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The Rise of Manufacturing (1820-1845) for AP US History (page 2)

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By — McGraw-Hill Professional
Updated on Mar 3, 2011

The Monroe Doctrine

The Monroe Doctrine estimated the fact that America now was beginning to consider itself a major world power, announced by President Monroe in 1823. Many Latin American nations had announced their independence in the Napoleonic era, and many in Latin America and in the United States felt that the Spanish and the French might send armies to reassert their control of the region. The Monroe Doctrine stated that countries in the Western Hemisphere were now off-limits to European control. (These states "henceforth are not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers.")

Policy Toward Native Americans

In 1824, President James Monroe proposed that all Native Americans be moved west of the Mississippi River. Conflict had continued east of the Mississippi between settlers and various Native American tribes. Even though tribes had signed legal treaties for land, settlement constantly encroached on Native American territories. Monroe claimed that his proposal would benefit the Native Americans, stating that settlers would never bother them as long as they settled west of the Mississippi River. Some tribes, such as the Cherokee, adopted systems of government similar to those used in many states, but even that did not stave off the pressure for removal.

The state of Georgia pressured the Cherokee to sell the land they held in that state. The Cherokee felt they held a valid treaty for the land that they lived on and decided to take their case to the federal court system. In an 1831 decision, Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, Chief Justice Marshall stated that Native Americans had no real standing in court, since they were not a state or a foreign country. Nevertheless, Marshall affirmed that the Cherokee had a right to the lands that they possessed.

The Constitution states that it is the job of the executive branch to enforce the laws or decisions of the other two branches. Andrew Jackson was now president, and a large part of his reputation was based on his successful fights against the Indians. Jackson declined to take action to enforce this decision, stating "John Marshall has made his decision: let him enforce it." In his inaugural speech, Jackson affirmed his support for Native American removal. During the War of 1812, Jackson led troops against the Creek tribe. As a result, the Creeks lost over 60 percent of their tribal lands. Congress had already passed and Jackson signed the Removal Act of 1830, which authorized the removal of all tribes east of the Mississippi.

Tribes were forced to move beginning in 1831; the horrors of these journeys, sometimes undertaken during winter months, are very well documented. In 1838, the Cherokees were finally marched west at gunpoint in what is now called the Trail of Tears; nearly one-third died of disease or exhaustion along the way. Many Native Americans were never able to adjust to the alien environment found west of the Mississippi. Indian resistance continued in Florida until 1841.

The Second Great Awakening

The rise of industry, the growing commercialization of cities, and westernization, all fundamentally altered America in the years 1800 to 1830. Transportation was rapidly changing; a National Road linked the Potomac and the Ohio rivers, and the Erie Canal was completed in 1825. The lives of vast numbers of ordinary people were being altered as a result of these economic and social changes.

In the midst of these transformations, the Second Great Awakening reaffirmed the role of religion in the lives of believers. The movement began in the late 1790s and reached its zenith in the 1830s. Where earlier Calvinist preachers had spoken of predestination, preachers of this era such as Timothy Dwight and Charles Finney proclaimed that one's actions on Earth played at least some role in the individual's fate after death. During this period, revival meetings, some lasting as long as a week, would cause followers to faint, speak in tongues, or writhe uncontrollably. The Second Great Awakening began as a rural phenomenon, but by the 1820s it spread to the cities as well. Evangelical sects such as the Methodists and the Baptists also grew in popularity.

Women played a significant role in the revivalism of the era. Many women became dedicated Christians and worked as volunteers for Protestant churches. In addition, many of these churches set up "academies" to educate women.

Other Reform Movements

Many individuals involved in the religious fervor of the era wanted to use that enthusiasm to reform society. Many wanted to act to improve the lives of those living in the cities and others with disadvantages. Dorothea Dix campaigned for better treatment of the mentally ill in the 1830s and 1840s. A prison reform movement also developed. In addition, a large temperance movement developed in this period, urging the working class to not drink in excess. Individuals such as Horace Mann spoke out for formal education for all children, the expansion of the school year, and the need for rigorous standards of teacher training.

Many Christians, especially in the North, began to speak out forcefully about the treatment of American slaves. In the 1820s and 1830s, the abolitionist movement gained a large number of supporters. Abolitionists considered slavery to be a sin. The most prominent abolitionist was William Lloyd Garrison, who founded The Liberator, his antislavery newspaper, in 1831. Some were against slavery for other reasons. The American Colonization Society, founded in the South in 1817, opposed slavery on the grounds that it encouraged contact between blacks and whites; members of this organization urged slave owners to free their slaves and return them to Africa.

Frederick Douglass, an ex-slave, was another leader of the abolitionist movement, who in 1845 would write the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, a key text for those who opposed slavery. In 1831, Nat Turner, a slave in Virginia, organized a bloody slave revolt that killed 60 whites. As was the case in the Stono Rebellion, the revolt was brutally repressed, and Black Codes and other restrictions on slaves in Southern states became more harsh.

Political Reform: The Jacksonian Era (1829–1841)

Alexis de Tocqueville and other visitors from Europe noticed a different spirit in America than what existed in European countries. Tocqueville viewed with wonder the egalitarian system that he observed in virtually all aspects of American life. Many political changes both before and during the presidency of Andrew Jackson accentuated the sense that the "common man" reigned in this era.

Changes were already taking place in how presidential candidates were chosen. In 1800, only five states chose electors to the Electoral College by popular vote. By 1824, 18 out of 24 states chose electors in this manner. By the 1824 campaign, banners, posters, buttons, and hats were commonplace (the 1828 campaign was the first time when these were mass-produced).

In addition, more and more people could vote. By 1824, property qualification, long a method to keep the "rabble" away from the political process, had been eliminated in most states. Blacks (even free blacks in the North) and women were still excluded from the political process.

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