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1. What issues divided the Whigs and Democrats? How did the Panic of 1837 and its aftermath solidify the Democratic and Whig parties? How did the massive immigration of the 1840s influence the balance of power between the Whig and Democratic parties?
2. In what ways did the concept of Manifest Destiny affect the foreign and domestic policies of the US in the years 1840-1850? What economic and political forces fed westward expansion during the 1840s?
3. Why did Americans settle in Texas? How did it become an independent country in 1836?
4. Why did the U.S. wait until Tyler’s final days in office to annex Texas? What problems did the annexation of Texas bring to the country?
5. What were the countries that claimed the Oregon territory? How was the dispute eventually settled?
6. What were the arguments that both sides employed for and against going to war with Mexico?
7. How did the acquisition of the Mexican Cession spark a national debate?
8. To what extent did the Compromise of 1850 represent a genuine meeting of the minds between northerners and southerners? How, specifically, did the controversy over enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Act contribute to the undoing of the Compromise?
9. Why did the Whig Party collapse in the wake of the Kansas-Nebraska Act? Why did the Democratic Party not collapse?
10. How did the outbreak of conflict in Kansas influence the rise of the Republican Party?
11. Why is John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry considered a significant historical event?
12. What led southerners to conclude that the North was bent not merely on restricting territorial slavery but also on extinguishing slavery in southern states?
13. What was the platform of each party in the election of 1860? Why did Lincoln win?
14. How would YOU explain the causes of the Civil War?

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