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Chapter 13 The Contested West, 1815–1860

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1 Chapter 13 The Contested West, 1815–1860

2 Like Henry Clay Bruce, many emigrants in the 1840s traveled west by steamboat for part of their journey, making the rest of the trip on foot, horseback, wagon, canal boat, or—often—by some combination of means. Fig. 13-CO, p. 330

3 p. 332

4 I. West in American Imagination
Physically “West” = west of Appalachians Frontier lit (Boone, Crockett) form myths: West offer economic opportunities/prosperity freedom for hard-working whites Art in US government reports extends image as land of “milk and honey” Lit and art reflect fantasies of eastern whites more than reality of West

5 In one of his most famous portraits, George Catlin painted Wi-Jun-Jon, an Assiniboine Indian, both before and after he had mingled with white men. In the “before” stance, the Indian is a dignified, peace-pipe-bearing warrior; in the “after” portrait, the “corrupted” Indian has abandoned dignity for vanity and his peace pipe for a cigar. p. 335

6 II. Trans-Appalachian Expansion
Post-1815, many move to Old Northwest and Old Southwest (Map 13.2): war weaken Indians new modes of transport help (trip still difficult) many keep moving Some return east Many move/settle with friends and relatives “Ethnic checkerboard” Slavery key: supporters head to Old Southwest opponents (often racist) head to “Midwest”

7 Map 13.2: Settlement in the Old Southwest and Old Northwest, 1820 and 1840.
Removal of Indians and a growing transportation network opened up land to white and black settlers in the regions known as the Old Southwest and the Old Northwest, as the U.S. population grew from 9.6 million in 1820 to 17.1 million in 1840. Map 13-2, p. 337

8 II. Trans-Appalachian Expansion (cont.)
Midwest pass “black laws” (1850s): exclude all African Americans (slave and free) Midwest grow faster than rest of West: cause fears for southerners (Congress) US government force many Indians west of MS River Black Hawk War (1832): crush resistance by Sauks and Fox tribes

9 In 1834, Karl Bodmer painted a farm on the Illinois prairie, depicting the more permanent, if still modest, structures that farmers built after the initial urgency to clear fields for cultivation had subsided. p. 338

10 III. Selling the West; Clearing the Land
Land speculators, etc. “sell” West Settlement follow new transport links to national and international markets Midwest = site of commercial farming Labor-saving devices (reapers, steel plows) Families farm Single men work lumber/mines Frontier cities (Chicago) nurture settlement: vital link between frontier farms and northeast cities

11 In his advertisements, Cyrus McCormick portrayed his reapers as making the West into a place of prosperity and leisure. p. 339

12 Artist Alfred Jacob Miller portrayed a marriage à la façon du pays (in the custom of the country) in which an Indian woman is given in marriage by her father to a métis man at a Rocky Mountain rendezvous in 1837. p. 340

13 IV. The Fur Trade Usually, first whites to go west
Interact with Indians (trade, marriage) Fur trade = an international business J.J. Astor = richest American, 1830s “Rendezvous” = annual meetings of many different people involved 1840s: trade decline (over-hunting, fashion) Trade: increase white knowledge of trails (Map 13.3) introduce diseases that weaken Indians

14 V. Federal Government and Expansion West
Key role in exploring/surveying/securing West for white settlement Many US government-sponsored explorations to collect info on natural resources and Indians Relocate Indians to “Great American Desert” to reserve better areas for whites Create (1838): Army Corps of Topographical Engineers earlier use of military in transport projects

15 V. Federal Government and Expansion West (cont.)
1850s: 90% of US military in West Big help to white settlers Office of Indian Affairs (1824): work with military in removal later oversee reservations US government help settlement by: reducing land prices and acreage minimums eventually accepting preemption Most settlers use loans to buy land

16 Charles Koppel portrayed the Colorado Desert and Signal Mountain for the Pacific Railway Reports (1853). The desert appears vast and unlimited, and those who travel through it seem to be advancing into the unknown. p. 344

17 VI. The Southwestern Borderlands
Southwest of LA Purchase (Map 13.4): controlled by Spain, then Mexico (1821) Slavery: there for centuries focus = capturing women/children slaves assimilated via race mixing White slave-owners reject race mixing White Americans see Hispanics as inferior Hispanic majority take Pueblo land (NM)

18 VII. The Texas Frontier Few white Americans settle in NM
More interested in TX, post-1815 TX: warfare over resources displaced eastern Indians war with western Indians (Comanches) over land and game Tejanos = distinct group of TX Hispanics

19 VII. The Texas Frontier (cont.)
First Spain, then Mexico encourage settlement from USA (empresario) S. Austin paid land to bring in Americans: breaks pledge not to allow slavery Cheap land attract white Americans Mexico want settlers to assimilate: whites from US South resist soon outnumber Tejanos 1826 = first attempt at TX independence

20 VIII. The Lone Star Republic
1830s, Mexico tries to: assert control over TX ban entry of more slaves TX whites resist; break with Mexico (1836) New government: legalizes slavery bans free blacks uses Rangers to terrorize Indians/open new lands to whites and slavery Disease/over-hunting weaken Comanches Civilians suffer during US-Mexican War

21 Although the musician in Gentilz’s painting is playing the fiddle, other artistic depictions record the widespread use of the guitar, which helped give rise to the corridor, a folk ballad whose legacy is still apparent in today’s country and western music. p. 347

22 Theodore Gentilz arrived in Texas in the 1840s and soon began portraying the region’s culture with his paintbrush. Here, Tejano settlers perform the fandango, a Spanish dance. p. 347

23 The West, 1815–1860 Millions move west (Map 13.1)
Seek opportunities (land, gold) 1860: almost 50% of US population Large numbers forced to move (slaves, Indians) West = meeting place of different cultures governments promote movement/settlement TX cause North/South tension over slavery tension with Mexico

24 Map 13.1: Westward Expansion, 1800–1860.
Through exploration, purchase, war, and treaty, the United States became a continental nation, stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Map 13-1, p. 334

25 Migration to the Far West
Late 1830s, many migrate to CA and UT Areas controlled by Mexico Most seek farm land Missionaries (Catholic and Protestant) try to convert Indians 1847, Mormons seek sanctuary in UT: tensions develop with Indians and with non-Mormons fighting between Mormons and US Army ( )

26 Oregon and California Trails
: ¼ to ½ million make 7-month trip Children walk besides wagons Dangerous (Donner Party, ) At first, violence with Indians rare Indians help with food and info But disputes grow, esp. livestock grazing Mormon Cow Incident (1854): clash between Lakotas and US Army result = violence for next 20 years

27 This rare stereocard shows an emigrant train, including two women and possibly a child, dwarfed by the natural landscape in Strawberry Valley, Califonia, in the 1860s. p. 352

28 Gold Rush 1848 find greatly increase CA settlement
Many young men arrive (Map 13.5) Destroy land in search of gold; few find it Large numbers stimulate development: agrarian urban (San Francisco) commercial Free state (1850), allow Indian slaves Big drop in Indian population: 200,000 (1821) 30,000 (1860)

29 This 1855 Frank Marryat drawing of a San Francisco saloon dramatizes the international nature of the California gold rush. Like theater performers, the patrons of the saloon dress their parts as Yankees, Mexicans, Asians, and South Americans. p. 343

30 The Politics of Territorial Expansion
Both parties push expansion: Democrats want land Whigs seek commercial opportunities Hesitate to admit TX (1830s) because will: increase number of slave states upset Senate balance Manifest Destiny rationale (1840s): expansion inevitable divinely ordained Whites see Indians and Hispanics as: racially inferior incapable of self-improvement

31 The Politics of Territorial Expansion (cont.)
Many northerners settle in OR (1840s) Create conflict with England Settlers want entire OR Territory (54° 40') Tyler want both OR and TX, esp. TX Increase debate over slavery in west 1844 election: 2 well-organized parties close election high voter participation

32 The Politics of Territorial Expansion (cont.)
Polk (Democrat) win with strident expansionist platform on TX and OR Slave owner Polk helped when abolitionist Liberty Party draws votes from Whigs (NY) Tyler then uses congressional maneuver to admit TX (1845) Create conflict with Mexico

33 “Mr. Polk’s War” with Mexico (1846–1848)
Polk makes war unavoidable Claim TX border = Rio Grande Want Mexican land (CA) to Pacific To avoid two-front war, compromise with British on 49th parallel for OR (Map 14.1) Aggressive with Mexico: send troops into disputed area (Map 14.2) wait for incident Deceive Congress on nature of incident


35 Foreign War and Popular Imagination
1st US war on foreign territory Manifest Destiny = war’s theory and practice Many public celebrations and volunteers 1st war reported with immediacy USA: quickly capture NM and CA take Mexico City despite heavy resistance Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (1848): expand US border southwest CA, NM, and large TX

36 “Slave Power Conspiracy”
Polk extend US to Pacific War causes sectional discord Abolitionists claim oligarchic plot to extend slavery and suppress dissent Wilmot Proviso (1846): ban slavery from new lands upset South Southerners assert 5th Amendment protect slavery in all territories

37 “Slave Power Conspiracy”
South’s “state sovereignty” challenge earlier restrictions on slavery in territories Wilmot not an abolitionist A racist: want ban on slavery’s expansion to preserve new lands for free white men Reflect majority of northern whites: mix antislavery and racism not abolitionists, but fear of Slave Power will ally them with abolitionists

38 Like George Allen, many Texas settlers relied on slave labor to work their fields and maintain their households. p. 349

39 XI. Indian Treaties Office of Indian Affairs negotiates treaties to facilitate settler migration Offers aid in return for Indians: ending intertribal warfare not bothering settlers Treaties = source of tension as neither side fully lives up to terms Other sources of tension: buffalo decline (over-hunting) disease prairie fires

40 Established in 1834, Fort Laramie—pictured here three years later by Alfred Jacob Miller—served as a fur-trading site, where Indians and trappers of European or mixed heritage came together not only to exchange goods but also to socialize. In 1849, as interactions between Indians and overland migrants to Oregon grew increasingly tense, the U.S. Army took over the fort, now designed to protect overland emigrants. Located in eastern Wyoming, the fort stood at the beginning of the Oregon Trail. p. 353

41 The vibrant trade in buffalo hides prompted both Indians and whites to over hunt the American bison, leading to near extinction for the animal by the latter part of the nineteenth century. p. 354

42 This 1845 portrayal of Oregon City, the western terminus of the Oregon Trail, was provided by a British army officer sent to investigate the influence of large-scale American immigration into a territory jointly occupied by Great Britain and the United States. After the Oregon Treaty (1846) drew the boundary between British and American territory at the forty-ninth parallel, Oregon City became the capital of the Oregon Territory from 1848 to 1851. p. 357

43 Summary: Discuss Links to the World and Legacy
CA gold as global event? Global movement of news and people CA, 1850: 40% foreign born most non-European Latinos in USA as legacy of this era? In southwest, USA come to Latino settlers, not them coming to USA? Conversos in Spanish migrants to NM?

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