US History- launching the new nationWhat are the best or most important events in the section that I should take note of? Key terms, important people and dates, stuff like that

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One very important theme is Individualism; the Founders took stock of every existing political system and noted the one thing that never worked: the absolute power of the rulers. To allow the people to have a say in government, they modified the Democratic systems of nations past to be representative in the best sense of the word; we the people, although we are not rich or of noble blood, have the right to speak and act in our own behalf. The Declaration of Independence and Constitution contain one of the strongest arguments for individual rights and responsibilities in the world. It took a while to get real equality of race and gender, but that was a product of the time, and the Founders foresaw that times and customs would change, and gave our government the tools to effect that change.

(Note that "Liberalism" in its traditional sense is not the same as the ideology of "liberalism" that exists today.)

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The key events of the new nation must certainly include the following;

1. The road to revolution-from 1763 through 1776

2. The Revolutionary War 1776- through the Treaty of Paris 1783

3. The Articles of Confederation 1781-1789

4. The Constitutional Convention 1787 to revise the Articles but ended up drafting a new document incorporating compromises

5. The new document- The United States Constitution

6. Its ratification process- which was not an easy task and divided the people into two groups, the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. The beginning of political parties in the United States.

7. The adoption of the first ten amendments to the Constitution- The Bill of Rights- cornerstone to American civil liberties.

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Americans really value the founding fathers. I think that looking at them and their lives makes an interesting approach to the study of American history. Although we Romanticize them, it gives us insight into the ideals that America tries to live up to.
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