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Day 56: Manifest Destiny and Its Legacy. Baltimore Polytechnic Institute November 22, 2010 A.P. U.S. History Mr. Green. Rise of a Mass Democracy. Objectives: explain the spirit and meaning of the Manifest Destiny that inspired American expansionism in the 1840s.

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day 56 manifest destiny and its legacy

Day 56: Manifest Destiny and Its Legacy

Baltimore Polytechnic Institute

November 22, 2010

A.P. U.S. History

Mr. Green

rise of a mass democracy
Rise of a Mass Democracy


explain the spirit and meaning of the Manifest Destiny that inspired American expansionism in the 1840s.

Outline the major conflicts between Britain and the United States over debts, Maine, Canada, Texas, Oregon, and growing British hostility to slavery.

Explain why the U.S. government increasingly saw the independent Texas Republic as a threat and sought to pursue annexation

AP Focus

A member of the Democratic Party, John Tyler, becomes the Whig’s vice-presidential candidate in 1840. When President William Henry Harrison dies just one month into his term, Tyler, much to the distress of Whig party loyalists, such as Henry Clay, is elevated to the presidency.

Manifest Destiny, the belief that the United States is divinely inspired to spread across the continent, becomes the rationale for widespread territorial expansion. Critics repudiate it as nothing short of unbridled imperialism.

chapter focus
Chapter Focus

Chapter Themes

American expansionism gained momentum in the 1840s, leading first to the acquisition of Texas and Oregon, and then to the Mexican War, which added vast southwestern territories to the United States and ignited the slavery question

American international prestige grows as the United States expands. Successful military campaigns against Mexico along with well-negotiated treaties with Britain force Europe to respect America more, while Latin America begins to be wary of the Colossus of the North.


Mexican War Chart

Election Charts 1844 & 1848

Decades Chart 1840’s

polk the purposeful
Polk the Purposeful

James K. Polk-The 4 point program

1. Lower tariffs-Walker Tariff

2. Restore the independent treasury

3. Acquisition of California

4. Settlement of the Oregon dispute

Did not follow the 54 forty or fight

“Great Britain is powerful and Mexico is weak” Senator Benton, MO

misunderstandings with mexico
Misunderstandings with Mexico

California in 1845

13,000 Spanish Mexicans

75,000 Native Americans

<1,000 foreigners (Americans)

Polk wanted to buy California from Mexico

Once the U.S. acquired Texas, Mexico ended diplomatic relations

Dispute over the southern boundary, the Rio Grande or Nueces River

Polk sent John Slidell to Mexico to offer 25 million for California, but was not received

Rumor was Britain was about to acquire California

american blood on american soil
American Blood on American (?) Soil

Polk dispatched General Zachary Taylor to march from the Nueces River to the Rio Grande-provocatively near Mexican forces

No clash started by May 9, 1846 and he wanted to declare war on 2 grounds:

1. unpaid claims

2. Slidell’s rejection

April 25, 1846-Mexico kills/wounds 16 Americans

Congressman Lincoln wanted to know the spot on American soil where American blood had been shed.

cont d

Did Polk provoke war?

California important

Keep away from Britain

Grievances against Mexico

Teach Mexico a lesson

Mexico wanted to humiliate the bullies to the North

mastering of mexico
Mastering of Mexico

Exiled Santa Anna tricked the U.S. into allowing him to slip into Mexico.

Southwest and California operations a complete success

General Stephen W. Kearny-Santa Fe Trail

Captain John C. Fremont-overthrew Mexican rule in California with help from local Americans-California Bear Flag Republic

Buena Vista turning point for Taylor the U.S. Feb. 22-23, 1847

General Winfield Scott battled to Mexico City by September 1847

fighting mexico for peace
Fighting Mexico for Peace

Nicholas P. Trist-Chief clerk at the State Department negotiated the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

Confirmed American title to Texas and yielded the area westward to Oregon

U.S. paid 15 million for the land

Claims of its citizens against Mexico ($3,250,00)

Why did the U.S. offer to pay an indemnity to Mexico, especially after it had been forced on them?

profit and loss in mexico
Profit and Loss in Mexico

13,000 American lives, most to disease

U.S. size increased by a third

Trained Civil War military leaders:

1. Captain Robert E. Lee

2. Lieutenant Ulysses S. Grant

Justified the academies at West Point and Annapolis


Wilmot Proviso-amendment to ban slavery in any land acquired from Mexico

Never became Federal law, but endorsed by all but 1 of the free states

  • Begin reading Chapter 18
  • 5 Question reading check at the beginning of class on Tuesday
  • Work on Charts.