Archive for the ‘Territorial Expansion’ Category

Map of the US in 1840


A Link about the connection between the 1840s and the Civil War

Americans during the 1840s experienced many events that pushed the US inexorably toward the final showdown with the South. In this link, Professor Waldo E. Martin, a professor at the University of California at Berkeley, discusses the linkages between Manifest Destiny and the Civil War:

The entire set of pages containing this  review begins here ( and contains audiovisuals including maps to help you review the time period from 1848-1860.

Chapter 17 questions

Chapter 17 questions
Due Monday.
Answer fully, specifically, and in your own words. Answers must be handwritten. INCLUDE DATES WHERE AT ALL POSSIBLE!!!! That means put the dates next to events!

1. What was the origin and meaning of the term “Manifest Destiny?” What overriding question would interfere in the pursuit of our “Manifest Destiny?
2. Who were the real leaders of the Whig Party? How did they view Harrison, and why? What kinds of people belonged to the “minority wing” of the party?
3. Why did John Tyler become a Whig? What exactly were his political beliefs and inclinations (look up the meaning of the phrase “lone wolf” to help)? Why had he been placed on the 1840 ticket?
4. How did Tyler become president? What stance did he take toward many Whig programs, especially the independent treasury system and tariffs? What happened to his cabinet, and why?
5. Let’s talk about nicknames….What euphemisms did the Whigs use to try to sneak a new Bank of the US across Tyler? What did angry Whigs call Tyler, and what was the “Tyler grippe?” What were the specific consequences of his veto of a new central banking system, whatever the name?
6. Why did Whigs support tariffs (we have talked about this before in the chapter on Jackson)? What did the Tariff of 1842 do to tariff rates?
7. How did American economic expansion lead to resentment of Britain?
8. Explain how specific events (Canadian insurrection, the Caroline affair, the McLeod affair, the Creole affair, Aroostook War, Oregon joint resolution, etc.) influence British- American relations during the years between the War of 1812 and the Civil War (You might want to make a cause-effect chart)? What was the “Third War with England?”
9. What was the purpose of the Webster-Ashburton Treaty, and what were its effects?
10. How and why did the British interfere in Texas? What about the French? What role did cotton play?
11. Explain how Texas was eventually annexed. Which president actually oversaw the annexation, and how? What effect did that have on American relations with Mexico? Why were abolitionists opposed to annexation (I have already explained this—remember?)?
12. Exactly what were the original boundaries of the Oregon Country? How many countries had originally had claims in this area? What were the British and American claims based upon? How did missionaries influence America claims?
13. What is the relationship between the Anglo-American Convention of 1818 and the “joint occupation” plan? How did “Oregon fever” doom “joint occupation?” What exactly was the area in dispute? What group most supported annexation of the entire Oregon country, and why?
14. Why was James K. Polk the answer to the Democrats’ deadlock in 1844? What were his positives? What was the specific Democratic platform that year?
15. What were Clay’s positives and negatives in 1844? How was Texas his Achilles’ heel?
16. Explain each of the four points on Polk’s “must list.”
17. Why was Polk willing to accept the 49th parallel offer from Britain regarding the Oregon country? Why were the British willing to deal?
18. What role did California and Texas play in our tensions with Mexico? What were the specific grips between our two countries? What was John Slidell supposed to do?
19. How exactly did Polk force a showdown with Mexico? Why exactly did we go to war? How did slavery influence Mexican actions?
20. Explain “American blood has been spilled on American soil!” Explain “spotty Lincoln’s” response.
21. Explain why the “Conscience Whigs” opposed the war. What did the Wilmot Proviso attempt to do?
21. Summarize the roles that each of these military men played in the war with Mexico: Santa Anna, Stephen Kearney, Zachary Taylor, John C. Fremont, and Winfield Scott.
22. What were the terms of the Treaty of Guadalupe- Hidalgo? How did Nicholas Trist make the negotiations much more interesting?
23. What were the specific effects of the Mexican War? Consider territorial expansion, military experience, and of course the slavery controversy in your answer.
24. What specific role did the Catholic Church play in the settlement of Mexico by Europeans as well as on the treatment of the indigenous people who lived there? What happened at Sutter’s Mill in 1848?

Territorial Acquisitions for the United States

Treaties and Purchases that have made the US what it is today….


1. 1783-Peace of Paris– the treaty that ended the American Revolution established the newly independent US at being bounded on the north by Canada, on the South by Spanish Florida, on the east by the Atlantic, and on the west by the Mississippi River. These terms, especially about the boundary of Canada, were not very well defined, however. In fact, the US did not permanently settle its border with Canada until 1925!


2. 1803– Louisiana Purchase Treaty– the boundary of the US is moved from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains, containing the western watershed of the Mississippi River including the Missouri, a major tributary.


3. 1818- Convention of 1818– treaty with Britain allowing joint occupation of the Oregon Country for ten years, established the 49th parallel as the northern boundary of that part of the US that had been gained through the Louisiana Purchase from the Lake of the Woods to the Rockies. We therefore gave up part of what is now southern Alberta province to the US. This treaty also including the gain of fishing rights off eastern Canada for the US.


4. 1819- Adams-Onis Treaty (Florida Purchase Treaty)- Spain gave Florida to the US in exchange for the US payment of $5 million in claims by citizens against the Spanish and giving up part of some claims to Texas along the Sabine River.


5. 1820- Maine gains statehood as part of the Missouri Compromise, but its border with Canada is disputed. Although the King of the Netherlands was called in to try to negotiate a settlement, that treaty was rejected by the US Senate. The border will not be settled until 1842 after the Aroostook War….


6. 1842- Webster-Ashburton Treaty – After the Aroostook or Lumberjack War, our secretary of state, Daniel Webster, opened negotiations with Alexander Baring, Baron Ashburton. The boundary between Maine and Canada all along the Great Lakes, to the Lake of the Woods was determined. Of the 12,000 square miles of disputed territory, the US got 7,000 and  Britain got 5,000.


7. 1845- Texas is annexed by a joint resolution in the lame duck period of president Tyler’s administration. President-elect Polk had already made it clear that he was in favor of annexation as a part of the doctrine of what would later be known as Manifest Destiny. Texas- boundaries at the time includes parts of New Mexico and Colorado as far as the southern boundary of the Oregon Country.


8. 1846- Oregon Treaty– The southern half of the Oregon Country is ceded to the US on June 15 as rthe US prepared for war with Mexico. The US does not insist on its claim of “54’40° or Fight,” but instead continues the 49th parallel, approximately as the boundary between the US and Canada to the Pacific, with Canada also receiving all of  Vancouver Island.


9. 1848- Treaty of Guadelupe-Hidalgo– Mexico cedes the Mexican Cession after they are defeated in the Mexican War. The US receives Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and the remainder of Colorado west of the Rockies. Texas’ current boundary will later be fixed as part of the Compromise of 1850.


10. 1853- Gadsden Purchase– the Southern boundaries of Arizona and New Mexico is purchased from Mexico (supposedly to allow a southern route for the proposed transcontinental railroad). The US paid $10,000,000 for approximately 30,000 square miles of cactus, sand, and lizards, just so that Southerners would stop standing in the way of passage of a transcontinental railroad bill. What wouldn’t we do to mollify the Southerners?


11. 1867- Alaska Purchase Treaty– Secretary of State Seward was accused of folly when he purchased Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million dollars for approximately 586,000 square miles of frozen tundra and rainforest—oh, and gold and oil. That worked out to about two cents an acre, by the way. Russia was willing to deal because they were afraid that their weakness after the Crimean War would enable the US to take it without compensation.


12. 1898- Hawai’i is annexed by the Newlands Resolution on June 6, after the US Senate refused to ratify a treaty negotiated between the US and the fraudulent “Republic of Hawaii.” This occurred while the US was at war (for ten weeks) with Spain.


13. 1925- Canada- US Boundary Treaty- we finally nail down where in the Lake of the Woods the boundary with Canada is, so we swap out a few acres.


So that’s how we got the boundaries of the United STATES.


But we have other territories which are not parts of states.


AND also… the US claimed uninhabited islands to mine bird and bat poop throughout the world based on the Guano Islands Act of 1856– like Johnston Atoll; Baker Island (which is south of the equator); Howland Island, where Amelia Earheart was headed when she disappeared; Jarvis Island; and Kingman Reef, all in the Pacific Ocean…


And we gained territory from the Spanish- American War…. (Guam remains from this, the Philippines have their independence)


And we split Samoa with Germany in the Tripartite Convention of 1899, from which we got American Samoa…


And we gained territory from World War II- Wake Island and Midway Island, sites of famous battles….


The end… so far….

Who were the Big Four?

Your book only names two on page 569. Go here for the rest:

19:1 MC practice

1. The pro-slavery government of Kansas Territory was headquartered in
A. Kansas City
B. Wichita
C. Shawnee Mission
D. Topeka
E. Leavenworth

2. The trick of the Lecompton Constitution was that
A. it allowed slaveholders more representation than non-slaveholders.
B. rejection of the constitution automatically made Kansas a slave state.
C. the vote on it was held directly over the border between Missouri and Kansas.
D. voters had to present proof of ownership of slaves before being allowed to cast a ballot.
E. even voting for the constitution “without slavery” allowed slave-owners in the territory to keep their slaves.

3. In 1856, the breaking point over slavery in Kansas occurred with
A. the passage of the Lecompton Constitution.
B. the influx of a large number of slaves.
C. the establishment of abolitionist churches within Kansas.
D. an attack on Lawrence by a gang of proslavery raiders.
E. the arrival of John Brown.

4. In 1857, the Supreme Court ruled in Scott v. Sanford that
A. slavery was constitutional, but the slave trade was unconstitutional.
B. protection of slavery was guaranteed in all the Western territories.
C. slavery was inconsistent with the Constitution and must be abolished.
D. slavery could only be abolished through the vote of state legislatures.
E. slavery would be allowed only in those territories where there were already at least 10% of the population enslaved.

5. When the British and French people read Uncle Tom’s Cabin, their governments
A. concluded they must end slavery in their own territories.
B. decided to give aid to the slaveholding South.
C. banned the book.
D. distributed the book as anti-American propaganda.
E. realized that intervention on behalf of the South would be deeply unpopular.

6. Nativists in the 1850s were known for their
A. anti-Catholic and anti-foreign attitudes.
B. support of slavery.
C. support of Native Americans (indigenous peoples).
D. opposition to alcohol and Sabbath-breaking.
E. opposition to old-stock Protestants.

7. A significant reason the Republicans lost the election of 1856 is
A. the division between Democrats and Know-Nothings.
B. southern threats that a Republican victory would be a declaration of war.
C. their refusal to address the issue of slavery over economic concerns.
D. the North’s unwillingness to leave the South alone.
E. lingering support for slavery in the North.

8. In the presidential election of 1856, the Republicans
A. lost behind their most popular leader, William Seward.
B. revealed astonishing strength for a brand new party.
C. made their debut as the most successful third party in American political history.
D. finished third behind the Democrats and Know-Nothings.
E. proved unable to present a clear platform on slavery expansion.

9. The panic of 1857
A. was caused by over-exportation of southern cotton.
B. finally caused southern congressmen to support free homesteads in the West.
C. demonstrated the economic dominance of the North.
D. hit hardest among grain growers in the Northwest.
E. stimulated Northern demands for lower tariff rates.

10. As a result of the Lincoln-Douglas debates
A. Lincoln was elected president.
B. Lincoln was elected to the Senate.
C. Douglas increased his chances of winning the presidency.
D. Illinois voters rejected the concept of popular sovereignty.
E. Douglas defeated Lincoln for the Senate.