AMERICAN HISTORY
End of Course Exam Study Guide
Page 6

98.Sun Records:  Record company in Memphis that produced records for Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and other Rock and Roll and Rhythm and Blues musicians.

99.Stax Records:  Record company in Memphis that produced records for many important musicians, particularly African-Americans, and helped make soul music popular.

100.    Elvis Presley:  One of the first and most influential Rock and Roll musicians.  He was able to combine traditional White and Black folk, gospel, blues, and other music to shape Rock and Roll.

101.    Estes Kefauver:  Senator from Tennessee who refused to sign the Southern Manifesto, a document drawn up by many Southern politicians opposing desegregation.  He became famous in 1950 for leading the Senate Special Committee to Investigate Crime in Interstate Commerce, also known as the Kefauver Committee, which led to the conviction of many leaders of organised crime and ruined the careers of politicians associated with them.  He nearly got the Democratic presidential nomination in 1952 and 1956 and did run as for vice-president in both of those years.  He eventually was forced from office due to his support of Civil Rights.

102.    Sam Walton:  Arkansas businessman who founded Wal-Mart and Sam's Club.  Wal-Mart grew into the largest company in the world and has stores around the globe.  In many places it provides very cheap goods in a wide variety, but it also puts local businesses that cannot buy in the bulk it does out of business and it pays its employees very little and avoids paying them benefits when possible.

103.    Michael Dell:  Founded Dell Computers, which began selling computers directly to customers rather than through stores, allowing customers to save money and have more choice in what kind of computer they would have.  It played a large role in making the personal computer widespread.

104.    Ray Kroc:  Turned McDonald's into a nation-wide fast-food chain through the franchise system, in which local businessmen purchase the right to use the company's name and methods (which include turning out food by a standardised, assembly-line method) and agree to buy their supplies from the national company, allowing the chain to spread while ensuring that its products are uniform across the country.  Today McDonald's is the world's largest chain of fast-food hamburger restaurants. 

105.    Lee Iococca:  Executive at Ford and later Chrysler who revived Chrysler's business in the 1980s after the decline of the American automobile industry in the 1970s.  He saved Chrysler in large part by convincing Congress in 1979 to bail out the failing company to save American jobs.  He also introduced cheap, fuel-efficient compact cars during the recession of the early 1980s and sold the first minivan, which became the best-selling type of car throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

106.    Donald Trump:  Real estate developer and businessman who recovered from bankruptcy in the late 1980s and 1990s, partly through using his famous name in the entertainment industry.

107.    Bill Gates:  Founder of Microsoft, which created MS-DOS and later Windows, two of the most widely-used operating systems in personal computers.  Windows eventually became so dominant that Microsoft was tried on charges of monopolising the computer industry by packaging other programmes with Windows.  It became dominant because it was so easy to use and because other companies were allowed to write programs that would run on it, in contrast to Apple Computers for much of their early history.

108.    Steve Jobs:  Co-founder of Apple Computers, which released the Macintosh in 1984, the first computer to have a graphical user interface that the user controlled with a mouse rather than by typing (soon copied by Microsoft Windows).  Apple had problems in the 1990s, but brought back Steve Jobs (who had left the company), who designed more stylish computers and other devices such as the iMac (1998), iPod (2001), iPhone (2007), and iPad (2010).

109.    Jeff Bezos:  Founder of Amazon.com, one of the first and most successful on-line businesses.

110.    NAFTA:  The North American Free Trade Agreement, created by Presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton.  It went into force in 1994, removing most trade barriers between the US, Mexico, and Canada, allowing each country to specialise in what it could produce most efficiently.  It also led to the loss of many American jobs as companies began to manufacture more products in Mexico where labour costs were lower.



This page last updated 7 December, 2011.
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