Expansion, Reform, and Unification
In this chapter students explore three significant issues in the antebellum era: Indian Removal, the push for social reform, and the debate over slavery. The lesson on Indian Removal helps students understand how some of the major forces underlying the politics of the period, including westward expansion, the debate over government powers, and racism, impacted government policy. The next two lessons focus on the debate over slavery and explore the part women played in the abolition movement. The fourth lesson uses the Lincoln–Douglas debates to help students understand the growing sectionalism that eventually led to war, while the final lesson asks students to evaluate Reconstruction.