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Civil War: Practice Multiple Choice Questions
1. The term "abolitionist movement" refers to:
(A) a Southerner who controlled the new state governments following the Civil War.
(B) a black who is willingly subservient to white Americans.
(C) inhabitants of a territory deciding for themselves the issue of slavery.
(D) a series of secret stations used to smuggle runaway slaves out of the South.
(E) a vigorous anti-slavery movement demanding the freeing of slaves without compensation to their old
2. The Southern reaction to the Nat Turner revolt and the publication of The Liberator was to:
(A) begin to argue that slavery was a good institution.
(B) encourage the migration of slaves to the Middle West.
(C) agree to discuss the issue of abolition in Congress.
(D) invite Garrison to address the Virginia legislature on abolition.
3. Which of the following had the greatest impact on the institution of slavery in the United
quarter of the nineteenth century?
(A) Demands of Southern textile manufacturers for cotton
(B) Introduction of corp rotation and fertilizers
(C) Use of more stringent techniques of slave control
(D) Invention of the cotton gin
(E) The "Three-fifths" Compromise
States in the first
4. All of the following statements about pre-Civil War American slavery are true EXCEPT:
(A) Although experience varied from one plantation to another, investments in slaves generally yielded rates
of return equal to or better than other forms of investments of comparable risk in the pre-Civil War
American economy.
(B) Although Southern legal codes did not uniformly provide for the legalization and stability of slave
marriage, slaves were generally able to marry, and the institution of marriage was common on Southern
(C) Although slaves were mainly employed in agriculture, by the 1850's they also were employed as
construction workers and industrial laborers.
(D) Because of the relative ease with which slaves could gain their freedom by manumission or by purchase,
the proportion of freedmen to slaves was almost equal in many areas of the South.
(E) Despite the geographical diffusion of slavery throughout the South, at no time did the majority of white
families in the South own slaves.
1. The Free Soil party nominated as their candidate in the presidential election of 1848 which
A. Zachary Taylor.
B. Martin Van Buren.
C. Lewis Cass.
D. Millard Fillmore.
E. Winfield Scott.
2. The Supreme Court's decision in the Dred Scott case in 1857 effectively repealed the
A. Missouri Compromise
B. Fugitive Slave Act
C. Ostend Manifesto
D. Wilmot Proviso
E. Eleventh Amendment to the Constitution
3. Which of the following states the principle of "popular sovereignty"?
A. Congress has the right to decide where slavery shall and shall not exist.
B. The settlers in a given territory have the sole right to decide whether or not slavery will be
permitted there.
C. Individual citizens can decide for themselves whether or not to hold slaves.
D. The American people shall decide where slavery will exist through a national plebiscite.
E. Individual states have the right to reject congressional decisions pertaining to slavery.
4. The first attempt to apply the doctrine of popular sovereignty in determining the status of slavery
occurred in
A. Texas
B. California
C. Kansas
D. Missouri
E. Oregon
5. At the beginning of the Civil War Lincoln did not declare that freeing slaves was a goal of the Union
A. Britain and France would likely join in alliance with the South over that issue.
B. Republican platform of 1860 had promised that would not be a goal.
C. Crucial border states would likely swing behind the South.
D. He did not have the military manpower to make good his goal.
E. He still hoped to bring some of the rebel states back into the Union.
6. In order to tie the border states securely to the Union, Lincoln did all of the following EXCEPT?
A. Declared martial law in Maryland.
B. Arrested executive and legislative leaders of Missouri.
C. Insisted he was defending the Union, not attacking slavery.
D. Sent occupational troops into Missouri.
E. Deployed Union troops in western Virginia.
7. The South's assets as the Civil War broke out included all of the following EXCEPT?
A. Talented military leaders.
B. Fighting a defensive war.
C. Youth of South were already possessed skills needed by soldiers.
D. Good transportation networks within the South.
E. Half of U.S. naval and military officers were loyal to the South.
8. The North's advantages over the South at the outbreak of the Civil War included all of the following
A. greater agreement over war aims.
B. more substantial industrial resources.
C. a more extensive railroad network.
D. dominance in foreign trade.
E. naval supremacy.
9. In the presidential election of 1860, which of the following positions was asserted by the Republican Party
Platform with respect to slavery?
A. Slavery should be abolished immediately by the federal government.
B. The extension of slavery to other countries should be prohibited.
C. The Missouri Compromise line (36 Degrees, 30 Minutes) should be extended to the Pacific Ocean, and
slavery should be prohibited in territories above that line.
D. The gradual emancipation of the slaves should begin, and the federal government should compensate
slave owners for the loss of slave property.
E. The extension of slavery to United States territories should be prohibited by the federal government, but
slavery should be protected in the states where it already existed.