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JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY

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Title: JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY


1
JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY
  • Chapter 9

The American Nation, 12e Mark. C. Carnes John A.
Garraty
President's Levee, or all Creation going to the
White House, Washington, March 4, 1829. Library
of Congress. Rare Book and Special Collections
Division. Call number E165.P72. Reproduction
number LC-USZC4-970 (color film copy
transparency)
2
DEMOCRATIZING POLITICS
  • Jacksonian inauguration and the reign of the
    common man
  • Jefferson believed ordinary man could be
    educated to believe what was right
  • Jackson insisted ordinary man knew what was
    right by instinct
  • Servant replaced by help
  • Increasingly democratic elections
  • Most states removed property qualifications
  • By Jacksons time only Delaware and South
    Carolina had electors chosen by state
    legislature rather than by popular vote
  • Soon after 1828 presidential candidates were
    nominated by party conventions

3
DEMOCRATIZING POLITICS
  • Emphasis on idea that every citizen equally
    important and all should participate in
    government
  • Final disestablishment of churches
  • Beginnings of free-school movement, early
    interest in adult education and slow spread of
    secondary education
  • Increase in number of newspapers and the decline
    in their prices
  • Increase in voting
  • 1824 300,000 ballots cast
  • 1828 1.1 million
  • 1840 2.4 million

4
DEMOCRATIZING POLITICS
  • With increase in importance of voting came
    increase in competition among candidates
  • Running campaigns and getting vote out required
    money, people and organized effort
  • Parties became powerful institutions that
    instilled loyalty among adherents
  • 1828 election stimulated party formation
  • Created bureaucracies
  • Devoted party workers were rewarded with
    political offices
  • Candidates decided best way to attract voters was
    by flattery

5
1828 THE NEW PARTY SYSTEM IN EMBRYO
  • Party system developed as result of battle to
    succeed John Quincy Adams
  • 1828 election full of character assassination
  • Denigrating remarks about Jacksons wife and
    marriage
  • Accusations about Adams conduct in office

Mrs. Andrew Jackson / engd. by J.C. Buttre
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs
Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA
LC-USZ62-25773 (bw film copy neg.)
6
THE JACKSONIAN APPEAL
  • Jackson similar to Washington
  • Soldier first
  • Inveterate speculator in western lands
  • Owner of plantation and slaves
  • Man with few intellectual interests and only
    sketchily educated
  • More like a southern planter than a frontiersman
  • Drew support from every section and social class
  • Believed in equality of opportunity and
    distrusted entrenched status

7
THE SPOILS SYSTEM
  • Jackson decided to punish those who wronged him
    during campaign
  • Political office seen as reward for victory
  • Removed some for incompetence
  • Some because believed in concept of rotation
    which meant more citizens could participate in
    tasks of governing
  • Would prevent entrenched bureaucracy
  • Yet also inhibit governmental efficiency
  • Jacksonian democracy characterized by contempt
    for knowledge and belief that ordinary Americans
    can do anything they set their minds to
  • Jackson actually appointed people from social and
    intellectual elite
  • Did not rotate a lot of positions especially in
    War and Navy departments

8
PRESIDENT OF ALL THE PEOPLE
  • Jackson relied not on formal cabinet (where only
    secretary of state, Martin Van Buren, had any
    talent) but on informal Kitchen Cabinet
  • Vetoed over a dozen bills that he deemed
    inexpedient
  • Did not seek to expand federal authority at
    expense of states because favored a frugal
    constitutionally limited government
  • Poor administrator, given to penny-pinching and
    lacking in imagination

Andrew Jackson, President of the United States,
1830. Library of Congress. Prints and
Photographs Division. Reproduction number
LC-USZC4-4563 (color film copy transparency).
9
SECTIONAL TENSIONS REVIVED
  • Moderate course
  • Slight reduction in tariff
  • constitutional internal improvements
  • Once federal debt paid off, distribute rest among
    states
  • If did this could not reduce price of public land
    which upset westerners
  • Created proposal for South-West alliance based on
    cheap land and low tariff
  • Alliance cut down by Daniel Webster

10
JACKSON THE BANK I WILL KILL IT
  • Jackson was re-elected in 1832 over Henry Clay
  • One of main issues was Second Bank of U.S.
  • Bank was run by Nicholas Biddle who realized it
    could act as rudimentary central bank
  • State banks often issued more paper money than
    hard currency reserves
  • By collecting bank notes and submitting them for
    redemption, Biddle could compel local banks to
    maintain reserves of gold and silver

11
JACKSON THE BANK I WILL KILL IT
  • Biddles policies were good for Bank
  • Earned substantial profits
  • But state banks pressured to print money which
    caused farmers to overextend themselves
  • Led to decline in prices and agricultural
    depression
  • Reckless lending caused inflation and greatly
    exaggerated ups and downs of business cycle
  • Biddle had supporters but they were outnumbered
    by detractors who did not understand what he was
    doing

12
JACKSONS BANK VETO
  • After Jackson admitted his dislike and fear of
    Bank, Biddle gravitated to the opposition
    (National Republicans)
  • In 1832 Biddle asked for renewal of Bank charter
    due to expire in 1836
  • Congress passed but Jackson vetoed saying Bank
    was
  • Unconstitutional
  • Inexpedient
  • Stock owned by foreigners

13
JACKSONS BANK VETO
  • Jackson withdrew government funds from the Bank
    of the United States and deposited them in state
    banks
  • Had to replace two Secretaries of the Treasury
    before found Roger Taney who made transfer
  • By 1836 funds distributed to 90 institutions
  • In response to withdrawals, Biddle
  • Presented all state bank notes and checks for
    specie
  • Contracted own lending
  • Paper money became scarce and specie unattainable
  • In 1834, Biddle caved to pressure and returned to
    lending freely

14
JACKSON VERSUS CALHOUN
  • Jackson Our Federal Union It must be
    preserved
  • Calhoun The Union, next to our liberty, most
    dear
  • Strained relations
  • Peggy Eaton
  • Calhouns 1818 response to Jacksons invasion of
    Florida
  • Jacksons views
  • Did not believe that the area of national power
    was large or should be expanded
  • Interested in government economy, distribution of
    federal surpluses to the states, and interpreting
    powers of Congress narrowly
  • Favored internal improvements but preferred local
    projects be left to states

15
INDIAN REMOVALS
  • Jacksons Views
  • Indians were savage because roamed wild in
    trackless wilderness and therefore were incapable
    of self-government
  • Ignored reality of Cherokee life
  • Jackson insisted that Indians must be removed
    from path of white settlement but must be paid
    fairly for land and government must bear expense
    of relocating them
  • Saw relocation as protecting Indians from
    degradation and destruction

16
INDIAN REMOVALS
  • Between 1831 and 1833 some 15,000 Choctaw
    migrated from Mississippi to region west of
    Arkansas Territory
  • Resistance
  • Black Hawks Sac and Fox in Illinois
  • Osceolas Seminole in Florida
  • Accommodation Cherokee
  • Took up farming and cattle raising
  • Developed a written language
  • Drafted a constitution
  • 1828 Georgia declared all Cherokee laws void and
    claimed their land as part of Georgia

17
INDIAN REMOVALS
  • Cherokees sued in Supreme Court
  • Cherokee Nation v Georgia (1831)
  • Chief Justice John Marshall ruled that the
    Cherokee were not a foreign nation and thus could
    not sue in U.S. court
  • Worcester v. Georgia (1832)
  • Involved two missionaries to Cherokee who had not
    obtained license required by Georgia
  • Marshall ruled state could not control Cherokee
    or their territory
  • Supported this decision in follow up case when
    Cherokee convicted in Georgia court sued and
    Marshall overturned conviction since had occurred
    on Cherokee territory thereby making Georgias
    actions unconstitutional

18
INDIAN REMOVALS
  • Jackson supported Georgia
  • Trail of Tears (1838)
  • 15,000 Cherokees were forced to leave Georgia for
    Oklahoma
  • At least 4,000 died on the way
  • Jacksons actions regarding Georgia convinced
    many southern states righters that he would not
    oppose doctrine of nullification

19
THE NULLIFICATION CRISIS
  • 1832 Tariff failed to lower prices enough to
    satisfy southerners, especially South Carolina
  • Upcountry cotton planters suffering competition
    from more fertile Alabama
  • Planter aristocrats of rice-growing Tidewater
    were troubled by northern criticisms of slavery
  • Blacks outnumbered whites two to one in region
  • Many were African born
  • 1822 planned revolt of Denmark Vesey exposed
  • 1831 Nat Turner revolt terrified even more

20
THE NULLIFICATION CRISIS
  • Radical South Carolinians saw protective tariffs
    and anti-slavery agitation as tyranny of the
    majority to which nullification was the logical
    defense
  • Calhouns Exposition and Protest based on false
    assumptions
  • That the Constitution was subject to definitive
    interpretation
  • That one party could be permitted to interpret a
    compact unilaterally without destroying it
  • That a minority of the nation could reassume its
    sovereign independence but that a minority of the
    state could not
  • Jackson realized if state could nullify a law of
    Congress, the Union could not exist

21
THE NULLIFICATION CRISIS
  • October 1832 South Carolina state legislature
    provided for the election of a special convention
    which wound up containing a majority of
    nullifiers
  • November 24, 1832 convention passed an ordinance
    of nullification prohibiting collection of tariff
    duties after February 1, 1833 and authorized
    raising of army
  • Jackson threatened to use force while also
    pressuring Congress to further lower tariff and
    warning South Carolina of the consequences

22
THE NULLIFICATION CRISIS
  • Calhoun resigned as Vice President and replaced
    Senator Hayne
  • Sought solution aided by Henry Clay
  • Administration allies introduced new tariff bill
    and a Force Bill (granting president additional
    authority to execute revenue laws)
  • No other southern states joined South Carolina
  • March 1833 Calhoun and Clay got compromise tariff
    through Congress that lowered tariff over 10 year
    period
  • South Carolina repealed nullification law and
    nullified force law

23
BOOM AND BUST
  • 1833 and 1834 Taney insisted pet state banks
    maintain large reserves
  • Other state banks began to offer credit on easy
    terms because had increase in their reserves of
    gold and silver
  • Decline in Chinese demand for Mexican silver led
    to increased exports of metal to U.S.
  • Rise of American interest rates attracted English
    capital
  • Heavy English purchases of American cotton of
    high prices increased flow of specie to banks

24
BOOM AND BUST
  • Bank notes in circulation jumped from 82 million
    in January 1835 to 120 million in December 1836
  • New money flowed into land speculation where
    prices rose 15 in 6 months
  • By 1836 U.S. government had eliminated debt and
    had a 20 million surplus
  • Alarmed by speculation, Jackson issued Specie
    Circular in 1836
  • Purchasers must pay for public land in gold or
    silver

25
JACKSONIANISM ABROAD
  • Reciprocal trade agreements negotiated
  • One with Great Britain opened British West Indian
    ports to American ships
  • Pressed American claims dating from Napoleonic
    Wars
  • 1831 France agreed to pay 5 million
  • Initially the French Chamber of Deputies refused
    to pay and only after Jackson had severed
    relations and threatened war did Chamber finally
    give in

26
THE JACKSONIANS
  • Jacksonians of Democratic Party believed in
    certain underlying principles
  • Suspicion of special privilege and large business
    corporations
  • Freedom of economic opportunity, unfettered by
    private or governmental restrictions
  • Absolute political freedom, at least for white
    males
  • Conviction that any ordinary man is capable of
    performing the duties of most public offices
  • Supported public education

27
RISE OF THE WHIGS
  • Opposition to Jackson less cohesive though
    clearly anti-Jackson
  • Whigs
  • Bankers
  • Those who found pushiness and coarseness of
    Jacksonians offensive
  • Lawyers, ministers, doctors and other well
    educated people joined due to anti-intellectual
    and anti-scientific bias of administration
  • Problems
  • Too many generals, not enough troops
  • Could agree on little besides dislike of Jackson

28
MARTIN VAN BURENJACKSONIANISM WITHOUT JACKSON
  • Took office as Panic of 1837 hit
  • By 1838 the banks resumed specie payment
  • 1839 bumper crop caused a sharp decline in price
    of cotton
  • States that had overextended themselves in
    internal improvements were forced to default on
    debts
  • Discouraged foreign investments
  • Result was economic depression that lasted until
    1843

29
MARTIN VAN BURENJACKSONIANISM WITHOUT JACKSON
  • Van Buren ignored economy
  • Did pass Independent Treasury Act 1840
  • Called for the construction of government owned
    vaults where federal revenues could be stored
    until needed
  • All payments to the government were to be made in
    hard cash
  • Despite criticism system actually worked for a
    number of years

Martin Van Buren LC-USZ62-13008 (bw film copy
neg. of detail)LC-BH82401-5239 (bw film copy
neg.) Library of Congress Prints and Photographs
Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA
30
WEBSITES
  • Indian Affairs Laws and Treaties, Compiled and
    edited by Charles J. Kappler (1904)
  • http//digital.library.okstate.edu/kappler
  • Andrew Jackson and Indian Removal
  • http//www.iwchildren.org/genocide/murderer1.htm
  • The Second Bank of the United States, 1816-1836
  • http//odur.let.rut.nl/usa/E/usbank/bank04.htm
  • Daniel Webster
  • http//www.dartmouth.edu/dwebster
  • The American Whig Party, 1834-1856
  • http//odur.let.rug.nl/usa/E/uswhig/whigsxx.htm
  • National Museum of the American Indian
  • http//www.si.edu/nmai
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