Ch 7: U.S. History (Pre-Columbian Period to 1791)

About This Chapter

It's easy to prepare for an upcoming exam with this engaging and professionally written chapter on U.S. history from the pre-Columbian period to 1791. Work at your own pace as you review these short video lessons on any tablet, computer or smartphone at your leisure.

U.S. History (Pre-Columbian Period to 1791) - Chapter Summary

In this chapter, you'll find a series of video lessons covering U.S. history from the pre-Columbian period to 1791. These short videos address the effects of European colonization, the colonies and explorers associated with New Spain and North American Indians before Europeans. Other subjects discussed here include the Puritans and the founding of the New England colonies and the settlement and growth of the southern colonies. Use this chapter to ensure you're able to:

  • Identify the middle colonies
  • Provide an overview of black history in Colonial America
  • Discuss the events and turning points that caused the American Revolution
  • Give the history and a summary of the effects of the American Revolution
  • Detail the Northwest Ordinance and the Articles of Confederation
  • Outline Shays Rebellion and the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation
  • Describe the Great Compromise and the Constitutional Convention
  • Explain the ratification of the Constitution and the new U.S. government

Whether you need a quick review or a more in-depth study of this material, this chapter will help you prepare for exam day. Our short videos are generally less than 10 minutes in length and feature video tabs for quick navigation. Before, during or after you work through the video lessons, the quizzes provided here offer a handy way to test your exam preparedness.

13 Lessons in Chapter 7: U.S. History (Pre-Columbian Period to 1791)
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Effects of European Colonization: Christopher Columbus and Native Americans

1. Effects of European Colonization: Christopher Columbus and Native Americans

The earliest explorers in the Western Hemisphere left a legacy that would shape the development of the Americas permanently. No matter what they came looking for, Europeans left behind death, horses, and metal.

New Spain: Spanish Explorers and Spanish Colonies

2. New Spain: Spanish Explorers and Spanish Colonies

Who are the most well-known explorers and conquistadors of the New World? In this lesson, we'll look at some of the most infamous explorers. We'll discover the difference between explorers and conquistadors, and then learn about the encomienda system.

Pre-Columbian Civilization: North American Indians Before Europeans

3. Pre-Columbian Civilization: North American Indians Before Europeans

Watch this video for an overview of the cultural groups of Native Americans as they lived at the time of first contact with Europeans. Some of these groupings, like the tribes of the plains, changed so much due to the addition of European influences, such as horses, that there is only conjecture as to how exactly they lived before European contact.

The Puritans and the Founding of the New England Colonies

4. The Puritans and the Founding of the New England Colonies

Learn about the people and motives that led to the founding of Massachusetts Bay Colony, as well as the growth and internal dissent that led to the establishment of Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

The Southern Colonies: Settlement and Growth

5. The Southern Colonies: Settlement and Growth

What led to the use of slavery and the creation of different colonies? In this lesson, learn about the unique purposes and patterns of settlement, growth and society in the southern colonies (Virginia, Maryland, the Carolinas, and Georgia).

The Middle Colonies: New York, Delaware, New Jersey & Pennsylvania

6. The Middle Colonies: New York, Delaware, New Jersey & Pennsylvania

Learn about the unique identity and diversity of the middle colonies that led America to be called a melting pot. English control of the middle colonies began with the takeover of New Netherland, from which all of the other middle colonies can trace their beginnings.

Rise of Slave Trade: Black History in Colonial America

7. Rise of Slave Trade: Black History in Colonial America

In this lesson, you'll learn a little about the slave trade, the growth and characteristics of slavery in the colonial period - including laws regulating the institution and the population of free blacks in the English colonies.

Causes of the American Revolution: Events & Turning Points

8. Causes of the American Revolution: Events & Turning Points

In this lesson, we explore the causes and the initial battles of the American Revolution, from the end of the French and Indian War up until the Declaration of Independence in July, 1776.

Effects of the American Revolution: Summary & History

9. Effects of the American Revolution: Summary & History

In this lesson we explore the effects of the American Revolution, which were felt not just in Great Britain and North America, but across the Western world.

The Articles of Confederation and the Northwest Ordinance

10. 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.

Weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation and Shays Rebellion

11. 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.

The Constitutional Convention: The Great Compromise

12. 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.

The Ratification of the Constitution and the New U.S. Government

13. 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.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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