Decades Paper on America Between 1730-1860 Essay

In the 1730’s the Great Awakening exploded, religion rose to power once again and people began to get disconnected from their scientific ways of thinking. Jonathan Edwards was the catalyst to the Great Awakening, Edwards preached that not only doing good deeds will lead one to salvation, but faith in God will too, and he reiterated that faith in God was always above just doing good deeds. There wasn’t just a religious revolution at this time, but a social revolution was stirring, with the Molasses Act brought into effect in 1732, the colonists would soon begin getting sick of the taxes imposed by British Parliament.

Also around this Time Benjamin Franklin published Poor Richards Almanac a series of Almanacs that sold 10,000 copies every year and brought great success to Benjamin Franklin. During this period there are also several slave revolts and in 1940, fifty slaves are hanged due to suspicion of revolt. 1745-1760 During this time, the British Parliament begins to pass laws that limit the colonies greatly, they begin to cause the stirrings of a war. In 1750 they pass the Iron Act, this begins to limit the growth of American industry while securing the English Iron industry.

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The French and Indian War soon erupted. The French had several Native allies that were joining them in the fight to stop the ever advancing frontiersmen that were getting closer and closer to the disputed Ohio River Valley territory. In May of 1754, George Washington led a group of American Colonists to battle at Fort Duquesne where he losses and retreats. Due to this loss Britain sends English General Edward Braddock he arrives with troops ready to battle. When Braddock sets out with roughly 2000 men and Lt. Washington they are defeated by 900 French and Indians, Braddock is mortally wounded and William Shirley takes over his spot. In 1756 the English declare an all out war against the French because of what is going on in the Colonies. Also around this time William Pitt establishes a policy of unlimited warfare, further escalating the war. The English face defeat after defeat, but in 1759 they manage to take Quebec and take control of Canada. 1761-1775 The French and Indian war still goes on until 1763 with the Treaty of Paris and under the treaty England gets all land west of the Mississippi River except for Louisiana.

In 1763 King George the third signed the Proclamation of 1763 which stated that the Colonists couldn’t advance further west than the Appalachian Mountain Range and even though the colonists didn’t plan on moving that far west they were mad because King George is no one to tell them what they can or can’t do; this proclamation only further raised tensions between the Colonists and the King. The year after the Proclamation the King also passed into action the Sugar Act to compensate for the money spent on the French and Indian war, the tax not only applied to sugar but also to textiles, coffee, and wine.

In 1765 the British pass the Stamp Act to compensate for the money spent on British Military organization in the colonies. Under the Stamp Act all printed materials will be taxed. Soon after the Stamp Act cam the Quartering act that made colonists offer their homes free of charge to British soldiers. The Stamp Act was soon repealed; it that same day the British passed the Declaratory Act giving England total power to legislate any laws that govern the Americans. In 1767 the British pass the Townshend Act which really angers the colonists and soon sets into motion an upcoming war.

In 1770 The Boston Massacre involves the killing of six colonists out of a huge mob who had been harassing the soldiers. Later in 1770 the Townshend Acts are repealed. In 1773 the Tea Act takes place and soon thereafter so does the Boston Tea Party where colonists dump thousands of pounds of tea off boats in broad daylight as a form of protest. In response to the tea party the British Parliament passes the Coercive or Intolerable Acts which were strongly hated by Americans.

In September the First Continental Congress meets and declares the opposition to the Townshend Acts and they discuss the creation of local militias. The Olive Branch Petition was issued in this time asking for peace between the Colonies and England. 1776-1782 During the first year of the Colonial separation, there were still many Loyalists, people who supported the crown of England and wanted reunification. Thomas Paine directly dealt with this issue with his fifty page pamphlet Common Sense which attacks people’s allegiance to the monarchy along with King George.

In this warring time, England’s previous conquests came back to haunt them, both Spain and France gave help to the colonists whether it be money or troops; France was an especially good help. By July fourth a Declaration drafted by Thomas Jefferson was presented as the Declaration of Independence which formally stated the Colonies as free and United States. Perhaps the most significant battle for the Americans was a loss; the Battle of Long Island resulted in total defeat for the Americans, but this let Washington know to evade large scale confrontations between his army and the British.

After continuous battle Washington finds himself constantly retreating, but his plan for a surprise raid after Christmas works and by crossing the Delaware River he surprised over 1500 Hessian mercenaries. This victory was not just significant because of the win, but because it raised the moral of Washington’s men and with reenlistment dates approaching he needed this to keep his army together. Soon after this victory comes another at Princeton where they drive the British back to New Brunswick. Washington sets camp for the winter in New Jersey.

The winter is brutal and it kills most of his men and those who didn’t die desert. General Burgoyne begins to come in from Canada in an attempt to meet up with another army and cut off New England from the rest of the States. His arrival is startling, yet he doesn’t manage to take hold of New England. The Battle at Saratoga is perhaps the biggest victory for the Americans because the States only lose 150 while the British lose 600. After the Battle at Saratoga Burgoyne’s army retreats and are sent back to England.

In 1777 the United States adapts the Articles of Confederation as the government of the newly formed country where congress is the major ruling body. Four years after and at the close of the war General Cornwallis finds himself at Yorktown, surrounded on sea by French and on land by General Washington, Cornwallis retreats and plans are made for the surrender of England. 1783-1799 In Paris September 3, 1783 the treaty of Paris is signed and it will be ratified January 14, 1784 bringing an end to the war between England and the United States.

After the war there seems to be bliss, but soon reality sets in with a sinking economy, high taxes, and other internal struggles. In 1786 Daniel Shays leads a rebellion because he had no money and his farm was foreclosed. The reason Shays had no money was because the money congress printed was not accepted by his state. Shays’s rebellion fails, but with it comes the realization of the weak central government that is upheld by the Articles of Confederation. The Second Continental Congress soon meets to review the Articles of Confederation.

There were a total of nine states present at the Congress and George Washington was elected president of the Congress. Instead of revising the Articles the delegates decide to do away with them altogether and create something new. This new system separates the power into the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial branches and through a system of checks and balances ensures power remains equal among the three. At the Constitutional Convention Roger Sherman proposes the Great Compromise where states will be represented equally in the Senate and by population in the House of Representatives.

There is soon a small separation between the U. S and it came in the form of the Federalists and Anti-Federalists. By July 1788 a formal announcement is made that the Constitution has received the necessary 9 states ratification to be ratified nationally. Around this time the French Revolution starts, but the U. S cannot come to the aid of its ally France because President Washington thinks the nation is still too young and unprepared for war. In 1796 John Adams becomes the second President of the U. S Jefferson becomes the Vice President. During John Adams reign as President the Alien and Sedition Acts are passed. 800-1815 The Alien and Sedition acts were considered to be unconstitutional and were soon abolished in the Election of 1800 where Thomas Jefferson did away with and pardoned all those who had been punished by the Alien and Sedition acts. In the same year the capital of the nation was moved from Philadelphia to Washington D. C. In January 18 of 1803 President Thomas Jefferson went against his own personal ideologies of the strict interpretation of the Constitution by buying land under the name of the United States, he was worried he would be impeached, but everyone was too ecstatic about moving westward to notice.

By May of the next year Jefferson had sent Meriwether Lewis and William Clark off on an expedition to chart his new territory. In the same year, Alexander Hamilton a figurehead of the Federalist Party was shot and killed by Vice President Aaron Burr. In November of 1804 Jefferson is re-elected President with George Clinton as his vice president. The Aaron Burr Conspiracy was an incident that involved Burr creating his own small army and was trying to secede from the nation. Around this time the impressments of American ships by the British is being noticed.

In 1808 Jefferson steps down and James Madison is elected President. Soon after the election of Madison, the War of 1812 begins. The battle of Tippecanoe was perhaps the first battle where Tecumseh’s brother led an attack against William Henry Harrison’s men. June, 18 182 is the date the Americans declare war against the British. A pivotal battle for the Americans was the Battle of York because with this battle they took over the Great lakes. Tecumseh is soon killed at the Battle of Thames which slowed the Native allies to the British.

In 1814 the British burn the White House and Madison makes an escape. Soon the Treaty of Ghent is signed and it ends the war, but an influential battle still happens after the signing of the treaty and it was the Battle of New Orleans. This battle lead by Andrew Jackson basically paved the way for his presidency; over 700 Brits are killed to only eight American fatalities. 1816-1830 In 1819 Alabama is admitted as a slave state and that makes the number of slave to free states equal and soon after the Missouri Compromise is proposed.

The Missouri Compromise involves the addition of Missouri as a Slave State and Maine as a Free State and it doesn’t allow the formation of slave states in the Louisiana Purchase above the 36°30′ line. In 1824 Andrew Jackson loses a very controversial election to John Q. Adams and it is believed there was a Corrupt Bargain where neither Jackson nor Adams had fifty percent of the total vote so before congress could vote for President Henry Clay told all of his supporters to vote for Adams and in turn Adams made Clay the Secretary of State.

One year after the election the Erie Canal is completed which is considered a major transportation achievement. In 1828 Andrew Jackson is elected President of the United States. 1831-1845 Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act which resulted in the death of thousand of Indians as they made the trek of thousands of miles by foot to a small reservation. In 1833 Jackson wrote to vice president Van Buren opposing the Nullification of South Carolina saying it defies Federal authority. The United States force bill is signed in 1833 which allows Jackson to use military force to enforce tariffs.

After Jacksons Presidency, he leaves the United States in a shaky state, the panic of 1837 happens due to the sinking economy and President Martin Van Buren must deal with it. It was believed that Martin Van Buren’s only term served was Jackson’s third term because of how he controlled Van Buren in the Background. In 1835 Texas declares its independence from Mexico after constant argument over American takeover in Texas. In 1844 James K. Polk is elected President and this year the first telegraph is sent by Samuel Morse from Washington to Baltimore. 1846-1860 In 1846 the Mexican-American war begins and ends quickly.

With the defeat of the Mexican army and its capital soon to collapse the Mexican government surrenders and the United States manages the terms of the treaty of Guadalupe making the border the Rio Grande and keeping almost everything west of the Mississippi in what was known as the Mexican Secession. In 1850 California is admitted as a Free State under President Filmore. Filmore dies in office three years later. In 1855 Free Soilers establish a government in Kansas that bans slavery and African-Americans. In 1859 Oregon is admitted as a state and the year after Abraham Lincoln is elected President.


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