Voting Restrictions in a “Democratic” United States

Cartoon - Bosses of the Senate by Joseph Keppler

This lesson is for 8th grade student who have completed their units on the Civil War and Reconstruction. The goal of this lesson is for students to analyze the historical context of voter restrictions and to make connections to current day examples of voting rights restrictions. Students will learn about the history of literacy tests, take a sample literacy test used to restrict voting rights of American Americans, and conclude the lesson with a discussion analyzing voter restrictions within a country founded on democratic principles. 

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Origins Content
Teaching Standard
ONLS 8.16; CCSS 68.6
Teaching Area
US History to 1877
US History since 1877
African American History
American Government
Grade Level
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