The United States from the Discovery of the New World to the Reconstruction Era

The United States from the Discovery of the New World to the Reconstruction Era

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When it comes to assessing the accuracy and the significance of an event in the history, primary sources are one of the first and foremost evidence that are used to justify that event. Without those primary sources, it would be difficult to know if an event really exists and under what circumstances that event happened. Primary sources are credible, first-hand sources from the past that are related to historical events, recorded by the people who witnessed the events. They have to be created within a time frame of 40 to 50 years since the date the events took place. Examples of primary sources are official documents such as the Declaration of Independence, Congressional records, treaties, laws… or private documents such as letters, diaries, and journals. Autobiographies, drawings, manuscripts, and literature can also be primary sources. Primary sources give an inside view of an event, help us view history in different perspectives, therefore understand history better.
The thirteen primary sources in my project will give readers an overview of some key events that happened back in the days when the new land had just been discovered by Europeans to the founding of the nation to the reconstruction era. After reading this project, reader will understand the connection between an event stated in the source and its significance to the nation’s history in the short term and in the long term.
Those primary sources I chose do not follow any particular patterns or historical themes. They were randomly chosen based on my assessment on their significance to the US history. This project has taught me that although the United States does not have a long history compared to other countries, its history was complicated and had many twists and...


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...zed former slaves and black people; it gave them the right to enjoy the unalienable rights they had been seeking for years. Since blacks were counted as free people, the increase in the states’ populations would increase the seats for states’ representation in the House of Representatives. Southern states, with a large number of black populations, benefited from it. However, it was also a hard choice for southerners. They had to either let black people vote and “keep their state’s full representation” or “limit the vote to whites and sacrifice part of their political power” (Foner 573). So in a sense, the fourteenth amendment also helped open the door for black suffrage although the document itself did not give blacks the right to vote.




Works Cited

Foner, Eric. Give Me Liberty!: An American History. Fourth ed. Vol. 1. New York: W.W. Norton, 2012. Print.

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