SAT II US History : U.S. Social History from Pre-Columbian History to 1789

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT II US History

varsity tutors app store varsity tutors android store

Example Questions

← Previous 1 3

Example Question #1 : Cause And Effect In Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

What was one consequence of the French-Indian Wars that would work to the colonists’ advantage moving forward?

Possible Answers:
French loss of territory West of the Mississippi lead to a free expansion of colonial settlers westward
The British government was forced to repeal many of the strict tax and tariff laws in an accord with the colonial militia
The French and the colonists became more closely linked, leading to a revolutionary war-time alliance
Native Americans were co-opted into the military organization and thus were more closely linked with the colonists
The colonial militia gained fighting experience and witnessed that the British could be beaten in battle
Correct answer: The colonial militia gained fighting experience and witnessed that the British could be beaten in battle
Explanation:

The experience of the colonial militia fighting the French-Indian war would prove invaluable when it came time to call in the militias for the Revolution. Without this conflict they might have remained disorganized and unaccustomed to battle. Furthermore, it helped embolden many, who might have otherwise erred, that the British could be beaten in battle. The French would come to the colonists’ aid in the Revolutionary War, but it was not due to this conflict – where they fought bloodily opposite one another. Native Americans were co-opted as part of the struggle, but hardly found themselves included in the political or social discourse after peace had been made. The British government, far from repealing harsh taxes and tariffs, imposed significantly more obtrusive ones in order to recoup the money lost in war. Finally, the French did lose the Louisiana territory, but it was ceded to the Spanish, not the British, who remained as much an obstacle to Western expansion as had the French. 

Example Question #1 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which of the following was NOT a reason Spanish monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella financed Christopher Columbus' initial voyage in 1492?

Possible Answers:

Spain desired to have a special opportunity to import spices from Asian markets.

Columbus and the Spanish Monarchs sought to spread Christianity into Asia.

Columbus was seeking a quicker route to Asia than the Eastward trip around Africa.

Ferdinand and Isabella believed Columbus might find gold and other precious metals.

Spain wished to settle the Americas before its European rivals.

Correct answer:

Spain wished to settle the Americas before its European rivals.

Explanation:

The key argument for Columbus' voyage west across the Atlantic Ocean was to find a shorter route to the Far East, which was importing spices and precious metals across the Eurasian landmass to Western Europe. The Catholic Church was also attempting to missionize into Asia. Most learned people in the late fifteenth century believed the earth was round. Where Columbus disagreed with the consensus was in his belief the Earth was much smaller. Many scholars at the time knew just how big the earth was, but did not believe there was a landmass between Japan and Western Europe. Columbus believed he had reached Indonesia when he landed in the Caribbean, and never thought he had discovered a new Continent.

Example Question #1 : Cause And Effect In Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which Constitutional Amendment protects United States citizens from unreasonable search and seizure?

Possible Answers:

Sixteenth 

Sixth 

Seventeenth 

Fourth 

Fifth 

Correct answer:

Fourth 

Explanation:

The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects United States citizens from unreasonable search and seizure of property. In practical application it requires law enforcement to provide a warrant and valid cause before any invasion of privacy can take place. The Fourth Amendment was added to the Bill of Rights in response to British abuses of writs of assistance, which, in pre-Revolutionary America, allowed British colonial officials to inspect property whenever they pleased.

Example Question #1 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

The Eighth Amendment prohibits __________.

Possible Answers:

double jeopardy

cruel and unusual punishment 

the personal consumption of alcohol 

judicial review 

the President from serving more than two terms

Correct answer:

cruel and unusual punishment 

Explanation:

The Eighth Amendment prohibits the use of “cruel and unusual punishment” when dealing with criminal practice. The Amendment has its roots in British common law and later the British Bill of Rights. The terms "cruel and unusual" are somewhat vague and open to interpretation. As a result, throughout American history, legal and judicial theorists have offered competing definitions of cruel and unusual; however, it is generally considered to prohibit mental and physical torture, as well as dehumanizing and humiliating treatment. 

Example Question #2 : Cause And Effect In Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which Constitutional Amendment prevents the forced quartering of soldiers in the houses of ordinary citizens?

Possible Answers:

Third 

Fifth 

Fourteenth 

Twelfth 

Eighth 

Correct answer:

Third 

Explanation:

During British colonial rule many Americans living on the frontiers were forced to house British soldiers. This practice was particularly common during the French-Indian Wars in the middle of the eighteenth century. The economic and social strain of this situation was one of the motivating factors behind the outbreak of revolution. After colonial rule was overthrown, the new United States government sought to prohibit forced quartering in the Constitution. This was achieved with the passage of the Third Amendment. 

Example Question #1 : Facts And Details In Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which of the following colonies was not first settled by people of English descent?

Possible Answers:
Massachusetts
Connecticut
Georgia
Virginia
New York
Correct answer: New York
Explanation:

New York was originally called New Amsterdam when it was established by the Dutch in 1614.  Surrounded by English settlements, the small colony was taken by the English in 1664 and rechristened New York.

Example Question #1 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Founded in 1607, this was the first permanent English settlement in the New World.

Possible Answers:

Boston

New York

Jamestown

Charleston

Plymouth

Correct answer:

Jamestown

Explanation:

The first permanent English settlement in the New World was Jamestown.  Plymouth, Massachusetts was founded in 1620.

Example Question #1 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which European first discovered and crossed the Mississippi River?

Possible Answers:

Hernando de Soto 

Juan Ponce de Leon 

Vasco Nunez del Balboa

Francisco Pizarro 

Hernan Cortes 

Correct answer:

Hernando de Soto 

Explanation:

Hernando de Soto is the first European known to have discovered and crossed the Mississippi River. His expedition ranged across the southeastern and western United States. He was searching primarily for gold, like many Spanish explorers of the time. The motivation for Spanish exploration is often illustrated by historians with the simple phrase “God, glory, and gold.” God—the desire to spread Christianity to Native populations. Glory—the desire to make a name for oneself back in Spain. Gold—the desire for wealth. It is important to remember these three primary motivations as they explain the actions of many European explorers at the time.

Example Question #2 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

What was the first European community established in the territory now called the United States?

Possible Answers:

Santa Fe

St. Augustine 

Jamestown

Plymouth

Roanoke

Correct answer:

St. Augustine 

Explanation:

The city of St. Augustine was established in 1565, in what is now Florida. For many years prior the French and Spanish had tried and failed to establish a European community in Florida, Georgia and elsewhere. The city began life as a base from which the Spanish could combat both piracy and the French. After a shipment of slaves arrived the community grew at a reasonably fast rate.

Example Question #3 : U.S. Social History From Pre Columbian History To 1789

Which of the following original states did not permit slavery in its borders in 1789?

Possible Answers:

New Jersey

New York

Massachusetts

Delaware

Maryland

Correct answer:

Massachusetts

Explanation:

Slavery was fairly widespread in the American colonies before the American Revolution.  Great Britain did not allow slavery until the early ninteenth century, and each colony got to decide its own laws about slavery. Slavery had become much more widespread on Southern plantations, and developed more strongly there. In the north, only a few states completely banned slavery. New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut all slowly outlawed slavery shortly after the Revolution. Massachusetts and Pennsylvania were the most notable large states to have never allowed slavery.

← Previous 1 3
Learning Tools by Varsity Tutors