Jeffersonian ascendancy theory and practice of government
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JEFFERSONIAN ASCENDANCY: THEORY AND PRACTICE OF GOVERNMENT. America: Past and Present Chapter 8. Defining Identity in a New Republic. An age of rapid population growth 7.2 million in 1810; two million more than 1800 20% black slaves Children under 16 the largest single group

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Defining Identity in a New Republic

  • An age of rapid population growth

    • 7.2 million in 1810; two million more than 1800

    • 20% black slaves

    • Children under 16 the largest single group

  • Strong regional identities

  • Early secession movements threaten national unity


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Westward the Course of Empire

  • Intense migration to West after 1790

  • New States

    • Kentucky--1792

    • Tennessee--1796

    • Ohio--1803

  • Western regional culture rootless, optimistic


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Native American Resistance

  • Western settlers compete for Indian land

  • Indians resist

    • Tecumseh leads Shawnees, defeated

    • Creeks defeated

  • Settlers reject Indian-White coexistence


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Commercial Life in the Cities

  • Economy based on agriculture and trade

  • American shipping prospers 1793-1805

  • Cities associated with international trade, otherwise marginal role in national life

  • Industrialization and mechanization just beginning to frighten skilled craftsmen


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Republicans in Power

  • Jefferson personifies Republicanism’s contradictions

  • Despises ceremonies and formality

  • Dedicated to intellectual pursuits

  • A politician to the core

  • Success depends on cooperation with Congress


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Jeffersonian Reforms

  • Priority to cutting federal debt, taxes

  • Federal expenses trimmed by cutting military

  • Reduction of the army removes threat to Republican government

  • Competent bureaucrats retained regardless of party

  • Federalists retire from public life

  • Ambitious Federalists become Republicans


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The Louisiana Purchase

  • 1801--France buys Louisiana from Spain

  • 1803--Jefferson sends a mission to France to buy New Orleans

  • Napoleon offers to sell all of Louisiana for $15 million


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The Lewis and Clark Expedition

  • Lewis and Clark Expedition commissioned prior to purchase of Louisiana

  • Report on Louisiana’s economic promise confirms Jefferson's desire to purchase

  • Constitution vague on Congressional authority to purchase

  • Purchase departs from Republican principle of strict separation


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Louisiana Government Bill

  • Louisiana inhabitants French & Spanish

  • Jefferson denies them self-rule

  • Louisiana governed from Washington

  • Another Jeffersonian departure from Republicanism


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Conflict With the Barbary States

  • North African states demand tribute from ships sailing in Mediterranean

  • Jefferson dispatches U.S. fleet to “negotiate through the mouth of a cannon”

  • U.S. cannot defeat the Barbary States

  • Action induces respect for U.S. rights


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Jefferson’s Critics

  • Dispute over federal court system

  • Conflicts between Republicans

  • Sectional dispute over the slave trade


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Attack on the Judges: Judiciary Act

  • Judiciary Act of 1801 creates new circuit courts filled with loyal Federalists

  • 1802--Jeffersonians repeal Judiciary Act of 1801 to abolish courts

  • Federalists charge violation of judges’ Constitutional right of tenure


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Attack on the Judges: Marbury v. Madison

  • Marbury v. Madison (1803) rules Judiciary Act of 1789 unconstitutional

  • Federalist Marbury denied his judgeship

  • Republicans claim victory

  • Chief Justice John Marshall ensures Federalist influence through judicial review


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Attack on the Judges: Impeachments

  • 1803--Federalist John Pickering impeached, removed for alcoholism, insanity

  • Republicans begin fearing the destruction of an independent judiciary

  • Jefferson exacerbates fears by seeking to impeach Federalist Samuel Chase

  • Republican Senate refuses to convict


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Politics of Desperation:“Tertium Quids”

  • "Tertium Quids" claim pure Republicanism

  • Attack Jefferson as sacrificing virtue for pragmatism


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Politics of Desperation:The Yazoo Controversy

  • Yazoo controversy

    • Fraudulent land case in Georgia

    • Jefferson attempts to settle by providing land to innocent parties

    • Quids complain settlement condones fraud

  • Fletcher v. Peck (1810)

    • Marshall court upholds Jefferson’s settlement

    • Court may nullify unconstitutional state laws


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Murder and Conspiracy: The Curious Career of Aaron Burr

  • Vice-President Aaron Burr breaks with Jefferson

  • 1804--Burr seeks Federalist support in 1804 New York governor’s race

  • Alexander Hamilton blocks Burr’s efforts

  • Burr kills Hamilton in a duel


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The Burr Conspiracy

  • Burr flees West after Hamilton duel

  • Schemes to invade Spanish territory

  • Burr arrested, tried for treason

  • John Marshall acquits on Constitutional grounds of insufficient evidence

  • Precedent makes it difficult for presidents to use charge of treason as a political tool


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The Slave Trade

  • Congress prohibits slave trade after 1808

  • Northern Republicans call for emancipation of any black smuggled into the U.S.

  • Southern Republicans win passage of law to hand such persons over to state authorities


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Embarrassments Overseas

  • 1803--England and France resume war

  • American ships subject to seizure

    • by England through "orders in Council"

    • by Napoleon through Berlin, Milan Decrees

  • Jefferson refuses war to preserve financial reform

  • Embargo--Jefferson’s alternative to war


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Embargo Divides the Nation

  • 1807--Congress prohibits U.S. ships from leaving port

  • Purpose: to win English, French respect for American rights

  • Embargo unpopular at home

    • Detailed government oversight of commerce

    • Army suppresses smuggling

    • New England economy damaged


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A New Administration Goes to War

  • 1808--James Madison elected President

  • 1809--Embargo repealed in favor of Non-Intercourse Act

    • U.S. will resume trade with England and France on promise to cease seizure of U.S. vessels


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Madison’s Embarrassment

  • Madison reopens English trade on unconfirmed promise of British minister

  • English reject agreement, seize U.S. ships that opened trade with England


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Macon’s Bill Number Two

  • Replaces Non-Intercourse Act

  • Trade with both England and France reestablished

  • First nation to respect American rights wins halt of U.S. trade with the other

  • Napoleon promises to observe U.S. rights but reneges when trade reopened


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Fumbling Toward Conflict

  • Tecumseh’s Western campaign seen as supported by British

  • Congressional War Hawks demand war on England to preserve American honor

  • June 1, 1812, Madison sends Congress a declaration of war

  • War aims vague


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The Strange War of 1812:Early Course

  • Americans unprepared for war

    • Congress refuses to raise wartime taxes

    • New England refuses to support war effort

    • United States Army small

    • State militias inadequate

  • 1813--U.S. wins control of Great Lakes in Battle of Put-In Bay


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Strange War of 1812:The War’s Conclusion

  • 1814--three-pronged English attack

    • Campaign from Canada to Hudson River Valley stopped at Lake Champlain

    • Campaign in the Chesapeake results in burning of Washington, siege of Baltimore

    • Campaign for New Orleans thwarted by Andrew Jackson, January, 1815

  • Treaty of Ghent signed December, 1814


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Hartford Convention: The Demise of the Federalists

  • Federalists convene December, 1814

  • Proposed Constitutional changes to lessen power of South and West

  • Treaty of Ghent, victory of New Orleans makes Convention appear disloyal

  • Federalist party never recovers


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Treaty of Ghent Ends the War

  • American victory at Plattsburg prompts English to end the war

  • Most problems left unaddressed

  • Senate unanimously ratifies Treaty of Ghent

  • Americans claim success in a "second war of independence"


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Republican Legacy

  • Founders begin to pass away in 1820s

  • Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both die July 4, 1826

  • James Madison dies in 1836

    • Despairs that Declaration’s principles not yet extended to African-Americans


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