1902 Encyclopedia > United States > Democracy and Nationality: 1801-29

United States
(Part 7)




SECTION I: HISTORY AND CONSTITUTION (cont.)

Part 7. Democracy and Nationality: 1801-29


166. When Jefferson took office in 1801 he succeeded to a task large than he imagined. His party, ignoring the natural forces which tied the State together even against their wills, insisted that the legal basis of the bond was in the power of any State to withdraw at will. This was no nationality; and foreign nations naturally refused to take the American national coin at any higher valuation than that at which it was current in its own country. The urgent necessity was for a reconciliation between democracy and nationality; and this was the work of this period. An underlying sense of all this has led Democratic leaders to call the war of 1812-15 the "second war for independence"; but the result was as much independence of past ideas as of Great Britain.

167. The first force in the new direction was the acquisition of Louisiana (§ 32) in 1803. Napoleon had acquired it from Spain, and, fearing an attack upon it by Great Britain, offered it to the United States for $15,000,000. Jefferson and his party were eager to accept the offer; but the constitution gave the Federal Government no power to buy and hold territory, and the party was based on a strict construction of the constitution. Possession of power forced the strict-construction party to broaden its ideas, and Louisiana was bought, though Jefferson quieted his conscience by talking for a time of a futile proposal to amend the constitution so as to grant the necessary power. The acquisition of the western Mississippi basin more than doubled the area of the united States, and gave them control of all the great river-systems of central North America. The difficulties of using these rivers were removed almost immediately by Fulton’s utilization of steam in navigation (1807). Within four years steamboats were at work on Western waters; and thereafter the increase of steam navigation and that of population stimulated one another. Population crossed the Mississippi; constantly increasing eddies filled up the vacant places to the east of the great river; and all sections of the country advanced as they had never advanced before. the "center of population" has been carefully ascertained by the census authorities for each decade, and it represents the westward movement of population very closely. During this period it advanced from about the middle of the State of Maryland to its extreme western limit; that is, the center of population was in 1830 nearly at the place which had been the western limit of population in 1770.

168. Jefferson also laid the basis for a further acquisition in the future by sending an expedition under Lewis and Clarke to explore the territory north of the then Spanish territory of California and west of the Rocky Mountains- the "Oregon country" as it was afterwards called (§ 221, 224). The explorations of this party (1804), with Captain Gray’s discovery of the Columbia river (1792), made the best part of the claims of the United States to the country forty years later.

169. Jefferson was re-elected in 1804, serving until 1809; his party now controlled almost all the States outside of New England, and could elect almost any one whom it chose to the presidency. Imitating Washington in refusing a third term of office, Jefferson established the precedent, which has not since been violated, restricting a president to two terms, though the constitution contains no such restriction. The great success of his presidency had been the acquisition of Louisiana, which was a violation of his party principles; but all his minor successes were, like this, recognitions of the national sovereignty which he disliked so much. After a short and brilliant naval war the Barbary pirates were reduced to submission (1805). And the authority of the nation was asserted for the first time in internal affairs. The long-continued control of New Orleans by Spain, and the persistent intrigues of the Spanish authorities, looking towards a separation of the whole western country from the United States, had been ended by the annexation of Louisiana, and they will probably remain for ever hidden in the secret history of the early West. They had left behind a dangerous ignorance of Federal power and control, of which Burr took advantage (1807). Organizing an expedition in Kentucky and Tennessee, probably for the conquest of the Spanish colony of Mexico, he was arrested on the lower Mississippi and brought back to Virginia. He was acquitted; but the incident opened up a vaster view of the national authority than democracy had yet been able to take. It had been said, forty years before, that Great Britain had long arms, but that 3000 miles was too far to extend them; it was something to know now that the arms of the Federal Government were long enough to reach from Washington city to the Mississippi.


170. All the success of Jefferson was confined to his first four years; all his heavy failures were in his second term, in which he and his party as persistently refused to recognize or assert the inherent power of the nation in international affairs. The Jay treaty expired in 1804 by limitation, and American commerce was thereafter left to the course of events, without any restriction of treaty obligations, since Jefferson refused to accept the only treaty which the British Government was willing to make. All the difficulties which followed may be summed up in a few words: the British Government was then the representative of the ancient system of restriction of commerce, and had a powerful navy to enforce its ideas; the American Government was endeavoring to force into international recognition the present system of neutral rights and unrestricted commerce, but its suspicious democracy refused to give it a navy sufficient to command respect for its ideas. Indeed, the American Government did not want the navy; it apparently expected to gain its objects without the exhibition of anything but moral force.

171. Great Britain was now at war, from time to time, with almost every other nation of Europe. In time of peace European nations followed generally the old restrictive principle of allowing another nation, like the United States, no commercial access to their colonies; but, when they were at war with Great Britain, whose navy controlled the ocean, they were very willing to allow the neutral America merchantmen to carry away their surplus colonial produce. Great Britain had insisted for fifty years that the neutral nation, in such cases, was really intervening in the war as an ally of her enemy; but she had so far modified her claim as to admit that "transshipment," or breaking bulk, in the United States was enough to qualify the commerce for recognition, no matter whither it was directed after transshipment. The neutral nation thus gained a double freight, and grew rich in the traffic; the belligerent nations no longer had commerce afloat for British vessels to capture; and the "frauds of the neutral flags" became a standing subject of complaint among British merchants and naval officers. About 1805 British prize courts began to disregard transshipment and to condemn American vessels which had made the voyage from a European colony to the mother country by way of the United States. This was really a restriction of American commerce to purely American productions, or to commerce with Great Britain direct, with the payment of duties in British ports.

173. The question of expatriation, to, furnished a good many burning grievances. Great Britain maintained the old German rule of perpetual allegiance, though she had modified it by allowing the right of emigration. The United Sates, founded by immigration, was anxious to establish what Great Britain was not disposed to grant, the right of the subject to divest himself of allegiance by naturalization under a foreign jurisdiction. Four facts thus tended to break off friendly relations – (1) Great Britain’s claim to allegiance over American naturalized subjects: (2) her claim to the belligerent right of search of neutral vessels; (3) her claim of right to impress for her vessels of war her subjects who were seamen wherever found; and (4) the difficulty of distinguishing native-born Americans from British subjects, even if the right to impress naturalized American subjects were granted. British naval officers even undertook to throw the onus probandi upun Americans – to consider all who spoke the English language as British subjects, unless they could produce proof that they were native-born Americans. The American sailor who lost his papers was thus open to impressments. The American Government in 1810 published the cases of such impressments since 1803, as numbering over 4000, about one-third of the cases resulting in the discharge of the impressed man; but no one could say how many cases had never been brought to the attention of a Government which never did anything more than remonstrate about them.

173. In Mat 1806 the British Government, by orders in council, declared a blockade of the whole continent of Europe from Brest to the elbe, about 800 miles. In November, after the battle of Jena, Napoleon answered by the "Berlin decree," in which he assumed to blockade the British Isles, thus beginning his "continental system." A year later the British Government answered by further orders in council, forbidding American trade with any country from which the British flag was excluded, allowing direct trade from the United States to Sweden only, in American products, and permitting American trade with other parts of Europe only on condition of touching in England and paying duties. Napoleon retorted with the "Milan decree," declaring good prize any vessel which should submit to search by a British ship; but this was evidently a vain fulmination.

174. The Democratic party of the United States was almost exclusively agricultural, and had little knowledge of or sympathy with commercial interests; it had little confidence in the American navy; it was pledged to the reduction of national expenses and the debt, and did not wish to take on its shoulders the responsibility for a navy; and, as the section of country most affected by the orders in council, New England, was Federalist, and made up the active and irreconcilable opposition, a tinge of political feeling could not but color the decisions of the dominant party. Various ridiculous proposals were considered as substitutes for a necessarily naval war; and perhaps the most ridiculous was adopted. Since the use of non-intercourse agreements as revolutionary weapons against Great Britain (S 50), an overweening confidence in such measures had sprung up, and one of them was now resorted to – the embargo (1807), forbidding foreign commerce altogether. It was expected to starve Great Britain into a change of policy; and its effects may be seen by comparing the $20,000,000 exports of 1790, $49,000,000 of 1807, and $9,000,000 of 1808. It does not seem to have struck those who passed the measure that the agricultural districts also might find the change unpleasant; but that was the result, and their complaints reinforced those of New England, and closed Jefferson’s second term in a cloud of recognized misfortune. The pressure had been slightly relieved by the substitution of the Non-intercourse Law (1809) for the embargo; it prohibited intercourse with Great Britain and France and their dependencies, leaving other foreign commerce open; but Madison, Jefferson’s successor in 1808-09, assumed in the presidency a burden which was not enviable. New England was in a ferment, and was even suspected of designs to resist the restrictive system by force (§ 180); and the administration did not feel secure enough in its position to face the future with confidence.

175. The Non-intercourse Law was to be abandoned as to either belligerent which should abandon its attacks on neutral commerce, and maintained against the other. In 1810 Napoleon officially informed the American Government that he had abandoned his system. He continued to enforce it in fact; but his official fiction served its purpose of limiting the non-intercourse for the future to Great Britain, and thus straining relations between that country and the United States still further. The elections of 1811-12 resulted everywhere in the defeat of "submission men" and in the choice of new members who were determined to resort to war against Great Britain; France had not been able to offer such concrete cases of injury as her enemy, and there was no general disposition to include her in the war. Clay, Calhoun, Crawford, and other new men seized the lead in the two houses of Congress, and forced Madison to agree to a declaration of war as a condition of his re-election in 1812. war was begun by the declaration of June 18, 1812. The New England Federalists always called it "Mr Madison’s war," but the president was about the unwilling participant in it.





176. The national democracy meant to attack Great Britain in Canada, partly to gratify its Western constituency, who had been harassed by Indian attacks, asserted to have been instigated from Canada. Premonitions of success were drawn from the battle of Tippecanoe, in which Harrison had defeated the north-western league of Indians formed by Tecumseh (1811). Between the solidly settled Atlantic States and the Canadian frontier was a wide stretch of unsettled or thinly settled country, which was itself a formidable obstacle to war. Ohio had been admitted as a State in 1802, and Louisiana was admitted in 1812; but their admission had been due to the desire to grant them self-government rather than to their full development in population and resources. Cincinnati was a little settlement of 2500 inhabitants; the fringe of settled country ran not very far north of it; and all beyond was a wilderness of which little was known tot the authorities. The case was much the same with western New York; the army which was to cross the Niagara river must journey almost all the way from Albany through a country far more thirty peopled than the far western Territories are in 1887. The difficulties of transport gave opportunities for peculation; and a barrel of flour sometimes reached the frontier army with its cost multiplied seven or eight fold. When a navy was to be built on the lakes, the ropes, anchors, guns, and all material had to be carried overland for a distance about equal to the length of England; and even then sailors had to be brought to man the navy, and the vessels were built of green timber: one vessel was launched nine weeks after her timber was cut. It would have been far less costly, as events proved, to have entered at once upon a naval war; but the crusade against Canada had been proclaimed all through Kentucky and the West, and their people were determined to wipe out their old scores before the conclusion of the war.

177. The war opened with disaster- Hull’s surrender of Detroit; and disaster attended it for two years. Political appointments to positions in the regular army were numerous, and such officers were worse than useless. The men were not fitly trained or supplied. The war department showed no great knowledge, and poverty put its little knowledge out of service. Several futile attempts at invasion were followed by defeat or abortion, until the political officers were weeded out at the end of the year 1813, and Brown, Scott, Ripley, and others who had fought their way up were put in command. Then for the first time the men were drilled and brought into effective condition; and two successful battles in 1814- Chippewa and Lundy’s Lane – threw some glory on the end of the war. So weak were the preparations even for defence that a British expedition in 1814 met no effective resistance when it landed and burned Washington. It was defeated, however, in an attempt to take Baltimore.

178. The American navy at the outbreak of the war numbered half a dozen frigates and about the same number of smaller vessels. This was but a puny adversary for the thousand sail of the British navy, which had captured or shut up in port all the other navies of Europe. But the small number of American vessels, with the superabundance of trained officers, gave them one great advantage; the training and discipline of the men, and the equipment of the vessels, had been brought to the very highest point. Captains who could command a vessel but for a short time, yielding her then to another officer who was to take his sea service in rotation, were all ambitions to make their mark during their term. "The art of handling and fighting the old broadside sailing frigate" had been carried in the little American navy to a point which unvarying success and a tendency to fleet-combats had now made far less common among British captains.

179. The first year of the war saw five ship-duels, in all of which the American frigates either captured or sunk their adversaries. Four others followed in 1813, in two of which the British vessels came off victorious. The attention of the British Government had by that time been fully diverted to the North-American coast; its blockading fleets made it very difficult for the larger American vessels to get to sea; and there were but seven other ship-combats, in only one of which the American vessel was taken. Most of the work was done by three frigates, the "Constitution," the "Essex," and the "United States." There was fighting also on the Great Lakes between improvised fleets of small vessels. Perry captured the British fleet on Lake Erie (1813) and Macdonough the British fleet on Lake Champlain (1814). The former victory led to the end of rthe war in the West. Harrison, the American commander in that section , shipped his army across the lake in Perry’s fleet, and routed the British and Canadian army at the Thames.

180. The home dislike to the war had increased steadily with the evidence of incompetent management by the administration. The Federalists, who had always desired a navy pointed to the naval successes as the best proof of the folly with which the war had been undertaken and managed. New England Federalists complained that the Federal Government utterly neglected the defence of their coast, and that Southern influence was far too strong in national affairs. They showed at every opportunity a disposition to adopt the further stretch of State sovereignty, as stated in the Kentucky resolutions; and every such development urged the national democracy unconsciously further on the road to nationality. When the New England States sent delegates to meet at Hartford and consider their grievances and the best remedies – a step perfectly proper on the Democratic theory of a "voluntary Union" – treason was suspected, and a readiness to suppress it by force was plainly shown. The recommendations of the convention came to nothing; but the attitude of the dominant party towards it is one of the symptoms of the manner in which the trials of actual war were steadily reconciling democracy and nationality. The object which Hamilton had sought by high tariffs and the development of national classes had been attained by more natural and healthy means.

181. In April 1814 the first abdication of Napoleon took place, and Great Britain was able to give more attention to her American antagonist. The main attack was to be made on Louisiana, the weakest and most distant portion of the Union. A fleet and army were sent thither, and, after much delay, landed below the city. The nearest settled country was Tennessee; and between it and New Orleans was a wilderness four hundred miles long. Andrew Jackson had become the most prominent citizen of Tennessee, and he was ordered to the defence of New Orleans. His popularity and energy brought riflemen down the river and put them into position. The British assault was marred by hopeless blunders, and the gallantry of the men only made their slaughter and repulse more complete (January 8, 1815). Peace had been made at Ghent fifteen days before the battle was fought, but the news of the battle and the peace reached Washington almost together, the former going far to make the latter tolerable.

182. Though the land war had gone almost uniformly against the United States, and the American naval successes had been just enough to irritate the English mind, and though the British negotiators had nothing to dread and everything to demand, the treaty was quite satisfactory to the United States. It is true that it said not a word about the questions of impressments, search, and neural rights, the grounds of the war; Great Britain did not abandon her position on any of them. But everybody knew that circumstances had changed. The new naval power whose frigates alone in the past twenty years had shown their ability to fight English frigates on equal terms was not likely to be troubled in future with the question of impressments; and in fact, while not renouncing the right, the British Government no longer attempted to enforce it. The navy, it must be confessed, was the force which had at last given the United States a recognized and cordial acceptance in the family of nations; it had solved the problem of the reconciliation of democracy and nationality. From this time the dominant party shows an increasing disposition to exalt and maintain the national element of the American system.

183. The remainder of this period is of the barrenest in American history. The opposition of the Federal party to the war completed the measure of its unpopularity, and it had only a perfunctory existence for a few years longer. There was but one real party, and the political struggles within it tended to take the shape of purely personal politics. Scandal, intrigue, and personal criticism became the most marked characteristics of American politics until the dominant party broke at the end of the period, and real party conflict was renewed. But the seeds of the final disruption are visible from the peace of 1814. The old-fashioned Republicans looked with intense suspicion on the new form of republicanism generated by the war, a type which instinctively bent its energies towards the further development of national power. Clay was the natural leader of the new democracy; but John Quincy Adams and others of Federalist antecedents or leanings took to the new doctrines kindly; and even Calhoun, Crawford (p. 788), and others of the Southern interest were at first strongly inclined to support them. One of the first effects was the revival of protection and of a national bank.

184. The charter of the national bank (§ 146) had expired in 1811, and the dominant party had refused to recharter it. The attempt to carry on the war by loans resulted in almost a bankruptcy and in a complete inability to act efficiently. As soon as peace gave time for consideration, a second bank was chartered for twenty years, with a capital of $35,000,000, four fifths of which might be in Government stock. It was to have the custody of the Government revenues but the secretary of the treasury could divert the revenues to other custodians, giving his reasons for such action to Congress. This clause, meant to cover cases in which the Bank of the United States had no branch at a place where money was needed, was after wards put to use for a very different purposes (§ 204).

185. Protection was advocated again on national grounds, but not quite on those which had moved Hamilton (§ 146). The additional receipts were now to be expended for fortifications and other national defences, and for national roads and canals, the latter to be considered solely as military measures, with a incidental benefit to the people. Business distress among the people gave additional force to the proposal. The war and blockade had been an active form of protection, under which American manufactures had sprung up in great abundance. As soon as peace was made English manufacturers poured their products into the United States, and drove their American rivals out of business or reduced them to desperate straits. Their cries to Congress for relief had a double effect. They gave the spur to the nationalizing advocates of protection, and, as most of the manufacturers were in New England or New York, they developed in the citadel of Federalism a class which looked for help to a Republican Congress, and was therefore bound to oppose the Federal party. This was the main force which brought New England into the Republican fold before 1825. An increase in the number of spindles from 80,000 in 1811 to 500,000 in 185, and in cotton consumption from 500 bales in 1800 to 90,000 in 1815, the rise of manufacturing towns, and the rapid development of the mechanical tendencies of a people who had been hitherto almost exclusively agricultural, were influences which were to be reckoned with in the politics of a democratic country.

186. The tariff of 1816 imposed a duty of about 25 per cent. on imports of cotton and woolen goods, and specific duties on iron imports. The ad valoerem duties carried most of the manufacturers through the financial crisis of 1818-19, but the iron duties were less satisfactory. In English manufacture the substitution of coke for charcoal in iron production led to continual decrease in price. As the price went down the specific duties were continually increasing the absolute amount of protection. Thus spared the necessity for improvements in production, the American manufacturers felt English competition more keenly as the years went by, and called for more protection.

187. Monroe succeeded Madison as president in 1817, and, re-elected with hardly any opposition in 1820, he served until 1825. So complete was the supremacy of the Republican party that this is often called "the era of good feeling." It came to an end when a successor to Monroe was to be elected; the two sections of the dominant party then had their first opportunity for open struggle. During Monroe’s two terms of office the nationalizing party developed the policy on which it proposed to manage national affairs. This was largely the product of the continually swelling western movement of population. The influence of the steamboat was felt more and more every year, and the want of a similar improvement in land transport was correspondingly evident. The attention drawn to western New York by the war had filled that part of the State with a new population. The Southern Indians had been completely overthrown by Jackson during the war of 1812, and forced to cede their lands; all the territory west of Georgia was thus opened up to settlement. The admission of the new States of Indiana (1816), Mississippi (1817), Illinois (1818), Alabama (1819), Maine (1820), and Missouri (1821) – all but Maine the product and evidence of Western growth – were the immediate results of the development consequent upon the war. All the territory east of the Mississippi, except the northern part of the north-west territory, was now formed into self-governing States; the State system had already crossed the Mississippi; and all that was needed for further development was the locomotive engine. The four millions of 1790 had grown into thirteen millions in 1830; and there was a steady increase of one-third in each decade.





188. The urgent demand of Western settlers for some road to a market led to a variety of schemes to facilitate intercourse between the East and the West- the most successful being that completed in New York in 1825, the Erie Canal. The Hudson river forms the great natural breach in the barrier range which runs parallel to the Atlantic coast. When the traveler has passed up the Hudson through that range he sees before him a vast Champaign country extending westward to the Great Lakes, and perfectly adapted by nature for a canal. Such a canal, to turn Western traffic into the lake rivers and through the lakes, the canal, and the Hudson to New York city, was begun by the State through the influence of De Witt Clinton, was derisively called "Clinton’s big ditch" until its completion, and laid the foundations for the great commercial prosperity of New York State and city. Long before it was finished the evident certainty of its success had seduced other States into far successful enterprises of the kind and had established as a nationalizing policy the combination of high tariffs and expenditures for internal improvements which was long known as the "American system." The tariffs of duties on imports were to be carried as high as revenue results would approve; within this limit the duties were to be defined for purposes of protection; and the superabundant revenues were to be expended for the improvement of roads, rivers, and harbors, and for every enterprise which would tend to aid the people in their efforts to subdue the continent. Protection was now to be for national benefit, not for the benefit of classes. Western farmers were to have manufacturing towns at their doors, as markets for the surplus which had hitherto been rotting on their farms; competition among manufacturers was to keep down prices; migration to all the new advantages of the West was to be made easy at national expense; and Henry Clay’s eloquence was to commend the whole policy to the people. The old Democracy, particularly in the South, insisted that the whole scheme really had its basis in benefits to classes, that its communistic features were not such as the constitution meant to cover by its grant of power to Congress to levy taxation for the general welfare, and that any such legislation would be unconstitutional. The dissatisfaction in the South rose higher when the tariffs were increased in 1824 and 1828. The proportion of customs revenue to dutiable imports rose to 37 per cent. in 1825 to 44 per cent. in 1829; and the ratio to aggregate imports to 33 per cent. in 1825 and 37 per cent. in 1829. as yet, however, the Southern dissatisfaction showed itself only in resolutions of State legislatures.

189. In the sudden development of the new nation circumstances had conspired to give social forces an abnormally materialistic cast, and this had strongly influenced the expression of the national life. Its literature and its art had amounted to little, for the American people were still engaged in the fiercest of warfare against natural difficulties, which absorbed all their energies.

190. In international relation the action of the Government was strong, quiet, and self-respecting. Its first weighty action took place in 1823. It had become pretty evident that the Holy Alliance, in addition to its interventions in Europe to suppress popular risings, meant to aid Spain in bringing her revolted South-American colonies to obedience. Great Britain had been drifting steadily away from the alliance, and Canning, the new secretary, determined to call in the weight of the trans-Atlantic power as a check upon it. A hint to the American minister was followed by a few pregnant passages in President Monroe’s annual message in December. Stating the friendly relations of the united States with the new South-American republics, he went on to say, "We could not view an interposition for oppressing them (the South-American states), or controlling in any other manner their destiny by any European power, in any other light than as manifestation of an unfriendly disposition towards the United States." If both the United States and Great Britain were to take this ground the fate of a fleet sent by the Alliance across the Atlantic was not in much doubt, and he project was at once given up. The "Monroe doctrine," however, has remained the rule of foreign intercourse for all American parties. Added to the already established refusal of the United States to become entangled in any European wars or alliances, it has separated the two continents, to their common advantage.

191. It was supposed at the time that Spain might transfer her colonial claims to some stronger power; and Mr Monroe therefore went on to say that "the American continents should no longer be subjects for any new European colonial settlement." The meaning of this was well understood at the time; and, when its condition failed, the statement lost its force. It has been supposed that it bound the United States to resist any further establishment of European colonies in the Americas. Such a role of universal arbiter has always been repudiated by the United States, - thought its sympathies, more or less active, must always go with any American republic which falls into collision with any such colonizing scheme.

192. By a treaty with Russia (1825) that power gave up all claims on the pacific coast south of the present limits at Alaska. The northern boundary of the United States had been settled by the treaty of 1783; and, after the acquisition of Louisiana, a convention with Great Britain settled the boundary on the line of 49° N. lat. as far west as the Rocky Mountains (1818). West of these mountains the so-called Oregon country (§ 168) or whose limits the two power could not agree was to be held in common possession for ten years. This common possession was prolonged by another convention (1827) indefinitely, with the privilege to either power to terminate it on giving twelve months notice. This arrangement lasted until 1846 (§ 224).

193. Monroe’s terms of office came to an end in 1825. He had originally been an extreme Democrat, who could hardly speak of Washington with patience; he had slowly changed into a very moderate Republican, whose tendencies were eagerly claimed by the few remaining Federalists as identical with their own. The nationalizing faction of the dominant party has scored almost all the successes of the administration, and the divergence between it and the opposing faction was steadily becoming more apparent. All the candidates for the presidency in 1824 – Andrew Jackson, a private citizen of Tennessee; William H. Crawford, Monroe’s secretary of the treasury; John Quincy Adams, his secretary of state; and Henry Clay, the speaker of the house of representatives – claimed to be Republicans alike; but the personal nature of the struggle was shown by the tendency of their supporters to call themselves "Adams men" or Jackson men," rather than by any real party title. Calhoun was supported by all parties for the vice-presidency, and was elected without difficulty. The choice of a president was more doubtful.

194. Noneof the four candidates had anything like a party organization behind him. Adams and Clay represented the nationalizing element, as Crawford and Jackson did not; but there the likeness among the stopped. The strongest forces behind Adams were the new manufacturing and commercial interests of the East; behind Clay were the desires of the West for internal improvements at public expense as a set-off to the benefits which the seaboard States had already received from the Government; and the two elements were soon to be united into the national Republican or Wig party. Crawford was the representative of the old Democratic party, with all its Southern influence and leanings. Jackson was the personification of the new democracy, – not very cultured, perhaps, but honest, and hating every shade of class control instinctively. As he became better known the whole force of the new drift of things turned in his direction; "hurrah for Jackson" undoubtedly often represented tendencies which the speaker would have found it hard to express otherwise. Crawford was taken out of the race, just after this election, by physical failure, and Adams by the revival of ancient quarrels with the Federalists of New England; and the future was to be with Clay or with Jackson. But in 1824 the question of success among the four was not an easy one to decide. The electros gave no one a majority; and the house of representatives gave the presidency to Adams (§ 119, 120).

195. Adam’s election in 1824 was due to the fact that Clay’s friends in the house- unable to vote for him, as he was the lowest in the electoral vote, and only three names were open to choice in the house-very naturally gave their votes to Adams. As Adams appointed Clay to the leading position in his cabinet, the defeated party at once raised the cry "bargain and intrigues," one of the most effective in a democracy, and it was kept up throughout Adam’s four years of office. Jackson had received the largest number of electoral votes, though not a majority; and the hazy notion that he had been injured because of his devotion to the people increased his popularity. Though demagogues made use of it for selfish purposes, this feeling was an honest one, and Adams had nothing to oppose to it. He tried vigorously to uphold the "American system," and succeeded in passing the tariff of 1828; he tried to maintain the influence of the united States on both the American continents; but he remained as unpopular as his rival grew popular. In 1828 Adams was easily displaced by Jackson. Calhoun was re-elected vice-president.

196. Jackson’s inauguration in 1829 closes this period, as it ends the time during which a disruption of the Union by the peaceable withdrawal of any State was even possible. The party which had made State sovereignty its bulwark in 1798 was now in control of the Government again; but Jackson’s proclamation in his first term, in which he warned South Carolina that "disunion by armed force is treason," and that blood must flow if the laws were resisted, speaks a very different tone from the speculations of Jefferson on possible future divisions of the United States. And even the sudden attempt of South Carolina to exercise independent action (§ 206), which would have been looked upon as almost a right forty years before, shows that some interest dependent upon State sovereignty had taken alarm at the evident drift of events, and was anxious to lodge a claim to the right before it should slip from its fingers for ever. Nullification was but the first skirmish between the two hostile force of slavery and democracy.

197. When the vast territory of Louisiana was acquired in 1803 the new owner found slavery already established there by custom recognized by French and Spanish law. Congress tacitly ratified existing law by taking no action; slavery continued legal, and spread further through the territory; and the State of Louisiana entered as a slave State in 1812. The next State to be carved out of the territory was Missouri, admitted in 1821. A territory, on applying for admission as a State, brings a constitution for inspection by Congress; and, when it was found that the new State of Missouri proposed to recognize and continue slavery, a vigorous opposition spread through the North and West, and carried most of the senators and representatives from those sections with it. In the house of representatives these two sections had a greatly superior number of members; but, as the number of Northern and Southern States had been kept about equal, the compact Southern vote, with one or two Northern allies, generally retained control of the senate. Admitted by the senate and rejected by the house, Missouri’s application hung suspended for several years, until it was successful by the admission of Maine, a balancing Northern State, and by the following arrangements, known as the Missouri compromise of 1820: - Missouri was to enter as a slave State; slavery was for ever prohibited throughout the rest of the Louisiana purchase north of lat. 36° 30’, the main southern boundary of Missouri; and, though nothing was said of the territory south of the compromise line, it was understood that any State formed out of it was to be a slave State, if it so wished (§ 249). Arkansas entered under this provision in 1836.

198. The question of slavery was thus set at rest for the present, though a few agitators were roused to more zealous opposition to the essence of slavery itself. In the next decade these agitators succeeded only in the conversion of a few recruits, but these recruits were the ones who took up the work at the opening of the next period and never gave it up until slavery was ended. It is plain now, however, that North and South had already drifted to far apart s to form two sections, and that, as things stood, their drift for the future could only be further apart, in spite of the feeble tie furnished by the Missouri compromise. It became evident, during the next forty years, that the wants and desires of these two sections were so divergent that it was impossible for one Government to make satisfactory laws for both. The moving cause was not removed in 1820; one of its effects was got out of the way for the time, but others were soon to take its place.

199. The vast flood of human beings which had been pouring westward for years had now pretty well occupied the territory east of the Mississippi, while, on the west side of that stream, it still showed a disposition to hold to the river valleys. The settled area had increased from 240,000 square miles in 1790 to 633,000 square miles in 1830, with an average of 20.3 persons to the square mile. There was still a great deal of Indian territory in the Southern States of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, and in Florida, for the southern Indians were among the finest of their race; they had become semi-civilized, and were formidable antagonists to the encroaching white race. the States interested had begun preparations for their forcible removal, in public defiance of the attempts of t he Federal Government to protect the Indians (1827); but the removal was not completed until 1835. In the North, Wisconsin and Michigan, with the northern halves of Illinois and Indiana, were still very thinly settled, but everything indicated early increase of population. The first lake steamboat, the "Walk-in-the-Water," had appeared at Detroit in 1818, and the opening of the Erie Canal added to the number of such vessels. Lake Erie had seven in 1826; and in 1830, while the only important lake town, Detroit, was hardly yet more than a frontier fort, a daily line of steamers was running to it from Buffalo, carrying the increasing stream of emigrants to the Western territory.

200. The land system of the United States had much to do with the early development of the West. From the first settlement, the universally recognized rule had been that of absolute individual property in land, with its corollary of unrestricted competitive or "rack" rents; and this rule was accepted fully in the national land system, whose basis was reported by Jefferson, as chairman of a committee of the Confederation Congress (1785). The public lands were to be divided into hundreds of ten miles square, each containing one hundred mile-square plots. The hundred was called a :township," and was afterward reduced to six miles square, of thirty-six mile-square plots of 640 acres each. From time to time principal meridians and east and west base lines have been run, and townships have been determined by their relations to these lines. The section (plots) have been subdivided, but the transfer describes each parcel from the survey map, as in the case of "the south-west quarter of section 20, township 30, north, range I east of the third principal meridian." The price fixed in 1790 as a minimum was $2 per acre; it has tended to decrease, and no effort has ever been made to gain a revenue from it. When the nation acquired its Western territory it secured its title to the soil, and always made it a fundamental condition of the admission of a new State that it should not tax United States lands. To compensate the new States for the freedom of unsold public lands from taxation, one township in each thirty-six was reserved to them for educational purposes; and the excellent public school systems of the Western States have been founded on this provision. The cost of obtaining a quarter section (160 acres), under the still later homestead system of granting lands to actual settlers, has come to be only about $26; the interest on this, at 6 per cent. represents an annual rent of one cent per acre, - making this, says F.A. Walker, as nearly as possible the "no-rent land" of the economists.

201. The bulk of the early westward migration was of home production; the great immigration from Europe did not begin until about 1847 (§ 236). The West as well as the east thus had its institutions fixed before being called upon to absorb an enormous foreign element.


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