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Western Expansion & Reform: 1829-1859 (Overview)

Many Americans of this time, embrace the notion of enlarging the "empire for liberty." In other words they want to expand the borders of America westward. While some pioneers head west to California, others attempt to expand the idea of what "liberty" in America means. Abolitionists oppose laws that keep African Americans enslaved, and advocates of women's suffrage argue that wives, mothers and daughters play a more significant role in society by voting, holding office, and working outside the home.

What do you know about Western Expansion & Reform (1829-1859)? Try this US History Made Easy Quiz. "Check Your Answers" at the end of the page.

Trivia powered by Prof. Walter1) On March 4, 1829, who becomes the 7th President of the United States?

  • Martin Van Buren
  • John C. Calhoun
  • Andrew Jackson
  • Aaron Burr

2) In 1830, Congress passes the Indian Removal Act, which authorizes the President to negotiate treaties that exchange Indian tribal lands in the eastern states for lands west of the Mississippi River.

  • True or False?

3) Despite protests from the elected Cherokee government and many white supporters, the Cherokees are forced to make the long and cruel trek to the Indian Territory. Many died of disease and privation in what becomes known as the "Trail of Tears". When is the trek?

  • 1834
  • 1836
  • 1838
  • 1840

4) In response to South Carolina's threat, the President sends seven small naval vessels and a man-of-war to Charleston. When is the force sent?

  • November 1828
  • November 1830
  • November 1832
  • November 1834

5) In the election campaign that follows, the bank question causes a fundamental division between the merchant, manufacturing and financial interests (generally creditors who favor tight money and high interest rates), and the laboring and agrarian sectors, who are often in debt to banks and therefore favor an increase money supply and lower interest rates.

  • True or False?

6) Americans enter a period of rapid social change and experimentation. New social movements arise as well as many new alternatives to traditional religious thought. What is the movement known as?

  • First Heaven Conquest
  • Second Great Awakening
  • Rebirth of America
  • Second Wave of Christ

7) The reform movement in education begins in Massachusetts when they start the common school movement. They advocate a statewide curriculum and institute financing of school through local property taxes. Who is the leader of the common school movement?

  • Horace Mann
  • Ralph Moreland
  • Calvin Bishop
  • Rodney White

8) The social conscience that is raised in the early 1800s helps to elevate the awareness of mental illness and its treatment. A leading advocate of reform for mental illness is a Massachusetts woman who makes an intensive study of the conditions that the mentally ill are kept in. Who is this leading advocate.

  • Betty White
  • Dorothea Dix
  • Sharon Moore
  • Susan Tate

9) Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton brake from the cult when they organize the Seneca Falls Convention to call for women's rights. They call for a women�s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York. It is at this convention that Elizabeth Baumfree becomes recognized as a leading spokesperson for both abolition and women�s rights.

  • True or False

10) It is established to help slaves out of the South through a series of trails and safe houses known as �stations.� Known as �conductors�, escape slaves volunteer to return to the South to lead others to safety. What is the organization known as?

  • Morgan Hunters
  • Midnight Riders
  • Underground Railroad
  • Wagon's North

Check Your Answers

Western Expansion & Reform (Overview) (Answers)

  1. Andrew Jackson
  2. True
  3. 1838
  4. November 1832
  5. True
  6. Second Great Awakening
  7. Horace Mann
  8. Dorothea Dix
  9. False. It is at this convention that Sojourner Truth became recognized as a leading spokesperson for both abolition and women's rights.
  10. The Underground Railroad


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