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American Civil War the war between the northern states (usually known as the Union) and the Confederate states of the South, 1861–5.The war was fought over the issues of slavery and states' rights. The pro-slavery Southern states seceded from the Federal Union following the election of Abraham Lincoln on an anti-slavery platform, but were defeated by the North after failing to gain foreign recognition.

American dream the traditional social ideals of the United States, such as equality, democracy, and material prosperity; the term is recorded from the 1930s.

good Americans when they die go to Paris mid 19th-century saying, encapsulating a view of Paris as the home of fashion and elegance, originally attributed to the American epigrammatist Thomas Gold Appleton (1812–84).

War of American Independence the war of 1775–83 in which the American colonists won independence from British rule. The war was triggered by resentment of the economic policies of Britain, particularly the right of Parliament to tax the colonies. Following disturbances such as the Boston Tea Party of 1773, fighting broke out in 1775; a year later the Declaration of Independence was signed. The British army surrendered at Yorktown in 1781.

See also American as apple pie.

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