The News

By: Claire S, Michael M, Tori K, Shaelyn G

Importance of the Mountain Men By: Tori K

Imagine traveling to unknown terrain in the Western Americas with no roads or guides. Most have turned around and gone back, but the mountain men are walking towards it. After the recent Lewis and Clark Expedition and the Louisiana Purchase, there has been a huge push for settlers to start a new life out in the west. Recently, settlers have been purchasing land in the west, but have been having difficulty arriving to their newly bought land because of the Rocky Mountains. In the past, some of the early travelers were left stranded in the middle of the Rockies and never made it out alive. This paved the way for Jedediah Smith, who has just been attacked by a wild bear, Jim Beckwourth, and other mountain men to find passes through the incredibly rocky terrain.

Just months ago, Jedediah Smith published his newly found pass called the South Pass. This revolutionary trail is wide enough for wagons to ride through allowing thousands of settlers to enter the Rockies a lot easier and in a shorter period of time. Though the South Pass will be one of the greatest passes found through the Rocky Mountains, it caused some near-death experiences for many mountain men. Jim Beckwourth, who had also found the popular Beckwourth Pass, has had to rely on his instincts and survival skills to make it through the rough terrain. Mountain men are turning the tide for the future of our country, and are discovering things most don’t even dare to try.

Why people are moving west By: Tori K

Mountain men are expanding U.S. borders and pushing for pioneers to open up the Far West. Although the fur trade has recently died down because of the increasingly popular silk hats, mountain men almost killed the entire beaver population. Because of this, trappers were forced to push more and more west to find more beavers. The trails that the mountain men have set, have allowed pioneers to start migrating on these trails. Thousands have already traveled on the newly found South Pass founded by the former mountain man, Jedediah Smith. The South Pass and many other trails are starting to allow for pioneers to migrate into the Far West and expand our country’s borders.

Not only will the mountain men open up the far west, they will also make way for future land speculators to earn money. Speculators buy large plots of land and sell off the land for greater amounts of money for profit. This system is becoming more and more popular because some people are looking to escape from people who they owe money to and many buy the land to fulfil their dream of owning a farm. Also, it is anticipated that manufacturers and merchants will move towards the far west to earn money by selling items to the new farmers. It is believed that this upcoming move west will expand our country’s borders and produce lots of money, but this would not have happened if it weren’t for the brave mountain men.

The Santa Fe Trail By:Tori K

Recently after Mexico gained independence from Spain, many borders have opened up, allowing Americans to finally be able to trade with Mexico. Not only has trade started in this region, but a rising Missouri trader, William Becknell, has found a trail from Missouri to the capital of Mexico called the Santa Fe Trail. Not only has Becknell made a huge profit off of the large amount of merchandise he sold, he also made headlines by reportedly earning lots of gold from his trade. With his treasure, Becknell and his men decided to travel to Santa Fe again through a desert because he could not pull his wagons over the mountain pass. Running out of water and soon facing death, Becknell and his companions cut of their camels’ ears for something to drink and killed their dogs for food to stay alive. Eventually, the men found a stream that saved their lives. The Santa Fe Trail could potentially pave way for many traders to travel on, so they can become wealthy like Becknell. Reaching Santa Fe, Becknell and his company made the revolutionary 800-mile journey, that may soon help all traders travel to Santa Fe and expand our country’s trade further west.

The Oregon Trail By:Tori K

Running from Independence, Missouri to the Oregon Territory, the Oregon Trail is helping hundreds of settlers migrate west. Recently, the first white people to travel to Oregon, Marcus and Narcissa Whitman, have begun attracting other interested settlers to also make the journey. For many years, Britain and America have been fighting over who owns Oregon, so the Whitmans have helped by attracting more Americans to the land. Also, there were rumors that Oregon had rich land and fertile soil. In this past year, almost 1,000 people have made the 2,000-mile journey from Missouri to Oregon, and it is expected to double next year!

The Sager family was a family who had unfortunately experienced the hardships of the Oregon Trail just this last year. Looking to find the hotly talked about cheap and fertile land in Oregon, the Sager family had just given birth to their seventh child only two months into their journey.Shortly after, one of their daughters, Catherine, fell under a wagon and crushed her leg. Eventually, both of the Sager parents died of “camp fever” leaving the seven Sager children as orphans. Luckily, the people that the Sager family had traveled with took care of the kids until they reached Oregon. When the children had reached Oregon, Marcus and Narcissa Whitman agreed to adopt them. The settlers who are traveling this 2,000-mile journey are experiencing lots of hardships and tragedies along the way. It takes bravery to risk it all in search for a better life out west.

The Mormon Trail By:Tori K

Causing great controversy in the east, Mormans have just recently traveled west for religious freedom. Founded in 1830, a man named Joseph Smith started the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints, where Mormons previously practiced their religion in New York. Living in closed communities and basing their lives off of the practice of polygamy, many Catholics thought that this way of life was immoral. Fourteen years later an anti-Mormon mob was held in Illinois and killed Joseph Smith in the process. The new Mormon leader, Brigham Young, decided to move his people to Utah and parts of Mexico for hope of peace and freedom. It is calculated that about 1,600 Mormons made this journey to Utah and the trail is called the Mormon Trail. Arriving at Utah, the Mormons quickly learned that there was little rainfall in Utah, so they are currently using canals to carry water to farms and to drink. Soon it is predicted that Utah is on its way to flourishing because of the clever new irrigation systems and may eventually become ideal farmland.

Problems with Mexico and Spain By: Michael M

Español, Texas


A part of land known as Tejas, was a Spanish land with desirable conditions for forests, farming, and grazing animals. It also had ports to the Gulf Of Mexico. Spanish soldiers drove away Americans that tried to claim it as part of the Louisiana Territory. Spain wanted more people to live in Texas, so that they would defend it against the Native Americans and Americans who sneaked into Texas. They offered huge chunks of land to empresarios. Moses Austin asked for permission to start a colony in Texas, which Spain agreed on.


A New Change Of Independence


After Austin arrived in Texas, Mexico broke from Spain. The land he was promised was now worthless. He spent over a year trying to convince the Mexican government to let him start his colony. They agreed, only if the the citizens were to be Mexican citizens, and Roman Catholics. 300 families moved into the colony, and were so obedient to the law, that they only used a simple latch to lock their houses. Americans started to move into Texas, outnumbering the population six to one.

Texas Gains Independence By: Michael M

Tensions Rise In Texas


As more Americans moved to Mexico, many tensions rose. Americans did not like that documents had to be in Spanish, and that slavery was outlawed in 1829. Since they wanted slaves for cotton, Austin was able to convince Mexico for the slave owners to keep slaves. Tejanos (Spanish people that live in Texas), thought that Americans thought they were more important than them, and Americans didn’t adapt to Mexican laws. An official was sent to Texans to investigate the tensions. He said that Texas was on the verge of revolution. Mexico closed Texas to American immigration, raised taxes, and sent more Mexican troops. This can only lead to more trouble.


Texas Rebels Against Mexico


While most Texans listened to Austin, who was loyal to Mexico, some thought about breaking from Mexico. So in 1833, Austin went to Mexico with a petition to request that Texas was to be a self-governing state within Mexico. General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna agreed with most of the statements, but when he found a letter Austin wrote saying that he would support the break from Mexico. Santa Anna viewed this as a rebellion, so he had Austin jailed for a year. Anna sent troops to seize the cannon in Gonzales. The troops were not able to capture the cannon though. The Texans drove the Mexican troops out of a fortress in Alamo. To the Mexicans, this meant war.


Alamo Is Fought Over


In March, 1836, Texas met about how to defeat the troops. The military leadership was assigned to Sam Houston, who was the only one with military experience. The army barely had anyone in it. The first group only had 420 men, and the second a group of 183 volunteers. The second group was led by William Travis. After 12 days of violent fighting, on the last day Anna sent his men to storm the fortress, about 1800. The Texans ran out of ammo, so the Mexicans killed all but five Texans at Alamo. He made one of the survivors tell the story of the battle to the Texans, to discourage more rebellion.


The Win Over San Jacinto


Texans fled to the east. Anna ordered them to be executed, so more than 300 Texans were killed. Houston’s army doubled to 800 men, who were furious. Santa Anna caught up with them on April 21st, 1836, at the Jacinto River. In 18 minutes, the Texans killed more than half of Anna’s army. He signed a treaty giving Texas its freedom, now making it independent.




Lone Star Republic Is Founded


In 1836, the Texans adopted a flag with one star on it, and called the new nation the Lone Star Republic. The elected leader was Sam Houston. Texas wanted to become part of the United States, but the U.S. refused, since Texas being a slave state would upset the balance in Congress, and it might lead to war with Mexico. However, this denial led to war in Texas instead.

Manifest Destiny and Troubles Between the US and Mexico By: Michael M

The Manifest Destiny Is Supported


Americans wanted to expand to the lands west, but it may cause problems with other countries. However, many people thought America was destined to expand west. John O´Sullivan gave a name to this belief called the Manifest Destiny. He published in his newspaper that the expansion of America was bound to happen, and when Polk was elected president in 1844, it became the government policy. Polk wanted to take over Oregon, but Britain gave half of it to the United States at the 49th parallel, and Polk was content with this.


Problems with Mexico


Congress admitted Texas as a slave state, even though Texas was part of Mexico. Mexico viewed this as an act of war. Mexico and Texas could not even agree on official boundaries, and the differences added up to thousands of miles. Polk sent John Slidell, who offered $25 million for Texas, California, and New Mexico, but Mexico refused. Polk sent General Taylor to station troops on disputed territory. Mexico killed some of these troops, so Congress declared war on Mexico. Despite conflicts about whether the war was right or not, Americans gave in to the war.

War with Mexico By: Michael M

America Gains New Mexico And California


In 1846, General Stephen Kearny marched with his men down the Santa Fe Trail, to go to war. They took six weeks, and travelled 650 miles. He just won New Mexico without firing a single bullet. He used persuasion to convince the Mexican troops that he meant to withdraw, which allowed him to easily take New Mexico. In California, a revolt was happening. Explorer John C. Fremont was leading the revolt against the Mexican rule, called the Bear Flag Revolt.They arrested the Mexican leader there, and declared California independent from Mexico. They raised a flag showing a grizzly bear in blackberry juice. U.S. troops eventually made it to California and gained control of all of California, which only had eight to twelve thousand Mexicans.


America Invades Mexico


The Americans were outnumbered by the Mexican Army. On February 22, 1847, Taylor’s 4,800 clashed with Santa Anna’s 15,000 troops. Anna offered Taylor a chance to surrender, but he refused. At the end of the second day, Santa Anna retreated. The War in Northern Mexico has ended. In Southern Mexico however, General Winfield Scott went to Veracruz and fought his way to Mexico City. At the Castle Of Chapultepec, 1,000 soldiers and and 100 young Military Men defended the fortress. Scott won the battle in 1847.


Mexico Gives Up


The war ended on February 2, 1848 from the Treaty Of Guadalupe Hidalgo. This gave Texas to the U.S. and had the Rio Grande as the border. It also gave up California, Nevada, Utah, most of Arizona, parts of New Mexico, Colorado, and Wyoming. Since Mexico lost half of its territory, America agreed to pay $15 million, plus an addition of $3.25 million for claims the U.S. had against Mexico. Lastly, the treaty promised to protect the Mexicans living in Texas and in the Mexican Cession. They were now a minority to America, but Mexicans taught them how to develop land for farming, ranching, and mining.

Completing Manifest Destiny By: Michael M

America bought a strip of land from Mexico for $10 million, called the Gadsden Purchase. It is located across southern New Mexico and Arizona. It was wanted for a southern railroad. President Polk made a monument to honor George Washington in California, to show the expansion of America from Mississippi to the Pacific Ocean.

Life Before the Gold Rush By: Shaelyn G

At the moment, California has around 150,000 Natives and between 8,000-12,000 Californios. These are the settlers of Spanish or Mexican descent. An example of one of the wealthy Mexicans includes Mariano Vallejo, who owns over 250,000 acres of land! Mexico protected California for as long as it could because it fears American immigration, but in 1822, their government became weaker. Because of this, they started to trade with the Americas which flourished and and improved relations between us and them at the time. We declared war against them recently back in 1846. In less than two years, the war has just finished and we claimed the areas of New Mexico and California for the cost of 15 million dollars.

If we go a few years back in 1839, John Sutter was given land by the Mexican governor. This set up the discovery of gold and was an important step in having control of California. Sutter is a Swiss immigrant who dressed charmingly in French army uniform, and impressed the governor who handed over 50,000 acres in the Sacramento Valley! This year in early January of 1848, John had the famous carpenter James Marshall scope out the land for what would become Sutter’s Mill. This was being constructed to set up a flourishing empire John Sutter dreamed of. During his inspection, he found some shiny gold!

California Finds Gold By: Shaelyn G

The news has spread quickly! Everyone in California is joining in on the race, and many others from all over the country wish to join. Gold findings are spreading from the findings near Sacramento to streams in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The reasons for wanting this precious metal are because it is scarce, very pretty, easy to shape or mold, and very durable and resistant to tarnishing. After the findings in early January of 1848, the race for gold and fortune have already started before the new year.

Thousands from the East, let me tell you, have three difficult and tricky routes they can choose with the slim chances of making a fortune. These include sailing 18,000 miles around South America to the Pacific Coast. Secondly, you could sail to the narrow Isthmus of Panama and cross overland then sail to California up the coast. Lastly, the adventurous can travel across the whole country practically all by land and dangerous trails. They would hike through rivers, prairies, great plains, mountains, mother nature, and face dangerous beasts along the way, braving all hardships possible throughout this route. Good luck to all!

The Lives of Miners By: Shaelyn G

The camps are evolving quickly from tents to stores and saloons. They all have cool names including Hangtown and Coyote Diggings. Also, the diversity here is amazing. Although approximately two-thirds are Americans, there are Native Americans, free blacks, enslaved African Americans, Europeans, Chinese, Mexicans, Australians, and so many more from regions with problems like severe crop failures. Conflicts include that finding gold is rare, the conditions are rough, the miners are exhausted, depressed, have poor food available, and many diseases are passing through through that are easy to catch in such confined spaces. That gives way to another conflict. Even if you successfully get to the mining camps, you have to find an area to set up at. Thousands are racing here and space is limited if not all booked. Many people are also homesick or lonely. Miners have to stand and swim in freezing water, not to mention how cold the air is. They face diseases including Cholera, Smallpox, and Scarlet Fever. An average meal could incorporate cooked wild game and coffee, but that is still rare.. Ice is plentiful!

Conflicts Between Miners By: Shaelyn G

Camps are super be dangerous. Miners are being murdered, whipped, hung, or are having fearful accidents or duels with each other. Many do not get along, for the thoughts mainly of greed are spread around. Many American miners are forcing foreign miners out or placed taxes on them for $20 a month. The biggest rivalry right now is between the Chinese and Americans. As the Chinese population grows, so does the American’s anger and hatred toward them. Since the easy gold to find is gone, we are forcing the foreign competition out. The tax that we put on was so high that most miners could not afford it, so they left. The Chinese are mostly being impacted, and ditched to start businesses and civilize. They are currently flourishing greatly and recently came up with the name of Chinatown for their region of civilization.

Impact of the Gold Rush By: Shaelyn G

The rush was over by 1852. California was hugely impacted, including the addition of over 250,000 people, and California becoming a state in 1850. The Gold Rush caused huge economic growth. Advancements in banking, manufacturing, shipping, and trade were also included. Two cities that were hugely impacted in a great way included Sacramento due to agricultural growth and port city San Francisco.

Although all these positive outcomes came, so did many negative ones. Most Californios, foreigners, and Native Americans suffered. They were not respected, and many were killed, put into jail, or had their properties seized for the Americans. The largest impact was California becoming the 16th free state, which disturbed the balance of congress compared to the 15 slave states, and gave the Northerners an advantage toward one of their main goals of abolishing slavery.

Reasons for Immigration By: Claire S

A surge of immigration in the US proves once again that America is the land of opportunity. People are flocking to the United States by the millions in search of a new life, and they will go through miserable conditions to get here. Most immigrants are coming to the country in the particularly unpleasant steerage of ships. Steerage, the least expensive deck of a ship, packs hundreds of people in a small, filthy, cramped space and has led to death and disease. Even with these less than favorable conditions, people from Britain, Scandinavia, China, Ireland, and Germany are coming to America due to push-pull factors.


Push-pull factors either push someone out of the country or pull them into them into the US. Push factors include : Population growth, agricultural change, crop failure, industrial revolution, religious or political turmoil. With cities over expanding in Europe there is no room for more people. As bigger landowners bought small farms, farmers came to America. With crop failure like the potato famine in Ireland, America was a good choice. People came for the promise of change in the US, like the industrial revolution. Finally, people came to escape the problems of their home country. Pull factors include : freedom, abundant land, and economic opportunity. America being a free country attracted many people along with the US providing a chance for a new life with cheap land and a better economy for the common man.

Scandinavian and German Immigration By: Claire S

Scandinavians and Germans are flocking to America for economic opportunity and cheap land. Scandinavians are coming to America in search of cheap land, as in the US an acre is worth $1.25. The Scandinavians are settling in the Midwest, especially Wisconsin and Minnesota to be close to their roots with the similar climate and available farm land. While the Swedish government and clergy are trying to fight their decreasing numbers, they cannot compete with the pull of the land of the free. The Swedish government passed a law in 1768 to limit emigration, but wwe large poverty levels, the law was canceled in 1840. Clergy tried to contribute to the movement of staying at home by warning their followers but soon gave up when their words affected little. The Scandinavians are now prospering through farming in the US.


Germans are also coming to the US, but in much higher numbers. Germans are coming to America for economic opportunity. Germans are also settling in the Midwest, particularly Wisconsin for the similar climate to farm the German specialty, oats. They also have taken an interest to Milwaukee due to the German Catholic Bishop. Germans also have been settling in Texas and are prospering despite trouble with native americans and measly harvests. No matter where the Germans settle, they are making waves in the field of craftsmanship. Many German Americans are having great success through their skilled artisans and businesses. With so many German immigrants their culture is beginning to become mainstream American culture.

Irish Immigration By: Claire S

By 1845, 2 million Irish immigrants had flooded the borders of the US. The Irish have a very large presence in port cities such as Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, as Irish immigrants make up 25% of the population. These immigrants have come over with little money, few skills, and low education. The Irish are currently competing with free African Americans for labor jobs. Irish woman are servants, while the men are canal and railroad workers. Thousands of Irish men die doing these dangerous jobs, and face persecution everyday.


The largest growing population of immigrants, the Irish, fled their homeland for religious freedom and to escape crop failure. In the early 1800s, many Irish immigrants fled their native land due to religious intolerance. As Ireland is ruled by Protestant Britain, the Catholic Irish face discrimination. They were denied many rights, such as voting, holding office, owning land, or education. Secondly, the Irish came to America after the potato famine. In 1845, a disease that affected and ruined the main food source, potatoes, led to a food shortage. This food shortage and the lack of money and rights, led to one million Irish dying.

Cities after Immigration By: Claire S

With Millions of Immigrants coming to America, US cities are reaching an overflow point where we cannot handle the amount of people in the country. As the population as a whole rises quickly, the population of cities is rising at an alarming rate. From 1800 to 1830 New York’s population has risen 335%. Cities like Cincinnati and St. Louis have had their population double in less than ten years. This overcrowding leads to many problems, but most disquieting, crime. With no public police source, crime flourishes in urban neighborhoods. Politicians are trying to help by making helping immigrants and the city situation priority. While politicians are setting up aid center, so are other immigrants, in an attempt to help their own.


Crime is not the only issue due to overcrowding in cities. With the surge in population, the cities are over filling. There is a shortage in housing and sewers. As the cities try to squeeze in as many people as possible, some living quarters are anything but safe and sanitary. Apartment complexes squeezed into small space lead to some areas having no sunlight or fresh air. Sewers overflow and spread disease. One example is New York City, which has 500 miles of streets and only 138 miles of sewers. As the US tries to grow with its growing population, immigrants suffer.

Opposition to Immigration By: Claire S

Even with large numbers, many immigrants faced persecution and opposition from native born Americans. This group is called Nativists, they fear immigrants will not be able to adopt American culture or out number the Nativists. They will not hire immigrants, hold rallies, and refuse to elect immigrants or Catholics. One example of this is a rally held in Philadelphia in 1844, where non-Catholics, most likely Protestants, killed many Catholics. Nativists believed Catholics threatened democracy because they followed one leader alone, the Pope. As the Nativists aimed to eliminate foreign influence, they would take it farther to politics.


Nativists took their agenda another step forward by founding their own political party to oppose Catholics and immigrants. With prejudice in mind, the Know-Nothing party was formed. This secret society was named this because when asked, a member would ‘know nothing’. This party had underground meetings and actually got 6 governors elected. They aimed to eliminate immigration and put 21 year waiting period to become an American citizen. Eventually the party fell apart due to the differing views on the topic of slavery. Even with setbacks, immigrants are thriving in the US.

Impact of Religion By: Shaelyn G

The biggest impact of religion is happening right now! Between the late 1790s to now, the early 1800s, what we call the Second Great Awakening is occurring. This is the renewal of religious faith. One idea that’s being widely taught is that anyone can choose salvation. Salvation is deliverance from sins and its consequences, or being saved from harm, ruin, or loss. Many Revivalist preachers are appealing to equality-loving and fair Americans, and settlers all wish to visit them. The revival ideas spread quickly. One famous preacher at the moment is Peter Cartwright. He was only 16 when he started his religious journey and has recovered from his dark past of gambling through faith and salvation. He claims he soon quit, after joining the Methodist Church community. He became a minister and has been preaching for over 60 years. Although the revival is hugely impacting the frontier, it is also traveling to the East. An Eastern religious example is a former lawyer, Charles Grandison Finney. He has been holding many meetings and has taught many lessons. His biggest idea he preaches about is that all sin consists of selfishness and religious faith leads people to help others. Finney, Cartwright, and many others have “awakened” a spirit of reformation. Americans are believing their actions could make things better.


Imporving Society and Workers' Rights By: Claire S

Lately, new movements have been growing to improve society and life in the US. One of these movements is the temperance movement, to ban alcohol. This movement is particularly supported by American women and business owners. They are fighting the disquieting issue of alcoholism. Men are spending most of their wages on alcohol and not supporting their families. While men also come home drunk, they drink on the job and cannot function at work either. This movement became major through plays, pamphlets, and petitions. By 1838, the petition to give up alcohol had a million signatures. Supporters believe alcohol is sin that leads men into temptation and it should be made illegal. Presently, 14 states have banned the sale of alcohol. Maine being the first in 1851.


Another movement that has been particularly boisterous is the worker’s rights movement. In the 1830s, Americans began to organize and fight against the unfair conditions of factory work. While work could be loud and boring, it was also unsafe. Machines were dangerous, children and adults worked from sun up to sun down on low wages. The first official labor union was formed by a workers in a mill in Massachusetts. The young women in Lowell, Massachusetts banded together and demanded better working conditions. In response the the mill owners raised the cost of living for the women. 1,500 women then went on strike, and would lead the way for other strikes to come. From 1835 to 1836, 140 strikes took place in the US. The movement slowed down with the declining economy. Workers did not want to be fired in hard times, but they did accomplish some things, such as a ten hour work day, signed in by Martin Van Buren in 1940.

Improving Education and Help for the Needy By: Tori K

Recently, Americans have been demanding better education and help for the needy. This past year, Massachusetts has set up the first board of education in the United States. The head of the board is Horace Mann who is currently arguing that education is one of the key treasures that people should possess. It is anticipated that within the next decade, many northern states will open up public elementary schools and that private schools will open up numerous colleges. Also, women are starting to come into the picture of being able to go to college. The newly founded Oberlin College in Ohio, will become the first college to accept women and men into their school. These steps will help our country’s education grow as a whole, and create a brighter future for our children.

Another hotly talked about topic is improving help for the needy. A woman named Dorothea Dix is speaking up for improving the living conditions for women in jails. Since teaching Sunday school at a women’s jail, Dix noticed that the living conditions most women lived in were inhumane. Shockingly, Dix discovered that most of the women in the jail were there because they were mentally ill. After visiting other jails, Dix discovered that the mentally ill received no treatments and were beaten badly. After Dix’s findings, she is demanding change to come and for jails to treat their prisoners better. Also, there have been discussions for starting a special school for the blind and a special school for the deaf. These little steps to improving our education and helping the needy will make America a prosperous country that is able to help people of all ages and all special conditions.

Calls to End Slavery By: Michael M

Abolitionists Wanting To End Slavery


Most Northern states have already outlawed slavery, and it was now illegal to import them. People like David Walker, and William Lloyd went against slavery, but David ended up dying, and William was almost killed by an angry mob. A couple of Southerners even thought slavery was morally wrong. They sent petitions to Congress about slavery. Slavery supporters in Congress tried to pass gag rules to prevent the petitions from being read, but John Quincy Adams ignored them. He came up with an amendment to end slavery, but it did not pass. He also defended slaves in court.


Personal View Of Slavery


Frederick Douglass and Sojourner Truth used their own experience of slavery, to try and convince people how bad slavery is. Douglass spread his ideas through public speaking. He was so good at it, that he got a job in Massachusetts to tell about Anti-Slavery. He fled America for two years in fear that his owner might recapture him, but came back free. Truth fled as a slave to the Quakers, who set her free. She got her name changed to Sojourner Truth to match her life’s work.


The Underground Railroad


Some people helped slaves escape through an aboveground escape route to the north called the Underground Railroad. Slaves travelled on foot, or by wagon, boat, or train. One slave named Henry Brown convinced a carpenter to mail him north in a box. He then helped work at the Underground Railroad. Runaways travelled at night, and at day hid in places called stations. These stations were provided by Anti-Slavery supporters.


Harriet Tubman


Conductors, like Harriet Tubman, helped lead slaves to freedom. Harriet Tubman escaped her slave owner at age 13, when she learned she would be sold. She made 19 journeys to free other slaves, including her parents. Her enemies hated her so much, they offered $40,000 for her capture.

Women's Rights By: Claire S

In these changing times, another group is changing the way they are perceived by the general public. This group is women, as more groups are getting more rights, women are beginning to demand them too. This movement got its take off while women were working for a different cause, liberation of slaves in America. Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton attended an Anti-Slavery conference in London, 1840. They entered to speak in the conference, but were not allowed to s men claimed it was not a woman’s place to speak publicly. They also had to sit behind a curtain to listen to male speakers. Outraged, the women decided to take change into their own hands and decided to hold a women’s rights conference back in the US.

Fed up with the lack of rights, Stanton and Mott held the Seneca Falls Convention on July 19th and 20th, 1848. The convention drew 300 men and women to discuss reforms to give more rights for women. They spoke about their complaints and wrote the Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions. Every issue won unanimously, besides for the right to vote. Elizabeth Stanton and Frederick Douglass fought for the right to vote, or suffrage, saying that it would bring respect and additional rights along with it. Suffrage won by a slim margin after much debate.


Along with Mott and Stanton, three other women are making waves in the fight for equality. These women are Sojourner Truth, Maria Mitchell, and Susan B. Anthony. Sojourner Truth spoke for women’s right along with abolition at a conference in Ohio. Her speech won a standing ovation and influenced how people thought about equality. Maria Mitchell was a skilled scientist and astronomer who helped the Association for the Advancement of Women. Finally, Susan B. anthony organized the movement and made it respectable. She supported the rights for married women to have control of their own wages and property. All these women pushed towards reforms that shaped the outlook for the rights of all. Women Suffrage is still not accomplished, but will be soon, hopefully.