Question 4 - 11th Grade English Language Arts and Literacy: Writing Practice Test for the SBAC

Read the attached essay draft and answer this question about it.

Which three of the following sentences provide the best evidence to support the main idea of the paper?

  1. It has been estimated that 620,000 American soldiers died in the Civil War.

  2. The period following the Civil War is known as the Reconstruction Era when much of the South was rebuilt and the southern states were readmitted back to the United States.

  3. The Battle of Gettysburg is one of the most well-known Civil War battles.

  4. Also known as “The War Between the States,” the Civil War divided the nation over very fiery topics: the idea of central power and a federal government mandating state’s rights and the issue of slavery.

  5. The North was better equipped and had more men to fight than the South.

A student is writing a research report on the Civil War. Here is a draft of that report.

The American Civil War erupted after years of tension between the North and the South. Differing views on westward expansion, states’ rights, and possibly most notably slavery, Abraham Lincoln’s win in the 1860 presidential election was the trigger that sparked the war. Eleven states announced their secession from the Union and the Confederate States of America was born.

As the southern states banded together to fight for their rights against a president and government they feared was trying to abolish their way of life and ruin their economy, the Civil War pitted brother against brother in some cases. Those who supported the abolition of slavery supported the northern Union army. Those who saw value in slavery fought for the Confederate south. As shots were fired at Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, the deadliest war for American soldiers was officially underway.

The fighting would last another four years. Each side celebrated victories and suffered defeats during that time, but the North ultimately won. On April 9, 1865, three days shy of four years after it began, the Civil War came to an end. General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House in Appomattox County, Virginia.

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