Formative Events In United States History Essay

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Formative Events in United States History During the formative period of American history, there are three large events that stand out in comparison to the rest in the way they affected the nation as a whole. Without the revolution, America would not have begun. Without the expansion to the west, the United States would not be the large size that it is today, and would not be able to have such a large and growing population. Finally, without the Civil War, the nation may still have slavery as a legal form of free labor, which would greatly change the way the United States is seen as “the home of the free.” These three events during the formative period of the United States shaped the nation to be what it is today, and without them, the country …show more content…
After the Louisiana Purchase, they continued to expand west towards territories owned by Mexico. Westward expansion caused some problems, mostly because the only way to travel there was on foot with carriages, and many people did not make it to the west like they had planned. During this expansion to the west, the country began to divide, and the three sections were the north, south, and the new west territory. The northerners wanted to have a strong federal government lead the country, and they believed that blacks could be free, unlike the south. The southern states wanted the federal government involved in very little, and they believed that they were superior to the slaves and they shouldn’t be freed or born free. Many of the people believed that the west had the devil there, and that they needed to send people who would not cause conflict in the settling of the new lands. One reverend said “we want men free from prejudice, bigotry, and sectarianism. We’ve had fighting enough out there. And old Satan can cut out work enough in that way” (348). The people in the United States wanted to send men who believed in God and wanted to keep peace in the west, not start more wars between them and Mexico or the natives. Westward expansion proved that the United States was a powerful …show more content…
During this time, the north and the south faced against one another in a fight over whether or not slavery should be legal or illegal. The north did not want slavery to be legal, but the south did. Slavery was such a huge part of the people’s lives in the south, and they depended on that free labor from slaves to continue to make a living on their plantations. The northern United States won the war, and slavery became illegal, but the lifestyle in the south rarely changed. Once the new law was made, it was rarely enforced in the southern states, which led to violence against the newly freed slaves. The former slave owners believed that they were superior than their prior slaves, which led to the formation of the Ku Klux Klan, a terrorist group that rose in the south to terrorize, attack, and kill former slaves and anyone who supported their freedom. The terrorism from the Klan spread throughout the south, and the division between the north and the south continued to exist even after the Civil War ended. The Civil War and the reconstruction shaped the United States to be closer to what it is today, and without this historical event, slavery may still be legal, which was a huge step forward to change the

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