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History: Chapter 10

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Property and Democracy
By 1860, all but one state had eliminated property requirements for voting.
The Dorr War
- Rhode Island had property qualifications for voting in 1841.
- Because propertyless wage earners (e.g., factory workers) could not vote, the state's labor movement pushed for reform at the People's Convention (October 1841).
1) This extralegal convention adopted a new state constitution that enfranchised all white men.
2) Reformers inaugurated Thomas Dorr as governor.
3) President Tyler sent in federal troops and the Dorr movement collapsed.
Tocqueville on Democracy
- By 1840, more than 90 percent of adult white men were eligible to vote.
- Democratic political institutions came to define the nation's sense of its own identity.
- Tocqueville identified democracy as an essential attribute of American freedom.
The Information Revolution
- Steam power helped the proliferation of the penny press.
- Reduction in printing costs also resulted in alternative newspapers.
The Limits of Democracy
- The "principle of universal suffrage" meant that "white males of age constituted the political nation."
- How could the word "universal" be reconciled with barring blacks and women from political participation?
A Racial Democracy
- Despite increased democracy in America, blacks were seen as a group apart.
- Blacks were often portrayed as stereotypes.
- Blacks were not allowed to vote in most states.
- In effect, race had replaced class as the boundary that separated those American men who were entitled to enjoy political freedom from those who were not.
The American System
- The War of 1812 inspired an outburst of nationalist pride, but also revealed how far the United States still was from being a truly integrated nation.
- In 1815, President James Madison put forward a blueprint for government-promoted economic development that came to be known as the American System.
1) New national bank
2) Tariffs
3) Federal financing for better roads and canals ("internal improvements")
- President Madison became convinced that allowing the national government to exercise powers not mentioned in the Constitution would prove dangerous to individual liberty and southern interests.
Banks and Money
- The Second Bank of the United States was a profit-making corporation that served the government, issuing paper money, collecting taxes, and paying the government's debts.
- The Bank of the United States was supposed to prevent the over issuance of money.
The Panic of 1819
- The Bank of the United States participated in a speculative fever that swept the country after the War of 1812 ended.
- Early in 1819, as European demand for American farm products returned to normal levels, the economic bubble burst.
- The Panic of 1819 disrupted the political harmony of the previous years.
- Americans continued to distrust banks.
The Supreme Court ruled in McCulloch v. Maryland that the Bank of the United States was constitutional according to the "necessary and proper" clause.
The Missouri Controversy
- James Monroe's two terms as president were characterized by the absence of two-party competition ("The Era of Good Feelings").
- The absence of political party disputes was replaced by sectional disputes.
- Missouri petitioned for statehood in 1819.
Debate arose over slavery.
The Missouri Compromise was adopted by Congress in 1820.
- Missouri was admitted to the Union as a slave state and, to maintain sectional balance, Maine was admitted as a free state.
- Congress prohibited slavery north of the 36¡30' latitude (Missouri's southern boundary) in remaining Louisiana Purchase territory.
- The Missouri debate highlighted that the westward expansion of slavery was a passionate topic that might prove to be hazardous to national unity.
The United States and the Latin American Wars of Independence
- Between 1810 and 1822, Spain's Latin American colonies rose in rebellion and established a series of independent nations.
- In 1822, the Monroe administration became the first government to extend diplomatic recognition to the new Latin American republics.
- In some ways, Latin American constitutions were more democratic than the U.S. Constitution.
1) Allowed Indians and free blacks to vote
The Monroe Doctrine
- Fearing that Spain would try to regain its colonies, Secretary of State John Quincy Adams drafted the Monroe Doctrine.
1) No new European colonization of the New World.
2) The United States would abstain from European wars.
3) Europeans should not interfere with new Latin American republics.
The Election of 1824
- Andrew Jackson was the only candidate in the 1824 election to have national appeal.
- None of the four candidates received a majority of the electoral votes.
1) The election fell to the House of Representatives.
2) Henry Clay supported John Quincy Adams.
3) Clay's "corrupt bargain" gave Adams the White House.
The Nationalism of John Quincy Adams
- John Quincy Adams enjoyed one of the most distinguished pre-presidential careers of any American president.
- Adams had a clear vision of national greatness.
1) Supported the American system
2) Wished to enhance American influence in the Western Hemisphere
"Liberty Is Power"
- Adams held a view of federal power far more expansive than most of his contemporaries.
1) Stated that "liberty is power"
- His plans alarmed many.
Martin Van Buren and the Democratic Party
- Adams's political rivals emphasized:
1) Individual liberty
2) States' rights
3) Limited government
- Martin Van Buren viewed political party competition as - a necessary and positive influence to achieve national unity.
The Election of 1828
- By 1828, Van Buren had established the political apparatus of the Democratic Party.
- Andrew Jackson campaigned against John Quincy Adams in 1828.
- A far higher percentage of the eligible electorate voted in 1828 than before, and Jackson won a resounding victory.
Jacksonian Democracy or the Age of Jackson, Rise of democracy and the new two party system
- Expanded suffrage: many more men were voting as compared to 1824, and many were "common" men
- Increased number of voters provided a greater voice to the people; however, it also exposed the true political divisions nationwide
- Rise of National Republicans (led by Clay, Calhoun, and Daniel Webster) and Democratic Republicans (led by Jackson and Van Buren): National Republicans would eventually become the Whigs, while Democratic Republicans would become Democrats
- Jackson elected due to his appeal the common man. He also symbolized the American ideal that any man, regardless of his upbringing, could carve out his own path.
- After 1828, the American public came to identify with their party as opposed to a single personality
- Increase in democracy gave more of a voice to many white men, but at the same time helped to divide the union
Jackson in office
- Jeffersonian ideals of limited federal government and agrarian expansionism became the backbone of Jackson's presidency
1) Government was predominantly laissez-faire
2) Patronage or the spoils system was greatly supported by Jackson; Jackson, therefore, surrounded himself with like-minded advisors
3)Regarding agrarian expansion, Indian policy in the West, therefore, became a priority
Democrats and Whigs
- Democrats and Whigs differed on issues that emerged from the market revolution.
- Democrats favored no government intervention in the economy.
- Whigs supported government promotion of economic development through the American System.
Public and Private Freedom
- The party battles of the Jacksonian era reflected the clash between public and private definitions of - American freedom and their relationship to governmental power.
- Democrats supported a weak federal government, championing individual and states' rights.
1) Reduced expenditures
2) Reduced tariffs
3) Abolished the national bank
- Democrats opposed attempts to impose a unified moral vision on society.
-Whigs believed that a strong federal government was necessary to promote liberty.
-Whigs argued that government should promote morality to foster the welfare of the people.
South Carolina and the Tariff of Abominations (1828)
- Jefferson Day Dinner Toast: "Our federal Union: It must be preserved!"
Nullification Crisis
- The issue of federal power versus states' rights resurfaced - Calhoun, as VP, had in 1828 authored the South Carolina Exposition and Protest, the blueprint for the defense of nullification
- Jackson: "Disunion by armed force is treason."
- Force Bill enacted to enforce law: compromise finally reached due to the masterful work of Henry Clay, but the issue of who possessed the power was far from settled
- Nullification crisis became a foreshadowing of what was to come
- Jackson's first term was dominated by a battle to uphold the supremacy of federal over state law.
Tariff of 1828
- South Carolina led the charge for a weakened federal government in part from fear that a strong federal government might act against slavery.
- Jackson considered nullification an act of disunion.
- When South Carolina nullified the tariff in 1832, Jackson responded with the Force Bill.
- A compromise tariff (1833) resolved the crisis.
- Calhoun left the Democratic Party for the Whigs.
May 1830: Maysville Road Veto
- The veto of a bill to allocate federal funds for a road from Maysville to Lexington in Kentucky, was cast by President Andrew Jackson on 27 May 1830.
Indian policy
- The expansion of cotton and slavery led to forced relocation of Indians.
1) Indian Removal Act of 1830 and Jackson's Annual Message to Congress
2) Five Civilized Tribes
- The law marked a repudiation of the Jeffersonian idea that civilized Indians could be assimilated into the American population.
- Prohibition of abolitionist literature in the South - direct violation of Constitution
The Supreme Court and the Indians
- The Cherokees went to court to protect their rights.
1) Cherokee Nation v. Georgia
2) Worcester v. Georgia
- John Ross led Cherokee resistance.
1) Trail of Tears (journey of Cherokees from Georgia to Oklahoma)
- The Seminoles fought a war against removal (1835-1842).
- The supreme court sided with the Cherokee, but Andrew Jackson claimed that the Indians weren't an actual nation and encouraged Georgia to ignore the ruling
Bank Wars
1) Jackson saw the BUS as a "monster" and the cause of the Panic of 1819
2) He wanted to destroy it for he felt its benefits to the economy were insufficient to be worth saving it
3) Jackson's opponents used the rechartering of the bank as an opportunity to try to embarrass Jackson prior to the 1832 election; their efforts failed when he turned it around on them
4) Jackson's Veto Message to recharter the bank
5) Jackson's dismantling of the BUS contributed significantly to their being a major panic beginning in 1837: Panic of 1837
1837
1837: Martin van Buren, Jackson's hand-picked successor, took office; one month later, the Panic of 1837 hit
Van Buren attempted to fix the economic downslide by creating an independent treasury system to deal with the bank problems, however his solution was adopted too late in his term to save his political career
1840: William H. Harrison, the "hero" of Tippecanoe, was elected president; he died 30 days into his term
The Party System
- Politics had become a spectacle.
- Party machines emerged.
1) Spoils system
- National conventions chose candidates.