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Acts in US History

Act title, Year, and description of Acts in US History

TermDefinition
Act of Toleration - 1649 Act proposed by Cecilius Calvert(Lord Baltimore) to allow for toleration of both Protestants & Catholics in Maryland
Halfway Covenant - 1622 Act loosening the requirements for church membership in Puritan Massachusetts
Proclamation of 1763 Act passed by British Parliament restricting colonial settlement to land east of the Appalachian Mountains
Stamp Act - 1765 Direct tax placed on the American colonies by British Parliament -led to one of the 1st organized protests
Townshend Acts- 1767 Series of taxes place on colonies to pay for continued occupation by British troops
Intolerable Acts - 1774 Series of 4 acts to punish the city of Boston for the damage caused by the Boston Tea Party
Quebec Act - 1774 Established Catholicism as the official religion of the Quebec region which included: Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan,Wisconsin, & Minnesota
Land Ordinance - 1785 Passed by the Article of Confederation Congress, it established an orderly method for surveying & selling western land- Townships & Homesteads
Northwest Ordinance - 1787 Passed by the Article of Confederation Congress, it established the method by which a new territory could join the union as states
Alien & Sedition Acts - 1798 Series of acts sponsored by the Federalists imposing severe restrictions on aliens out of fear of treason. Attempt to limit power of Jefferson's Democratic-Republican Party
Embargo Act- 1807 Forbade US maritime trade with foreign nations- signed by Jefferson in order to maintain American neutrality during the Napoleonic Wars
Non-Intercourse Act - 1809 Repealed the Embargo Act with regards to all nations except Britain & France
Missouri Compromise - 1820 Admitted Missouri as a slave state and Maine as a free state preserving sectional balance- set the southern border of Missouri as the future between slave & free states - provision was ruled unconstitutional by the Dred Scott decision of 1857
Tariff of 1828 AKA Tariff of Abominations, opposition led to the resignation of John C. Calhoun as Vice President
Indian Removal Act - 1830 Andrew Jackson's forcible removal of the Five Civilized Tribes from the south - Trail of Tears
Compromise of 1850 Series of 5 laws intended to compromise on the issue of slavery in the lands acquired after the Mexican War. California was admitted as a free state
Kansas-Nebraska Act - 1862 Provided for the admission of Kansas & Nebraska with or without slavery, repealed the Missouri Compromise
Homestead Act - 1862 Provided for the distribution of western lands to US citizens. Homesteaders were given 160 acres of free land in exchange for a pledge to “improve” the land within five years.
Wade-Davis Bill- 1864 Radical Reconstruction plan passed by Congressional Republicans but later vetoed by Lincoln. The plan called for 50% of citizens of reconstructed states to take an oath swearing that they never supported the Confederacy.
Tenure of Office Act- 1868 Prohibited the president from removing officials properly appointed by the Senate. Andrew Johnson violated this leading to his impeachment.
Bland-Allison Act - 1878 Required the Treasury to monthly, limited purchases of silver for coinage. Congress was required to purchase between $2 and $4 Million worth of silver. The act was later replaced by the 1890 Sherman Silver Purchase Act.
Chinese Exclusion Act - 1882 A reversal of the 1868 Burlingame Treaty, this act prohibited the immigration from China.
Pendleton Act - 1883 Provided for the objective appointment of civil service positions on the basis of merit. The Pendleton Act was sparked by the assassination of James Garfield.
Interstate Commerce Act - 1887 Created the Interstate Commerce Commission and forced all railway charges to be fair and reasonable. The act’s passage was a response to protests from farmer’s groups.
Sherman Antitrust Act - 1890 Authorized the federal government to dissolve a trust. The act was weak, and was even used to restrict the power of labor unions.
Sherman Silver Purchase Act - 1890 Replaced the Bland-Allison Act; required the treasury to purchase 4.5 million ounces of silver at market value per month
Foraker Act - 1900 Established the government of the newly acquired territory of Puerto Rico. The Insular Cases declared that citizenship was not automatically bestowed upon people in newly acquired territories
Pure Food and Drug Act - 1906 Forbade the manufacture, sale, or transportation of "adulterated" or mislabeled foods or drugs in interstate commerce. This was a direct response to Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle.
Meat Inspection Act - 1906 Aimed to eliminate the dangerous and unsanitary conditions in the meat-packing industry. This was a direct response to Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle.
Clayton Antitrust Act - 1914 Strengthened the Sherman Antitrust Act, was more specific as to what actions constituted a "trust".
Espionage Act - 1917 Provided severe penalties for persons found guilty of aiding the enemy or refusal to serve in the US military.
Volstead Act - 1919 Provided for the enforcement of the 18th Amendment (Prohibition)
Adjusted Compensation Act - 1924 Provided for the payment of adjusted compensation (bonus) to all veterans of WWI. It was payment of this bonus that the Bonus Army was after when they marched on Washington(1931)
Hawley-Smoot Tariff - 1930 Sharp increase of tariff rates on more than 20,000 imported goods. Most economists blame the this tariff with sinking the U.S. deeper into the Depression.
Reconstruction Finance Corporation - 1932 An attempt by Herbert Hoover to address the problems of the Great Depression by giving billions of dollars in loans to banks and businesses. The act was criticized because it did not give direct relief to the poor.
Norris-LaGuardia Act - 1932 Also known as the “Anti-Injunction Act”, it barred federal courts from issuing injunctions to halt labor disputes. The act also outlawed the “yellow-dog contract”.
National Industrial Recovery Act - 1933 Created the National Recovery Administration (NRA) & the Public Works Administration (PWA).
Federal Emergency Relief Act - 1933 Created the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) to aid the states through grants
Agricultural Adjustment Act - 1933 Established the Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA) which paid farmers subsidies to farm less land and therefore drive crop prices up.
Glass-Steagall Act - 1933 Created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for guaranteeing individual bank deposits
Wagner Act - 1935 Also known as the National Labor Relations Act, created the National Labor Relations Board
Lend-Lease Act - 1941 Enabled any country whose defense is deemed necessary to the nation to acquire arms and other war supplies from the US.
Taft-Hartley Act - 1947 Passed over Truman’s veto, this act heavily restricted the actions of Unions including banning the "closed shop" and forbidding union contributions to political campaigns. Allowed the federal government to apply for injunctions to stop strikes.
National Security Act - 1947 Combined all military departments into a single department, Defense. James Forrestal was the first Secretary of Defense
Civil Rights Act - 1964 Among other provisions, it outlawed discrimination in employment on the basis of race, religion, or sex. It created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to investigate claims of discrimination.
Voting Rights Act - 1965 Eliminated literacy and other tests as requirements for voting
Occupational Safety and Health Act - 1970 OSHA mandated that employers provide employment "free from recognized hazards to employees"
War Powers Act - 1973 Set a sixty day limit on the presidential commitment of troops to hostilities abroad without Congressional approval.
Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act- 1985 Required Congress to balance the budget.
McCain-Feingold Act - 2002 Regulates campaign financing. Specifically, it targets “soft money” contributions and “issue ads” not financed by a specific candidate.
National Environmental Policy Act - 1969 Protection of the environment
Medicare and Medicaid Act - 1965 Medical care for the elderly and poor
Sedition Act - 1918 Piece of legislation designed to protect America's participation in World War I.
Child Abuse Prevention and Enforcement Act - 2000 Federal law enforcement funds by States to improve the criminal justice system related to the protection of children, including protection against child sexual abuse, and placement of children in foster care
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act - 2010 To amend the Public Health Service Act in order to provide better health-care coverage for all Americans, improve health-care services for under-served communities, and for other purposes.
No Child Left Behind - 2001 Improve the performance of America’s elementary and secondary schools while at the same time ensuring that no child is trapped in a failing school.
USA Patriot Act - 2001 Strengthen domestic security and broaden the powers of law-enforcement agencies with regards to identifying and stopping terrorists - created after World Trade Center attacks
North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act - 1993 Created the world’s largest free trade zone - Canada, United States, & Mexico
Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act - 1993 Required a background check before the purchase of a handgun and establishing a National Instant Check System
Bankruptcy Act - 2005 The first major overhaul of bankruptcy in 27 years limits individuals from seeking bankruptcy and thereby erasing debt. New costs imposed for those seeking bankruptcy.
Family and Medical Leave Act - 1993 Enabled millions of workers to take up to 12 weeks unpaid leave to care for a new baby or ailing family member without jeopardizing their job.
Violence Against Women Act - 1994 stablished a nationwide 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline. This initiative represents the first federal effort to address domestic violence and violence against women.
Created by: caddotrouble