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  • Summer Video Roundup

    Summer Video Roundup

    Historical Spotlight is currently featuring a video series on the Supreme Court case of Hylton v. United States. Perhaps you are wondering why we chose such an obscure case to examine. Why couldn’t we have picked more commonly studied cases such as Marbury v. Madison, Dred Scott or Roe? The reason is because we believe that this often-overlooked case is one of the most important cases in Supreme Court history. It is actually the first case that involved judicial review. In Marbury v. Madison (1803), […]

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  • Hylton v. United States Part 1: Federalists v. Antifederalists

    This is the first part in a series of videos that explores the controversies concerning taxation at the beginning of the American Republic.

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  • “What is a Dollar?” A History of the United States Dollar

    “What is a Dollar?” A History of the United States Dollar

    This video explores the history of the U.S. dollar from 1776 to the present, seeking to answer the question “What is a dollar?”

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  • California Defies the Union: The War on Greenbacks

    California Defies the Union: The War on Greenbacks

    In February 1862, the federal government passed the Legal Tender Act. This law mandated that the public had to accept fiat government notes (greenbacks) for all debts public and private. However, the State of California defied the federal government for seventeen years and retained a gold standard.

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  • The Legal Tender Acts (1862-1865): A Revolution In U.S. Monetary Policy

    The Legal Tender Acts (1862-1865): A Revolution In U.S. Monetary Policy

    This video highlights the Legal Tender Bill passed by the federal government on February 25, 1862. It explores the revolutionary nature of the bill including constitutional, inflationary and moral aspects.

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  • Funding the American Civil War: A Revolution in Government Finance 1861

    Historical Spotlight examines the revolutionary financial methods employed by the Federal government in 1861 to fund the Union army during the American Civil War. We explore how a new monetary system was created, and the implications of borrowing, taxation, and money printing.

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  • Shays’ Rebellion: Epilogue to the American Revolution

    Shays’ Rebellion: Epilogue to the American Revolution

    Was Shays’ rebellion an uprising by indebted farmers trying to get their debts extinguished or was it a legitimate tax revolt? This video will explore what really happened in western Massachusetts between the years 1786-1787 and reveal how Shays’ Rebellion was instrumental in bringing about the U.S. Constitution.

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  • The American System: Tariffs Part 1

    The American System: Tariffs Part 1

    The third plank of Henry Clay’s American System, and probably the most controversial was the protective tariff. This video will explore the economic, constitutional and political issues associated the tariff policy in the Unites States from 1789-1859.

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  • The American System: Tariffs Part 2

    The American System: Tariffs Part 2

    The third plank of Henry Clay’s American System, and probably the most controversial was the protective tariff. This video will explore the economic, constitutional and political issues associated the tariff policy in the Unites States from 1789-1859.

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  • The Battle of Gettysburg: 9 Reasons Why the Confederates Lost Part 1

    With their loss at Gettysburg, the high water mark of the Confederacy was reached and hopes of an independent country were dashed. The question that historians always seem to ponder is how did an army flush with success and with momentum on their side lose this battle? Relying heavily on General E. Porter Alexander’s Fighting for the Confederacy, this video will attempt to answer that question.

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  • The Battle of Gettysburg: 9 Reasons Why the Confederates Lost Part 2

    With their loss at Gettysburg, the high water mark of the Confederacy was reached and hopes of an independent country were dashed. The question that historians always seem to ponder is how did an army flush with success and with momentum on their side lose this battle? Relying heavily on General E. Porter Alexander’s Fighting for the Confederacy, this video will attempt to answer that question.

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  • The American System Part 4: The 2nd Bank of the U.S.

    The establishment of a national bank was a key part of Henry Clay’s American system. This video explores the controversial beginnings of the 2nd Bank of the U.S. to its final death at the hands of Andrew Jackson and his allies. The bank’s constitutionality and economic impact will be highlighted. Historical Topics Covered: Alexander Hamilton’s American System National Bank Bill 1791 Henry Clay’s 1811 Opinion on National Bank’s Constitutionality 2nd Bank of the U.S. Inflation and Deflation of Money Supply […]

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