History; Abraham Lincoln

History; Abraham Lincoln

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History 1101                                                                                                               Summer 2016

Midterm Exam Pt.II, Book Essay                                                                          Roger Baldwin


Instructions:  Using George McGovern’s Abraham Lincoln, write an essay (5-page minimum) that answersall of the following questions:


  1. What professional and political experience did Abraham Lincoln accumulate before becoming President? (Ch.1—Humble Beginnings; Ch.2—Making of a Statesman)


  1. What was the Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854) and Dred Scott decision (1857)? Why did they bring Lincoln out of private life and “rekindle” (p.37) his political career? (Ch. 2—Making of a Statesman, esp. pp.36-40)


  1. What arguments did Lincoln make against southern secession? In what ways did he repress civil liberties during the war and otherwise “stretch the limits of presidential authority” (p.62)?  (Ch.3—Lincoln and the Union, esp. pp.48-49, 55-56, 61-63)


  1. McGovern states that the Emancipation Proclamation “transformed the meaning of the war and redefined…the notion of freedom in America” (p.64). What was Lincoln’s early attitudes toward slavery and racial equality?  On what grounds did he justify emancipation?  (Ch.4—Lincoln and Emancipation, esp. pp.66-68, 70-71)


  1. McGovern states that Lincoln began the Civil War advocating “limited war” but later replaced it with “total war” (pp.80-81). What does he mean by these?  How did Generals Ulysses S Grant and William Sherman implement the policy of total warfare?  (Ch.5—Lincoln and Total War, esp. pp.80-81, 87, 92-96)


  1. What major domestic reforms were passed during Lincoln’s 1st and 2nd terms? (Ch. 7—Rising Above the Fray, pp.119-122)

Further Instructions:

  1. Your essay must be typed and double-spaced.
  2. Use Question-Answer format (that’s 6 short essays).
  3. Use quotes and page citations (essays that don’t will be graded down).
  4. Your essay must be a minimum of five pages (one page = roughly 24 lines of essay).
  • There is no maximum limit on how much you can write. A-range essays are usually substantially longer.  Write lots!
  1. All answers must come from the McGovern biography. Don’t use outside sources.
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