Unit 4: The New Republic, Growth,
and Reform (1789-1850)
Reformers of the Antebellum Era
Daily Learning Target:
•I can analyze and identify the major characteristics of the
abolitionist movement, the drive for women’s rights, and other
significant religious, philosophical, and social reform
movements of the Antebellum period.
The Four Major Areas of Antebellum Reform
1. Abolition of Slavery
2. Women’s Rights
3. Religious Revival
4. Social Problems
1. The Abolitionist Movement
 Goal: To end slavery in the
 Background: By 1804, all
states north of MD had ended
slavery and the slave trade
was banned in 1808.
 Abolitionists viewed slaves as
the nation’s most exploited
and desperate people.
 Both whites and blacks used a
variety of methods to fight
the “peculiar institution.”
2. Women’s Rights
 Goal: To gain equality for
American women.
 Background: In the early 1800s
women usually couldn’t own
property, hold office, vote, get
an education beyond grade
school, earn the same pay as
men, or, in some cases, even
work outside the home.
 Industrialization and the
abolitionist movement helped
inspire the women’s movement;
women also disagreed about
how “equal” they should be.
3. Religious Revival
 Goal: To lead individuals to personal
salvation and apply Christian morals
and values to create a better U.S.
Background: In 1801, a Second Great
Awakening, born on the Kentucky
frontier, believed increased religious
participation was the key to the
country’s survival and prosperity.
The movement was led by Protestant
In 1800 only 20% of Americans went to
church; by 1850, 50% attended.
New churches (Mormon, Unitarian,
Church of Christ, Shakers, and AME)
were founded.
Some religions (Roman Catholic, Jews,
and Mormons) faced discrimination.
4. Social Problems
 Goal: To end suffering in
America and help those in
 Background: Targeted a
variety of issues such as
drinking (temperance),
dueling, prisons, hospitals,
asylums, labor, Native
Americans, diet, and
 The successes and failures of
these movements are varied
in degree.
Assignment: Foldable Notes
Reformers of the Antebellum Era
1. The Abolitionist Movement
 William Lloyd Garrison – most influential abolitionist, Boston,
MA – anti-slavery newspaper called The Liberator
Frederick Douglas – best-known black abolitionist; an escaped,
self-taught, MD slave who traveled & spoke out against slavery;
published anti-slavery paper The North Star
Harriet Tubman – escaped slave who led more than 300 slaves to
freedom on Underground Railroad – a secret network of
conductors, paths, and safe houses from S-N & Canada
Grimke Sisters – daughters of S slaveholders who went N to speak
out against slavery; also worked for women’s rights
Henry David Thoreau – well-known MA author who used civil
disobedience to combat slavery; refusing to obey an unjust law
2. Women’s Rights
 Susan B. Anthony – best known advocate for women’s rights.
Worked for over 50 years for the vote, temperance, and
abolition of slavery.
 Elizabeth Cady Stanton – speaker who helped organize the
Seneca Falls Convention (1848) – which fought for women’s
 Lucretia Mott – Quaker; helped organize Women’s
Antislavery Society and Seneca Falls Convention & traveled
widely to help fight for women’s rights
 Sojourner Truth – ex-NY slave; writer and speaker who
fought against slavery and women’s rights with L. Mott
3. Religious Revival
 Second Great Awakening – Began in early 1800s on KY frontier;
led by Protestant preachers who believed individual salvation
would lead people to work for a better society. Church
membership grew from 20% in 1800 to 50% by 1850.
 Charles Grandison Finney – most influential revivalist of Second
Great Awakening
 Joseph Smith & Brigham Young – NY: organized Mormon Church
(1830); banished from OH & MO, Smith was murdered & Young
led them to Utah
 Mother Ann Lee (Shakers) – from England to NY (1774); brought
“Shaking Quakers” to America. Taught celibacy and forbade
marriage and shook during worship. After her death missionaries
found a Shaker commune at Pleasant Hill, KY (1805-1910) that
grew crops and produced hand-made goods for sale.
4. Social Problems
 Dorothea Dix – MA Sunday School teacher inspired by 2nd
Great Awakening; worked for prison, hospital, mental asylum
reform, & humane treatment of prisoners.
 Horace Mann – MA education reformer: “Education is the
great equalizer.” Favored tax-supported, state-controlled
public schools, standardized tests, and professional teachers.
 American Temperance Society – worked to abolish alcohol
because they believed it was responsible for abuse, poverty,
crime, & health problems; Maine Laws (1851) were 1st of 12
states to limit sale of alcohol
You know your Antebellum Reformers if
you can answer these!
1. Which organization below worked to make the manufacture, sale,
and consumption of alcohol illegal?
a. the Seneca Falls Convention
c. the Niagara Movement
b. the American Temperance Society
d. the Salvation Army
2. Reformers William Lloyd Garrison, Angelina and Sarah Grimke,
and Frederick Douglas are most closely associated with which
a. Abolition
c. Temperance
b. the Second Great Awakening d. Women’s Suffrage
3. Which 19th Century reformer is best known for working to
help people with mental illness?
a. Abigail Adams
Margaret Fuller
b. Dorothea Dix
Horace Mann
4. Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Lucretia Mott
worked tirelessly for women’s suffrage. Women’s suffrage
a. equal pay for equal work.
c. the right of women to
b. putting an end to spousal abuse.
d. women can inherit
5. Which statement below is false regarding the Second Great
Awakening that swept the U.S. during the early 1800s?
a. It began on the Kentucky frontier near the present-day city of
b. It was started by Protestant revivalists who held outdoor
services and camp meetings.
c. Church membership declined from 50 percent in 1800 to 20
percent in 1850.
d.It inspired people to work for an improved society as well as
for personal salvation.

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