served his interests

 

Birth of American Culture – Ralph Waldo Emerson encouraged unique American identity; Hudson River School of painting characterized American art in the early 1800s; Knickerbockers developed “American” fiction; Hawthorne sparked questions of morality with the Scarlet Letter; Express pride in their Republic by incorporating Greek columns and Roman domes

 

Transcendentalists, Shakers, and Oneidas – Romanticism led to transcendentalists; Thoreau wrote Walden in which he lived in the woods for 2 years; Brook Farm, a utopian community meant to practice transcendentalism, collapsed because of debt; Shakers led by “Mother” Ann Lee discouraged sex; Oneida Commune shared everything

 

Mormonism – Joseph Smith founded the Mormon Church after translate the sacred text; Brigham Young took over after Smith was murdered; outsiders because of their differing beliefs of polygamy; Utah became a state after they dropped this practice

 

Abolition Movement – William Garrison founded the American Anti-Slavery Society; Liberty Party accepted women; Underground Railroad helped free many slaves; Nat Turner had a violent approach when he killed 55 white men, women, and children

 

Cult of Domesticity – women were define as homemakers and mothers; women’s rights movement combated the “cult”; discussed the issues at Seneca Falls; led to the Declaration of Sentiments which stated that “all men and women are created equal”

 

King Cotton and the Agrarian South – Cotton gin made cotton a cash crop; caused slavery to rapidly grow; Black Codes and Slave Codes were meant to oppress enslaved Africans and prevent slave revolts; plantation owners focused on driving the spirit of rebellion out of their slaves; worked as field hands, craftspeople, or house servants; Southerners who didn’t own slaves were ranked just above African-Americans

 


AP United States History Key Terms Explained

Welcome Juniors, Seniors, and College Students who are currently in enrolled in AP United States History (APUSH) along with anyone else looking to enlighten themselves with the history of America. As most of you are currently experiencing this, APUSH is a very intensive course filled with hours of work each week and more information to be learned than you ever thought possible. I know, I have taken this class and it was rough to say the least. So to save you from the same misery, I have collected over 100 key terms to know over the course of Units 1-3. If these helped you at all, pleased feel free to check out my new book “AP United States History Short-Answer Guide” containing answers for over 180 short-answer questions about key points over the course of 90 lessons. Enjoy!

  • Author: Ethan Koch
  • Published: 2015-12-10 03:20:07
  • Words: 2474
AP United States History Key Terms Explained AP United States History Key Terms Explained