All the struggling and changing of the foreign and domestic policies from 1840 to 1850 eventually brought about a vast new territory into the West. After compromising with the British over Oregon, dealing with the annexation of Texas, and fighting Mexico over California and New Mexico, the United States nearly grew half in size. The new land had much to offer for those who were struggling and seeking to start fresh. Many moved out and spread out to the West through trails established from the East, such as the Oregon and California trail. As a strong advocate of Manifest Destiny, James K. Polk was successful in fulfilling the dream of his and of many Americans to stretch the land from coast to coast.
It helped our nation because we needed people to move out west and make something of their lives. He also signed the Morrill Act which gave financial aid to the colleges of each state. All of the policies and treaty’s that Lincoln assigned helped our country incredibly. This great president also brought our country back together as one. When he tried to free the slaves by assigning the Emancipation Proclamation the opposing states left the United States and formed the Confederacy which led to the civil war.
These people believed that this movement was predestined by God, which they must go from sea to shining sea. Americans did not just move because of this reason, there were other reasons that had contributed to their migration. “Manifest Destiny said that the Anglo-Saxon peoples of America had the right and indeed the duty to spread the blessings of freedom and civilization to those who dwelled in darkness” (Henderson 31). Americans moved to the west for more practical reasons. One of them was to gain land.
The Reconstruction-Era The Reconstruction-era offered numerous opportunities to African-Americans, by attempting to secure the rights for ex-slaves, but the opportunities presented even more obstacles to them. The thought of freedom intrigued the African-Americans at first, but many of them quickly changed their minds after experiencing it. Henry William Ravenel, a slaveowner, proclaimed, "When they were told they were free, some said they did not wish to be free, and they were silenced with threats of being shot (Firsthand 24)." The Reconstruction-era effected the white settlers and their crops, as well, posing yet more obstacles for the already-struggling African-Americans. The hardships endured throughout this period of history were very immense and the struggle toward freedom and equality held a heavy price for all.
Douglass believed that since Auld obtained slave owning from marriage, it made him more of an unpleasant master because he wasn’t used to being around slavery and having so much power. Fredrick Douglass also was convinced that religious slaveholders were false Christians because they became more self-righteous and thought that God gave them the power to hold slaves. By telling stories to the reader, Douglass hoped to bring awareness to the harsh subject of slavery and show how the slaves kept hope during these miserable times.
Learning all these good deals about West, many Americans left their homeland for a new start in the West. During the West movement of 1830’s and 1840’s, there were many conflicts that American settlers faced. The first problem settlers had to solve was relations with the Native Americans. As the numbers of American settlers grew, the life of Native Americans was greatly affected. The Native Americans tried to maintain their cultural traditions and the peace with white settlers, but they were often forced to move out of their homeland.
The Indians also had a hard time excepting the invasions on new territories, which led to many wars. This resulted in a large decrease of the Indian population, so some Indians turned to Cristianity and other European traditions. On the otherhand, many Indians insisted that European beliefs should exist only amongst themselves. They had no business trying to introduce a new religion when the Indian's traditions have been practiced for years. The Indians during this time were forced to accept the Europeans establishing new territories, even if they did not belong to them.
In 1845, a fellow named John C. Calhoun coined the term "Manifest Destiny." The term Manifest Destiny was a slogan for westward expansion during the 1840's. In the west there was plenty of land, national security, the spread of democracy, urbanization, but there was also poverty out west. People moved out west in search for a new life such as a new beginning. Moving out west, settlers from the east were taking a risk of a lot of things.
The Americans believed that Native Americans felt obligated to move off of the land because of the Manifest Destiny. They believed that the Native Americans were happy to leave. The Americans also thought that by moving the Native Americans to reservations that they were helping the Native Americans. The reservations, the Americans thought would “free them from the power of the states,”(Jackson 133) and force the Native Americans to move to leave their 'savage' ways behind. They thought that by forcing the Native Americans to assimilate to the Americans that they Native Americans would be “a happy and prosperous people,”(Jackson133) instead of the savages the Americans believed them to be.
Lincoln approved Pacific Railway Act of 1862, granting two railroad companies the right to build the first American transcontinental railroad, (Clark 432). The transcontinental railroad would eventually become a symbol of much-needed unity, repairing the sectionalism that had once divided the nation during the Civil War. The construction of the transcontinental railroad was also an extension of the transportation revolution. Once commodities such as gold were found in the western half of America, many individuals decided to move themselves and their families out west in search of opportunity. Not only did the railroad help to transport people, but it also it allowed for goods to be delivered from companies in the east.