American History Essay

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Chapter 1: A brief history I. American territory and expansion - First discovery of America: The first Europeans to reach North America were Icelandic Viking, led by Leif Ericson about the year 100. Traces of their visit have been found in the Canadian province of Newfoundland but the Viking failed to establish a permanent settlement and soon lost contact with the new continent. - The purchase of Louisiana: 1803, The third US President purchased the vast Louisiana Territory from France which added more 2 million square km of territory and extended the country’s borders as far west as the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. - The Western expansion: In the span of five years, the United States increased its size by a third. It annexed Texas in 1845; negotiated with Britain for half of the Oregon country; and acquired California, Nevada, Utah, and parts of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming as a result of a war with Mexico. America’s dramatic territorial expansion intensified the sectional conflict between North and South and raised the fateful and ultimately divisive issue of whether slavery would be allowed in the western territories. - Mexican War, or the U.S.–Mexican War, was an armed conflict between the United States of America and Mexico from 1846 to 1848 in the wake of the 1845 U.S. annexation of Texas, which Mexico considered part of its territory despite the 1836 Texas Revolution. American forces quickly occupied New Mexico and California, then invaded parts of Northeastern Mexico and Northwest Mexico; meanwhile, the Pacific Squadron conducted a blockade, and took control of several garrisons on the Pacific coast further south in Baja California. After Mexico would still not agree to the cession of its northern territories, another American army captured Mexico, and the war ended in victory of the U.S. - The French and Indian War

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