US History: 1820-1840 Term Paper

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American Enduring Vision

American History 1820-1840 Enduring Vision

How did the changes experienced by Americans after 1820 incorporate elements of the 'Enduring Vision' to preserve a common national identity?

Political Developments

During this early period of American identity formation between 1820-1830, one of the most profound developments was the removal of Indian peoples from their native territories. Increasingly, the common American, the common American White man sought political enfranchisement and territory to farm on his own. These two desires, of political power and land, conjoined to make Indian removal politically popular and expedient for those in authority.

During this time, the ideal of the genteel American farmer in government began to recede. The Jeffersonian ideal was replaced by what became the Jacksonian ideal of the common man voicing his will in politics. Andrew Jackson was elected President in 1828 on a promise of full enfranchisement for all men, without former property limitations upon the right to vote. Unfortunately for native peoples, this enfranchisement of 'American' created an increased demand for land through Westward expansion. Thus, the "Enduring Vision" of democracy as voiced in the Declaration of Independence became the enduring vision and voice, in more concrete form, with fuller access to the vote, but at the cost of America's honesty and its treaties with its native populace.

Economic Developments

After 1820, America began to feel the first effects of the Industrial Revolution, as industrial development exploded in the Massachusetts Lowell cotton mills that first opened in 1822, and Eli Whitney's cotton gin newly invigorated cotton production in the agriculture-dominated South. Of course, the cost of this industrial development was the freedom of African-Americans, and the subsequent division of America into a half-slave and half-free nation. The…

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