The American Journey © 2007

Chapter 8: A New Nation

Web Lesson Plans

In this chapter students read about the early years of the United States. Although President George Washington warned of the dangers of political parties in his Farewell Address, it was too late. Many Americans had already chosen sides. The first political parties, the Federalist and the Democratic-Republican, had already been formed.

Lesson Description
Students will visit the Treasures of Congress Web page from the National Archives Web site. They will select the topic on early political parties and will read excerpts from letters as well as a voting record from Congress. The page allows students to see images of the original documents and political cartoons as well as read their transcriptions.

Instructional Objectives
  1. The learner will be able to interact with original documents and assess their meaning.
  2. The learner will be able to name important leaders of the Federalist and Democratic-Republican Parties.
  3. The learner will be able to describe important events in the history of the Federalist and Democratic-Republican Parties.
Student Web Activity Answers
  1. The Federalists were identified with President George Washington in the early 1790s.
  2. Answers may include Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, John Jay, Fisher Ames, and Rufus King.
  3. The Democratic-Republican party emphasized state’s rights as opposed to a strong centralized government. In foreign policy it favored France over Britain. This web site describes conflict over foreign affairs. The party was opposed to appointing Chief Justice Jay to negotiate a treaty with Britain in order to keep the United States out of the war between France and Britain.
  4. Answers may include Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, Albert Gallatin, and Aaron Burr.
  5. Jefferson states that in the past, gentlemen could keep their debates in the Senate separate from their interactions with each other outside the Senate. He seems to suggest that was no longer the case. Students could infer that, in Jefferson’s opinion, political debate and disagreement were impacting private life.
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