|United States of America |
"The Star-Spangled Banner"
|Government||Federal Democratic Republic|
|-||1913-1924||Eugene V. Debs|
|Historical era||Colonial - Progressive|
|-||Election of Debs||1912|
|See also: List of Presidents of the United States|
The United States of America was a nation that existed from 1776 until its disestablishment in 1924. The US, as it was frequently called, was a Federal Democratic Republic that was comprised of 48 states.
The history of the United States as a sovereign nation began in 1776, but many who study US History study the period from 1492-1924. Within this period, there are four primary periods.
The Colonial Period of the US extends from 1492-1776, which is from the discovery of the Americas by Cristopher Columbus until the Declaration of Independence.
During this era, first the Spaniards began to explore the American Southwest, but by the start of the 18th Century, the British had established a colony on the Eastern Seaboard. Largely left to their own devices, 13 British Colonies developed into Britain's most powerful colony.
Following the French and Indian War, the 13 Colonies were oppressed economically, and then rebelled, starting in April of 1775. The nation managed to secure its independence by 1783's Treaty of Paris.
Early Republican Period
After the victory over Great Britain, the US would find itself under a Federalist System with the Constitution of 1788. The new Republic earned international respect over the years, and the New England area began to industrialize.
In the 1846, the US declared war on Mexico. The Mexican-American War was the first combat between two independent North American nations. The US triumphed by 1848, gaining lots of land in the American Southwest.
The primary issue in the new Republic was slavery, and the rights of states to regulate whether slavery was to be legal or not.
Civil War and Reconstruction
In 1860, Republican candidate for the Presidency, Abraham Lincoln, was elected when the Democrat vote was split by two candidates. Following his election, South Carolina led the charge towards secession when it left the Union in 1861.
Other states followed, leading to the Civil War. The North, being more industrial and having moral support from the Old World, won. The era following the Civil War was designed to Reconstruct the Union.
Following the abolition of slavery, and increases in industrialization and urbanization, many people began to look to other reforms. Leaders of this movement were often from the North.
Key issues included women's suffrage, labor unions and collective bargaining, and reforms of educational and prison institutions.
The first major recognition of the Progressive Era was when the populace of the US elected William Bryan Jennings to be President in the Election of 1896.
It was during the Progressive Era that Eugene Debs organized the Pullman Strike and eventually won the Presidential Election of 1912.
The Socialist movement in the US coincided with the Labor movement and Progressive Era of the late 1800s and early 1900s. During this period, Labor Unions became prevalent.
The idea of socialism never caught on in the mainstream, but after the Presidential Election of 1912, it became much more prevalent. With the re-election of Debs in 1916, 1920, and 1924, the party soared to the front, drawing from both Democrats and Republicans who were in favor of the Progressive movement.
While the economic policies of socialism were looked down on by a decent part of the party, the social reforms were considered to be the vital part of the movement. Taking advantage of the popularity of the social reforms, a few important economic reforms were instituted before the Dissolution of the United States.
The Dissolution of the United States occurred as a result of the 1924 Constitutional Convention. Called in 1923 by a 2/3 Majority of both Houses of Congress, the Constitutional Convention led to the adoption of the Constitution of the People's Republic of America.
The Dissolution was decently contested, but in 1923 (following the call to the Convention) the Supreme Court issued a statement saying that it was possible to dissolve the union by the form of a Constitutional Amendment. This led to intense campaigning in many states, but the needed 3/4 of all states approved the 20th Amendment.
Impact on the World
The most notable impact of US was that is allowed for the creation of the People's Republic of America, which is a world power. As analyzed by Debs in the Rise of Socialism and Communism, the US provided a necessary period of transition in which mercantilist policies could become capitalist, and eventually socialist.
The US was one of the first modern nations to adopt a Constituent, which has since been mimicked in a number of nations that are in the Nationalist Union.
Finally, the US also provided the basic outline for a peaceful transition from a capitalist nation to a socialist nation.