Archive for October, 2009

Practice questions for 11-13 Test

The new two party system that emerged in the 1830s and 1840s
A. divided the nation further.
B. was seen at the time as a weakening of democracy.
C. resulted in the Civil War.
D. fulfilled the wishes of the founding fathers.
E. became an important part of the nation’s checks and balances.

One of the first lessons learned by the Jeffersonians after their victory in the election of 1800 was
A. the need to strengthen diplomatic ties with Great Britain.
B. to go off the gold standard to cause an increase in the money supply.
C. to decrease tariffs in order to make their southern supporters happy.
D. to institute an excise tax to punish westerners for their lack of support.
E. that it is easier to complain as the opposition party than to govern consistently.

As chief justice, John Marshall helped ensure that
A. states’ rights were protected.
B. the programs of Alexander Hamilton were overturned.
C. the political and economic systems were based on a strong central government.
D. both the Supreme Court and the president could declare a law unconstitutional.
E. Aaron Burr was convicted of treason.

Tecumseh argued that Indians should
A. never give control of their land to whites.
B. move west of the Mississippi River.
C. not cede control of land to whites unless all Indians agreed.
D. exchange traditional ways for European ways.
E. fight as individual tribes and maintain independence.

To guard American shores, Jefferson
A. built a fleet of frigates.            D. signed a peace treaty with Great Britain.
B. constructed coastal fortifications.        E. enlisted the aid of France.
C. constructed 200 tiny gunboats.

The “South Carolina Exposition” was
A. an attempt to destroy the Union.
B. a pamphlet that advocated manifest destiny.
C. a declaration of principles against slavery.
D. a fair celebrating the creation of Kentucky.
E. a pamphlet that advocated nullification.

Jackson and his supporters disliked the Bank of the United States for all of the following reasons EXCEPT
A. minted gold and silver coins but issued no paper money.
B. controlled much of the nation’s gold and silver
C. was a private institution.
D. foreclosed on many western farms.
E. put public service first, not profits.

The House of Representatives decided the 1824 presidential election when
A. no candidate received a majority of the vote in the Electoral College.
B. William Crawford suffered a stroke and was forced to drop out of the race.
C. the House was forced to decide using “King Caucus.”
D. widespread voter fraud was discovered.
E. Henry Clay, as speaker of the House, made the request.

As a result of the Missouri Compromise,
A. there were more free states than slave states in the Union.
B. slavery was outlawed in all states north of the 42nd parallel.
C. slavery was banned north of 36’ 30” in the Louisiana Territory.
D. Missouri was required to free its slaves when they reached adulthood.
E. there were more slave states than free states in the Union.

Possible Essay Questions– also good for review

These may be used for an essay on the test tomorrow, and they are definitely good to use to review for the test…. Enjoy these– they just cost me 160 bucks!!!!!

The Jacksonian Period (1824-1848) has been celebrated as the era of the “common man.”  To what extent did the period live up to its characterization?
Consider TWO of the following in your response:
Economic development
Reform movements

Analyze the contributions of TWO of the following in helping to establish a stable government after the adoption of the Constitution.
John Adams
Thomas Jefferson
George Washington

List and analyze the various situations that challenged American unity from 1750- 1840.

Henry Clay and the American System

Here is a very good article from this site:

Henry Clay: National Development Must Take Precedence Over Debt Payments
by Anton Chaitkin

On Feb. 2, 3, and 6, 1832, Sen. Henry Clay of Kentucky delivered a speech, entitled “In Defense of the American System, Against the British Colonial System.” Clay defended the American System of government-guided development of industry, from the attack of British agents of influence in northern and southern states.
Henry Clay had recently completed a term as U.S. Secretary of state (1825-29), in which post he had ably advanced and defended the joint interests and independence of the new republics in North and South America, urging the adoption of the anti-colonial principles of the American Revolution for all developing nations.

The instruments of the American System included: the Bank of the United States — run by American nationalists — controlling speculators and guaranteeing cheap credit for farmers and developers; tariffs to protect home industry against foreign trade war; and growing government expenditures for the creation of roads, canals, and rail lines.

South Carolina was threatening to secede from the Union unless the protective system were ended. The anti-national (“Free Trade” or what would today be termed a “pro-free market”) movement was led by the former U.S. Treasury Secretary Albert Gallatin of Switzerland. During his own long reign at the Treasury (1801-14), Gallatin had canceled the Founding Fathers’ industrial development program and had virtually dissolved the American armed forces, using the money instead to “try to pay off the national debt.”

“[The] decision on the system of policy embraced in this debate, involves the future destiny of this growing country. One way…it would lead to deep and general distress; general bankruptcy and national ruin; the other, the existing prosperity will be preserved and augmented, and the nation will continue rapidly to advance in wealth, power and greatness….
“Eight years ago, it was my painful duty to present to the other House of Congress, an unexaggerated picture of the general distress pervading the whole land. We must all yet remember some of its frightful features. We all know that the people were then oppressed and borne down by an enormous load of debt; that the value of property was at the lowest point of depression; that ruinous sales and sacrifices were everywhere made of real estate [such as forced sales of farms]; that stop laws and relief laws [i.e., debt moratoria] and paper money were adopted to save the people from impending destruction; that a deficit in the public revenue existed, which compelled Government to seize upon, and divert from its legitimate object, the appropriation to the sinking fund to redeem the national debt….

“[Today by contrast] we behold cultivation extended, the arts flourishing, the face of the country improved, our people fully and profitably employed…a People out of debt; land rising slowly in value, but in a secure and salutary degree; a ready, though not extravagant market for all the surplus productions of our industry; innumerable flocks and herds browsing and gamboling on ten thousand hills and plains, covered with rich and verdant grasses; our cities expanded, and whole villages springing up, as it were, by enchantment; our exports and imports increased and increasing; our tonnage [shipping], foreign and coastwise, swelling and fully occupied; the rivers of our interior animated by the perpetual thunder and lightning of countless steam boats; the currency sound and abundant; the public debt of two wars nearly redeemed; and, to crown all, the public treasury overflow- ing….

“This transformation of the condition of the country from gloom and distress to brightness and prosperity, has been mainly the work of American legislation, fostering American industry, instead of allowing it to be controlled by foreign legislation, cherishing foreign industry….

“It is now proposed to abolish the system, to which we owe so much of the public prosperity…I have been aware that, among those who were most eagerly pressing the payment of the public debt, and, upon that ground, were opposing appropriations to other great interests [i.e., to pay debts develop and defend the nation, there were some who cared less about the debt than [preventing] the accomplishment of other objects. But the People- of the United States, have not coupled the payment of their public debt with the destruction of the protection of their industry….If it is to be attended or followed by the subversion of the American system, and an exposure of our establishments and our productions to the unguarded consequences of the selfish policy of foreign Powers, the payment of the public debt will be the bitterest of curses. Its fruit will be like the fruit “Of that forbidden tree, whose mortal taste “Brought death into the world, and all our woe, “With loss of Eden.” ” …[There] is scarcely an interest, scarcely a vocation in society, which is not embraced by the beneficence of this system [of govemment promotion and deliberate development]…. ” …When gentlemen have succeeded in their design of an immediate or gradual destruction of the American System, what is their substitute? Free trade! Free trade! The call for free trade, is as unavailing as the cry of a spoiled child, in its nurse’s arms, for the moon or the stars that glitter in the firinament of heaven. It never has existed; it never will exist….

“Gentlemen deceive themselves. It is not free trade that they are recommending to our acceptance. It is, in effect, the British colonial system that we are invited to adopt; and, if their policy prevail, it will lead, substantially, to the recolonization of these States, under the commercial dominion of Great Britain. And whom do we find some of the principal supporters, out of Congress, of this foreign system? Mr. President, there are some foreigners who always remain exotics, and never become naturalized in our country: whilst, happily, there are many others who readily attach themselves to our principles and our institutions….

“But, Sir, the gentleman [Albert Gallatin…or Henry Kissinger?] to whom I am about to allude, although long a resident of this country, has no feelings, no attachments, no sympathies, no principles, in common with our People. Nearly fifty years ago, Pennsylvanias took him to her bosom, and warmed, and cherished, and honored him; and how does he manifest his gratitude? By aiming a vital blow at a system endeared to her by a thorough conviction that it is indispensable to its prosperity. . . .

“To [recommend] the. . . theories by Mr. Gallatin…to favorable consideration. . . [South Carolina’s Senator Robert Y. Hayne] has cited a speech by my Lord Goderich, addressed to the British Parliament, in favor of free trade….I dislike this resort to authority, and especially foreign and interested authority, for the support of principles of public policy. I would greatly prefer to meet gentlemen on the broad ground of fact, of experience, and of reason; but since they will appeal to British names and authority, I feel myself compelled to imitate their bad example. Allow me to quote from the speech of a member of the British Parliament, bearing the same family name with my Lord Goderich…: “It was idle for us to endeavor to persuade other nations to join with us in adopting the principles of what was called ‘free trade.’ Other nations knew…what we meant by ‘free trade’ was nothing more nor less than…to prevent them, one and all, from ever becoming manufacturing nations….The policy that France acted on, was that of encouraging its native manufactures, and it was a wise policy; because if it were freely to admit our manufactures, it would speedily be reduced to the rank of an agricultural nation; and therefore a poor nation, as all must be that depend exclusively upon agriculture. America acted too upon the same principle with France. America legislated for futurity — legislated for an increasing population…since the peace, France, Germany, America, and all the other countries of the world, had proceeded upon the principle of encouraging and protecting native manufactures.”

“But I have said that the system nominally called “free trade”…is a mere revival of the British colonial system, forced upon us by Great Britain during the existence of our colonial vassalage. The whole system is fully explained and illustrated in a work published as far back as 1750, entitled “The trade and navigation of Great Britain considered, by Joshua Gee”….In that work the author contends–

“That manufactures, in the American colonies, should be discouraged or prohibited…we ought always to keep a watchful eye over our colonies, to restrain them from setting up any of the manufactures which are carried on in Britain; and any such attempts should be crushed in the beginning: for, if they are suffered to grow up to maturity, it will be difficult to suppress them….

“The advantages to Great Britain from keeping the colonists dependent upon her for their essential supplies…not one-fourth part of their product redounds to their own profit: for, out of all that comes here, they only carry back clothing and other accommodations for their families; all of which is the merchandise and manufacture of this kingdom….

“All these advantages we receive by the plantations, besides the mortgages on the planters’ estates, and the high interest they pay us, which is very considerable; and therefore very great care ought to be taken, in regulating all affairs of the colonists, that the planters be not put under too many difficulties, but encouraged to go on cheerfully.”

But the British colonial authorities had taken no heed of warnings, and had squeezed the American colonists beyond their endurance. The Americans had fought back in the Revolution of 1775-1782. British cavalrymen had broken into and ransacked the house of the four-year-old Henry Clay, who watched while enemy soldiers thrust swords into the grave of his recently-dead father, looking for treasure.
Senator Clay remembered these scenes, while recommending to his countrymen the American over the British system of economics

The development of the national banking system 1791-1836

The First Bank of the United States was born in 1791 in the aftermath of the Revolutionary War, and was part of Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton’s plan to unite the country economically. In 1811, the First Bank of the US ceased operations when Congress allowed its charter to expire in light of continued arguments about its constitutionality and charges that it was undemocratic. However, after the United States fought the War of 1812, and once again, as in the Revolution, faced problems with inflation and paying war expenses, a Second Bank of the United States was chartered. Problems facing the country included a lack of a national currency and spiraling inflation. The headquarters of the Bank was in Philadelphia, which helped make this city the financial center of the growing US economy.

The First BUS had helped check unregulated state banks demanding than any worthless paper money issued by these banks would have to be redeemed in gold or silver coin. Once the First BUS was gone, however, worthless paper money once again was issued and inflation exploded again. Businesses and manufacturers would often refuse to accept this money outright or would sometimes discount its value by as much as 40%.

By the end of the War of 1812, the US Treasury teetered on the verge of bankruptcy because it was forced by law to accept this useless paper currency as tax payments—thus, it became a kind of repository of worthless money. In addition, often, federal officials were unable to use money collected in one part of the country to pay debts owed in other parts of the country. This situation forced even Congressmen who had previously opposed the First BUS to support the creation of the Second BUS. It was argued that solving the crisis was a matter of patriotism. Speaker of the House Henry Clay, who had led the charge against the First BUS, admitted publicly that he had been wrong and that he now believed that Congress had the power to charter a national bank after all. The Second BUS was given a twenty-year charter capitalized with the then-enormous sum of $35 million, and was the holder of all federal deposits. It was empowered to issue paper currency and had the ability, essentially, to set interest rates for the nation. It was able to use its power to halt the issuance of worthless paper currency by some state banks, thus curtailing their ability to make loans and placing them at a competitive disadvantage with the BUS. Although it could make short-term loans to state banks, its primary function was  to limit the amount of credit issued by those same state banks.The second Bank of the United States would grow in power – so much power, that, once again, when its charter neared expiration in the early 1830s, it had become the object of much hatred.

The Panic of 1819 was blamed upon the actions of the Second BUS in attempting to limit credit. Andrew Jackson made opposition to the BUS one of his first priorities upon his election. Jackson’s great adversary decided to try to forestall any action by Jackson against the Bank by pushing the Bank’s chairman, Nicholas Biddle, into seeking an early renewal of the Bank’s charter since there was support in both the House and the Senate as well as support in Jackson’s cabinet for the Bank (barring Jackson and his Attorney General, Roger Taney). When Jackson was presented with the recharter bill, he initiated the Bank War of 1832-34 when he vetoed  the bill and vehemently criticized the bank as the tool of a wealthy eastern elite.

In his veto message, Jackson even criticized the growing power of the Supreme Court, which had declared the Bank constitutional in the 1819 case of McCulloch v.Maryland. He claimed, “The opinion of the judges has no more authority over Congress than the opinion of Congress has over the judges, and on that point the President is independent of both.” Jackson believed that as someone elected by the people, he, rather than appointed judges, should be able to determine the constitutionality of laws and institutions. This position would have magnified the current understanding of executive power far beyond what any previous president had claimed. This astounding stance even caused rivals like Clay, Webster, and Calhoun to denounce Jackson’s attempted power grab, and many began to denounce Jackson as King Andrew. Despite the criticism from politicians, many of the common people that Jackson claimed he represented were willing to agree with his criticism of what he called  “the hydra headed monster,” and Jackson overwhelmingly won re-election in 1832. In November of that year, Jackson announced his intention to withdraw all federal funds from the BUS and placing all federal money in smaller state banks, known as “pet banks.” Nicholas Biddle tried to force Jackson’s hand by tightening credit under the explanation of having to deal with the withdrawal of funds, but he continued the policy even after the temporary crisis had passed as a political ploy. This triggered a recession, and some people from all over the country called on the Jackson to reverse his policy and restore the bank’s deposits. Jackson refused, and the crisis backfired on Biddle when the Bank was then the subject of a series of harsh resolutions criticizing the Bank for the chaos caused by shrinking the credit market. All Jackson then had to do was wait until the charter expired in 1836. The Second Bank of the US then itself became a state bank—the United States Bank of Pennsylvania—which would go bankrupt just five years later.

The end result of Jackson’s fiscal policies included an inundation of questionable paper money into the economy once the BUS was no longer there to check this destructive habit. Land speculation in the West became so superheated that Jackson eventually tried to use his Specie Circular of July 1836 to slow inflation as he demanded that all federal lands be bought with specie of silver or gold rather than paper money. This had the consequence of shutting all but wealthy speculators out of the land market in the West, and left eastern banks perilously short of specie as it was used to purchase Western lands. The government had meanwhile accumulated a surplus of funds from its high tariffs, and Jackson decided to distribute the extra funds to the states under the Distribution Act (since there was no longer a national bank in which to deposit this money). These so-called “loans” were quickly spent, mostly on internal improvements, with no intention of being paid back. Although this helped expand the transportation system nationally, it also led to more inflation as more specie was once again drained from the “pet banks” to pay for investments in the West. It would be nearly three decades before another national banking system was even attempted.