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Online TAKS Practice

The American Nation, Grade 8

Unit 3: The Early Republic

Benchmark Test

Click on the button next to the response that best answers the question. For best results, review The American Nation: Beginnings Through 1877, chapters 9–11.

You may take the test as many times as you like. When you are happy with your results, you may e-mail your results to your teacher. Please obtain your teacher's permission before e-mailing.


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1. Use the information in the box and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

A chart titled: Achievements of the New Governments, 1789-1800. The chart has four rows, with two columns each. The first row says: Judiciary Act, Set up federal court system. The second row says: Washington, D.C. Leaders chose new site for nation's capital. The third row says: Debts paid off, Federal government repaid the debts of states and the nation. The fourth row says: Bank of the United States, Hamilton got Congress to create a national bank to hold government money and help pay bills

Which phrase best describes the era from 1789 to 1800 in U.S. history?
A fighting for independence
B expanding the borders of the nation
C putting the Constitution into effect
D settling the issue of slavery


2. Use the quote and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

"It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world. . . ."—Washington's Farewell Address, 1796

Washington set the tone for U.S. foreign policy by urging Americans to
A stay out of conflicts among foreign nations.
B side with nations that had supported the American Revolution.
C build a strong army and navy to prepare for war.
D help warring nations resolve conflicts.


3. Farmers in Pennsylvania staged an uprising against the tax on whiskey because it
A limited the crops they could sell.
B reminded farmers of the taxes imposed by France.
C issued bonds to pay off the national debt.
D imposed federal regulations on farming.


4. American political parties developed because
A the Constitution established them.
B George Washington set a precedent for them.
C Congress passed laws that led to their formation.
D Hamilton and Jefferson disagreed about what was best for the country.


5. Use the information in the chart and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

A chart titled Federalists vs. Democratic Republicans. The chart contains 6 rows, with two columns. The first row says: Federalists and Democratic Republicans. The second row says(under Federalists) Led by Alexander Hamilton, and (under Democratic Republicans) Led by Thomas Jefferson. The third row says (under federalists) Thought rich, educated people should lead nation, and (under Democratic Republicans) Thought more people should have political power. The fourth row says (under Federalists) Wanted strong federal government, and (under Democratic Republicans) Wanted strong state governments. The fifth row says (under Federalists) Wanted to encourage manufacturing and trade, and under Democratic Republicans, wanted to encourage farming. The sixth row says (under Federalists) Supported loose interpretation of the Constitution, and (under Democratic Republicans) Supported strict interpretation of the Constitution

Which of the following conclusions can be drawn from the chart above?
A The President should always be a Federalist.
B The President and Vice President should be from different political parties.
C The Vice President should always be a Democratic Republican.
D The President and Vice President should be from the same political party.


6. Which of the following established the U.S. foreign policy of taking independent action in foreign affairs?
A Neutrality Proclamation
B Alien and Sedition Acts
C Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions
D Pinckney Treaty


7. Why did the Sedition Act anger many people?
A People believed it threatened citizens' rights to free speech.
B People were afraid it would lead to a revolution.
C People thought it gave the states too much power.
D People wanted stronger punishments for criticizing the government.


8. Use the information in the box and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

1. James Monroe
2. John Adams
3. James Madison
4. Thomas Jefferson

In which order did these men serve as President?
A 1, 2, 3, 4
B 3, 4, 1, 2
C 4, 3, 2, 1
D 2, 4, 3, 1


9. Why was the Court's decision in Marbury v. Madison important to the nation?
A It decreased the size of the army and navy.
B It decreased the size of the government.
C It increased the power of the Supreme Court.
D It increased the power of the President.


10. What is the significance of the year 1803?
A The United States gained Florida.
B The United States doubled in size.
C The United States purchased land in the southwest.
D The United States annexed Texas.


11. Use the map and your knowledge of social studies to answer questions 11 and 12.

A map of the Louisiana Purchase, 1803

As a result of the Louisiana Purchase, the United States gained the area
A east of the Mississippi River.
B between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains.
C west of the Rocky Mountains.
D between the Ohio River and the Gulf of Mexico.


12. The Mississippi River was important to western farmers because it
A created a route to the Pacific Ocean.
B provided a means to ship goods to New Orleans.
C formed a link to the Great Lakes.
D carried goods to cities on the east coast.


13. One cause of the War of 1812 was that the War Hawks wanted to stop the British from
A making treaties with Native Americans.
B taking over Native American lands.
C giving guns to Native Americans.
D forcing Native Americans to work on British ships.


14. What happened to the U.S. economy as a result of the War of 1812?
A American manufacturing began to grow.
B Trade with Britain increased.
C Agriculture became more important than manufacturing.
D Wages and working conditions improved.


15. What role did women play in the Industrial Revolution in the United States?
A Most factories were owned by women.
B Most factory workers were women.
C Women earned higher wages than men.
D Women invented the machines used in factories.


16. Use the diagram and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

A diagram showing the effects of a protective tariff. The diagram shows three rolls of cloth. The first roll says: American-made cloth sells for $6 per roll. The second roll says: British-made cloth sells for $5 per roll. An arrow to the third roll says: add a 25% tariff of $1.25 per roll. The third roll then says: British-made cloth sells for $6.25 per roll

Which of the following statements summarizes the effects of a protective tariff?
A The tariff helped American manufacturing by raising the prices of American goods.
B The tariff helped American business by encouraging people to buy imported goods.
C The tariff helped American manufacturing by raising the prices of imported goods.
D The tariff helped American business by making it easier to sell goods to Britain.


17. Which innovation gave farmers and merchants a fast, cheap means of moving goods on rivers?
A tolls
B flatboats
C turnpikes
D steamboats


18. Use the graph and your knowledge of social studies to answer the following question.

A graph showing the population increase in selected United States cities between 1820 and 1840

From the graph above, what conclusion can you draw about the effect of the Industrial Revolution on U.S. cities?
A The Industrial Revolution had no effect on the growth of U.S. cities.
B During the Industrial Revolution, cities had problems of overcrowding and disease.
C The Industrial Revolution led to rapid urbanization.
D During the Industrial Revolution, many people moved from cities to farms.


19. How did the United States acquire Florida?
A It took over Florida from Native Americans.
B It purchased Florida from Spain.
C It won Florida in a war with Spain.
D It gained Florida as part of the Louisiana Purchase.


20. Which of the following warned European nations to leave the newly independent nations of Latin America alone?
A Monroe Doctrine
B Treaty of Ghent
C Adams-Onís Treaty
D Embargo Act