The Louisiana Purchase is arguably known by many to be one of Americas’ greatest accomplishments in the terms of westward expansion, and also one of Jefferson’s greatest achievements as president. Although, few are aware of the most difficult, if not hypocritical choices that challenged Jefferson and his morals. These dilemmas, which tested Jefferson’s authority as president, were unavoidable in order to accomplish the necessary expansion of the United States territory.
The War of 1812 has often been called America’s forgotten war. Wedged between the Revolutionary and Civil War, its causes, battles, and consequences are unknown to most Americans. The major causes of the War of 1812 were a series of economic revisions passed by the British and French against the United States as unintended consequences of the Napoleonic Wars and American unhappiness at the British practice of impressment, especially after the Chesapeake incident of 1807. In response to the 1806 British Orders in Council, which hurt American trade, the US (under Thomas Jefferson) first tried various retaliatory embargoes against the British. However these embargoes hurt the US far more than they did Britain, angering American citizens and helping the cause of War Hawks (people who favored going to war) in Congress like Henry Clay. In 1812, after defeating DeWitt Clinton in the presidential election, James Madison asked Congress to declare war against Britain which they did. There were numerous battles fought in Canada, and the Northern United States, as well as naval battles, but neither side could gain a definitive advantage. By mid 1814, the War of 1812 was becoming more costly and had lasted longer than either side had anticipated. Britain, which had other issues to deal with, chief among them the Napoleonic Wars, began to look for a way to get out of the war. In the Belgian city of Ghent American negotiators met with British diplomats. After considerable argument the treaty of Ghent was signed, officially ending the war.
By far, the most enduring aspect of Jefferson is the philosophies he held. These philosophies were brought up during his contentious debates against Hamilton during Washington’s presidency. At first, Hamilton prevailed and saw his philosophies become policies. Though, later, Jefferson was able to implement his philosophies himself. These famous philosophies of Jefferson were simple. He envisioned an agrarian democratic society, where the states had an upper hand in terms of federal-state power, and the Constitution was read in a strict sense (i.e. not permitting anything not specifically stated). In terms of foreign relations, Jefferson favored the French. This was not a long-lived love, though, with the many horrible things that happened between the U.S. and the French. These opinions held by Jefferson were opposite Hamilton, and both managed to be the foundations of their own parties: the Democratic-Republicans and the Federalists, respectively. He also hated the thought of the president holding a sense of nobility, as will become evident during his presidency.
Introduction With the ongoing battles between England and France in the early 19th century, the newly formed United States found itself thrust in the middle of this struggle. In the early part of the century Napoleon was on a mission to once again establish a mighty French empire of early years. But with the build up of the royal British Navy the English were trying fiercely to hold Napoleon in check. The United States was determined to stay neutral and continue its trading with both nations. However several mandates passed by both France and England made this very difficult. With England’s naval blockade and the repeated search and seizure of American trade vessels, the United States, led by an aggressive group of leaders in congress known as the Young War Hawks, took a very aggressive approach to Britain and its royal navy. However, the War Hawks and President Madison also had plans of expansion in mind, to extend its boarders to the North Pole, home to royal colonies of the now hated Great Britain. With this plan and the negative feeling toward Britain, the war was just around the corner. And in June of 1812, a full-fledged war was upon them. The war, which lasted approximately two years, was a very bloody and costly battle to both the United States and Britain. Systematic Analysis To begin to look at this war we must take a look at the system the world was in at the time. The world was dominated by a bi-polar system, with France and England being the two poles.
Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were both men for the greater good and for the future of the nation. Jefferson and Hamilton had their differences, and public policies but also similarities. Thomas and Alexander were both part of different political parties. The political parties were called Federalists and anti-Federalists. Federalists were led by Alexander Hamilton who were a group of people were for a strong governments and strong government. The anti-federalist’s leader was none other but Thomas Jefferson. The anti-federalists were for a state and local government. The main comparison among these two gentlemen were that they were both leaders of their own political party. The other difference was their view on both of the types of
The Jeffersonian-Republicans (also known as the Democratic-Republicans) were opposed to the Federalists from before 1801-1817. Leaders Thomas Jefferson and James Madison created the party in order to oppose the economic and foreign policies of Alexander Hamilton and the Federalist Party. The Democratic-Republicans supported the French, whereas the Federalists supported the British. Each party had its set of views. The Federalists supported a loose interpretation of the Constitution, a strong central government, high tariffs, a navy, military spending, a national debt, and a national bank (all ideas of the Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton). The Democratic-Republicans opposed all of the said ideas and fought for states' rights and the citizens to govern the nation. Originally, each of these parties stuck to their own views and ideas, but eventually would accept eachother's views and use them as their own.
Alexander Hamilton exerted the most influence in the new Federalist Party. He believed that only an enlightened ruling class could produce a stable and effective federal government. The government therefore needed the support of wealthy men. Thomas Jefferson and the Republicans defended more the rights of the common man and an agrarian society with little power from the federal government. His basic principle was "in general I believe the decisions of the people in a body will be more honest and more disinterested than those of wealthy men."
As the country grows and matures into a great nation, people realize that change is inevitable and sometimes even needed. Within the time period of 1802 to 1817, many Jeffersonian Republicans realized that their ideals and principles weren’t always best for the nation. That is why they adopted some of the ideals of the old Federalist Party. Also, during this time, the Federalists died out. As realized after the Hartford Convention, the nation did not need nor want the Federalists anymore if the Democratic Republicans could get the job done. Although people changed a great deal during this time, it seemed to be beneficial to the nation. If people had not grown and never continued to learn and aspire to what is needed, then we may have never gotten to this great nation that the United States of America is today.
Jefferson didn't out right abandon Republican views. Jefferson's mission was to restore republicanism, to check the growth of government power, and to stop the decline of virute that had set in during Federalist rule. In his inaugural address he stated, "The will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; the minority posses their equal rights, which equal law must project, and to violate would be oppression." A Republican view was to be ruled by informed masses which is majority rule. The common good pointed in the direction of Federalism. Jefferson had to do soemthing about the Barbary Pirates. He sent a navy to the shores of Tripoli. After four years, a treaty was signed. The small gunboats that were used in the war fascinated Jefferson so he deployed 200 of these gunboats along the coast to guard American shores. Republicans believed in a minimal army and navy. Jefferson aboandoned Republicanism by entering into the Tripolitan War and then keeping a navy along the Untied States' coast after the war. The United States was given the chance to buy all of Lousiana for $15 million. Jefferson knew that this would be technically unconstitution but he still sumbitted the treaties to the Senate. Once again, Jefferson changed from Republican views to Federalist views because of his realist and public official side. Jefferson knew this would help the United States grow and it would keep Louisana out of the hands of other countries in Europe. Because of the war between France and Britain, the United States wanted to perserve their neutrality. The United States could trade with either of the countries without facing attacks. Jefferson asked Congress for an embargo.
Thomas Jefferson has been a household name and has been greatly known by everyone in the United States since the late 1700’s. Not only was he present and play a crucial role in the American Revolution, but he also wrote the Declaration of independence and was also the third President of the United States. During his time as president his views and beliefs really countered the views of famous federalists of that time. (George Washington and John Adams) Jefferson had very passionate beliefs that favored the rights of the people and really gave the people and the states a lot more power than the Federalist Party believed they should have. “Jefferson’s political platform called for shrinking the infant
The year of 1803 significantly changed our nation eternally. It stunned many people. In no way, shape or form, did we ever believe that our nation would expand so rapidly. What started with the small purchase of New Orleans led into the substantial purchase of the Louisiana Territory. This was a purchase that will make Thomas Jefferson a man to be remembered. Although, he wasn’t the only man who impacted the United States during this time period. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark are the two men that are greatly known for their expedition across the Louisiana Territory. These two subjects, the Louisiana Purchase and the Lewis and Clark Expedition, altered our nation immeasurably.
Unfortunately, the President’s consistency with Republican principles in matters of political power was not nearly as strong as his resolve to reduce the national debt. Under Jefferson and Madison, the federal government assumed political powers that the Constitution did not allot for. While prior to his presidency, Jefferson, then a strict constructionist had argued that the government should not assume any power unless specifically provided for in the Constitution, the Louisiana Purchase where America purchased a vast tract of land for $15 million, compromised these lofty ideals. In terms of the military, Thomas Jefferson had come to power vowing to reduce military size and power. Contrary to those principles, the Barbary War, where for nearly three years the American military exercised a naval blockade of the North African coast wasted millions of dollars of the people’s money and unconstitutionally violated states rights and strict constructionist principles, in their place asserting an alien un-Republican nationalism.
While Hamilton and Jefferson both tried to give the new nation what they thought was best, it was inevitable that their views would clash. Due to sharp differences in their political and economical thoughts, Hamilton and Jefferson more often then not found themselves fighting over issues they should have been in agreement with. Hamilton’s Federalism and Jefferson’s anti-Federalism all served to create different movement that would affect the nation both economically and politically as the years after the Revolution played out.