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Chapter 13 Pg. 276-284. The Rise of a Mass Democracy. GONE TO TEXAS. Gone to Texas.
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Chapter 13Pg. 276-284 The Rise of a Mass Democracy
Gone to Texas • Americans continued to covet Texas , and in 1823, after Mexico had gained independence from Spain, Stephen Austin had made the agreement with the Mexican government to bring about 300 families into a huge tract of granted land to settle. • The stipulations were:(1) they must become Mexican citizens ,(2) they must become Catholic , and (3) no slavery allowed. These stipulations were largely ignored by the new settlers.
The Lone Star Rebellion • The Texans (among them, Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie) resented the “foreign” government, and they were led by Sam Houston in their movement for independence. • In 1830, Mexico freed its slaves and prohibited them in Texas, much to the anger of citizens. • In 1835, dictator Santa Anna started to raise an army to suppress the Texans; the next year, they declared their independence. • After armed conflict and slaughters at the Alamo and at Goliad, Texan war cries rallied citizens, volunteers, and soldiers – “Remember the Alamo!”
The Lone Star Rebellion (cont.) • The turning point came after Sam Houston’s army attacked the Mexicans, taking advantage of their siesta hour, wiping them out, and capturing Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto. • Though the Texans could now officially claim their independence, the treaty that Santa Anna was forced to sign was later negated by him on grounds that it was extorted under duress!
The Lone Star Rebellion (cont.) • Texas was supported in their war by the United States, but Jackson was hesitant to formally recognize Texas as an independent nation until he had secured Martin Van Buren as his successor, but after he succeeded, Jackson did indeed recognize Texas on his last day before he left office, in 1837. • Many Texans wanted to become part of the Union, but Presidents Jackson and Van Buren hesitated to extend recognition to and to annex the new Texas Republic because antislavery groups in the United States opposed annexation. • The end result was a 10 year long unsettled predicament in which Texans constantly feared the return of Santa Anna……
In 1840, William Henry Harrison (Ol’ Tippecanoe) was nominated by the Whigs due to his being issueless and enemyless, with John Tyler as his running mate. • Harrison had become popular as an Indian fighter, specifically from the battles of Tippecanoe (1811) and the Thames (1813) against Tecumseh’s forces. • A misguided Democratic editor inadvertently helped Harrison’s cause when he called the candidate a poor old farmer who drank hard cider, inadvertently making him look like, and suddenly appeal to, many poor Westerners.
With slogans of “Tippecanoe and Tyler too,” the Whigs advocated this “poor man’s president” idea and replied, to such questions of the bank, internal improvements, and the tariff, with answers of “log cabin,” “hard cider,” and “Harrison is a poor man.” • The popular election was close, but Harrison blew Van Buren away in the Electoral College. • Basically, the election was a protest against the hard times of the era more than anything. People simply wanted change (heard that one before?)
This political cartoon was created for the US Presidential election of 1840. The title reads “A Hard Road To Hoe! Or, the White House Turnpike, macadamized by the North Benders.” Please note in the cartoon the parallels to “hard road” & “hard cider” (which is the alcohol that was many times distributed by Whigs at their political party functions to those people that attended). The term “macadamized” means to construct or complete a road using a solid foundation. This cartoon is a crude satire on the obstacles facing Van Buren's reelection effort in 1840. Weighed down by a large bundle labeled "Sub Treasury," Van Buren follows the lead of Andrew Jackson toward the White House. His way is blocked by barrels of "Hard Cider" and log cabins, symbolizing the popular appeal of Harrison's candidacy. In the right distance the Capitol is visible, and in the left distance Van Buren's home at Kinderhook. A mischievous youth stands behind Van Buren thumbing his nose. It also features "OK" which was coined after Martin Van Buren -- "Old Kinderhook."
This woodcut is a parody (caricature or exaggeration) of Democratic efforts in 1840 to re-elect incumbent Martin Van Buren in the face of broad popular support for Whig candidate William Henry Harrison. Note in this cartoon that Martin Van Buren appears locked up in a “log cabin” and that Andrew Jackson attempts to pry him out with a “hickory stick.” Additionally, names of states appear on the log cabin and the fulcrum for Jackson’s hickory stick is a pile of “NG” which means “no go.” Recall, from the overview presented, that Van Buren lost his bid for reelection in 1840.
When the Federalists had dominated, mass democracy was not respected, but by the 1820s, it had become the order of the day. • Politicians now had to bend to appease and appeal to the masses, and the popular ones were the ones who claimed to be born in log cabins and had humble backgrounds. • Those who were aristocratic (too clean, too well-dressed, too grammatical, to highly intellectual) were scorned. • Western Indian fighters and/or militia commanders, like Andrew Jackson, Davy Crocket, and William Henry Harrison, were quite popular.
Jacksonian Democracy essentially stated that whatever governing there was to be done should be done directly by the people. • This time was called the New Democracy, and was based on universal white manhood suffrage. • In 1791, Vermont became the first state admitted to the union to allow all white males to vote in the elections. • While the old bigwigs who used to have power sneered at the “coonskin congressmen” and the “bipeds of the forest,” the new democrats argued that if they messed up, they messed up together and at least could no longer be victims of aristocratic domination.
The Democrats had so successfully absorbed the Federalist ideas before, that a true two party system had never emerged—until now. • The Democrats • Glorified the liberty of the individual. • Clung to states’ rights and federal restraint in social and economic affairs. • Mostly more humble, poorer folk. • Generally from the South and West. • The Whigs • Trumpeted the natural harmony of society and the value of community. • Berated leaders whose appeals and self-interest fostered conflict among individuals. • Favored a renewed national bank, protective tariffs, internal improvements, public schools, and moral reforms. • Mostly more aristocratic and wealthier. • Generally from the East. • Things in Common • Based on the people, with “catchall” phrases for popularity. • Both also commanded loyalties from all kinds of people. • Put simply, both the Democratic and the Whig party were mass-based political parties with little to truly differentiate from one another.