Short Writing Assignment 1

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Choose a topic from the “suggestions” or construct your own topic from the 1860s – 1930s.  Certain “suggestions” are already arranged into a topical question that can be used as the basis for the presentation.  Focus on a topic that allows you to make a critique.

Use at least one reference and cite it multiple times inside the paragraphs.  At the bottom of the presentation, list the full reference(s) in a Works Cited page.

Present a topic in a 3 paragraph essay, or a Thinking Like a Historian Map presentation, or a S.E.E.-I. presentation, or a Double-Arch presentation.  Open the link for instructions on how to construct these writings or  presentations.  You MUST choose one of these three presentation formats to earn credit.

Write 10 – 20 sentences.

The overall objective is to construct an effective presentation with well supported evidence.

Use as few words as possible in your sentences.

If students choose, there can be made lists of sentences instead of using complete paragraphs.

Make sure the wording makes sense and illustrates your own ideas.

Don’t hesitate to use images as well.

Use statistical evidence to support the information.

Avoid grammatical errors.

Suggested Topics:

1. Within 10 years (1870 – 1880), 25% of the total number of African American Senators in U.S. history were elected.  The remaining 75% of the total number of African American Senators in U.S. history were elected between 1966 and 2016.  Between 1881 and 1966, almost 100 years, no African Americans were elected to the U.S. Senate.  Why was this so?

2.  Consider the adoption of the 15th amendment and how different persons responded to this reforming effort.  Consider what the 15th amendment does not include and what additional voting rights were still demanded by citizens.  Such demands were eventually satisfied from subsequent amendments and laws adopted in the 20th century.

3.  Consider how Abraham Lincoln’s assassination affected the outcome of Reconstruction.  Consider the power struggle that ensued and the efforts of the “Redeemers” to change to course of Reconstruction.

4. Outline the ripple effect from the Compromise of 1877.  Why do many African American history textbooks refer to this compromise as the “Great Betrayal”?

5. For what reasons were so many ex-Confederates worth $20,000 or more pardoned by U.S. presidents during the Reconstruction era (1863 – 1877)?

6. What was the legacy of the Reconstruction amendments?  How limited were these amendments when considering civil rights?

7. What three new groups gravitated to U.S. cities during the Gilded Age?  What impact did these migrations have on city populations and/or culture?

8. What factors changed for women who lived in U.S. cities during the Gilded Age?  What was the “New Woman” and how did this compare to the previous generation of women?

9. What new U.S. Constitutional amendments were added shortly after the Gilded Age?  How did these amendments reflect the newer U.S. culture in the early 20th century?

10.  Which specific U.S. Constitutional amendment added between 1865 and 1920 has had the greatest impact on U.S. culture and/or civil rights?  Construct an argument to defend your position.

11. Which specific U.S. constitutional amendment added between 1865 and 1920 do  you think was the most counter-productive amendment?  Construct an argument to defend your position.

12.  What were some motivations for state governments and eventually the United States government to introduce mandatory school for children during the early 1900s?

13.  What political problems were present during the Gilded Age?  What problems existed regarding voting?

14. Why was the voter turnout higher during the Gilded Age than during the 20th and 21st centuries?

15. What problems persisted in college football games that raised concern among college administrators during the late 1800s and early 1900s?  How were these problems solved during the early 1900s?

16. Many southern Democrats criticized U.S. colonization efforts during the late 1800s and early 1900s.  Other U.S. Americans argued against U.S. annexation of foreign territories during the late 1800s and early 1900s.  Why?

17. Which are the most important factors that influenced the outbreak of World War I in 1914?

18. Which are the most important factors that influenced the United States to enter World War I in 1917?

19. How and why did Hawaii become a U.S. territory in the 1890s?

20. Why did the Lost generation reject many of the ideas popular among the Victorian generation?

21. What similar forms of disinformation and/or economic motivation were influential in starting U.S. wars in Iraq (2003 – 2011) and the Philippines (1899 -1902)?

22. What similarities existed between “yellow journalism” during the late 1800s/early 1900s and modern media sources during the 2000s?

23. What were some of the reasons why the U.S. government occupied Hawaii and the Philippines in the late 1890s and Iraq during the early 2000s?

24. Why in both the early 1900s and in the early 2000s were there dramatically more female teachers than male teachers in early childhood and elementary schools?  Incorporate this data from a 2017 from (Links to an external site.): “According to data from the U.S. Department of Labor, 77.9% of elementary and middle school teachers in 2017 were women. For preschool and kindergarten teachers, that figure was 97.2%.”

25. Which U.S. Presidents have been impeached in U.S. history and why? What resulted in the next Presidential elections after these impeachments took place?

26. How did Presidential pardons affect the outcome of the Reconstruction era (1863 – 1877) and into the later 19th century?

27. What was the Credit Mobilier scandal from the 1870s and what were some of the results from the incident?

28. What happened in the 1876 Presidential election that prompted disputes with the votes in certain states?

29. What was the most progressive change or changes associated with American women during the 1920s?

30. Describe the status of the U.S. economy during the 1920s from the start of the decade until the end of the decade.

31. Explain three factors from the 1920s that caused the Great Depression of the 1930s?  What is the most important statistic that illustrates the Great Depression and why?

32. How did new music and new art, rooted from the early 1900s, impact and then reflect young adult culture during the 1920s?

33. Construct a “recipe” from the 1920s that produced the Great Depression during the 1930s.

34. What are the opposing arguments about the current presence of Confederate monuments? What eras were most of these Confederate monuments and dedications established, and why?

35. What were the 4 Constitutional amendments added between 1913 – 1920 and which was the most impacting throughout the 20th and 21st centuries?

36. What new forms of art in painting were introduced during the Progressive era (late 1890s – 1920)?

37. What were the motivations behind the adoption of the 18th amendment (1919)?

38. Why did more people in photographs smile after the early 1900s? What changed with photograph technology from the previous eras?

39. What happened on January 6th, 2021 in Washington D.C.? What factors brought on what happened?

40. Why was President Bill Clinton impeached?

41. Why was President Donald Trump impeached twice?

SOC 101 Short Writing Assignment 1 Each query below requires a…