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100 Cards in this Set

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date of the first permanent English settlement in North America (Jamestown)


the first permanent English settlement in North America (1607, Virgina); tobacco was the main reason for its success


the peacekeeper between the Powhatan and the settlers; save John Smith's life; married John Rolfe

John Rolfe

developed a mild-tasting tobacco that helped Jamestown to succeed; married Pocahontas


an economic system in which nations increase their wealth and power by obtaining gold and silver by establishing a favorable balance of trade; colonies should benefit the home or mother country; trade with England; colonies sent raw materials to England and bought manufactured goods from England

Middle Passage

voyage of the slave ships from Africa to the Americas; one of the legs of triangular trade


a person held in bondage for labor; provided a permanent source of cheap labor; considered property

Motives for Settlement

reasons for settlers to move from their home country to a new land

Political Freedom

not ruled by the king; right to self-government (govern themselves); one of the motives for settlement

Economic Opportunity
opportunity to earn money to buy and own land; favorable balance of trade with England; one of the motives for settlement

Religious Freedom

The right to worship who and how one wants; not ruled by the king; one of the motives for settlement

Social Mobility

the dream of improving one's life and the lives of one's children; upward mobility; one of th emotives for settlement

July 4, 1776
date on which the Declaration of Independence was adopted

Samuel Adams

a patriot organizer; takes credit for the Sons of Liberty and the Boston Tea Party, as well as Committees of Correspondence

John Adams

Patiot lawyer; defended British soldiers after the Boston Massacre; need for justice to prevail on both sides

Thomas Jefferson
main author of the Declaration of Independence
Thomas Paine
author of Common Sense and American Crisis; ridiculed the idea that kings ruled by the will of God
Salutary Neglect

hands-off policy of England towards its American colonies during the first half of the 1700s; governors rarely enforced laws that parliament passed; colonists got used to acting on their own


a refusal to buy certain foods and products

aboslute power by a single ruler
Writs of Assistance
search warrants that allowed British officers to enter colonial homes or businesses to search for smuggled goods
colonial grievances
complaints against the king listed in the Declaration of Independence; imposing taxes without our consent, depriving us in many cases of the benefits of trial by jury; quartering British soldiers, etc.

Sons of Liberty

a secret society of colonists that opposed British policies; led protests, tarred and feathered tax collectors, and burned ships
Albany Plan of Union

a suggestion stating that the colonies band together for defense during the French and Indian War; plan was defeated; authored by Ben Franklin

French and Indian War
the British colonists were fighting the French for territory and power; Britain won, colonists were proud, and France lost all lands in North America

Proclamation of 1763

law forbade colonists to settle west of the Appalachian Mountains in order to keep peace with the Native Americans, who helped the British win the war

Sugar Act

placed a tax on sugar, molasses, and other products shipped to the colonies; strict enforcement of the law and harsh punishment of smugglers; ended salutary neglect

Quartering Act
law requiring the colonisnts to house the British soldiers and provide them with supplies (colonies to pay for building barracks and supplies)
Stamp Act
law requiring all legal and commercial documents to carry an official stamp showing that a tax had been paid; all diplomas, contracts, newspapers, and will had to carry a stamp

Declaratory Act

law said that parliament had supreme authority to govern the colonies

Townshend Acts
the first act suspended the New York Assembly until they agreed to provide housing for troops; other acts placed duties or import taxes on various goods brought into colonies (tea, paint, lead, glass, paper); search warrants were used to search for smuggled goods

Boston Massacre

group of youths and dock workers started trading insults and thorwing things in front of Customs House - fight broke out; shots were fired; 5 men were killed; soldiers were found not guilty (self defense)

Tea Act

law gave the British East India Company control over the American tea trade; tea would arrive in the colonies only in the trading company's ships and could only be sold by merchants

Boston Tea Party
a group of men disguised as Native Americans boarded 3 tea ships docked in Boston Harbor; destroyed 342 chests of the tea by breaking the chests and throwing the tea overboard
Intolerable Acts
closed the port of Boston until colonists paid for the destroyed tea; banned the Committees of Correspondence; allowed Britain to house troops wherever necessary

First Continental Congress

delegates from all the colonies except Georgia met in Philadelphia in September 1774; vote to ban ll trade with Britain until the Intolerable Acts were repealed; each colony was to begin training troops

Lexington and Concord

700 British toops were met at dawn by Captain John Parker and about 70 minutemen; Americans refused to drop their muskets when ordered; someone fired; 8 militiamen died; "shot heard 'round the world."; redcoats retreated when met by 4,000 minutemen and militiamen; known as the first battles of the American Revolution

Declaration of Independence

this document separated the colonies from Britain; Thomas Jefferson wrote the document; 56 men signed it, committing treason against Great Britain; a government was established on the basis of the natural rights of people and the duty of government to honor those rights

Treaty of Paris 1783

Represetatives of the US and Britain signed this document; Great Britain agrees to recognize the US as an independent nation and give up its claim to all lands between the Atlantic Coast and the Mississippi River, from Canada south to Florida; and the US agreed to return all rights and property taken from Loyalists during the war

Battle of Yorktown

Cornwallis was surrounded by French and American troops on land and French ships at Chesapeake Bay. British troops surrendered to Washington. This was the lsat battle of the war.

Valley Forge

Washington and his men spent the winter here, training the army; farmers and merchants preferred to sell food, blankets, etc. to the British for gold; darkest time for Americans; bloodied footprints in the snow

Battle of Saratoga
turning point of the war; France became an ally of the Americans and sent money, weapons, troops, and warships; Spain also entered the war against Britain

Olive Branch Petition

Congress sent this to King George III, asking him to restore peace/harmony between Britain and the colonies. The King declared the colonies in rebellion, sending troops and blocking American ports.


a force of armed civilians pledged to defend their community during the American Revolution; an emergency military force that is not part of the regular army

George Washington
commander of the Continental Army; victories at Trenton, Princeton, and Yorktown; known for civic virtue

King George III

King of England during the Revolution

Patrick Henry

outspoken patriot at the Virginia House of Burgesses; proclaimed "...give me liberty or give me death!"

Individual Rights
personal liberties and priviledge guaranteed to US citizens by the Bill of Rights

Limited Government

the principle that requires all US citizens, including government leaders, to obey the law

Checks and Balances

the ability of each branch of government to exercise checks, or controls, over the other branches, to prevent any one branch from becoming too powerful

Separation of Powers
the division of basic government rules into branches


a system of government where power is shared among the central (or federal) government and the states


the belief that government should be based on the consent of the people; people exercise their power by voting for political representatives

Popular Sovereignty
government in which the people rule
Free Enterprise
an economic system in which individuals depend on supply and demand and the profit margin to determine what to produce, how to produce, how much to produce, and for whom to produce; financial improvement motivates consumers and products
Ratification (9/13)

the official approval of a written plan; it took 9 of 13 states to approve the constitution

Federalist Papers
a series of essays written by 3 men who supported a form of government that divided power between a strong central government and the states


people who opposed the ratification of the constitution; states should have more power; wanted a Bill of Rights; strong executive could become a tyrant


people who supported the ratification of the constitution; favored a strong national government and dividing powers among the 3 branches of government

US Constitution

American's written plan that provides the basic framework of the government (supreme law of the land)

National Government
same as central or federal government


an agreement in which both sides in a dispute give up something they want in order to achieve a settlement
Unalienable Rights

rights that the government cannot take away without due process; life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness

Three-Fifths Compromise
southern states would get to count slaves for population, but would also have to count them for taxation

Great Compromise

congress has 2 houses; senate would be equal (2 votes per state); representatives in the House would be based on population; Strong national government with three branches

New Jersey Plan

Congress has 1 house; each state has equal representation (1 voter per state); 3 branches: similar to the Articles; strong state governments

Virginia Plan

congress has 2 houses; representation on poulation or wealth; strong national government with 3 branches

Problems of the Constitutional Convention

Representation in Congress, slavery, regulating trade, and how the president would be elected

Philadelphia Convention

the meeting held to revise the articles; the delegates created a new plan of government called the United States constitution

Roger Sherman

committee memeber who worked out the Great Compromise to end the disputes between the Virginia and New Jersey plans; decide the representation issue in congress

William Paterson
presented an alternate plan to the Virginia Plan, known as the New Jersey Plan (supported the smaller states)

George Mason

Anti-federalist who insisted that a formal Bill of Rights be added to the constitution

James Madison

"father of the constitution" took extensive notes of the constitutional convention; created the Virginia plan; wrote the Federalist Papers (checks and balances); drafted the Bill of Rights

Powers of the Articles
wage war, make peace, sign treaties, and issue money
Articles of Confederation
nation's first constitution adopted by the Second Continental Congress and finally approved by the states in 1781 during the Revoltuion; limited document; states held most of the power

Legislative Branch - Powers

Power to make laws, lay and collect taxes, impeach and remove officials, declare war, raise and support military, override vetoes, establish lower federal courts, confirm appointments, and ratify treaties

Executive Branch - Powers

Power to execute or carry out laws, command the military, make treaties, appoint the military, make treaties, appoint federal judges and ambassadors, grant pardons and reprieves for federal crimes, veto legislation, call special sessions of congress, and report on the State of the Union

Judicial Branch - Powers

Power to interpret laws, decide whether laws are unconstitutional

Bill of Rights

1st 10 Amendments to the Constitution; protects every citizens liberties and freedoms

1st Amendment

freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly and petition

2nd Amendment

the right to keep and bear arms (guns)

3rd Amendment

no quartering (housing) of troops in people's homes

4th Amendment

protection from unreasonable search and seizures

5th Amendment

right to due process, cannot testify against yourself, no double jeopardy

6th Amendment

right to a speedy public trial, the right to be informed of the charge, right to an attorney and to question witnesses

7th Amendment

the right to trial by jury in civil cases

8th Amendment

protection from excessive bails or fines

protection from cruel and unusual punishments

9th Amendment

This right states that the people have more rights than are mentioned in the Bill of Rights

10th Amendment

The government only has the powers stated in the Constitution. All other powers are saved for the states and the people

Fundamental Orders of Connecticut

set of laws established in 1639 by the Puritans which expanded the idea of representative government, sometimes referred to as the first Constitution

Mayflower Compact

an agreement established by the Pilgrims which called for laws for the good of the colony and set forth the idea of representative government

Virginia House of Burgesses

first representative assembly in the colonies established in 1619


when the Pilgrims landed in Plymouth and the Mayflower Compact was written


believed people should live in peace and accepted different religions and ethnic groups. settled in Pennsylvania and wanted Native Americans treated fairly


rejected the Church of England and settled in Plymouth in 1620


settled in Massachusetts Bay in 1630 and reform of purify the Church of England

John Locke

Enlightenment thinker that said people have natural (God-given) rights including life, liberty and property. Said if the government doesn't protect these rights the people have a right to challenge it.

Southern Colonies

began Plantation style farming, slaves.

rice, indigo and tobacco

Middle Colonies

known as the Breadbasket, religious tolerance

Grains, flour

New England Colonies

major area for fishing and timber, practiced subsistence farming