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Carla Gerona
Survey of American History: US History to Civil War
History 1301 Sec 009
TR 11-12:15 PM , JO 4.614
Office hours: T: 2-3 or by appointment. Jo 5.612
Phone : (972)-883-6354
E-mail: cgerona@utdallas.edu

Teaching Assistant: Pia Katarina Jakobsson

Office hours: Th 2-3 and by appointment. Jo 5.206, ext. 2095
Email: pkj010100@utdallas.edu Web: http://www.utdallas.edu/~pkj010100

This is an introduction to the study of American history from the beginnings through the
American Civil War – or the foundational period of U.S. history. This course will focus
on the ways in which different peoples came together to create America. We will begin
with Native America and look at early encounters with Europeans and Africans. Then we
will explore the ways in which early Americans built colonies, provinces, and eventually,
the independent United States. Next we turn to developments and problems in the first
half of the 1800s, concluding with a study of the Civil War.

Our approach to history will be based on critical thinking; we will work with primary and
secondary sources and learn to interpret distinct and sometimes conflicting sources. The
study of history also gives you an opportunity to develop essential skills that will be
useful wherever you go: reading, listening, writing, and communicating effectively. I
hope that you will enjoy getting to know our founding mothers and fathers; our ancestors
were amazing people -- and you will see that they did not always share one way of

• American Passages: A History of the United States Brief Second Edition
• Alfred P. Young, Masquerade: The Life and Times of Deborah Sampson, Continental
• Anthony F.C. Wallace, Jefferson and the Indians: The Tragic Fate of the First
• Tony Horwitz, Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from America's Unfinished Civil
4 Tests (75%)
• We will drop the lowest test grade. However, you must complete all tests to pass
the class. The 3 best tests will count for 25% each.
Class projects and participation (25%)
• We will do a class project almost every class – this might consist of map work,
interpretation of primary sources, answering historical questions or a quiz based
on readings. The class projects are geared towards preparing you for the tests,
and they also provide a way of for us to track attendance and encourage
participation in a large lecture class. You must arrive on time and stay through
class to get class project credit. Class projects will be graded with a check-
minus, check, or a check-plus – the values will translate into (70/90/100). There
are no make- ups for class projects as we will drop two class project grades.


• My doors are open for regular office hours or by appointment. I will be happy to
answer questions about readings, clarify points from lecture, or discuss historical
issues in greater depth.
• E- mail: We check e-mail on a regular basis, however you should allow a few
days response time. The best e-mail address to use is cgerona@utdallas.edu and
pkj010100@utdallas.edu. In an emergency, you should contact us in person.
UTD has requested that we correspond only to a student’s UTD email address.
• Web CT: I will post a copy of the syllabus and other important notices or changes
on Web CT. I will not post copies of my notes or power point slides. I will bring
my power point slides for review on study days.


Classroom etiquette:
• Turn off all cell phones, pagers, text- messaging etc. Do not talk with other
students, read newspapers, do outside work, play on your computer, sleep etc.
This is distracting to me and to other students, so please be thoughtful. If you
engage in any of these practices we reserve the right to ask you to leave the class.
• There will be many opportunities for thoughtful class participation – please be
informed and considerate – and remember other students might have differing
Test days:
• Please bring a blue book to each exam. Even if you are having a bad hair day –
please do not wear a hat! And please bring a picture id.
• Missed exams lead to a zero, unless you have cleared a make-up due to an
excused absence beforehand. All four tests must be taken to pass the course.
• Excused absences: Following are the only categories that count as excused
absences – and they all require notes. Severe illness: Doctor’s note. Death in
family: Note from funeral parlor. Religious holiday: Statement from faith leader.
Official campus business: note from coach or professors. Again, let me remind
you there are no make- ups for class projects -- because these grade class
participation and I have made an allowance for two excused absences.
• Scholastic dishonesty: Students who violate university rules on scholastic
dishonesty are subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure
in the course and/or dismissal from the university. Since such dishonesty harms
the individual, all students, and the integrity of the university, policies on
scholastic dishonesty will be strictly enforced.

• This syllabus is subject to change – be aware of any in class announcements. I
will post all changes in writing. But if you are absent it is your responsibility to
find out what you missed – make friends with people in the class and stay in
• I follow university guidelines on incompletes (70% of course work must be
• If you have a disability please let me know after the first class so that we can
follow university guidelines.
• Please let us know if you are having problems or have any special needs. We are
here to help you.


R Aug 18

T Aug 23
Reading: American Passages (hereafter AP), Chapter 1: Contact, Conflict, and Exchange

R Aug 25
Reading: AP, Chapter 2, Colonization of North America

T Aug 30
Reading: AP, Chapter 3, Crisis and Change

R Sept 1
Reading: AP, Chapter 4, The Expansion of Colonial British America

T Sept 6
Optional study session

R Sept 8
Test 1

T Sept 13
Reading AP, Chapter 5, Wars for Independence
R Sept 15
Reading: Masquerade, 1-90
T Sept 20
Reading: Masquerade, 90-164

R Sept 22
Reading AP, Chapter 6, Toward a More Perfect Union

T Sept 27
Reading, AP, Chapter 7, The Federalist Republic

R Sept 29
Reading AP, Chapter 8, The New Republic Faces a New Century

T Oct 4
Optional study session

R Oct 6
Test 2

T Oct 11
Reading: Jefferson and the Indians, 1-20.

R Oct 13
Reading: Jefferson and the Indians, 161-275.

T Oct 18
Reading: AP, Chapter 9, Exploded Boundaries

R Oct 20
Reading: AP, Chapter 10, The Years of Andrew Jackson

T Oct 25
Reading: AP, Chapter 11, Panic and Boom

R Oct 27
Reading AP, Chapter 12, Expansion and Reaction

T Nov 1
Optional Study Session

R Nov 3
Test 3

T Nov 8
Reading: AP Chapter 13, Broken Bonds
R Nov 10
Reading: AP, Chapter 14, Descent into War

T Nov 15
Reading: AP, Chapter 15, Blood and Freedom

R Nov 17
Reading: Confederates in the Attic, 3-88 and any one other chapter of your own

T Nov 22
Optional study session

Final Test
T Nov 29 11:00 AM

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