United States History Essay Sample

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Directions: The following question requires you to construct a coherent essay that integrates your interpretation of Documents 1-7 and your knowledge of the period referred to in the question. High scores will be earned only by essays that both cite key pieces of evidence from the documents and draw on outside knowledge of the period.

I.In what ways did the French and Indian War (1754-63) alter the political, economic and ideological relations between Britain and its American colonies?

Use the documents and your knowledge of the period 1740-1766 in constructing your response.

Source: Canassatego, Chief of the Onondaga Nation of the Iroquois Confederacy, speech to representatives of Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia, 1742. We know our Lands are now become more valuable. The white People think we do not know their Value: but we are sensible that the Land is everlasting, and the few Goods we receive for it are soon worn out and gone …. We are not well used with respect to the lands still unsold by us. Your People daily settle on these Lands, and spoil our Hunting. We must insist on your Removing them, as you know they have no Right to settle.

Source: George Washington, letter to Robert Orme, aide-de-camp to General Edward Braddock, March 15, 1755. It is true Sir, that I have. . expressed an Inclination to serve the ensuing Campaigne as a Volunteer; and this inclination is not a little increased since it is likely to be conducted by a Gentleman of the General’s Experience. But, besides this and the laudable desire I may have to serve (with my best abilities) my King & Country, I must be ingenuous enough to confess, that I am not a little biased by selfish considerations. To be plain, Sir, I wish earnestly to attain some knowledge of the Military Profession: and, believing a more favourable opportunity cannot offer, than to serve under a Gentleman of General Braddock’s abilities and experience.

Source: Massachusetts soldier’s diary, 1759.

September 30. Cold weather is coming on apace, which will make us look round about us and put [on] our winter clothing, and we shall stand in need of good liquors [in order] to keep our spirits on cold winter’s days. And we, being here within stone walls, are not likely to get liquors or clothes at this time of the year; and though we be Englishmen born, we are debarred [denied] Englishmen’s liberty. Therefore we now see what it is to be under martial law and to be with the [British] regulars, who are but little better than slaves to their officers. And when I get out of their [power] I shall take care of how I get in again.

[October] 31. And so now our time has come to an end according to enlistment, but we are not yet [allowed to go] home.

November 1. The regiment was ordered out… to hear what the colonel had to say to them as our time was out and we all swore that we would do no more duty here. So it was a day of much confusion with the regiment.

Source: Rev. Thomas Barnard, sermon. Massachusetts, 1763.

Auspicious Day! when Britain, the special Care of Heaven, blessed with a patriot-Sovereign. served by wise and faithful Councellors, brave Commanders, successful Fleets and Armies, seconded in her Efforts by all her Children, and by none more zealously than by those of New England…America, mayest well rejoice. the Children of New England may be glad and triumph, in Reflection on Events past, and Prospect for the future.

Now commences the Era of our quiet Enjoyment of those Liberties which our Fathers purchased with the Toil of their whole Lives, their Treasure, their Blood. Safe from the Enemy of the Wilderness, safe from the gripping Hand of arbitrary Sway and cruel Superstition, here shall be the late founded Seat of Peace and Freedom. Here shall our indulgent Mother, who has most generously rescued and protected us, be served and honored by growing Numbers, with all Duty, Love and Gratitude, till Time shall be no more. Document 6.

Source: British Order in Council. 1763.

We the Commissioners of your Majesty’s Treasury beg leave humbly to represent to your Majesty that having taken into consideration the present state of the duties of customs imposed on your Majesty’s subjects in America and the West Indies, we find that the revenue arising therefrom is very small and inconsiderable, . . . and is not yet sufficient to defray a fourth part of the expense necessary for collecting it. We observe with concern that through neglect, connivance, and fraud, not only is revenue impaired, but the commerce of the colonies diverted from its natural course… [This revenue] is more indispensable when the military establishment necessary for maintaining these colonies requires a large revenue to support it, and when their vast increase in territory and population makes the proper regulation of their trade of immediate necessity.

Source: Benjamin Franklin (in London) letter to John Hughs (in Pennsylvania), August 9, 3765.

As to the Stamp Act, tho we purpose [propose] doing our Endeavour to get it repeal’d in which I am sure you would concur with us, yet the Success is uncertain. If it continues, your undertaking to execute it may make you unpopular for a Time, but your Coolness and Steadiness, and with every Circumstance in your Power of Favour to the People, will by degrees reconcile them. In the meantime, a firm Loyalty to the Crown and faithful Adherence to the Government of this Nation, which it is the Safety as well as Honour of the Colonies to be connected with, will always be the wisest Course for you and I to take.

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