Learning Goal: I’m working on a history writing question and need an explanation
Learning Goal: I’m working on a history writing question and need an explanation and answer to help me learn.
Style format: 12 pointfont, double spaced lines, one inch page margins, no extra spaces
between paragraphs, indented first sentences of paragraphs
File format: a single .doc, .docx, .rtf or .pdf file containing all your answers to the questions
Assignment prompt: Complete all parts of the assignment described below. Incomplete
responses will result in significant grade deductions.
PART 1: Political Polarization (20%)
Answer the following question: According to Eric Foner’s textbook, Give Me Liberty!, why was
the era following the Mexican American War (1846-48) marked by growing political polarization
in the United States? To support your answer, summarize Foner’s explanation of the role of two
of the following four topics in increasing political polarization between 1848 and 1860: The
Fugitive Slave Act, the Kansas Nebraska Act, the Dred Scott v Stanford Supreme Court decision,
or the raid on Harper’s Ferry.
Your answer should include one paragraph to answer the first question, and one paragraph per
topic, for a total of three (3) paragraphs. Because you are summarizing the Foner text, you
should not draw from any outside sources as part of answering this question.
PART 2: Civil War (30%)
Why, in Abraham Lincoln’s 1861 inaugural address, does he argue that “the central idea of
secession, is the essence of anarchy”? Why, according to Abraham Lincoln’s July 4, 1861 speech
to Congress, does he describe southern states as being in rebellion, rather than having seceded
from the United States? Answer each of these two questions with at least one substantial
paragraph. Include and analyze a quote from the text as part of your answer.
PART 3: Emancipation (50%)
Write a short essay that answers this question: how did African Americans contribute to the
end of slavery in the United States, and to the Union winning the Civil War?
Your essay should have an introductory paragraph summarizing your answer to both parts of
the question (the end of slavery and the end of the Civil War). The first body paragraph should
answer the first part of the question and the second body paragraph should answer the second
part of the question. Each paragraph should draw information from and explain at least one
quote from at least one document in assigned reading for August 22.
Extra Credit (up to 3% extra)
Drawing from assigned primary source reading for and lecture on August 18, explain how
creation of the Republic of Texas (1836-45) might help us understand something the origins of
the U.S. Civil War (1861-65). Minimum two paragraphs.
Identifying and Citing Sources
When quoting a text, you must identify in your writing who or what you are quoting—for
example, the text itself, the name and title of a person quoted in the text, the name of an
historical figure referenced in the text, the title and date of a document that runs alongside the
main text, etc. If the meaning of the quote is not obvious, you should analyze and/ or explain
the quote’s meaning and how it helps support your argument.
All sources for this assignment (including assigned readings) must be cited using footnotes or
endnotes formatted according to the Chicago Manual of Style:
Failure to place verbatim text from other sources in quotes, failure to cite outside sources, or
having someone complete your assignment for you are forms of plagiarism and violations of the
student code. Students who are found to have plagiarized any of the answers, including the
extra credit, will receive a zero for the assignment, and no opportunity to redo the assignment.