The Era of Good Feelings

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“The Era of Good Feelings”, is marked by the beginning of James Monroe’s first term as president and is said coincide with his presidency. With the end of the War of 1812, the people of America began to feel optimistic and for the first time unified as a nation. With America’s continued to growth and development, we see an increase in nationalism among the people that defines this time as “The Era of Good Feelings”. These years can also be seen as a time of political cooperation and as Charles S. Sydnor describes it, “a single-party situation… when the Federalist organization disintegrated after the War of 1812”(439). However, this nationalism that unified the country, also blinded them from the problems and debates that were occurring during a time of what most believed to be a time of peace and harmony. The term “The Era of Good Feelings”, can therefor be misleading when looking at the actual events of this time period.
The Federalist party is said to have been dissolved during the time of James Monroe’s Presidency. Many believe that this was mostly the fault of Hartford Convention, where the federalist voiced their opposition of the War of 1812 and urged for money on behalf of their loses from the war. These actions, made the Federalists look like spoiled brats in the eyes of the american people, causing them to loose most of their support. Members of this party soon realized that they did not have any reasons left to fight for their party, “…since the Republicans had taken over all (as they saw it) that was of permanent value in the Federalist program”(Ammon, 388). The Presidential election of 1816 confirmed the collapse of the Federalist party as James Monroe easily won the election against Rufus King. With the Republicans o...

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