About This Chapter
How it works:
- Identify the lessons in the McDougal Littell The Americans Union in Peril chapter with which you need help.
- Find the corresponding video lessons within this companion course chapter.
- Watch fun videos that cover the Civil War topics you need to learn or review.
- Complete the quizzes to test your understanding.
- If you need additional help, rewatch the videos until you've mastered the material or submit a question for one of our instructors.
Students will learn:
- Slavery in early America
- Bloody Kansas
- New political parties that emerged as the result of slavery
- Dred Scott v. Sandford
- The Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858
- The raid at Harpers Ferry
- Lincoln's election
- The Confederacy
- Start of the Civil War
- Northern and Southern advantages of the Civil War
- The First Battle of Bull Run
- Important Civil War battles of 1862
- The Emancipation Proclamation
- Impact of the Civil War on daily life in the North and South
- Turning points of the Civil War
- The Gettysburg Address
- Sherman's March to the Sea
- The re-election of Lincoln
- Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox
- Costs of the Civil War
- Assassination of President Lincoln
- Lincoln's plan for Reconstruction
- President Andrew Johnson's plan for Reconstruction
- Reconstruction Amendments
- The radical Republican Reconstruction plan
- Andrew Johnson's impeachment
- The election of Ulysses S. Grant
- Effects of Reconstruction in the South
- Reconstruction's affect on African Americans
- The Redeemers
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1. Slavery in Early America: Characteristics & Opposition
The institution of slavery in early America was a source of both economic profits and divisive tensions. It began as a peculiar institution of colonial society and blossomed into a sectional issue that threatened to destroy the young United States.
2. Bloody Kansas: Causes, Effects and Summary of Events
The events in the Kansas territory were a microcosm of the violent forces shaping the United States in the decade of the 1850s, forces that would ultimately lead to a disintegration of the Union itself. This lesson details what has come to be known as Bleeding Kansas and its impact on the issue of slavery.
3. Dred Scott v. Sanford: Case Summary & Decision
In this lesson, we will explore the famous Dred Scott v. Sanford Supreme Court case. We will learn about the case's background, the court's findings, and the impact of this landmark decision.
4. The Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1858: Summary & Significance
In an effort to secure their own appointments to the U.S. Senate, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas squared off in a series of seven debates in 1858. Find out why Douglas might have won in the short term but Lincoln won in the long term.
5. John Brown's Raid at Harpers Ferry: Fighting Slavery
John Brown was a man of strong convictions - so strong that he was willing to fight, to kill, and to die for them. These abolitionist beliefs led him from Kansas to Virginia, where he would pay the ultimate price. This lesson tells that story.
6. Lincoln's Election, Southern Secession & the New Confederacy
Learn about how Abraham Lincoln's election in the contentious 1860 presidential race set off a domino effect leading to the secession of South Carolina and six other states and the formation of the Confederate States of America.
7. The Creation of the Confederacy: Leadership & Goals
In this lesson, we will take a look at the 1861 creation of the Confederate States of America. We will examine the new country's government, meet its leaders, and learn about its goals.
8. The Battle of Fort Sumter & the Start of the Civil War
South Carolina's attack on a U.S. military outpost triggered the American Civil War. Learn more about the Battle of Fort Sumter and the consequences of the fort's surrender to the Confederacy.
9. Civil War Begins: Northern and Southern Advantages Compared
At the outbreak of the American Civil War, both the North and South believed the conflict would be over quickly. But advantages for both the Confederacy and the Union meant a prolonged war between the states. In this lesson, discover some of the advantages that the North and South had.
10. The First Battle of Bull Run: Civil War Blood is Shed
Three months after the bombardment of Fort Sumter, Northern troops attacked Southern forces near the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. The first Battle of Bull Run (or Manassas) was the first major engagement of the Civil War and a terrifying defeat for the Union spectators who came to watch.
11. Key Civil War Battles in 1862: Monitor and Merrimac, Antietam, New Orleans & Shiloh
In 1862, the Union put its Anaconda Plan into action, resulting in several critical events: the Peninsular Campaign, the Battle of Hampton Roads between the ironclads Monitor and Virginia (Merrimack), the Battle of Shiloh, the capture of New Orleans, and the Battle of Antietam.
12. The Emancipation Proclamation: Creation, Context and Legacy
On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation went into effect. More than three million slaves in the South were freed, but the move was not without its critics, both then and now.
13. Civilian Reaction in the Confederacy to the War: The Impact on Daily Life & the Economy
In this lesson, we will study the Confederate home front. We will examine how the Civil War affected the South's government, economy, and social fabric, and we will see how the Southerners faced destruction and displacement throughout the war.
14. How the Civil War Affected the Economy and Everyday Life in the North and South
With the strongest and most productive demographic of society away fighting in the Civil War, the task of running homes, communities, and the nation fell to those who stayed behind. The war on the home front changed their lives forever.
15. Civil War Turning Points: Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Vicksburg
In 1863, three events proved to be turning points for the American Civil War: the Battle of Chancellorsville, the Battle of Gettysburg and the Siege of Vicksburg. Learn about these Civil War turning points in this lesson.
16. Gettysburg Address: Summary & Analysis
This lesson discusses the Gettysburg Address, one of the most famous speeches in American history. Learn more about what Abraham Lincoln's speech means and test your knowledge with a quiz.
17. Sherman's March to the Sea
In 1864, General William T. Sherman began his Atlanta campaign. His success assured Lincoln's re-election in 1864. Sherman then began his destructive March to the Sea in order to capture Savannah.
18. The Politics of 1864: President Abraham Lincoln is Re-Elected
In this lesson, we will explore the turbulent political landscape of 1864, focusing especially on that year's presidential campaign that pitted incumbent Abraham Lincoln against General George McClellan.
19. General Robert E. Lee's Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse: Terms & Conditions
In this lesson, we will explore the events leading up to Confederate General Robert E. Lee's surrender to Union General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House on April 9th, 1865.
20. The Costs of the Civil War: Human, Economic & Cultural
This lesson will explore the costs of the Civil War. We will examine the economic costs of the four-year conflict; its cultural costs, especially in the South; and its human costs, particularly casualties and veterans' post-war experiences.
21. The Assassination of President Abraham Lincoln: Facts, Failed Plots & Motivation
This lesson will explore the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. We will discuss the plots against Lincoln's life, the motivation of his assassin, and the murderous attack on April 14, 1865, that deprived a man of his life and a country of its president.
22. President Lincoln's Legacy: Plans for a Reconstructed Union
Before the guns of the American Civil War fell silent, President Abraham Lincoln was making plans for the reconstruction of the South. In this lesson, learn what his plans involved and the controversy surrounding them.
23. President Andrew Johnson: Attempts to Continue Lincoln's Reconstruction Plan
When President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, the task of Reconstruction fell to President Andrew Johnson. He was soon at odds with many different factions in the nation. While Johnson was not successful in domestic policy, his administration had a few foreign successes.
24. The Reconstruction Amendments: The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments
Between 1865 and 1870, during the historical era known as Reconstruction, the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution were ratified to establish political equality for all Americans. Together, they are known as the Reconstruction Amendments.
25. The Radical Republican Plan for Reconstruction: The Reconstruction Acts & Civil Rights Act
In this lesson, we will explore the Radical Republicans' plan to reconstruct the South after the Civil War. We will discuss Congress' efforts to extend the Freedmen's Bureau and to pass the Civil Rights and Reconstruction Acts.
26. The Impeachment of Andrew Johnson: Conflict Between President and Congress
Congressional Reconstruction, guided by Radical Republicans, aggressively pursued political equality for African Americans as defined by several pieces of legislation and the 14th Amendment. Conflict between Congress and President Andrew Johnson escalated until he was impeached.
27. President Ulysses S. Grant: Election, Successes and Corruption
Ulysses S. Grant, the Union hero of the Civil War, was elected in 1868, the last U.S. president to have been a slave owner. Despite his popularity, the nation faced social, economic and political difficulties, and his administration was shrouded in corruption.
28. Reconstruction in the South: Positive & Negative Effects
In this lesson, we'll explore the positive and negative effects of Reconstruction on the people of the South. We'll look at rights and opportunities for African Americans, economic growth, resentment and violence, and the sharecropping system.
29. Reconstruction's Effects on African Americans: Politics, Education and Economy
The era in U.S. history known as Reconstruction presented many new opportunities to African Americans, especially in the South. For the first time, freedmen were free to pursue economic independence, education, religion and politics. These pursuits are embodied in the accomplishments of four men: Alonzo Herndon, Booker T. Washington, Jonathan Gibbs and Hiram Revels.
30. The Redeemers: Definition & History
In this lesson, we will explore the reactions of white Southerners to Reconstruction. We will examine their grievances, discuss their sometimes violent backlash, and take a look at their political efforts to regain control of the South.
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Other chapters within the McDougal Littell The Americans: Online Textbook Help course
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 1: Exploration and the Colonial Era
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 2: Revolution and Early Republic
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 3: Growth of A Young Nation
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 5: Changes on the Western Frontier
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 6: A New Industrial Age
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 7: Immigrants and Urbanization
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 8: Life at the Turn of the Century
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 9: Progressive Era
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 10: America Claims an Empire
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 11: The First World War
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 12: Politics of the Roaring 20s
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 13: The Roaring Life of the 20s
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 14: The Great Depression Begins
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 15: The New Deal
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 16: World War Looms
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 17: The United States in WWII
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 18: Cold War Conflicts
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 19: The Post War Booms
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 20: The New Frontier and the Great Society
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 21: Civil Rights
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 22: The Vietnam Years
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 23: An Era of Social Change
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 24: An Age of Limits
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 25: The Conservative Tide
- McDougal Littell The Americans Chapter 26: The United States in the World Today