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Slavery played a prominent role in America’s political, social, and economic history in the antebellum era. The “peculiar institution” was at the forefront of discussions ranging from the future of the nation’s economy to western expansion and the admission of new states into the Union. The public discourse in the first half of the nineteenth century exposed the nation’s ambivalence about slavery and race. Politicians were increasingly pressured to make their opinions known, and Abraham Lincoln was no exception....
The Electoral College consists of 538 electors, who are representatives typically chosen by the candidate’s political party, though some state laws differ. Each state’s number of electors is based on its congressional delegation (one for each member in the House of Representatives and one for each member in the Senate). Currently, a total of 270 electoral votes is required to win the presidency.Prior to the 1804 election the first runner-up became vice president, as spelled out in the US Constitution. As a...
This lesson on Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address is part of Gilder Lehrman’s series of Common Core–based units. These units were written to enable students to understand, summarize, and analyze original texts of historical significance. Students will demonstrate this knowledge by writing summaries of selections from the original document (and related documents) and, by the end of the unit, articulating their understanding of the complete document by answering questions in an argumentative writing style to...
This lesson is part of Gilder Lehrman’s series of Common Core State Standards–based teaching resources. These resources were developed to enable students to understand, summarize, and analyze original texts of historical significance. Through a step-by-step process, students will acquire the skills to analyze any primary or secondary source material.Overview
Over the course of this lesson, students will examine text, context, and subtext, as well as the types of rhetorical devices that Lincoln employed in...
This lesson on President Lincoln’s two inaugural addresses is part of Gilder Lehrman’s series of Common Core State Standards–based units. These units enable students to understand, summarize, and analyze original texts of historical significance. Through a step-by-step process, students will acquire the skills to analyze any material. Although this lesson is designed for high school students, middle school students could certainly handle it by moving more slowly through the process of the lesson, adding more modeling of...