Skip to main content

APUSH Project (Fall 2015): "The Influence of Democracy in America, 1776-1860": Home

Dr. Combest

Slaves Picking Cotton

"Slaves Picking Cotton."  Library of Congress.  Facts on File, Inc.  American History Online.

Contact a Librarian

Feel free to contact a librarian for research or citation assistance. We are generally available in our offices for drop in help or scheduled appointments throughout the academic day.

Liesel Good
Office: CFL, Main Level

Karen McCarthy
Office: CFL, Main Level

Heather McCulley
Office: CFL, Upper Level

Pamela Nye
Office: CFL, Upper Level

Alexis de Tocqueville

(from Britanica Image Quest)

"I confess that in America I saw more than America; I sought there the image of democracy itself, with its inclinations, its character, its prejudices, and its passions, in order to learn what we have to fear or to hope from its progress."
                                                     --from Democracy in America, 1835 
(Click on the 'Websites' tab above to find the full text of this book, plus resources supporting de Toqueville's various themes)

Project Description

A key theme of American history before the Civil War concerns the shift from republican ideology to the spread of democratic values and ideals throughout society as well as various kinds of resistance to such democratic tendencies.  We can trace this influence in politics, in reform movements, in the experiences of different social groups and in many other areas -- Americans seeking, expressing, or sometimes resisting, for themselves or others, equality, freedom, opportunity, and progress.

For your fall semester project, you and a few partners will write an analytical paper on a specific topic within this larger theme.  You will be given a broad topic to investigate and refine, then you will do primary source and secondary source research on the way to writing an 8-10 page group paper that describes the topic and that makes sense of developments and changes from the late 18th century to the mid 9th century.Your paper should focus in large part on how the theme of democratic values and ideas is relevant to your topic..  You will document your research using the Chicago Manual of Style.  This Guide will help you connect to resources containing both primary and secondary sources.  Please do not hesitate to contact a librarian or Dr. Combest if you encounter a problem in your research.

Map of US in 1840

1840 Map of the United States

The map of the United States shown below displays the boundaries for each of the states that existed in year 1840 according to the United States Geological Survey Bulletin 1212.

Red= Manmade boundary        Black=Disputed boundary



Monday through Thursday
8:00 am - 4:30 pm

 & Friday
8:00 am - 3:00

Closed weekends and school holidays

Hours subject to change in accordance with the school calendar

Summer Hours


Monday through Friday

9:30 am - 1:30 pm