About This Chapter
The Birth of the United States (1776-1800) - Chapter Summary
Use these lessons to refresh your knowledge of the United States' earliest years, from the time right after the American Revolution through the presidency of John Adams. Our instructors discuss the formation of a new type of government, look at events that influenced the country's development, such as the Whiskey Rebellion and the XYZ Affair, and report on some of the major personalities that shaped the young United States.
You'll learn how the U.S. Constitution was written and ratified, and explore its structure, including the Bill of Rights. After watching our video lessons, you should understand more about:
- The Articles of Confederation and their weaknesses
- The Great Compromise during the Constitutional Convention
- The new U.S. government
- Structure of the Constitution, including the Bill of Rights
- George Washington's life and presidency
- The Federalists and the Republicans
- The French Revolution and how the U.S. served as an inspiration
- John Adams' presidency
These brief lessons, averaging about five minutes, are taught by expert instructors who make them entertaining and informative. You can watch them anytime, anywhere, on a computer or mobile device. Short multiple-choice quizzes at the end of each lesson let you assess your knowledge.
1. Creating State Constitutions After the American Revolution
After the revolution, the states had to figure out what the rule of the people would be like. The early state constitutions and how they were drafted would inform the process and the resulting document that would become the U.S. Constitution.
2. The Articles of Confederation and the Northwest Ordinance
The Articles of Confederation was the new nation's founding document, but the government established under the Articles was too weak. The new central government had no way of raising revenue and no ability to enforce the commitments made by the states. The Northwest Ordinance paved the way for the growth of the new nation.
3. Weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation and Shays Rebellion
The Articles of Confederation were too weak to create an effective government for the new nation. In this lesson, discover how Shays' Rebellion proved that the national government needed to strengthen.
4. The Constitutional Convention: The Great Compromise
The Constitutional Convention was intended to amend the Articles of Confederation. Instead, those in attendance set out to found a republic (the likes of which had never been seen), which is still going strong well over 200 years later. To accomplish this task, compromises had to be made. The Great Compromise designed the bicameral congress the U.S. has today.
5. The Ratification of the Constitution and the New U.S. Government
The U.S. Constitution may be one of the most important documents in history, but it wasn't a sure thing. A lot of debate took place. There were many people passionate about ratification, and many people passionate about ensuring it didn't get ratified. The divide over the Constitution shows us the root of political parties in the U.S.
6. The US Constitution: Preamble, Articles and Amendments
The U.S. Constitution is one of the most important documents in history. It establishes the government of the United States, and its first ten amendments, the Bill of Rights, assures every U.S. citizen the rights we have all come to hold dear.
7. The Bill of Rights: The Constitution's First 10 Amendments
The Bill of Rights was pivotal in getting the U.S. Constitution ratified. More importantly, the Bill of Rights guarantees the rights of every citizen of the United States in a way that is nearly unequaled.
8. George Washington and the New United States Government
George Washington was the United States' first president. He knew everything he did would set the stage for future presidents of the country. A heavy weight was on his shoulders, and much of what he established in his two terms set the precedent for presidents today.
9. Hamilton and the Federalists vs. Jefferson and the Republicans
Although President Washington warned against the nation falling into political factions, the different views of the Constitution held by Alexander Hamilton and the Federalists and Thomas Jefferson and the Democratic-Republicans set the path for the two-party system that the U.S. has today.
10. The French Revolution, Jay Treaty and Treaty of San Lorenzo
In the U.S., early foreign affairs were of incredible importance. For the young nation to survive, they had to exist in a world with tense relations. Should the new nation get involved in foreign wars? How do they negotiate with foreign powers? This lesson looks at the early foreign relations of the United States.
11. The Whiskey Rebellion and Battle of Fallen Timbers
In the early days of the U.S., President Washington and the new government were tested by foreign and domestic issues. How these issues were dealt with would establish the young nation's position. Domestically, the Whiskey Rebellion and the Battle of Fallen Timbers demonstrated how rebellion and territorial issues would be decided.
12. George Washington: Presidency & Facts
In this lesson, we will discuss how George Washington, the first president of the United States, helped shape the office of president. Learn more about how Washington set the stage for future presidents and test your knowledge with a quiz.
13. George Washington's Farewell Address
This lesson describes George Washington's farewell address, in which he gives thought-provoking and practical advice for preserving the union of a young United States of America.
14. President John Adams: From Alien and Sedition Acts to XYZ Affair
John Adams was an important founder of the United States. In many ways, he was the voice of the Revolution. As president, he had some proud shining moments and one major blight on his legacy.
15. Abigail Adams: Biography, Facts & Accomplishments
Abigail Adams was the wife of President John Adams and the mother of John Quincy Adams. She proved to be much more than a figure head first lady, as she had great influence with President Adams.
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Other chapters within the AEPA History (NT302): Practice & Study Guide course
- Historical Concepts & Research
- Understanding Historical Resources
- Events & Contributions of Early Civilizations
- Ancient Near East Civilizations
- The Bronze Age in the Near East
- Ancient Africa & the Americas
- Dynasties & Confucianism in Ancient China
- Culture & Beliefs of Ancient India
- Contributions & History of Ancient Greece
- Hellenism & Athens
- The Roman Republic Rises
- History of the Fall of Rome
- History of Early Christianity
- The Byzantine Empire & Culture
- The Origins of Islam
- Contributions of Medieval European Politics
- The Crusades & Church Reform in Medieval Europe
- The Hundred Years' War
- Asia in the Middle & Late Middle Ages
- Africa & the Americas in the Middle & Late Middle Ages
- History of the Renaissance
- The Protestant Reformation in Europe & Worldwide
- The Age of European Exploration & Discovery
- History of the Elizabethan Era
- Colonialism in Europe, Africa & the New World
- Major Figures & Events of the Scientific Revolution
- The Enlightenment
- Asia & Africa in the 15th-18th Centuries
- Political & Technological World Developments (1750-1914)
- European & Japanese Imperialism
- Battles & Consequences of World War I
- Causes & Events of World War II
- Civilizations of the Americas Before & After Colonization
- Colonial Settlements & Battles in North America (1497-1732)
- Events Leading to the American Revolution (1700-1774)
- Events & Leaders of the American Revolution
- The Virginia Dynasty
- Jacksonian Democracy
- Everyday Life in Antebellum America
- Manifest Destiny & American Expansion
- Sectional Crisis & the Start of the Civil War (1850-1861)
- Battles & Effects of the American Civil War (1861-1865)
- American Reconstruction & the Gilded Age (1865-1877)
- American Industrialization & Urbanization (1870-1900)
- Figures & Events of the Progressive Era (1900-1917)
- American Imperialism & World War I
- American Life & Culture During the Roaring 20s (1920-1929)
- The Great Depression in the U.S. (1929-1940)
- American Involvement in World War ll (1941-1945)
- World Events & Politics After World War II (1946-1959)
- Events & Presidents During the Cold War (1950-1973)
- American Civil Disobedience, Protests & Activism (1954-1973)
- America in the 1970s
- America in the 1980s
- Politics & Major Figures of Contemporary America (1992-2013)
- AEPA History Flashcards