AP US History Notes: Period 5 (1844-1877) Love these notes?Get the full Kaplan APUSH book from Amazon here! Five Things to Know about Period 5: 1.Americans enthusiastically supported Western expansion in hopes of finding new economic opportunities. The philosophy of “Manifest Destiny” emerged as motivation for this westward migration. America’s expansionist philosophy extended into foreign policy as well, as evidenced by conflict over the Oregon territory with Britain and involvement in the Mexican-American War. 2.The Compromise of 1850, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and the Dred Scott decision were all important attempts made by national leaders and the courts to resolve the issues surrounding slavery. 3.Debates about slavery—as well as economic, political, and cultural differences—led to a widening gap between the North and South. Despite various efforts at compromise, the South (11 states in all) seceded from the United States to form The Confederate States of America. America would soon afterwards become embroiled in the Civil War. 4.Due to superior military strategy, more resources, a larger population, and stronger infrastructure, the Union defeated the Confederacy. During the war, President Lincoln declared an end to slavery with the Emancipation Proclamation, and after the war, worked to rebuild the country. After his assassination, many questions remained, however, about the role of the federal government and citizens’ rights, including women, African Americans, and other minorities. 5.After the Civil War, the Thirteenth Amendment officially ended slavery, and the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments further expanded the rights of African Americans. Despite these efforts, African Americans faced great hardships in gaining equal rights and employment. Key Topics-- Period 5 (1844-1877 C.E.) Remember that the AP US History exam tests you on the depth of your knowledge, not just your ability to recall facts. While we have provided brief definitions here, you will need to know these terms in even more depth for the AP US History exam, including how terms connect to broader historical themes and understandings. The Impacts of Manifest Destiny
●Manifest Destiny: Coined by journalist John O’Sullivan in 1845 to describe the belief that it was God’s will for the United States to expand westward to the Pacific Ocean. It also describes a more general expansionism, such as the dispute over the Oregon Territory that Polk campaign on and the U.S. expansion into the Southwest following the Mexican-American War. ●Oregon Trail: Throughout the 1840s, a flood of settlers began traversing the dangerous Oregon Trail. Families traveled up to six months in caravans, covering only about 15 miles per day with good weather. While living on the trail, some women began to run prayer meetings and schools to maintain some vestiges of home. Women also began to take on new roles outside of homemaking and childcare, such as repairing wagon wheels and tending to livestock.