Mr. B's House of History

Hinc Lucem et Pocula Sacra

Advanced Placement US History



10.06.15 - The Progressive Era

Disclaimer:  Wow, this unit is epic!   Truly one of the more exciting moments in our history to be studying.  I hope you enjoy learning about this as I do teaching it.  

Please read 722-732; you can keep your answer to 2, 3, and 4 brief or bulleted.  

1. What role did women like Lillian Wald play in the Settlement House movement? Why were middle-class educated women like Jane Addams and Florence Kelley attracted to the progressive crusade?

2.  What were the major themes that unified the Progressives?

3.  What was the progressives' criticism of the political machines?

4.  Who was Robert La Follette?  Why did his state, Wisconsin, become known as "The Laboratory of Democracy?"   What was the basic purpose of the initiative, referendum, direct primary, and recall?  

5.  How did Southern Progressives exclude African-Americans?

6.  What were muckrackers?  Identify the major muckrackers (FYI: there are MANY) and their writings.  How did they prepare the way for progressivism? In particular, how did Jacob Riis and Ida Tarbell's muckraking journalism mobilize public opinion?

7.  How did Oliver Wendell Holmes. Jr. and Louis Brandeis (take a quick look, very important to understand the concept of the Brandeis Brief on 732) challenge the conservative view of constitutional law that had dominated courts during the Gilded Age



10.05.15 - Taft and Wilson

1.  How was President Taft's Dollar Diplomacy different than Roosevelt's Big Stick diplomacy? What do historians mean when they say America became a Caribbean Constabulary? (make sure to look at the map on 707)

2.  Who was Pancho Villa? Why did Woodrow Wilson's military intervention in Mexico leave a bitter legacy of suspicion and distrust?  Does his policy deserve the title of “Moral Dimplomacy?”

3.  Look at this webpage on the controversial marine Smedley Butler. Read through the entire page. Pay close attention to his famous quote from War is a Racket under the Military Retirement and Speaking Career section. After looking at Butler's military exploits why do you think America's leading imperial soldier became a pacifist and anti-imperialist?

Due Tuesday. 



10.01.15 - America's Influence Expands!

Read up to Dollar Diplomacy

1.  Explain why there was disagreement over whether or not the US should control the Philippines.  You would you have sided with?

2..  Are Cubans today justified in having a deep mistrust in the United States?  What historical evidence supports this?

3.  Describe John Hay's Open Door Policy.  How did the US benefit from it?

4. Read this link on TR and the Panama Canal. Evaluate historian Walter LaFeber's analysis of the event. If you were one of Roosevelt’s advisors would you support Roosevelt's actions?    

5.  Was the Roosevelt Corollary an extension or distortion of the Monroe Doctrine?


09.29.15 - American Imperialism

Readings for this unit will be, for the most part, through your packet supplied in class.

Read your packet UP TO "The United States Becomes a World Power."

1. What were some of the major arguments in favor of imperialism?  Which arguments did you find to be justified/unjustified?

2.  What is meant by "yellow journalism?  How did journalists like Hearst and Pulitzer use it influence America's desire to go to war with Spain?  Explain the events that led to America going to war with Spain.

3.  Define jingoism.  Is jingoism more of a help or a hurt to a nation with that belief?

4.   Why was the Spanish American War called "a splendid little war?"  To what extent did the United States benefit from going to war with Spain?

Due Wednesday


09.28.15 - The Populist Movement

Read the Grange  689-691

1.  What economic conditions led to the rise of the Grange Movement? What type of legislation did the farmers demand?

Skip to Women Build Alliances bottom and the crisis of the 1890s, 692-695

2.  What role did women play in the farmer-labor movement? Focus on Mary E. Lease and Francis Willard.

3.  What was the platform of the new "People's Party?" How did Ceasar's Column represent class tension during this era?

4.  How did the federal government respond to Coxey's March on Washington?

skip to The Election of 1896, bottom of 698-700  

5.  What was the key issue in the 1896 presidential race? b) Why is William Jennings Bryan's,Cross of Gold Speech one of the most famous in American history? c)Why did Republicans triumph? d)Find a cartoon relating to the election of 1896 and print it out for class.

6.  Read "Populism and Agrarian Discontent." The author argues that even though the Populists died out as a political party they had a tremendous influence on the political system. Assess the validity of this statement.  YOU WILL HAVE TO REGISTER WITH GILDER LEHRMAN TO ACCESS THIS ARTICLE!





09.24.15 - Party Politics and the Machine

Recap:  You took a test.....that was all.

Homework:  Read 686 to the top of 689

1.  After the Civil War how did the national government change? Have specific examples ready to discuss.

2.  What was the significance of the Interstate Commerce Commission? 

3.  Why was the tariff the one major political issue of the late 19th century?
4.  What were some of the methods campaigners used to attract voters? 

5.  Why is Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall synonymous with the spoils system and machine politics? Read and this link for answers -Boss Tweed 
6.  How did Garfield's assassination lead to the Pendelton Civil Service Reform Act?


09.21.15 - Urbanization and Urban Culture

Recap:  Today we looked at the role of the Supreme Court during the Gilded Age

Homework:  Finish chapter 19.  You don't have to take notes.  Just complete the organizational packet found HERE.

There will be a short multiple choice test on chapter 19 this Thursday.  


09.17.15 - Major Conflicts in the Labor Movement

Recap:  Today we began a group assignment illustrating the major strikes in American labor history.  The poster created will be unveiled tomorrow.

Homework:  Pay attention to the readings as I making you skip around a bit. 

Read 667-668

1. Explain Thornstein Veblen's term "conspicuous consumption" and provide two examples.

Skip ahead to 684-685

2. Why is Bellamy's Looking Backward (1888) called a utopian tale? Why do you think Looking Backward was the century's best-selling novel after Uncle Tom's Cabin?

 Skip ahead to 691 (Workers Search for Power)

3. How did the Great Uprising of 1877 prompt the creation of the National Guard and armories? How would you have advised President Hayes during the crisis?

 Skip ahead to 696 to the bottom of 698 Strikes: Couer D' Alene, Homestead, and Pullman

4. Were Andrew Carnegie and Henry Clay Frick criminal in their treatment of the Homstead steel workers?

5. How did the Pullman Strike push Eugene Debs towards socialism? 

6. Explain the historical context in which social gospel works such as If Christ Came to Chicago (1894) were published

Skip Ahead to 740-top of 742

7. How did company towns often leave workers feeling powerless? What happened in Ludlow, Colorado on September 13, 1913? To what degree is John D. Rockefeller Jr. responsible?



09.16.15 - The Rise of the Labor Movement in the Age of Big Business

Read pages 656-663

1.  Compare and contrast the Knights of Labor and the American Federation of Labor. If you were a white male laborer which union would you have joined?

2.  How did the bombing at Haymarket Massacre hurt organized labor's cause?

3.  Required---"The Chinese Exclusion Act: A Black Legacy." Pay close attention to the cartoon "A Statute for Our Harbor." What did you learn from this website? Is the fear of illegal Mexican immigration today similar to the 19th century anxiety over Chinese immigrants? 

4.  How did the development of southern industry affect the lives of African Americans living in the South? Give three examples.

5.  Read this op-ed "Gilded Once More." What do you think of his argument? Also look at this chart. Is this a dangerous trend?



09.15.15 - The Rise of Big Business 

Finish the documents in the packet given to you in class.



09.08.15 - The Incorporation of America

Read pages 648-655 and Wealth

1.  After reading the opening story, "Packingtown, Chicago" discuss how industry, ethnicity and big business shaped Post-Civil War Chicago. 

2.  What were some of the major revolutions in technology during this second industrial revolution?  

3.  Explain how the United Fruit Company used vertical integration to create an "empire of bananas"? How did John D. Rockefeller use horizontal integration dominate the oil industry? 
4.  Explain how Social Darwinism and the stories of Horatio Alger were used to justify the great economic inequalities of the Gilded Age. 

5.  Compare and contrast Jay Gould and Andrew Carnegie. Who was the more controversial captain of industry and why? 

MUST read NYT piece---"Harder to Rise from the Lower Rungs." Why do you think this article caused so much controversy? Be ready to discuss specific points from the piece.


NOTE:  I am not making copies of the syllabus this year.  It's large, so we're going paperless.  You can access it on your iPad at any point by clicking HERE.