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1832 1848


Peoples in Motion




frederick douglass narrative of the life of frederick douglass

“I have often, in the deep stillness of a summer’s Sabbath, stood all alone along the lofty banks of that noble bay, and traced, with saddened heart and tearful eye, the countless number of sails moving off to the might ocean.”

Frederick Douglass,

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass



1832 Treaty of Payne’s Landing

1834 Philadelphia race riots

National Trades Union formed

1836 The Alamo

1837 Sam Houston, President of the new nation, Texas

1838 Trail on Which We Cried

1839 Married Women’s Property Law in Mississippi

1841 Amistad case before the Supreme Court

1844 The first telegraph lines

1845 Texas statehood

War with Mexico



1847 Brigham Young leads Mormons to Salt Lake City

Mexico surrenders and the Treaty of Guadalupe

1848 The Oneida Community established (Communiarians)

1843 The Oregon Trail and the Great Migration

1846 Canadian-U.S. boundary in northwest established

peoples in motion overview
  • Mass Migrations
  • A Multitude of Voices in the National Political Arena
  • Reform Impulses
  • The United States Extends Its Reach
mass migrations
  • Newcomers from Western Europe
  • The Slave Trade
  • Trails of Tears
  • Migrants in the West
  • Government-Sponsored Exploration
  • The Oregon Trail
  • New Places, New Identities
  • Changes in the Southern Plains
newcomers from western europe irish
Newcomers from Western Europe: Irish
  • 1820s: 50,000 Irish arrived in America
  • 1830s: 200,000 Irish arrived in America
  • 1840s-1850s: 1.7 million Irish emigrated to U.S.
    • The potato famine and English imperialism in Ireland drove emigration
    • Irish settled mainly in eastern states
    • Irish Catholics faced with discrimination from Protestant employers
    • Competition with African Americans for low paying jobs
    • Violence: 1834: Charleston, MA-Ursuline convent; 1837: Boston City Guards attacked Irish Montgomery Guards
    • By 1850: some success in the U.S. Catholic church and in the Democratic Party
newcomers from western europe germans
Newcomers from Western Europe: Germans
  • 1831-1850: Over 1/2 a million Germans arrived in America
    • Rebellion in Prussia in 1848 fueled German immigration
      • Also revolutions against the Austrian Empire sent Italians, Czechs, and Hungarians to the U.S.
    • Germans settled mainly in the Midwest
    • Farmers, merchants
the slave trade
The Slave Trade
  • Slave trade between the Upper South and the Lower South
    • 1800-1860: price of a slave increases; 670,000 people sold, 1 out of every 10 Upper South slave children sold to Lower South
    • Some reasons for sale: workers considered poor or “uppity”; ready cash; merchants profit from sale
    • Mexico abolished slavery in 1829; some Texas slaves freed
    • Voluntary migrations: Slaves ran to northern cities; many found supportive black communities; but found competition with white menial workers (Irish)
trails of tears
Trails of Tears
  • 1832: Treaty of Payne’s Landing: Seminoles out of Florida and to Indian Territory
    • Osceola and the Second Seminole War
  • Choctaws, Chickasaws, Creeks
    • Eneah Emothla and his resistance movement
  • Cherokee Nation
    • Treaty Party versus John Ross
    • 1838: Trail on Which We Cried
      • Concentration camps, followed by treacherous journey of malnutrition, disease, family separation, theft by white agents
      • 4,000 die
the oregon trail
The Oregon Trail
  • 1834: Protestant missionaries settle near modern day Walla-Walla, but meet hostile resistance from Indians
  • The Great Migration of 1843
  • The Oregon Trail: 2,000 miles long, six-month journey through hazardous environments
  • Indian resentment of perceived land grab
  • Measles epidemic
new places new identities
New Places, New Identities
  • In the Midwest and the land between U.S. and Spanish territories:
    • Outside of the South, black became white (for example, the Gilliam’s experience, see textbook p. 405)
    • Tejanos in Texas: Spanish-speaking with North American culture
    • Catholics intermingled with Protestants
    • Fur traders easily crossed between Spanish, French, Native American communities
    • Métis: children from white men and Indian women
a multitude of voices in the national political arena
  • Whigs, Workers, and the Panic of 1837
  • Suppression of Antislavery Sentiment
  • Nativists as a Political Force
whigs workers and the panic of 1837
Whigs, Workers, and the Panic of 1837
  • Van Buren defeats 3 Whig candidates with electoral college votes in 1836
  • Emerging trade unions and journeymen
    • 1834: National Trades Union formed
  • Depression brought on by speculation, crop failures and British loans recalled
suppression of antislavery sentiment
Suppression of Antislavery Sentiment
  • 1830-1840s: A rise in abolitionist feelings
    • Garrison, The Liberator
    • American Anti-Slavery Society
    • Women empathized with the black struggle
  • Whites fear freed blacks taking jobs
    • 1834: New Haven, CT school for young women of color attacked
    • 1837: Alton, Illinois abolitionist Rev. Lovejoy, publisher of Alton Observor murdered
    • 1841: Amistad case. John Q. Adams won the Supreme Court case for the Africans and abolitionists
nativists as a political force
Nativists as a Political Force
  • Nativists: oppose immigration and immigrants
    • Fueled by fear: of job loss to immigrants willing to work for lower wages, of Catholicism, of alcohol, of the “unknown” immigrant
    • Nativist Samuel F.B. Morse and the first telegraph line (1844), Imminent Dangers to the Free Institutions of the United States
    • 1844: The American Republican Party
    • 1849: The Order of the Star-Spangled Banner (the Know-Nothing Party)
    • The riots of May 1844 in Philadelphia between Catholics and Protestants
reform impulses
  • Public Education
  • Alternative Visions of Social Life
  • Networks of Reformers
public education
Public Education
  • Horace Mann, first secretary of board of education in Massachusetts, “Education…beyond all other devices of human origin, is the great equalizer of the conditions of men…”
  • Reform movement of Finney’s “perfectability,” “making angels out of men” prompts schooling to know only educate, but to promote hard work, punctuality, and sobriety.
  • Mann’s principle not wholly realized
    • Slaves forbidden education; free blacks in need of the child’s labor to survive
    • Poor whites do not benefit as the wealthy do
alternative visions of family life
Alternative Visions of Family Life
  • Communitarians
    • 1825: Robert Owen, New Harmony in Indiana (condemnation of private property, organized religion, and marriage)
    • 1848: John Humphrey Noyes, Oneida Community (complex marriages)
  • Women’s rights and temperance
  • Women’s rights and abolition
      • 1839: Married Women’s Property Law in Mississippi
      • Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  • Transcendentalism: (the primacy of the spirit and the essential harmony between people and the natural world)
      • Margaret Fuller
      • Emerson and Thoreau
networks of reformers
Networks of Reformers
  • Dorothea Dix
    • Crusade for mentally ill
    • Supported by other prominent reformers
    • Feminization of nursing profession
  • Abolitionism and Women’s Rights
  • Temperance and Women’s Rights
  • Margaret Fuller
    • Transcendentalisms
the united states extends its reach
  • The Lone Star Republic
  • The Election of 1844
  • War with Mexico
the lone star republic
The Lone Star Republic
  • 1835: 1 out of every 8 in Texas was a Tejano; the rest were U.S. born
  • 1836: Texians armed (pre-Texas Rangers) and ready for independence
  • February 1836: The Alamo. Santa Anna and Mexican troops killed 187 Alamo defenders including Crockett
  • April 1936: Santa Anna defeated at San Jacinto River. A new nation declared.
  • 1837: Sam Houston first president of the Republic of Texas.
  • Texas constitution legalized slavery and prohibited free blacks.
the election of 1844
The Election of 1844
  • The Annexation of Texas and Oregon the big issue (54˚40’ or Fight); slavery ignored
    • Democrats: Polk is pro-annexation
    • Whigs: Clay is anti-annexation, but later changes policy
    • Liberty: Birney (a split among Abolistionists occurs: change through moral suasion or through politics)
  • 1846: Polk compromises with Britain and accepts the 49th parallel as the U.S.-Canadian border
war with mexico
War with Mexico
  • December 1845: Texas statehood confirmed by Congress
  • The Polk-Slidell California/Texas deal fell through with Mexico
  • January 1846: General Zachary Taylor provoked armed conflict by crossing the disputed border between Mexico and Texas
  • Dissent from transcendentalists (a land grab), nativists (more immigration), abolitionists (Wilmot Proviso)
war with mexico29
War with Mexico
  • Three-pronged
    • Northern Mexico: Gen. Taylor
    • New Mexico and California: Gen. Kearny
    • Vera Cruz, Gulf of Mexico coastline: General-in-Chief Scott
  • The San Paticio soldiers
    • Irish soldiers deserted U.S. Army and sided with Mexico citing atrocities of U.S. on Mexican civilians, and the desire to side with Catholics against the Protestant U.S.
  • September 1847: Mexico City surrendered and the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo gave Texas to the U.S. and their northern half in exchange for $18,250,000