Trent University History 211 Workshop 14: Age of Jackson 19 January 2004



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Trent University

History 211

Workshop 14: Age of Jackson

19 January 2004
Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman and Jon Gjerde Major Problems in American History

Chapter 8 _ Nationalism, Sectionalism, and Expansionism in the Age of Jackson 228-259


A

  1. To what degree was this a period of increasing democracy?

  2. How were notions about “the people” or “the common man” used to celebrate the potential of the United States?

  3. How were these celebrations linked to expansion and “manifest destiny”?

  4. Why was the question of nullification ominous for American nationalists?

  5. What were the major planks of the Democratic party platform?


B

Identify the following people and events:




  1. John C. Calhoun

  2. Daniel Webster

  3. Andrew Jackson

  4. Alamo




  1. Thomas Hart Benton

  2. John Dix

  3. California Gold Rush



C

Define the following terms:




  1. Jacksonian democracy

  2. Rites of representation

  3. Civic war

  4. Political association

  5. Civic culture

  6. Democracy: political rhetoric

  7. Democracy: practice

  8. Process of political engagement




  1. The people

  2. Democratic republicanism

  3. Equal citizenship

  4. Popular opposition

  5. Manifest Destiny

  6. Process of political engagement

  7. Loco Foco

  8. Democratic Whig

  9. Vernacular liberalism



D




  1. “The political invisibility of both women and nonwhites coexisted with their often vivid representation in civic culture and their relatively easy access to public space.” [Mary P. Ryan, “Antebellum Politics as Raucous Democracy,” {Civic Wars:... (Berkeley 1997)} in Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman and Jon Gjerde, Major Problems in American History (Boston, Houghton Mifflin, 2002) 249. Discuss.

  2. “In fact a riot was not so much a breakdown of democratic process as its conduct by another means.” [Ibid, 251] Discuss.

  3. Discuss the disincentives to political engagement in evangelical Christianity, social respectability, liberalism and republicanism.

  4. “Americans were taught to honor the American republic, but not American politics.” [Glenn C. Altschuler and Stuart M. Blumin, “Antebellum Politics as Political Manipulation” {Rude Republic:..(Princeton 2000)} in Hoffman and Gjerde, Major Problems in American History, 259. Discuss.]


E

Comment on the ideas attached to the following historians encountered in this chapter?






  1. Mary Ryan

  2. Glenn C. Altschuler

  3. Stuart M. Blumin

  4. Alexis de Tocqueville

  5. Jean H. Baker

  6. William E. Gienapp

  7. Robert H. Wiebe

  8. Joel H. Silbey

  9. Richard Carwardine

  10. Mark Y. Hanley

  11. William Burley Brown

  12. Richard Bushman



F

1. Resolved that mob activity was essential to Jacksonian popular politics.

2. Resolved that Texas should be Mexican not American.

Issues:

- democratic style; eg parades

- What about Indian removal? [c 7]

- “a white man’s republic”

- Second Party System, 1824ff

- “Corrupt Bargain”

- spoils system

- Whigs vs “King Andrew”

- closely contested politics

- tariffs & Nullification crisis

- westward migration:

- “manifest destiny” ideology

- Texas

- Oregon


- Mexican territories

- 1783 1 million sq mi

- 1848 3 million sq mi

229Q Yet storm clouds were on the horizon, as we shall see, precisely because of the territories in the West.


Documents:

1. John C. Calhoun Argues for the Rights of States, 1828 230






  • vs tariff of abominations and for open market



2. Daniel Webster Lays Out His Nationalist Vision, 1830 231




  • natl govt is supreme



3. Andrew Jackson Condemns the Rights of "Nullification" and Secession, 1832 234




  • Constitution formed a govt in which all people are represented



4. Historian George Bancroft Asserts His Faith in the Wisdom of the People, 1835 235




  • people are supreme in their wisdom



5. Jose Enrique de la Pena Defends Mexico's Actions Against the Texans, 1836 237




  • Alamo from Mexican view



6. John L. O’Sullivan, a Democratic [Politician] Newspaperman Venerates Democracy and the "Democratic Principle," 1837 238




  • Democracy needs to be unbridled

7. Michel Chevelier, a French Visitor Marvels at the Pageantry of Politics, 1839 239

M see ed comments, 228




  • Democrat procession



8. John L. O'Sullivan Defines "Manifest Destiny," 1845 240




  • westward to California

  • coins term MD



9. Senator Thomas Hart Benton Justifies White Supremacy, 1846 241




  • westward for ages



10. Senator John Dix Advocates Expansion into Mexico, 1848 241




  • give way to advancing “wave of civilization”



11. Walter Colton, a Californian Describes the Excitement of the Gold Rush, 1848 243




  • note cultural diversity of workers in mines


Essays:

Is Jacksonian America characterized by the development of civic democracy?



Is democracy a restrictive exercise for white men only? Mary P. Ryan, Antebellum Politics as Raucous Democracy, 244-252 [Civic Wars:... (Berkeley 1997)94-131]





  • look at chaotic, colourful politics of the street: represent a public democracy

  • Berkeley

244 NYC Castle Garden 1834: parades Whigs & Jacksonians 15,000 to 24,000 people

244 Loco Foco movement

245 note other parades elsewhere

245 Tammany Hall

245 people defined by political affiliation

246Q Public meetings were part cause and part effect of a major campaign to dissolve the bonds of deference that wove through republican institutions and to build democratic procedures.

246-7 Great NY County Meeting, 30 Oct 1835

247 democracy of public meetings?

247Q By organizing publicly in order to object to the policies of an administration sitting in Washington, they [Whigs] provided the final solidification of a democracy of difference: They practiced and legitimized open, institutionalized, popular opposition.

247 Loco Foco public meeting = democracy; appeal to people

M e.g. nominating conventions

248 system moved from populist Democrats to Whigs, from NE to SW, & included third parties

248 rhetoric and actual = differ

249Q In fact one of the major consequences of the culture of public meetings was to beg the question of who were, exactly, the people.

249Q The notion of equal rights was the cutting edge (hardly the culmination) of a movement to expand access to democratic citizenship.

249 rhetoric people v aristocracy

249Q The political invisibility of both women and nonwhites coexisted with their often vivid representation in civic culture and their relatively easy access to public space. This contradiction suggests that participation in formal politics, the right to act as a citizen, was by no means an automatic translation from social and cultural publicness.

251Q In general antebellum citizens treasured public assembly at least as much as public order.

251Q In fact a riot was not so much a breakdown of democratic process as its conduct by another means.
Glenn C. Altschuler and Stuart M. Blumin, “Antebellum Politics as Political Manipulation” 252-259 [Rude Republic:..(Princeton 2000) 3-11]



253Q The campaign spectacle of parades and mass rallies, and the high energy of election days in which very large proportions of eligible voters cast ballots, were only part of the process of political engagement. Prior to these events on the political calendar were the local party caucuses open to all the party’s adherents, and the various nominating conventions to which these meetings of ordinary citizens sent delegates to represent them.

254Q Political engagement is in many respects a behavioral phenomenon, consisting of participation of various sorts in the more and less institutionalized aspects of the political process. ... They could also neglect to do these things.... And just as political participation can vary, so too can political attitude – from enthusiasm to indifference, from belief to skepticism, from appreciation to hostility.
254-5 political action = mostly partisan

255 religion vs politics

255 Carwardine sees adversarial but religion & politics seem organic to him for crusades vs “alcohol, slavery and Catholicism”

255 Mark Y Hanley: “the Protestant quarrel with the American republic” persisted

256 political activism vs upper and middle class respectability

256Q Without apology they [some Americans] created an egalitarian politics appropriate to what we here call a rude republic – a political nation just taking shape, and one that prided itself on its challenge to deference and its disdain for the formalities of polite address.

257Q Historians ordinarily discuss liberalism as a well-reasoned article of conviction, and as a mode of political action that would use politics to limit the prerogatives of the state and to enlarge individual freedoms.

257Q But we believe it is possible to identify another kind of liberalism that did little to nurture, and much to discourage, political participation.

257 e.g. interest in private; family

258 republicanism v liberalism

258 republicanism fueled anti-party feeling in early 2nd party system

258 George Washington & Farewell Address



259Q [At school] Americans were taught to honor the American republic, but not American politics.

258-9 no Civics, no US politics after Re


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