Basics: Review Map #1 for physical characteristics of the continent from the Atlantic to the Pacific

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UNIT 8—Manifest Destiny/Westward Expansion—Things to Know

Use the materials (maps, notes, handouts) in the Unit 8 section of your binder to

think about, quiz yourself and study the following items for your Unit 8 Exam.

  • Review Map #1 for physical characteristics of the continent from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

  • Review Map #2 for the details of acquiring each territory to form the United States today.

  • Manifest Destiny-Westward Expansion Era:

Time period: 1800’s

Location: West of Mississippi River
History. How did the Northwest Ordinance establish principles and procedures for orderly expansion of the United States? Details.

    • The NWO provided principles and procedures for establishing territories and creating states—provided for the orderly expansion of the U.S.

      • Principles: democracy, freedom, education, property rights

      • Procedures:

        • With 5,000 free adult males, territory could elect governor

        • Every territory had land set aside for schools/education

        • When the total free population reached 60,000, the territory could enter the Union as a state with the same rights and privileges as the original 13 states and could submit a constitution.

          • Also needed 5,000 free men who owned at least 50 acres

          • BANNED SLAVERY!!!

  • What were the political, economic, and social roots of Manifest Destiny?

    • Political:

      • expansion of nation’s borders

      • expansion of democracy

      • expansion of slavery

    • Economic:

      • New land for settlers/farmers

      • New trade routes and markets

      • New opportunities to start businesses, trade

    • Social:

      • Expand American Culture

      • Spread religion

      • Refuge for persecuted groups (Mormons)

  • What is the relationship between the concept of Manifest Destiny and the

westward growth of the nation?

    • Americans believed it was their destiny to span the continent, from sea to shining sea, and spread the American ideals of democracy, freedom, and innovation.

    • President James K. Polk runs on the issue of expansion, “54-40 or Fight!”

      • He’s Mr. Manifest Destiny. As soon as he’s elected, he annexes Texas!

  • U.S.-Mexican War:

    • Causes:

      • Mexico never recognized independence of Texas

      • Border dispute! Rio Grande vs. Nueces

      • U.S. builds fort and patrols in the disputed area near the Rio Grande

      • Mexico says, “Oh, no you don’t!” and attacks the fort!

      • US says, “Oh, no you don’t!” and declares war!

    • Effects/Results/Impact:

      • TREATY OF GUADALUPE HIDALGO ends the Mexican War

        • Mexico recognizes Texas as part of the U.S.

        • The Rio Grande is made the border

        • Mexican Cession: Mexico cedes area for $15 million

(California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, parts of New Mexico, Colorado, and Wyoming)

  • Areas that were acquired to form the United States—where, how, and when! Map#2

  • Major chronological events of Westward Expansion. Timeline of Westward Expansion.


  • Places and regions of importance in the United States during the 19th century (1800s)

  • How physical characteristics of the environment influenced population distribution, settlement patterns and economic activities in the United States during the 19th century (1800s) MAP#1

    • BARRIERS? Physical Features? How did these features affect expansion and settlement?


    • TRAILS:

      • OREGON TRAIL: earliest route West…based on Lewis and Clark’s expedition

      • SANTA FE TRAIL: new trade route to new Mexican markets in the southwest—

              • Mexico threw out the Welcome mat! Come! Spend American $ here!

      • MORMON TRAIL: Joseph Smith, Brigham Young and the path to religious

freedom for the Mormons!

      • All trails were dangerous—mountains, rivers, dense wilderness, wild animals!


  • Contributions of people of various racial, ethnic, and religious groups to our national identity. Asian immigrants to California. Contributed to growth of economy during Gold Rush, contributed to building of the transcontinental railroad!

  • Examples of American art, music, and literature that reflect society in the era of Westward Expansion. John Gast, American Progress; banjo music, Oh Susanna!

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