Georgia Studies: Historical Understandings (Eighth Grade GPS)

Etowah Indian Figures
For complete overviews of Georgia's history and culture, see Georgia History and Cultural Landscape of Georgia.


The student will evaluate the development of Native American cultures and the impact of European exploration and settlement on the Native American cultures in Georgia. 
a. Describe the evolution of Native American cultures (Paleo, Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian) prior to European contact. 
b. Evaluate the impact of European contact on Native American cultures; include Spanish missions along the barrier islands, and the explorations of Hernando DeSoto
c. Explain reasons for European exploration and settlement of North America, with emphasis on the interests of the French, Spanish, and British in the southeastern area.


The student will analyze the colonial period of Georgia’s history. 
a. Explain the importance of James Oglethorpe, the Charter of 1732, reasons for settlement (charity, economics, and defense), Tomochichi, Mary Musgrove, and the city of Savannah
b. Evaluate the Trustee Period of Georgia’s colonial history, emphasizing the role of the Salzburgers, Highland Scots, malcontents, and the Spanish threat from Florida. 
c. Explain the development of Georgia as a royal colony with regard to land ownership, slavery, government, and the impact of the royal governors (John Reynolds, Henry Ellis, James Wright).


The student will analyze the role of Georgia in the American Revolution.
a. Explain the immediate and long-term causes of the American Revolution and their impact on Georgia; include the French and Indian War (Seven Years War), Proclamation of 1763, Stamp Act, Intolerable Acts, and the Declaration of Independence. 
b. Analyze the significance of people and events in Georgia on the Revolutionary War; include Loyalists, patriots, Elijah Clarke, Austin Dabney, Nancy Hart, Button Gwinnett, Lyman HallGeorge Walton, Battle of Kettle Creek, and siege of Savannah


The student will describe the impact of events that led to the ratification of the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. 
a. Analyze the strengths and weaknesses of both the Georgia Constitution of 1777 and the Articles of Confederation and explain how weaknesses in the Articles of Confederation led to a need to revise the Articles. 
b. Describe the role of Georgia at the Constitutional Convention of 1787; include the role of Abraham Baldwin and William Few, and reasons why Georgia ratified the new constitution.


The student will explain significant factors that affected the development of Georgia as part of the growth of the United States between 1789 and 1840. 
a. Explain the establishment of the University of Georgia, Louisville, and the spread of Baptist and Methodist churches. 
b. Evaluate the impact of land policies pursued by Georgia; include the headright system, land lotteries, and the Yazoo land fraud
c. Explain how technological developments, including the cotton gin and railroads, had an impact on Georgia’s growth. 
d. Analyze the events that led to the removal of Creeks and Cherokees; include the roles of Alexander McGillivray, William McIntosh, Sequoyah, John Ross, Dahlonega Gold Rush
Worcester v. Georgia, Andrew Jackson, John Marshall, and the Trail of Tears


The student will analyze the impact of the Civil War and Reconstruction on Georgia. 
a. Explain the importance of key issues and events that led to the Civil War; include slavery, states’ rights, nullification, Missouri Compromise, Compromise of 1850 and the Georgia Platform, Kansas-Nebraska Act, Dred Scott case, election of 1860, the debate over secession in Georgia, and the role of Alexander Stephens
b. State the importance of key events of the Civil War; include Antietam, the Emancipation Proclamation, Gettysburg, Chickamauga, the Union blockade of Georgia’s coast, Sherman’s Atlanta Campaign, Sherman’s March to the Sea, and Andersonville
c. Analyze the impact of Reconstruction on Georgia and other southern states, emphasizing Freedmen’s Bureau; sharecropping and tenant farming; Reconstruction plans; 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments to the constitution; Henry McNeal Turner and black legislators; and the Ku Klux Klan.
See also Andrews Raid, Battle of ResacaBig Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, George N. Barnard in GeorgiaBoundaries of Georgia, Joseph E. Brown, Rufus BullockCamilla MassacreTunis CampbellCapture of Jefferson Davis, Civil War Archaeology, Civil War: Atlanta Home FrontCivil War Dissent, Civil War Industry and ManufacturingCivil War Journals, Diaries, and Memoirs, Civil War on the Chattahoochee River, Constitutional Convention of 1877William and Ellen Craft, Kate CummingEmancipationFort McAllister, Freedmen's Education, Georgia in 1860, Georgia Secession Convention of 1861Gone With the Wind (Film), Gone With the Wind (Novel), Guerrilla Warfare during the Civil WarHerschel Johnson, James JohnsonJefferson Franklin LongJames Longstreet, Lost Cause Religion, Margaret Mitchell, McIntosh County Shouters, Reconstruction Conventions, Redemption, Thomas RugerSherman's Field Order No. 15, James M. SmithSpringfield Baptist Church, Robert ToombsUnionistsWanderer, Welfare and Poverty during the Civil War, Wilson's RaidWomen during the Civil War


The student will evaluate key political, social, and economic changes that occurred in Georgia between 1877 and 1918. 
a. Evaluate the impact that the Bourbon Triumvirate, Henry Grady, International Cotton ExpositionTom Watson and the Populists, Rebecca Latimer Felton, the 1906 Atlanta Riot, the Leo Frank Case, and the county unit system had on Georgia during this period. 
b. Analyze how rights were denied to African-Americans through Jim Crow laws, Plessy v. Ferguson, disenfranchisement, and racial violence. 
d. Explain reasons for World War I and describe Georgia’s contributions. 


The student will analyze the important events that occurred after World War I and their impact on Georgia. 
a. Describe the impact of the boll weevil and drought on Georgia. 
b. Explain economic factors that resulted in the Great Depression
c. Discuss the impact of the political career of Eugene Talmadge
d. Discuss the effect of the New Deal in terms of the impact of the Civilian Conservation CorpsAgricultural Adjustment Act, rural electrification, and Social Security


The student will describe the impact of World War II on Georgia’s development economically, socially, and politically. 
a. Describe the impact of events leading up to American involvement in World War II; include Lend-Lease and the bombing of Pearl Harbor. 
b. Evaluate the importance of Bell Aircraft, military bases, the Savannah and Brunswick shipyards, Richard Russell, and Carl Vinson
c. Explain the impact of the Holocaust on Georgians. 
d. Discuss President Roosevelt’s ties to Georgia including his visits to Warm Springs and his impact on the state.


The student will evaluate key post-World War II developments of Georgia from 1945 to 1970. 
a. Analyze the impact of the transformation of agriculture on Georgia’s growth. 
b. Explain how the development of Atlanta, including the roles of mayors William B. Hartsfield and Ivan Allen Jr., and major league sports, contributed to the growth of Georgia. 
c. Discuss the impact of Ellis Arnall.


The student will evaluate the role of Georgia in the modern civil rights movement. 
a. Describe major developments in civil rights and Georgia’s role during the 1940s and 1950s; include the roles of Herman Talmadge, Benjamin Mays, the 1946 governor’s race and the end of the white primary, Brown v. Board of Education, Martin Luther King Jr., and the 1956 state flag
b. Analyze the role Georgia and prominent Georgians played in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and 1970s; include such events as the founding of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), Sibley Commission, admission of Hamilton Holmes and Charlayne Hunter to the University of Georgia, Albany Movement, March on Washington, Civil Rights Act, the election of Maynard Jackson as mayor of Atlanta, and the role of Lester Maddox
c. Discuss the impact of Andrew Young on Georgia. 


The student will explain the importance of significant social, economic, and political developments in Georgia since 1970.
a. Evaluate the consequences of the end of the county unit system and reapportionment. 
b. Describe the role of Jimmy Carter in Georgia as state senator, governor, president, and past president. 
c. Analyze the impact of the rise of the two-party system in Georgia. 
d. Evaluate the effect of the 1996 Olympic Games on Georgia. 
e. Evaluate the importance of new immigrant communities to the growth and economy of Georgia.
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Cite This Article
"Georgia Studies: Historical Understandings (Eighth Grade GPS)." New Georgia Encyclopedia. 19 June 2018. Web. 07 September 2021.
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