Primary Sources (Barbé-Marbois, Livingston, Monroe), (Francois de, Robert R., James), edited by Hunter Miller. “Treaty between the United States of America and the French Republic”, 2008, Yale Law School, Lillian Goldman Law Library, The Avalon Project- documents in Law, History, and Diplomacy. April 9, 2011. <http://avalon.law.yale.edu/19th_century/louis1.asp>
A copy of the original document verifying the Louisiana Purchase, this was an invaluable resource. Showing the actual treaty signing over the massive amount of territory, it provides dates, and names of those directly involved in its signing. The articles are not all equally prominent, but it gave us the exact terms of the Purchase that the dealmakers agreed upon. This website allows us to see the deal in depth, and to evaluate its affects on America and the French Republic. We learned that in the treaty, France ensures their evacuation of the territory, and mentions how the territory is not really part of the United States until the Senate agrees. This shows how much power the Senate has, and how if they had not agreed, the United States may never have bought that territory, or began westward expansion. Also, the treaty does mention something about the Native American tribes, but any agreements regarding their rights to land were later ignored by the government.
(Barbé-Marbois, Livingston, Monroe) (François de, Robert R., James). ‘The Louisiana Purchase Transcriptions.” 1996, 1803. The National Archives. May 1, 2011. <http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/american_originals/louistxt.html>
Found in the National Archives, this resource is very useful because it is a primary source, with the seals of the actual people involved in the purchase. Rather than the previous source, it contains more than the actual treaty. It also contains two separate accompanying documents which list the exact terms of the treaty, mostly financially. From this we have learned that the treaty was not just paid in cash. Napoleon used the opportunity to pay off much of the accumulated debt that France owed to the United States. In this, they made themselves tied to America even less. Also, the French and Americans regulated a strict schedule for their payment, and had one year to ratify the treaty. The treaties were signed in French and English, and they created temporary peace between the nations.
Jefferson, Thomas. "Thomas Jefferson Annual Message." Address. Library of Congress. Web. 2 May 2011.
The Library of Congress is the best source to find good information. These letters are authoritative because they've never been modified. This is an address that Jefferson gave to Congress during the debate the Louisiana Purchase. From this, I learn what Jefferson saw most promising in the purchase. He finds great value in westward expansion and tells his fellow officials how important the lack of clashing nations is to the “fertility of the country”. In the majority of the letter, Jefferson speaks of foreign relations, revealing how much he valued them. Later in the letter, Jefferson brings up the issue of the national debt. The Louisiana Purchase was very expensive, but Jefferson saw promise in long-term profit.
Livingston, Robert. “Treatise on Whether it Be Advantageous For France To Take Possession of Louisiana.” History Buff. May 28th, 2011. <http://www.historybuff.com/library/ref7203.html>
This article was translated from an original document that Livingston presented to the French Government. It was with a series of other articles, mainly from American Newspapers such as the Massachusetts Federalist. It seems to be a creditable source, and it holds these articles and primary documents that were crucial to the Louisiana Purchase. Livingston attempts to discuss all of the pros of the Purchase with the French Government. He emphasizes how it would be more beneficial to sell Louisiana than to keep it, or that France could make much less use with Louisiana than it was worth. He explains how the territory would be good for America, and not as profitable for France. One topic that is emphasized is the colonization of Louisiana. He restates France’s colonization of the Caribbean, and how much of a profit that provides France. If the French were to attempt to take Louisiana, they would not have enough people or time to settle and cultivate the land for it to make them significant wealth. He continues the argument, eventually concluding that the French should seriously consider the American proposal of a Louisiana Purchase.
Madison, James. "The Writings of James Madison." Letter to Robert R. Livingston. 29 July 1803. Library of Congress. Library of Congress. Web. 2 May 2011.
Primary sources give great perspective into real feelings of the time. This letter from Madison shows how he supported the spur-of-the-moment decision. The source probably one of the most trustworthy sources out there. It's from the Library of Congress. It was written within the same year. From it, I learned that many influential figures supported the Louisiana Purchase. Madison had to help convince other members of the government that the Louisiana Purchase was a good idea. With this letter, I can see how he did it. Madison foresaw profit coming from the Louisiana Purchase from land buyers.
Unknown. "James Monroe Leaves for France." 16 Mar. 1803, Column 3 sec.: 2. History Buff. Web. 30 May 2011.
Newspapers provide a social point of view rather than a political one because they are meant for consumption by the public. The website this came from is trustworthy because they have no reason to lie. They are a non-profit organization built to provide primary sources for education. This source shows the doubt and confusion of the rest of the nation had. The time is before the purchase but it is becoming clear to the nation that something is going on. It revealed that George Washington had actually called James Monroe out on not doing what he was supposed to on a previous trip to France. The article shows how American citizens are cautious about where they put their trust. The author of the newspaper article concludes that there are a few things that could possibly happen but he expresses the hope of the nation. The ultimate goal is total “independence of the United States”.
Secondary Sources Alagna, Magdalena. The Louisiana Purchase: Expanding America’s Boundaries. New York: Rosen Pub., 2004.
Although this book lists many primary sources, mainly pictures, it is a very brief account of the Louisiana Purchase. Its main points discuss how communication was difficult between Europe and America, and how that changed many things such as treaties between France, The United States, and Spain, wars, and even the ratification of the Louisiana Purchase. Congress played a big role in the ratification, and especially controversy surrounding the Purchase. Power distribution following the acquisition of such a huge amount of land was contested between Federalists and Republicans, and helped define the parties. Also, the way Congress would be altered with more land added to the west and the South concerned many Northerners. They argued whether or not the Purchase was actually constitutional, since the government does not have that power written explicitly in the original Constitution. However, since Jefferson’s vision of westward expansion overrode his concerns, and Congress agreed with him, the Purchase was deemed legal in the eyes of the United States. After dealing with the legalities of the Purchase, the book is useful in the way it describes the effects following the purchase. While some of the descriptions are broad, and the book obviously does not contain all of the outcomes, it is a foundation upon which we can further conduct our research.
Balleck, Barry J. "When the Ends Justify the Means: Thomas Jefferson and the Louisiana Purchase." Presidential Studies Quarterly (1992): 679-96. JSTOR. Web. 2 May 2011.
A scholarly journal is trustworthy because it is meant for education instead of persuasion. This article is about the controversy of Jefferson's decision about the Louisiana Purchase. There was both internal and external conflict. Some said it was the “greatest achievement of his presidency” while others saw it as a waste of money. Even Jefferson had self doubts. This article also brings up the agricultural aspects of the Louisiana Purchase, which other articles never mentioned it. The extra land would not solely provide more land for selling, but also more land for farming. More farming would lead to more food which could lead to increased population and economic benefit. This article is helpful because it touches on all aspects of the decision, at least on the American side.
Billington, Ray Allen, and Martin Ridge. Westward Expansion: a History of the American Frontier. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico, 2001. Print.
A promising aspect of this book is that according to Google Scholar, it's been cited by over 412 other sources. Also, this book was created for college students; it was printed at a university press. This book is a broad context source so it encompasses all of westward expansion, not just the Louisiana Purchase, though it is certainly brought up. The book reviews all of the land areas acquired by the United States of America. While the Louisiana Purchase was a deal with France, Spain and Mexico both influenced the Louisiana Purchase and was forming land deals with the United States at the same time. From this book, I learned what causes and effects relating the Louisiana Purchase to Spain. For example, when the Louisiana Purchase was acquired, there was a huge increase in the risk of the United States taking Texas because after the treaty, the United States had more land surrounding Texas.
Blumberg, Rhoda. What’s the Deal?” Washington D.C.: National Geographic Society, 1998.
A source found as a result of another bibliography, this source helped to explain some of the major events leading up to the Louisiana Purchase controversy. It explains the quasi war, an often untold part of American history. This was an undeclared naval war between France and the United States. Treaties involving France, Spain, England, and the United States caused lots of conflict, and strained peace slowly turned into war. Uneasy about the newfound Spanish and English power in America, the French tried to find a way to defend themselves. They could not invade America; they didn’t have a large enough army. Instead, they took American ships, using the excuse that they were preventing English trade. However, hundreds of ships were taken, and Americans sent over diplomats. When an end of the war was refused, angry Americans, especially president John Adams, all prepared to declare war. News of this reached France, and chaos erupted, out of which Napoleon eventually was able to take power by force. He signed a treaty ending the war, and started to try to achieve his dream of world conquest. Therefore, in a way, the quasi war led to one of the most successful military leaders of all time, and a beginning of stress between the States and France over territory in North America.*
Bowman, Albert H. "Pichon, the United States, and Louisiana." Diplomatic History, Journal of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations 1.3 (1977): 257-70. Web.
A scholarly journal, this article is definitely creditable. The key output of this journal was that it helped us to understand one of the key players in the Purchase of the Louisiana Purchase; Louis-André Pichon. Although he was young, Pichon was an enormously important correspondent during the negotiations of the Purchase. He was hired by Talleyrand, and was told to go be a peacemaker in America. When he was warned by Jefferson and Madison in turn of the dangers to France if they attempted to retake the Mississippi, he wrote a thesis to Napoleon. This was one of the main things Napoleon took into consideration when making his decision regarding Louisiana, because Pichon’s thesis explains how dreams of an American empire should be discarded to retain peace with America. He stresses their need to avoid unpleasant consequences, or war with the new, yet strong republican nation.*
Burgan, Michael. The Louisiana Purchase: From Independence to Lewis and Clark. Chicago: Heinemann Library, 2007.
While trying to find reliable sources, this book came up on many searches. It contains many charts, timelines, and dates of before, during, and after the Purchase. Giving a more detailed explanation, especially for a book of such short length, it provided more explicit facts rather than general topics. It also discusses the role of Spain often. Since this matter is not present in many other sources, this was very useful. Allowing us to see the bigger picture surrounding the Purchase, it was helpful seeing who else was involved. In fact, Spain was a major part of westward expansion in the United States. Tensions and times of peace determined their trade up and down the Mississippi, which is a crucial part of the American economy, even today. Also, Spain affected how much people moved west, and even had spies favoring them inside the government. Spain and its relations with other countries in Europe and the Americas greatly influenced decisions made regarding westward expansion and manifest destiny.
Cerami, Charles A. Jefferson’s Great Gamble, the remarkable story of Jefferson, Napoleon, and the men behind the Louisiana Purchase. Naperville: Sourcebooks Inc., 2003.
Actually, this source was found through the bibliography of one of the sources I found previously. It contains a wealth of information, but certain chapters contain specifics that will immensely help us to understand the Louisiana Purchase. Unique compared to previous sources, this book describes the various officials and correspondents involved in the Louisiana Purchase. It gives insight to why certain decisions were made, and how spontaneous decisions and personalities affected the course of history. It describes the rise to power that many French and American officials took, and how much the politics, and some acting on the part of Jefferson and Napoleon, changed negotiations from treaties of peace if France took over America, to discussions concerning the purchase of Louisiana. It contains a few quoted primary sources as well; letters between American officials discussing pros and cons the Purchase would have on the goals of America.*
(Cesar, Page), (Wayne T. De, Susan). “Jefferson Buys Louisiana Purchase, and the Nation Moves Westward”. Spring 2003, The National Archives. May 2nd, 2011. <http://www.archives.gov/publications/prologue/2003/spring/louisiana-purchase.html>
This source was also found in the national archives, so while it is not primary, we are sure it is authoritative. It is a series of articles on the Louisiana Purchase written by two people who have worked with the National Archives for many years. It summarizes the Louisiana Purchase in a prologue, and then proceeds to list the financial negotiations, and the banks involved in the Purchase. It also provided an interesting bit of information, the fact that the purchase resulted in over thirty documents. Originally, Jefferson was just hoping to have a much simpler transaction; one that left the United States in control of New Orleans. While they had mostly been able to trade up and down the river when Spanish held possession, they were not really independent or situated near the river when France held possession of Louisiana before the treaty of Fontainebleau. Now, facing blockage on the river, Jefferson was afraid of a greatly weakened economy. He hoped to renew rights to the river, and was surprised to be offered the whole territory. Also, the article provides information on the ceremony initiating Louisiana into the United States; one that involved the raising and lowering of the Spanish and French flags before raising the American one. Finally, while it is not very useful, there is information about how the documents came into the possession of the archives and were protected from the effects of time.
Fradin, Dennis B. The Louisiana Purchase: Turning Points in U.S. History. New York: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2010.
Fradin’s book was found through the resource of Google Scholar, and has appeared much throughout our searches for valuable and accurate resources. A basic description of the Louisiana Purchase, it provides background information beforehand, and also a description of how this Purchase changed American History, relating directly to our research topic. This book also includes a timeline of events leading up to the purchase, and many valuable maps and pictures to aid us in our final result. Another bonus of using this source was that at the end of the book, there is a bibliography of the sources the author used. Looking into these sources, they are longer, with a more in depth analysis of the Louisiana Purchase. Once we get access to these books, we will be able to continue more detailed research to get a better understanding of our topic. We learned more about the French side of the Purchase, and what their motives were for selling the enormous piece of land. Also, the timeline at the end helped us get a general sense of events, which will help us in our cause and effect chart on the final project. The Louisiana Purchase was a result of the dreams of two different leaders essential to the tapestry of history; Napoleon and Jefferson.
Fleming, Thomas. The Louisiana Purchase. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2003
I found out that this source is a very useful context source. It deals with the details surrounding controversy leading up to the purchase. From other sources, the ideas of tensions with France and Spain always leads up to the purchase, however, the sources never explained exactly what happened. This source explains how Napoleon rose to power, and how tensions grew between the United States and France, who were the only two world republics at the time. It discusses the treaty of Mortefontaine and San Ildefonso, and how those two treaties were somewhat contradictory. At the time, Jefferson wanted to expand west, and France wanted to stop that movement. Since one was a peace treaty with the US, and one ceded Louisiana to France, France was implying that they could blockade westward expansion, and still remain allies with the US. In later years, Americans made their point in the fact that this was not true, and helped to bring down France’s North American empire in the Caribbean, and in America. Delving deeply into the controversy leading up to, surrounding, and following the purchase, this book acts well as a context source, and as a way to begin much more detailed research on our topic.
Hosmer, James K. The History of the Louisiana Purchase. New York: D. Appleton and, 1902. Google Books. Google. Web. 22 Apr. 2011.
This book is truly focused on the Louisiana Purchase and every aspect about it. It's been used as a college book for students. It's incredibly factual and informational. The book is connected directly and exactly to our topic, the Louisiana Purchase. I've taken in information about Louisiana under Spain and France and also about the influences of Napoleon Bonaparte and Thomas Jefferson. I learned that Napoleon's family was not just a trivial persuader but a major advisor, especially his two brothers, Lucien and Joseph. And Jefferson faced much controversy in his idea. Almost everyone else in the country didn't want anything more than the port of New Orleans.
Kukla, Jon. A Wilderness so Immense: the Louisiana Purchase and the Destiny of America.
New York: Anchor, 2004. Print.
Jon Kukla's book has a great quantity of information on the American perspective of the Louisiana Purchase. It focuses on Jefferson and works specifically, sometimes provides day to day descriptions. Some of the descriptions in the book are probably supposed by the author. This book talks about all the relative preceding events of the Louisiana Purchase. The most emphasized decade is 1793-1803. The book brings out the international politics of the Louisiana Purchase from Jefferson's point of view. From this source I learned about Thomas Jefferson personally. I discovered that he even had scientific relations with France. I gained insight into Jefferson's personality, which of course affected the happenings of the Louisiana Purchase.
Marshall, Thomas Maitland. A History of the Western Boundary of the Louisiana Purchase: 1819-1841. Berkeley: University of California, 1914. Google Books. Google. Web. 19 Apr. 2011.
Although it's an old source, this book has been cited by many other authors. Also, this copy has the footnote citations of a scholarly journal. The author was a history professor. The book explores in detail all the events leading up to the purchase of Louisiana territory. After that it talks about effects on other people such as the Spanish and the Native Americans. Using this book, I gained insight into all the attempts to gain Texas because of the Louisiana Purchase. I also learned a bit about some of the attempts to control the Native American situation, mostly in Texas. I discovered that Americans tried to divide and conquer Texan Native Americans by splitting them up into those who were indigenous to Texas and those who had migrated there from Mexico or the North. After that, they further divide into more groups. The book also describes the individual tribes in Texas.
McDougall, Walter A. Promised Land, Crusader State: The American Encounter with the world since 1776. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1997.
This resource was recommended by the teacher of our course, and is a creditable source. It contains a wealth of information, yet the section we used focused on expansionism. This relates directly to our thesis, about how manifest destiny and expansionism changed the American mindset following the Louisiana Purchase. It emphasizes how America is all about opportunity, and for generations, people have always tried to take that opportunity to its fullest potential. It references Frederick Jackson Turner, and others who helped distinguish an identity for the unfamiliar American “frontier”. The book describes how national growth in America has always been associated with manifest destiny. America was founded upon principles of freedom, and we want to spread that message and those principles as far throughout the world as we can. Americans around the time of the Louisiana Purchase were trying to create a culture separate from those of Europe. However, they first had to rid the continent of those close by threats and foreign influences. Americans felt that prevention of expansion was an infringement on freedom, which made them want to expand even more than before. This book highlights and supports all the major points we emphasize, and supports the argument that the Louisiana Purchase and Westward Expansion, helped by manifest destiny, reshaped the American mindset and the boundaries of the American empire.
McNeese, Tim. The Louisiana Purchase: Growth of a Nation. New York: Infobase, 2009. Print.
Though this book is appears short and childish, it's actually full of a lot of useful facts. The book is reliable because it shows no bias, giving no reason to give misinformation. Also, this book was created as part of a series to teach students. It is stronger in quality than it is in quantity of information. The book is directly on the topic of the Louisiana Purchase. This book explores all the factors and events that contributed to the final signing of the treaty. From this book, I learned about the people that compelled the influential men, especially Napoleon Bonaparte. I also found out the influence his family had in situations like the infamous “bathtub meeting”. Additionally, I further understood the situation of France and the United States of America at the time of the Louisiana Purchase.
Philllips, Faye. "Historical Perspectives, 1682-1815." The Louisiana Purchase: A Heritage Explored. Louisiana State University. Web. 6 May 2011.
I find sources from universities to be the most trustworthy and authoritative. Their mission is to educate. This website from Louisiana State University tells everything about the Louisiana Territory from 1682 to 1815. It talks most specifically about the area surrounding New Orleans (also known as the Territory of Orleans), which is good for specifics. I focused on the section from 1803 to 1815. At the time, there was much conflict about abolition. Doubling the size of the country doubled the size of the land that had to be appointed slave state or free state. The area around New Orleans not only became a slave area, but slaves there had even less rights than in other parts of the South. All of the Americans migrating into the Louisiana Purchase also caused issues with the Native Americans who had already been living there.*
Shea, Therese. The Louisiana Purchase. New York: PowerKids Press, 2009.
Giving a long background involving specifics, as well as how Jefferson approached the new territory following the Purchase, Shea also provides more information regarding slavery’s impact on the States before and after the Louisiana Purchase. While the Purchase was surrounded in arguments and debates over slavery in the territory, it is really a slave revolt that helped America to double in size. Before 1803, Napoleon had been defeated in a slave revolt in Haiti. Without a hold on some part of the Caribbean, Napoleon lost a lot of wealth. With a war against Britain drawing near, Napoleon knew he needed money. He no longer had hopes of an American Empire, now that his plans for Central America had been foiled. Having no need for Louisiana, other than its potential monetary value, he decided to offer it to the United States. Rather than just getting control of New Orleans, this provided the opportunity for a much larger deal, benefitting France, and America. This source was found on Google books, so we were unsure if it was completely authoritative, but its information matches that of creditable sources, so we are led to believe it is correct.
Sloane, William M. "The World Aspects of the Louisiana Purchase." The American Historical Review 9.3 (1904): 507-21. JSTOR. Web. 6 May 2011.
This old scholarly journal was published almost exactly a century after the Louisiana Purchase was made. It's authoritative because it was published by the University of Chicago and written by a professor purely for education. The article talks about effects of the Louisiana Purchase in other parts of the world. Although it seems slightly irrelevant, it mildly affected future foreign relations. With France no longer focused on the United States of America, Napoleon was more free to do other things. I learned that at the time, France wanted control of India even though England had it. With the extra troops that had retreated from the United States, France reorganized its force in India and made it stronger. This worried Indians so they made a strong army. This caused the British to worry and fight.*
Waterman, Lynn. "Louisiana Purchase." Legacy Preservation Library. 2001. Web. 6 May 2011.
With websites, it's often hard to judge credibility. When I first found this website, I was skeptical. Upon further examination, however, I realized that it was meant for education, not persuasion. The main website was created to preserve knowledge of the past. This article is about the political consequences of the Louisiana Purchase. This helps to build on our argument seeing as our focus is mostly the effects of the Louisiana Purchase, and how they changed the Nation. This article tells how the Louisiana Purchase had a part in the slavery debate and eventually the Civil War. This article brought forth all the connections that I had never realized. The Louisiana Purchase was a huge expanse of land owned by the United States and the slave debate required the division of the land into free states and slave states. Also, a big reason the Louisiana Purchase was built was to gain control of the port of New Orleans. When the South had it in the Civil War, it gave them an advantage.*