Negro Slavery in America

Negro slavery had been introduced into the American colonies in 1619 when the Dutch ship brought its cargo of human chattels to Virginia. Throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, as the plantation system came to be an integral part of the Southern economy, slavery as the source of plantation labour seemed more and more identified with the South`s economic well-being.

There were numbers of Americans, however, who didn`t support the slave-holders` rationalizations. Many of them joined the numerous Northern societies dedicated to the abolition of slavery.

Abraham Lincoln`s election in 18860 was followed by secession the formation of a Southern Confederacy, and ultimately by Civil War.

Six weeks after Lincoln`s inauguration Southern batteries fired on Fort Summer, and the war came.

During the bitter years of sectional conflicts that proceeded secession and war, Southern agrarians had steadfastly opposed Northern industrialists. On April 9, 1865, in the town of Appomattox, Court House in Virginia, Robert E. Lee surrendered his armies – and the southern policy - to general Ulysses S. grant. The war was over; the union was preserved.

On April 14, 1865, when A. Lincoln was struck down by an assassin`s bullet, radical republicans exclaimed that it was “ God`s will ”.

The Ku Klux Klan and other instruments designed by the Southern whites to terrorize Negroes expressed far more than a simple reaction to political corruption. In adopting their violently oppressive tactics Southern whites were indicating their basic hostility to any free and equal participation in the political progress by the Negroes whom they so recently, and so unwillingly, emancipated.

 

The Civil War in the USA (1861 – 1865)

Tension between anti – slavery and pro – slavery, North and South, party lines grew and threatened the Union.

The Republican Party in 1860 was a northern rather than a mere anti- slavery party.

Abraham Lincoln was nominated as the only candidate. In December, 1860, as Lincolnwas nominated as the only candidate. In December, 1860, as Lincoln’s election was certain, South Carolina formally seceded from the Union and declared herself an independent nation. Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Texas followed her lead in January, 1861. On February 8, a congress of their delegates formed the Confederate States of America, with a constitution differing from that of the United States in stressing states’ rights and making slavery the corner- stone. The next day Jefferson Davis was chosen president of the Confederacy. On March 4, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated president of the United States.

Few would face the facts and admit that Union could only be restored by force. For the Confederates would have no more union with the North at any price.

In early April, 1861, the Civil War began. There were two necessary roads to victory: constricting the South by blockade, and defeating the Southern armies. Until the end of 1862. Lincoln shared the belief of his people that the capture of Richmond, the Confederate capital, would end the war.

In April, 1862, the Northern army began to move on Richmond by the Yorktown Peninsula. Napoleon III was urging the British cabined to join intervention. European liberals and the British working men stood stoutly for the abolition of slavery.

 

THE GREAT DEPRESSION

By 1932 thousands of American banks and over 100,000 businesses had failed. Industrial production was cut in half, wages had decreased 60 percent, and one out of every four workers was unemployed. That year Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected president on the platform of "a New Deal for the American people."

Roosevelt's jaunty self-confidence galvanized the nation. "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself," he said at his inauguration. He followed up these words with decisive action. Within three months -- the historic "Hundred Days" -- Roosevelt had rushed through Congress a great number of laws to help the economy recover. Such new agencies as the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Works Progress Administration created millions of jobs by undertaking the construction of roads, bridges, airports, parks, and public buildings. Later the Social Security Act set up contributory old-age and survivors' pensions.

Roosevelt's New Deal programs did not end the Depression. Although the economy improved, full recovery had to await the defense buildup preceding America's entry into World War II.

WORLD WAR II Again neutrality was the initial American response to the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939. But the bombing of Pearl Harbor naval base in Hawaii by the Japanese in December 1941 brought the United States into the war, first against Japan and then against its allies, Germany and Italy. American, British, and Soviet war planners agreed to concentrate on defeating Germany first. British and American forces landed in North Africa in November 1942, proceeded to Sicily and the Italian mainland in 1943, and liberated Rome on June 4, 1944. Two days later -- D-Day -- Allied forces landed in Normandy. Paris was liberated on August 24, and by September American units had crossed the German border. The Germans finally surrendered on May 5, 1945. The war against Japan came to a swift end in August of 1945, when President Harry Truman ordered the use of atomic bombs against the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Nearly 200,000 civilians were killed. Although the matter can still provoke heated discussion, the argument in favor of dropping the bombs was that casualties on both sides would have been greater if the Allies had been forced to invade Japan.

Speak about:

1 First expeditions to the New World: Ch. Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci.

2 The Colonial Period.

3 Declaration of Independence.

4 The World War

5 The Great Depression

6 Civil Rights movement.

7. The Great depression

8.World war II









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