Jefersonian Democracy refers to the term of office of Thomas Jefferson which marks the end of Federalist control of American politics. A milder agrarian aristocracy replaced a commercial aristocracy, thereby setting an example of democratic simplicity. Jeffersonian placed more emphasis in the common man and brought moreidealism into the government.
•Election of 1800: Jefferson and fellow Republican Aaron Burr, who ran for Vice-presidency in the same year, received an equal number of electoral votes, thus creating a tie and throwing the presidential election into the House of Representatives, in agreement to Article II, Section 2, of the Constitution. With Hamilton’s coercion, Jefferson was elected as president, with Burr as Vice-president. (The Constitution was amended to require separate votes for each position.)
Revolution of 1800: Described by Jefferson in the his election of 1800, in which he sought to restore the country to the liberty and tranquillity it had known before Alexander Hamilton’s economic program and John Adams’s Alien and Sedition Acts. The national debt, most internal taxes, and the navy, where some of the problems needed to be fixed.
•JEFFERSONIAN DEMOCRACY: Jefferson’s administration severely cut naval and military operations. 70 percent of the national revenue was applied to reducing the national debt as well. Most importantly, Jefferson purchased the Louisiana territory from the French, though a Constitutional violation. Gallatin was the genius behind the public debt cut and creating a large surplus of funds. He opposed war, seeing it as detrimental to the national economy.
Midnight judges: Federalists dominated the government, but with the election of 1800, Jefferson drove them out, resulting in Adams’s last day in office (December 12, 1800). On this date he appointed last-minute judges to keep the judiciary in the Federalists hands, by using the Judiciary Act of 1801.
Justice Samuel Chase: Associate justice of the Supreme Court and signer of the Declaration of Independence, he was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1791 by Washington, and was impeached for his criticism of President Jefferson. Chase was defended strongly, and was later acquitted by the Senate.
Tripolitan War: (1802-5) War between the United States and the North African state of Tripoli, to which the US had been paying tribute, since 1784, for shipping access. The US refused to pay in 1801, which resulted in US ships being captured, but the US captured the town of Derna, led by Lieut. Stephen Decatur in 1805, to end the war.
Treaty of San Ildefonso: Treaty on October 1, 1800, in which Spain ceded the Louisiana territory to France, which was becoming a foremost military power. Threat of French expansion was the result of Jefferson’s goal to obtain the territory, not for expansionism, but the opportunities of trade by New Orleans as a sea port.
•LOUISIANA PURCHASE: When France obtained the territory from Spain, Jefferson’s goal to purchase the territory was the great port of New Orleans, land West of the Mississippi, as well as the threat of French invasion. Jefferson obtained the territory for $15 million, and was ratified as a treaty by the Senate, though purchasing the territory was Constitutionally illegal and going beyond his presidential rights. From this territory became 14 new state governments.
Toussaint L’Ouverture: Haitian general on the island of Santo-Domingo, who succeeded in liberating the island from France in 1801, and becoming president for life of the country. 1802, Napoleon sent troops to crush the Haitians, and Toussaint was defeated, and accused of conspiracy; where he was imprisoned and died in France.
•LOUISIANA PURCHASE: Most Federalists opposed the Louisiana Purchase on the grounds that it would decrease the relative importance of their strongholds on the eastern seaboard. Jefferson, a Republican, saw no reason to hand the Federalists an issue by dallying over ratification of the treaty made to obtain the territory.
Hamilton-Burr duel: Election of 1800 Between Jefferson and Burr, had turned to the House of Representatives for the decision of the next president Burr’s election in 1804, for the governor of NY State, where Hamilton opposed him, again. Dueled Hamilton on July 11, 1804, where Hamilton was killed.
Burr treason trial: Burr purchased land in the newly acquired Louisiana territory, and intended to invade the Spanish territory and establish a separate republic in the Southwest, or seize land in Spanish America. He was arrested and indicted for treason, and was acquitted on Sept. 1, 1807, after a six-month trial in Richmond, Virginia.
Lewis and Clark: They explored the vast territory west of the Mississippi River by the US, when they where commissioned by Jefferson. They cataloged plants and animals, and established relations with Indian inhabitants. They reached the Rockies, over the Continental Divide, and reached the Pacific in November 1805.
Berlin Decree, 1806: Was created in response to the Orders in Council by the British, in which the French proclaimed a blockade of the British isles, and any ship attempting to enter or leave a British port would be seized by France. The Decree was answered with another Orders in Council, in which all ships must come to England for licenses of trade.
Milan Decree, 1807: Napoleon replied to the continuous British opposition, with the Milan Decree, which was to tighten his so-called Continental System. The decree proclaimed that any vessel that submitted to British regulations or allowed itself to be searched by the Royal Navy, was subject to seizure by France.
Orders in Council: In May 1806, the British followed the Essex decision with the first of several trade regulations, known as the Orders in Council, which established a blockade of part of the continent of Europe and prohibited trade with France, unless American vessels went to British ports for licenses for trade.
impressment: Arbitrary seizure of goods or individuals by a government or its agents for public services. Used by British to regain deserters from the Royal Navy to American vessels during 1790 to 1812. This was one of the reasons for the War of 1812, when British vessels boarded and obtained their crew from the high paying American ships.
Chesapeake-Leopard affair: In 1807 the US Chesapeake was stopped in the mid-Atlantic by the British Leopard. The British demanded the return and surrender of four deserters from the royal navy, in which the Chesapeake’s commanding officer, James Barron, refused, resulting in British attack. Barron relented and the men were seized.
•EMBARGO OF 1807: This law was passed in December 1807 over Federalist opposition, and prohibited United States vessels from trading with European nations during the Napoleonic War. The Embargo Act was in response to the restrictive measure imposed on American neutrality by France and Britain, who where at war with each other. To pressure the nations to respect the neutral rights of the US and to demonstrate the value of trade with the US, Jefferson imposed the embargo instead of open warfare.
Non-Intercourse Act: The Non-Intercourse Act of March 1, 1809, repealed the Embargo Act, and reactivated American commerce with all countries except the warring French and the British. The US also agreed to resume trade with the first nation of the two, who would cease violating neutral rights, pressuring the needs for American goods.
Macon’s Bill No. 2: Nathaniel Macon created the Macon’s Bill No. 2, in May 1810, which was designed to discourage the British and the French from interfering with US commerce, by bribing either the England or France in repealing their restrictions on neutral shipping; who ever obliged, the US would halt all commerce with the other nation.
Tecumseh: A Shawnee leader, who fought against the United States expansion into the Midwest. He opposed any surrender of Native American land to whites, and tried with his brother, Tenskwatawa the "Prophet," in uniting the tribes from American customs, especially liquor. He was defeated at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811.
War of 1812
The war of 1812 was one which the Americans were not prepared to fight. The young congressman known as War Hawks pushed Madison into a struggle for which the country was not prepared and which ended without victory.
War Hawks: A group of militants in Madison’s Democratic-Republican party, who wanted more aggressive policies toward the hostile British and French. Thus creating a war spirit by several young congressman elected in 1810. This group in the House of Representatives, led by Henry Clay preferred war to the "ignominious peace."
War against Great Britain: For the most part, the Napoleon Wars were played out in Europe, and the French accepted the United States merchant marine neutrality by the Berlin and Milan Decrees. Hatred of the British persisted, with the constant violations of neutrality on the seas and in the Great Lakes.
•FEDERALIST OPPOSITION TO THE WAR OF 1812: The Federalist party were deeply opposed to the war, for their lack of support for commercial and diplomatic policies of Jefferson and Madison. Even more so, was their opposition to Jefferson and Madison’s trade programs of neutrality and trade, for example the Non-intercourse act.
Naval Battles in the War of 1812: The beginning of the War of 1812, encounters were with single-ship battles. The frigate Constitution defeated the Guerriere in August 1812, and in the same year, the Untied States seized the British frigate Macedonian. However, the Chesapeake lost to the Shannon, continuing British blockade.
•Results of the War of 1812: After the treaty of Ghent, the British wanted neutral Indian buffer states in the American Northwest and wanted to revise both the American-Canadian boundary. The Treaty of Ghent secured US maritime rights and peace around Europe and the Americas. Rising Indian opposition to American expansion in the Northwest and Southwest was broken, and there was an increased sense of national purpose and awareness.
Fort McHenry, Francis Scott Key: During the War of 1812 on September 13-14, Fort McHenry withstood a 25-hour bombardment by the British Vice-Admiral Alexander Cochane and his fleet, which prompted the famous "Star-spangled Banner," by Francis Scott Key when he saw the flag still standing.
Jackson’s victory at New Orleans: Jackson, during the War of 1812, captured New Orleans with a small army against the British army, which was composed mainly of veterans. This victory on January 8, 1815 occurred after the peace treaty that ended the war.
Essex Junto: The Essex Junto was a name given to the extreme nationalist wing, led by Timothy Pickering, Senator George Cabot, Theophilus Parsons, and several of the Lowell family of merchants and industrialists in New England. It opposed the Embargo act and the War of 1812.
•HARTFORD CONVENTION: The Hartford Convention of 1814 damaged the Federalists with its resolutions to the idea o secession, leaving an idea of disloyalty to use against them. The convention on December 14, 1814 was to oppose the war, which was hurting American industries and commerce. The recommendation of the convention was to have an amendment to the Constitution that would grant taxation and representation in each state, and prohibit congress from the embargo.
Henry Clay, Gallatin, and treaty negotiations: Adams drafted the Monroe Doctrine and arranged for the Treaty of Ghent that ended the War of 1812. Gallatin also was a part in the negotiations of the Treaty of Ghent, as well as Clay, with hope of ending the war of 1812.
Treaty of Ghent: This was an agreement between the United States and Great Britain, in Belgium, on December 24, 1814. This treaty ended the War of 1812, and provided that all territory captured would be returned to the rightful owner. Great controversy occurred over fishing rights and the Northwest Boundary, between England and America.
Industrialization and the transportation revolution were a considerable force in American history, changing the character of life in America by facilitation westward expansion, and urbanization. This period was distinguished by the establishment of factories and the creation of many new inventions to save time, improve transportation and communication, and increase productivity.
transportation revolution: The transportation revolution was the period in which steam power, railroads, canals, roads, bridges, and clipper ships emerged as new forms of transportation, beginning in the 1830s. This allowed Americans to travel across the country and transport goods into new markets that weren’t previously available.
Erie Canal: The Erie Canal, the first major canal project America, was built by New York beginning 1817. Stretching 363 miles from Albany to Buffalo, it was longest canal in western world at the time. It was a symbol of progress when it was opened in 1825, and it later sparked artistic interest in the Hudson River when its use peaked in the 1880s.
National Road(Cumberland Road): The National Road was a highway across America. Construction began in 1811; the road progressed west during early 1800s, advancing father west with each year. Its crushed-stone surface helped and encouraged many settlers to travel into the frontier west.