1 to 1 1/2 page per question
United States History Survey
Winter Quarter, 2022
Like the first exam, this is a 200 point test; I will divide your score by two to convert your grade to the 100 point scale.
However, the rest of the format is different from the first exam. There are five mandatory essays, each worth 40 points. Simply complete each essay. While there is no minimum or maximum length for an essay,
each one will probably take you between one and two pages.
The books and classes to consult for these questions are
Shorto, Russell. The Island at the Center of the World. This work takes advantage of recently re-discovered archives of the Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam to describe the multi-cultural foundations of the future city of New York.
Philbrick Nathaniel. Mayflower: Voyage, Community and War. New York, New York: Penguin Press, 2020 Revised Edition. Philbrick’s theme is the gradual souring of the relationship between Indigenous Americans and the Plymouth Colony. He is particularly challenging to the myth that a lasting harmony between the two groups may be symbolized by the first Thanksgiving.
McLoughlin, William G. Rhode Island: A History. New York, New York: WW Norton, 1986. The major themes of American history as measured through the experience of one small state.
Heffner, Richard D. and Alexander, editors. A Documentary History of the United States. Penguin USA, 2013 edition. This is a collection of important speeches, laws and pamphlets from American life since the establishment of the Republic in 1776.
1. There are three major colonies to consider in this part of the course: Dutch New Netherland, Plymouth and Rhode Island. Compare the policies of the three regarding religious toleration and freedom of speech.
2. Explain how the alliance between the Plymouth settlers and the Pokanokets was formed. How was it in the self-interest of each partner in the alliance? How did the alliance eventually collapse? Discuss the rival visions of Josiah Winslow and Benjamin Church for replacing the failed alliance. Why is Philbrick so disappointed in Winslow’s vision?
3. McLoughlin believes that Anne Hutchinson and the settlement she helped to found in Rhode Island had a theological outlook that produced good business entrepreneurship and initiative. How so? Does this mean that Rhode Island rivalled New York State as a founding place for American business?
4. Describe the visions of Adrian van Der Donck and Peter Stuyvesant for New Netherland. Why does Shorto believe that each figure was essential for the colony’s success, despite their sharp differences? How did the combination of the two show the complexity of early modern Dutch culture in its religious, political and intellectual aspects?
5. Considering the foreign policy documents of Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt in Heffner we see that each believed his policies in the colonial past of America. How well did each of these two really know that history? And then consider the debate between Andrew Carnegie and Walt Whitman about the arts: would that have been possible without the New Netherland legacy?
Inquiry Seminar in the Humanities
Fr. Thomas Murphy, S.J., Department of History.
Winter Quarter, 2015
Discussion Topics for Class of Monday, February 9, 2015.
Ward, “Prologue: The River Road,” pp. 1-12.
pp. 1-3, in 1934, FDR resents lobbying for his eventual burial at the Washington National Cathedral and lays down instructions for his burial to actually take place at his estate “Springwood” in Hyde Park, New York along the Hudson River Valley; pp. 3-11, description of his actual funeral there after his death in office in April, 1945; pp. 11-12, author Ward’s conviction that while FDR’s personality is very much a riddle, the place to begin a search for understanding him is this very Hyde Park that meant so much to him.
Ward, Chapter One, “Mr. James,” pp. 13-60.
pp. 13-16, description of how FDR’s father, James Roosevelt, known as “Mr. James” to his servants, purchased and remodeled the estate at Hyde Park along with his first wife Rebecca in 1867 following the burning down of their earlier Hudson Valley estate, Mount Hope; pp. 16-21, author Ward summarizes the family history of Mr. James’ branch of the Roosevelts, describing their comparatively late arrival in the Hudson Valley in 1818, their family wealth rooted in Manhattan real estate, dry goods and West Indian sugar, their long record of intermarriage with highborn colonial families of both Dutch and English origin, the life of the Federalist and Revolutionary War era ancestor Isaac Roosevelt the Patriot, their comfort in genteel Knickerbocker society, their lack of comfort with the boisterous character of post-revolutionary NYC, the younger, reclusive Isaac the doctor and his marriage into the Yankee whaling and clipper ship dynasty the Aspinwalls’, whose ties to the Howland family introduces Mayflower ancestry into FDR’s genealogy; pp. 21-23, early life of Mr. James (whose father was Isaac the doctor), including his education as the tolerant Collegiate School in Poughkeepsie, New York, the strict Yankee Hyde School in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, and the practical, reform oriented Union College in Schnectady, New York., his grand tour of the Middle East and Europe with its alleged brief flirtation with Garibaldi’s Italian freedom fighters, his time at Harvard Law School and his early business and legal ventures; pp. 33-37, Mr. James’ first marriage to Rebecca Howland, his association with the American minister to Great Britain and future President James Buchanan, the birth of FDR’s much older half brother “Rosie” Roosevelt, Mr. James hard-to-document and elusive role in the Civil War and its comparison with the record of TR, Senior; pp.37-42, Mr. James’s second grand tour of Europe, right after the Civil War, shows how the family was capable of being cosmopolitan and parochial at one and the same time, as well as revealing Mr. James strong desire to imitate the lifestyle and values of the English country aristocracy; p 42-49, the family’s period in residence in Dresden, Germany, with its friendship between Mr. James and Civil War general and defeated Democratic presidential nominee George B. McClellan, gives author Ward an opening to discuss Mr. James’ switch from Whig to Democrat, which might have taken place when his friend Buchanan ran for President in 1856 and which reveals Mr. James’ preference for political moderation; pp. 49-54, Mr. James returns to NY State and shows an English preference for the countryside, regarding NYC as a necessary evil for his business ties but Springwood at Hyde Park as home; pp. 54-57, business investments , touring Europe with the energetic TR clan, illness and death of first wife Rebecca; pp. 57-60, Mr. James’ failed courtship of Bamie Roosevelt, the sister of future President TR, Jr. nonetheless leads to Mittie Roosevelt, Bamie’s mother, introducing Mr. James to his future second wife and FDR’s own mother, Sara Delano, at Mittie’s NYC townhouse.
Ward, Chapter Two, “Algonac,” pp. 61-108.
pp. 61-62, introduction of Sara as regal, reserved and substantive, traits she demonstrated in a newsreel made of her in Paris during her son’s Presidency; pp. 62-63, Sara visits Hyde Park soon after meeting Mr. James, chaperoned by the women of the TR Roosevelt family; pp. 63-65, Mr. James overcomes objections about the age difference between him and Sara., who is the same age as his son, and persuades her demanding father Warren Delano II to let them marry in 1880; pp. 65-67, summary of Delano family history going back to Plymouth Rock, where French Huguenot Philippe de la Noye married an English Pilgrim in the 1630’s, with the clan eventually settling in Fairhaven, Massachusetts (near whaling port of New Bedford); pp. 67-70, when Warren II expressed an interest in a maritime career his father, Warren I, discouraged actually going to sea and pushed the business side of things, leading the son into the China trade; pp. 70-78, Warren II’s complicity in the opium trade, which his descendants became very secretive about; pp. 78-81, Warren II marries Catherine Robbins Lyman of the intellectually but not economically rich Lyman family of Northampton, Massachusetts, friend of John Quincy Adams, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson and first takes her to China, then to the Hudson Valley upon their return; pp. 82-83, Warren II hires architect Andrew Jackson Downing to design the new Delano family estate at Algonac, pursuing that architect’s ideal of “accessible perfect seclusion” and revealing a Delano desire to seal things off from the world when possible; pp. 83-85, Delano children are brought up never to complain, never discuss bad news, never demonstrate fear or alarm even when feeling those emotions, and to keep meticulous records of the family history (for after all, as Delanos they were by nature important); pp. 85-87, the xenophobia and intense clannishness on display at Fairhaven, where Warren I is in residence at the ancestral home; pp. 87-90, the economic depression of the late 1850’s nearly costs Warren II his fortune (endangering even his ownership of Algonac) and forces him to return to China without his family in 1860; pp. 92-94, after he recovers some fortune Warren II send for the family and Sara spends three years of her childhood in China, but within a family enclave for the most part; pp. 94-97, after a period in Fairhaven Sara is sent to Europe and has long stays in Dresden and Paris; pp. 97-102, life back at Algonac from 1870, where Sara demonstrates an intense desire to please her father; pp. 102-104, Sara’s failed relationship with Stanford White leaves her an unusually old unmarried woman by the standards of her time, and reveals that she has inherited both her mother’s desire to please and her father’s fiercely independent will, leaving her conflicted about her future; pp. 104-105, her ultimate marriage to Mr. James may have reflected her seeing some traits of her father in him, and also meant that she would continue to reside in the Hudson Valley; pp. 105-108, in any case their early marriage showed that emotionally Sara remained very much a Delano (she would later insist that FDR was much more a Delano than a Roosevelt) and Mr. James found himself very much subsumed into the Delano clan, although we don’t really know his reaction to that fact.