United States to 1877

Spring 2007 -- Section 231001


Dr. Bob Wettemann

Office:  Old Main 207

Office Hours: MW 9:00-12:00; T 9:00-12:00, or by appointment

Phone:  793-3864 or 677-6640 (emergencies only)

Email:  rwettemann@mcm.edu

    Course Objectives
    Required Readings
    Graded Exercises
    Class Policies
    Lecture Topics, Assigned Readings and Important Dates:
    Wettemann's Guide to Writing Book Reviews

This course emphasizes the relevant cultural, political, military, economic and religious developments in North America and later the United States, from the pre-Columbian era through Reconstruction.  While names and dates are important, this course will not be centered upon rote memorization.  Rather, it will be based upon critical analysis, consideration of major trends, and cause and effect.

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REQUIRED READINGS: There are four (4) required books:
Murrin, Liberty, Equality and Power (hereafter referred to as LEP)
Bowen, Miracle at Philadelphia
Oates,  The Fires of Jubilee
Sutherland, The Emergence of Total War

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A total of 500 points will be offered throughout the course of the semester.

GRADE SCALE: Grades will be determined on the following scale, developed in accordance with the McMurry University Course Catalog. 


465-500 points






















less than 300 points

Graded assignments and exercises will include:

Examinations: There will be three exams:  two in-class exams during the course of the semester and a final. The first two exams will be worth 100 points each, and the final will be worth 150.  Exams will be based upon lectures, material from LEP, and any class discussions. , but will also have an essay component based upon Sutherland, The Emergence of Total War. You will need to new, pristine blue book  (available in the bookstore) for each exam.

Book Reviews:  During the course of the semester, you will be writing two book reviews, one critically analyzing the content of Bowen’s Miracle at Philadelphia and one critically analyzing Oates, The Fires of Jubilee. Each review will be due at the end of class on the date specified in the "Lecture Topics, Assigned Readings, and Important Dates."  Each review will be worth 50 points, and you are strongly encouraged to meet with the professor to discuss the comments offered on the first review so that you may improve your grade on the second review.  Guidelines for this review are provided in "Wettemann's Guide to Writing Book Reviews," available online at <http://mail.mcm.edu/~wettemar/reviewguide.html>  

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ASSIGNED SEATING: A seating chart will be circulated at the beginning of week 2.  You are requested to remain in the assigned seats for the remainder of the semester.

PREPARATION: You are strongly encouraged to attend each class having read the assigned readings and completed all assignments. You are also requested to obtain all necessary exam forms in advance of the test. Exams start promptly at 8:00, and late arrivals (especially those who were at the bookstore waiting for it to open) will be penalized.

MISSED EXAMS and MAKE-UP ASSIGNMENTS: Any student requesting a make-up for an exam must present a note from a physician, a university approved excuse, or other appropriate documentation.  All make-up examinations will be taken within one week after the student's return to class.

LATE ASSIGNMENTS: Late book reviews will be penalized 5 points per calendar day, with the first deduction taken after class on the appropriate due date.  Thus, if the paper is not turned in until the next day after class, there is a 10 point deduction. Weekends count in the calculation for deductions.  If you plan to be absent on a university sponsored activity the day that the paper is due, you must turn your paper prior to your departure or suffer the same penalties.  Late reviews due to illness will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY:  All work for this class must be a product of the student's own effort. Cheating will not be tolerated in any form.  Evidence of cheating by the use of illicit notes, crib sheets, or any other means will result in automatic failure of the class.

PLAGIARISM:  Even if someone gives you permission to submit their work as your own, or if you present another's work as your own text without quotation marks, and proper citation, that is plagiarism.  If you have not done so already, consult the "Plagiarism" section of the McMurry History Department Style Manual.  Plagiarism will be neither tolerated nor accepted, and any evidence of it will result in automatic failure of the class.

ELECTRONIC DEVICES: Other than tape recorders and calculators, the use of electronic devices (cellular phones, personal pagers, flash photography, etc.) is prohibited in the classroom without prior permission of the instructor.

STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES:  McMurry University abides by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which stipulates that no otherwise qualified student shall be denied the benefits of an education “solely by reason of a handicap.”  If you have a documented disability that may impact your performance in this class and for which you may require accommodations, you must be registered with and provide documentation of your disability to the Disability Services Office, located in Old Main, Room 102.

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Week 1 -- Columbus to the Colonies, LEP, ch. 1-2

Week 2 -- Colonial Development, LEP, ch. 3 Road to Empire, LEP, ch. 3-4

Week 3 – Life in the Empire, LEP, ch. 4

Week 4 – The Road to Independence, LEP, ch. 5

Review of Bowen, Miracle at Philadelphia, due on February 9

Week 5 – The American Revolution, LEP, ch. 6

Exam I, February 16

Week 6 – First Political Party system, LEP ch. 7

Week 7 – Securing the Republic, LEP, ch. 8

Review of Oates, Fires of Jubilee, due on March 9

Week 8 – The Era of Good Feelings, ch. 11


Week 9 – The Market Revolution, ch. 9

Week 10 – The Jacksonian Era, ch. 12

Week 11 – Expansion and Manifest Destiny, ch. 13

Good Friday/Pretty Swell Monday

Week 12 – Antebellum America, ch. 10

Exam II, April 4

Week 13 – The Sectional Struggle, ch. 14

Week 14 – The Civil War, ch. 15-16

Week 15 – Reconstruction, ch. 17

Final Exam – Wednesday, May 9, 8:00 a.m.

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Exam I Review            Exam II Review                     Final Exam Review