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History Terms (2nd Semester)
Freshman 2nd semester US History Terms, normal sophomore level course vocabulary.
10th Grade

Additional History Flashcards




Dawes Act

Who: The US government (U.S. Senator Henry L. Dawes of Massachusetts) to the Native Americans

What: Encouraged quicker Americanization, the Indians were main streamed and absorbed into society, they were forced to accept Christianity and white education, forced to abandon their tribe and culture to become farmers, males could get 160 acres of land if they left the reservation and farmed, children would be sent away to “Indian” schools

When: signed into effect in 1887, reversed in 1934


Why: Poverty led many Indians to sell their land to whites, leaving them literally homeless. 





Who: Americans over minorities (Native Americans, blacks, Irish, and Chinese)

What: –noun

1. Sociology. It is the belief in the inherent superiority of one's own ethnic group or culture.

2. A tendency to view alien groups or cultures from the perspective of one's own.

When: All through America’s history specifically during the civil war and then (marked by the Dawes Act) 1887-1934

Where: America

Why: Impacted the way that white, Americans worked their every day life (transcontinental railroad was built on the backs of immigrants)

Labor Unions

Who: Samuel Gompers (head of the American Federation of Labors)

What: Organization of workers that banded together to achieve common goals such as better working conditions.

When: major increase in participants in 1917

Where: In America

Why: The AFL unions strongly encouraged their young men to enlist in the military, and fiercely opposed efforts to reduce recruiting and slow war production


Yellow Journalism

Who: Joseph Pulitzer's New York World and William Randolph Hearst’s New York Journal

What: no legitimate well-researched news and instead uses eye-catching headlines to sell more newspapers.

When: late 1800’s

Where: Became really common all over America

Why: eventually influenced laws such as “slander” of today and also influenced the reliability of how people look at the media


Andrew Carnegie:


Who: Andrew Carnegie =0)

What: Scottish-American industrialist, businessman, entrepreneur and a major philanthropist. Because a very rich man with a fortune to the point of where he basically controlled the entire steel industry.

When: November 25, 1835 – August 11, 1919

Where: Born in Scotland than made a living in America

Why:  Men like Carnegie could go into a small town, offer prices lower than the locals could afford, put them outta business and then when they were the only option, raise the prices to take advantage of people.


Gospel of Wealth

Who: Andrew Carnegie

What: an essay that basically said weath isn’t a bad thing, viewed as a sign of God’s approval, It is the Christian duty to accumulate wealth, shouldn’t help the poor

When: 1889

Where: It was published in an issue of the North American Review, then requested to be published in England.

Why: Changed the way that Americans viewed the rich and began giving instruction to the rich

Social Darwinism

Who: American historian Richard Hofstadter

What: ideology, which believed in “survival of the fittest”. Refers to notions of struggle for existence being used to justify social policies which make no distinction between those able to support themselves and those unable to support themselves, stressed competition between individuals in free market capitalism, associated with ideas of struggle between national or racial groups

When: popularized in 1944

Where: in the United States

Why: used to defend racism

Bessemer Process

Who: Henry Bessemer. Andrew Carnegie used.

What: Process of turning pig iron into steal

When: 1885

Where: American industrialization

Why: changed the way that America used industry: skyscrapers possible 

Progressive Movement


What: Time when there was a call for reform to solve conflict. Helped women suffrage. 

When: End of 1800’s beginning of 1900’s



Triangle shirtwaist fire

Who: 146 factory workers died

What:  A that fire caused the deaths of 146 garment workers, most of them women. The doors were locked to ensure the women wouldn’t leave early.

When: March 25, 1911

Where: Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City

Why: led to legislation requiring improved factory safety standards and helped spur the growth the fight for better working conditions for sweatshop workers.

Klu Klux Klan

Who: A lot of veterans of the confederate army

What: extremist reactionary who believed in white nationalism, and anti-immigration, historically expressed through terrorism.

When: 1860’s-1870’s

Where: America (mostly the south)

Why: An example of ethnocentrism. They were a big part of American racists and still exist today.


Red scare:


Who: Anti-communist people

What: anti- communist era and fear of Russian control.

When: started in 1917 with the Russian revolution. Came to America in 1920

Where: First in Europe then migrated to America

Why: Communism appealed to the poor people. The poor people were immigrants. The immigrants were from Russia. The immigrants were hated even more because they were Russians. 

Angel Island

Who: Asians who came in, contrary to Ellis Island where they took Europeans

What: Dirty, filthy conditions. A “pass” that the Asians had to go through in order to enter America. There was an intense legal and medical test that the immigrants had to pass in order to enter America.

When: opened in 1910

Where: San Francisco Bay



Populist Movement:


Who: Started by farmers in the South William Jennings Bryan (head of peoples party)

What: Stood for unification, dominated democrat and republican parties.

When: 1891 was a powerful political party

Where: An American Political Party.

Why: Established the secret ballots and direct elections. 

Teddy Roosevelt

Who: FDR

What: 32nd president of the United States. Led the allies during WW2. Established the “New Deal” which were designed to produce relief (especially government jobs for the unemployed), recovery (of the economy), and reform (through regulation of Wall Street, banks and transportation). He created the first National Park.

When: 1882-1945

Where: Born in New York

Why: He was the leader of the Democratic Party and a lot of his political New Deal ideas are still here such as the “Health Care reform” bill.


National Parks:


Who: FDR greatly supported them

What: A reserve of natural or semi-natural land, declared or owned by a government, set aside for human recreation and enjoyment.

When: The first national park was established in 1872

Where: Mostly in the West

Why: The ideas that America was huge and never ending, were coming to a reality. People began to care about the environment. 




Who: Large Companies (standard oil company is an example)

What: a market where there are many buyers and only one seller. Illegal. Low competition, high prices.


Where: America

Why: Monopolies could control the country and killed small businesses 

Laissez Faire

Who: individual business owners vs. the government.

What: French word for “let it be”. Said the government couldn’t interfere with your personal life besides the basic keeping peace. “Describes an environment in which transactions between private parties are free from state intervention, including restrictive regulations, taxes, tariffs and enforced monopolies.”

When: late 1800’s


Why: protection over personal boundaries


Civil Service Exam:


Who: The Pendleton Civil Service Act implemented

What: A test you have to take in order to be a “civil servant” or have a government job.

When: 1883

Where: America

Why: Got rid of the spoil system and started to have a more consistent and dependable government. Government jobs would theoretically go to those most qualified, not those who simply relied on political connections.

Spoils System

Who: Andrew Jackson 

What: Surrounded himself with people loyal to him, not necessarily the people who are best at the job.

When: 1829-1883

Where: The government system

Why: Federalists v. antifederalists because people believed that the executive branch was becoming too powerful. Back to the idea of corruption of government.

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