Watershed Moment Essay

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The year 1865 marked the beginning of great change in the United States. “An argument can be made that 1865 was a watershed moment, making it the most significant year in America’s young history (CSU, n.d., “Watershed Moment”). The Civil War came to an end in April of that year along with the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. The post- Civil War era marked the start of a new era in the country’s history. The period of Reconstruction to the Progressive Era if often referred to as the Gilded Age. The country continued to move West in the quest of Manifest Destiny which would lead to confrontations with the Native Americans. These confrontations would include the acquisition of land and extensive mineral deposits that would be discovered in the western territories of the United States. The citizens of the United States began to look for opportunities out West after the Civil War. The Homestead Act and other government programs pushed for the settlement of the western territories of the United States. As more and more settlers moved west conflicts began to emerge with the Native Americans. Americans believed they had the right to the land out West as part of the fulfillment of Manifest Destiny. The land out west was not only…show more content…
Mark Twain was quite the satirist and the term is used to describe the greed, corruption, and economic inequality that troubled America during this time period. Twain also used this term to describe the mass consumption of cheap, worthless goods that began to be mass produced as the nation became an Industrial Society. A great deal of these faults stemmed directly from the government. Andrew Johnson followed Abraham Lincoln after his assassination and became the first President to be impeached. The administrations that followed President Johnson also fell victim to corruption and
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