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Ch. 15: Manifest Destiny and the Growing Nation
Ch. 15 Objectives Students will Explain how the United States made five key territorial acquisitions from 1803 to 1853 (in other words, how we gained land to become a bigger country). Explain the concept of Manifest Destiny and how it was used to justify U.S. expansion during this time period. Debate what the U.S. should have done in each case of territorial acquisition, using historical facts and personal values.
Manifest Destiny was the belief by many Americans that it was America’s destiny to move westward, expanding its borders from the Atlantic Ocean in the East to the Pacific Ocean in the West. Belief in manifest destiny persuaded the American people and American leaders to support numerous efforts to acquire more territory, making America a much larger country. Over the course of 50 years (from ), America tripled in size and achieved the manifest destiny goal of stretching from coast to coast.
The Mississippi River is the longest river in North America. It is an important source of transportation for both people and goods. Farmers living in the states you see to the left could send their crops down the river and into the Atlantic Ocean, where they could be shipped around the world. Mississippi River New Orleans
In 1803, the port city of New Orleans belonged to France. However, America wanted New Orleans for itself so that American farmers could ship their crops down the Mississippi River and out into the Atlantic Ocean. From there, those crops could go to Eastern cities or Europe. The city was seen as vital to American trade. New Orleans
Complete the top half of pg. 3 by circling your choice and explaining your answer. A.Offer to buy the city of New Orleans from France so that American farmers can export their goods from that port. B.Threaten to go to war if France does not hand over New Orleans to the United States. C.Offer to buy all of the Louisiana Territory, including New Orleans, so that French are no longer a threat to the United States. What action should the United States take?
President Thomas Jefferson decides to send James Monroe to France to offer France $7.5 million for New Orleans. France’s leader, Napoleon Bonaparte, offers instead to sell the entire Louisiana Territory to the U.S. At the time, France was on the brink of war with Britain and it feared that it might lose the territory anyway during the war, so it made sense to sell it.
On April 30, 1803, Monroe signed a treaty giving Louisiana to the U.S. in exchange for $15 million dollars (That’s about 2 to 3 cents an acre!). The French foreign minister told Monroe, “You have made a noble bargain for yourselves, and I suppose you will make the most of it.” “A Noble Bargain”
While many Americans viewed it as the greatest land deal in history, some disapproved. Politicians in the East thought they might lose power as new states were carved out of the Louisiana Territory– states that might outnumber those in the East. Others complained that America had plenty of land as it was and too little money to be spending it on buying more. Some criticized that Jefferson had no Constitutional right to make such a deal, but later that year the Senate would ratify the treaty and double the size of the U.S. The Purchase Debate
Complete the bottom half of pg. 3
President Thomas Jefferson bought the Louisiana Territory from France for $15 million.
Spain had colonized Florida in the late 1500s. In 1804, Jefferson sent two diplomats to Spain to buy Florida, but Spain refused to sell. Many white Americans in the Southeast wanted Florida because many escaped slaves ran away there and the Seminole Indians were carrying out raids in Georgia. Florida
In 1818, President Monroe sent General Andrew Jackson to Georgia to end the Seminole raids. Jackson was told that he could not chase the Seminoles into Florida, but he did anyway. Jackson marched 1,700 troops into Florida and over the next few weeks had captured nearly every military post in the colony and had removed the Spanish governor and replaced him with one of his own officers. Andrew Jackson Invades Florida
Complete the top half of pg. 4 by circling your choice and explaining your answer. A.Use military force to take Florida from Spain since Andrew Jackson’s invasion proves that Spain’s army is weak. B.Apologize to Spain for Jackson’s invasion. Send troops to patrol the border between Florida and the United States to prevent raids by Indians and runaway slaves. C.Offer to buy Florida in order to avoid war with Spain. What action should the United States take?
Monroe asked his cabinet for advice; all but one of its members suggested removing Jackson and apologizing to Spain for his actions. The one member of his staff who disagreed was John Quincy Adams. He advised sending Spain a blunt message – either govern Florida properly or get out. Fearing war, Spain got out. In 1819, the Spanish government agreed to give Florida to the U.S. in exchange for the U.S. paying off $5 million in settlers’ claims against Spain and to honor Spain’s longtime claim to Texas. Not all Americans were happy about leaving Spain in charge of Texas. “Govern or Get Out”
Complete the bottom half of pg. 4
In 1821, Spanish officials granted Moses Austin a huge tract of land in Texas. After his death, his son Stephen settled in it soon after Mexico had gained its independence from Spain. By 1827, there were 297 families settled on Austin’s land. Texas Stephen Austin ( ) “Father of Texas”
Austin’s successful colony started a rush of American settlers to Texas. By 1830, there were about 25,000 Americans in Texas compared to 4,000 Tejanos (Texans of Mexican descent). Tensions rose between the two groups. Ultimately, the Mexican government responded by closing Texas to further American immigration. The government sent troops to Texas to assert its authority and to enforce the immigration laws. Rising Tensions
While some Texans called for revolution, others like Stephen Austin asked the Mexican government to reopen Texas to immigration and to make it a separate Mexican state. But when Austin presented the Texans’ demands to General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, he was tossed into jail for promoting rebellion. Soon after Austin was released, Texas rose up in revolt. Santa Anna marched north to crush the rebels with his army of approximately 6,000 troops. The Texans Rebel
The town of San Antonio, Texas was defended by about 180 Texan volunteers when a large part of Santa Anna’s army arrived. They had taken over an old mission known as the Alamo. Outnumbered by at least ten to one, the Texans held off the Mexicans for 12 days. Eventually, the Americans were defeated. Santa Anna ordered that those who had survived the battle be executed, a decision that would fill Texans with rage. The Alamo
“Remember the Alamo” “Remember the Alamo” soon became a battle cry for the Texas revolutionary army. The Battle of the Alamo showed how determined the Texans were to gain their independence and it encouraged those still fighting to seek revenge.
Sam Houston, the commander of the Texas revolutionary army, hoped to lure Santa Anna deeper into Texas. This would make it harder for him to supply his army and keep it battle-ready. In April 1836, Santa Anna caught up with Houston near the San Jacinto River. Battle of San Jacinto
Texas Wins Its Independence
Houston staged a surprise attack and the Texans overran the Mexican camp. Santa Anna fled, but was captured the next day. In exchange for his freedom, he ordered all his remaining troops out of Texas, granting Texas its independence. Texas Wins Its Independence
Complete the top half of pg. 5 by circling your choice and explaining your answer. A.Let Texas remain an independent country. Try to establish good relations with Texas, and avoid angering Mexico. B.Annex Texas to the United States and risk war with Mexico. C.Make a treaty with Mexico agreeing to split Texas between the two countries. What action should the United States take?
Texas became known as the Lone Star Republic because of the single star on its flag. But most Texans were Americans who wanted to make Texas part of the U.S. In the U.S., southerners wanted to annex Texas (make it part of the U.S.) because it was a slave state. However, northerners who opposed slavery wanted to keep Texas out. Others feared annexation would lead to war with Mexico. In 1845, Texas was admitted as the 28 th state. To Annex Texas or Not?
Complete the bottom half of pg. 5
Oregon Country was a tree- covered wilderness stretching from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. The U.S. and Britain both claimed ownership but agreed for a time to a peaceful “joint occupation” of Oregon. Oregon Country
America’s claim to Oregon was based on the Lewis and Clark expedition, which President Jefferson had ordered following the Louisiana Purchase. Jefferson wanted them to explore the Louisiana Territory to see exactly what the U.S. had just purchased from France. Between 1804 and 1806, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark had led a small band of explorers to the Oregon coast. Discovering Oregon Lewis & Clark
The first American settlers to travel to Oregon were missionaries. While they were unable to convert many Oregon Indians to Christianity, their reports of Oregon’s fertile soil and abundant forests soon attracted more settlers. Early settlers described it as a “pioneer’s paradise” and in 1843 about 1,000 pioneers packed their belongings into covered wagons and headed for Oregon. A year later, the number of pioneers headed for Oregon doubled. Oregon Fever
Complete the top half of pg. 6 by circling your choice and explaining your answer. A.Annex all of Oregon to the United States and risk war with Britain. B.Offer to sell Oregon to Britain in order to increase the money in the United States Treasury. C.Make a treaty with Britain agreeing to divide Oregon between the two countries. What action should the United States take?
President James K. Polk was a strong believer in Manifest Destiny and he had played a key role in Texas becoming part of the U.S. He would also play a key role in determining the fate of Oregon Country. Polk struck a deal with Britain that divided Oregon roughly in half at the 49th parallel. All of Oregon or Half?
Complete the bottom half of pg. 6
After gaining Texas and Oregon, President Polk (to the right) was determined to have the huge areas of California and New Mexico as well– either through purchase or war. He sent a representative to Mexico to try and buy the territories, but Mexican officials refused even to see him. After Texas became part of the U.S., Polk sent General Zachary Taylor (to the left) to defend the Texas- Mexican border in case Mexico tried to take it back. War with Mexico
The annexation (taking in) of Texas by the U.S. upset Mexico, which believed it to be an act of war. In addition, Texas and Mexico had never agreed on a border. On April 25, 1846 Mexican soldiers fired on American troops who were patrolling the Rio Grande, killing or wounding sixteen Americans. Polk used the incident as an excuse to go to war. War Breaks Out in Texas
At the time, American President Polk stated that Mexico “has invaded our territory and shed American blood on American soil.” Mexican President Mariano Paredes (on the bottom left) saw it differently, declaring that a greedy people “have thrown themselves on our territory... The time has come to fight.” War Breaks Out in Texas
A few months after declaring war, General Stephen Kearny led his army into New Mexico and captured it without firing a shot. The Fall of New Mexico
Meanwhile, a group of Americans led by the explorer John C. Fremont launched a rebellion against Mexican rule in California. They arrested and jailed the Mexican commander of Northern California. Then they raised a crude flag showing a grizzly bear sketched in blackberry juice. They declared California the Bear Flag republic. The Fall of California
At this time, General Zachary Taylor had pushed into Mexico, capturing the Mexican city of Monterrey. General Santa Anna marched north to meet Taylor with an army of 20,000 Mexican troops. The two forces battled in February 1847 near a ranch called Buena Vista. The fighting was fierce but General Santa Anna was eventually forced to make a retreat. The United States Invades Mexico
A month later, American forces led by General Winfield Scott landed at Veracruz in southern Mexico. Over the next six months, Scott’s army would fight their way to Mexico City, the capital of Mexico. Scott’s army captured Mexico City in September The United States Invades Mexico
Complete the top half of pg. 7 by circling your choice and explaining your answer. A.Apologize for invading Mexico, offer to buy California and New Mexico, and accept the Nueces River as the border between Texas and Mexico. B.Demand that Mexico recognize the Rio Grande as the border of Texas and cede (give up) California and New Mexico to the United States. C.Annex all of Mexico to the United States because it is weak after losing the Mexican War. What action should the United States take?
In 1848, Mexico and the U.S. signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the war. In the treaty, Mexico agreed to give up Texas and a vast region known as the Mexican Cession (about half of the country). The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
This area included the present-day states of California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico, as well as parts of Colorado and Wyoming. In exchange, the U.S. agreed to pay Mexico $15 million and promised to protect the 80,000 to 100,000 Mexicans living in Texas and in the Mexican Cession. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
In 1853, the U.S. acquired more land from Mexico in the Gadsden Purchase. James Gadsden arranged for the U.S. to buy a strip of land just south of the Mexican Cession for $10 million so that railroad builders could build a railroad through it. While most Americans were pleased with the new boundaries of the nation, many had believed the U.S. to be too good a nation to bully or invade its weaker neighbors. The war with Mexico changed that and Americans now knew the dark side of Manifest Destiny. “From Sea to Shining Sea” Gadsden Purchase
Complete the bottom half of pg. 7
“From Sea to Shining Sea”
America achieves its Manifest Destiny This map illustrates the expansion of the United States (in blue) from colonial times (1750) to the present.
What does each shaded region represent? (See if you know all six).