Effects Of Westward Expansion

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The period from 1800 to 1865 marked a time of immerse sectionalism in American history. Sectionalism grew more intense due to the added conflict of how to embrace new territories gained during Western Expansion. Westward Expansion began with the Louisiana Purchase made by President Thomas Jefferson. The Louisiana Purchase stretched from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains and from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico (Give Me Liberty! 304). The most controversial issue was whether slavery would be allowed in the new territories acquired by the United States. As the philosophy of Manifest Destiny spread among the whole country, the South wanted new slave territories while the North wanted to stop the spread of slavery. According to John O’Sullivan,…show more content…
African Americans were negatively impacted the most during the Westward Expansion because new states were brought into the union favoring slavery, such as Texas. As the expansion across North America continued more slaves were needed to work on farms or plantations in the new areas gained by the United States, which led to a higher slavery demand. Slavery was an unethical means of exploiting Africans for the sake of cheap labor. According to Frederick Norcom, “slavery was only a means for enabling a few to get rich at the expense of others.” He mentions that, “more than 6,000 slaves and 10,000 horses and mules have been sold in Yazoo County alone,” which are some statistics that…show more content…
African Americans were not given an option to express themselves without punishment or death. A plantation owner states that slaves are at the mercy of the owners, “they are always liable to my call without questioning for a moment of propriety of it (Foner 215).” “No negro shall leave the place at any time without my permission,” slaves were treated as objects and they were expected to work under harsh conditions without any ethical morality (Foner 215). Slavery divided people between pro-slavery or anti-slavery. As stated before, the North was against slavery while the South did not see an issue with the expansion of
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