Louisiana Purchase: Primary Documents in American History

America is a constantly evolving place. It may be hard to believe how brutal/barbaric/ and unfair the past was unless you were there. Thankfully, changes have come from these unfair conditions and paved the way for innovation and growth. The Stamp Act of 1765 was the last straw for the Colonies. This act set in place by British Parliament is seen as the beginning of the end for the relationship between England and the Colonies. The act set a tax on printed items, such as documents, newspapers, and even playing cards.

This act was supposed to be a money maker for England, but it backfired and led to the war they would lose. This act spurred the colonies to make their own choices and resist. After the Colonies won against their parents, they made sure they were independent, and made a pivotal moment in history.

The making of The Declaration of Independence and it’s signing are equally important events. This Declaration was setting the rules for the new country.

They wanted to learn from other countries mistakes and become better from them. They knew firsthand what it was like to be pushed around and bullied, and so they made a defensive and proactive document to prevent these problems from plaguing them again. Expansion of territory is necessary for growth to remain sanitary. Expansion is exciting, brings new adventure an unknowns, and more business and jobs. With an upcoming war with England in his sights, Napoleon decided it would be too expensive to maintain the Western land France had claimed and was willing to sell it.

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The Louisiana Purchase in 1803 doubled the size of the United states. The U.S. payed $15 million dollars for 828,000 square miles of land, about 4 cents per acre. 15 states are made partly, if not completely, by the land from this purchase. This land deal is considered one of the most important achievements of Thomas Jefferson’s presidency.

Jefferson soon commissioned the Lewis and Clark expedition, led by Merriweather Lewis, and William Clark to explore the new territory. On April 30, 1812, exactly 9 years after the Louisiana Purchase, is was agreed the first state to be carved into the territory would be Louisiana. The new state was admitted into the Union as the 18th U.S. state. White resentment of the Cherokee had been building nut reached the breaking point following the discovery of gold in northern Georgia. Migration from the original Cherokee Nation began in the early 1800’s. Some Cherokees, wary of white encroachment, had already moved West and settled in other areas. President Andrew Jackson’s life was saved thanks to the aid of 500 Cherokee allies at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in 1814. It was Jackson who authorized the Indian Removal Act of 1830, following the recommendation of President James Monroe in his final address to Congress in 1825. Jackson, as president, sanctioned an attitude that persisted for years among white immigrants.

An estimated 4,000 Native American’s died from hunger, exposure and disease. The journey became a cultural memory as the ‘trail where they cried’ for the Cherokees and other removed tribes, more commonly known to the public as, “The Trail of Tears”. Before the American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln and other leaders of the anti-slavery Republican Party sought not to abolish slavery, but merely to stop its extension into new territories and states in the American West. In November 1860, Lincoln’s election as president signaled the secession of seven Southern states and the formation of the Confederate States of America. In 1862, Congress annulled the fugitive slave laws, prohibited slavery in the U.S. territories, and authorized Lincoln to employ freed slaves in the army. With 11 Southern states seceded from the Union, there were few pro-slavery congressmen to stand in the way of such an action.

On January 1, 1863–President Lincoln formally issued the Emancipation Proclamation, calling on the Union army to liberate all slaves in states still in rebellion. These three million slaves were declared to be “then, thenceforward, and forever free.” On December 18, the 13th Amendment was officially adopted into the Constitution–246 years after the first shipload of captive Africans landed at Jamestown, Virginia, and were bought as slaves.

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Louisiana Purchase: Primary Documents in American History. (2021, Dec 16). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/louisiana-purchase-primary-documents-in-american-history/

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