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USH Unit 2

American Revolution and the Formation of the United States

TermDefinition
French and Indian War 1754-1763, nine year war in which the British fought against France and its Native American allies for control of North America. The British ultimately won.
Writs of Assistance general search warrants that allowed British authorities to search whatever they wanted and for whatever reason. The British used these writes to board and search colonial ships as a way of enforcing the Navigation Acts.
Proclamation of 1763 document issued by King George III, forbade colonists from settling west of the Appalachian Mountains and put the territory under British military control.
Stamp Act law which taxed nearly all printed material by requiring that it bear a government stamp.
“No Taxation Without Representation” protest made by colonists in which they appealed to the fact that they had no representation in Parliament as justification for why they should not be obligated to pay British taxes.
Declaratory Act This act stated that Parliament had the authority to impose on the colonies.
Boston Massacre March 5, 1770 in which British soldiers who felt threatened by a mob of angry protesters fired shots that left several colonists dead or dying. The event was depicted as a brutal slaying of innocent civilians and increased colonial resentment.
Boston Tea Party protest in which colonists dressed as Mohawk Indians, raided British ships, and dumped crates of British tea into the Boston Harbor.
Coerciv/Intolerable Acts Passed by Parliament in response to the Boston Tea Party, these acts closed Boston Harbor and placed a military governor over Massachusetts. In additions, England expanded the Candadian border, thereby taking land away from certain colonies.
First Continental Congress Meeting of colonial representatives (September 1774) to deal with oppressive British laws. Congress wrote that colonists had a right to be represented in their government and since they were not represented in Parliament, they could govern themselves
Lexington and Concord confrontation in which the first shots of the war were fired when the British tried to seize colonial militia weapons and leaders.
Second Continental Congress second meeting of colonial representatives convened in 1775 to deal with the events at Lexington and Concord. The Congress ultimately voted to declare independence.
Thomas Jefferson author of the Declaration of Independence, champion of the Democratic-Republicans (Anti-federalists) who believed in a strict interpretation of the Constitution, secretary of state to George Washington, and third president of the United States.
Egalitarianism the idea that all men were created equal.
Inalienable Rights natural rights that government cannot morally take away. Among these rights are “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”.
Declaration of Independence Document drafted by Thomas Jefferson and signed by representatives of the Second Continental Congress that official proclaims that the United States is a free and independent nation.
George Washington commander of the US Continental Army and first president of the United States.
Saratoga victory won by US forces under Horatio Gates that was especially important because it convinced the French that the US could possibly win the war and encouraged them to offer the US military assistance.
Yorktown site of the final major battle of the revolutionary war and where Cornwallis surrendered to Washington.
Articles of Confederation first attempt by the United Sates at a national body of laws. It failed because it did not give enogh power to the federal (national) government to lead effectively.
United States Constitution body of national laws for the United States of America which also serve as the framework of the nation’s government.
Great Compromise/ Connecticut Plan proposed/adopted at the Constitutional Convention. Congress = bicameral legislature. House of Representatives elected by the people. States granted House seats based on population. 2 state senators elected by state legislatures, regardless of population
Three-fifths Compromise compromise at the Constitutional Convention that stated that each slave would count as “three-fifths of a person” in terms of population.
Slave Trade Compromise Northerners who opposed the slave trade agreed to allow it to continue for twenty years, after which time Congress could impose regulations. This was important to Southerners who insisted that their economy could not survive without the slave trade.
Bill of Rights the first ten amendments (additions) to the Constitution which stem from many of the principles expressed in the Declaration of Independence and which are intended to protect the civil rights of citizens.
Federalists party that favored a strong central government and supported the Constitution. They tended to have a loose interpretation of the Constitution, favored the interest of business over agriculture, and were led by men like Alexander Hamilton.
Anti-Federalists opposed the Federalists. Wanted stronger state governments. Formed the foundation of the Democratic-Republican party. Favored farming over business and had strict interpretation of the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson was one of their main leaders.
Loose Interpretation of the Constitution The view that the Constitution grants the federal government the authority to take certain actions not specifically stated in the document so long as such actions are deemed necessary for carrying out the government’s constitutional responsibilities.
Strict Interpretation of the Constitution asserts the federal government can only do what the Constitution specifically says.
Federalist Papers written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay in order to make their case for the Constitution and to persuade New York’s legislature to ratify it.
Alexander Hamilton Washington’s secretary of the treasury and one of the Federalists main leaders. His economic plan helped the nation’s economy survive following ratification of the Constitution.
Federalists Party believed in a strong national government, felt that political power should be entrusted to the educated upper classes, and supported business over agriculture. Hamilton was a key figure in the Federalist party.
Democratic-Republican political party that arose in opposition to the Federalists. Their leader was Thomas Jefferson. They favored stronger state governments and a weaker national government.
Naturalization, Alien and Sedition Acts passed by the Federalists; residency requirements for citizenship, allowed arrest/detainment of suspicious foreigners, restricted free speech. angered Democratic-Republicans because they silenced Federalist critics and favored Federalist politically.
Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions These resolutions stated that if a state believed a federal law to be unconstitutional, then it did not have to obey or enforce it. They established the doctrine of nullification.
Doctrine of Nullification idea that states can nullify (not be bound by/ignore) a national law that they believe violates the Constitution.
Republic a form of government in which the people elect representatives to vote on matters, pass laws and set public policy for them.
Democracy a form of government in which the people rule by voting or voicing their opinions. As urban populations increased poorer citizens, immigrants and other “common people” gradually won greater say in government.
Separation of Powers system in which power is divided among more than one branch of government in order to prevent any one body or individual from becoming too powerful.
Checks and Balances system in which one branch of government has certain ways to “check” the powers of the other branches.
Federalism system in which power is shared between more than one level of government (ie, federal and state)
Legislative Branch branch responsible for making the laws (Congress)
House of Representatives house of Congress based on each states population.
Senate house of Congress in which each state has two representatives.
Executive Branch branch responsible for enforcing the laws (president, vice-president)
President of the United States chief executive of the United States and commander-in-chief of the nation’s military forces. Serves as the nation’s leader.
Judicial Branch branch of government responsible for making sure laws are administered appropriately.
Precedence when the court uses past legal decisions to make rulings of law because there is no written law or its meaning is open to debate.
Marbury v Madison court case that established the Supreme Court’s authority of judicial review.
John Marshall Chief Justice of the Supreme Court who wrote the majority opinion in Marbury v Madison.
Judicial Review power of the Supreme Court to declare acts of Congress and/or state legislatures unconstitutional.
Created by: amygilstrap7