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Essay Questions

Native California:
  1. Discuss the ways in which the Natives of California were impacted by one of the following events:

    a) The arrival of the Spanish

    b) The Mexican takeover

    c) The Gold Rush

  2. Discuss how the California Native Indians responded to life on the Missions.

  3. Describe the culture of the California Indians living in one of the following regions: Central Valley, Colorado River, Northwestern Coast, Southern California. Be sure to touch upon patterns of subsistence, political organization, cultural materialism, and economy.
Conquest of California:
  1. Discuss the geopolitical reasons why the American government wished to possess California. Be sure to include the historical and diplomatic context that made President Polk desire the territory in 1846.

  2. Discuss the immediate causes of the Mexican-American war. Include the motives of the Bear Flag Rebels, who initiate Mexican-American hostilities in California.

  3. Discuss the conduct of the Mexican-American War in California.

  4. Discuss the effects of the Mexican-American war.
The Gold Rush:
  1. Outline three techniques of placer mining. Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of using each technique.

  2. Outline three various ways in which miners could get to California from the East. Comment on the advantages and disadvantages that each route posed to would be 49ers.
  1. Discuss the negotiations that took place in the United States Congress in order for California to be admitted as a state.

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