History Important Terms Essay

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History Important Terms

Bacon’s Rebellion-1676 – Nathaniel Bacon and other western Virginia settlers were angry at Virginia Governor Berkley for trying to appease the Doeg Indians after the Doegs attacked the western settlements. The frontiersmen formed an army, with Bacon as its leader, which defeated the Indians and then marched on Jamestown and burned the city. The rebellion ended suddenly when Bacon died of an illness.

John Winthrop-He became the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay colony, and served in that capacity from 1630 through 1649. A Puritan with strong religious beliefs. He opposed total democracy, believing the colony was best governed by a small group of skillful leaders. He helped organize the New England Confederation in 1643 and served as its first president. He believed in the creation of a City on a Hill and that they would be an example to the world.

Separatists- Non-separatists (which included the Puritans) believed that the Church of England could be purified through reforms. Separatists (which included the Pilgrims) believed that the Church of England could not be reformed and that it was corrupt so started their own congregations.

Roger Williams-Rhode Island. He left the Massachusetts colony and purchased the land from a neighboring Indian tribe to found the colony of Rhode Island. Rhode Island was the only colony at that time to offer complete religious freedom. He was an antinomian. He was exiled from Massachusetts because of his beliefs. He believed you couldn’t take land from Native Americans because they could be saved, Anglican Church is too corrupt, separation of church and state and religious toleration, you don’t have to listen to the bible or minister if you are already predetermined. Founder of Rhode Island.

Anne Hutchinson-She preached the idea that God communicated directly to individuals instead of through the church elders. She was forced to leave Massachusetts in 1637. Her followers (the Antinomians) founded the colony of New Hampshire in 1639. She allied with merchants. Said the bible was wrong. “Visible saints”- – people who were godly Christians and who went to heaven when they died. Puritans believed that they were the saints of the world.

Half-Way Covenant- The Half-way Covenant applied to those members of the Puritan colonies who were the children of church members, but who hadn’t achieved grace themselves. The covenant allowed them to participate in some church affairs.

Dominion of New England- 1686 – The British government combined the colonies of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Connecticut into a single province headed by a royal governor (Andros). The Dominion ended in 1692, when the colonists revolted and drove out Governor Andros. An example that Britain was beginning to lose control of New England.

Penn’s “Holy Experiment’- William Penn’s term for the government of Pennsylvania, which was supposed to serve everyone and provide freedom for all. He was a Quaker. He was most likely gay so he wasn’t accepted by puritans but in Pennsylvania he could be free and safe because they believed that they are the same as everyone else.

Nathaniel Bacon- Virginian planter who organized a militia of 500, attacked and killed Indians because some tribes caused planters problems. Then he marched the militia into Jamestown and burned it.

House of Burgesses-1619 – The Virginia House of Burgesses formed the first legislative body in colonial America. Later other colonies would adopt houses of burgesses. Indentured servants- People who could not afford passage to the colonies could become indentured servants. Another person would pay their passage, and in exchange, the indentured servant would serve that person for a set length of time (usually seven years) and then would be free.

Headright- Headrights were parcels of land consisting of about 50 acres which were given to colonists who brought indentured servants into America. They were used by the Virginia Company to attract more colonists

“middle passage” – passage from the African west coast to the West Indies

Enlightenment-A philosophical movement which started in Europe in the 1700’s and spread to the colonies. It emphasized reason and the scientific method. Writers of the enlightenment tended to focus on government, ethics, and science, rather than on imagination, emotions, or religion. Many members of the Enlightenment rejected traditional religious beliefs in favor of Deism, which holds that the world is run by natural laws without the direct intervention of God. It is believed that it influenced the American Revolution.

Great Awakening- Puritanism had declined by the 1730s, and people were upset about the decline in religious piety. The Great Awakening was a sudden outbreak of religious fervor that swept through the colonies. One of the first events to unify the colonies. It believed in individualism and New Birth. Believed to influence American Revolution.

George Whitefield- George Whitefield, an Anglican minister, led numerous revivals and preached a theology “scaled down to the comprehension of twelve-year-olds.” While not denying the doctrine of predestination, he preached a God responsive to good intentions. He believed in the concept of New Birth.

Jonathan Edwards- Jonathan Edwards was the most famous native-born revivalist. In 1727 he “inherited” his grandfather’s pulpit in Northampton, Massachusetts, and dramatized hell’s fire and brimstone from the pulpit. Eventually in 1749 his parishioners voted to dismiss him. By the 1750s, the Great Awakening, the first truly national event in American history, had run its course. Although it had caused divisions, it also fostered religious toleration. His most famous work is “Sinners”. He believed one could become morally perfect.

Mercantilism-Navigation Acts- the most important legislature that Britain passed on colonies. Says that all goods shipped on vessels built in UK, Raw material to UK only in UK ships, no manufacturing in colonies, 75% UK crews, all goods to other countries stop in UK for unloading.

Congregationalism- Puritan system. Says that church is center of town and the meeting house. Congregation elects minister.

Pilgrims – Mayflower Compact- 1620 – The first agreement for self-government in America. It was signed by the 41 men on the Mayflower and set up a government for the Plymouth colony. It said that all people must adhere to majority rule, allegiance to king and church is the center of their town.

Triangle Trade- The backbone of New England’s economy during the colonial period. Ships from New England sailed first to Africa, exchanging New England rum for slaves. The slaves were shipped from Africa to the Caribbean (this was known as the Middle Passage, when many slaves died on the ships). In the Caribbean, the slaves were traded for sugar and molasses. Then the ships returned to New England, where the molasses were used to make rum.

Great Migration- Many Puritans emigrated from England to America in the 1630s and 1640s. During this time, the population of the Massachusetts Bay colony grew to ten times its earlier population.

King Philip’s War- 1675 – A series of battles in New Hampshire between the colonists and the Wompanowogs, led by a chief known as King Philip. The war was started when the Massachusetts government tried to assert court jurisdiction over the local Indians. The colonists won with the help of the Mohawks, and this victory opened up additional Indian lands for expansion.

Covenant of Grace- Puritan teachings emphasized the biblical covenants: God’s covenants with Adam and with Noah, the covenant of grace between God and man through Christ.

John Smith-Helped found and govern Jamestown. His leadership and strict discipline helped the Virginia colony get through the difficult first winter.

Virginia Company-Virginia was formed by the Virginia Company as a profit-earning venture. Starvation was the major problem; about 90% of the colonists died the first year, many of the survivors left, and the company had trouble attracting new colonists. They offered private land ownership in the colony to attract settlers, but the Virginia Company eventually went bankrupt and the colony went to the crown. Virginia did not become a successful colony until the colonists started raising and exporting tobacco. William Berkeley- the royal governor, Sir William Berkeley of Virginia. He was forced by Bacon to legitimize his power in order to take control of Jamestown and fight against Indians.

“seasoning time”- period of time when new colonists became accustomed to the weather and hygiene conditions in the colony

Toleration Act of 1649- 1649 – Ordered by Lord Baltimore after a Protestant was made governor of Maryland at the demand of the colony’s large Protestant population. The act guaranteed religious freedom to all Christians. Maryland was unique in that it became a refuge for Catholic immigrants, and although Catholics were a minority in Maryland their rights were protected

Jacob Leisler- In New York in 1689, Jacob Leisler seized control of the government for two years before being sent to the gallows. But for two decades struggles continued between those who shared Leisler’s dislike of English rule and those who had opposed his takeover. He took control of New York. He was arrested for denying English troops to enter key forts. He arrested many new Yorkers for questioning his authority.

John Peter Zenger- Another political problem occurred when Governor William Cosby made a claim for back salary and was opposed by forces led by Lewis Morris. Morrisites established a weekly journal which was eventually closed down and which led to the trial for seditious libel of its editor, John Peter Zenger.

Deism- The religion of the Enlightenment (1700s). Followers believed that God existed and had created the world, but that afterwards He left it to run by its own natural laws. Denied that God communicated to man or in any way influenced his life.

Albany Plan of Union- During the French and Indian War, Franklin wrote this proposal for a unified colonial government, which would operate under the authority of the British government. Gives the arousal of William Pitt. The first time the colonies unite.

Great War for Empire- increased tensions between France and Britain. France puts up forts around their land. Britain is defeated in Ohio because they have really bad Generals and Native Americans are allied with France, But Irukoy Indians ally with Britain. It is the cause of the first meeting between all 13 colonies. William Pitt was appointed general and helped defeat the French.

Regulator Movement- was the attempt to regulate taxes in North Carolina where citizens took up arms against corrupt colonial officials. While unsuccessful, some historians consider it a catalyst to the American Revolutionary War.

Stono Rebellion in NY- the rebellion against slavery in New York. One of the earliest known organized rebellions in the present United States, it was led by native Africans who were Catholic and the rebellion was suppressed.

Treaty of Paris (1763)- 1763 the Treaty of Paris ended hostilities and gave England dominance in North America. France is out of New World.

North Carolina Regulators- Western frontiersmen who in 1768 rebelled in protest against the high taxes imposed by the Eastern colonial government of North Carolina, and whose organization was crushed by military force by Governor Tryon in 1771. In South Carolina, groups of vigilantes who organized to fight outlaw bands along the Western frontier in 1767-1769, and who disbanded when regular courts were established in those areas.

Sugar Act (1764)- The passage of the Sugar Act (1764), which placed tariffs on sugar, coffee, wines, and other imported products, was denounced by the colonists as taxation without representation. Also in 1764, the government in London restricted the printing, although not the use of, paper money in the colonies.

“Salutary neglect”- colonists resorted to smuggling and bribery to bypass Parliamentary regulations. Mercantilistic laws merely steered American economy toward England, and the colonies enjoyed almost continuous prosperity from 1650 until the Revolution.

Proclamation of 1763- Proclamation of 1763. No settlers were to cross the Appalachian divide, only licensed traders could do business in that area, and the purchase of Indian land was outlawed. The purpose of the proclamation was to organize Great Britain’s new North American empire and to stabilize relations with Native North Americans through regulation of trade, settlement, and land purchases on the western frontier.

Tea Act 1773- The final crisis in the ongoing conflict over imperial control surfaced in 1773 when Parliament, in attempting to save the corrupt and inefficient British East India Company from bankruptcy, gave the company a monopoly on colonial tea trade. Although this action reduced the price of tea (middlemen were eliminated), Americans regarded it as a sly attempt to trap them into paying the tea tax. In Boston the situation deteriorated as Samuel Adams and other propagandists inflamed the public to a point that on December 16, 1773, the Boston Tea Party occurred.

Coercive Acts 1774- All of these names refer to the same acts, passed in 1774 in response to the Boston Tea Party, and which included the Boston Port Act, which shut down Boston Harbor; the Massachusetts Government Act, which disbanded the Boston Assembly (but it soon reinstated itself); the Quartering Act, which required the colony to provide provisions for British soldiers; and the Administration of Justice Act, which removed the power of colonial courts to arrest royal officers.

Albany Plan-Stamp Act Congress 1765- taxed many kinds of printed matter, including newspapers, legal documents, and licenses. Was direct taxing by eng. An intercolonial Stamp Act Congress passed resolutions of protest, and relations were further strained as colonists burned the stamps, boycotted British goods, and the Sons of Liberty resorted to some violence. Parliament responded by repealing the Stamp Act (1766).

Writs of Assistance- Search warrants issued by the British government. They allowed officials to search houses and ships for smuggled goods, and to enlist colonials to help them search. The writs could be used anywhere, anytime, as often as desired. The officials did not need to prove that there was reasonable cause to believe that the person subject to the search had committed a crime or might have possession of contraband before getting a writ or searching a house. The writs were protested by the colonies.

Declaratory Act 1766- On the same day Parliament repealed the Stamp Act, it passed a Declaratory Act establishing its right to enact any colonial legislation it deemed proper. The Declaratory Act highlighted the degree to which British and Americans had drifted apart on the concepts of representation, constitution, and sovereignty.

Townshend Acts 1767- Facing the possibility of a deficit budget, Parliament passed the Townshend Acts (1767) which placed new taxes on glass, lead, paints, paper, and tea. Colonists immediately began boycotting British imports and influential Americans began questioning the basis of the British colonial system. The spectrum of debate ranged from the moderate views of John Dickinson to the radical opinions of Samuel Adams.

Boston Massacre 1770- On March 5, 1770, idlers tossed snowballs at Redcoats guarding the Boston Custom House, and panicking soldiers fired their muskets into the crowd, killing five. Although radicals like Samuel Adams played up the incident, cooler heads prevailed and a post-massacre truce settled over British America.

Circular Letter- a letter sent by Sam Adams to colonies that says taxing is unconstitutional.

Virtual – Actual Representation- Virtual representation means that a representative is not elected by his constituents, but he resembles them in his political beliefs and goals. Actual representation mean that a representative is elected by his constituents. The colonies only had virtual representation in the British government.

1st-2nd Continental Congress- The First Continental Congress met to discuss their concerns over Parliament’s dissolutions of the New York (for refusing to pay to quarter troops), Massachusetts (for the Boston Tea Party), and Virginia Assemblies. The First Continental Congress rejected the plan for a unified colonial government, stated grievances against the crown called the Declaration of Rights, resolved to prepare militias, and created the Continental Association to enforce a new non-importation agreement through Committees of Vigilence. In response, in February, 1775, Parliament declared the colonies to be in rebellion. It met in 1776 and drafted and signed the Declaration of Independence, which justified the Revolutionary War and declared that the colonies should be independent of Britain.

Sam Adams- A Massachusetts politician who was a radical fighter for colonial independence. Helped organize the Sons of Liberty and the Non-Importation Commission, which protested the Townshend Acts, and is believed to have lead the Boston Tea Party. He served in the Continental Congress throughout the Revolution, and served as Governor of Massachusetts from 1794-1797.

John Dickenson- Drafted a declaration of colonial rights and grievances, and also wrote the series of “Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania” in 1767 to protest the Townshend Acts. Although an outspoken critic of British policies towards the colonies, Dickinson opposed the Revolution, and, as a delegate to the Continental Congress in 1776, refused to sign the Declaration of Independence.

Sons of Liberty- A radical political organization for colonial independence which formed in 1765 after the passage of the Stamp Act. They incited riots and burned the customs houses where the stamped British paper was kept. After the repeal of the Stamp Act, many of the local chapters formed the Committees of Correspondence which continued to promote opposition to British policies towards the colonies. The Sons leaders included Samuel Adams and Paul Revere.

Unit II Terms

Olive Branch Petition- a petition sent by John Dickinson during the Second Continental Congress to George III of Britain to try and reconcile their feuds. It fails to have any effect because by the time the petition arrives in Britain George III knows about Bunker’s Hill and declares Massachusetts in open rebellion so he cuts off all imports to colonies, which will cause major economic problems.

Common Sense- a testament written by Tomas Paine to challenge the authority of the British government and the royal monarchy. He writes it to try and create a greater awareness that colonist need independence. It is simple and easy to read. Called for colonists to realize their mistreatment and push for independence from England. Attacked King George III and the monarchy itself. As a result, Continental Congress unleashed privateers against British commerce, open American ports, established state governments.

Loyalists- colonists that fight for the British during the Revolution. They included Canadian elites in fear of Americans spreading into their land, some native Americans, and were influenced by the Whigs. They wanted to remain loyal to the British king.

Yorktown (1781)- The Battle of Yorktown. It is the decisive battle that ends the Revolutionary War. It forced the British to surrender and negotiate some sort of agreement between America. It leads to the Treaty of Paris 1783 which acknowledged the colonies as independent.

Thomas Paine- author of Common Sense. He wanted to create more awareness to colonists about what Britain was doing. He wanted to inspire colonists to do something about their independence.

Declaration of Independence- the statement adopted on July 4th that declared that the colonies were no longer part of Britain. Sharply separated Loyalists from Patriots and helped to start the American Revolution by allowing England to hear of the colonists disagreements with British authority.

Franco-American Alliance-Saratoga (1778)- an alliance formed between France and the United States. France agrees to help America militarily and economically to defeat and weaken Britain.

Articles of Confederation (1781)- The first form of federal government. It had limited national power. It requires a unanimous vote from all colonies to ratify a law, donations instead of taxes, inadequate central government. Gave states independence and more power over national government (able to form treaties, control foreign policy, coin money). Its successes were the Land ordinance of 1785 and the Northwest Ordinance 1787.

Peace of Paris (1783)- Treaty between America and Britain. It recognizes America’s independence. It required all British troops to be evacuated as long as loyalists were paid; all land east of Mississippi went to America, fishing rights of grand banks.

Saratoga-Yorktown- two important and decisive battles for America. They are both victories for America.  Republican Motherhood- Came from US War of Independence. Concept that women should educate themselves in the principles of liberty, independence, and democracy so as to inculcate the coming generation with these republican values. This was one sign that women were becoming more respected as intellectually capable.

Shays’ Rebellion 1786- Daniel Shay (Revolutionary War veteran) gathered farmers and marched to courthouse because of trade issues and taxes, preventing state Supreme Court from meeting. State sent troops to fight them and suppressed them. Shay and his rebellion were arrested.

Land Ordinance of 1785 -Provided for surveying western territories into 6 square mile townships before sale at auction. Compromise between south’s sale to individuals and NE’s sale to groups or companies. 1 section for education and schooling.

Imposts -Section 8 of the Constitution. Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the US. But all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the US.

Annapolis Convention 17855 -states met “to discuss common problems of commerce”. All talk, no action. Decided not to make any changes due to lack of reps from other states, so Hamilton suggested they meet in Philadelphia to “fix” the Articles of Confederation.

3/5 Compromise-North argued slaves should be counted for federal taxation. South disagreed but still wanted slaves counted as people to determine number in House of Representatives. Eventually Every slave counted as 3/5 of a person.

1808 Compromise- Allowed the slave trade to continue, but placed a date-certain on its survival. Congress eventually passed a law outlawing the slave trade that became effective on January 1, 1808.

Virginia Plan- a political plan that wanted 2 houses; upper and lower. A strong central government and representation that is proportional to population.  New Jersey Plan- a political plan that wanted equal representation in every state regardless of population.  Northwest Ordinance of 1787- Establishes government for West. First governed by governor and 3 judges, then territory with legislature, and then state. Determines process of dividing territory and writing territory constitution. Banded by Ohio & Mississippi Rivers and Great Lakes. Same rights as original 13 states. Prohibited slavery.

Great Compromise- Delegates at Great Convention decided to have bicameral legislature: Lower House- House of Representatives dependent on population (Virginia Plan – favored by larger states) and Upper House- Senate, with equal number of representatives per state (2 per state) (New Jersey Plan – small states). All revenue bills begin in house. Any bill that says it will take money will begin in house of representatives because they are closer to the people.

The Federalists Papers 1788- by Madison, Jay and Hamilton. To convince voters in Virginia and New York that constitution was worth a chance. Had little impact but finally New York and Virginia supported it.

Checks and balances- Phrase to describe the separation of powers/branches of government. By dividing powers between legislature, executive (President), and judiciary, no one branch can be too powerful. Each one can “check” the other’s actions. Antifederalists -People against federalists in 1787. Disagreed with the Constitution because they believed people’s rights were being taken away without a Bill of Rights. Appealed to “common man” as they didn’t want an elected aristocracy. Gave in a bit when promised the Bill of Rights, which they wanted because the British constitution is unwritten so no one can claim any rights.

Bill of Rights 1791- By Madison (since he wrote the Constitution too). First 10 amendments of Constitution. Added in 1791. Guarantees civil liberties like freedom of speech, free press, and freedom of religion, etc. written to satisfy the needs of states fearful of losing their rights (anti-federalists.

Hamilton’s Economic Plans 1792-94- Funding and Assumption. (Funding- funding the national debt. ‘Spend your way out of debt’ by funding the old debt. Government taxes and uses bonds (citizens lend government money) – people who gave money will pay taxes, will want government to succeed so they get their money back.) (Assumption- the central government takes (assumes) all of the state debts.) Funding and assumption later lead to the formation of political parties.

Whiskey Rebellion 1795- 1st major challenge to federal authority. Small rebellion that began in Southwestern Pennsylvania in 1794. Challenge to the national governments unjust use of an excise tax on whiskey. Washington crushed the rebellion with excessive force, proving the strength of the national governments power in its military. Shows that constitution is supreme law and that there are severe limits to what people can do to oppose government.

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