Why did Europeans initially embark on exploration expeditions?

Why did Europeans initially embark on exploration expeditions?

In your midterm essay, answer the following questions using the terms provided. Remember, that you are trying to write a cohesive essay while explaining concepts to someone that may not have knowledge of this area of history. This essay’s timespan is from the beginning of the semester to Chapter 7.

This must be written as a continuing essay, and may not be written in sections. This means you have to make smooth transitions and add explanatory paragraphs to make those transitions when necessary.

You may use the book and any reference from the U.S. History in Context Reference through SAC’s library. I STRONGLY urge you not to use websites that end in .com. Instead, try your best to use the following: .edu, .org, or .gov if you need reference help.

Each term must be used appropriately. (Appropriate means that its placement in the essay makes sense and it is properly explained.) The essay should be about 2-3 double spaced pages. You may write your response in the space below, or copy and paste from a word processing program. DO NOT copy and paste responses. Anyone caught doing this will receive an F for this exam.



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The history of the United States has its beginnings in the period of technological invention and innovation throughout Europe, as well as the “discovery” of the New World. This “discovery” defined a new cross-Atlantic economic system, and eventually led to the founding of the United States, among the other nations in North and South America. Once European colonists—specifically the British in the thirteen colonies—established their place in the trade networks and in opposition to the British monarchy we see the formation of a new nation. This essay asks you to trace these prominent themes: exploration, economy, liberty, and nation building.


Question 1

Question 125 pts


The Prompt:

Why did Europeans initially embark on exploration expeditions? How did finding the New World shape an emerging economic system based on exploitation and human violations, specifically in the British colonies? How did notions of “liberty” change among the British, their colonists, and slaves up to the American Revolution? How did liberty and rebellion come to shape the new nation? What were limits of the new United States government and how was it challenged?

The Terms:

Printing press



Triangular Trade

Stono Rebellion

Republicanism (not the political party)

Liberalism (not today’s meaning)

Daughters of Liberty

Articles of Confederation

Shays’s Rebellion

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