Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

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America's History in the Making

The New Nation

Theme 2

White women, free blacks, slaves, yeoman farmers, and others sought their own place in the new nation.

The American Revolution excited the hopes of subsistence yeoman farmers, African Americans, and white women. In the decades following the war, these people—at the political margins of the young nation—continued to push for more political power, even as conservatives opposed them. Struggling farmers commonly asserted that federal leaders were repeating the abuses of England by taxing and otherwise interfering in the lives of independent-minded citizens. The Constitution did not challenge slavery, but the institution waned in the North, where increasing numbers of free African Americans created their own communities. White women remained members of male-dominated households, a condition that only a few explicitly criticized, although more favored expanded social and political roles for white women.

Primary Sources

Texts

Text Artifact

Excerpted from The Gleaner

Judith Sargent Murray, The Gleaner, Number XXXV: Sentiments on Education (1792-94) (Schenectady, N.Y.: Union College Press, 1992) 287-88.


Artifacts

Return from a Boarding School

Unknown, RETURN FROM A BOARDING SCHOOL (1802). Analectic Magazine, November 1802.

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