Period 5 Timeline

1750 - 1900 KEY CONCEPTS: 5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform 5.4 Global Migration


James Watt Perfects Steam Engine


James Watt's new steam engine allowed the industrial revolution to really take off, as it did not rely on water power and allowed factories to move away from rivers, meaning that more of them could be built. The steam engine was applied in many industries to increase production levels, as well as in locomotives.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism

Cotton Gin Developed


The cotton gin was developed by Eli Whitney, an American inventor. His invention helped to further mechanize the cotton textiles industry, and continue industrialization and the promotion of the factory system of manufacture.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism

Emancipation Of Russian Serfs


The emancipation of the Russian serfs was one of the first steps in the Russian government's plans to modernize and industrialize their country. The serfs needed to be freed from their agricultural duties so they could labor in factories, so they were not actually freed, just transferred into a new unpleasant situation. However, Russia did not modernize its agricultural methods when it began industrializing, which meant that a smaller number of peasants had to produce the same amount of food with the same antiquated tools.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Meiji Restoration


The Meiji Restoration occurred when the emperor was reinstalled as effective leader of Japan, rather than the feudal system that had been employed before. Japanese government looked to the West to improve themselves as a nation and industrialize. power. They did this because they feared foreign imperialism and because they wanted to be a world power. Using nationalism and positive war propaganda, Japan modernized without much resistance from its population, and established itself as a major global power with its defeat of Russia in the Russo-Japanese War and China in the Sino-Japanese War.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Henry Ford Introduces Assembly Line Production


Henry Ford was an American entrepreneur whose innovative methods of factory production revolutionized the automobile industry in the USA. Ford's assembly lines meant that parts were mass produced and later assembled in conveyor belt lines of organized assembly, cutting down production time significantly. This allowed for cars to be more commonplace in America, and serves as a prime example of America's industrial, capitalist society.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism

Enlightenment Thought/Nationalism/Revolution

Reign Of King Louis XVI

1774 - 1793

King Louis XVI was the king of France leading up to and during the French Revolution. He was unprepared for the position and not particularly interested in governing France, preferring to luxuriate in the lifestyle being a member of the royal family entailed. He married Marie Antoinette, and they became increasingly unpopular as French people struggled with the declining economy and they did nothing to alleviate the problem. He was executed during the Jacobin-controlled portion of the French Revolution.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

American Revolution

1775 - 1781

Britain's colonies in America became more and more angered by British taxation of their goods and limitations on their trade. The colonies were already autonomous in essence, but wanted to be entirely independent, and so fought and won a war with Britain, with help from French allies. The newly formed United States of America drafted their constitution with Enlightenment principles in mind, especially concepts from the work of English philosopher John Locke. These included the social construct, popular sovereignty, and universal human rights.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Simón Bolivar

1783 - 1830

Simón Bolivar was an upper class Latin American man who, inspired by Europe's enlightenment philosophy, wanted to apply concepts like popular sovereignty and guaranteed human rights in Latin American government. He campaigned with the help of various allies and supporters to remove Spanish and Portuguese rulers from South America. Once it became independent, Bolivar wanted to establish a confederacy like the USA in North America, but the regional differences between Latin American people and their inexperience with self government made that impossible. Bolivar died of tuberculosis after having given up his vision being realized.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation

French Revolution

1789 - 1799

The French Revolution was inspired by the American Revolution and the newly popular enlightenment ideals of the time, like popular sovereignty, basic human rights, and the social contract. Tensions in France were on the rise with incompetent royals Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, whose extravagance caused outrage among starving peasants in the struggling French economy. France's Estates General were an incredibly unfair governmental institution in which nobles and clergymen (3% of the population) had more say in the government than the other 97%. The Revolution began as educated middle class men began campaigning for a more enlightened government, then began spiraling out of control as the revolutionaries factionalized and the situation deteriorated. The most radical left group, the Jacobins, eventually established themselves as the leaders of the revolutionaries. This marked the beginning of the Reign Of Terror, in which thousands were executed for suspicion of counterrevolutionary actions. After the Jacobins' leader, Robespierre, was executed, France was in political turmoil until Napoleon took over and launched the Napoleonic Wars. Historically, the French Revolution was one of the more radical revolutions, and it inspired revolutions in other locations, like Haiti and Latin America.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform 5.4 Global Migration

Haitian Revolution

1791 - 1803

The Haitian Revolution was the only successful slave revolt in history. It took place in the French sugar colony of Saint-Domingue on the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean. Led by Toussaint Louverture, slaves destroyed plantations and overthrew their masters, establishing Haiti as its own nation with universal suffrage and complete legal equality for people of all races (in line with Enlightenment Ideals).

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Napoleonic Wars

1799 - 1814

The Napoleonic Wars were a series of expansion campaigns led by French ruler Napoleon Bonaparte, who was spreading French ideas throughout Europe as he conquered. This sparked a lot of nationalism in response to or fear of the imminent threat of Napoleon and the French army, and eventually the Congress of Vienna was held to put a stop to Napoleon's campaign and redraw the borders of Europe.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Reign Of Napoleon

1799 - 1814

Napoleon Bonaparte took over France, filling the power vacuum there after the downfall of the Jacobins. He ruled, in effect, as a dictator, fostering a strong sense of nationalism among French people and undertaking various programs for the improvement of the nation as a whole (schools, national holidays, etc.). However, he did not rule entirely according to Enlightenment principles; an example of this was his censoring of French media. He also expanded France in the Napoleonic Wars, which eventually caught the attention of the rest of Europe, who were worried he would spread enlightenment ideas and revolution to their countries. Napoleon was exiled to an island, and the French monarchy was reinstated by the Congress of Vienna.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Wars Of Independence In Latin America

1810 - 1825

The Latin American Independence Wars were mostly fueled by upper class Latin Americans who were angered by the fact that their land and trade rights were controlled by the Spanish or Portuguese. South American states broke away from their foreign rulers gradually, and afterwards the social and political situations were much the same there, except that the Latin American upper class population, the creoles, had taken the place of the Europeans. A leader of the revolutions was Simón Bolivar, who was inspired by Enlightenment ideas.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Congress Of Vienna

1814 - 1815

In the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars, Europe's great powers convened in Vienna to reestablish Europe's borders. The Congress effectively forced 100 years of peace in Europe, but the newly drawn borders caused tensions later on. Monarchy was reinstated in France, as the Congress wanted to prevent Enlightened revolutions from happening again there or anywhere else in Europe.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

War Of Greek Independence

1821 - 1827

The Balkan Peninsular was under the control of the crumbling Ottoman Empire, whose vulnerable state allowed Greece to win their independence fairly easily. The growing Greek nationalist movement was inspired by the Greek ethnic and religious minorities in the region and the growing nationalist movements in other states.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Women's Rights Convention, Seneca Falls, NY


The Seneca Falls Convention was a gathering of feminist thinkers who applied the enlightenment principles of basic human rights and a person's duty to be involved in their government to women and their lack of political or social rights. They demanded education and votes for women, and though the movement was not, at first, very successful, it showed how enlightenment thought was applied by minority groups to benefit themselves.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Communist Manifesto Published


The Communist Manifesto was a political pamphlet written by radical socialist thinkers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. It made clear Marx and Engels' views on capitalist society and how industrialization has furthered the class divide between the upper class (the bourgeoisie), and the lower (the proletariat). It concludes with a call for working class people to overthrow the bourgeoisie and establish a new, communist society, where private property does not exist and there is no dominant socioeconomic class. The Manifesto became popular among opponents of capitalism and those who are at a disadvantage in capitalist society.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Taiping Rebellion

1850 - 1864

The Taiping Rebellion was a Chinese rebel group looking to radically reform Chinese society and government by abolishing foot binding and concubinage, creating a system of free public education, mass literacy, simplification of the written language, and creation of communal wealth rather than private property. It was led by Chinese schoolteacher Hong Xiuquan, who advocated for the end of Qing rule in China. The rebellion contributed to the collapse of the Qing Dynasty.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Unification Of Italy

1859 - 1870

Italy was a series of city-states with various types of government after the fall of the Western Roman Empire. After the Congress Of Vienna, much of Italy was placed under Austrian rule, and Spain had influence in Southern Italy. However, there was a growing Italian nationalist movement who, when united with politicians Count Camillo di Cavour, allied with France to end Austrian influence in Italy. In the south, nationalist leader Guiseppe Garibaldi ended Spanish influence. The nation absorbed Venice and Rome and consolidated their new state over the next ten years.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Unification Of Germany

1864 - 1871

Germany's unification came about in part because of the efforts of politician Otto von Bismarck and his use of conservative nationalism to unite German people. He engineered three wars, all of which Germany won, to end Austrian influence in Germany and to build up a sense of German national identity. The German government sponsored industrial endeavors as well to help modernize the country.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Mexican Revolution

1910 - 1920

The Mexican Revolution was caused mostly by the vast inequality of land distribution between the upper and lower socioeconomic classes. The Mexican government was very corrupt, and rebels wanted universal suffrage and a more enlightened government. The American government backed the oppressive government during the revolution, but the rebels eventually won.

5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform


Opium War

1839 - 1842

The Opium War was a conflict between Qing China and Great Britain over Britain's sale of opium to Chinese people. The high rates of opium addiction were damaging China, and the emperor requested that Britain stop selling the drug (which was illegal in Britain). Tensions rose as Chinese officials attempted to stop the sale of opium, which was the only trade commodity Britain had that China wanted. Britain couldn't allow that because it was so reliant on Chinese goods, especially tea, and so it went to war. The war ended quickly and Britain won, then forced the Chinese to sign a treaty that gave British people in China extraterritoriality, gave Britain Hong Kong, made China pay Britain large sums of money, and began Europe's economic imperialism of China, characterized by the carving out of spheres of trade influence there.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation

Sepoy Rebellion


The Sepoy Rebellion was a response of Indian soldiers in British India to their treatment at the hands of British officials. Their main grievance was that the cartridges they were made to use were capped with a substance that included pork and beef fat, and the cartridge caps had to be bitten off to use the bullets. Ingesting pork and beef is not allowed according to the main religions of Indian people, Hinduism and Islam, and the British ignored this when providing the soldier with ammunition. The rebellion was violent, and pit down violently. Before the Sepoy Rebellion, India was controlled by the British East India Company, but afterwards the British government took direct control of India and began colonizing there more.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform; 5.4 Global Migration

Construction Of Suez Canal

1859 - 1869

The Suez Canal was a strategically placed man-made waterway that facilitated travel and trade between Britain and its colonies in India. Steamships traveled along the canal, bringing goods and people back and forth at previously unheard-of rates. Controlling the land around the Suez Canal was the primary reason for Britain's takeover of Egypt.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.4 Global Migration

Darwin's Origin Of Species Published


Origin Of Species was a book written by Charles Darwin about his theory of evolution, showing how species differentiate over time but once all shared a common ancestor. After he died, however, Europeans applied his concept of survival of the fittest to their imperialistic ambitions, creating the concept of social darwinism. This mostly entailed white men justifying their exploitation of people and land that they stole by saying that they were naturally superior to people of other races. This was applied especially in the scramble for Africa, and is notably characterized in Rudyard Kipling's poem, The White Man's Burden. Social darwinism laid a basis for more modern racism and general European superiority.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation

Berlin West Africa Conference

1884 - 1885

The Berlin Conference was held during the Scramble for Africa, and it laid basic guidelines for the claiming of territory in Africa as various European powers rushed to obtain as much land as possible. European countries wanted territory for new export markets, resource pools, lands for colonization, and to keep other European countries from getting the land and becoming too powerful. The conference resulted in the passing of the Berlin Act, an international agreement that required all European countries to respects each others' borders in Africa and established the entire continent as a free trade zone. No African people were invited to the conference.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.4 Global Migration

Indian National Congress Founded


The Indian National Congress was an example of Indian nationalism in response to British imperialism in India. The elected parliament had influence in India's government, giving Indian people a voice in how they were ruled, although British officials still had the most power.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Boer War

1899 - 1902

The Boer War, also called the South African War, was fought between British imperialists in their African colonies and Afrikaners. The British were looking to further exploit the gold and diamond deposits in South Africa and expand their territory North, and were met with resistance from the Afrikaners, who were looking to protect their land and their own interests in the face of European imperialism.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation

Boxer Rebellion


The Boxer Rebellion was a response of Chinese people to foreign economic imperialism in Qing China. European countries were exploiting the Qing government, and common people became increasingly angry about it, attacking various foreign officials and corrupt government officials. The Qing administration was too weak to put the rebellion down, however, and foreign powers had to intervene, showing how weakened and dependent on other states the Qing were.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Russo-Japanese War

1904 - 1905

Japan's victory in the Russo-Japanese war established them as a major world power. The two countries fought over territory in Manchuria, which Japan was looking to imperialize because it was a small, resource-poor island nation.

5.1 Industrialization and Global Capitalism; 5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation

Construction Of The Panama Canal

1904 - 1914

The construction of the Panama Canal exemplifies United States imperialism in South/Central America. The USA wanted a canal to be built to facilitate easier trade and communication between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and the ideal territory for such a canal was on land belonging to Colombia. Unfortunately, Colombia was unwilling to give the land to the US for the canal project. So the US sponsored a revolution in Colombia, creating the nation of Panama, and in return for the funding, Panama allowed the US to build their canal. This prompted President Roosevelt's Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine, which strengthened the USA's economic and military claims in the Western Hemisphere.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

All-India Muslim League Founded


The All-India Muslim League was similar to the Indian National Conference in that it was created by Indian people who wanted more say in their government. The Muslim League differed because, as the name suggests, its primary purpose was to protect the rights of Muslims in India (about 25% of the population), who were being increasingly overshadowed by the British and Hindu sections of India's government. The All-India Muslim League joined forces with the Indian National Congress in 1916, allowing them even more governmental influence.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform

Fall Of Qing Dynasty


The Qing Dynasty of China was becoming increasingly weakened as economic imperialism and internal struggles caused its continual deterioration. After the Opium War, Britain and various other European powers began claiming spheres of trade influence in China with unequal treaties that undermined Chinese sovereignty and China's position as a world power. In response to this, and China's refusal to modernize and industrialize itself, several internal problems arose. These rebellions, most notable the Boxer and the Taiping, further weakened China's central control of its land holdings. All of these factors led to the eventual end of Qing control of China.

5.2 Imperialism and Nation-State Formation; 5.3 Nationalism, Revolution and Reform