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´╗┐Title: Rise of the New West, 1819-1829
Author: Turner, Frederick Jackson
Language: English
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Vol. 1 European Background of American History, by Edward Potts
Cheyney, A.M., Prof. European Hist., Univ. of Pa.

Vol. 2 Basis of American History, by Livingston Farrand, LL.D.,
President Univ. of Colo.

Vol. 3 Spain in America, by the late Edward Gaylord Bourne, Ph.D.,
formerly Prof. Hist., Yale Univ.

Vol. 4 England in America, by Lyon Gardiner Tyler, LL.D., President
William and Mary College.

Vol. 5 Colonial Self-Government, by Charles McLean Andrews, Ph.D.,
Prof. Am. History, Yale University.


Vol. 6 Provincial America, by Evarts Boutell Greene, Ph.D., Prof.
Hist, and Dean of College, Univ. of Ill.

Vol. 7 France in America, by the late Reuben Gold Thwaites, LL.D.,
formerly Sec. Wisconsin State Hist. Soc.

Vol. 8 Preliminaries of the Revolution, by George Elliott Howard,
Ph.D., Prof. Polit. Science Univ. of Neb.

Vol. 9 The American Revolution, by Claude Halstead Van Tyne, Ph.D.,
Head Prof. Hist. Univ. of Michigan.

Vol. 10 The Confederation and the Constitution, by Andrew Cunningham
McLaughlin, A.M., Head Prof. Hist., Univ. of Chicago.


Vol. II The Federalist System, by John Spencer Bassett, Ph.D., Prof.
Am. Hist., Smith College.

Vol. 12 The Jeffersonian System, by Edward Channing, Ph.D., Prof.
Ancient and Modern Hist., Harvard Univ.

Vol. 13 Rise of American Nationality, by Kendric Charles Babcock,
Ph.D., Dean Col. Arts and Sciences, Univ. of Illinois.

Vol. 14 Rise of the New West, by Frederick Jackson Turner, Ph.D.,
Prof. Hist., Harvard University.

Vol. 15 Jacksonian Democracy, by William MacDonald, LL.D., Prof.
Government, Univ. of California.


Vol. 16 Slavery and Abolition, by Albert Bushnell Hart, LL.D., Prof.
Government, Harvard Univ.

Vol. 17 Westward Extension, by the late George Pierce Garrison,
Ph.D., formerly Prof. Hist., Univ. of Texas.

Vol. 18 Parties and Slavery, by Theodore Clarke Smith, Ph.D., Prof.
Am. Hist., Williams College.

Vol. l9 Causes of the Civil War, by Rear-Admiral French Ensor
Chadwick, U.S.N., retired former Pres. of Naval War College.

Vol. 20 The Appeal to Arms, by James Kendall Hosmer, LL.D., formerly
Librarian Minneapolis Pub. Lib.

Vol. 21 Outcome of the Civil War, by James Kendall Hosmer, LL.D.


Vol. 22 Reconstruction, Political and Economic, by William Archibald
Dunning, Ph.D., Prof. Hist, and Political Philosophy, Columbia Univ.

Vol. 23 National Development, by Edwin Erie Sparks, Ph.D., Pres. Pa.
State College.

Vol. 24 National Problems, by Davis R. Dewey, Ph.D., Professor of
Economics, Mass. Inst. of Technology.

Vol. 25 America as a World Power, by John H. Latane, Ph.D., Prof.
Am. Hist., John Hopkins University.

Vol. 26 National Ideals Historically Traced, by Albert Bushnell
Hart, LL.D., Prof. Government, Harvard University.

Vol. 27 National Progress--1907-1917, by Frederic Austin Ogg, Ph.D.,
Prof. Political Science, Univ. of Wisconsin.

Vol. 28 Index to the Series, by David Maydole Matteson, A.M.,
Harvard College Library.



Charles Francis Adams, LL.D., President
Samuel A. Green, M.D., Vice-President
James Ford Rhodes, LL.D., ad Vice-President
Edward Channing, Ph.D., Prof. History Harvard University
Worthington C. Ford, Chief of Division of MSS., Library of Congress,


Reuben G. Thwaites, LL.D., Secretary and Superintendent
Frederick J. Turner, Ph.D., Prof. of American History, Wisconsin
James D. Butler, LL.D., formerly Prof. Wisconsin University
William W. Wight, President
Henry E. Legler, Curator


William Gordon McCabe, Litt. D., President Lyon G. Tyler, LL.D.,
Pres. of William and Mary College
Judge David C. Richardson
J. A. C. Chandler, Professor Richmond College Edward Wilson James


Judge John Henninger Reagan, President
George P. Garrison, Ph.D., Prof. of History, University of Texas
Judge C. W. Raines Judge Zachary T. Fullmore









Copyright, 1906, by HARPER & BROTHERS.

Printed in the United States of America





EDITOR'S INTRODUCTION  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xiii

AUTHOR'S PREFACE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xviii

    I. NATIONALISM AND SECTIONALISM (1815-1830). . . . . . . 3

   II. NEW ENGLAND (1820-1830) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

  III. THE MIDDLE REGION (1820-1830) . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

   IV. THE SOUTH (1820-1830) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

    V. COLONIZATION OF THE WEST (1820-1830)  . . . . . . . . 67

       WEST (1820-1830)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84

  VII. WESTERN COMMERCE AND IDEALS (1820-1830) . . . . . . . 96

 VIII. THE FAR WEST (1820-1830)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111

   IX. THE CRISIS OF 1819 AND ITS RESULTS (1819-1820)  . . . 134

    X. THE MISSOURI COMPROMISE (1819-1821) . . . . . . . . . 149

   XI. PARTY POLITICS (1820-1822)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172

  XII. THE MONROE DOCTRINE (1821-1823) . . . . . . . . . . . 199

 XIII. INTERNAL IMPROVEMENTS (1818-1824) . . . . . . . . . . 224

  XIV. THE TARIFF OF 1824 (1820-1824)  . . . . . . . . . . . 236

   XV. THE ELECTION OF 1824 (1822-1825)  . . . . . . . . . . 245




       EXPOSITION (1827-1828)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 314

   XX. CRITICAL ESSAY ON AUTHORITIES . . . . . . . . . . . . 333

[Proofreaders note: Index and Maps omitted]


In many previous volumes of the series, the region beyond the
Alleghenies has been recognized as an influence and a potentiality
in American history. Thwaites, in his "France in America," shows how
the French opened up the country and prepared the way; the Tennessee
and Kentucky settlements are described in Howard's "Preliminaries of
the Revolution"; Van Tyne's "American Revolution" goes into the
earliest western governments; McLaughlin's "Confederation and
Constitution" deals with the organization of the new communities by
Congress; Bassett's "Federalist System" and Channing's "Jeffersonian
System" show how the diplomacy and politics of the country were
affected by the appearance of a new group of equal states; while
Babcock's "Rise of American Nationality" carries the influence of
those states into a broader national life. Professor Turner takes up
the west as an integral part of the Union, with a self-consciousness
as lively as that of the east or south, with its own aims and
prejudices, but a partner in the councils and the benefits of the
national government which, as a whole, it is the aim of this volume
to describe.

In a way the west is simply a broader east, for up to the end of the
period covered by this volume most of the grown men and women in the
west came across the mountains to found new homes--the New-Englander
in western New York; the Pennsylvanian diverging westward and
southwestward; the Virginian in Kentucky; the North-Carolinian in
Tennessee and Missouri and, along with the South-Carolinian and
Georgian, in the new southwestern states; while north of the Ohio
River the principal element up to 1830 was southern.

To describe such a movement and its effects, Professor Turner has
the advantage to be a descendant of New-Yorkers, of New England
stock, but native to the west, and living alongside the most
complete collection of materials upon the west which has ever been
brought together--the Library of the Wisconsin State Historical
Society. His point of view is that the west and east were always
interdependent, and that the rising power of the western states in
national affairs was a wholesome and natural outcome of forces at
work for half a century. The transformation of the west from a rude
and boisterous frontier to a group of states, soon rivaling their
parent communities in population and wealth, was not unlike the
process through which Massachusetts and Pennsylvania and Virginia
passed as colonies, except that the inland people accepted ideals
and standards originally English, but worked out and put into shape
by their colonist fathers.

As the volume treats of the nation, and not simply of any section,
it contains three chapters (i., ii., iii.) on the social and
political life in New England, the middle region, and the south. The
next four chapters are a systematic account of the west as the
settler and the traveler saw it. between 1820 and 1830. In chapter
v., on Colonization, the settlers are traced from their old homes to
their new ones by road and river. Chapter vi., off Social and
Economic Development, is a picture of frontier life in the forest
and on the farm; chapter vii. brings into relief the need of a
market and the difficulty of reaching tide-water with western
products--a subject taken up again in the two later chapters on
internal improvements; chapter viii., on The Far West, goes with the
trapper into the mountains and then across the continent to
California and to Oregon, which were included in the ambitions of
the buoyant westerner.

Chapters ix. to xi. are a narrative of a succession of national
questions involving all sections--the commercial crisis of 1819; the
Missouri Compromise, which was in good part a western question; and
the slow recrystallization of political parties after 1820. Chapter
xii. is on the Monroe Doctrine, which included eastern questions of
commerce, southern questions of nearness to Cuba, and western
questions of Latin-American neighbors. Chapters xiii. and xvii.
describe the efforts by internal improvements to help all the
states, and especially to bind the eastern and western groups
together by the Cumberland Road and by canals. Chapters xiv. to xvi.
take up the tariff of 1824, the presidential election of that year,
and its political results. Chapter xviii. brings into clear light
the causes for the reaction from the ardent nationalism described in
Babcock's American Nationality. With chapter xix., on the tariff of
1828 and the South Carolina protest, the narrative part of the
volume closes. The Critical Essay on Authorities and a wealth of
foot-notes carry the reader back to materials little studied
hitherto, and prepare the way for many detailed investigations.

The aim of the volume is not to show the Rise of the New West as
though it were a separate story, but to show how the nation found
itself in the midst of questions involving the west, and how all
parts of the Union were enriched and stimulated by the appearance of
a new section. It opens up new vistas of historical study.


In the present volume I have kept before myself the importance of
regarding American development as the outcome of economic and social
as well as political forces. To make plain the attitude and
influence of New England, the middle region, the south, and the
west, and of the public men who reflected the changing conditions of
those sections in the period under consideration, has been my
principal purpose.

The limits of the volume have prevented the elaboration of some
points well worthy of fuller treatment; and, by the plan of the
series, certain aspects of the period have been reserved for other

I desire to express my cordial appreciation of the friendly
criticism and assistance I have received from the editor, Professor
Hart. To Professor Carl R. Fish, Professor A. A. Young, and Dr. U.
B. Phillips, my colleagues, I am indebted for a critical reading of
several chapters. I have drawn on the manuscript sources possessed
by Dr. Phillips for information on many points of southern history.

Several of the topics dealt with in the volume have been
investigated by graduate students in my seminary; particularly I
have profited by the papers of Professor Homer C. Hockett on the
Missouri Compromise and the rise of Jacksonian democracy; of Mr.
Royal B. Way, now instructor in history in Northwestern University,
on internal improvements; and of Dr. W. V. Pooley and Mr. A. C.
Boggess on the settlement of Illinois. Mr. S. J. Buck, my assistant
in American history, prepared under my direction some of the maps,
particularly those of congressional votes.

The map of western fur-trading posts in Captain Chittenden's
excellent History of the American Fur Trade furnished the basis for
the map of western posts and trails. In the construction of the map
of highways and waterways, I have used the map of H. S. Tanner,
1825, and Hewett's American Traveller (Washington, 1825). From the
maps in the Eighteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology have
been drawn the data for the map of Indian cessions. The editor
kindly supplied the map of Russian settlements and claims.

For the portrait of Henry Clay, which forms the frontispiece, thanks
are due to Mr. Charles Henry Hart, of Philadelphia, the owner of the
life-mask made by J. H. Browere.





The history of the United States is the history of a growing nation.
Every period of its life is a transitional period, but that from the
close of the War of 1812 to the election of Andrew Jackson was
peculiarly one of readjustment. It was during this time that the new
republic gave clear evidence that it was throwing off the last
remnants of colonial dependence. The Revolution had not fully
severed the United States from the European state system; but now
the United States attained complete independence and asserted its
predominance in the western continent. It was in this period that
the nation strengthened its hold on the Gulf of Mexico by the
acquisition of Florida, recognized the independence of the revolting
Spanish-American colonies, and took the leadership of the free
sisterhood of the New World under the terms of the Monroe Doctrine.

The joyous outburst of nationalism which at first succeeded the
dissensions of the period of war revealed itself in measures passed
in Congress, under the leadership of Calhoun and Clay; it spoke
clearly in the decisions of Judge Marshall; and in the lofty tone of
condemnation with which the country as a whole reproached New
England for the sectionalism exhibited in the Hartford Convention.
[Footnote: Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chaps, ix.,
xviii.; Gallatin, Writings, I., 700.]

It was not only in the field of foreign relations, in an aroused
national sentiment, and in a realization that the future of the
country lay in the development of its own resources that America
gave evidence of fundamental change. In the industrial field
transportation was revolutionized by the introduction of the
steamboat and by the development of canals and turnpikes. The
factory system, nourished by the restrictions of the embargo and the
war, rapidly developed until American manufactures became an
interest which, in political importance, outweighed the old
industries of shipping and foreign commerce. The expansion of
cotton-planting transformed the energies of the south, extended her
activity into the newer regions of the Gulf, and gave a new life to
the decaying institution of slavery.

From all the older sections, but especially from the south and its
colonies in Kentucky and Tennessee, a flood of colonists was
spreading along the waters of the west. In the Mississippi Valley
the forests were falling before the blows of the pioneers, cities
were developing where clearings had just let in the light of day,
and new commonwealths were seeking outlets for their surplus and
rising to industrial and political power. It is this vast
development of the internal resources of the United States, the
"Rise of the New West," that gives the tone to the period. "The
peace," wrote Webster in later years, "brought about an entirely new
and a most interesting state of things; it opened to us other
prospects and suggested other duties. We ourselves were changed, and
the whole world was changed. . . . Other nations would produce for
themselves, and carry for themselves, and manufacture for
themselves, to the full extent of their abilities. The crops of our
plains would no longer sustain European armies, nor our ships longer
supply those whom war had rendered unable to supply themselves. It
was obvious, that, under these circumstances, the country would
begin to survey itself, and to estimate its own capacity of
improvement." [Footnote: Webster, Writings (National ed.), VI., 28.]

These very forces of economic transformation were soon followed by a
distinct reaction against the spirit of nationalism and
consolidation which had flamed out at the close of the War of 1812.
This was shown, not only in protests against the loose-construction
tendencies of Congress, and in denunciations of the decisions of the
great chief-justice, but more significantly in the tendency of the
separate geographical divisions of the country to follow their own
interests and to make combinations with one another on this basis.

From one point of view the United States, even in this day of its
youth, was more like an empire than a nation. Sectionalism had been
fundamental in American history before the period which we have
reached. The vast physiographic provinces of the country formed the
basis for the development of natural economic and social areas,
comparable in their size, industrial resources, and spirit, to
nations of the Old World. In our period these sections underwent
striking transformations, and engaged, under new conditions, in the
old struggle for power. Their leaders, changing their attitude
towards public questions as the economic conditions of their
sections changed, were obliged not only to adjust themselves to the
interests of the sections which they represented, but also, if they
would achieve a national career, to make effective combinations with
other sections. [Footnote: Turner. "Problems of American History,"
in Congress of Arts and Sciences, St. Louis, II.]

This gives the clew to the decade. Underneath the superficial calm
of the "Era of Good Feeling," and in contradiction to the apparent
absorption of all parties into one, there were arising new issues,
new party formations, and some of the most profound changes in the
history of American evolution.

The men of the time were not unaware of these tendencies. Writing in
1823, Henry Clay declared that it was a just principle to inquire
what great interests belong to each section of our country, and to
promote those interests, as far as practicable, consistently with
the Constitution, having always an eye to the welfare of the whole.
"Assuming this principle," said he, "does any one doubt that if New
York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and the Western
States constituted an independent nation, it would immediately
protect the important interests in question? And is it not to be
feared that, if protection is not to be found for vital interests,
from the existing systems, in great parts of the confederacy, those
parts will ultimately seek to establish a system that will afford
the requisite protection?" [Footnote: Clay, Works, IV., 81, 82;
Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., 1 Sess., II., 1997, 2423.]

While the most prominent western statesman thus expressed his
conviction that national affairs were to be conducted through
combinations between sections on the basis of peculiar interests,
Calhoun, at first a nationalist, later the leader of the south,
changed his policy to a similar system of adjustments between the
rival sections. John Quincy Adams, in 1819, said of Calhoun: "he is
above all sectional and factious prejudices more than any other
statesman of this union with whom I have ever acted." [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, V., 361, VI., 75.] But Calhoun, by the close of the
decade, was not only complaining that the protective policy of
certain sections set a dangerous example "of separate
representation, and association of great Geographical interests to
promote their prosperity at the expense of other interests," but he
was also convinced that a great defect in our system was that the
separate geographical interests were not sufficiently guarded.
[Footnote: Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1899, II., 250.] Speaking, in
1831, of the three great interests of the nation--the north, the
south, and the west--he declared that they had been struggling in a
fierce war with one another, and that the period was approaching
which was to determine whether they could be reconciled or not so as
to perpetuate the Union. [Footnote: Am. Hist. Rev., VI., 742; cf.
J.Q. Adams, in Richardson, Messages and Papers. II., 297; J. Taylor,
New Views, 261; [Turnbull]. The Crisis, No. 2.]

We see, therefore, that, in the minds of some of the most
enlightened statesmen of this decade, American politics were
essentially a struggle for power between rival sections. Even those
of most enlarged national sympathies and purposes accepted the fact
of sectional rivalries and combinations as fundamental in their
policies. To understand the period, we must begin with a survey of
the separate sections in the decade from 1820 to 1830, and determine
what were the main interests shown in each and impressed upon the
leaders who represented them. For the purposes of such a survey, the
conventional division into New England, middle region, south, and
west may be adopted. It is true that within each of these sections
there were areas which were so different as to constitute almost
independent divisions, and which had close affiliations with other
sections. Nevertheless, the conventional grouping will reveal
fundamental and contrasted interests and types of life between the
various sections. In the rivalries of their leaders these sectional
differences found political expression. By first presenting a
narrative of forces in the separate sections, the narrative of
events in the nation will be better understood.

A sectional survey, however, cannot fully exhibit one profound
change, not easy to depict except by its results. This was the
formation of the self-conscious American democracy, strongest in the
west and middle region, but running across all sections and tending
to divide the people on the lines of social classes. This democracy
came to its own when Andrew Jackson triumphed over the old order of
things and rudely threw open the sanctuary of federal government to
the populace.


NEW ENGLAND (1820-1830)

By geographical position, the land of the Puritans was devoted to
provincialism. While other sections merged into one another and even
had a west in their own midst, New England was obliged to cross
populous states in order to reach the regions into which national
life was expanding; and her sons who migrated found themselves under
conditions that weakened their old affiliations and linked their
fortunes with the section which they entered. The ocean had
dominated New England's interests and connected her with the Old
World; the fisheries and carrying--trade had engrossed her attention
until the embargo and the War of 1812 gave importance to her
manufactures. In spirit, also, New England was a section apart, The
impress of Puritanism was still strong upon her, and the unity of
her moral life was exceptional. Moreover, up to the beginning of the
decade with which we have to deal, New England had a population of
almost unmixed English origin, contrasting sharply, in this respect,
with the other sections. [Footnote: For the characteristics of New
England in colonial times, see Tyler, England in America, chaps,
xviii., xix.; Andrews, Colonial Self-Government, chaps, xviii.,
xix.; Greene, Provincial America, chaps, xii., xiii., xvi.-xviii.;
Bassett, Federalist System, chaps, xi., xiii. (Am. Nation, IV., V.,
VI., XI.)].

With these peculiarities, New England often played an important
sectional role, not the least effective instance of which had been
her independent attitude in the War of 1812. [Footnote: Babcock, Am.
Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. ix.] By 1820, not only were
profound economic and social changes affecting the section, but its
relative importance as a factor in our political life was declining.
[Footnote: Adams, United States, IX., chaps, iv., vii.] The trans-
Allegheny states, which in 1790 reported only a little over one
hundred thousand souls, at a time when New England's population was
over one million, had in 1820 reached a population of nearly two
millions and a quarter, while New England had not much over a
million and a half. Ten years later, the latter section had less
than two millions, while the western states beyond the Alleghenies
had over three millions and a half, and the people northwest of the
Ohio River alone numbered nearly a million and a half. In 1820 the
total population of New England was about equal to the combined
population of New York and New Jersey; but its increase between 1820
and 1830 was hardly three hundred thousand, not much over half that
of New York, and less than the gain of Ohio. If Maine, the growing
state of the group, be excluded, the increase of the whole section
was less than that of the frontier state of Indiana. "Our New
England prosperity and importance are passing away," wrote Webster
at the beginning of the period. [Footnote: McMaster, Webster, 90.]

Were it not that New England was passing through a series of
revolutionary economic changes, not fully appreciated at that time,
doubtless the percentage of her growth would have been even more
unfavorable. As it was, the rise of new manufactures helped to save
her from becoming an entirely stationary section. In the course of
the preceding two decades, New England's shipping industry had
reached an extraordinary height, by reason of her control of the
neutral trade during the European wars. The close of that period saw
an apparent decline in her relative maritime power in the Union, but
the shipping and commercial interests were still strong. New England
possessed half the vessels owned in the United States and over half
the seamen. Massachusetts alone had a quarter of the ships of the
nation and over a third of the sailors. [Footnote: Pitkin,
Statistical View (ed. of 1835), 350.] Of the exports of the United
States in 1820, the statistics gave to New England about twenty per
cent., nine-tenths of which were from Massachusetts. [Footnote:
Shaler, United States, I., chap, x.; MacGregor, Commercial
Statistics of America, 41, 58, 63, 72, 126, 133.] This is rather an
under-estimate of the share of New England, because a portion of the
commerce fitted out by her capital and her ships sought the harbor
of New York.

Great as was New England's interest in the commercial policy of the
United States, the manufactures of the section rose to such
importance in the course of this decade that the policy of the
section was divided. The statistics of the manufactures of the
United States at the beginning and at the end of the period were so
defective that little dependence can be placed upon them for
details. But the figures for New England were more complete than for
the other regions; the product of her cotton mills increased in
value from two and one-half million dollars in 1820 to over fifteen
and one-half millions in 1831; and her woolen products rose from
less than a million dollars to over eleven million dollars. In
Massachusetts alone, in the same years, the increase in cottons was
from about seven hundred thousand dollars to over seven million
seven hundred thousand dollars; and in woolens, from less than three
hundred thousand dollars to over seven million three hundred
thousand dollars. [Footnote: See Secretary of Treasury, Report,
1854-1855, PP-, 87-92; "Treasury Report," in House Exec. Docs., 22
Cong., i Sess., I., No. 308.]

In brief, the period witnessed the transfer of the industrial center
of gravity from the harbors to the water-falls, from commerce and
navigation to manufactures. Besides the textile mills of Rhode
Island and Connecticut, the Merrimac mills grew rapidly around
Lowell, Massachusetts; the water-powers of New Hampshire became the
sites of factory towns, and the industrial revolution which, in the
time of the embargo, began to transfer industries from the household
to the factory, was rapidly carried on. A labor class began to
develop, farmers moved into towns, the daughters worked in the
mills. It was not long before Irish immigrants found their way to
the section and replaced the natives in the mills. The old social
and racial unity began to break down. [Footnote: Woollen, "Labor
Troubles between 1834 and 1837," in Yale Review, I., 87; Martineau,
Society in America, II., 227, 243, 246; Chevalier, Society, Manners,
and Politics, 137; Addison, Lucy Larcom, 6; Clay, Works, V., 467.]

Agriculture still occupied the larger number of New England people,
but it was relatively a declining interest. As early as 1794, Tench
Coxe had characterized New England as a completely settled region,
with the exception of Maine and Vermont. The generation that
followed saw an expansion of agricultural population until the best
valley lands were taken and the hill-sides were occupied by
struggling farmers. By 1830 New England was importing corn and flour
in large quantities from the other sections. The raising of cattle
and sheep increased as grain cultivation declined. The back-country
of Maine particularly was being occupied for cattle farms, and in
Vermont and the Berkshires there was, towards the close of the
decade, a marked tendency to combine the small farms into sheep
pastures. Thus, in the tariff agitation of the latter part of the
decade, these two areas of western New England showed a decided
sympathy with the interests of the wool-growers of the country at
large. This tendency also fostered emigration from New England,
since it diminished the number of small farms. By the sale of their
lands to their wealthier neighbors, the New England farmers were
able to go west with money to invest. [Footnote: Niles' Register,
XLIX., 68; Smith and Rann, Rutland County [Vt.], 166; Goodhue, Hist.
of Shoreham [Vt.], 59; Nat. Assoc. of Wool Manufacturers, Bulletin,
XXX., 47, 242, 261.]

In the outlying parts, like the back-country of Vermont, farmers
still lived under primitive industrial conditions, supporting the
family largely from the products of the farm, weaving and spinning
under the conditions of household industry that had characterized
the colonial period, slaughtering their cattle and hogs, and packing
their cheese. When the cold weather set in, caravans of Vermont
farmers passed, by sledges, to the commercial centers of New
England. [Footnote: Heaton, Story of Vermont, chap. vi.] But the
conditions of life were hard for the back-country farmer, and the
time was rapidly approaching when the attractions of the western
prairies would cause a great exodus from these regions.

While New England underwent the economic changes that have been
mentioned, a political revolution was also in progress. The old
Federalist party and Federalist ideas gradually gave way. Federalism
found its most complete expression in Connecticut, "the land of
steady habits," where "Innovation" had always been frowned upon by a
governing class in which the Congregational clergy were powerful.
Permanence in office and the influence of the clergy were prominent
characteristics of the Connecticut government. [Footnote: Dwight,
Travels, I., 262, 263, 291; Welling, "Conn. Federalism," in N. Y.
Hist. Soc., Address, 1890, pp. 39-41.] The ceremonies of the
counting of votes for governor indicated the position of the
dominant classes in this society. This solemnity was performed in
the church. "After the Representatives," wrote Dwight, the president
of Yale College, "walk the Preacher of the Day, and the Preacher of
the succeeding year: and a numerous body of the Clergy, usually more
than one hundred, close the procession." He notes that there were
several thousand spectators from all over the state, who were
perfectly decorous, not even engaging in noisy conversation, and
that a public dinner was regularly given by the state to the clergy
who were present at the election. [Footnote: Dwight, Travels, I.,

After the War of 1812, this dominance of the Congregational clergy
throughout the section was attacked by a combination of religious
and political forces. [Footnote: Schouler, United States, II., 282,
511, III., 52; Adams, United States, IX., 133.] There had been a
steady growth of denominations like the Baptists and Methodists in
New England. As a rule, these were located in the remoter and newer
communities, and, where they were strongest, there was certain to be
a considerable democratic influence. Not only did these
denominations tend to unite against the Federalists and the
Congregationalists, but they found useful allies in the members of
the old and influential Episcopal church, who had with them a common
grievance because of the relations between the state and
Congregationalism. Although the original support of the
Congregational clergy by public taxation had been modified by
successive acts of legislation in most of these states, so that
persons not of that church might make their legal contributions for
the support of their own clergy, [Footnote: Fearon, Sketches of
America, 114.] yet this had been achieved only recently and but

We find, therefore, that the alliance of Episcopalians and
Dissenters against the dominant clergy and the Federalists was the
key to internal politics at the opening of our period. "The old
political distinctions," wrote the editor of the Vermont Journal,
"seem to have given place to religious ones." But the religious
contentions were so closely interwoven with the struggle of New
England's democracy to throw off the control of the established
classes, that the contest was in reality rather more political and
social than religious. By her constitutional convention of 1818,
Connecticut practically disestablished the Congregational church and
did away with the old manner of choosing assistants. [Footnote:
Baldwin, "The Three Constitutions of Conn.," in New Haven Colony
Hist. Soc., Papers, V., 210-214.] In the election of 1820 the
Republican candidate for governor was elected by a decisive vote,
and all of Connecticut's representation in the lower house of
Congress was Republican, [Footnote: Niles' Register, XVIII., 128.]
although, in 1816, the Federalist candidate had been chosen by a
small majority. [Footnote: Adams, United States, IX., 133.] New
Hampshire's toleration act was passed in 1819, but she had achieved
her revolution as early as 1816, when a union of the anti-
Congregational denominations with the Republicans destroyed the
ascendancy of the Federalists and tried to break that party's
control of the educational center at Dartmouth College. [Footnote:
P. B. Sanborn, New Hampshire, 251 et seq.; Barstow, New Hampshire,
chaps, xi., xii.; Plumer, William Plumer, 437-460.]

The contest was not so clearly marked in Massachusetts as in the
other states, for the old centers of Congregational power, notably
Harvard College, had already begun to feel the liberalizing
influence of the Unitarian movement. Congregationalism in
Massachusetts divided into warring camps [Footnote: Walker, Cong.
Churches in the U.S., 303-308.] and was not in a position to
exercise the political power it had shown in other states of New
England. The discussion in that state between the Unitarian and
orthodox wings of the Congregational churches tended, on the whole,
to moderate the extreme views of each, as well as to prevent their
united domination. In her constitutional convention of 1820,
Massachusetts refused to do away with the advantage which the
Congregational church had in the matter of public support, and it
was not until 1833 that the other denominations secured the complete
separation of church and state. The moderate attitude of the
Federalists of the state lengthened their tenure of power. Governor
Brooks, elected by the Federalists in 1817, was a friend of Monroe,
and a moderate who often took Republicans for his counselors, a
genuine representative of what has been aptly termed the "Indian
summer of Federalism in Massachusetts."

The Republican party controlled the other states of the section, but
there was in New England, as a whole, a gradual decline and
absorption, rather than a destruction, of the Federalist party,
while, at the same time, marked internal political differences
constituted a basis for subsequent political conflicts. Just before
he took his seat in Congress in 1823, Webster lamented to Judge
Story that New England did not get out of the "dirty squabble of
local politics, and assert her proper character and consequence."
"We are disgraced," he said, "beyond help or hope by these things.
There is a Federal interest, a Democratic interest, a bankrupt
interest, an orthodox interest, and a middling interest; but I see
no national interest, nor any national feeling in the whole
matter."[Footnote: McMaster, Webster, 99.]

In general, northern New England--Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont-
-showed a distinct tendency towards Democracy; in southern New
England the fortifications of Federalism and Congregational power
lay in a wide belt along the Connecticut River, while along the sea-
coast and in the Berkshire region the Democratic forces showed

From the outlying rural forces, where Democracy was strong, the
settlement of New-Englanders in the middle west was to come. To
Timothy Dwight, the president of Yale, who voiced the extreme
conservatism of Federal New England, the pioneers seemed unable to
live in regular society. "They are impatient of the restraints of
law, religion, and morality; grumble about the taxes, by which
Rulers, Ministers, and School-masters, are supported; and complain
incessantly, as well as bitterly, of the extortions of mechanics,
farmers, merchants, and physicians; to whom they are always
indebted. At the same time, they are usually possessed, in their own
view, of uncommon wisdom; understand medical science, politics, and
religion, better than those, who have studied them through life."
These restless men, with nothing to lose, who were delighted with
innovation, were, in his judgment, of the type that had ruined
Greece and Rome. "In mercy, therefore," exclaimed Dwight, "to the
sober, industrious, and well-disposed inhabitants, Providence has
opened in the vast western wilderness a retreat, sufficiently
alluring to draw them away from the land of their nativity. We have
many troubles even now; but we should have many more, if this body
of foresters had remained at home." [Footnote: Dwight, Travels, II.,

Perhaps the most striking feature of New England life was its
organization into communities. What impressed the traveler from
other sections or from the Old World was partly the small farms,
divided into petty fields by stone fences, but, above all, "the
clustering of habitations in villages instead of dispersing them at
intervals of a mile over the country." The spires of the white
churches of separate hamlets dotted the landscape. Simple comfort
and thrift were characteristic of the region. "Here," wrote a
Virginia planter, traveling in New England in the early thirties,
"is not apparent a hundredth part of the abject squalid poverty that
our State presents." [Footnote: "Minor's Journal," in Atlantic
Monthly, XXVI., 333.]

The morale of New England was distinctive. Puritanism had founded
the section, and two centuries of Calvinistic discipline had molded
the New England conscience. That serious self-consciousness, that
self-scrutiny, almost morbid at times, by which the Puritan tried to
solve the problem of his personal salvation, to determine whether he
was of the elect, [Footnote: Wendell, Cotton Mather, 6.] was
accompanied by an almost equal anxiety concerning the conduct of his
neighbors. The community life of New England emphasized this trait.

Tudor, who was not friendly to the ideals of the "land of steady
habits," criticized "the narrowing influence of local policy," and
lamented the "sort of habitual, pervading police, made up of
Calvinistic inquisition and village scrutiny" in Connecticut.
[Footnote: Tudor, Letters on the Eastern States (ed. of 1821), 60.]
Not to be one's brother's keeper and not to assent to the dictates
of community sentiment were indications of moral laxity. This long
training in theological inquiry, this continued emphasis upon
conduct, and this use of community sentiment as a means of enforcing
certain moral and political ideals, led the New-Englander to war
with opposing conceptions wherever he went.

A test of the ideals of New England is found in the attitude of
those who spread into new regions. The migrating Yankee was a
reformer. A considerable proportion of the New-Englanders who left
the section were "come-outers" in religion as in politics; many of
the Vermonters and the pioneers who went west were radicals. But the
majority of these dissenters from the established order carried with
them a body of ideas regarding conduct and a way of looking at the
world that were deeply influenced by their old Puritan training. If,
indeed, they revolted from the older type of Calvinism in the freer
air of a new country, they were, by this sudden release from
restraint, likely to develop "isms" of their own, which revealed the
strong underlying forces of religious thinking. Lacking the
restraining influence of the old Congregational system, some of them
contented themselves with placing greater emphasis upon emotional
religion and eagerly embraced membership in churches like the
Baptist or Methodist, or accepted fellowship with Presbyterians and
welcomed the revival spirit of the western churches.

Others used their freedom to proclaim a new order of things in the
religious world. Most noteworthy was Mormonism, which was founded by
a migrating New England family and was announced and reached its
first success among the New-Englanders of New York and Ohio.
Antimasonry and spiritualism flourished in the Greater New England
in which these emancipated Puritans settled. Wherever the New-
Englander went he was a leader in reform, in temperance crusades, in
abolition of slavery, in Bible societies, in home missions, in the
evangelization of the west, in the promotion of schools, and in the
establishment of sectarian colleges.

Perhaps the most significant elements in the disintegration of the
old Congregationalism in New England itself, however, were furnished
by the Unitarians and the Universalists. For nearly a generation the
liberal movement in religion had been progressing. The Unitarian
revolt, of which Channing was the most important leader, laid its
emphasis upon conduct rather than upon a plan of salvation by
atonement. In place of original sin and total depravity, it came
more and more to put stress upon the fatherhood of God and the
dignity of man. The new optimism of this faith was carried in still
another direction by the Universalist movement, with its gospel of
universal salvation.

The strength of the Unitarian movement was confined to a limited
area about Boston, but within its own sphere of influence it
contested successfully with the old Congregational power, captured
Harvard College, and caught the imaginations of large numbers of the
best educated and prosperous classes of the community. Attempting to
adjust themselves between the old order of things on the one side,
and the new forces of evangelism and liberalism on the other,
another great body of Congregationalists found a middle ground in a
movement of modified Calvinism, which sustained the life of
Congregationalism in large areas of New England. By these movements
of conflict and readjustment, whatever of unity the older
Congregational faith had possessed was gradually broken down and a
renaissance of religious and moral ideas was ushered in.

This change was soon to find expression in a new literary movement
in New England, a movement in which poetry and prose were to take on
a cheerful optimism, a joy in life, and an idealism. This new
literature reflected the influence of the Unitarian movement, the
influence of European romantic literature, and the influence of
German philosophy. Before long the Transcendentalists proclaimed the
new idealism that was showing itself about Boston. [Footnote:
Wendell, Literary Hist. of America, book V., chaps. iv., v.] Bryant,
Longfellow, Whittier, Hawthorne, and Emerson were all prophesied in
the forces of intellectual change that now spread over the section.

Even New England's statesmen were deeply influenced by the literary
spirit. Daniel Webster, although the son of a New Hampshire pioneer
whose log cabin was on the edge of the vast forest that stretched
north to Canada, had won an education at the "little college" at
Dartmouth; and, after his removal to Boston, he captivated New
England by his noble commemorative orations and enriched his
arguments before the courts by the splendor of his style. He united
the strong, passionate nature of his backwoods father with a mind
brought under the influences of the cultured society of Boston. John
Quincy Adams, also, had been professor of rhetoric and oratory at
Harvard, and he found in the classics a solace when the political
world grew dark around him. Edward Everett represented even more
clearly the union of the man of letters with the political leader.
If we except the brilliant but erratic John Randolph, of Roanoke, no
statesman from other sections showed this impress of literature.

While these forces were developing, a liberalizing of the colleges,
and particularly of Harvard, by the introduction of new courses in
literature and science, was in progress. Reform movements, designed
to give fuller expression to common-school public education, began,
and already in 1821 Boston had established the first English high-
school, precursor of a movement of profound importance in the
uplifting of the masses. Lyceums and special schools for the
laborers flourished in the new centers of manufacturing. The smaller
educational centers, like Dartmouth, Bowdoin, Amherst, and Williams,
where the farmer boys of New England worked their way through
college, sent out each year men to other sections to become leaders
at the bar, in the pulpit, in the press, and in the newer colleges.
The careers of Amos Kendall, Prentiss, and others illustrate these
tendencies. In short, New England was training herself to be the
school-mistress of the nation. Her abiding power was to lie in the
influence which she exerted in letters, in education, and in reform.
She was to find a new life and a larger sphere of activity in the
wide-spread western communities which were already invaded by her
sons. In furnishing men of talent in these fields she was to have an
influence out of all relation to her population.[Footnote: Century
Mag., XLVII., 43.]



The middle states formed a zone of transition between the east and
the west, the north and the south [Footnote: For earlier discussions
of the middle colonies and states, see Tyler, ENGLAND IN AMERICA,
chap, xvii.; Andrews, COLONIAL SELF-GOVERNMENT, chaps, v., vii.,
xviii., xix.; Greene, PROVINCIAL AMERICA, chaps. xvi.-xviii. (AM.
NATION, IV., V., VI.)]. Geographically, they lay on the line of the
natural routes between the Atlantic on the one side, and the Ohio
and the Great Lakes on the other. [Footnote: Gallatin, WRITINGS,
AND CHAMPLAIN CANALS, I., 140.] The waters of the Susquehanna,
rising near the lake region of central New York, flowed to
Chesapeake Bay, which opened into the Atlantic far down Virginia's
coast-line. The Great Valley ran through eastern Pennsylvania,
across Maryland, and, in the form of the Shenandoah Valley, made a
natural highway to the interior of North Carolina. New York City and
Philadelphia saw in an intimate connection with the rising west the
pledge of their prosperity; and Baltimore, which was both a
metropolis of the south and of the middle region, extended her trade
north to central New York, west to the Ohio, and south into
Virginia, and, like her rivals, sent her fleets to garner the
commercial harvest of the sea. In the composition of its population,
also, the middle region was a land of transitions between sections,
and a prototype of the modern United States, composite in its
nationality. In New York an influential Dutch element still
remained; the New England settlers had colonized the western half of
the state and about equaled the native population. In Pennsylvania,
Germans and Scotch-Irishmen had settled in such numbers in the
course of the eighteenth century that, by the time of the
Revolution, her population was almost evenly divided between these
stocks and the English. [Footnote: See Lincoln, Revolutionary
Movement in Pa., in University of Pa., Publications, I., 24, 35.]
There was also a larger proportion of recent immigrants than in any
other state, for by 1830 Pennsylvania had one unnaturalized alien to
every fifty inhabitants.

Following the Great Valley in the middle of the same century, the
Scotch-Irish and German settlers had poured into the up-country of
the south, so that these interior counties of Virginia and the
Carolinas were like a peninsula thrust down from Pennsylvania into
the south, with economic, racial, social, and religious connections
which made an intimate bond between the two sections. A multitude of
religious sects flourished in tolerant Pennsylvania, and even the
system of local government was a combination of the New England town
and the southern county.

This region, therefore, was essentially a mediating, transitional
zone, including in its midst an outlying New England and a west, and
lacking the essential traits of a separate section. It was
fundamentally national in its physiography, its composition, and its
ideals--a fighting-ground for political issues which found their
leaders in the other sections.

Compared with New England, the middle region was a rapidly growing
section. The population of New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and
Delaware combined was about two and three-quarter millions in 1820,
and three and two-third millions in 1830. By that date New York
alone balanced all New England in the number of its people. But it
was its western half that permitted this growth of the middle
section. During the decade 1820-1830, New York west of Oneida Lake
increased in population by a percentage more than twice as great,
and by an amount almost as great, as that of the populous eastern
half of the state. By the end of the decade, about one-third of
Pennsylvania's population was found west of her central counties. At
that time New York and Pennsylvania became the most populous states
in the Union. Virginia and Massachusetts, which in 1790 held the
lead, had now fallen to third and eighth place respectively. New
Jersey, meanwhile, lagged far behind, and Delaware's rate of
increase was only five and one-half per cent. In 1829 a member of
the Virginia constitutional convention asked: "Do gentlemen really
believe, that it is owing to any diversity in the principles of the
State Governments of the two states, that New York has advanced to
be the first state in the Union, and that Virginia, from being the
first, is now the third, in wealth and population? Virginia ceded
away her Kentucky, to form a new state; and New York has retained
her Genessee--there lies the whole secret." [Footnote: Va.
Constitutional Convention, Debates (1829-1830), 405.]

In the closing years of the eighteenth century and the first decade
of the nineteenth the New York lands beyond the sources of the
Mohawk had been taken up by a colonization characteristically
western. New England farmers swarmed into the region, hard on the
heels of the retreating Indians. Scarcely more than a decade before
1820 western New York presented typically frontier conditions. The
settlers felled and burned the forest, built little towns, and
erected mills, and now, with a surplus of agricultural products,
they were suffering from the lack of a market and were demanding
transportation facilities. Some of their lumber and flour found its
way by the lakes and the St. Lawrence to Montreal, a portion went by
rafts down the Allegheny to the waters of the Ohio, and some
descended the upper tributaries of the Susquehanna and found an
outlet in Baltimore or Philadelphia; but these routes were
unreliable and expensive, and by one of them trade was diverted from
the United States to Canada. There was a growing demand for canals
that should give economic unity to New York and turn the tide of her
interior commerce along the Mohawk and Lake Champlain into the
waters of the Hudson and so to the harbor of New York City. The Erie
and the Champlain canals were the outcome of this demand.

It is the glory of De Witt Clinton that he saw the economic
revolution which the Erie Canal would work, and that he was able to
present clearly and effectively the reasons which made the
undertaking practicable and the financial plan which made it
possible. He persuaded the legislature by the vision of a greater
Hudson River, not only reaching to the western confines of the
state, but even, by its connection with Lake Erie, stretching
through two thousand miles of navigable lakes and rivers to the very
heart of the interior of the United States. To him the Erie Canal
was a political as well as an economic undertaking. "As a bond of
union between the Atlantic and western states," he declared, "it may
prevent the dismemberment of the American empire. As an organ of
communication between the Hudson, the Mississippi, the St. Lawrence,
the great lakes of the north and west, and their tributary rivers,
it will create the greatest inland trade ever witnessed. The most
fertile and extensive regions of America will avail themselves of
its facilities for a market. All their surplus productions, whether
of the soil, the forest, the mines, or the water, their fabrics of
art and their supplies of foreign commodities, will concentrate in
the city of New-York, for transportation abroad or consumption at
home. Agriculture, manufactures, commerce, trade, navigation, and
the arts, will receive a correspondent encouragement. That city
will, in the course of time become the granary of the world, the
emporium of commerce, the seat of manufactures, the focus of great
moneyed operations, and the concentrating point of vast, disposable,
and accumulating capitals, which will stimulate, enliven, extend,
and reward the exertions of human labor and ingenuity, in all their
processes and exhibitions. And before the revolution of a century,
the whole island of Manhattan, covered with habitations and
replenished with a dense population, will constitute one vast city."
[Footnote: View of the Grand Canal (N. Y., 1825), 20.]

Sanguine as were Clinton's expectations, the event more than
justified his confidence. By 1825 the great canal system, reaching
by way of Lake Champlain to the St. Lawrence, and by way of the
Mohawk and the lakes of central New York to Lake Erie, was opened
for traffic throughout its whole length. The decrease in
transportation charges brought prosperity and a tide of population
into western New York; villages sprang up along the whole line of
the canal; the water-power was utilized for manufactures; land
values in the western part of the state doubled and in many cases
quadrupled; farm produce more than doubled in value. Buffalo and
Rochester became cities. [Footnote: J. Winden, Influence of the Erie
Canal (MS. Thesis, University of Wisconsin); U. S. Census of 1900,
Population, I., 430, 432; Callender, in Quarterly Journal of
Economics, XVII., 22; Hulbert, Historic Highways, XIV., chap. v.]
The raw products of the disappearing forests of western New York--
lumber, staves, pot and pearl ashes, etc., and the growing surplus
of agricultural products, began to flow in increasing volume down
this greater Hudson River to New York City. The farther west was
also turning its streams of commerce into this channel. The tolls of
the canal system were over half a million dollars immediately upon
its completion; for 1830 they were over a million dollars.
[Footnote: McMaster, United States, V., 135; Canal Commissioners of
N. Y., Report (January 17, 1833), App. A.] By 1833 the annual value
of the products sent by way of the Erie and Champlain canals was
estimated at thirteen million dollars. [Footnote: Pitkin,
Statistical View (ed. of 1835), 577.] At the close of this decade
the Ohio system of canals, inspired by the success of the Erie
Canal, had rendered a large area of that state tributary to New
York. The Great Lake navigation grew steadily, the Western Reserve
increased its population, and the harbor of Cleveland became a
center of trade.

The effect of all this upon New York City was revolutionary. Its
population increased from 123,000 in 1820 to 202,000 in 1830. Its
real and personal estate rose in value from about seventy million
dollars in 1820 to about one hundred and twenty-five million dollars
in 1830. [Footnote: U. S. Census of 1900, Population, I., 432;
MacGregor, Commercial Statistics of America, 145.] The most
significant result of the canal was the development of the commerce
of New York City, which rose from a market town for the Hudson River
to be the metropolis of the north. The value of the imports of New
York state in 1821 was twenty-four million dollars; in 1825, the
year of the completion of the canal, it was fifty million dollars.
This was an exceptional year, however, and in 1830 the value of the
imports was thirty-six million dollars. In 1821 New York had thirty-
eight per cent. of the total value of imports into the United
States; in 1825, over fifty per cent.; and this proportion she
maintained during our period. In the exports of domestic origin, New
York was surpassed in 1819 by Louisiana, and in 1820 by South
Carolina, but thereafter the state took and held the lead.
[Footnote: Compiled from Pitkin, Statistical View.] In 1823 the
amount of flour sent from the western portion of New York by the
Erie Canal equaled the whole amount which reached New Orleans from
the Mississippi Valley in that year. [Footnote: Based on statistics
in Report on Internal Commerce, 1887, p. 196; Canal Commissioners of
N. Y., Annual Report (February 20, 1824), 33.] The state of New York
had by a stroke achieved economic unity, and its metropolis at once
became the leading city of the country.

Philadelphia lost power as New York City gained it. Though the
counties tributary to Philadelphia constituted the old center of
population and political power, the significant fact of growth in
Pennsylvania was the increasing importance of Pittsburgh at the
gateway to the Ohio Valley. In the Great Valley beyond the Blue
Ridge lived the descendants of those early Germans and Scotch-
Irishmen who early occupied the broad and level fields of this
fertile zone, the granary of Pennsylvania. Beyond this rock-walled
valley lay the mountains in the west and north of the state, their
little valleys occupied by farmers, but already giving promise of
the rich yield of iron and coal on which the future greatness of the
state was to rest. The anthracite mines of the northeastern corner
of the state, which have given to their later possessors such
influence over the industries of the country, were just coming into
use. The iron ores of the middle mountain counties found their way
to the forges at Pittsburgh. Already the bituminous coals of the
western counties were serving to generate steam-power for the mills
upon the upper waters of the Ohio, but, as yet, the iron
manufacturers of the state depended on the abundant forests for the
production of coke for smelting.

The problem of transportation pressed hard upon Pennsylvania from
the beginning. While Philadelphia was obliged to contest with
Baltimore the possession of the eastern half of the state, she saw
the productions of the western counties descending the Ohio and
Mississippi to New Orleans. Even the trade in manufactured goods
which she had formerly sent to the western rivers was now menaced
from two quarters: the development of steam navigation on the
Mississippi enabled New Orleans to compete for this trade; and the
construction of the Erie Canal, with the projected system of
tributary canals in Ohio, made it plain to Pennsylvania that New
York was about to wrest from her the markets of the west. It had
taken thirty days and cost five dollars a hundred pounds to
transport goods from Philadelphia to Columbus, Ohio; the same
articles could be brought in twenty days from New York, by the Erie
Canal, at a cost of two dollars and a half a hundred. [Footnote:
McMaster, United States, V., 136.] To Pennsylvania the control of
the western market, always an important interest, had led in 1800 to
the construction of a system of turnpikes to connect Philadelphia
with Pittsburgh over the mountains, which developed a great wagon
trade. But the days of this wagon trade were now numbered, for the
National Road, joining the Ohio and the Potomac and passing south of
Pittsburgh, diverted a large share of this overland trade to
Baltimore. The superior safety, rapidity, and cheapness of canal
communication showed Pennsylvania that she must adjust her
transportation to the new conditions.

The way was prepared by the experience of corporations attempting to
reach the coal-fields of northeastern Pennsylvania. In 1820
practically the whole output from the anthracite fields came from
the Lehigh Valley and amounted to three hundred and sixty-five tons-
-an equivalent of one for each day of the year. By the end of the
decade the output of the anthracite fields was about one hundred and
seventy-five thousand tons, and the retail price was reduced to six
dollars and a half a ton. Navigation had been secured by the coal
companies between the mines and Philadelphia by the Schuylkill; the
Union Canal connected the Schuylkill and Susquehanna, and New York
City was supplied by the Delaware Canal. [Footnote: McCulloch,
Commercial Dictionary (ed. of 1852), I., 366; U.S. Census of 1880,
IV.; Worthington, Finances of Pa.]

This activity in Pennsylvania in the improvement of navigation so
far had been the work of corporations; but now, with the growth of
population in the west and the completion of the Erie Canal, a
popular demand arose for state construction of inland waterways. In
1825 the legislature passed an act under which an extensive system
of canals was begun, to connect Philadelphia with Pittsburgh, the
Allegheny River with Lake Erie, and Philadelphia with the central
counties of New York at the head of the Susquehanna. [Footnote: See
chap. xvii., below.] Obstacles speedily developed in the jealousies
of the various sections of the state. The farmers of the Great
Valley, whose interests lay in the development of a communication
with Baltimore, were not enthusiastic; the southern counties of the
state, along the line of the turnpikes, found their interests
threatened; and the citizens of the northwestern counties were
unwilling to postpone their demands for an outlet while the trunk-
line was building. These jealousies furnish issues for the politics
of the state during the rest of the decade. [Footnote: McCarthy,
'Antimasonic Party,' in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1902, I., 427.]

Nevertheless, Pennsylvania was growing rich through the development
of her agriculture and her manufactures. The iron industry of the
state was the largest in the Union. Although the industry was only
in its infancy, Pittsburgh was already producing or receiving a
large part of the pig-iron that was produced in Pennsylvania. The
figures of the census of 1820 give to the middle states over forty
per cent, of the product of pig-iron and castings and wrought iron
in the United States, the value of the latter article for
Pennsylvania being one million one hundred and fifty-six thousand
dollars as against four hundred and seventy-two thousand dollars for
New York. [Footnote: Secretary of Treasury, 'Report,' 1854-1855, p.
90.] The influence of this industry upon Pennsylvania politics
became apparent in the discussions over the protective tariff during
the decade.

Together, New York and Pennsylvania constituted a region dominated
by interest in the production of grain and the manufacture of iron.
Vast as was the commerce that entered the port of New York, the
capital and shipping for the port were furnished in part by New
England, and the real interest of the section was bound up with the
developing resources of the interior of the nation.

It must not be forgotten that, in these years of entrance upon its
industrial career, the middle region was also the scene of
intellectual movements of importance. These were the days when the
Knickerbocker school in New York brought independence and reputation
to American literature, when Irving, although abroad, worked the
rich mine of Hudson River traditions, and Cooper utilized his early
experience in the frontier around Lake Otsego to write his
"Leatherstocking Tales." Movements for social amelioration abounded.
The lighting of New York City and Philadelphia by gas diminished
crime. Reform movements with regard to imprisonment for debt and the
improvement of the condition of prisons, temperance movements,
improvements in the administration of the public schools, and the
increase in the number of high-schools were all indicative of the
fact that this new democracy was not unresponsive to ideals. Among
the New England element of western New York, as has already been
pointed out, there arose some of the most interesting religious and
political movements of the period, such as Mormonism, Spiritualism,
and Antimasonry. The Presbyterians and Baptists found a sympathetic
constituency in the new regions. It is easy to see that the traits
of these western counties of the middle states were such that
idealistic political movements, as antislavery, would find in them
effective support.

Obviously, the political traits of this section would have a
significance proportionate to the power of its population and
resources. On the whole, the middle region was the most democratic
section of the seaboard, but it was managed by the politicians under
a system of political bargaining for the spoils of office. The old
ascendancy which the great families exercised over New York politics
[Footnote: Becker, "Nominations in Colonial New York" (Am. Hist.
Rev., VI., 261).] was on the wane. The rise of the western half of
the state diminished the influence of the successors to the
patroons; but, nevertheless, family power continued to make itself
felt, and a group of new men arose, around whom factions formed and
dissolved in a kaleidoscope of political change.

During the colonial period, executive patronage and land grants had
been used to promote the interests of the men in power, and the
reaction against executive corruption resulted in a provision in New
York's constitution of 1777 whereby the executive was limited by the
Council of Appointment. The state was divided into four districts,
and one senator from each was selected by the House of
Representatives to serve in this council. [Footnote: Fish, Civil
Service, 87.] By 1821 the council appointed 8287 military officers
and 6663 civil officers. Nearly all the state officers, all the
mayors, militia officers, and justices of the peace fell under its
control.[Footnote: Hammond, Political Parties in N.Y., II., 65.]
This concentration of the appointive power in the hands of the
dominant faction brought the system of rotation in office, and the
doctrine that to the victors belong the spoils of war, to a climax.
It led to the building up of political machines by the use of
offices, from the lowest to the highest, as the currency for
political trading. The governor was checked, but the leaders of the
party in power held despotic control over the offices of the state.

This bargaining was facilitated by the extension of the system of
nominating conventions. From the local units of town and county
upwards, the custom of sending delegates to conventions had early
developed in the state. It had become a settled practice for the
representatives of one local unit to agree with those of another
regarding the order in which their favorite sons should receive
office. Town bargained with town, county with county, district with
district. In place of the system of control by the established
classes, New York's democracy was learning to elaborate the
machinery of nomination by the people; but in the process there was
developed a race of managing politicians, and the campaigns tended
to become struggles between personal elements for power rather than
contests on political issues.

The finished product of New York politics is shown in Van Buren, the
devotee of "regularity" in party and the adroit manager of its
machinery. Shrewdness, tact, and self-reliant judgment, urbane good-
humor, mingled with a suspicious and half-cynical expression, were
written on his face. "Little Van" was an affable, firm, and crafty
politician. Although he was not a creative statesman, neither was he
a mere schemer. He had definite ideas, if not convictions, of the
proper lines of policy, and was able to state them with incisive and
forcible argument when occasion demanded. To him, perhaps, more than
to any other of the politicians, fell the task of organizing the
campaign of Crawford, and afterwards of making the political
combinations that brought in the reign of Andrew Jackson. He was the
leader of that element of New York politics known as the Bucktails,
from the emblem worn by the Tammany Society. Clinton, his opponent,
exercised an influence somewhat akin to the Livingstons, the
Schuylers, the Van Rensselaers, and the other great family leaders
in the baronial days of New York politics. Brusque, arrogant, and
ambitious, he combined the petty enmities of a domineering
politician with flashes of statesman-like insight, and he crushed
his way to success by an exterminating warfare against his enemies.
Around him gathered a personal following embracing one wing of the
Republicans, aided by a large fraction of the old Federal party. For
the most part, his strength lay along the line of the Erie Canal and
in the regions where the New England element was strong.

About these New York rivals were grouped many lesser lights, for the
political organization tended to create a multitude of able
political leaders, many of them capable of holding high position,
but few of them swayed by compelling ideas or policies.

In Pennsylvania, where the spoils system and the nominating
convention developed contemporaneously with the movement in New
York, there were even fewer men of the highest political rank.
Gallatin's effective career belongs to an earlier period, and he had
no successor, as a national figure, among the Pennsylvania party


THE SOUTH (1820-1830)

In the decade which forms the subject of this volume, no section
underwent more far-reaching changes than did the group of South
Atlantic states made up of Maryland, Virginia, the Carolinas, and
Georgia, with which this chapter will deal under the name of the
south. Then it was that the south came to appreciate the effect of
the westward spread of the cotton-plant upon slavery and politics.
The invention of the cotton-gin by Eli Whitney, [Footnote: Am. Hist.
Review, III., 99.] in 1793, made possible the profitable cultivation
of the short-staple variety of cotton. Before this, the labor of
taking the seeds by hand from this variety, the only one suited to
production in the uplands, had prevented its use; thereafter, it was
only a question of time when the cotton area, no longer limited to
the tidewater region, would extend to the interior, carrying slavery
with it. This invention came at an opportune time. Already the
inventions of Arkwright, Hargreaves, and Cartwright had worked a
revolution in the textile industries of England, by means of the
spinning-jenny, the power-loom, and the factory system, furnishing
machinery for the manufacture of cotton beyond the world's
supply.[Footnote: M. B. Hammond, Cotton Industry, chaps, i., ii.;
Von Halle, "Baumwollproduktion," in Schmoller, Staats und Social-
wissenschaftliche Forschungen, XV.] Under the stimulus of this
demand for cotton, year by year the area of slavery extended towards
the west. In the twenties, some of the southern counties of Virginia
were attempting its cultivation; [Footnote: Va. Const. Conv.,
Debates (1829-1830), 333, 336; Martin, Gazetteer of Va. and D. C.
(1836), 99.] interior counties of North Carolina were combining
cotton-raising with their old industries; in South Carolina the area
of cotton and slavery had extended up the rivers well beyond the
middle of the state; [Footnote: Schaper, "Sectionalism and
Representation in S. C.," in Am. Hist. Assoc. Report, 1900, I., 387-
393.] while in Georgia the cotton planters, so long restrained by
the Indian line, broke through the barriers and spread over the
newly ceded lands. [Footnote: Phillips, "Georgia and State Rights,"
in Ibid., 1901, II. 140 (map).] The accompanying table shows the
progress of this crop: It is evident from the figures that tidewater
South Carolina and Georgia produced practically all of the cotton
crop in 1791, when the total was but two million pounds. By 1821 the
old south produced one hundred and seventeen million pounds, and,
five years later, one hundred and eighty millions. But how rapidly
in these five years the recently settled southwest was overtaking
the older section cotton crop (in million pounds)[Footnote: Based on
MacGregor, Commercial Statistics, 462; cf. De Bow's Review, XVII.,
428; Von Halle, Baumwollproduktion, 169; Secretary of Treasury,
Report, 1855-1856, p. 116. There are discrepancies; the figures are
to be taken as illustrative rather than exact; e.g., De Bow gives
seventy million pounds for Mississippi in 1826.] [Table omitted] is
shown by its total of over one hundred and fifty millions. By 1834
the southwest had distanced the older section. What had occurred was
a repeated westward movement: the cotton-plant first spread from the
sea-coast to the uplands, and then, by the beginning of our period,
advanced to the Gulf plains, until that region achieved supremacy in
its production.

How deeply the section was interested in this crop, and how
influential it was in the commerce of the United States, appears
from the fact that, in 1820, the domestic exports of South Carolina
and Georgia amounted to $15,215,000, while the value of the whole
domestic exports for all the rest of the United States was
$36,468,000. [Footnote: Pitkin, Statistical View (ed. of 1835), p.
57.] This, however, inadequately represents the value of the exports
from these two cotton states, because a large fraction of the cotton
was carried by the coastwise trade to northern ports and appeared in
their shipments. Senator William Smith, of South Carolina, estimated
that in 1818 the real exports of South Carolina and Georgia amounted
to "more than half as much as that of the other states of the Union,
including the vast and fertile valley of the Mississippi." The
average annual amount of the exports of cotton, tobacco, and rice
from the United States between 1821 and 1830 was about thirty-three
million dollars, while all other domestic exports made a sum of but
twenty million dollars. [Footnote: Ibid., 518.] Even greater than
New England's interest in the carrying-trade was the interest of the
south in the exchange of her great staples in the markets of Europe.

Never in history, perhaps, was an economic force more influential
upon the life of a people. As the production of cotton increased,
the price fell, and the seaboard south, feeling the competition of
the virgin soils of the southwest, saw in the protective tariff for
the development of northern manufactures the real source of her
distress. The price of cotton was in these years a barometer of
southern prosperity and of southern discontent. [Footnote: See chap,
xix., below; M. B. Hammond, Cotton Industry, part i., App. i.;
Donnell, Hist. of Cotton; Watkins, Production and Prices of Cotton.]

Even more important than the effect of cotton production upon the
prosperity of the south was its effect upon her social system. This
economic transformation resuscitated slavery from a moribund
condition to a vigorous and aggressive life. Slowly Virginia and
North Carolina came to realize that the burden and expense of
slavery as the labor system for their outworn tobacco and corn
fields was partly counteracted by the demand for their surplus
Negroes in the cotton-fields of their more southern neighbors. When
the lower south accepted the system as the basis of its prosperity
and its society, the tendency in the states of the upper south,
except in the pine barrens and the hill country, to look upon the
institution as a heritage to be reluctantly and apologetically
accepted grew fainter. The efforts to find some mode of removing the
Negro from their midst gradually came to an end, and they adjusted
themselves to slavery as a permanent system. Meanwhile, South
Carolina and Georgia found in the institution the source of their
economic well-being and hotly challenged the right of other sections
to speak ill of it or meddle with it in any way, lest their domestic
security be endangered. [Footnote: See Hart, Slavery and Abolition
(Am. Nation, XVI.)] When the south became fully conscious that
slavery set the section apart from the rest of the nation, when it
saw in nationalizing legislation, such as protection to manufactures
and the construction of a system of internal improvements, the
efforts of other sections to deprive the cotton states of their
profits for the benefit of an industrial development in which they
did not share, deep discontent prevailed. With but slight
intermission from the days of Washington to those of Monroe, the
tobacco planters under the Virginia dynasty had ruled the nation.
But now, when the center of power within the section passed from the
weakening hands of Virginia to those of South Carolina, the
aggressive leader of the Cotton Kingdom, the south found itself a
minority section in the Union. When it realized this, it denied the
right of the majority to rule, and proceeded to elaborate a system
of minority rights as a protection against the forces of national
development, believing that these forces threatened the foundations
of the prosperity and even the social safety of the south.

From the middle of the eighteenth century the seaboard planters had
been learning the lesson of control by a fraction of the population.
The south was by no means a unified region in its physiography. The
Blue Ridge cut off the low country of Virginia from the Shenandoah
Valley, and beyond this valley the Alleghenies separated the rest of
the state from those counties which we now know as West Virginia. By
the time of the Revolution, in the Carolinas and Georgia, a belt of
pine barrens, skirting the "fall line" from fifty to one hundred
miles from the coast, divided the region of tidewater planters of
these states from the small farmers of the up-country. This
population of the interior had entered the region in the course of
the second half of the eighteenth century. Scotch-Irishmen and
Germans passed down the Great Valley from Pennsylvania into
Virginia, and through the gaps in the Blue Ridge out to the Piedmont
region of the Carolinas, while contemporaneously other streams from
Charleston advanced to meet them. [Footnote: Bassett, in Am. Hist.
Assoc., Report 1894, p. 141; Schaper, ibid., 1900, I., 317;
Phillips, ibid., 1901, II., 88.] Thus, at the close of the
eighteenth century, the south was divided into two areas presenting
contrasted types of civilization. On the one side were the planters,
raising their staple crops of tobacco, rice, and indigo, together
with some cultivation of the cereals. To this region belonged the
slaves. On the other side was this area of small farmers, raising
livestock, wheat, and corn under the same conditions of pioneer
farming as characterized the interior of Pennsylvania.

From the second half of the eighteenth century down to the time with
which this volume deals, there was a persistent struggle between the
planters of the coast, who controlled the wealth of the region, and
the free farmers of the interior of Maryland, Virginia, the
Carolinas, and Georgia. The tidewater counties retained the
political power which they already possessed before this tide of
settlement flowed into the back-country. Refusing in most of these
states to reapportion on the basis of numbers, they protected their
slaves and their wealth against the dangers of a democracy
interested in internal improvements and capable of imposing a tax
upon slave property in order to promote their ends. In Virginia, in
1825, for example, the western men complained that twenty counties
in the upper country, with over two hundred and twenty thousand free
white inhabitants, had no more weight in the government than twenty
counties on tidewater, containing only about fifty thousand; that
the six smallest counties in the state, compared with the six
largest, enjoyed nearly ten times as much political power.
[Footnote: Alexandria Herald, June 13, 1825.] To the gentlemen
planters of the seaboard, the idea of falling under the control of
the farmers of the interior of the south seemed intolerable.

It was only as slavery spread into the uplands, with the cultivation
of cotton, that the lowlands began to concede and to permit an
increased power in the legislatures to the sections most nearly
assimilated to the seaboard type. South Carolina achieved this end
in 1808 by the plan of giving to the seaboard the control of one
house, while the interior held the other; but it is to be noted that
this concession was not made until slavery had pushed so far up the
river-courses that the reapportionment preserved the control in the
hands of slave-holding counties. [Footnote: Calhoun, Works, I., 401;
Schaper, Sectionalism and Representation in S. C., in Am. Hist.
Assoc., Report 1900, I., 434-437.] A similar course was followed by
Virginia in the convention of 1829-1830, when, after a long
struggle, a compromise was adopted, by which the balance of power in
the state legislature was transferred to the counties of the
Piedmont and the Valley. [Footnote: Va. Const. Conv., Debates (1829-
1830); Chandler, Representation in Va., in Johns Hopkins Univ.
Studies, XIV., 286-298.] Here slave-holding had progressed so far
that the interest of those counties was affiliated rather with the
coast than with the trans-Allegheny country. West Virginia remained
a discontented area until her independent statehood in the days of
the Civil War. These transmontane counties of Virginia were, in
their political activity during our period, rather to be reckoned
with the west than with the south. Thus the southern seaboard
experienced the need of protecting the interests of its slave-
holding planters against the free democracy of the interior of the
south itself, and learned how to safeguard the minority. This
experience was now to serve the south, when, having attained unity
by the spread of slavery into the interior, it found itself as a
section in the same relation to the Union which the slave-holding
tidewater area had held towards the more populous up-country of the

The unification of the section is one of the most important features
of the period. Not only had the south been divided into opposing
areas, as we have seen, but even its population was far from
homogeneous. By the period of this volume, however, English, French-
Huguenots, Scotch-Irish, and Germans had become assimilated into one
people, and the Negroes, who in 1830 in the South Atlantic states
numbered over a million and a half in a white population of not much
over two millions, were diffusing themselves throughout the area of
the section except in West Virginia and the mountains.
Contemporaneously the pioneer farming type of the interior of the
section was replaced by the planter type. [Footnote: Niles'
Register, XXI., 132; cf. p. 55 below.] As cotton-planting and slave-
holding advanced into the interior counties of the old southern
states, the free farmers were obliged either to change to the
plantation economy and buy slaves, or to sell their lands and
migrate. Large numbers of them, particularly in the Carolinas, were
Quakers or Baptists, whose religious scruples combined with their
agricultural habits to make this change obnoxious. This upland
country, too distant from the sea-shore to permit a satisfactory
market, was a hive from which pioneers earlier passed into Kentucky
and Tennessee, until those states had become populous commonwealths.
Now the exodus was increased by this later colonization.[Footnote:
See chap. v. below.] The Ohio was crossed, the Mississippi-Missouri
ascended, and the streams that flowed to the Gulf were followed by
movers away from the regions that were undergoing this social and
economic reconstruction. This industrial revolution was effective in
different degrees in the different states. Comparatively few of
Virginia's slaves, which by 1830 numbered nearly half a million,
were found in her trans-Allegheny counties, but the Shenandoah
Valley was receiving slaves and changing to the plantation type. In
North Carolina the slave population of nearly two hundred and fifty
thousand, at the same date, had spread well into the interior, but
cotton did not achieve the position there which it held farther
south. The interior farmers worked small farms of wheat and corn,
laboring side by side with their Negro slaves in the fields.
[Footnote: Bassett, Slavery in N. C., in Johns Hopkins Univ.
Studies, XVII., 324, 399.] South Carolina had over three hundred
thousand slaves-more than a majority of her population--and the
black belt extended to the interior. Georgia's slaves, amounting to
over two hundred thousand, somewhat less than half her population,
steadily advanced from the coast and the Savannah River towards the
cotton-lands of the interior, pushing before them the less
prosperous farmers, who found new homes to the north or south of the
cotton-belt or migrated to the southwestern frontier.[Footnote:
Phillips, Georgia and State Rights, in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report
1901, II., 106.] Here, as in North Carolina, the planters in the
interior of the state frequently followed the plough or encouraged
their slaves by wielding the hoe. [Footnote: Phillips, Georgia and
State Rights, in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1901, II., 107.] Thus this
process of economic transformation passed from the coast towards the
mountain barrier, gradually eliminating the inharmonious elements
and steadily tending to produce a solidarity of interests. The south
as a whole was becoming, for the first time since colonial days, a
staple-producing region; and, as diversified farming declined, the
region tended to become dependent for its supplies of meat products,
horses, and mules, and even hay and cereals, upon the north and

The westward migration of its people checked the growth of the
south. It had colonized the new west at the same time that the
middle region had been rapidly growing in population, and the result
was that the proud states of the southern seaboard were reduced to
numerical inferiority. Like New England, it was an almost stationary
section. Prom 1820 to 1830 the states of this group gained little
more than half a million souls, hardly more than the increase of the
single state of New York. Virginia, with a population of over a
million, increased but 13.7 per cent., and the Carolinas only 15.5
per cent. In the next decade these tendencies were even more clearly
shown, for Virginia and the Carolinas then gained but little more
than 2 per cent.

Georgia alone showed rapid increase. At the beginning of the decade
the Indians still held all of the territory west of Macon, at the
center of the state, with the exception of two tiers of counties
along the southern border; and, when these lands were opened towards
the close of the decade, they were occupied by a rush of settlement
similar to the occupation of Oklahoma and Indian Territory in our
own day. What Maine was to New England, that Georgia was to the
southern seaboard, with the difference that it was deeply touched by
influences characteristically western. Because of the traits of her
leaders, and the rude, aggressive policy of her people, Georgia
belonged at least as much to the west as to the south. From colonial
times the Georgia settlers had been engaged in an almost incessant
struggle against the savages on her border, and had the instincts of
a frontier society. [Footnote: Ibid., II., 88; Longstreet, Georgia
Scenes; Gilmer, Sketches; Miss. Hist. Soc., Publications, VIII.,

From 1800 to 1830, throughout the tidewater region, there were clear
evidences of decline. As the movement of capital and population
towards the interior went on, wealth was drained from the coast;
and, as time passed, the competition of the fertile and low-priced
lands of the Gulf basin proved too strong for the outworn lands even
of the interior of the south. Under the wasteful system of tobacco
and cotton culture, without replenishment of the soil, the staple
areas would, in any case, have declined in value. Even the corn and
wheat lands were exhausted by unscientific farming. [Footnote:
Gooch, Prize Essay on Agriculture in Va., in Lynchburg Virginian,
July 4, 1833; Martin, Gazetteer of Va., 99, 100.] Writing in 1814 to
Josiah Quincy, [Footnote: E Quincy, Josiah Quincy, 353.] John
Randolph of Roanoke lamented the decline of the seaboard planters.
He declared that the region was now sunk in obscurity: what
enterprise or capital there was in the country had retired westward;
deer and wild turkeys were not so plentiful anywhere in Kentucky as
near the site of the ancient Virginia capital, Williamsburg. In the
Virginia convention of 1829, Mr. Mercer estimated that in 1817 land
values in Virginia aggregated two hundred and six million dollars,
and Negroes averaged three hundred dollars, while in 1829 the land
values did not surpass ninety millions, and slaves had fallen in
value to one hundred and fifty dollars. [Footnote: Va. Const. Conv.,
Debates (1829-1830), 178; Collins, Domestic Slave Trade, 26.]

In a speech in the Virginia House of Delegates, in 1832, Thomas
Marshall [Footnote: Collins, Domestic Slave Trade, 24, cited from
Richmond Enquirer, February, 2, 1832.] asserted that the whole
agricultural product of Virginia did not exceed in value the exports
of eighty or ninety years before, when it contained not one-sixth of
the population. In his judgment, the greater proportion of the
larger plantations, with from fifty to one hundred slaves, brought
the proprietors into debt, and rarely did a plantation yield one and
a half per cent. profit on the capital. So great had become the
depression that Randolph prophesied that the time was coming when
the masters would run away from the slaves and be advertised by them
in the public papers. [Footnote: Collins, Domestic Slave Trade, 26.]

It was in this period that Thomas Jefferson fell into such financial
embarrassments that he was obliged to request of the legislature of
Virginia permission to dispose of property by lottery to pay his
debts, and that a subscription was taken up to relieve his distress.
[Footnote: Randall, Jefferson, III., 527, 561.] At the same time,
Madison, having vainly tried to get a loan from the United States
Bank, was forced to dispose of some of his lands and stocks;
[Footnote: Hunt, Madison, 380.] and Monroe, at the close of his term
of office, found himself financially ruined. He gave up Oak Hill and
spent his declining years with his son-in-law in New York City. The
old-time tide-water mansions, where, in an earlier day, everybody
kept open house, gradually fell into decay.

Sad indeed was the spectacle of Virginia's ancient aristocracy. It
had never been a luxurious society. The very wealthy planters, with
vast cultivated estates and pretentious homes, were in the minority.
For the most part, the houses were moderate frame structures, set at
intervals of a mile or so apart, often in park like grounds, with
long avenues of trees. The plantation was a little world in itself.

Here was made much of the clothing for the slaves, and the mistress
of the plantation supervised the spinning and weaving. Leather was
tanned on the place, and blacksmithing, wood-working, and other
industries were carried on, often under the direction of white
mechanics. The planter and his wife commonly had the care of the
black families whom they possessed, looked after them when they were
sick, saw to their daily rations, arranged marriages, and determined
the daily tasks of the plantation. The abundant hospitality between
neighbors gave opportunity for social cultivation, and politics was
a favorite subject of conversation.

The leading planters served as justices of the peace, but they were
not dependent for their selection upon the popular vote. Appointed
by the governor on nomination of the court itself, they constituted
a kind of close corporation, exercising local judicial, legislative,
and executive functions. The sheriff was appointed by the governor
from three justices of the peace recommended by the court, and the
court itself appointed the county clerk. Thus the county government
of Virginia was distinctly aristocratic. County-court day served as
an opportunity for bringing together the freeholders, who included
not only the larger planters, but the small farmers and the poor
whites--hangers-on of the greater plantations. Almost no large
cities were found in Virginia. The court-house was hardly more than
a meeting-place for the rural population. Here farmers exchanged
their goods, traded horses, often fought, and listened to the stump
speeches of the orators. [Footnote: Johnson, Robert Lewis Dabney,
14-24; Smedes, A Southern Planter, 34-37.]

Such were, in the main, the characteristics of that homespun
plantation aristocracy which, through the Virginia dynasty, had
ruled the nation in the days of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, and
Monroe. As their lands declined in value, they naturally sought for
an explanation and a remedy. [Footnote: Randall, Jefferson, III.,
532.] The explanation was found most commonly in the charge that the
protective tariff was destroying the prosperity of the south; and in
reaction they turned to demand the old days of Jeffersonian rural
simplicity, under the guardianship of state rights and a strict
construction of the Constitution. Madison in vain laid the fall in
land values in Virginia to the uncertainty and low prices of the
crops, to the quantity of land thrown on the market, and the
attractions of the cheaper and better lands beyond the mountains.
[Footnote: Madison, Writings (ed. of 1865), III., 614.]

Others called attention to the fact that the semi-annual migration
towards the west and southwest, which swept off enterprising
portions of the people and much of the capital and movable property
of the state, also kept down the price of land by the great
quantities thereby thrown into the market. Instead of applying a
system of scientific farming and replenishment of the soil, there
was a tendency for the planters who remained to get into debt in
order to add to their possessions the farms which were offered for
sale by the movers. Thus there was a flow of wealth towards the west
to pay for these new purchases. The overgrown plantations soon began
to look tattered and almost desolate. "Galled and gullied hill-sides
and sedgy, briary fields" [Footnote: Lynchburg Virginian, July 4,
1833.] showed themselves in every direction. Finally the planter
found himself obliged to part with some of his slaves, in response
to the demand from the new cotton-fields; or to migrate himself,
with his caravan of Negroes, to open a new home in the Gulf region.
During the period of this survey the price for prime field-hands in
Georgia averaged a little over seven hundred dollars. [Footnote:
Phillips, in Pol. Sci. Quart., XX., 267.] If the estimate of one
hundred and fifty dollars for Negroes sold in family lots in
Virginia is correct, it is clear that economic laws would bring
about a condition where Virginia's resources would in part depend
upon her supply of slaves to the cotton-belt. [Footnote: Collins,
Domestic Slave Trade, 42-46.] It is clear, also, that the Old
Dominion had passed the apogee of her political power.

It was not only the planters of Virginia that suffered in this
period of change. As the more extensive and fertile cotton-fields of
the new states of the southwest opened, North Carolina and even
South Carolina found themselves embarrassed. With the fall in cotton
prices, already mentioned, it became increasingly necessary to
possess the advantages of large estates and unexhausted soils, in
order to extract a profit from this cultivation. From South Carolina
there came a protest more vehement and aggressive than that of the
discontented classes of Virginia. Already the indigo plantation had
ceased to be profitable and the rice planters no longer held their
old prosperity.

Charleston was peculiarly suited to lead in a movement of revolt. It
was the one important center of real city life of the seaboard south
of Baltimore. Here every February the planters gathered from their
plantations, thirty to one hundred and fifty miles away, for a month
in their town houses. At this season, races, social gayeties, and
political conferences vied with one another in engaging the
attention of the planters. Returning to their plantations in the
early spring, they remained until June, when considerations of
health compelled them either again to return to the city, to visit
the mountains, or to go to such watering-places as Saratoga in New
York. Here again they talked politics and mingled with political
leaders of the north. It was not until the fall that they were able
to return again to their estates. [Footnote: Hodgson, Letters from
North America, I.,50.] Thus South Carolina, affording a combination
of plantation life with the social intercourse of the city, gave
peculiar opportunities for exchanging ideas and consolidating the
sentiment of her leaders.

The condition of South Carolina was doubtless exaggerated by Hayne,
in his speech in the Senate in 1832, when he characterized it as
"not merely one of unexampled depression, but of great and all-
pervading distress," with "the mournful evidence of premature
decay," "merchants bankrupt or driven away--their capital sunk or
transferred to other pursuits--our shipyards broken up--our ships
all sold!" "If," said he, "we fly from the city to the country, what
do we there behold? Fields abandoned; the hospitable mansions of our
fathers deserted; agriculture drooping; our slaves, like their
masters, working harder, and faring worse; the planter striving with
unavailing efforts to avert the ruin which is before him." He drew a
sad picture of the once thriving planter, reduced to despair,
gathering up the small remnants of his broken fortune, and, with his
wife and little ones, tearing himself from the scenes of his
childhood and the bones of his ancestors to seek in the wilderness
the reward for his industry of which the policy of Congress had
deprived him. [Footnote: Register of Debates, VIII., pt. i., 80; cf.
Houston, Nullification in S.C., 46; McDuffie, in Register of
Debates, 18th Cong., 2 Sess., 253.]

The genius of the south expressed itself most clearly in the field
of politics. If the democratic middle region could show a multitude
of clever politicians, the aristocratic south possessed an abundance
of leaders bold in political initiative and masterful in their
ability to use the talents of their northern allies. When the
Missouri question was debated, John Quincy Adams remarked "that if
institutions are to be judged by their results in the composition of
the councils of this Union, the slave-holders are much more ably
represented than the simple freemen." [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs,
IV., 506.]

The southern statesmen fall into two classes. On the one side was
the Virginia group, now for the most part old men, rich in the
honors of the nation, still influential, but, except for Monroe, no
longer directing party policy. Jefferson and Madison were in
retirement in their old age; Marshall, as chief-justice, was
continuing his career as the expounder of the Constitution in
accordance with Federalist ideals; John Randolph, his old
eccentricities increased by disease and intemperance, remained to
proclaim the extreme doctrines of southern dissent and to impale his
adversaries with javelins of flashing wit. A maker of phrases which
stung and festered, he was still capable of influencing public
opinion somewhat in the same way as are the cartoonists of modern
times. But "his course through life had been like that of the arrow
which Alcestes shot to heaven, which effected nothing useful, though
it left a long stream of light behind it." [Footnote: Lynchburg
Virginian, May 9, 1833.] In North Carolina, the venerable Macon
remained to protest like a later Cato against the tendencies of the
times and to raise a warning voice to his fellow slave-holders
against national consolidation.

In the course of this decade, the effective leadership of the south
fell to Calhoun and Crawford. [Footnote: See chap. xi. below.] About
these statesmen were grouped energetic and able men like Hayne,
McDuffie, and Hamilton of South Carolina, and Cobb and Forsyth of
Georgia--men who sometimes pushed their leaders on in a sectional
path which the latter's caution or personal ambitions made them
reluctant to tread. Nor must it be forgotten that early in the
decade the south lost two of her greatest statesmen, the wise and
moderate Lowndes, of South Carolina, and Pinkney, the brilliant
Maryland orator. In the course of the ten years which we are to
sketch, the influence of economic change within this section
transformed the South Carolinians from warm supporters of a liberal
national policy into the straightest of the sect of state-
sovereignty advocates, intent upon raising barriers against the
flood of nationalism that threatened to overwhelm the south. In
relating the changing policy of the southern political leaders, we
shall again observe the progress and the effects of the economic
transformations which it has been the purpose of this chapter to



The rise of the new west was the most significant fact in American
history in the years immediately following the War of 1812. Ever
since the beginnings of colonization on the Atlantic coast a
frontier of settlement had advanced, cutting into the forest,
pushing back the Indian, and steadily widening the area of
civilization in its rear. [Footnote: Three articles by F.J. Turner,
viz.: "Significance of the Frontier in American History," in Am.
Hist. Assoc., Report 1893, 199-227; "Problem of the West," in
"Atlantic Monthly, LXXVIII, 289; "Contributions of the West to
American Democracy, ibid, XCI., 83.] There had been a west even in
early colonial days; but then it lay close to the coast. By the
middle of the eighteenth century the west was to be found beyond
tide-water, advancing towards the Allegheny Mountains. When this
barrier was crossed and the lands on the other side of the mountains
were won, in the days of the Revolution, a new and greater west,
more influential on the nation's destiny, was created. [Footnote:
Howard, Preliminaries of Revolution, chap. xiii.; Van Tyne, Am.
Revolution, chap. xv.; McLaughlin, Confederation and Constitution,
chap. viii. (Am. Nation, VIII., IX., X.).]

The men of the "Western Waters" or the "Western World," as they
loved to call themselves, developed under conditions of separation
from the older settlements and from Europe. The lands, practically
free, in this vast area not only attracted the settler, but
furnished opportunity for all men to hew out their own careers. The
wilderness ever opened a gate of escape to the poor, the
discontented, and the oppressed. If social conditions tended to
crystallize in the east, beyond the Alleghenies there was freedom.
Grappling with new problems, under these conditions, the society
that spread into this region developed inventiveness and
resourcefulness; the restraints of custom were broken, and new
activities, new lines of growth, new institutions were produced. Mr.
Bryce has well declared that "the West is the most American part of
America.... What Europe is to Asia, what England is to the rest of
Europe, what America is to England, that the Western States and
Territories are to the Atlantic States." [Footnote: Bryce, American
Commonwealth (ed. of 1895), II., 830.] The American spirit--the
traits that have come to be recognized as the most characteristic--
was developed in the new commonwealths that sprang into life beyond
the seaboard. In these new western lands Americans achieved a
boldness of conception of the country's destiny and democracy. The
ideal of the west was its emphasis upon the worth and possibilities
of the common man, its belief in the right of every man to rise to
the full measure of his own nature, under conditions of social
mobility. Western democracy was no theorist's dream. It came, stark
and strong and full of life, from the American forest. [Footnote: P.
J. Turner, "Contributions of the West to American Democracy," in
Atlantic Monthly, XCL, 83, and "The Middle West," in International
Monthly, IV., 794.]

The time had now come when this section was to make itself felt as a
dominant force in American life. Already it had shown its influence
upon the older sections. By its competition, by its attractions for
settlers, it reacted on the east and gave added impulse to the
democratic movement in New England and New York. The struggle of
Baltimore, New York City, and Philadelphia for the rising commerce
of the interior was a potent factor in the development of the middle
region. In the south the spread of the cotton-plant and the new form
which slavery took were phases of the westward movement of the
plantation. The discontent of the old south is partly explained by
the migration of her citizens to the west and by the competition of
her colonists in the lands beyond the Alleghenies. The future of the
south lay in its affiliation to the Cotton Kingdom of the lower
states which were rising on the plains of the Gulf of Mexico.

Rightly to understand the power which the new west was to exert upon
the economic and political life of the nation in the years between
1820 and 1830, it is necessary to consider somewhat fully the
statistics of growth in western population and industry.

The western states ranked with the middle region and the south in
respect to population. Between 1812 and 1821 six new western
commonwealths were added to the Union: Louisiana (1812), Indiana
(1816), Mississippi (1817), Illinois (1818), Alabama (1819), and
Missouri (1821). In the decade from 1820 to 1830, these states, with
their older sisters, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Ohio, increased their
population from 2,217,000 to nearly 3,700,000, a gain of about a
million and a half in the decade. The percentages of increase in
these new communities tell a striking story. Even the older states
of the group grew steadily. Kentucky, with 22 per cent., Louisiana,
with 41, and Tennessee and Ohio, each with 61, were increasing much
faster than New England and the south, outside of Maine and Georgia.
But for the newer communities the percentages of gain are still more
significant: Mississippi, 81 per cent.; Alabama, 142; Indiana, 133;
and Illinois, 185. The population of Ohio, which hardly more than a
generation before was "fresh, untouched, unbounded, magnificent
wilderness," [Footnote: Webster, Writings (National ed.), V., 252.]
was now nearly a million, surpassing the combined population of
Massachusetts and Connecticut.

A new section had arisen and was growing at such a rate that a
description of it in any single year would be falsified before it
could be published. Nor is the whole strength of the western element
revealed by these figures. In order to estimate the weight of the
western population in 1830, we must add six hundred thousand souls
in the western half of New York, three hundred thousand in the
interior counties of Pennsylvania, and over two hundred thousand in
the trans-Allegheny counties of Virginia, making an aggregate of
four million six hundred thousand. Fully to reckon the forces of
backwoods democracy, moreover, we should include a large fraction of
the interior population of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont, North
Carolina, and Georgia, and northern New York. All of these regions
were to be influenced by the ideals of democratic rule which were
springing up in the Mississippi Valley.

In voting-power the western states alone--to say nothing of the
interior districts of the older states--were even more important
than the figures for population indicate. The west itself had, under
the apportionment of 1822, forty-seven out of the two hundred and
thirteen members of the House of Representatives, while in the
Senate its representation was eighteen out of forty-eight--more than
that of any other section. Clearly, here was a region to be reckoned
with; its economic interests, its ideals, and its political leaders
were certain to have a powerful, if not a controlling, voice in the
councils of the nation.

At the close of the War of 1812 the west had much homogeneity. Parts
of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Ohio had been settled so many years that
they no longer presented typical western conditions; but in most of
its area the west then was occupied by pioneer farmers and stock-
raisers, eking out their larder and getting peltries by hunting, and
raising only a small surplus for market. By 1830, however,
industrial differentiation between the northern and southern
portions of the Mississippi Valley was clearly marked. The northwest
was changing to a land of farmers and town-builders, anxious for a
market for their grain and cattle; while the southwest was becoming
increasingly a cotton-raising section, swayed by the same impulses
in respect to staple exports as those which governed the southern
seaboard. Economically, the northern portion of the valley tended to
connect itself with the middle states, while the southern portion
came into increasingly intimate connection with the south.
Nevertheless, it would be a radical mistake not to deal with the
west as a separate region, for, with all these differences within
itself, it possessed a fundamental unity in its social structure and
its democratic ideals, and at times, in no uncertain way, it showed
a consciousness of its separate existence.

In occupying the Mississippi Valley the American people colonized a
region far surpassing in area the territory of the old thirteen
states. The movement was, indeed, but the continuation of the
advance of the frontier which had begun in the earliest days of
American colonization. The existence of a great body of land,
offered at so low a price as to be practically free, inevitably drew
population towards the west. When wild lands sold for two dollars an
acre, and, indeed, could be occupied by squatters almost without
molestation, it was certain that settlers would seek them instead of
paying twenty to fifty dollars an acre for farms that lay not much
farther to the east--particularly when the western lands were more
fertile. The introduction of the steamboat on the western waters in
1811, moreover, soon revolutionized transportation conditions in the
West. [Footnote: Flint, Letters, 260; Monette, in Miss. Hist. Soc.,
Publications, VII., 503; Hall, Statistics of the West, 236, 247;
Lloyd, Steamboat Disasters (1853), 32, 40-45; Preble, Steam
Navigation, 64; McMaster, United States, IV., 402; Chittenden, Early
Steamboat Navigation on the Missouri, chap. ix.] At the beginning of
the period of which we are treating, steamers were ascending the
Mississippi and the Missouri, as well as the Ohio and its
tributaries. Between the close of the War of 1812 and 1830,
moreover, the Indian title was extinguished to vast regions in the
west. Half of Michigan was opened to settlement; the northwestern
quarter of Ohio was freed; in Indiana and Illinois (more than half
of which had been Indian country prior to 1816) all but a
comparatively small region of undesired prairie lands south of Lake
Michigan was ceded; almost the whole state of Missouri was freed
from its Indian title; and, in the Gulf region, at the close of the
decade, the Indians held but two isolated islands of territory, one
in western Georgia and eastern Alabama, and the other in northern
and central Mississippi. These ceded regions were the fruit of the
victories of William Henry Harrison in the northwest, and of Andrew
Jackson in the Gulf region. They were, in effect, conquered
provinces, just opened to colonization.

The maps of the United States census, giving the distribution of
population in 1810, 1820, and 1830, [Footnote: See maps of
population; compare U. S. Census of 1900, Statistical Atlas, plates
4, 5, 6.] exhibit clearly the effects of the defeat of the Indians,
and show the areas that were occupied in these years. In 1810
settlement beyond the mountains was almost limited to a zone along
the Ohio River and its tributaries, the Cumberland and the
Tennessee. In the southwest, the vicinity of Mobile showed sparse
settlement, chiefly survivals of the Spanish and English occupation;
and, along the fluvial lands of the eastern bank of the lower
Mississippi, in the Natchez region, as well as in the old province
of Louisiana, there was a considerable area occupied by planters.

By 1820 the effects of the War of 1812 and the rising tide of
westward migration became manifest. Pioneers spread along the river-
courses of the northwest well up to the Indian boundary. The zone of
settlement along the Ohio ascended the Missouri, in the rush to the
Boone's Lick country, towards the center of the present state. From
the settlements of middle Tennessee a pioneer farming area reached
southward to connect with the settlements of Mobile, and the latter
became conterminous with those of the lower Mississippi.

By 1830 large portions of these Indian lands, which were ceded
between 1817 and 1829, received the same type of colonization. The
unoccupied lands in Indiana and Illinois were prairie country, then
deemed unsuited for settlement because of the lack of wood and
drinking-water. It was the hardwoods that had been taken up in the
northwest, and, for the most part, the tracts a little back from the
unhealthful bottom-lands, but in close proximity to the rivers,
which were the only means of transportation before the building of
good roads. A new island of settlement appeared in the northwestern
portion of Illinois and the adjacent regions of Wisconsin and Iowa,
due to the opening of the lead-mines. Along the Missouri Valley and
in the Gulf region the areas possessed in 1820 increased in density
of population. Georgia spread her settlers into the Indian lands,
which she had so recently secured by threatening a rupture with the
United States. [Footnote: MacDonald, Jacksonian Democracy (Am.
Nation, XV.), chap. x. ]

Translated into terms of human activity, these shaded areas,
encroaching on the blank spaces of the map, meant much for the
history of the United States. Even in the northwest, which we shall
first describe, they represent, in the main, the migration of
southern people. New England, after the distress following the War
of 1812 and the hard winter of 1816-1817, had sent many settlers
into western New York and Ohio; the Western Reserve had increased in
population by the immigration, of Connecticut people; Pennsylvania
and New Jersey had sent colonists to southern and central Ohio, with
Cincinnati as the commercial center. In Ohio the settlers of middle-
state origin were decidedly more numerous than those from the south,
and New England's share was distinctly smaller than that of the
south. In the Ohio legislature in 1822 there were thirty-eight
members of middle-state birth, thirty-three of southern (including
Kentucky), and twenty-five of New England. But Kentucky and
Tennessee (now sufficiently settled to need larger and cheaper farms
for the rising generation), together with the up-country of the
south, contributed the mass of the pioneer colonists to most of the
Mississippi Valley prior to 1830. [Footnote: See, for Ohio, Niles'
Register, XXI., 368 (leg. session of 1822), and Nat. Republican,
January 2, 1824; for Illinois in 1833, Western Monthly Magazine, I.,
199; for Missouri convention of 1820, Niles' Register, XVIII., 400;
for Alabama in 1820, ibid., XX., 64. Local histories, travels,
newspapers, and the census of 1850 support the text.] Of course, a
large fraction of these came from the Scotch-Irish and German stock
that in the first half of the eighteenth century passed from
Pennsylvania along the Great Valley to the up-country of the south.
Indiana, so late as 1850, showed but ten thousand natives of New
England, and twice as many persons of southern as of middle states
origin. In the history of Indiana, North Carolina contributed a
large fraction of the population, giving to it its "Hoosier" as well
as much of its Quaker stock. Illinois in this period had but a
sprinkling of New-Englanders, engaged in business in the little
towns. The southern stock, including settlers from Kentucky and
Tennessee, was the preponderant class. The Illinois legislature for
1833 contained fifty-eight from the south (including Kentucky and
Tennessee), nineteen from the middle states, and only four from New
England. Missouri's population was chiefly Kentuckians and

The leaders of this southern element came, in considerable measure,
from well-to-do classes, who migrated to improve their conditions in
the freer opportunities of a new country. Land speculation, the
opportunity of political preferment, and the advantages which these
growing communities brought to practitioners of the law combined to
attract men of this class. Many of them, as we shall see, brought
their slaves with them, under the systems of indenture which made
this possible. Missouri, especially, was sought by planters with
their slaves. But it was the poorer whites, the more democratic,
non-slaveholding element of the south, which furnished the great
bulk of the settlers north of the Ohio. Prior to the close of the
decade the same farmer type was in possession of large parts of the
Gulf region, whither, through the whole of our period, the slave-
holding planters came in increasing numbers.

Two of the families which left Kentucky for the newer country in
these years will illustrate the movement. The Lincoln family
[Footnote: Tarbell, Lincoln, I., chaps, i.-iv.; Herndon, Lincoln,
I., chaps, i.-iv.; Nicolay and Hay, Lincoln, I., chaps, i.-iii.] had
reached that state by migration from the north with the stream of
backwoodsmen which bore along with it the Calhouns and the Boones.
Abraham Lincoln was born in a hilly, barren portion of Kentucky in
1809. In 1816, when Lincoln was a boy of seven, his father, a poor
carpenter, took his family across the Ohio on a raft, with a capital
consisting of his kit of tools and several hundred gallons of
whiskey. In Indiana he hewed a path into the forest to a new home in
the southern part of the state, where for a year the family lived in
a "half-faced camp," or open shed of poles, clearing their land. In
the hardships of the pioneer life Lincoln's mother died, as did many
another frontier woman. In 1830 Lincoln was a tall, strapping youth,
six feet four inches in height, able to sink his axe deeper than
other men into the opposing forest. At that time his father moved to
the Sangamon country of Illinois with the rush of land-seekers into
that new and popular region. Near the home of Lincoln in Kentucky
was born, in 1808, Jefferson Davis [Footnote: Mrs. Davis, Jefferson
Davis, I., 5.], whose father, shortly before the War of 1812, went
with the stream of southward movers to Louisiana and then to
Mississippi. Davis's brothers fought under Jackson in the War of
1812, and the family became typical planters of the Gulf region.

Meanwhile, the roads that led to the Ohio Valley were followed by an
increasing tide of settlers from the east. "Old America seems to be
breaking up, and moving westward," wrote Morris Birkbeck in 1817, as
he passed on the National Road through Pennsylvania. "We are seldom
out of sight, as we travel on this grand track, towards the Ohio, of
family groups, behind and before us. ... A small waggon (so light
that you might almost carry it, yet strong enough to bear a good
load of bedding, utensils and provisions, and a swarm of young
citizens,--and to sustain marvellous shocks in its passage over
these rocky heights) with two small horses; sometimes a cow or two,
comprises their all; excepting a little store of hard-earned cash
for the land office of the district; where they may obtain a title
for as many acres as they possess half-dollars, being one fourth of
the purchase-money. The waggon has a tilt, or cover, made of a
sheet, or perhaps a blanket. The family are seen before, behind, or
within the vehicle, according to the road or the weather, or perhaps
the spirits of the party. ... A cart and single horse frequently
affords the means of transfer, sometimes a horse and packsaddle.
Often the back of the poor pilgrim bears all his effects, and his
wife follows, naked-footed, bending under the hopes of the family."
[Footnote: Birkbeck, Notes on a Journey from Va. to Ill., 25, 26.]

The southerners who came by land along the many bad roads through
Tennessee and Kentucky usually traveled with heavy, long-bodied
wagons, drawn by four or six horses. [Footnote: Hist. of Grundy
County, Ill., 149.] These family groups, crowding roads and fords,
marching towards the sunset, with the canvas-covered wagon, ancestor
of the prairie-schooner of the later times, were typical of the
overland migration. The poorer classes traveled on foot, sometimes
carrying their entire effects in a cart drawn by themselves.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XXI., 320.] Those of more means took
horses, cattle, and sheep, and sometimes sent their household goods
by wagon or by steamboat up the Mississippi. [Footnote: Howells,
Life in Ohio, 1813-1840, 86; Jones, Ill. and the West, 31; Hist, of
Grundy County, Ill., 149.] The routes of travel to the western
country were numerous. [Footnote: See map, page 226.] Prior to the
opening of the Erie Canal the New England element either passed
along the Mohawk and the Genesee turnpike to Lake Erie, or crossed
the Hudson and followed the line of the Catskill turnpike to the
headwaters of the Allegheny, or, by way of Boston, took ship to New
York, Philadelphia, or Baltimore, in order to follow a more
southerly route. In Pennsylvania the principal route was the old
road which, in a general way, followed the line that Forbes had cut
in the French and Indian War from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh by way
of Lancaster and Bedford. By this time the road had been made a
turnpike through a large portion of its course. From Baltimore the
traveler followed a turnpike to Cumberland, on the Potomac, where
began the old National Road across the mountains to Wheeling, on the
Ohio, with branches leading to Pittsburgh. This became one of the
great arteries of western migration and commerce, connecting, as it
did at its eastern end, with the Shenandoah Valley, and thus
affording access to the Ohio for large areas of Virginia. Other
routes lay through the passes of the Alleghenies, easily reached
from the divide between the waters of North Carolina and of West
Virginia. Saluda Gap, in northwestern South Carolina, led the way to
the great valley of eastern Tennessee. In Tennessee and Kentucky
many routes passed to the Ohio in the region of Cincinnati or

When the settler arrived at the waters of the Ohio, he either took a
steamboat or placed his possessions on a flatboat, or ark, and
floated down the river to his destination. From the upper waters of
the Allegheny many emigrants took advantage of the lumber-rafts,
which were constructed from the pine forests of southwestern New
York, to float to the Ohio with themselves and their belongings.
With the advent of the steamboat these older modes of navigation
were, to a considerable extent, superseded. But navigation on the
Great Lakes had not sufficiently advanced to afford opportunity for
any considerable movement of settlement, by this route, beyond Lake

In the course of the decade the cost of reaching the west varied
greatly with the decrease in the transportation rates brought about
by the competition of the Erie Canal, the improvement of the
turnpikes, and the development of steamboat navigation. The expense
of the long overland journey from New England, prior to the opening
of the Erie Canal, made it extremely difficult for those without any
capital to reach the west. The stage rates on the Pennsylvania
turnpike and the old National Road, prior to the opening of the Erie
Canal, were about five or six dollars a hundred-weight from
Philadelphia or Baltimore to the Ohio River; the individual was
regarded as so much freight. [Footnote: Evans, Pedestrians Tour,
145.] To most of the movers, who drove their own teams and camped by
the wayside, however, the actual expense was simply that of
providing food for themselves and their horses on the road. The cost
of moving by land a few years later is illustrated by the case of a
Maryland family, consisting of fifteen persons, of whom five were
slaves. They traveled about twenty miles a day, with a four-horse
wagon, three hundred miles, to Wheeling, at an expense of seventy-
five dollars. [Footnote: Niles' Register, XLVIII., 242.] The expense
of traveling by stage and steamboat from Philadelphia to St. Louis
at the close of the decade was about fifty-five dollars for one
person; or by steamboat from New Orleans to St. Louis, thirty
dollars, including food and lodging. For deck-passage, without food
or lodging, the charge was only eight dollars. [Footnote: Ill.
Monthly Magazine, II., 53.] In 1823 the cost of passage from
Cincinnati to New Orleans by steamboat was twenty-five dollars; from
New Orleans to Cincinnati, fifty dollars. [Footnote: Niles'
Register, XXV., 95.] In the early thirties one could go from New
Orleans to Pittsburgh, as cabin passenger, for from thirty-five to
forty-five dollars. [Footnote: Emigrants' and Travelers' Guide
through the Valley of the Mississippi, 341.]



Arrived at the nearest point to his destination on the Ohio, the
emigrant either cut out a road to his new home or pushed up some
tributary of that river in a keel-boat. If he was one of the poorer
classes, he became a squatter on the public lands, trusting to find
in the profits of his farming the means of paying for his land. Not
uncommonly, after clearing the land, he sold his improvements to the
actual purchaser, under the customary usage or by pre-emption laws.
[Footnote: Hall, Statistics of the West, 180; Kingdom, America, 56;
Peck, New Guide for Emigrants to the West (1837), 119-132.] With the
money thus secured he would purchase new land in a remoter area, and
thus establish himself as an independent land-owner. Under the
credit system [Footnote: Emerick, Credit and the Public Domain.]
which existed at the opening of the period, the settler purchased
his land in quantities of not less than one hundred and sixty acres
at two dollars per acre, by a cash payment of fifty cents per acre
and the rest in installments running over a period of four years;
but by the new law of 1820 the settler was permitted to buy as small
a tract as eighty acres from the government at a minimum price of a
dollar and a quarter per acre, without credit. The price of labor in
the towns along the Ohio, coupled with the low cost of provisions,
made it possible for even a poor day-laborer from the East to
accumulate the necessary amount to make his land-purchase.
[Footnote: See, for example, Peck, New Guide for Emigrants to the
West (1837), 107-134; Bradbury, Travels, 286.]

Having in this way settled down either as a squatter or as a land-
owner, the pioneer proceeded to hew out a clearing in the midst of
the forest. [Footnote: Kingdom, America, 10, 54, 63; Flint, Letters,
206; McMaster, United States, V., 152-155; Howells, Life in Ohio,
115.] Commonly he had selected his lands with reference to the value
of the soil, as indicated by the character of the hardwoods, but
this meant that the labor of clearing was the more severe in good
soil. Under the sturdy strokes of his axe the light of day was let
into the little circle of cleared ground. [Footnote: Hall,
Statistics of the West, 98, 101, 145.] With the aid of his
neighbors, called together under the social attractions of a
"raising," with its inevitable accompaniment of whiskey and a
"frolic," he erected his log-cabin. "America," wrote Birkbeck, "was
bred in a cabin." [Footnote: Birkbeck, Notes on Journey, 94.]

Having secured a foothold, the settler next proceeded to "girdle" or
"deaden" an additional forest area, preparatory to his farming
operations. This consisted in cutting a ring through the bark around
the lower portion of the trunk, to prevent the sap from rising. In a
short time the withered branches were ready for burning, and in the
midst of the stumps the first crop of corn and vegetables was
planted. Often the settler did not even burn the girdled trees, but
planted his crop under the dead foliage.

In regions nearer to the east, as in western New York, it was
sometimes possible to repay a large portion of the cost of clearing
by the sale of pot and pearl ashes extracted from the logs, which
were brought together into huge piles for burning. [Footnote: Life
of Thurlow Weed (Autobiography), I., ii.] This was accomplished by a
"log-rolling," under the united efforts of the neighbors, as in the
case of the "raising." More commonly in the west the logs were
wasted by burning, except such as were split into rails, which, laid
one above another, made the zig-zag "worm-fences" for the protection
of the fields of the pioneer.

When a clearing was sold to a later comer, fifty or sixty dollars,
in addition to the government price of land, was commonly charged
for forty acres, enclosed and partly cleared. [Footnote: Kingdom,
America, 10, 54.] It was estimated that the cost of a farm of three
hundred and twenty acres at the edge of the prairie in Illinois, at
this time, would be divided as follows: for one hundred and sixty
acres of prairie, two hundred dollars; for fencing it into four
forty-acre fields with rail-fences, one hundred and sixty dollars;
for breaking it up with a plough, two dollars per acre, or three
hundred and twenty dollars; eighty acres of timber land and eighty
acres of pasture prairie, two hundred dollars. Thus, with cabins,
stables, etc., it cost a little over a thousand dollars to secure an
improved farm of three hundred and twenty acres. [Footnote: J.M.
Peck, Guide for Emigrants (1831), 183-188; cf. Birkbeck (London,
1818), Letters, 45, 46, 69-73; S.H. Collins, Emigrant's Guide;
Tanner (publisher), View of the Valley of the Miss. (1834), 232; J.
Woods, Two Years' Residence, 146, 172.] But the mass of the early
settlers were too poor to afford such an outlay, and were either
squatters within a little clearing, or owners of eighty acres, which
they hoped to increase by subsequent purchase. Since they worked
with the labor of their own hands and that of their sons, the cash
outlay was practically limited to the original cost of the lands and
articles of husbandry. The cost of an Indiana farm of eighty acres
of land, with two horses, two or three cows, a few hogs and sheep,
and farming utensils, was estimated at about four hundred dollars.

The peculiar skill required of the axeman who entered the hardwood
forests, together with readiness to undergo the privations of the
life, made the backwoodsman in a sense an expert engaged in a
special calling. [Footnote: J. Hall, Statistics of the West, 101;
cf. Chastellux, Travels in North America (London, 1787), I., 44.]
Frequently he was the descendant of generations of pioneers, who, on
successive frontiers, from the neighborhood of the Atlantic coast
towards the interior, had cut and burned the forest, fought the
Indians, and pushed forward the line of civilization. He bore the
marks of the struggle in his face, made sallow by living in the
shade of the forest, "shut from the common air," [Footnote:
Birkbeck, Notes on Journey, 105-114.] and in a constitution often
racked by malarial fever. Dirt and squalor were too frequently found
in the squatter's cabin, and education and the refinements of life
were denied to him. Often shiftless and indolent, in the intervals
between his tasks of forest-felling he was fonder of hunting than of
a settled agricultural life. With his rifle he eked out his
sustenance, and the peltries furnished him a little ready cash. His
few cattle grazed in the surrounding forest, and his hogs fed on its

The backwoodsman of this type represented the outer edge of the
advance of civilization. Where settlement was closer, co-operative
activity possible, and little villages, with the mill and retail
stores, existed, conditions of life were ameliorated, and a better
type of pioneer was found. Into such regions circuit-riders and
wandering preachers carried the beginnings of church organization,
and schools were started. But the frontiersmen proper constituted a
moving class, ever ready to sell out their clearings in [Footnote:
Babcock, Forty Years of Pioneer Life ("Journals and Correspondence
of J.M. Peck"), 101.] order to press on to a new frontier, where
game more abounded, soil was reported to be better, and where the
forest furnished a welcome retreat from the uncongenial
encroachments of civilization. If, however, he was thrifty and
forehanded, the backwoodsman remained on his clearing, improving his
farm and sharing in the change from wilderness life.

Behind the type of the backwoodsman came the type of the pioneer
farmer. Equipped with a little capital, he often, as we have seen,
purchased the clearing, and thus avoided some of the initial
hardships of pioneer life. In the course of a few years, as saw-
mills were erected, frame-houses took the place of the log-cabins;
the rough clearing, with its stumps, gave way to well-tilled fields;
orchards were planted; live-stock roamed over the enlarged clearing;
and an agricultural surplus was ready for export. Soon the
adventurous speculator offered corner lots in a new town-site, and
the rude beginnings of a city were seen.

Thus western occupation advanced in a series of waves: [Footnote:
J.M. Peck, New Guide to the West (Cincinnati, 1848), chap. iv.; T.
Flint, Geography and Hist. of the Western States, 350 et seq.; J.
Flint, Letters from America, 206; cf. Turner, Significance of the
Frontier in American History, in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1893, p.
214; McMaster, United States, V., 152-160.] the Indian was sought by
the fur-trader; the fur-trader was followed by the frontiersman,
whose live-stock exploited the natural grasses and the acorns of the
forest; next came the wave of primitive agriculture, followed by
more intensive farming and city life. All the stages of social
development went on under the eye of the traveler as he passed from
the frontier towards the east. Such were the forces which were
steadily pushing their way into the American wilderness, as they had
pushed for generations.

While thus the frontier folk spread north of the Ohio and up the
Missouri, a different movement was in progress in the Gulf region of
the west. In the beginning precisely the same type of occupation was
to be seen: the poorer classes of southern emigrants cut out their
clearings along rivers that flowed to the Gulf and to the lower
Mississippi, and, with the opening of this decade, went in
increasing numbers into Texas, where enterprising Americans secured
concessions from the Mexican government. [Footnote: Garrison, Texas,
chaps, xiii., xiv.; Wooten (editor), Comprehensive Hist. of Texas,
I., chaps. viii., ix.; Texas State Hist. Assoc., Quarterly, VII.,
29, 289; Bugbee, "Texas Frontier," in Southern Hist. Assoc.,
Publications, IV., 106.]

Almost all of the most recently occupied area was but thinly
settled. It represented the movement of the backwoodsman, with axe
and rifle, advancing to the conquest of the forest. But closer to
the old settlements a more highly developed agriculture was to be
seen. Hodgson, in 1821, describes plantations in northern Alabama in
lands ceded by the Indians in 1818. Though settled less than two
years, there were within a few miles five schools and four places of
worship. One plantation had one hundred acres in cotton and one
hundred and ten in corn, although a year and a half before it was
wilderness. [Footnote: Hodgson, Letters from North Am., I., 269; see
Riley (editor), "Autobiography of Lincecum," in Miss. Hist. Soc.,
Publications, VIII., 443, for the wanderings of a southern pioneer
in the recently opened Indian lands of Georgia and the southwest in
these years.]

But while this population of log-cabin pioneers was entering the
Gulf plains, caravans of slave-holding planters were advancing from
the seaboard to the occupation of the cotton-lands of the same
region. As the free farmers of the interior had been replaced in the
upland country of the south by the slaveholding planters, so now the
frontiersmen of the southwest were pushed back from the more fertile
lands into the pine hills and barrens. Not only was the pioneer
unable to refuse the higher price which was offered him for his
clearing, but, in the competitive bidding of the public land sales,
[Footnote: Northern Ala. (published by Smith & De Land), 249; Brown,
Hist. of Ala., 129-131; Brown, Lower South, 24-26.] the wealthier
planter secured the desirable soils. Social forces worked to the
same end. When the pioneer invited his slave-holding neighbor to a
"raising," it grated on his sense of the fitness of things to have
the guest appear with gloves, directing the gang of slaves which he
contributed to the function. [Footnote: Smedes, A Southern Planter,
67.] Little by little, therefore, the old pioneer life tended to
retreat to the less desirable lands, leaving the slave-holder in
possession of the rich "buck-shot" soils that spread over central
Alabama and Mississippi and the fat alluvium that lined the eastern
bank of the Mississippi. Even to-day the counties of dense Negro
population reveal the results of this movement of segregation.

By the side of the picture of the advance of the pioneer farmer,
bearing his household goods in his canvas-covered wagon to his new
home across the Ohio, must therefore be placed the picture of the
southern planter crossing through the forests of western Georgia,
Alabama, and Mississippi, or passing over the free state of Illinois
to the Missouri Valley, in his family carriage, with servants, packs
of hunting-dogs, and a train of slaves, their nightly camp-fires
lighting up the wilderness where so recently the Indian hunter had
held possession. [Footnote: Hodgson, Letters from North Am., I.,
138; Niles' Register, XLIV., 222; Smedes, A Southern Planter, 52-54;
Flint, Geography and History of the Western States, II., 350, 379;
Bernhard, Duke of Saxe-Weimar, Travels, II., chaps. xvi., xvii.]

But this new society had a characteristic western flavor. The old
patriarchal type of slavery along the seaboard was modified by the
western conditions in the midst of which the slave-holding interest
was now lodged. Planters, as well as pioneer farmers, were
exploiting the wilderness and building a new society under
characteristic western influences. Rude strength, a certain
coarseness of life, and aggressiveness characterized this society,
as it did the whole of the Mississippi Valley. [Footnote: Baldwin,
Flush Times in Ala.; cf. Gilmer, Sketches of Georgia, etc.] Slavery
furnished a new ingredient for western forces to act upon. The
system took on a more commercial tinge: the plantation had to be
cleared and made profitable as a purely business enterprise.

The slaves were purchased in considerable numbers from the older
states instead of being inherited in the family. Slave-dealers
passed to the southwest, with their coffles of Negroes brought from
the outworn lands of the old south. It was estimated in 1832 that
Virginia annually exported six thousand slaves for sale to other
states. [Footnote: Collins, Domestic Slave Trade, 50.] An English
traveler reported in 1823 that every year from ten to fifteen
thousand slaves were sold from the states of Delaware, Maryland, and
Virginia, and sent to the south. [Footnote: Blane, Excursion through
U.S., 226; Hodgson, Letters from North Am., I., 194.] At the same
time, illicit importation of slaves through New Orleans reached an
amount estimated at from ten to fifteen thousand a year. [Footnote:
Collins, Domestic Slave Trade, 44.] It was not until the next decade
that this incoming tide of slaves reached its height, but by 1830 it
was clearly marked and was already transforming the southwest.
Mississippi doubled the number of her slaves in the decade, and
Alabama nearly trebled hers. In the same period the number of slaves
of Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina increased but slightly.

As the discussion of the south has already made clear, the
explanation of this transformation of the southwest into a region of
slave-holding planters lies in the spread of cotton into the Gulf
plains. In 1811 this region raised but five million pounds of
cotton; ten years later its product was sixty million pounds; and in
1826 its fields were white with a crop of over one hundred and fifty
million pounds. It soon outstripped the seaboard south. Alabama,
which had practically no cotton crop in 1811, and only ten million
pounds in 1821, had in 1834 eighty-five million pounds, [Footnote:
See table of cotton crop, ante, p. 47.] a larger crop than either
South Carolina or Georgia.

Soon after 1830 the differences between the northern and southern
portions of the Mississippi Valley were still further accentuated.
(1) From New York and New England came a tide of settlement, in the
thirties, which followed the Erie Canal and the Great Lakes, and
began to occupy the prairie lands which had been avoided by the
southern axemen. This region then became an extension of the greater
New England already to be seen in New York. (2) The southern
pioneers in the northwest formed a transitional zone between this
northern area and the slave states south of the Ohio. (3) In the
Gulf plains a greater south was in process of formation, but by no
means completely established. As yet it was a mixture of pioneer and
planter, slave and free, profoundly affected by its western traits.
[Footnote: Curry, "A Settlement in East Ala.," in Am. Hist.
Magazine, II., 203.]

The different states of the south were steadily sending in bands of
colonists. In Alabama, for example, the Georgians settled, as a
rule, in the east; the Tennesseeans, moving from the great bend of
the Tennessee River, were attracted to the northern and middle
section; and the Virginians and Carolinians went to the west and
southwest, following the bottom-lands near the rivers. [Footnote:
Brown, Hist. of Ala., 129, 130; Northern Ala. (published bv Smith &
De Land), pt. iv., 243 et seq.]



By 1820 the west had developed the beginnings of many of the cities
which have since ruled over the region. Buffalo and Detroit were
hardly more than villages until the close of this period. They
waited for the rise of steam navigation on the Great Lakes and for
the opening of the prairies. Cleveland, also, was but a hamlet
during most of the decade; but by 1830 the construction of the canal
connecting the Cuyahoga with the Scioto increased its prosperity,
and its harbor began to profit by its natural advantages. [Footnote:
Whittlesey, Early Hist. of Cleveland, 456; Kennedy, Hist. of
Cleveland, chap. viii.] Chicago and Milwaukee were mere fur-trading
stations in the Indian country. Pittsburgh, at the head of the Ohio,
was losing its old pre-eminence as the gateway to the west, but was
finding recompense in the development of its manufactures. By 1830
its population was about twelve thousand. [Footnote: Thurston,
Pittsburg and Allegheny in the Centennial Year, 61.] Foundries,
rolling-mills, nail-factories, steam-engine shops, and distilleries
were busily at work, and the city, dingy with the smoke of soft
coal, was already dubbed the "young Manchester" or the "Birmingham"
of America. By 1830 Wheeling had intercepted much of the overland
trade and travel to the Ohio, profiting by the old National Road and
the wagon trade from Baltimore. [Footnote: Martin, Gazetteer of Va.,

Cincinnati was rapidly rising to the position of the "Queen City of
the West." Situated where the river reached with a great bend
towards the interior of the northwest, in the rich farming country
between the two Miamis, and opposite the Licking River, it was the
commercial center of a vast and fertile region of Ohio and Kentucky;
[Footnote: Melish, Information to Emigrants, 108.] and by 1830, with
a population of nearly twenty-five thousand souls, it was the
largest city of the west, with the exception of New Orleans. The
center of steamboat-building, it also received extensive imports of
goods from the east and exported the surplus crops of Ohio and
adjacent parts of Kentucky. Its principal industry, however, was
pork-packing, from which it won the name of "Porkopolis" [Footnote:
Drake and Mansfield, Cincinnati in 1826, p. 70; Winter in the West,
I., 115.] Louisville, at the falls of the Ohio, was an important
place of trans-shipment, and the export center for large quantities
of tobacco. There were considerable manufactures of rope and
bagging, products of the Kentucky hemp-fields; and new cotton and
woolen factories were struggling for existence. [Footnote: Durrett,
Centenary of Louisville (Filson Club, Publications, No. 8), 50-101;
Louisville Directory, 1832, p. 131.] St. Louis occupied a unique
position, as the entrepot of the important fur-trade of the upper
Mississippi and the vast water system of the Missouri, as well as
the outfitting-point for the Missouri settlements. It was the
capital of the far west, and the commercial center for Illinois. Its
population at the close of the decade was about six thousand.

Only a few villages lay along the Mississippi below St. Louis until
the traveler reached New Orleans, the emporium of the whole
Mississippi Valley. As yet the direct effect of the Erie Canal was
chiefly limited to the state of New York. The great bulk of western
exports passed down the tributaries of the Mississippi to this city,
which was, therefore, the center of foreign exports for the valley,
as well as the port from which the coastwise trade in the products
of the whole interior departed. In 1830 its population was nearly
fifty thousand.

The rise of an agricultural surplus was transforming the west and
preparing a new influence in the nation. It was this surplus and the
demand for markets that developed the cities just mentioned. As they
grew, the price of land in their neighborhood increased; roads
radiated into the surrounding country; and farmers, whose crops had
been almost worthless from the lack of transportation facilities,
now found it possible to market their surplus at a small profit.
While the west was thus learning the advantages of a home market,
the extension of cotton and sugar cultivation in the south and
southwest gave it a new and valuable market. More and more, the
planters came to rely upon the northwest for their food supplies and
for the mules and horses for their fields. Cotton became the
engrossing interest of the plantation belt, and, while the full
effects of this differentiation of industry did not appear in the
decade of this volume, the beginnings were already visible.
[Footnote: Callender, "Early Transportation and Banking Enterprises
of the States," in Quarterly Journal of Econ., XVII., 3-54.] In
1835, Pitkin [Footnote: Pitkin, Statistical View (1835), 534.]
reckoned the value of the domestic and foreign exports of the
interior as far in excess of the whole exports of the United States
in 1790. Within forty years the development of the interior had
brought about the economic independence of the United States.

During most of the decade the merchandise to supply the interior was
brought laboriously across the mountains by the Pennsylvania
turnpikes and the old National Road; or, in the case of especially
heavy freight, was carried along the Atlantic coast into the gulf
and up the Mississippi and Ohio by steamboats. The cost of
transportation in the wagon trade from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh
and Baltimore to Wheeling placed a heavy tax upon the consumer.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XX., 180.] In 1817 the freight charge
from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh was sometimes as high as seven to
ten dollars a hundredweight; a few years later it became from four
to six dollars; and in 1823 it had fallen to three dollars. It took
a month to wagon merchandise from Baltimore to central Ohio.
Transportation companies, running four-horse freight wagons,
conducted a regular business on these turn-pikes between the eastern
and western states. In 1820 over three thousand wagons ran between
Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, transporting merchandise valued at
about eighteen million dollars annually. [Footnote: Birkbeck,
Journey from Va., 128; Ogden, Letters from the West, 8; Cobbett,
Year's Residence, 337; Evans, Pedestrious Tour, 145; Philadelphia in
1824, 45; Searight, Old Pike, 107, 112; Mills, Treatise on Inland
Navigation (1820), 89, 90, 93, 95-97; Journal of Polit. Econ.,
VIII., 36.]

The construction of the National Road reduced freight rates to
nearly one-half what they were at the close of the War of 1812; and
the introduction of steam navigation from New Orleans up the
Mississippi cut water-rates by that route to one-third of the former
charge. [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., I Sess., I., 991; cf.
Fearon, Sketches, 260; Niles' Register, XXV., 95; Cincinnati
Christian Journal, July 27, 1830.] Nevertheless, there was a crying
need for internal improvements, and particularly for canals, to
provide an outlet for the increasing products of the west. "Even in
the country where I reside, not eighty miles from tidewater," said
Tucker, [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 15 Cong., I Sess., I., 1126.] of
Virginia, in 1818, "it takes the farmer one bushel of wheat to pay
the expense of carrying two to a seaport town."

The bulk of the crop, as compared with its value, practically
prevented transportation by land farther than a hundred miles.
[Footnote: McMaster, United States, III., 464.] It is this that
helps to explain the attention which the interior first gave to
making whiskey and raising live-stock; the former carried the crop
in a small bulk with high value, while the live-stock could walk to
a market. Until after the War of 1812, the cattle of the Ohio Valley
were driven to the seaboard, chiefly to Philadelphia or Baltimore.
Travelers were astonished to see on the highway droves of four or
five thousand hogs, going to an eastern market. It was estimated
that over a hundred thousand hogs were driven east annually from
Kentucky alone. Kentucky hog-drivers also passed into Tennessee,
Virginia, and the Carolinas with their droves. [Footnote: Life of
Ephraim Cutler, 89; Birkbeck, Journey, 24.; Blane, Excursion through
U. S. (London, 1824), 90; Atlantic Monthly, XXVI., 170.] The swine
lived on the nuts and acorns of the forest; thus they were
peculiarly suited to pioneer conditions. At first the cattle were
taken to the plantations of the Potomac to fatten for Baltimore and
Philadelphia, much in the same way that, in recent times, the cattle
of the Great Plains are brought to the feeding-grounds in the corn
belt of Kansas, Nebraska, and Iowa. [Footnote: Michaux, Travels,
191: Palmer, Journal of Travels, 36] Towards the close of the
decade, however, the feeding-grounds shifted into Ohio, and the
pork-packing industry, as we have seen, found its center at
Cincinnati, [Footnote:  Hall, Statistics of the West (1836), 145-
147.] the most important source of supply for the hams and bacon and
salt pork which passed down the Mississippi to furnish a large share
of the plantation food. From Kentucky and the rest of the Ohio
Valley droves of mules and horses passed through the Tennessee
Valley to the south to supply the plantations. Statistics at
Cumberland Gap for 1828 gave the value of live-stock passing the
turnpike gate there at $1,167,000. [Footnote: Emigrants' and
Travellers' Guide to the West (1834), 194.] Senator Hayne, of South
Carolina, declared that in 1824 the south was supplied from the
west, through Saluda Gap, with live-stock, horses, cattle, and hogs
to the amount of over a million dollars a year. [Footnote: Speech in
Senate in 1832, Register of Debates in Cong., VIII., pt. i., 80; cf.
Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., i Sess., I., 1411.]

But the outlet from the west over the roads to the east and south
was but a subordinate element in the internal commerce. Down the
Mississippi floated a multitude of heavily freighted craft: lumber
rafts from the Allegheny, the old-time arks, with cattle, flour, and
bacon, hay-boats, keel-boats, and skiffs, all mingled with the
steamboats which plied the western waters. [Footnote: Flint,
Recollections of the Last Ten Years, 101-110; E. S. Thomas,
Reminiscences, I., 290-293; Hall, Statistics of the West (1836),
236; Howells, Life in Ohio, 85; Schultz, Travels, 129; Hulbert,
Historic Highways, IX., chaps, iii., iv., v.] Flatboatmen, raftsmen,
and deck-hands constituted a turbulent and reckless population,
living on the country through which they passed, fighting and
drinking in true "half-horse, half-alligator" style. Prior to the
steamboat, all of the commerce from New Orleans to the upper country
was carried on in about twenty barges, averaging a hundred tons
each, and making one trip a year. Although the steamboat did not
drive out the other craft, it revolutionized the commerce of the
river. Whereas it had taken the keel-boats thirty to forty days to
descend from Louisville to New Orleans, and about ninety days to
ascend the fifteen hundred miles of navigation by poling and warping
up-stream, the steamboat had shortened the time, by 1822, to seven
days down and sixteen days up. [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 17 Gong.,
2 Sess., 407; McMaster, United States, V., 166; National Gazette,
September 26, 1823 (list of steamboats, rates of passage, estimate
of products); Blane, Excursion through the U. S., 119; Niles'
Register, XXV., 95.] As the steamboats ascended the various
tributaries of the Mississippi to gather the products of the growing
west, the pioneers came more and more to realize the importance of
the invention. They resented the idea of the monopoly which Pulton
and Livingston wished to enforce prior to the decision of Chief-
Justice Marshall, in the case of Gibbons vs. Ogden--a decision of
vital interest to the whole interior. [Footnote: Thomas, Travels
through the Western Country, 62; Alexandria Herald, June 23, 1817.]

They saw in the steamboat a symbol of their own development. A
writer in the Western Monthly Review, [Footnote: Timothy Flint's
Western Monthly Review (May, 1827), I., 25; William Bullock, Sketch
of a Journey, 132.] unconsciously expressed the very spirit of the
self-contented, hustling, materialistic west in these words: "An
Atlantic cit, who talks of us under the name of backwoodsmen, would
not believe, that such fairy structures of oriental gorgeousness and
splendor, as the Washington, the Florida, the Walk in the Water, the
Lady of the Lake, etc. etc., had ever existed in the imaginative
brain of a romancer, much less, that they were actually in
existence, rushing down the Mississippi, as on the wings of the
wind, or plowing up between the forests, and walking against the
mighty current 'as things of life,' bearing speculators, merchants,
dandies, fine ladies, every thing real, and every thing affected, in
the form of humanity, with pianos, and stocks of novels, and cards,
and dice, and flirting, and love-making, and drinking, and
champagne, and on the deck, perhaps, three hundred fellows, who have
seen alligators, and neither fear whiskey, nor gun-powder. A
steamboat, coming from New Orleans, brings to the remotest villages
of our streams, and the very doors of the cabins, a little Paris, a
section of Broadway, or a slice of Philadelphia, to ferment in the
minds of our young people, the innate propensity for fashions and
finery. Within a day's journey of us, three distinct canals are in
respectable progress towards completion. . . . Cincinnati will soon
be the center of the 'celestial empire,' as the Chinese say; and
instead of encountering the storms, the sea sickness, and dangers of
a passage from the gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic, whenever the Erie
canal shall be completed, the opulent southern planters will take
their families, their dogs and parrots, through a world of forests,
from New Orleans to New York, giving us a call by the way. When they
are more acquainted with us, their voyage will often terminate

By 1830 the produce which reached New Orleans from the Mississippi
Valley amounted to about twenty-six million dollars. [Footnote:
Quarterly Journal of Economics, XVII., 20; Pitkin, Statistical View
(ed. of 1835), 534-536.] In 1822 three million dollars' worth of
goods was estimated to have passed the Falls of the Ohio on the way
to market, representing much of the surplus of the Ohio Valley. Of
this, pork amounted to $1,000,000 in value; flour to $900,000;
tobacco to $600,000; and whiskey to $500,000. [Footnote: National
Republican, March 7, 1823; cf. National Gazette, September 26, 1823;
Blane, Excursion through the U. S., 119.] The inventory of products
reveals the Mississippi Valley as a vast colonial society, producing
the raw materials of a simple and primitive agriculture. The
beginnings of manufacture in the cities, however, promised to bring
about a movement for industrial independence in the west. In spite
of evidences of growing wealth, there was such a decline in
agricultural prices that, for the farmer who did not live on the
highways of commerce, it was almost unprofitable to raise wheat for
the market.

An Ohio pioneer of this time relates that at the beginning of the
decade fifty cents a bushel was a great price for wheat at the
river; and as two horses and a man were required for four days to
make the journey of thirty-five miles to the Ohio, in good weather,
with thirty-five or forty bushels of wheat, and a great deal longer
if the roads were bad, it was not to be expected that the farmer
could realize more than twenty-five cents in cash for it. But there
was no sale for it in cash. The nominal price for it in trade was
usually thirty cents. [Footnote: Howells, Life in Ohio, 138; see
M'Culloch, Commercial Dictionary, I., 683,684; Hazard, U.S.
Commercial and Statistical Register, I., 251; O'Reilly, Sketches of
Rochester, 362.] When wheat brought twenty-five cents a bushel in
Illinois in 1825, it sold at over eighty cents in Petersburg,
Virginia, and flour was six dollars a barrel at Charleston, South
Carolina. [Footnote: Niles' Register, XXIX, 165.]

These are the economic conditions that assist in understanding the
political attitude of western leaders like Henry Clay and Andrew
Jackson. The cry of the east for protection to infant industries was
swelled by the little cities of the west, and the demand for a home
market found its strongest support beyond the Alleghenies. Internal
improvements and lower rates of transportation were essential to the
prosperity of the westerners. Largely a debtor class, in need of
capital, credit, and an expansion of the currency, they resented
attempts to restrain the reckless state banking which their optimism

But the political ideals and actions of the west are explained by
social quite as much as by economic forces. It was certain that this
society, where equality and individualism flourished, where
assertive democracy was supreme, where impatience with the old order
of things was a ruling passion, would demand control of the
government, would resent the rule of the trained statesmen and
official classes, and would fight nominations by congressional
caucus and the continuance of presidential dynasties. Besides its
susceptibility to change, the west had generated, from its Indian
fighting, forest-felling, and expansion, a belligerency and a
largeness of outlook with regard to the nation's territorial
destiny. As the pioneer, widening the ring-wall of his clearing in
the midst of the stumps and marshes of the wilderness, had a vision
of the lofty buildings and crowded streets of a future city, so the
west as a whole developed ideals of the future of the common man,
and of the grandeur and expansion of the nation.

The west was too new a section to have developed educational
facilities to any large extent. The pioneers' poverty, as well as
the traditions of the southern interior from which they so largely
came, discouraged extensive expenditures for public schools.
[Footnote: McMaster, United States, V., 370-372.] In Kentucky and
Tennessee the more prosperous planters had private tutors, often New
England collegians, for their children. For example, Amos Kendall,
later postmaster-general, was tutor in Henry Clay's family. So-
called colleges were numerous, some of them fairly good. In 1830 a
writer made a survey of higher education in the whole western
country and reported twenty-eight institutions, with seven hundred
and sixty-six graduates and fourteen hundred and thirty
undergraduates. Less than forty thousand volumes were recorded in
the college and "social" libraries of the entire Mississippi Valley.
[Footnote: Am. Quarterly Register (November, 1830), III., 127-131.]
Very few students went from the west to eastern colleges; but the
foundations of public education had been laid in the land grants for
common schools and universities. For the present this fund was
generally misappropriated and wasted, or worse. Nevertheless, the
ideal of a democratic education was held up in the first
constitution of Indiana, making it the duty of the legislature to
provide for "a general system of education, ascending in a regular
graduation from township schools to a State university, wherein
tuition shall be gratis, and equally open to all." [Footnote: Poore,
Charters and Constitutions, pt. i., 508 (art. ix., sec. 2 of
Constitution of Ind., 1816).]

Literature did not flourish in the west, although the newspaper
press [Footnote: W. H. Perrin, Pioneer Press of Ky. (Filson Club
Publications).] followed closely after the retreating savage; many
short-lived periodicals were founded, [Footnote: Venable, Beginnings
of Literary Culture in the Ohio Valley, chap, iii.; W. B. Cairns,
Development of American Literature from 1815 to 1833, in University
of Wis., Bulletin (Phil, and Lit. Series), I., 60-63.] and writers
like Timothy Flint and James Hall were not devoid of literary
ability. Lexington, in Kentucky, and Cincinnati made rival claims to
be the "Athens of the West." In religion, the west was partial to
those denominations which prevailed in the democratic portions of
the older sections. Baptists, Methodists, and Presbyterians took the
lead. [Footnote: Am. Quarterly Register, III., 135 (November, 1830);
Schermerhorn and Mills, View of U. S. West of the Alleghany
Mountains (Hartford, 1814); Home Missionary, 1829, pp. 78, 79; 1830,
p. 172; McMaster, United States, IV., 550-555.]

The religious life of the west frequently expressed itself in the
form of emotional gatherings, in the camp-meetings and the revivals,
where the rude, unlettered, but deeply religious backwoods preachers
moved their large audiences with warnings of the wrath of God.
Muscular Christianity was personified in the circuit-rider, who,
with his saddle-bags and Bible, threaded the dreary trails through
the forest from settlement to settlement. From the responsiveness of
the west to religious excitement, it was easy to perceive that here
was a region capable of being swayed in large masses by enthusiasm.
These traits of the camp-meeting were manifested later in political

Thus this society beyond the mountains, recruited from all the older
states and bound together by the Mississippi, constituted a region
swayed for the most part by common impulses. By the march of the
westerners away from their native states to the public domain of the
nation, and by their organization as territories of the United
States, they lost that state particularism which distinguished many
of the old commonwealths of the coast. The section was nationalistic
and democratic to the core. The west admired the self-made man and
was ready to follow its hero with the enthusiasm of a section more
responsive to personality than to the programmes of trained
statesmen. It was a self-confident section, believing in its right
to share in government, and troubled by no doubts of its capacity to


THE FAR WEST (1820-1830)

In the decade of which we write, more than two-thirds of the present
area of the United States was Indian country--a vast wilderness
stretching from the Great Lakes to the Pacific Ocean. East of the
Mississippi, the pioneers had taken possession of the hardwoods of
the Ohio, but over the prairies between them and the Great Lakes the
wild flowers and grasses grew rank and undisturbed. To the north,
across Michigan and Wisconsin, spread the somber, white-pine
wilderness, interlaced with hardwoods, which swept in ample zone
along the Great Lakes, and, in turn, faded into the treeless expanse
of the prairies beyond the Mississippi. To the south, in the Gulf
plains, Florida was, for the most part, a wilderness; and, as we
have seen, great areas of Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia were
still unoccupied by civilization.

West of the Mississippi lay a huge new world--an ocean of grassy
prairie that rolled far to the west, till it reached the zone where
insufficient rainfall transformed it into the arid plains, which
stretched away to the foot-hills of the Rocky Mountains. Over this
vast waste, equal in area to France, Germany, Spain, Portugal,
Austria-Hungary, Italy, Denmark, and Belgium combined, a land where
now wheat and corn fields and grazing herds produce much of the food
supply for the larger part of America and for great areas of Europe,
roamed the bison and the Indian hunter. Beyond this, the Rocky
Mountains and the Sierra Nevadas, enclosing high plateaus, heaved up
their vast bulk through nearly a thousand miles from east to west,
concealing untouched treasures of silver and gold. The great valleys
of the Pacific coast in Oregon and California held but a sparse
population of Indian traders, a few Spanish missions, and scattered

At the beginning of Monroe's presidency, the Pacific coast was still
in dispute between England, Spain, Russia, and the United States.
Holding to all of Texas, Spain also raised her flag over her
colonists who spread from Mexico along the valley of the Rio Grande
to Santa Fe, and she claimed the great unoccupied wilderness of
mountain and desert comprising the larger portion of Colorado,
Arizona, Utah, and Nevada, as well as California. In the decade of
1820-1830, fur-traders threaded the dark and forbidding defiles of
the mountains, unfolded the secrets of the Great Basin, and found
their way across the Rockies to California and Oregon; the
government undertook diplomatic negotiations to safeguard American
rights on the Pacific, and extended a line of forts well into the
Indian country; while far-seeing statesmen on the floor of Congress
challenged the nation to fulfill its destiny by planting its
settlements boldly beyond the Rocky Mountains on the shores of the
Pacific. It was a call to the lodgment of American power on that
ocean, the mastery of which is to determine the future relations of
Asiatic and European civilizations. [Footnote: Cf. Babcock, Am.
Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xv.]

A survey of the characteristics of the life of the far west shows
that, over Wisconsin and the larger part of Michigan, the Indian
trade was still carried on by methods introduced by the French.
[Footnote: Masson, Le Bourgeois de Nordwest; Parkman. Old Regime.]
Aster's American Fur Company practically controlled the trade of
Wisconsin and Michigan. It shipped its guns and ammunition,
blankets, gewgaws, and whiskey from Mackinac to some one of the
principal posts, where they were placed in the light birch canoes,
manned by French boatmen, and sent throughout the forests to the
minor trading-posts. Practically all of the Indian villages of the
tributaries of the Great Lakes and of the upper Mississippi were
regularly visited by the trader. The trading-posts became the nuclei
of later settlements; the traders' trails grew into the early roads,
and their portages marked out the location for canals. Little by
little the fur-trade was undermining the Indian society and paving
the way for the entrance of civilization. [Footnote: Turner,
Character and Influence of the Fur Trade in Wis., in Wis. Hist.
Soc., Transactions, 1889.]

In the War of 1812, all along the frontier of Indiana, Illinois, and
Missouri, as well as in the southwest, the settlers had drawn back
into forts, much as in the early days of the occupation of Kentucky
and Tennessee, and the traders and the Indians had been entirely
under the influence of Great Britain. In the negotiations at Ghent,
that power, having captured the American forts at Mackinac, Prairie
du Chien, and Chicago, tried to incorporate in the treaty a
provision for a neutral belt, or buffer state, of Indian territory
in the northwest, to separate Canada from the United States.
[Footnote: Cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap.
x.] Taught by this experience, the United States, at the close of
the war, passed laws excluding aliens from conducting the Indian
trade, and erected forts at Green Bay, Prairie du Chien, Chicago,
and Fort Snelling. By order of Secretary of War Calhoun, Governor
Cass, of Michigan, made an expedition in 1820 along the south shore
of Lake Superior into Minnesota, to compel the removal of English
flags and to replace British by American influence. [Footnote:
Schoolcraft, Hist, of Indian Tribes, VI., 422; ibid., Narrative
Journal; "Doty's Journal," in Wis. Hist. Soc., Collections, XIII.,
163.] At the same time, an expedition under Major Long visited the
upper waters of the Minnesota River on a similar errand. [Footnote:
Keating, Long's Expedition.] An agent who was sent by the government
to investigate the Indian conditions of this region in 1820,
recommended that the country now included in Wisconsin, northern
Michigan, and part of Minnesota should be an Indian reservation,
from which white settlements should be excluded, with the idea that
ultimately the Indian population should be organized as a state of
the Union. [Footnote: Morse, Report on Indian Affairs in 1820.]

The Creeks and Cherokees, Choctaws, and Chickasaws of the Gulf
region were more advanced towards civilization than the Indians of
the northwest. While the latter lived chiefly by hunting and
trapping, the southwestern Indians had developed a considerable
agriculture and a sedentary life. For that very reason, however,
they were the more obnoxious to the pioneers who pressed upon their
territory from all sides; and, as we shall see, strenuous efforts
were made to remove them beyond the Mississippi.

Throughout the decade the problem of the future of the Indians east
of this river was a pressing one, and the secretaries of war, to
whose department the management of the tribes belonged, made many
plans and recommendations for their civilization, improvement, and
assimilation. But the advance of the frontier broke down the efforts
to preserve and incorporate these primitive people in the dominant
American society. [Footnote: Am. State Paps., Indian, II., 275, 542,
et passim; J. Q. Adams, Memoirs, VII., 89, 90, 92; Richardson,
Messages and Papers, II., 234, et seq.]

Across the Mississippi, settlement of the whites had, in the course
of this decade, pushed up the Missouri well towards the western
boundary of the state, and, as the map of the settlement shows, had
made advances towards the interior in parts of Arkansas as well. But
these were only narrow wedges of civilization thrust into the Indian
country, the field of operations of the fur-traders. Successors to
the French traders who had followed the rivers and lakes of Canada
far towards the interior, the Hudson's Bay Company, and the
Northwest Company under British charters had carried their
operations from the Great Lakes to the Pacific long before Americans
entered the west. As early as 1793, Alexander Mackenzie reached the
Pacific from the Great Lakes by way of Canada. [Footnote: Mackenzie,
Travels.] The year before, an English ship under Vancouver explored
the northwestern coast in the hope of finding a passage by sea to
the north and east. He missed the mouth of the Columbia, which in
the following month was entered by an American, Captain Gray, who
ascended the river twenty miles. The expedition of Lewis and Clark,
1804-1806, made the first crossing of the continent from territory
of the United States, and strengthened the claims of that country to
the region of the Columbia. [Footnote: Cf. Charming, Jeffersonian
System (Am. Nation, XII.), chap vii.]

John Jacob Astor's attempt to plant a trading-post at Astoria
[Footnote: Irving, Astoria.] had been defeated by the treachery of
his men, who, at the opening of the War of 1812, turned the post
over to the British Northwest fur-traders. The two great branches of
the Columbia, the one reaching up into Canada, and the other pushing
far into the Rocky Mountains, on the American side, constituted
lines of advance for the rival forces of England and the United
States in the struggle for the Oregon country. The British traders
rapidly made themselves masters of the region. [Footnote: Coues
(editor), Greater Northwest.] By 1825 the Hudson's Bay Company
monopolized the English fur-trade and was established at Fort George
(as Astoria was rechristened), Fort Walla-Walla, and Fort Vancouver,
near the mouth of the Willamette. Here, for twenty-two years, its
agent, Dr. John McLoughlin, one of the many Scotchmen who have built
up England's dominion in the new countries of the globe, ruled like
a benevolent monarch over the realms of the British traders.
[Footnote: Schafer, Pacific Northwest, chap. viii.] From these
Oregon posts as centers they passed as far south as the region of
Great Salt Lake, in what was then Mexican territory.

While the British traders occupied the northwest coast the Spaniards
held California. Although they established the settlement of San
Francisco in the year of the declaration of American independence,
settlement grew but slowly. The presidios, the missions, with their
Indian neophytes, and the cattle ranches feebly occupied this
imperial domain. Yankee trading-ships gathered hides and tallow at
San Diego, Monterey, and San Francisco; Yankee whalers, seal-
hunters, and fur-traders sought the northwest coast and passed on to
China to bring back to Boston and Salem the products of the far
east. [Footnote: R. H. Dana, Two Years before the Mast.] But Spain's
possession was not secure. The genius for expansion which had
already brought the Russians to Alaska drew them down the coast even
to California, and in 1812 they established Fort Ross at Bodega Bay,
a few miles below the mouth of Russian River, north of San
Francisco. This settlement, as well as the lesser one in the
Farallone Islands, endured for nearly a generation, a menace to
Spain's ascendancy in California in the chaotic period when her
colonies were in revolt. [Footnote: H. H. Bancroft, Hist. of
California, II., 628; Hittel, Hist. of California.]

In the mean time, from St. Louis as a center, American fur-traders,
the advance-guard of settlement, were penetrating into the heart of
the vast wilderness between the Mississippi and the Pacific coast.
[Footnote: Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade of the Far West] This was a
more absolute Indian domain than was the region between the
Alleghenies and the Mississippi at the end of the seventeenth
century--an empire of mountains and prairies, where the men of the
Stone Age watched with alarm the first crawling waves of that tide
of civilization that was to sweep them away. The savage population
of the far west has already been described in an earlier volume of
this series.[Footnote: Farrand, Basis of Am. Hist. (Am. Nation,
II.), chaps, viii., ix., xii.; see also chap. iv. On the location of
the Indians, see map, p. 309; Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, II., pt.
v., chaps, viii., ix., x.; Bureau of Ethnology, Seventh Annual

With the development of the Rocky Mountain Fur Company, the most
flourishing period of the St. Louis trade in the far west began. The
founder of this company was William H. Ashley, a Virginian. Between
the autumn of 1823 and the spring of the next year, one of his
agents erected a post at the mouth of the Bighorn, and sent out his
trappers through the Green River valley, possibly even to Great Salt
Lake. A detachment of this party found the gateway of the Rocky
Mountains, through the famous South Pass by way of the Sweetwater
branch of the north fork of the Platte. This pass commanded the
routes to the great interior basin and to the Pacific Ocean. What
Cumberland Gap was in the advance of settlement across the
Alleghenies, South Pass was in the movement across the Rocky
Mountains; through it passed the later Oregon and California trails
to the Pacific coast.

On the lower Missouri and at various places in the
interior,[Footnote: See map, p. 114; Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, I.,
44-51 (describes posts, etc.).] stockaded trading-posts were erected
by the Rocky Mountain Fur Company and its rival, the American Fur
Company. In these posts the old fur-trade life of the past went on,
with French half-breed packmen and boatmen, commanded by the
bourgeois. But in some of the best trading-grounds, the savages
declined to permit the erection of posts, and so, under Ashley's
leadership, bands of mounted American trappers, chiefly Kentuckians,
Tennesseeans, and Missourians, were sent out to hunt and trade in
the rich beaver valleys of the mountains. The Rocky Mountain
trappers were the successors to the Allegheny frontiersmen, carrying
on in this new region, where nature wrought on a vaster plan, the
old trapping life which their ancestors had carried on through
Cumberland Gap in the "dark and bloody ground" of Kentucky.

Yearly, in June and July, a rendezvous was held in the mountains, to
which the brigades of trappers returned with the products of their
hunt, to receive the supplies for the coming year. Here, also, came
Indian tribes to trade, and bands of free trappers, lone wanderers
in the mountains, to sell their furs and secure supplies. [Footnote:
Irving, Bonneville, chap. i.] The rendezvous was usually some
verdure-clad valley or park set in the midst of snow-capped
mountains, a paradise of game. Such places were Jackson's Hole, at
the foot of the lofty Tetons, Pierre's Hole, not far away, and
Ogden's Hole, near the present site of Ogden, in Utah. Great Salt
Lake was probably first visited by Bridger in 1824, and the next
year a party of Hudson Bay trappers were expelled by Americans who
took possession of their furs. In 1826, Ashley carried a six-pounder
cannon on wheels to Utah Lake for the defense of his post.

A new advance of the American fur-trader was made when Jedediah
Smith succeeded Ashley as the leader in Rocky Mountain trade and
exploration. In 1826 he left the Salt Lake rendezvous with a party
of trappers to learn the secrets of the lands between the Rocky
Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Proceeding to the southwest along
the Virgin River, Smith descended it to the Colorado, and crossed
the desert to San Diego, California. Here, by the intercession of a
Yankee captain then in that port, he obtained supplies from the
Spaniards, and turned to the northwest, traveling parallel to the
coast for some three hundred miles to wintering grounds on the
headwaters of the San Joaquin and the Merced. Leaving most of his
party behind, he crossed the mountains, by a route south of the
Humboldt, and returned to Great Salt Lake.

Almost immediately he set out again for California by the previous
route, and in 1827 reached the San Jose mission. Here he was
arrested by the Spanish authorities and sent under guard to
Monterey, where another Yankee skipper secured his release.
Wintering once more in California, this time on the American Fork,
he reached the coast in the spring of 1828, and followed the Umpquah
River towards the Oregon country. While he was absent, his camp was
attacked by the Indians and fifteen of his men killed. Absolutely
alone, Smith worked his way through the forest to Fort Vancouver,
where he enjoyed the hospitality of Dr. McLoughlin through the
winter. In the following spring he ascended the Columbia to the
Hudson Bay posts among the Flatheads, and made his way in the summer
of 1829 to the rendezvous of his company at the Tetons. In three
years this daring trader, braving the horrors of the desert and
passing unscathed from Indian attacks which carried off most of his
companions, opened to knowledge much of the vast country between
Great Salt Lake and the Pacific. [Footnote: H. H. Bancroft,
California, III., 152-160, citing the sources.] In 1831, while on
the Santa Fe trail, Smith and his companions lost their way.
Perishing with thirst, he finally reached the Cimaron, where, as he
was digging for water in its sandy bed, he was shot by an Indian.

Thus the active men of the Rocky Mountain Fur Company, in the decade
between 1820 and 1830, revealed the sources of the Platte, the
Green, the Yellowstone, and the Snake rivers, and the
characteristics of the Great Salt Lake region; they pioneered the
way to South Pass, descended Green River by boat, carried cannon
into the interior basin; showed the practicability of a wagon route
through the Rockies, reached California from Salt Lake, crossed the
Sierras and the deserts of Utah and Nevada, and became intimately
acquainted with the activity of the British traders of the northwest
coast. [Footnote: Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, I., 306.]

Already an interest in Oregon and the Rocky Mountain region was
arising on the eastern seaboard. In 1832, Captain Bonneville, an
officer in the United States army, on leave of absence, passed with
a wagon-train into the Rocky Mountains, where for nearly three years
he trapped and traded and explored. [Footnote: Irving, Bonneville.]
Walker, one of his men, in 1833, reached California by the Humboldt
River (a route afterwards followed by the emigrants to California),
and made known much new country. A New England enthusiast, Hall
Kelley, had for some years been lecturing on the riches of the
Oregon country and the need of planting an agricultural colony
there. It was natural that Boston should be interested in the Oregon
country, which was visited by so many vessels from that port. In
1820, New England missionaries settled in the Hawaiian Islands,
closely connected by trade with the coast. In 1832, Nathaniel Wyeth,
of Cambridge, Massachusetts, led a party of New-Englanders west,
with the plan of establishing a trading and fishing post on the
waters of the Columbia. [Footnote: Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, I.,
435; Wyeth's "Journals" are published by the Oregon Hist. Soc.; cf.
Irving, Bonneville, chap. vi.]

With Wyeth, on a second expedition in 1834, went the Reverend Jason
Lee and four Methodist missionaries. Two years later came Dr. Marcus
Whitman and another company of missionaries with their wives; they
brought a wagon through South Pass and over the mountains to the
Snake River, and began an agricultural colony. Thus the old story of
the sequence of fur-trader, missionary, and settler was repeated.
The possession of Oregon by the British fur-trader was challenged by
the American farmer.

Contemporaneously with the development of the fur-trade in the Rocky
Mountains, a trade was opened between St. Louis and the old Spanish
settlements at Santa Fe. Although even in the days of Washington
adventurous frontiersmen like George Rogers Clark had set their eyes
on Santa Fe and the silver-mines of the southwest, it was not until
the Mexican revolution (1821), when Spain's control was weakened
throughout her whole domain, that systematic trade was possible. In
1822, Becknell, of Missouri, took a wagon-train to Santa Fe, to
trade for horses and mules and to trap en route. Year after year
thereafter, caravans of Missouri traders found their way across the
desert, by the Santa Fe trail, with cottons and other dry-goods
furnished from St. Louis, and brought back horses, mules, furs, and
silver. The trade averaged about one hundred and thirty thousand
dollars a year, and was an important source of supply of specie for
the west; and it stimulated the interest of St. Louis in the Mexican
provinces. The mode of handling the wagon--trains that passed
between Missouri and Santa Fe furnished the model for the caravans
that later were to cross the plains in the rush to the gold-fields
of California.[Footnote: Gregg, Commerce of the Prairies;
Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, II., chap. xxix.] By 1833 the important
western routes were clearly made known.[Footnote: Semple, Am. Hist.
and its Geographic Conditions, chap, x.] The Oregon trail, the Santa
Fe trail, the Spanish trail, and the Gila route [Footnote: Personal
Narrative of James O. Pattie; H. H. Bancroft, Hist. of California,
III., 162.] had been followed by frontiersmen into the promised land
of the Pacific coast and the southwest. In the course of ten years,
not only had the principal secrets of the topography of the Rocky
Mountains, the Great Basin, the passes across the Sierra Nevadas
been revealed, but also the characteristics of the Spanish-American
settlements of California and the Rio Grande region. Already
pioneers sought Texas, and American colonization was preparing for
another and greater conquest of the wilderness.

The interest of the United States government in the far west in this
period was shown in exploration and diplomacy. Calhoun projected an
extension of the forts of the United States well up the Missouri
into the Indian country, partly as protection to the traders and
partly as a defense against English aggressions. Two Yellowstone
expeditions [Footnote: Chittenden, Am. Fur Trade, II., 562; Long's
Expedition (Early Western Travels, XIV.-XVII.).] were designed to
promote these ends. The first of these, 1819-1820, was a joint
military and scientific undertaking; but the military expedition,
attempting to ascend the Missouri in steamboats, got no farther than
Council Bluffs. Mismanagement, extravagance, and scandal attended
the undertaking, and the enterprise was made an occasion for a
political onslaught on Calhoun's management of the war department.

The scientific expedition, under Major Long, of the United States
Engineering Corps, ascended the Missouri in the Western Engineer,
the first steamboat which navigated those waters above St. Louis--a
stern-wheeler, with serpent-mouthed figure-head, through which the
steam escaped, bringing terror to the savages along the banks. The
expedition advanced far up the South Platte, discovered Long's Peak,
and camped near the site of Denver. Thence the party passed to La
Junta, Colorado, whence it broke into two divisions, one of which
descended the Arkansas; the other reached the Canadian River (which
it mistook for the Red) and descended to its junction with the
Arkansas. The effort to push the military power of the government to
the mouth of the Yellowstone failed, and the net result, on the
military side, was a temporary post near the present site of Omaha.

The most important effect of the expedition was to give currency to
Long's description of the country through which he passed as the
"Great American Desert," unfit for cultivation and uninhabitable by
agricultural settlers. The whole of the region between the Missouri
River and the Rocky Mountains seemed to him adapted as a range for
buffalo, "calculated to serve as a barrier to prevent too great an
extension of our population westward," and to secure us against the
incursions of enemies in that quarter. [Footnote: Long's Expedition
(Early Western Travels, XVII.), 147, 148.] A second expedition, in
1825, under General Atkinson and Major O'Fallon, reached the mouth
of the Yellowstone, having made treaties with various Indian tribes
on the way.

In the mean time, Congress and the president were busy with the
question of Oregon. By the convention of 1818, with Great Britain,
the northern boundary of the United States was carried from the Lake
of the Woods to the Rocky Mountains, along the forty-ninth parallel.
Beyond the mountains, the Oregon country was left open, for a period
of ten years, to joint occupation of both powers, without prejudice
to the claims of either. Having thus postponed the Oregon question,
the secretary of state, John Quincy Adams, turned to his Spanish
relations. Obliged by Monroe to relinquish our claim to Texas in the
treaty of 1819, by which we obtained Florida, he insisted on so
drawing our boundary-line in the southwest as to acquire Spain's
title to the Pacific north of the forty-second parallel, and to the
lands that lay north and east of the irregular line from the
intersection of this parallel with the Rocky Mountains to the
Sabine. Adams was proud of securing this line to the Pacific Ocean,
for it was the first recognition by an outside power of our rights
in the Oregon country.[Footnote: Treaties and Conventions (ed. of
1889), 416, 1017; Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.),
chap, xvi.; J. Q. Adams, Memoirs, IV., 275.]

Although Russia put forward large and exclusive claims north of the
fifty-first parallel, which we challenged, the contest for Oregon
lay between England and the United States. At the close of 1820,
Floyd, of Virginia, moved in the House of Representatives to inquire
into the feasibility of the occupation of the Columbia River; and
early the next year [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., 2 Sess.,
945; J. Q. Adams, Memoirs, V., 238, 243-260.] a committee report was
brought in, discussing the American rights. Floyd's bill provided
for the military occupation of the Columbia River, donation of lands
to actual settlers, and control of the Indians. No vote was reached,
however, and it was not until the close of 1822 that the matter
secured the attention of Congress.

Whatever may have been his motives, Floyd stated with vividness the
significance of western advance in relation to the Pacific coast. He
showed that, while in 1755, nearly a hundred and fifty years after
the foundation of Jamestown, the population of Virginia had spread
but three hundred miles into the interior of the country, during the
last forty-three years population had spread westward more than a
thousand miles. He recalled the days when more than a month was
required to furnish Kentucky with eastern goods, by way of
Pittsburgh, and when it required a voyage of over a month to pass
from Louisville to New Orleans and nearly three months for the
upward voyage. This had now been shortened by steamboat to seven
days down and sixteen days up. From these considerations and the
time from St. Louis to the mouth of the Columbia by steamboat and
wagon, he argued that Oregon was no more distant from St. Louis in
1822 than St. Louis was twenty years before from Philadelphia. The
fur-trade, the whale and seal fisheries, the trade with China, and
the opportunity for agricultural occupation afforded by Oregon were
all set forth.[Footnote: Annals of Cong., 17 Cong., 2 Sess., 397.]

Against the proposal, his opponents argued inexpediency rather than
our treaties with Great Britain. Tracy, of New York, doubted the
value of the Oregon country, and, influenced perhaps by Long's
report, declared that "nature has fixed limits for our nation; she
has kindly introduced as our Western barrier, mountains almost
inaccessible, whose base she has skirted with irreclaimable deserts
of sand."[Footnote: Ibid., 590.] In a later debate, Smyth, of
Virginia, amplified this idea by a proposal to limit the boundaries
of the United States, so that it should include but one or two tiers
of states beyond the Mississippi. He would remove the Indians beyond
this limit, and, if American settlements should cross it, they might
be in alliance with, or under the protection of, the United States,
but outside of its bounds. [Footnote: Register of Debates, 18 Cong.,
2 Sess., I., 37.]

Baylies, of Massachusetts, declared that there were living witnesses
"who have seen a population of scarcely six hundred thousand swelled
into ten millions; a population which, in their youth, extended
scarcely an hundred miles from the ocean, spreading beyond the
mountains of the West, and sweeping down those mighty waters which
open into regions of such matchless fertility and beauty." "Some now
within these walls may, before they die, witness scenes more
wonderful than these; and in aftertimes may cherish delightful
recollections of this day, when America, almost shrinking from the
'shadows of coming events,' first placed her feet upon untrodden
ground, scarcely daring to anticipate the grandeur which awaited
her." Tucker, of Virginia, agreed that settlement "marches on, with
the increasing rapidity of a fire, and nothing will stop it until it
reaches the shores of the Pacific," which he estimated would be by
1872. But he was loath to see it accelerated, believing that the
people on the east and the west side of the Rocky Mountains would
have a permanent separation of interests. [Footnote: Annals of
Cong., 17 Cong., 2 Sess., 422.] Nor were even western men sanguine
that the nation could retain the Pacific coast as an integral part
of its vast empire. Senator Benton, of Missouri, was the
congressional champion of the far west. Born in interior North
Carolina, he had followed the frontier to Tennessee, and then, after
killing his man in a duel and exchanging pistol-shots in a free
fight with Jackson, he removed to the new frontier at St. Louis.
Pedantic and ponderous, deeply read in curious historical lore, in
many ways he was not characteristic of the far west, but in the
coarse vigor with which he bore down opposition by abuse, and in the
far horizon line of the policies he advocated, he thoroughly
represented its traits.

Familiar as he was with frontier needs and aspirations, he urged the
United States to block England's control of the northwest, and to
assert title to the Oregon territory, with the idea of ultimately
founding a new and independent American nation there. It is true
that he admitted that along the ridge of the Rocky Mountains "the
western limit of this republic should be drawn, and the statue of
the fabled god Terminus should be raised upon its highest peak,
never to be thrown down." [Footnote: Register of Debates, I., 712.]

Nevertheless, in his utterances the ideal of expansion was not to be
mistaken. He spoke bravely in favor of the protection and extension
of the fur-trade, [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 17 Cong., 1 Sess., I.,
416; cf. ibid., 18 Cong., I Sess., I., 456.] pointing out that
inasmuch as England occupied Oregon, she would, under the law of
nations, have the right of possession until the question of
sovereignty were decided. He warned his countrymen, in 1823, that
Great Britain would monopolize the Pacific Ocean, and by obtaining
control of the Rocky Mountain fur-trade would be able to launch the
Indians of the north and west against the frontiers of Missouri and
Arkansas, Illinois and Michigan, upon the first renewal of
hostilities between the United States of America and the king of
Great Britain. [Footnote: Ibid., 17 Cong., 2 Sess., 246-251.]

Benton believed that, within a century, a population greater than
that of the United States of 1820 would exist on the west side of
the Rocky Mountains; and he saw in the occupation of the northwest
coast the means of promoting a trade between the valley of the
Mississippi, the Pacific Ocean, and Asia. Upon the people of eastern
Asia, he thought, the establishment of a civilized power on the
opposite coast of America would produce great benefits. "Science,
liberal principles in government, and the true religion, might cast
their lights across the intervening sea. The valley of the Columbia
might become the granary of China and Japan, and an outlet to their
imprisoned and exuberant population.... Russia and the legitimates
menace Turkey, Persia, China, and Japan; they menace them for their
riches and dominions; the same Powers menace the two Americas for
the popular forms of their Governments. To my mind the proposition
is clear, that Eastern Asia and the two Americas, as they have
become neighbors, should become friends." [Footnote: Register of
Debates, I., 712.]

With true western passion he denounced the relinquishment of Texas
by the treaty of 1819. "The magnificent valley of the Mississippi is
ours," he proclaimed, "with all its fountains, springs, and floods
and woe to the statesman who shall undertake to surrender one drop
of its water, one inch of its soil, to any foreign power." He was
ready for a war with Spain, believing that it would give the United
States the Floridas and Cuba, "the geographical appurtenance of the
valley of the Mississippi"; that it would free the New from the Old
World; and that it would create a cordon of republics across the two
continents of North and South America. He pointed to the west as the
route to the east--the long-sought way to India; and, in
imagination, he outlined the states to be laid off "from the center
of the valley of the Mississippi to the foot of the shining
mountains." "It is time," he wrote, "that Western men had some share
in the destinies of this republic." [Footnote: Meigs, Benton, 98,
99, cf. 91.]



In 1820 the United States had a population of about nine and one-
half millions; in 1830, nearly thirteen millions. It was spread out
from east to west like a page in the history of society. On the
Atlantic seaboard were the centers of American civilization that had
grown up in colonial days in close touch with Europe. From this
region of commerce and manufacture, the nation, on its march towards
the west, changed through successive types of industrial life until
in the Rocky Mountains the frontier fur-trader mingled with the
Indians. The successive stages of social evolution which at first
were exhibited in narrow belts on the Atlantic coast had now spread
nearly across the continent. [Footnote: Turner, "Significance of the
Frontier," in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1893, pp. 200, 206, 208.]

Not only was the country vast in extent, it was rapidly growing. In
the decade the nation increased its population by over three million
and a quarter inhabitants, an addition which nearly equaled the
whole population of any one of the three great sections, the middle
states, the south, and the west. As traveler after traveler passed
over the routes of his predecessor in this period, reporting the
life by the wayside and in the towns, we can almost see American
society unfolding with startling rapidity under our gaze; farms
become hamlets, hamlets grow into prosperous cities; the Indian and
the forests recede; new stretches of wilderness come into view in
the farther west, and we see the irresistible tide of settlement
flowing towards the solitudes.

Nevertheless, at the opening of our survey the nation was in the
gloom of the panic of 1819. This was brought on by the speculative
reaction that immediately followed the war, when the long-pent-up
crops of cotton found a market at the extraordinary price of nearly
thirty cents a pound, and as high as seventy-eight dollars per acre
was bid for government land in the offices of the southwest.
[Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., I Sess., 446.] The policy of
the government fostered reckless purchases of public land. In the
critical times of the closing years of the war, the treasury agreed
to accept the notes of state banks in payment for lands, on
condition that these banks should resume specie payment; and then
the banks, while taking only nominal steps towards resumption,
loaned their paper freely to the settlers and speculators who wished
to invest in the public domain.

Under the credit system already mentioned, the pioneer was tempted
to exhaust his funds in making his first partial payment, and to
rely upon loans from some "wild cat" bank wherewith to complete the
purchase of the hundred and sixty acres, the smallest tract offered
under the terms of the law; planters, relying equally on the state
banks, bought great tracts of land at absurd prices; speculators,
tempted by the rapid rise in land values and by the ease of securing
loans, purchased large quantities in the hope of selling before it
became necessary to complete their payment. On the seaboard,
extravagance abounded as a reaction from the economies of war times,
imported manufactures found a ready market, and the domestic
factories were in distress.

While state banks greatly multiplied and expanded their circulation
freely to meet the demands of borrowers, [Footnote: Stunner, Hist,
of Banking, I., chaps, iv.-vi.] the United States Bank not only
failed to check the movement, but even contributed to it. After a
dance of speculation, the bank, in the summer of 1818, was facing
ruin, and it took drastic means to save itself. Its measures
compelled the state banks to redeem their notes in specie or close
their doors. [Footnote: Catterall, Second Bank, chap. iii.; Dewey,
Financial Hist, of the U. S., chap, vii.; Babcock, Am. Nationality
(Am. Nation. XIII.), chap. xiii.]

By the spring of 1819 the country was in the throes of a panic.
State-bank issues were reduced from one hundred million dollars in
1817 to forty-five millions in 1819. Few banks in the south and west
were able to redeem their notes in specie before 1822; but they
pressed their debtors harshly. Staple productions fell to less than
half of their former price; land values declined fifty to seventy
per cent.; manufacturers were in distress; laborers were out of
work; merchants were ruined. [Footnote: J. Q. Adams, Memoirs, IV.,
375; Jefferson, Writings, X., 257; Benton, View, I., 5; Niles'
Register, XVI., 114; Hodgson, Travels, II., 128; Sumner, Hist, of
Banking, I., chaps, vii., viii.] The conditions are illustrated in
the case of Cincinnati. By the foreclosure of mortgages, the
national bank came to own a large part of the city-hotels, coffee-
houses, warehouses, stables, iron foundries, residences, and vacant
lots. "All the flourishing cities of the West," cried Benton, "are
mortgaged to this money power. They may be devoured by it at any
moment. They are in the jaws of the monster!" Throughout the south
and west the bank became familiarly known as The Monster. [Footnote:
Catterall, Second Bank, 67.]

Even in the days of its laxity the national bank was obnoxious in
many quarters of the country. By the state constitution of 1816
Indiana attempted to prevent the establishment within its limits of
any bank not chartered by the state; and Illinois incorporated a
similar provision in her constitution of 1818. Between 1817 and 1819
Maryland, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Ohio all
passed acts taxing the United States Bank. [Footnote: Ibid., 64,
65.] Ohio, defying the decision of the supreme court in The case of
McCulloch vs. Maryland, which asserted the constitutionality of the
bank and denied to the states the right to tax it, forcibly
collected the tax and practically outlawed the bank. [Footnote: See
chap. xv., below.]

From the beginning of our history the frontier had been a debtor
region, always favorable to an expansion of the currency and to laws
to relieve the debtor class. It was but the continuation of an old
practice when the western legislature in this time of stringency
attempted measures of relief for their citizens. Kentucky's "litter"
of forty banks chartered in the session of 1818-1819 had been forced
to the wall by the measures of the national bank. After the panic,
Kentucky repealed the charters of these banks and incorporated the
Bank of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, an institution without
stockholders and under officers elected by the legislature and paid
by the state. Its notes were assigned to the counties in proportion
to the taxable property, to be loaned on mortgage securities to
those who needed them "for the purpose of paying his, her, or their
just debts," or to purchase products for exportation. The only real
capital of the bank was a legislative appropriation of seven
thousand dollars to buy the material and plates for printing notes.
In short, the treasury of the state was used as a kind of land bank
of the sort favored in the colonial days for the relief of the
debtors.[Footnote: Cf. Greene, Provincial America Am. Nation, VI.,
chap. xvii.] The legislature then passed a replevin law giving the
debtor a delay of two years to satisfy an execution, in case the
creditor refused to accept notes of the Bank of the Commonwealth of
Kentucky as payment; otherwise the debtor received an extension of
but one year. By another law, land could not be sold under execution
to pay a debt unless it brought three-fourths of its value as
appraised by a board of neighbors, usually themselves debtors and
interested in supporting values.

In 1823 the court of appeals of Kentucky declared the replevin and
stay laws unconstitutional. In retaliation the legislature, in
December, 1824, repealed the law establishing the court of appeals,
and a new court was created favorable to the "relief system." This
act the old court also declared unconstitutional, and a contest
followed between the "old court" and the "new court" parties, which
lasted until 1826, when the "old court," "anti-relief" party was
victorious. In the mean time, similar relief measures had been
passed in Tennessee, Illinois, Missouri, and other western
states.[Footnote: Summer, Hist. of Banking, I., chap. x.; ibid.,
122, 146, 157, 161; Durrett, Centenary of Louisville; McMaster,
United states, V., 160.]

The distress brought about by the panic of 1819, the popular
antagonism to the banks in general, and especially to the Bank of
the United States, as "engines of aristocracy," oppressive to the
common people, and the general discontent with the established
order, had, as we have seen, produced a movement comparable to the
populist agitation of our own time.

Upon the general government the first effect of this period of
distress was a general reduction of the revenue. Imports fell from
about $121,000,000 in 1818 to $87,000,000 in 1819. Customs receipts,
Which in 1816 were over $36,000,000, were but $13,000,000 in 1821.
Receipts for public lands, which amounted to $3,274,000 in 1819,
were but $1,635,000 in 1820. In December, 1819, Crawford, the
secretary of the treasury, was obliged to announce a deficit which
required either a reduction in expenditures or an increase in
revenue. Congress provided for two loans, one of $3,000,000 in 1820,
and another of $5,000,000 in 1821. A policy of retrenchment was
vigorously instituted, leveled chiefly at the department of war.
Internal improvement schemes which had been urged in Congress in
1818 were now temporarily put to rest. With the year 1822, however,
conditions brightened, and the treasury began a long term of
prosperity. [Footnote: Dewey, Financial Hist. of the U. S., 168.]

One of the most important results of the crisis was the complete
reorganization of the system of disposal of the public lands. The
public domain was more than a source of revenue to the general
government; it was one of the most profoundly influential factors in
shaping American social conditions. The settler who entered the
wilderness with but a small capital, or who became a squatter on the
public lands without legal title, was impatient with the policy
which made revenue the primary consideration of the government.
Benton expressed this view in 1826, [Footnote: Register of Debates,
19 Cong., I Sess., I., 727.] when he said: "I speak to statesmen,
and not to compting clerks; to Senators, and not to Quaestors of
provinces; to an assembly of legislators, and not to a keeper of the
King's forests. I speak to Senators who know this to be a Republic,
not a Monarchy; who know that the public lands belong to the People
and not to the Federal Government." The effect of the credit system
had been, as we have seen, to stimulate speculation and to plunge
the settlers deeply in debt to the general government.

By 1820 these payments for the public lands were over twenty-two
million dollars in arrears. Relief measures passed by Congress from
time to time had extended the period of payment and made other
concessions. Now the government had to face the problem of
reconstructing its land laws or of continuing the old credit system
and relentlessly expelling the delinquent purchasers from their
hard-won homes on the public domain. Although the legal title
remained in the government, the latter alternative was so obviously
dangerous and inexpedient that Congress passed two new acts. The
first [Footnote: U. S. Statutes at Large, III., 566.] (April 24,
1820) reduced the price of land from two dollars to one dollar and
twenty-five cents per acre, abolished the system of credit, and
provided that lands might be purchased in multiples of eighty acres.
Thus the settler with one hundred dollars could secure full title to
a farm. This was followed by a relief act (March 2, 1821),
recommended by Secretary Crawford, [Footnote: Am. State Papers.,
Finance, III., 551, 718; U. S. Statutes at Large, III., 566.]
allowing previous purchasers to relinquish their claims to land for
which they had not paid, and apply payments already made to full
purchase of a portion of the land to be retained by the buyer, all
overdue interest to be remitted. [Footnote: Ibid., III., 612.] It is
significant that this system was not unlike the relief system which
had been so popular in the west.

This adjustment of the land question by no means closed the
agitation. A few years later Benton repeatedly urged Congress to
graduate the price of public lands according to their real value,
and to donate to actual settlers lands which remained unsold after
they had been offered at fifty cents an acre. [Footnote: Speech in
the Senate, May 16, 1826, Meigs, Benton, 163-170.] The argument
rested chiefly on the large number of men unable to secure a farm
even under the cheaper price of 1820; the great quantity of public
land which remained unsold after it had been offered; the advantage
to the revenues from filling the vacant lands with a productive
population; and the injustice to the western states, which found
themselves unable to obtain revenue by taxing unsold public lands
and which were limited in their power of eminent domain and
jurisdiction as compared with the eastern states, which owned their
public lands. In this agitation lay the germs of the later homestead
system, as well as of the propositions to relinquish the federal
public lands to the states within which they lay.

With manufacturers in distress, thousands of operatives out of
employment, and the crops of parts of the middle states and the west
falling in price to a point where it hardly paid to produce them, an
appeal to Congress to raise the duties established by the tariff of
1816 [Footnote: Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.). chap.
xiv.] was inevitable. Hence, in the spring of 1820 a new tariff bill
was presented by Baldwin, of Pennsylvania, the member from
Pittsburgh. He came from a city which felt the full effects of the
distress of the manufacturers, especially those of iron and glass,
and which was one of the important centers of the great grain-
raising area of the middle states and the Ohio Valley.

Baldwin believed that the time had arrived when, "all the great
interests of the country being equally prostrate, and one general
scene of distress pervading all its parts," there should be a common
effort to improve conditions by a new tariff, intended not for the
sake of restoring the depleted treasury, but distinctly for
protection. Its advocates proposed to meet the failure of the system
of revenue, not by encouraging importations, but by internal taxes
and excises on the manufactured goods protected by the impost.
Additional revenue would be secured by higher duties on sugar,
molasses, coffee, and salt. The bill increased ad valorem duties by
an amount varying from twenty-five to sixty-six per cent,
additional. For woolen and cotton manufactures the rate of
additional duty was about one-third; on hemp, an important product
in Kentucky, about two-thirds. Duty on forged iron bars was
increased from seventy-five cents to one dollar and twenty-five
cents per hundred-weight. On many other articles the increase of
duty amounted to from twenty to one hundred per cent.

Naturally the home-market argument played an important part in the
debates. It was relied upon especially by Henry Clay in his closing
speech, [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., I Sess., II., 3034.]
in which he argued that the rapidity of growth of the United States
as compared with Europe made the ratio of the increase of her
capacity of consumption to that of our capacity of production as one
to four. Already he thought Europe was showing a want of capacity to
consume our surplus; in his opinion, cotton, tobacco, and bread-
stuffs had already reached the maximum of foreign demand. From this
he argued that home manufactures should be encouraged to consume the
surplus, and that some portion of American industry should be
diverted from agriculture to manufacturing.

Industrial independence also required this action. England had
recently imposed new duties on wool and cotton, and her corn laws
contributed to limit her demand for our flour. "I am, too," he said,
"a friend of free trade, but it must be a free trade of perfect
reciprocity. If the governing considerations were cheapness; if
national independence were to weigh nothing; if honor nothing; why
not subsidize foreign powers to defend us?" He met the argument of
the deficiency of labor and of the danger of developing overcrowded
and pauperized manufacturing centers by reasoning that machinery
would enable the Americans to atone for their lack of laborers; and
that while distance and attachment to the native soil would check
undue migration of laborers to the west, at the same time the danger
of congestion in the east would be avoided by the attraction of the
cheap western lands.

Lowndes, of South Carolina, who with Calhoun had been one of the
prominent supporters of the tariff in 1816, now made the principal
speech in opposition: he denied the validity of the argument in
favor of a home market and contended that the supply of domestic
grain would in any case exceed the demand; and that, however small
the export, the price of the portion sent abroad would determine
that of the whole. It is important to observe that the question of
constitutionality was hardly raised. The final vote in the House
(April 29, 1820) stood 91 to 78. New England gave 18 votes in favor
and 17 opposed; the middle region, including Delaware, gave 56 votes
for and 1 vote against; the south, including Maryland and her sister
states on the southern seaboard, gave 5 votes in favor and 50
opposed. The northwest gave its 8 votes in favor, and the southwest,
including Kentucky, gave 4 votes in favor and 10 opposed. The vote
of New England was the most divided of that of any section. From the
manufacturing states of Connecticut and Rhode Island but one member,
a Connecticut man, voted in opposition to the bill. The only 3
negative votes from Massachusetts proper came from the commercial
region of Boston and Salem. That portion of Massachusetts soon to
become the state of Maine gave 4 votes in opposition and only 2 in
favor, the latter coming from the areas least interested in the
carrying-trade. New Hampshire and Vermont gave their whole vote in
opposition, except for one affirmative from Vermont. Kentucky's vote
was 4 in favor to 3 opposed, Speaker Clay not voting.

In general, the distribution of the vote shows that the maritime
interests united with the slave-holding planters, engaged in
producing tobacco, cotton, and sugar, in opposition. On the other
side, the manufacturing areas joined with the grain and wool raising
regions of the middle and western states to support the measure.
From the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware,
Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, casting altogether 65 votes, but one
man voted against the bill, and he was burned in effigy by his
constituents and resigned the same year. Of the 53 votes cast by the
south and southwest, outside of the border states of Maryland and
Kentucky, there were but 5 affirmative votes. It is seen, therefore,
that in the House of Representatives, on the tariff issue, the
middle states and the Ohio Valley were combined against the south
and southwest, while New England's influence was nullified by her
division of interests. By a single vote, on a motion to postpone,
the measure failed in the Senate; but the struggle was only

The most important aspect of the panic of 1819 was its relation to
the forces of unrest and democratic change that were developing in
the United States. Calhoun and John Quincy Adams, conversing in the
spring of 1820 upon politics, had the gloomiest apprehensions. There
had been, within two years, Calhoun said, "an immense revolution of
fortunes in every part of the Union; enormous numbers of persons
utterly ruined; multitudes in deep distress; and a general mass of
disaffection to the Government not concentrated in any particular
direction, but ready to seize upon any event and looking out
anywhere for a leader." They agreed that the Missouri question and
the debates on the tariff were merely incidental to this state of
things, and that this vague but wide-spread discontent, caused by
the disordered circumstances of individuals, had resulted in a
general impression that there was something radically wrong in the
administration of the government. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V.,
128; cf. IV., 498.] Although this impression was the result of
deeper influences than those to which it was attributed by these
statesmen, yet the crisis of 1819, which bore with peculiar
heaviness upon the west and south, undoubtedly aggravated all the
discontent of those regions. To the historian the movement is
profoundly significant, for ultimately it found its leader in Andrew
Jackson. More immediately it led to the demand for legislation to
prevent imprisonment for debt, [Footnote: See, for example, Annals
of Cong., 16 Cong., 2 Sess., 1224; McMaster, United States, IV.,
532-535.] to debates over a national bankruptcy law, [Footnote:
Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., 2 Sess., I., 757, 759, 792, 1203 et
passim.] to the proposal of constitutional amendments leading to the
diminution of the powers of the supreme court, to a reassertion of
the sovereignty of the states, [Footnote: See chap. viii., below.]
and to new legislation regarding the public lands and the tariff.
The next few years bore clear evidence of the deep influence which
this period of distress had on the politics and legislation of the



In the dark period of the commercial crisis of 1819, while Congress
was considering the admission of Missouri, the slavery issue flamed
out, and revealed with startling distinctness the political
significance of the institution, fateful and ominous for the nation,
transcending in importance the temporary financial and industrial

The advance of settlement in the United States made the slavery
contest a struggle for power between sections, marching in parallel
columns into the west, each carrying its own system of labor.
[Footnote: For previous questions of slavery, see Channing,
Jeffersonian System (Am. Nation, XII.), chap. viii.] By 1819 the
various states of the north, under favorable conditions of climate
and industrial life, had either completely extinguished slavery or
were in the process of emancipation [Footnote: See map, p. 6.] and
by the Ordinance of 1787 the old Congress had excluded the
institution in the territory north of the Ohio River. Thus Mason and
Dixon's line and the Ohio made a boundary between the slave-holding
and the free streams of population that flowed into the Mississippi
Valley. Not that this line was a complete barrier: the Ordinance of
1787 was not construed to free the slaves already in the old French
towns of the territory; and many southern masters brought their
slaves into Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois by virtue of laws which
provided for them under the fiction of indented servants. [Footnote:
Harris, Negro Servitude in Ill., 10; Durm, Indiana, chaps. ix., x.]
Indeed, several efforts were made in the territory of Indiana at the
beginning of the nineteenth century to rescind the prohibition of
1787; but to this petition Congress, under the strange leadership of
John Randolph, gave a negative; [Footnote: Ibid., chap, xii.;
Hinsdale, Old Northwest, chap, xviii.] and, after a struggle between
the southern slavery and antislavery elements by which the state had
been settled, Indiana entered the Union in 1816 as a free state,
under an agreement not to violate the Ordinance of 1787.

Illinois, on her admission in 1818, also guaranteed the provisions
of the Ordinance of 1787, and, not without a contest, included in
her constitution an article preventing the introduction of slavery,
but so worded that the system of indenture of Negro servants was
continued in a modified form. The issue of slavery still continued
to influence Illinois elections, and, as the inhabitants saw well-
to-do planters pass with their slaves across the state to recruit
the property and population of Missouri, a movement (1823-1824) in
favor of revising their constitution so as to admit slavery required
the most vigorous opposition to hold the state to freedom. The
leader of the antislavery forces in Illinois was a Virginian,
Governor Coles (once private secretary to President Madison), who
had migrated to free his slaves after he became convinced that it
was hopeless to make the fight which Jefferson advised him to carry
on in favor of gradual emancipation in his native state. [Footnote:
Harris, Negro Servitude in III., chap. iv.; Washburne, Coles, chaps,
iii., v.] In both Indiana and Illinois, the strength of the
opposition to slavery and indented servitude came from the poorer
whites, particularly from the Quaker and Baptist elements of the
southern stock, and from the northern settlers.

In Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina, ever since the decline of
the tobacco culture, a strong opposition to slavery had existed,
shown in the votes of those states on the Ordinance of 1787, and in
the fact that as late as 1827 the great majority of the abolition
societies of the United States were to be found in this region.
[Footnote: Dunn, Indiana, 190; Bassettin Johns Hopkins Univ.
Studies, XVI., No. vi.; cf. Hart, Slavery and Abolition (Am. Nation,
XVI.), chap. xi.] But the problem of dealing with the free Negro
weighed upon the south. Even in the north these people were
unwelcome. They frequently became a charge upon the community, and
they were placed under numerous disabilities. [Footnote: McMaster,
United States, IV., 558; Gordy, Political Hist, of U. S., II., 405.]

The idea of deporting freedmen from the United States found support
both among the humanitarians, who saw in it a step towards general
emancipation, and among the slave-holders who viewed the increase of
the free Negroes with apprehension. To promote this solution of the
problem, the Colonization Society [Footnote: McPherson, Liberia;
McMaster, United States, IV., 556 et seq.] was incorporated in 1816,
and it found support, not only from antislavery agitators like
Lundy, who edited the "Genius of Universal Emancipation" at
Baltimore, but also from slave-holders like Jefferson, Clay, and
Randolph. It was the design of this society to found on the coast of
Africa a colony of free blacks, brought from the United States.
Although, after unsuccessful efforts, Liberia was finally
established in the twenties, with the assistance of the general
government (but not under its jurisdiction), it never promoted state
emancipation. Nevertheless, at first it met with much sympathy in
Virginia, where in 1820 the governor proposed to the legislature the
use of one-third of the state revenue as a fund to promote the
emancipation and deportation of the Negroes. [Footnote: Jefferson,
Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 173, 178; Niles' Register, XVII., 363;
King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 342; Adams, Memoirs, IV.,

The unprofitableness of slavery in the border states, where outworn
fields, the decline of tobacco culture, and the competition of
western lands bore hard on the planter, [Footnote: See chap. iv.
above; Hart, Slavery and Abolition (Am. Nation, XVI.), chap. iv.]
now became an argument in favor of, permitting slavery to pass
freely into the new country of the west. Any limitation of the area
of slavery would diminish the value of the slaves and would leave
the old south to support, under increasingly hard conditions, the
redundant and unwelcome slave population in its midst. The hard
times from 1817 to 1820 rendered slave property a still greater
burden to Virginia. Moreover, the increase of the proportion of
slaves to whites, if slavery were confined to the region east of the
Mississippi, might eventually make possible a servile insurrection,
particularly if foreign war should break out. All of these
difficulties would be met, in the opinion of the south, by
scattering the existing slaves and thus mitigating the evil without
increasing the number of those in bondage.

It was seen that the struggle was not simply one of morals and of
rival social and industrial institutions, but was a question of
political power between the two great and opposing sections,
interested, on the one side, in manufacturing and in the raising of
food products under a system of free labor; and, on the other, in
the production of the great staples, cotton, tobacco, and sugar, by
the use of slave labor. Already the southern section had shown its
opposition to tariff and internal improvements, which the majority
of, the northern states vehemently favored. In other words, the
slavery issue was seen to be a struggle for sectional domination.

At the beginning of the nation in 1790, the population of the north
and the south was almost exactly balanced. Steadily, however, the
free states drew ahead, until in 1820 they possessed a population of
5,152,000 against 4,485,000 for the slave-holding states and
territories; and in the House of Representatives, by the operation
of the three-fifths ratio, the free states could muster 105 votes to
but 81 for the slave states. Thus power had passed definitely to the
north in the House of Representatives. The instinct for self-
preservation that led the planters to stand out against an
apportionment in their legislatures which would throw power into the
hands of non-slaveholders now led them to seek for some means to
protect the interests of their minority section in the nation as a
whole. The Senate offered such an opportunity: by the alternate
admission of free and slave states from 1802 to 1818, out of the
twenty-two states of the nation eleven were slave-holding and eleven
free. If the south retained this balance, the Senate could block the
action of the majority which controlled the lower House.

Such was the situation when the application of Missouri for
admission as a state in 1819 presented to Congress the whole
question of slavery beyond the Mississippi, where freedom and
slavery had found a new fighting-ground. East of the Mississippi the
Ohio was a natural dividing-line; farther west there appeared no
obvious boundary between slavery and freedom. By a natural process
of selection, the valleys of the western tributaries of the
Mississippi, as far north as the Arkansas and Missouri, in which
slaves had been allowed while it was a part of French and Spanish
Louisiana (no restraints having been imposed by Congress), received
an increasing proportion of the slave-holding planters. It would, in
the ordinary course of events, become the area of slave states.

The struggle began in the House of Representatives, when the
application of Missouri for statehood was met by an amendment,
introduced by Tallmadge of New York, February 13, 1819, [Footnote:
Annals of Cong., 15 Cong., 2 Sess., I., 1170.] providing that
further introduction of slavery be prohibited and that all children
born within the state after admission should be free at the age of
twenty-five years. [Footnote: See amended form in House Journal, 15
Cong., 2 Sess., 272.] Tallmadge had already showed his attitude on
this question when in 1818 he opposed the admission of Illinois
under its constitution, which seemed to him to make insufficient
barriers to slavery. Brief as was the first Missouri debate, the
whole subject was opened up by arguments to which later discussion
added but little. The speaker, Henry Clay, in spite of the fact that
early in his political career he had favored gradual emancipation in
Kentucky, led the opposition to restriction. His principal reliance
was upon the arguments that the evils of slavery would be mitigated
by diffusion, and that the proposed restriction was
unconstitutional. Tallmadge and Taylor, of New York, combated these
arguments so vigorously and with such bold challenge of the whole
system of slavery in new territories, that Cobb, of Georgia,
declared, "You have kindled a fire which all the waters of the ocean
cannot put out, which seas of blood can only extinguish." [Footnote:
Annals of Cong., 15 Coneg., 2 Sess., I., 1204.]

The first clause of Tallmadge's motion was carried (February 16,
1819) by a vote of 87 to 76, and the second by 82 to 78. [Footnote:
Ibid., 1214.] Taylor was emboldened to offer (February 18) to the
bill for the organization of Arkansas territory an amendment by
which slavery should be excluded, whereupon McLane, of Delaware,
tentatively proposed that a line should be drawn west of the
Mississippi, dividing the territories between freedom and slavery.
Thus early was the whole question presented to Congress. In the
Senate, Tallmadge's amendment was lost (February 27) by a vote of 22
to 16, several northern senators adhering to the south; and Congress
adjourned without action. [Footnote: But Arkansas was organized as a
territory without restriction.]

The issue was then transferred to the people, and in all quarters of
the Union vehement discussions took place upon the question of
imposing an anti-slavery restriction upon Missouri. Mass-meetings in
the northern states took up the agitation, and various state
legislatures, including Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Ohio,
and even the slave state of Delaware, passed resolutions with
substantial unanimity against the further introduction of slaves
into the territories of the United States, and against the admission
of new slave states. Pennsylvania, so long the trusted ally of the
south, invoked her sister states "to refuse to covenant with crime"
by spreading the "cruelties of slavery, from the banks of the
Mississippi to the shores of the Pacific." From the south came
equally insistent protests against restriction. [Footnote: Niles'
Register, XVII., 296, 307, 334, 342-344, 395. 399. 400, 416; Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 4.]

No argument in the debate in 1819 was more effective than the speech
of Rufus King in the Senate, which was widely circulated as a
campaign document expressing the northern view. King's antislavery
attitude, shown as early as 1785, when he made an earnest fight to
secure the exclusion of slavery from the territories, [Footnote:
McLaughlin, Confederation and Constitution (Am. Nation, X.), chap.
vii.] was clearly stated in his constitutional argument in favor of
restriction on Missouri, and his speech may be accepted as typical.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XVII., 215; King, Life and Corresp. of
King, VI., 690.] But it was also the speech of an old-time
Federalist, apprehensive of the growth of western power under
southern leadership. He held that, under the power of making all
needful rules and regulations respecting the territory and other
property of the United States, Congress had the right to prohibit
slavery in the Louisiana purchase, which belonged to the United
States in full dominion. Congress was further empowered, but not
required, to admit new states into the Union. Since the Constitution
contained no express provision respecting slavery in a new state,
Congress could make the perpetual prohibition of slavery a condition
of admission. In support of this argument, King appealed to the
precedent of the Ordinance of 1787, and of the states of Ohio,
Indiana, and Illinois, all admitted on the conditions expressed in
that ordinance. In admitting the state of Louisiana in 1812, a
different group of conditions had been attached, such as the
requirement of the use of the English language in judicial and
legislative proceedings.

The next question was the effect of the Louisiana treaty, by which
the United States had made this promise: "The inhabitants of the
ceded territory shall be incorporated in the Union of the United
States, and admitted as soon as possible, according to the
principles of the Federal constitution, to the enjoyment of all the
rights, advantages and immunities of citizens of the United States;
and in the mean time they shall be maintained and protected in the
free enjoyment of their liberty, property and the religion which
they profess." [Footnote: U. S. Treaties and Conventions, 332.] King
contended that, by the admission of Missouri to the Union, its
inhabitants would obtain all of the "federal" rights which citizens
of the United States derived from its Constitution, though not the
rights derived from the constitutions and laws of the various
states. In his opinion, the term PROPERTY did not describe slaves,
inasmuch as the terms of the treaty should be construed according to
diplomatic usage, and not all nations permitted slavery. In any
case, property acquired since the territory was occupied by the
United States was not included in the treaty, and, therefore, the
prohibition of the future introduction of slaves into Missouri would
not affect its guarantees.

Could Missouri, after admission, revoke the consent to the exclusion
of slavery under its powers as a sovereign state? Such action, King
declared, would be contrary to the obligations of good faith, for
even sovereigns were bound by their engagements. Moreover, the
judicial power of the United States would deliver from bondage any
person detained as a slave in a state which had agreed, as a
condition of admission, that slavery should be excluded.

Having thus set forth the constitutional principles, King next took
up the expediency of the exclusion of slavery from new states. He
struck with firm hand the chord of sectional rivalry in his argument
against the injustice to the north of creating new slave-holding
states, which would have a political representation, under the
"federal ratio," not possessed by the north. Under this provision
for counting three-fifths of the slaves, five free persons in
Virginia (so he argued) had as much power in the choice of
representatives to Congress and in the appointment of presidential
electors as seven free persons in any of the states in which slavery
did not exist. The disproportionate power and influence allowed to
the original slave-holding states was a necessary sacrifice to the
establishment of the Constitution; but the arrangement was limited
to the old thirteen states, and was not applicable to the states
made out of territory since acquired. This argument had been
familiar to New England ever since the purchase of Louisiana.
Finally, he argued that the safety of the Union demanded the
exclusion of slavery west of the Mississippi, where the exposed and
important frontier needed a barrier of free citizens against the
attacks of future assailants.

To the southern mind, King's sectional appeal unblushingly raised
the prospect of the rule of a free majority over a slave-holding
minority, the downfall of the ascendancy so long held by the south,
and the creation of a new Union, in which the western states should
be admitted on terms of subordination to the will of the majority,
whose power would thus become perpetual. [Footnote: King, Life and
Corresp. of King, VI., 205, 267, 279, 288, 329, 339-344, 501;
Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 162, 172, 280; Tyler, Tylers,
I., 316.]

When the next Congress met, in December, 1819, the admission of
Alabama was quickly completed; and the House also passed a bill
admitting Maine to the Union, Massachusetts having agreed to this
division of the ancient commonwealth, on condition that consent
Congress should be obtained prior to March 4, 1820. The Senate,
quick to see the opportunity afforded by the situation, combined the
bill for the admission of Maine with that for the unrestricted
admission of Missouri, a proposition carried (February 16, 1820) by
a vote of 23 to 21. Senator Thomas, who represented Illinois, which,
as we have seen, was divided in its interests on the question of
slavery, and who, as the vote showed, could produce a tie in the
Senate, moved a compromise amendment, providing for the admission of
Missouri as a slave state and for the prohibition of slavery north
of 36 degrees 30' in the rest of the Louisiana purchase; and on the
next day his amendment passed the Senate by a vote of 34 to 10.

The debate in the Senate was marked by another speech of Rufus King,
just re-elected a senator from New York by an almost unanimous vote.
With this prestige, and the knowledge that the states of
Pennsylvania and New York stood behind him, he reiterated his
arguments with such power that John Quincy Adams, who listened to
the debate, wrote in his diary that "the great slave-holders in the
House gnawed their lips and clenched their fists as they heard him."
[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 522; see Cong. Globe, 30 Cong., 2
Sess., App. 63-67.]

The case for the south was best presented by William Pinkney, of
Maryland, the leader of the American bar, a man of fashion, but an
orator of the first rank. His argument, on lines that the debates
had made familiar, was stated with such eloquence, force, and
graphic power that it produced the effect of a new presentation.
Waiving the question whether Congress might refuse admission to a
state, he held that, if it were admitted, it was admitted into a
union of equals, and hence could not be subjected to any special
restriction. [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., 1 Sess., I., 389
et seq.] Without denying the danger of the extension of slavery, he
argued that it was not for Congress to stay the course of this dark
torrent. "If you have power," said he, "to restrict the new states
on admission, you may squeeze a new-born sovereign state to the size
of a pigmy." There would be nothing to hinder Congress "from
plundering power after power at the expense of the new states,"
until they should be left empty shadows of domestic sovereignty, in
a union between giants and dwarfs, between power and feebleness. In
vivid oratory he conjured up this vision of an unequal union, into
which the new state would enter, "shorn of its beams," a mere
servant of the majority. From the point of view of the political
theory of a confederation, his contention had force, and the hot-
tempered west was not likely to submit to an inferior status in the
Union. Nevertheless, the debates and votes in the Constitutional
Convention of 1787 seem to show that the fathers of the Constitution
intended to leave Congress free to impose limitations on the states
at admission. [Footnote: Elliot, Debates, V., 492.]

In the mean time, the House of Representatives was continuing the
discussion on the old lines. Although the arguments brought out
little that had not been stated in the first Missouri debate, they
were restated day after day with an amplitude and a bitterness of
feeling that aggravated the hostility between the rival forces. Even
under this provocation, most southern members expressed their
opinions on the morality and expediency of slavery in language that
affords a strange contrast to their later utterances: in almost
every case they lamented its existence and demanded its dispersion
throughout the west as a means of alleviating their misfortune.
Although most of the men who spoke on the point were from the
regions where cotton was least cultivated, yet even Reid, of
Georgia, likened the south to an unfortunate man who "wears a cancer
in his bosom." [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., 1 Sess., I.,
1025.] Tyler of Virginia, afterwards president of the United States,
characterized slavery as a dark cloud, and asked, "Will you permit
the lightnings of its wrath to break upon the South when by the
interposition of a wise system of legislation you may reduce it to a
summer's cloud?" [Footnote: Ibid., II., 1391.] John Randolph, the
ultra-southerner, was quoted as saying that all the misfortunes of
his life were light in the balance when compared with the single
misfortune of having been born a master of slaves.

In addition to the argument of "mitigation by diffusion," the south
urged the injustice of excluding its citizens from the territories
by making it impossible for the southern planter to migrate thither
with his property. On the side of the north, it was argued with
equal energy that the spread of slaves into the west would
inevitably increase their numbers and strengthen the institution.
Since free labor was unable to work in the midst of slave labor,
northern men would be effectively excluded from the territories
which might be given over to slavery. Economic law, it was urged,
would make it almost certain that, in order to supply the vast area
which it was proposed to devote to slavery, the African slave-trade
would be reopened. As the struggle waxed hot, as the arguments
brought out with increasing clearness the fundamental differences
between the sections, threats of disunion were freely exchanged.
[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 13, 53; Benton, Abridgment of
Debates, XIII., 607.] Even Clay predicted the existence of several
new confederacies. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 526.] Nor were
the extremists of the north unwilling to accept this alternative.
[Footnote:  King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 274, 286, 287,
387.] But the danger of southern secession was diminished because
Monroe was ready to veto any bill which excluded slavery from
Missouri. [Footnote: Cong. Globe, 30 Cong., 2 Sess., App. 67.] While
still engaged in its own debates, the House received the compromise
proposal from the Senate. At first the majority remained firm and
refused to accept it. [Footnote: Woodburn, in Am. Hist. Assoc.,
Report 1893, p. 251-297.] March 1, 1820, the House passed its own
bill imposing the restriction on Missouri, by a vote of 91 to 82. By
the efforts of the compromisers, however, a committee of conference
was arranged, which on the very next day resulted in the surrender
of the House. The vote on striking out the restriction on Missouri
was 90 to 87. New England gave 7 ayes to 33 nays; the middle states,
8 to 46; the south cast 58 votes for striking out, and none against
it; the northwest gave all its 8 votes against striking out the
restriction; while the 17 southwestern votes were solidly in favor
of admitting Missouri as a slave state.

Thus, while the southern phalanx in opposition remained firm, enough
members were won over from the northern ranks to defeat the
restrictionists. Some of these deserters [Footnote: See King, Life
and Corresp. of King, VI., 291, 329; Benton, View, I., 10; Adams,
Memoirs, V., 15, 307. Randolph applied to them the term
"doughfaces."] from the northern cause were influenced by the
knowledge that the admission of Maine would fail without this
concession; others, by the constitutional argument; others, by the
fear of disunion; and still others, by the apprehension that the
unity of the Democratic party was menaced by the new sectional
alignment, which included among its leaders men who had been
prominent in the councils of the Federalists. By the final solution,
it was agreed (134 to 42) to admit Missouri as a slave state and
Maine as a free state; while all of the rest of the territory,
possessed by the United States west of the Mississippi and north of
36 degrees 30' was pledged to freedom. Yet the fate of the measure
was uncertain, for some of Monroe's southern friends strongly urged
him still to veto the compromise. [Footnote: Cong. Globe, 30 Cong.,
2 Sess., App. 64.] The president submitted to the cabinet the
question whether Congress had the right to prohibit slavery in a
territory, and whether the section of the Missouri bill which
interdicted slavery forever in the territory north of 36 degrees 30'
was applicable only to the territorial condition, or also to states
made from the territory. John Quincy Adams notes in his diary that
"it was unanimously agreed that Congress have the power to prohibit
slavery in the Territories"; though he adds that neither Crawford,
Calhoun, nor Wirt could find any express power to that effect given
in the Constitution. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 5.] In order to
avoid the difficulty arising from the fact that Adams alone believed
the word "forever" to apply to states as well as territories, the
president modified the question so that all would be able to answer
that the act was constitutional, leaving each member to construe the
section to suit himself.

Although apparently the Missouri struggle was thus brought to a
conclusion, it is necessary to take note of two succeeding episodes
in the contest, which immediately revived the whole question,
embittered the antagonism, threatened the Union, and were settled by
new compromises. In her constitution, Missouri not only incorporated
guarantees of a slavery system, but also a provision against the
admission of free Negroes to the state. Application for admission to
the Union under this constitution in the fall of 1820 brought on a
contest perhaps more heated and more dangerous to the Union than the
previous struggle. Holding that Missouri's clause against free
Negroes infringed the provision of the federal Constitution
guaranteeing the rights of citizens of the respective states,
northern leaders reopened the whole question by refusing to vote for
the admission of Missouri with the obnoxious clause. Again the north
revealed its mastery of the House, and the south its control of the
Senate, and a deadlock followed. Under the skilful management of
Clay, a new compromise was framed, by which Missouri was required,
through her legislature, to promise that the objectionable clause
should never be construed to authorize the passage of any laws by
which any citizen of either of the states of the Union should be
excluded from the enjoyment of any of the privileges and immunities
to which such citizen was entitled under the Constitution of the
United States. This Missouri accepted, but the legislature somewhat
contemptuously added that it was without power to bind the state.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XX., 388, cf. 300.]

While this debate was in progress, and the problem of the status of
Missouri, which had already established a constitution and claimed
to be a state, was under consideration, the question of counting the
Missouri vote in the presidential election of 1820 was raised. For
this a third compromise was framed by Clay, by which the result of
the election was stated as it would be with and without Missouri's
vote. Since Monroe had been elected by a vote all but unanimous, the
result was in either case the same; this theoretical question,
nevertheless, was fraught with dangerous possibilities. Missouri was
finally admitted by the proclamation of President Monroe, dated
August 10, 1821, more than three years from the first application
for statehood.

In a large view of American history, the significance of this great
struggle cannot be too highly emphasized. Although the danger passed
by and the ocean became placid, yet the storm in many ways changed
the coast-line of American politics and broke new channels for the
progress of the nation. The future had been revealed to far-sighted
statesmen, who realized that this was but the beginning, not the
end, of the struggle. "This momentous question," wrote Jefferson,
"like a fire bell in the night, awakened and filled me with terror.
I considered it at once as the knell of the Union. It is hushed,
indeed, for the moment. But this is a reprieve only, not a final
sentence. A geographical line, coinciding with a marked principle,
moral and political, once conceived and held up to the angry
passions of men, will never be obliterated; and every new irritation
will mark it deeper and deeper." [Footnote: Jefferson, Writings
(Ford's ed.), X., 157.]

John Quincy Adams relates a contemporaneous conversation with
Calhoun, in which the latter took the ground that, if a dissolution
of the Union should follow, the south would be compelled to form an
alliance, offensive and defensive, with Great Britain, though he
admitted that it would be returning pretty much to the colonial
state. When Adams, with unconscious prophecy of Sherman's march
through Georgia, pressed Calhoun with the question whether the
north, cut off from its natural outlet upon the ocean, "would fall
back upon its rocks bound hand and foot, to starve, or whether it
would not retain its powers of locomotion to move southward by
land," Calhoun answered that the southern states would find it
necessary to make their communities military. [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, IV., 530, 531.]

To Adams himself the present question was but a "title page to a
great tragic volume." He believed that, if dissolution of the Union
should result from the slavery question, it would be followed by
universal emancipation of the slaves, and he was ready to
contemplate such a dissolution of the Union, upon a point involving
slavery and no other, believing that "the Union might then be
reorganized on the fundamental principle of emancipation." "This
object," wrote he, "is vast in its compass, awful in its prospects,
sublime and beautiful in its issue. A life devoted to it would be
nobly spent or sacrificed." [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 531.]
Looking forward to civil war, he declared: "So glorious would be its
final issue, that as God shall judge me I do not say that it is not
to be desired." [Footnote: Ibid., V., 210.] But as yet he confided
these thoughts to his diary. The south was far from contented with
the compromise, and her leading statesmen, Calhoun especially, came
bitterly to regret both the concession in the matter of admitting
federal control over slavery in the territories, and the division of
the Louisiana purchase into spheres of influence which left to the
slave-holding section that small apex of the triangle practically
embraced in Arkansas. While the north received an area capable of
being organized into many free states, the south could expect from
the remaining territory awarded her only one state.

Among the immediate effects of the contest was its influence upon
Monroe, who was the more ready to relinquish the American claim to
Texas in the negotiations over Florida, because he feared that the
acquisition of this southern province would revive the antagonism of
the northern antislavery forces. [Footnote: Monroe, Writings, VI.,
127; cf. Adams, Memoirs, V., 25, 54, 68.]

The south learned also the lesson that slavery needed defense
against the power of the majority, and that it must shape its
political doctrine and its policy to this end. But it would be a
mistake to emphasize too strongly the immediate effect in this
respect. Slavery was not yet accepted as the foundation of southern
social and economic life. The institution was still mentioned with
regret by southern leaders, and there were still efforts in the
border states to put it in the process of extinction. South Carolina
leaders were still friendly to national power, and for several years
the ruling party in that state deprecated appeals to state
sovereignty. [Footnote: See chap, xviii. below.] In the next few
years other questions, of an economic and judicial nature, were even
more influential, as a direct issue, than the slavery question. But
the economic life of the south was based on slavery, and the section
became increasingly conscious that the current of national
legislation was shaped by the majority against their interests.
Their political alliances in the north had failed them in the time
of test, and the Missouri question disclosed the possibility of a
new organization of parties threatening that southern domination
which had swayed the Union for the past twenty years. [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, IV., 529; King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 501;
Jefferson, Writings, X., 175, 193 n.; cf. chap. xi. below; Hart,
Slavery and Abolition (Am. Nation, XVI.), chap, xviii.]

The slavery struggle derived its national significance from the
west, into which expanding sections carried warring institutions.


PARTY POLITICS (1820-1822)

To the superficial observer, politics might have seemed never more
tranquil than when, in 1820, James Monroe received all but one of
the electoral votes for his second term as president of the United
States. One New Hampshire elector preferred John Quincy Adams,
although he was not a candidate, and this deprived Monroe of ranking
with Washington in the unanimity of official approval. But in truth
the calm was deceptive. The election of 1820 was an armistice rather
than a real test of political forces. The forming party factions
were not yet ready for the final test of strength, most of the
candidates were members of the cabinet, and the reelection of
Monroe, safe, conciliatory, and judicious, afforded an opportunity
for postponing the issue.

As we have seen, the Missouri contest had in it the possibility of a
revolutionary division of the Republican party into two parties on
sectional lines. The aged Jefferson, keen of scent for anything that
threatened the ascendancy of the triumphant democracy, saw in the
dissolution of the old alliance between Virginia and the
"fanaticized" Pennsylvania, [Footnote: Jefferson, Writings (Ford's
ed.), X., 161, 171, 172, 177, 179, 192, 193 n., 279; King, Life and
Corresp. of King, VI., 279, 282, 290: Cong. Globe, 30 Cong., 2
Sess., App. 63-67.] in the heat of the Missouri conflict, the menace
of a revived Federalist party, and the loss of Virginia's northern
following. So hotly did Virginia resent the Missouri Compromise,
that while the question was still pending, in February, 1820, her
legislative caucus, which had assembled to nominate presidential
electors, indignantly adjourned on learning that Monroe favored the
measure. "I trust in God," said H. St. George Tucker, "if the
president does sign a bill to that effect, the Southern people will
be able to find some man who has not committed himself to our foes;
for such are, depend on it, the Northern Politicians." [Footnote:
William and Mary College Quarterly, X., 11, 15.] But the sober
second thought of Virginia sustained Monroe. On the other side,
Rufus King believed that the issue of the Missouri question would
settle "forever the dominion of the Union." "Old Mr. Adams," said
he, "as he is the first, will on this hypothesis be the last
President from a free state." [Footnote: King, Life and Corresp. of
King, 267; cf. Adams, Memoirs, IV., 528.]

The truth is that the individual interests of the south were
stronger in opposing than those of the north in supporting a
limitation of slavery; [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 533.] the
northern phalanx had hardly formed before it began to dissolve.
[Footnote: Benton, Thirty Years' View, I., 10.] Nevertheless, the
Missouri question played some part in the elections in most of the
states. In Pennsylvania, under the leadership of Duane, the editor
of the Aurora, electors favorable to Clinton were nominated on an
antislavery ticket, [Footnote: Niles' Register, XIX., 129; National
Advocate, October 27, 1820; Franklin Gazette, October 25, November
8, 1820 (election returns); Ames, State Docs. on Federal Relations,
No. 5, p. 5.] but, outside of Philadelphia and the adjacent
district, this ticket received but slight support. With few
exceptions, the northern congressmen who had voted with the south
failed of re-election.

The elections in the various states in this year showed more
political division than was revealed by the vote for president, and
they showed that in state politics the Federalist party was by no
means completely extinct. In the congressional elections the flood
of Republicanism left only isolated islands of Federalism
unsubmerged. In Massachusetts eight of the thirteen members
professed this political faith; New York returned some half-dozen
men whose affiliations were with the same party; from Pennsylvania
came a somewhat larger number; and they numbered nearly half of the
delegation of Maryland. The cities of New York and Philadelphia were
represented by Federalists, and there were three or four other
districts, chiefly in New England, which adhered to the old party.
There were also a few congressmen from the south who had been
members of this organization. On the whole, however, the Federalists
awaited the new development of parties, determined to secure the
best terms from those to whom they should transfer their allegiance.
In New England, as has already been pointed out, [Footnote: See
chap. ii. above.] the toleration movement was completing its work of
transferring power to democracy.

More important than local issues or the death throes of federalism,
was the democratic tendency revealed in the constitutional
conventions of this period. Between 1816 and 1830, ten states either
established new constitutions or revised their old ones. In this the
influence of the new west was peculiarly important. All of the new
states which were formed in that region, after the War of 1812, gave
evidence in their constitutions of the democratic spirit of the
frontier. With the exception of Mississippi, where the voter was
obliged either to be a tax-payer or a member of the militia, all the
western states entered the Union with manhood suffrage, and all of
them, in contrast with the south, from which their settlers had
chiefly been drawn, provided that apportionment of the legislature
should be based upon the white population, thus accepting the
doctrine of the rule of the majority rather than that of property.
As the flood of population moved towards the west and offered these
attractive examples of democratic growth, the influence reacted on
the older states. In her constitution of 1818, Connecticut gave the
franchise to tax-payers or members of the militia, as did
Massachusetts and New York in their constitutions of 1821. Maine
provided in her constitution of 1820 for manhood suffrage, but by
this time there was but slight difference between manhood suffrage
and one based upon tax-paying.

Webster in Massachusetts and Chancellor Kent in New York viewed with
alarm the prospect that freehold property should cease to be the
foundation of government. Kent particularly warned the landed class
that "one master capitalist with his one hundred apprentices, and
journeymen, and agents, and dependents, will bear down at the polls
an equal number of farmers of small estates in his vicinity, who
cannot safely unite for their common defense." [Footnote: Carter and
Stone, Reports of the Proceedings and Debates of the Convention of
1821, 222.] It was the new counties of New York, particularly those
of the western and northeastern frontier, which were the stronghold
of the reform movement in that state. The abolition of the council
of appointments and the council of revision by the New York
convention contributed to the transfer of power to the people. But
under the leadership of Van Buren a group of politicians, dubbed
"The Albany Regency," controlled the political machinery as
effectively as before. [Footnote: McMaster, United States, V., 373-
432; ibid., Rights of Man, 61; MacDonald, Jacksonian Democracy (Am.
Nation, XV.), chap. iv.]

The campaign for the presidency of 1824 may be said to have begun as
early as 1816. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 89.] Adams observed in
1818 that the government was assuming daily the character of cabal,
"and preparation, not for the next Presidential election, but for
the one after"; [Footnote: Ibid., IV., 193.] and by 1820, when the
political sea appeared so placid, and parties had apparently
dissolved, bitter factional fights between the friends of the rival
candidates constituted the really significant indications of
American politics. From the details of the personal struggles
(usually less important to the student of party history) one must
learn the tendency towards the reappearance of parties in this
period, when idealists believed that all factions had been fused
into one triumphant organization. In all of the great sections,
candidates appeared, anxious to consolidate the support of their own
section and to win a following in the nation. It is time that we
should survey these men, for the personal traits of the aspirants
for the presidency had a larger influence than ever before or since
in the history of the country. Moreover, we are able to see in these
candidates the significant features of the sections from which they

New England was reluctantly and slowly coming to the conclusion that
John Quincy Adams was the only available northern candidate. Adams
did not fully represent the characteristics of his section, for he
neither sprang from the democracy of the interior of New England nor
did he remain loyal to the Federalist ideas that controlled the
commercial interests of the coast. Moreover, of all the statesmen
whom the nation produced, he had had the largest opportunity to make
a comparative study of government. As an eleven-year-old boy, he
went with his father to Paris in 1778, and from then until 1817,
when he became Monroe's secretary of state, nearly half his time was
spent at European courts. He served in France, Holland, Sweden,
Russia, Prussia, and England, and had been senator of the United
States from Massachusetts.

Thus Adams entered on the middle period of his career, a man of
learning and broad culture, rich in experience of national affairs,
familiar with the centers of Old-World civilization and with methods
of European administration. He had touched life too broadly, in too
many countries, to be provincial in his policy. In the minds of a
large and influential body of his fellow-citizens, the Federalists,
he was an apostate, for in the days of the embargo he had warned
Jefferson of the temper of his section, had resigned, and had been
read out of the party. The unpopularity, as well as the fame, of his
father, was the heritage of the son. Perhaps the most decisive
indication of the weakening of sectional bias by his foreign
training is afforded by his diplomatic policy. An expansionist by
nature, he had been confirmed in the faith by his training in
foreign courts. "If we are not taken for Romans we shall be taken
for Jews," he exclaimed to one who questioned the wisdom of the bold
utterances of his diplomatic correspondence.

In one important respect Adams was the personification of his
section. He was a Puritan, and his whole career was deeply affected
by the fact. A man of method and regularity, tireless in his work
(for he rose before the dawn and worked till midnight), he never had
a childhood and never tried to achieve self-forgetfulness. His
diary, printed in twelve volumes, is a unique document for the study
of the Puritan in politics. Not that it was an entirely unreserved
expression of his soul, for he wrote with a consciousness that
posterity would read the record, and its pages are a compound of
apparently spontaneous revelation of his inmost thought and of
silence upon subjects of which we would gladly know more. He had the
Puritan's restraint, self-scrutiny, and self-condemnation. "I am,"
he writes, "a man of reserved, cold, austere, and forbidding
manners." Nor can this estimate be pronounced unjust. He was a
lonely man, communing with his soul in his diary more than with a
circle of admiring friends. It was not easy for men to love John
Quincy Adams. The world may respect the man who regulates his course
by a daily dead-reckoning, but it finds it easier to make friends
with him who stumbles towards rectitude by the momentum of his own
nature. Popularity, in any deep sense, was denied him. This
deprivation he repaid by harsh, vindictive, and censorious judgments
upon his contemporaries, and by indifference to popular prejudices.
With the less lovely qualities of the Puritan aggravated by his own
critical nature, Adams found himself in a struggle for the
presidency against some of the most engaging personalities in
American history. He must win over his enemies in New England and
attach that section to his fortunes; he must find friends in the
middle states, conciliate the south, and procure a following in the
west, where Clay, the Hotspur of debate, with all the power of the
speakership behind him, and Jackson, "Old Hickory," the hero of New
Orleans, contested the field. And all the time he must satisfy his
conscience, and reach his goal by the craft and strength of his
intellect rather than by the arts of popular management. No
statesman ever handled the problems of his public career with a
keener understanding of the conditions of success.

The middle region was too much divided by the game of politics
played by her multitude of minor leaders to unite upon a favorite
son in this campaign; but De Witt Clinton, finding elements of
strength in the prestige which his successful advocacy of the Erie
Canal had brought to him throughout the region where internal
improvements were popular, and relying upon his old connections with
the Federalists, watched events with eager eye, waiting for an
opportunity which never came. Although the south saw in Rufus King's
advocacy of the exclusion of slavery from Missouri a deep design to
win the presidency by an antislavery combination of the northern
states, there was little ground for this belief. In truth, the
middle region was merely the fighting-ground for leaders in the
other sections.

In the south, Calhoun and Crawford were already contending for the
mastery. Each of them represented fundamental tendencies in the
section. Born in Virginia in 1772, Crawford had migrated with his
father in early childhood to South Carolina, and soon after to
Georgia. [Footnote: Phillips, "Georgia and State Rights," in Am.
Hist. Assoc., Report 1901, II., 95; Cobb, Leisure Labors; Miller,
Bench and Bar of Georgia; West, "Life and Times of William H.
Crawford," in National Portrait Gallery, IV.; Adams, Life of
Gallatin. 598.] Here he became the leader of the Virginia element
against the interior democracy. But in his coarse strength and
adaptability the burly Georgian showed the impress which frontier
influences had given to his state. His career in national politics
brought him strange alliances. This Georgia candidate had been no
mere subject of the Virginia dynasty, for he supported John Adams in
his resistance to France in 1798; challenged the administration of
Jefferson by voting with the Federalists in the United States Senate
against the embargo; and ridiculed the ambiguous message of Madison
when the issue of peace or war with Great Britain was under
consideration. A fearless supporter of the recharter of the national
bank, he had championed the doctrine of implied powers and denied
the right of a state to resist the laws of Congress except by
changing its representation or appealing to the sword under the
right of revolution.

Nevertheless, in the period of this volume, Crawford joined the
ranks of the southerners who demanded a return to strict
construction and insistence on state rights. In the congressional
caucus of 1816, he obtained 54 votes for the presidency against 65
for Monroe. Had not the influence of Madison been thrown for the
latter, it seems probable that Crawford would have obtained the
nomination; but his strength in building up a following in Congress
was much greater than his popularity with the people at large.
Controlling the patronage of the treasury department, he enlarged
his political influence. As the author of the four-years'-tenure-of-
office act, in 1820, he has been vehemently criticized as a founder
of the spoils system. But there are reasons for thinking that
Crawford's advocacy of this measure was based upon considerations of
efficiency at least as much as those of politics, [Footnote: Fish,
Civil Service and Patronage, 66 et seq.] and the conduct of his
department was marked by sagacity. The administration of such a man
would probably have been characterized by an accommodating spirit
which would have carried on the traditions of Monroe.

In the career of Calhoun are strikingly exhibited the changing
characteristics of the south in this era. His grandfather was a
Scotch-Irishman who came to Pennsylvania with the emigration of that
people in the first half of the eighteenth century, and thence
followed the stream of settlement that passed up the Great Valley
and into South Carolina to the frontier, from which men like Daniel
Boone crossed the mountains to the conquest of Kentucky and
Tennessee. [Footnote: Cf. Howard, Preliminaries of the Revolution
(Am. Nation, VIII.), chap. xiii.] The Calhoun family were frontier
Indian fighters, but, instead of crossing the mountains as did
Andrew Jackson, Calhoun remained to grow up with his section and to
share its changes from a community essentially western to a cotton-
planting and slave-holding region. This is the clew to his career.

In his speech in the House of Representatives in 1817, on internal
improvements, Calhoun warned his colleagues against "a low, sordid,
selfish, and sectional spirit," and declared that "in a country so
extensive, and so various in its interests, what is necessary for
the common good, may apparently be opposed to the interests of
particular sections. It must be submitted to as the condition of our
greatness." [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 14 Cong., 2 Sess., 854,
855.] This was the voice of the nationalistic west, as well as that
of South Carolina in Calhoun's young manhood.

In view of his later career, it is significant that many of those
who described him in these youthful years of his nationalistic
policy found in him a noticeable tendency to rash speculation and
novelty. "As a politician," said Senator Mills, of Massachusetts,
about 1823, he is "too theorizing, speculative, and metaphysical,--
magnificent in his views of the powers and capacities of the
government, and of the virtue, intelligence, and wisdom of the
PEOPLE. He is in favor of elevating, cherishing, and increasing all
the institutions of the government, and of a vigorous and energetic
administration of it. From his rapidity of thought, he is often
wrong in his conclusions, and his theories are sometimes wild,
extravagant, and impractical. He has always claimed to be, and is,
of the Democratic party, but of a very different class from that of
Crawford; more like Adams, and his schemes are sometimes denounced
by his party as ultra-fanatical." [Footnote: Mass. Hist. Soc.,
Proceedings, XIX., 37 (1881-1882).]

Another contemporary, writing prior to 1824, declared: "He wants, I
think, consistency and perseverance of mind, and seems incapable of
long-continued and patient investigation. What he does not see at
the first examination, he seldom takes pains to search for; but
still the lightning glance of his mind, and the rapidity with which
he analyzes, never fail to furnish him with all that may be
necessary for his immediate purposes. In his legislative career,
which, though short, was uncommonly luminous, his love of novelty,
and his apparent solicitude to astonish were so great, that he has
occasionally been known to go beyond even the dreams of political
visionaries, and to propose schemes which were in their nature
impracticable or injurious, and which he seemed to offer merely for
the purpose of displaying the affluence of his mind, and the
fertility of his ingenuity." [Footnote: Quoted by Hodgson, Letters
from North Am., I., 81.] "Calhoun," said William Wirt, in 1824,
"advised me the other day to study less and trust more to genius;
and I believe the advice is sound. He has certainly practiced on his
own precepts, and has become, justly, a distinguished man. It may do
very well in politics, where a proposition has only to be compared
with general principles with which the politician is familiar."
[Footnote: Kennedy, William Wirt, II., 143; other views of Calhoun
in MacDonald, Jacksonian Democracy, chaps, v., ix.; Hart, Slavery
and Abolition, chap. xix.; Garrison, Westward Extension (Am. Nation,
XV., XVI., XVII.).]

At the beginning of the campaign, Calhoun was the confidant and
friend of Adams, apparently considering the alternative of throwing
his influence in the latter's favor, if it proved impossible to
realize his own aspirations.

From beyond the Alleghenies came two candidates who personified the
forces of their section. We can see the very essence of the west in
Henry Clay and Andrew Jackson. Clay was a Kentuckian, with the
characteristics of his state; but, in a larger sense, he represented
the stream of migration which had occupied the Ohio Valley during
the preceding half-century. This society was one which, in its
composition, embraced elements of the middle region as well as of
the south. It tended towards freedom, but had slaves in its midst,
and had been accustomed, through experience, to adjust relations
between slavery and free labor by a system of compromise.
Economically, it was in need of internal improvements and the
development of manufactures to afford a home market. It had the
ideal of American expansion, and in earlier days vehemently demanded
the control of the Mississippi and the expulsion of the Spaniard
from the coasts of the Gulf. In the War of 1812 it sent its sons to
destroy English influence about the Great Lakes and had been
ambitious to conquer Canada.

It is an evidence of the rapidity with which the west stamped itself
upon its colonists, that although Clay was born, and bred to the
law, in Virginia, he soon became the mouth-piece of these western
forces. In his personality, also, he reflected many of the traits of
this region. Kentucky, ardent in its spirit, not ashamed of a strain
of sporting blood, fond of the horse-race, partial to its whiskey,
ready to "bluff" in politics as in poker, but sensitive to honor,
was the true home of Henry Clay. To a Puritan like John Quincy
Adams, Clay was, "in politics, as in private life, essentially a
gamester."[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 59.] But if the Puritan
mind did not approve of Henry Clay, multitudes of his fellow-
countrymen in other sections did. There was a charm about him that
fastened men to him. He was "Harry of the West," an impetuous,
willful, high-spirited, daring, jealous, but, withal, a lovable man.
He had the qualities of leadership; was ambitious, impulsive, often
guided by his intuitions and his sensibilities, but, at the same
time, an adroit and bold champion of constructive legislation. He
knew, too, the time for compromise and for concession. Perhaps he
knew it too well; for, although no statesman of this era possessed
more courageous initiative and constructive power, his tact and his
powers of management were such that his place in history is quite as
much that of the "great compromiser" as it is that of the author of
the "American system."

It is not too much to say that Clay made the speakership one of the
important American institutions. He was the master of the House of
Representatives, shaping its measures by the appointment of his
committees and his parliamentary management.[Footnote: Follett,
Speaker of the House, pp. 41-46.] By the period of our survey, with
the power of this office behind him, Clay had fashioned a set of
American political issues reflective of western and middle-state
ideas, and had made himself a formidable rival in the presidential
struggle. He had caught the self-confidence, the continental
aspirations, the dash and impetuosity of the west. But he was also,
as a writer of the time declared, "able to captivate high and low,
l'homme du salon and the 'squatter' in the Western wilderness." He
was a mediator between east and west, between north and south--the
"great conciliator." [Footnote: Grund, Aristocracy in America, II.,
213. For other views of Clay, cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality, chap.
xii.; MacDonald, Jacksonian Democracy, chap. xi.; Garrison, Westward
Extension, chap. iii. (Am. Nation, XIII., XV., XVII.).]

If Henry Clay was one of the favorites of the west, Andrew Jackson
was the west itself. While Clay was able to voice, with statesman-
like ability, the demand for economic legislation to promote her
interests, and while he exercised an extraordinary fascination by
his personal magnetism and his eloquence, he never became the hero
of the great masses of the west; he appealed rather to the more
intelligent--to the men of business and of property. Andrew Jackson
was the very personification of the contentious, nationalistic
democracy of the interior. He was born, in 1767, of Scotch-Irish
parents, who had settled near the boundary-line between North and
South Carolina, not far from the similar settlements from which,
within a few years of Jackson's birth, Daniel Boone and Robertson
went forth to be the founders of Kentucky and Tennessee. In 1788,
with a caravan of emigrants, Jackson crossed the Alleghenies to
Nashville, Tennessee, then an outpost of settlement still exposed to
the incursions of Indians. During the first seven or eight years of
his residence he was public prosecutor--an office that called for
nerve and decision, rather than legal acumen, in that turbulent

The appearance of this frontiersman on the floor of Congress was an
omen full of significance. He reached Philadelphia at the close of
Washington's administration, having ridden on horseback nearly eight
hundred miles to his destination. Gallatin (himself a western
Pennsylvanian) afterwards graphically described Jackson, as he
entered the halls of Congress, as "a tall, lank, uncouth-looking
personage, with long locks of hair hanging over his face, and a cue
down his back tied in an eel-skin; his dress singular, his manners
and deportment those of a rough backwoodsman."[Footnote: Hildreth,
United States, iv., 692.] Jefferson afterwards testified to Webster:
"His passions are terrible. When I was President of the Senate, he
was a Senator, and he could never speak, on account of the rashness
of his feelings. I have seen him attempt it repeatedly, and as often
choke with rage."[Footnote: Webster, Writings (National ed.), XVII.,
371.] At length the frontier, in the person of its leader, had found
a place in the government. This six-foot backwoodsman, angular,
lantern-jawed, and thin, with blue eyes that blazed on occasion;
this choleric, impetuous, Scotch-Irish leader of men; this expert
duelist and ready fighter; this embodiment of the contentious,
vehement, personal west, was in politics to stay.[Footnote: For
other appreciations, see Babcock, Am. Nationality, chap, xvii.;
MacDonald, Jacksonian Democracy, chaps, ii., xviii.(Am. Nation,
XIII., XV.).] In the War of 1812, by the defeat of the Indians of
the Gulf plains, he made himself the conqueror of a new province for
western settlement, and when he led his frontier riflemen to the
victory of New Orleans he became the national hero, the self-made
man, the incarnation of the popular ideal of democracy. The very
rashness and arbitrariness which his Seminole campaign displayed
appealed to the west, for he went to his object with the relentless
directness of a frontiersman. This episode gave to Adams the
opportunity to write his masterly state paper defending the actions
of the general. But Henry Clay, seeing, perhaps, in the rising star
of the frontier military hero a baneful omen to his own career, and
hoping to break the administration forces by holding the government
responsible for Jackson's actions, led an assault upon him in the
Seminole debates on the floor of the House of
Representatives.[Footnote: Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation,
XIII.), chap. xvii.] Leaving Tennessee when he heard of the attack
which was meditated against him, the general rushed (1819) to this
new field of battle, and had the satisfaction of winning what he
regarded as "the greatest victory he ever obtained"--a triumph on
every count of Clay's indictment. This contest Jackson considered
"the Touchstone of the election of the next president."[Footnote: N.
Y. Publ. Library, Bulletin, IV., 160, 161; Parton, Jackson, II.,
chap. xl.] From this time the personality of the "Old Hero" was as
weighty a factor in

American politics as the tariff or internal improvements. He had now
outgrown the uncouthness of his earlier days and had become stately
and dignified in his manner. Around this unique personality there
began to gather all those democratic forces which we have noted as
characteristic of the interior of the country, reinforced by the
democracy of the cities, growing into self-consciousness and power.
A new force was coming into American life. This fiery Tennesseean
was becoming the political idol of a popular movement which swept
across all sections, with but slight regard to their separate
economic interests. The rude, strong, turbulent democracy of the
west and of the country found in him its natural leader.

All these candidates and the dominant element in every section
professed the doctrines of republicanism; but what were the orthodox
tenets of republicanism at the end of the rule of the Virginia
dynasty? To this question different candidates and different
sections gave conflicting answers. Out of their differences there
was already the beginning of a new division of parties.

The progress of events gave ample opportunity for collision between
the various factions. The crisis of 1819 and the depression of the
succeeding years worked, on the whole, in the interests of Jackson,
inclining the common people to demand a leader and a new
dispensation. Not, perhaps, without a malicious joy did John Quincy
Adams write in his diary at that time that "Crawford has labors and
perils enough before him in the management of the finances for the
three succeeding years."[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 391.] From
the negotiation of the Florida treaty in 1819, and especially from
the relinquishment by Spain of her claims to the Pacific coast north
of the forty-second parallel, the secretary of state expected to
reap a harvest of political advantage.[Footnote: Ibid., IV., 238,
273, 451, V., 53, 109, 290; Monroe, Writings, VI., 127.] But Clay,
as well as Benton and the west in general, balked his hopes by
denouncing the treaty as an abandonment of American rights; and,
although Adams won friends in the south by the acquisition of
Florida, Spain's delay of two years in the ratification of the
treaty so far neutralized the credit that the treaty was, after all,
but a feast of Tantalus. In these intervening years, when the United
States was several times on the verge of forcibly occupying Florida,
the possibility of a war with Spain, into which European powers
might be drawn, increased the importance of General Jackson as a
figure in the eyes of the public.

Next the Missouri controversy, like "a flaming sword," [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, V., 91.]cut in every direction and affected the
future of all the presidential candidates. The hope of Crawford to
reap the reward of his renunciation in 1816 was based, not only upon
his moderation in his earlier career, which had brought him friends
among the Federalists, but also upon the prospect of attracting a
following in Pennsylvania, with the aid of the influence of
Gallatin, and in New York as the regular candidate of the party.
These hopes of northern support demanded that Crawford should trim
his sails with care, attacking the policies of his rivals rather
than framing issues of his own. But for a time the Missouri
controversy alienated both Pennsylvania and New York from the south,
and it brought about a bitterness of feeling fatal to his success in
those two states. To Clay, too, the slavery struggle brought
embarrassments, for his attitude as a compromiser failed to
strengthen him in the south, while it diminished his following in
the north. Calhoun suffered from the same difficulty, although his
position in the cabinet enabled him to keep in the background in
this heated contest. Jackson stood in a different situation. At the
time he was remote from the controversy, having his own troubles as
governor of Florida, and, as a slave-holding planter he was not
suspected by the south, while at the same time his popularity as the
representative of the new democracy was steadily winning him friends
in the antislavery state of Pennsylvania.

To Adams all the agitation was a distinct gain, since it broke the
concert between Virginia and New York and increased his chances as
the only important northern candidate. He saw--none more clearly--
the possibility of this issue as a basis for a new party
organization,[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, IV., 529.] but he saw also
that it menaced a dissolution of the Union.[Footnote: Ibid., V., 12,
13, 53.] He was not disposed to alienate the south, and he contented
himself with confiding his denunciation of slavery to the secret
pages of his diary, while publicly he took his stand on the doctrine
that the proposed restriction upon Missouri was against the
Constitution.[Footnote: Ibid., IV., 529.] As early as 1821 he
recognized that the number of candidates in the field made it almost
certain that the election would be decided by the vote of states in
the House of Representatives, where the vote of the single member
from Illinois would count as much as that of the whole delegation of
New York or Pennsylvania. What Adams needed, therefore, was to
combine New England in his support, obtain, if possible, a majority
in New York, and add the votes of a sufficient number of smaller
states to win the election.

The seventeenth Congress, which met in December, 1821, and lasted
until the spring of 1823, was one of the most ineffective
legislative bodies in the country's history. Henry Clay had returned
to Kentucky to resume the practice of the law as a means of
restoring his financial fortunes, and the importance of his
leadership was emphasized by his absence. Without mastery, and in
the absence of party discipline, Congress degenerated into a. mere
arena for the conflicts of rival personal factions, each anxious to
destroy the reputation of the candidate favored by the other.

In December, 1821, Barbour, of Virginia, was chosen speaker, by a
close vote, over Taylor, the favorite of Adams, thus transferring
the control of the congressional committees again to the south,
aided by its New York allies. The advantage to Crawford arising from
this election was partly neutralized by the fact that in this year
his partisans in Georgia were defeated by the choice of his
bitterest enemy for the governorship. It may have been this
circumstance which aroused the hope of Crawford's southern rivals
and led to the calling of a legislative caucus in South Carolina,
which, on December 18, 1821, by a close vote, nominated William
Lowndes instead of Calhoun for the presidency. Many of Calhoun's
partisans refused to attend this caucus, and the vote was a close
one (57 to 53). [Footnote: Ravenel, William Lowndes, chap, x.;
Adams, Memoirs, V., 468, 470; National Intelligencer, January 19,
1822.] Lowndes was a wealthy South Carolina planter, judicious and
dispassionate, with a reputation for fair-mindedness and wisdom that
gained him the respect of his foes as well as his friends. According
to tradition, Clay once declared that among the many men he had
known he found it difficult to decide who was the greatest, but
added, "I think the wisest man I ever knew was William
Lowndes."[Footnote: Ravenel, William Lowndes, 238.] His death, in
less than a year, removed from the presidential contest an important
figure, and from the south one of the most gifted of her sons.

As soon as the news of the nomination of Lowndes reached Washington,
a delegation of members of Congress, from various sections, secured
Calhoun's consent to avow his candidacy. His career as a tariff man
and as a friend of internal improvements had won him northern
supporters, especially in Pennsylvania, although, as South
Carolina's action showed, he was not able to control his state. The
announcement of Calhoun's candidacy turned against him all the
batteries of his rivals. Pleading the depleted condition of the
treasury, Crawford's partisans in Congress attacked the measures of
Calhoun as secretary of war. Retrenchment in the expenditures for
the army was demanded, and finally, under the leadership of
Crawford's friends, the Senate refused to ratify certain nominations
of military officers made by the president on the recommendation of
the secretary of war, giving as a reason that they were not in
accordance with the law for the reduction of the army. In the
cabinet discussion, Crawford openly supported this opposition, and
his relations with the president became so strained that, in the
spring of 1822, reports were rife that his resignation would be
demanded. [Footnote: Cf. Adams, Memoirs, V., 525.] Crawford himself
wrote to Gallatin that it would not be to his disadvantage to be
removed from office. [Footnote: Gallatin, Writings, 31., 241.]

In the summer the matter was brought to a head by a correspondence
in which Monroe indignantly intimated that Crawford had given
countenance to the allegation that the president's principles and
policy were not in sympathy with the early Jeffersonian system of
economy and state rights. Believing that Crawford was aiming at the
creation of a new party (a thing which distressed Monroe, who
regarded parties as an evil),[Footnote: Monroe, Writings, VI., 286-
291.] he made it clear that it was the duty of a cabinet officer,
when once the policy of the executive had been determined, to give
that policy co-operation and support.[Footnote: Monroe to Crawford,
August 22, 1822, MS. in N.Y. Pub. Library.] In his reply Crawford
denied that he had personally antagonized the measures of the
administration; [Footnote: Crawford to Monroe, September 3, 1822,
MS. in N.Y. Pub. Library; cf. Adams, Memoirs, VI., 390.] but he took
the ground that a cabinet officer should not attempt to influence
his friends in Congress either for or against the policy of the

His assurances of loyalty satisfied Monroe and averted the breach.
It is easy to see, however, that Crawford's attitude strengthened
the feeling on the part of his rivals that he was intriguing against
the administration. They believed, whether he instigated his
partisans to oppose measures favored by the president or was unable
to restrain them, in either case he should be forced into open
opposition. [Footnote: Cf. Poinsett to Monroe, May 10, 1822, Monroe
MSS., in Library of Cong.; Adams, Memoirs, V., 315, VI., 57.] The
truth is that the government was so divided within itself that it
was difficult to determine with certainty what its policy was.
Monroe's greatest weakness was revealed at this time in his
inability to create and insist upon a definite policy. The situation
was aggravated by the president's determination to remain neutral
between the rival members of his official family, and by the loss of
influence which he suffered through the knowledge that he was soon
to lay down the presidential power.

Meanwhile, John Quincy Adams watched these intrigues with bitterness
of soul. Debarred by his Puritan principles from the open
solicitation of votes which his rivals practiced, he yet knew every
move in the game and gauged the political tendencies with the
astuteness of the politician, albeit a Puritan politician. Nor did
he disdain to make such use of his position as would win friends or
remove enemies. He proposed to Calhoun a foreign mission, suggested
the same to Clay, favored an ambassadorship for Clinton, and urged
the appointment of Jackson to Mexico. These overtures were politely
declined by the candidates, and Adams was forced to fight for the
presidency against the men whom he would so gladly have sent to
honor their country abroad.



The place of slavery in the westward expansion of the nation was not
the only burning question which the American people had to face in
the presidency of Monroe. Within a few years after that contest, the
problem of the independence of the New World and of the destiny of
the United States in the sisterhood of new American republics
confronted the administration. Should the political rivalries and
wars of Europe to acquire territory be excluded from the western
hemisphere? Should the acquisition of new colonies by European
states in the vast unsettled spaces of the two Americas be
terminated? These weighty questions were put to the mild Virginian
statesman; history has named his answer the Monroe Doctrine.

From the beginning of our national existence, the United States had
been pushing back Europe from her borders, and asserting neutrality
and the right to remain outside of the political System of the Old
World. Washington's farewell address of 1796, with its appeal to his
fellow-citizens against "interweaving our destiny with that of any
part of Europe," sank deep into the popular consciousness. It did
not interfere with the process by which, piece by piece, the United
States added to its domains fragments from the disintegrating
Spanish empire; for so long as European states held the strategic
positions on our flanks, as they did in Washington's day, the policy
of separation from the nations of the Old World was one difficult to
maintain; and France and England watched the enlargement of the
United States with jealous eye. Each nation, in turn, considered the
plans of Miranda, a Venezuelan revolutionist, for the freeing of
Spanish America. In 1790 the Nootka Sound affair threatened to place
England in possession of the whole Mississippi valley and to give
her the leadership in Spanish America. [Footnote: Turner, in Am.
Hist. Rev., VII., 704, VIII., 78; Manning, Nootka Sound Controversy,
in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report, 1904, p. 281; cf. Bassett, Federalist
System (Am. Nation, XI), chap. vi.] Two years later, France urged
England to join her in freeing the colonies of Spain in the New
World;[Footnote: Sorel, L'Europe et la Revolution Francaise, II.,
384, 418, III., 17.] and when Pitt rejected these overtures, France
sent Genet to spread the fires of her revolution in Louisiana and
Florida.[Footnote: Turner, in Am. Hist. Rev., III., 650, X. 259.]
When this design failed, France turned to diplomacy, and between
1795 and 1800 tried to persuade Spain to relinquish Florida and
Louisiana to herself, as a means of checking the expansion of the
United States and of rendering her subservient to France. The
growing preponderance of France over Spain, and the fear that she
would secure control of Spanish America, led England again in 1798
to listen to Miranda's dream of freeing his countrymen, and to sound
the United States on a plan for joint action against Spain in the
New World. [Footnote: Turner, in Am. Hist. Rev., X., 249 et seq.,
276.] The elder Adams turned a deaf ear to these suggestions, and
when at last Napoleon achieved the possession of Louisiana, it was
only to turn it over to the United States. [Footnote: Sloane, in Am.
Hist. Rev., IV., 439.] Jefferson's threat that the possession of
Louisiana by France would seal the union between England and the
United States and "make the first cannon which shall be fired in
Europe the signal for the tearing up of any settlement she may have
made, and for holding the two continents of America in sequestration
for the common purposes of the united British and American nations,"
[Footnote: Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), VIII., 145.] showed how
unstable must be the American policy of isolation so long as Europe
had a lodgment on our borders. [Footnote: Cf. Channing, Jeffersonian
System (Am. Nation, XII.), chap. v.]

The acquisition of Louisiana by the United States was followed by
the annexation of West Florida; and the Seminole campaign frightened
Spain into the abandonment of East Florida. [Footnote: Babcock,
American Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xvii.] While the
United States was thus crowding Europe back from its borders and
strengthening its leadership in the New World, Spanish America was
revolting from the mother-country. When Napoleon made himself master
of Spain in 1807, English merchants, alarmed at the prospect of
losing the lucrative trade which they had built up in the lands
which Spain had so long monopolized, supported the revolutionists
with money, while various expeditions led by English officers aided
the revolt. [Footnote: Paxson, Independence of the So. Am.
Republics, chap, iii.; Am. Hist. Rev., IV., 449, VI., 508.] At
first, failure met the efforts of the loosely compacted provinces,
made up of sharply marked social classes, separated by race
antagonisms, and untrained in self-government. Only in Buenos Ayres
(later the Argentine Confederation), where representatives of the
United Provinces of the Rio de la Plata declared their independence
in 1816, were the colonists able to hold their ground.

A new era in the revolt began, however, in 1817, when General San
Martin surprised the Spaniards by his march, from a frontier
province of La Plata, over a pass thirteen thousand feet above the
sea across the Andes to Chili. In the course of four years, with the
co-operation of Lord Cochrane (who relinquished the British service
in order to command the fleet of the insurgents on the Pacific), he
effected the liberation of Chili and of Peru. Meanwhile, in the
northern provinces the other great South American revolutionist,
Bolivar, aided by a legion of Irish and English veterans, won the
independence of Venezuela and Colombia. In July, 1822, these two
successful generals met in Ecuador; and San Martin, yielding the
leadership to the more ambitious Bolivar, withdrew from the New
World. By this date, America was clearly lost to the Latin states of
Europe, for Mexico became an independent empire in 1821, and the
next year Brazil, while it chose for its ruler a prince of the
younger line of the royal house of Portugal, proclaimed its
independence.[Footnote: Paxson, Independence of the So. Am.
Republics, chap. i.]

Although the relations between these revolutionary states and
England, both on the military and on the commercial side, were much
closer than with the United States, this nation followed the course
of events with keen interest. Agents were sent, in 1817 and 1820, to
various South American states, to report upon the conditions there;
and the vessels of the revolutionary governments were accorded
belligerent rights, and admitted to the ports of the United
States.[Footnote: Ibid., 121; Am. State Papers, Foreign, IV., 217,
818.] The occupation of Amelia Island and Galveston, in 1817, by
revolutionists, claiming the protection of the flags of Colombia and
Mexico respectively, gave opportunity for piratical forays upon
commerce, which the United States was unable to tolerate, and these
establishments were broken up by the government.[Footnote: McMaster,
United States, IV., chap. xxxiv.; Reeves, in Johns Hopkins Univ.
Studies, XXIII., Nos. 9, 10.]

President Monroe seems to have been inclined to recognize the
independence of these states on the earliest evidence of their
ability to sustain it; but the secretary of state, John Quincy
Adams, favored a policy of delay. He had slight confidence in the
turbulent, untrained republics of Latin-America, and little patience
with the idea that their revolution had anything in common with that
of the United States. At the close of 1817 he believed it
inexpedient and unjust for the United States to favor their cause,
and he urged a friend to publish inquiries into the political
morality and the right of the United States to take sides with a
people who trampled upon civil rights, disgraced their revolution by
buccaneering and piracy, and who lacked both unity of cause and of
effort. [Footnote: Letter to A. H. Everett, in Am. Hist. Rev., XI.,
112.] His own system was based on the theory that the United States.
should move in harmony with England, and, if possible, with the
other European powers in the matter of recognition; [Footnote:
Paxson, Independence of the So. Am. Republics, 149 (citing MSS. in
State Dept.)] and he perceived that Spain would be more likely to
yield Florida to the United States if the president did not
acknowledge the independence of her other provinces.

Henry Clay now came forward as the advocate of immediate recognition
of the revolutionary republics. In this he was undoubtedly swayed by
a real sympathy with the cause of freedom and by the natural
instincts of a man of the west, where antagonism to Spain was bred
in the bone. But his insistence upon immediate action was also
stimulated by his opposition to Monroe and the secretary of state.
Clay's great speech on recognition was made May 24 and 25, 1818. His
imagination kindled at the vastness of South America: "The loftiest
mountains; the most majestic rivers in the world; the richest mines
of the precious metals; and the choicest productions of the earth."
"We behold there," said he, "a spectacle still more interesting and
sublime--the glorious spectacle of eighteen millions of people
struggling to burst their chains and be free." He appealed to
Congress to support an American system by recognizing these sister
republics, and argued that, both in diplomacy and in commerce they
would be guided by an American policy and aid the United States to
free itself from dependence on Europe. His motion was lost by an
overwhelming majority, but the speech made a deep impression.
[Footnote: Annals of Cong., 15 Cong., 1 Sess., II., 1474.]

In the two years which elapsed between the negotiation and the
ratification of the Florida treaty, the president was several times
on the point of recommending the forcible occupation of Florida, but
he withheld the blow, hoping that the liberal Spanish government
established under the constitution of 1820 might be brought to give
its consent to the cession. The impetuous Clay chafed under this
delay, and on May 10, 1820, he broke forth in another speech, in
support of a resolution declaring the expediency of sending
ministers to the South American states. Charging the administration,
and especially John Quincy Adams, with subserviency to Great
Britain, he demanded that the United States should become the center
of a system against the despotism of the Old World and should act on
its own responsibility. "We look too much abroad," said he. "Let us
break these commercial and political fetters; let us no longer watch
the nod of any European politician; let us become real and true
Americans, and place ourselves at the head of the American system."
[Footnote: Annals of Cong., 16 Cong., 1 Sess., II., 2727.]

Clay was steadily gaining support in his efforts to force the hands
of the administration: his resolutions won by a fair majority, and
again, in February, 1821, he secured the almost unanimous assent of
the House to a resolution of sympathy with South America. Another
resolution, expressing the readiness of that body to support the
president whenever he should think it expedient to recognize the
republics, passed by a vote of 86 to 68, and the triumphant Clay was
placed at the head of a committee to wait on the president with this
resolution.[Footnote: Ibid., 2229, and 2 Sess., 1081, 1091; Adams,
Memoirs, V., 268]

Although the victory was without immediate effect on the
administration, which refused to act while the Florida treaty was
still unratified, Adams perceived that the popular current was
growing too strong to be much longer stemmed; the charge of
dependence upon England was one not easy to be borne, and Clay's
vision of an independent American system guided by the United States
had its influence on his mind. Five months after Clay's speech, in
1820, extolling such a system, Adams set forth similar general ideas
in a discussion between himself and the British minister over the
regulation, of the slave-trade. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 182]
By 1822, Florida was in our possession. The success of the arms of
the revolutionists was unmistakable; several governments, of
sufficient stability to warrant recognition had been erected; and it
was patent to the world that Spain had lost her colonies. Acting on
these considerations, Monroe sent a message to Congress, March 8,
1822, announcing that the time for recognition had come, and asking
for appropriations for ministers to South America. [Footnote:
Richardson, Messages and Papers, II., 116]

In the mean time, the secretary of state was confronted with
important diplomatic questions which, complicated the South American
problem. As Spanish America broke away from the mother-country, its
possessions in North America on the Pacific were exposed to seizure
by the rival powers. In 1821, when Stratford Canning, the British
minister to the United States, protested against a motion, in the
House of Representatives, that the United States should form an
establishment on the Columbia, Adams challenged any claim of England
to the shores of the Pacific. "I do not know," said he, "what you
claim nor what you do not claim. You claim India; you claim Africa;
you claim--" "Perhaps," said Canning, "a piece of the moon." "No,"
said Adams, "I have not heard that you claim exclusively any part of
the moon; but there is not a spot on THIS habitable globe that I
could affirm you do not claim; and there is none which you may not
claim with as much color of right as you can have to Columbia River
or its mouth." [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 252.]

The time had arrived when Adams's familiarity with foreign
diplomacy, his belief that a new nation must assert its rights with
vigor if it expected to maintain them, his very testiness and
irascibility, his "bull-dog fighting qualities"--in short, the
characteristics that were sources of weakness to him in domestic
politics--proved to be elements of strength in his conduct of
foreign relations. The individualism, the uncompromising nature, the
aggressiveness, and the natural love of expansion, which were traits
of John Quincy Adams, became of highest service to his country in
the diplomatic relations of the next few years.

Hardly a year elapsed after this defiance to England when Adams met
the claims of Russia likewise with a similar challenge. On September
4, 1821, the Russian czar issued a ukase announcing the claim of
Russia on the Pacific coast north of the fifty-first degree, and
interdicting to the commercial vessels of other powers the approach
on the high seas within one hundred Italian miles of this claim.
[Footnote: U. S. Foreign Relations (1890), 439.] This assertion of
Russian monopoly, which would, in effect, have closed Bering Sea,
met with peremptory refusal by Adams, and on July 17, 1823, having
in mind Russia's posts in California, he informed the minister,
Baron Tuyl, "that we should contest the right of Russia to any
territorial establishment on this continent, and that we should
assume distinctly the principle that the American continents are no
longer subjects for any new European colonial establishments."
[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 163.] After negotiations, Russia
concluded the treaty of April 17, 1824, by which she agreed to form
no establishments on the northwest coast south of latitude 54
degrees 40', and the United States reciprocally agreed to make no
establishments north of that line. At the same time Russia abandoned
her extreme claim of maritime jurisdiction.

While the Russian claims were under consideration, the question of
the future of Cuba was also giving great concern. The Pearl of the
Antilles remained in the possession of Spain when she lost her main-
land colonies. By its position, commanding both the Gulf of Mexico
and the Caribbean Sea, it was of the highest importance to the
United States as well as to the West Indian powers, England and
France. From a party in Cuba itself, in September, 1822, advances
were made to the United States for annexation, and Monroe sent an
agent to investigate, meanwhile refraining from encouraging the
movement. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 69, 72.]

George Canning, who became premier of England in September, 1822,
was convinced that no questions relating to continental Europe could
be more immediately and vitally important to Great Britain than
those which related to America. [Footnote: Stapleton, Official
Corresp. of George Canning, I., 48.] Alarmed lest the United States
should occupy Cuba, Canning, in a memorandum to the cabinet in
November, questioned whether any blow that could be struck by any
foreign power in any part of the world would more affect the
interests of England. [Footnote: Ibid., 52; Royal Hist. Soc.,
Transactions (new series), XVIII., 89] He contented himself,
however, with sending a naval force to the waters of Cuba and Puerto
Rico, with the double purpose of checking American aggressions and
protecting English commerce. This action created suspicion on the
part of the United States, and Adams issued instructions (April 28,
1823) to the American minister at Madrid, declaring that, within a
half-century, the annexation of Cuba to the United States would be
indispensable to the continuance and integrity of the Union itself.
The laws of political gravitation would, in his opinion, ultimately
bring Cuba to this country, if, in the mean time, it were not
acquired by some other power. Adams's immediate policy, therefore,
favored the retention of Cuba and Puerto Rico by Spain, but he
refused to commit the United States to a guarantee of the
independence of Cuba against all the world except that power.
[Footnote: Wharton, Digest of Am. Int. Law, I., 361-366; Latane,
Diplomatic Relations with Lat. Am., chap. iii.]

The mutual jealousies of the nations with respect to the destiny of
Cuba became, at this time, entangled with the greater question of
the intervention of the Holy Alliance in the New World. At the
Congress of Verona, in November, 1822, Austria, France, Russia, and
Prussia signed a revision of the treaty of the Holy Alliance,
[Footnote: Snow, Treaties and Topics; Seignobos, Pol. Hist. of
Europe since 1814, 762.] which had for its objects the promotion of
the doctrine of legitimacy in support of the divine right of rulers,
and the doctrine of intervention, for the purpose of restoring to
their thrones those monarchs who had been deposed by popular
uprisings, and of rehabilitating those who had been limited by
written constitutions. At Verona, the allies agreed to use their
efforts to put an end to the system of representative government in
Europe, and to prevent its further introduction. Having already
suppressed uprisings in Naples and Piedmont, the Alliance empowered
France to send troops into the Spanish peninsula to restore the
authority of the king of Spain and to put down the revolutionary
constitution of 1820. Chateaubriand, the French representative,
desired the congress to go further and intervene in Spanish America,
but this question was postponed.

Alarmed by the prospect of French power in Spain and by the proposed
extension of the system of the allies to the New World, Canning
protested against the doctrine of intervention, and determined that,
if France was to become the mistress of Spain, she should at least
not control the old Spanish empire. In the spring of 1823 he made an
unsuccessful effort to secure a pledge from France not to acquire
any Spanish-American possessions, either by conquest or by cession
from Spain. But the French government maintained its reserve, even
after England disclaimed for herself the intention of acquiring
Spanish-American territory. [Footnote: Stapleton, Political Life of
Canning, I., 19.]

Having broken with the concert of the European powers, it was
natural that England should turn to the United States, and it is
very likely that the next step of Canning was influenced by the
dispatches of the British minister to the United States, who
reported a conversation with Adams, in June, 1823, in which the
secretary strongly set forth his belief that, in view of the virtual
dissolution of the European alliance, England and the United States
had much in common in their policy. "With respect to the vast
continent of the West," said he, "the United States must necessarily
take a warm and decided interest in whatever determined the fate or
affected the welfare of its component members." But he disclaimed
any wish on the part of this country to obtain exclusive advantages
there. He urged that England ought to recognize the independence of
the revolted provinces, and he deprecated the conquest or cession of
any part of them. [Footnote: Stratford Canning to George Canning,
June 6, 1823, MSS. Foreign Office, America, CLXXVI; Adams, Memoirs,
VI., 151; cf. Reddaway, Monroe Doctrine, 83.]

The first impression of the British minister, on hearing Adams's
emphasis on the community of interests between the two nations, was
that the secretary was suggesting an alliance; and it may well have
been that Canning was encouraged by the American attitude to make
overtures to Rush, the American minister, shortly after these
dispatches must have reached him. On August 16, 1823, and three
times thereafter, Canning proposed a joint declaration by England
and the United States against any project by a European power of "a
forcible enterprise for reducing the colonies to subjugation, on the
behalf or in the name of Spain; or which meditates the acquisition
of any part of them to itself, by cession or by conquest."
[Footnote: Stapleton, Political Life of Canning, II., 24; W. C.
Ford, in Mass. Hist. Soc. Proceedings (2d series), XV., 415.]
Canning was willing to make public announcement that the recovery of
the colonies by Spain was hopeless; that the matter of recognition
was only a question of time; and that Great Britain did not aim at
the possession of any portion of them, but that it "could not see
any part of them transferred to any other power with indifference."
These professions Canning desired that the United States and England
should mutually confide to each other and declare "in the face of
the world."

Confronted with Canning's important proposition, Rush, who doubted
the disinterestedness of England, prudently attempted to exact a
preliminary recognition of the Spanish-American republics; if
Canning would agree to take this action, he would accept the
responsibility of engaging in such a declaration. [Footnote: Ford,
in Mass. Hist. Soc. Proceedings (2d series), XV., 420, 423.] Having
failed in four successive efforts to persuade Rush to join in an
immediate declaration, irrespective of prior recognition by England,
Canning proceeded alone, and, in an interview with Polignac, the
French minister in London, on October 9, 1823, he announced
substantially the principles which he had expressed to the American
minister. [Footnote: Stapleton, Political Life of Canning, II., 26.]
Polignac thereupon disclaimed for France any intention to
appropriate Spanish possessions in America, and abjured any design,
on the part of his country, of acting against the colonies by force;
but he significantly added that the future relations between Spain
and her colonies ought to form a subject of discussion between the
European powers. Acting on this idea, and in opposition to England's
wishes, an invitation was sent to Russia, Prussia, and Austria to
confer at Paris on the relations of Spain and her revolted

Rush's despatches relating the overtures of Canning reached
President Monroe [Footnote: Ford, in Am. Hist. Rev., VII., 684.]
October 9, 1823, on the same day that Canning was interviewing
Polignac. Adams was absent from Washington at the time, and Monroe,
returning to Virginia, consulted ex-Presidents Jefferson and
Madison. He clearly intimated his own belief that the present case
might be an exception to the general maxim against entanglement in
European politics, and was evidently willing to accept the proposal
of the British government. [Footnote: Monroe, Writings, VI., 323.]

To Jefferson [Footnote: Ibid., VI., 394.] the question seemed the
most momentous since the Declaration of Independence. One nation,
most of all, he thought, could disturb America in its efforts to
have an independent system, and that nation, England, now offered
"to lead, aid, and accompany us in it." He believed that by acceding
to her proposition her mighty weight would be brought into the scale
of free government, and "emancipate a continent at one stroke."
Construing the English proposition to be a maintenance of our own
principle of "keeping out of our land all foreign-powers," he was
ready to accept Canning's invitation. He was even ready to yield his
desire for the annexation or independence of Cuba, in order to
obtain England's co-operation. Madison, [Footnote: Madison, Writings
(ed. of 1865), III., 339-341.] also, was prepared to accept the
English proposal, and to invite that government to join in
disapproval of the campaign of France in Spain and in a declaration
in behalf of the Greeks.

Thus, by a strange operation of fate, members of the "Virginia
dynasty," the traditional antagonists of England, were now willing
to accept her leadership in American affairs, and were inclined to
mingle in European concerns in opposition to the Holy Alliance. By
an equally strange chance, it was a statesman from New England, the
section traditionally friendly to British leadership, who prevented
the United States from casting itself into the arms of England at
this crisis, and who summoned his country to stand forth
independently as the protector of an American system.

When John Quincy Adams learned of Canning's proposals, he had just
been engaged in a discussion with the representative of the czar,
who informed him of the refusal of Russia to recognize the Spanish-
American republics, and expressed the hope that America would
continue her policy of neutrality.

While the cabinet had Rush's dispatches under consideration, Adams
received a second communication from the Russian minister,
expounding the reactionary ideas of the Holy Alliance. [Footnote:
Ford, in Mass. Hist. Soc. Proceedings (2d series), XV., 378, 395,
402-408.] To the secretary of state this was a challenge to defend
the American ideas of liberty. Convinces that his Country ought to
decline the overture of Great Britain and avow its principles
explicitly to Russia and France, "rather than to come in as a cock-
boat in the wake of the British man-of-war," Adams informed the
president that the reply to Russia and the instructions to Rush in
England must be part of a combined system of policy. "The ground
that I wish to take," he said, "is that of earnest remonstrance
against the interference of European powers by force with South
America, but to disclaim all interference on our part with Europe;
to make an American cause and adhere inflexibly to that." [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, VI., 178, 194, 197, 199-212.]

In the cabinet he stood firmly against giving guarantees to England
with respect to Cuba. He heartened up his colleagues, who were
alarmed at the possibility of the spread of war to the United
States; but at the same time that he dismissed this danger as remote
he pictured to the cabinet the alarming alternatives in case the
allies subjugated Spanish America: California, Peru, and Chili might
fall to Russia; Cuba, to England; and Mexico, to France. The danger
was even at our doors, he declared, for within a few days the
minister of France had openly threatened to recover Louisiana.
[Footnote: Ibid., VI., 207; cf. Reeves, in Johns Hopkins Univ.
Studies, XXIII, Nos. 9, 10.] Such suggestions exhibit the real
significance of the problem, which in truth involved the question of
whether America should lie open to seizure by rival European
nations, each fearful lest the other gain an undue advantage. It was
time for the United States to take its stand against intervention in
this hemisphere.

Monroe was persuaded by Adams to change the first draught of his
message, in which the president criticized the invasion of Spain by
France and recommended the acknowledgment of the independence of the
Greeks, in terms which seemed to threaten war with Europe on
European questions. Even Webster and Clay, in fervent orations,
showed themselves ready to go far towards committing the United
States to an unwise support of the cause of the Greeks, which at
this time was deeply stirring the sympathy of the United States. On
the other hand, Adams stood firmly on the well-established doctrine
of isolation from Europe, and of an independent utterance, by the
United States, as the leader in the New World, of the principles of
a purely American system. In the final draught, these ideas were all
accepted, as well as the principles affirmed by Adams in his
conferences with the Russian minister.

When sent to Congress, on December 2, 1823, Monroe's message
asserted "as a principle in which the rights and interests of the
United States are involved, that the American continents, by the
free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain,
are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future
colonization by any European powers." This was in effect the
proclamation of the end of a process that began with Columbus,
Cabot, and Cartier--the rivalry of the nations of the Old World in
the discovery, occupation, and political control of the wild lands
of the western hemisphere. The interpretation by the next
administration left the enforcement of this general principle to the
various American states according to their interests. [Footnote: See
chap. xvi. below]

The message further dealt with the determination of the United
States not to meddle with European affairs. "It is only when our
rights are invaded or seriously menaced," said Monroe, "that we
resent injuries or make preparation for our defense. With the
movements in this hemisphere we are of necessity more immediately
connected, and by causes which must be obvious to all enlightened
and impartial observers. The political system of the allied powers
is essentially different in this respect from that of America." This
declaration expressed the consciousness that there was a real
American system contrasted with that of Europe and capable of
separate existence.

Finally, the message met the immediate crisis by a bold assertion of
the policy of the United States: "We owe it, therefore, to candor
and to the amicable relations existing between the United States and
those powers to declare that we should consider any attempt on their
part to extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as
dangerous to our peace and safety. With the existing colonies or
dependencies of any European power we have not interfered and shall
not interfere. But with the Governments who have declared their
independence and maintained it, and whose independence we have, on
great consideration and on just principles, acknowledged, we could
not view any interposition for the purpose of oppressing them, or
controlling in any other manner their destiny, by any European power
in any other light than as the manifestation of an unfriendly
disposition toward the United States." [Footnote: Richardson,
Messages and Papers, II., 207-218; cf. Hart, Foundations of Am.
Foreign Policy, chap. vii.] Herein was the assertion of the well-
established opposition of the United States to the doctrine of
intervention as violating the equality of nations. It was the
affirmation also of the equality of the Old and the New World in
diplomatic relations, and the announcement of the paramount interest
of the United States in American affairs. [Footnote: Moore, "Non-
Intervention and the Monroe Doctrine," in Harper's Mag., CIX., 857.]

This classic statement of the position of the United States in the
New World, therefore, applied an old tendency on the part of this
country to a particular exigency. Its authorship can hardly be
attributed to any single individual, but its peculiar significance
at this juncture lay in the fact that the United States came
forward, unconnected with Europe, as the champion of the autonomy
and freedom of America, and declared that the era of European
colonization in the New World had passed away. The idea of an
American system, under the leadership of the United States,
unhampered by dependence upon European diplomacy, had been
eloquently and clearly voiced by Henry Clay in 1820. But John Quincy
Adams also reached the conception of an independent American system,
and to him belongs the credit for the doctrine that the two Americas
were closed to future political colonization. His office of
secretary of state placed him where he was able to insist upon a
consistent, clear-cut, and independent expression of the doctrine of
an American system. Monroe's was the honor of taking the
responsibility for these utterances. [Footnote: Cf. Reddaway, Monroe
Doctrine, chap, v.; and Ford, in Am. Hist. Rev., VII., 676, VIII.,

Canning afterwards boasted, "I called the New World into existence
to redress the balance of the Old." [Footnote: Stapleton, Political
Life of Canning, III., 227.] Unquestionably his determination that
"if France had Spain it should not be Spain with the Indies,"
materially contributed to make effective the protest of the United
States, and he recognized the value of the president's message in
putting an end to the proposal of a European congress. "It was
broken," said he, "in all its limbs before, but the president's
message gives it the coup de grace." [Footnote: Stapleton, George
Canning and His Times, 395.]

Nevertheless, the assertion by the United States of an American
system independent of Europe, and the proposed exclusion of Europe
from further colonization were, in truth, as obnoxious to England as
they were to France. [Footnote: Reddaway, Monroe Doctrine, 98.] "The
great danger of the time," declared Canning in 1825, shortly after
the British recognition of Mexico, "--a danger which the policy of
the European system would have fostered--was a division of the world
into European and American, republican and monarchical; a league of
worn-out governments on the one hand and of youthful and stirring
nations, with the United States at their head, on the other. WE slip
in between, and plant ourselves in Mexico. The United States have
gotten the start of us in vain, and we link once more America to
Europe." On December 17, 1824, Canning wrote: "Spanish America is
free; and if we do not mismanage our matters sadly, she is English,
and novus saeclorum nascitur ordo." [Footnote: Festing, J.H. Frere
and His Friends, 267, quoted by E.M. Lloyd, in Royal Hist. Soc.
Transactions (new series), XVIII., 77, 93.]

Later events were to reveal how unsubstantial were the hopes of the
British minister. For the present, his hands were tied by the fact
that England and the United States had a common interest in
safeguarding Spanish America; and the form of Monroe's declaration
seemed less important than its effectiveness in promoting this
result. In the United States the message was received with
approbation. Although Clay, from considerations of policy, withdrew
a resolution which he presented to Congress (January 20,1824),
giving legislative endorsement to the doctrine, [Footnote: Annals of
Cong., 18 Cong., 1 Sess., I., 1104, II., 2763.] there was no doubt
of the sympathy of the American people with its fundamental
principles. Together with the attitude of England, it put an end to
the menace of the Holy Alliance on this side of the ocean, and it
began a new chapter, yet unfinished, in the history of the
predominance of the United States in the New World.



The transformation by which the slender line of the Indian trail
became the trader's trace, and then a road, superseded by the
turnpike and canal, and again replaced by the railroad, is typical
of the economic development of the United States. As the population
of the west increased, its surplus products sought outlets. Improved
means of communication became essential, and when these were
furnished the new lines of internal trade knitted the nation into
organic unity and replaced the former colonial dependence upon
Europe, in the matter of commerce, by an extensive domestic trade
between the various sections. From these changes flowed important
political results. [Footnote: For the earlier phase of internal
improvements, cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.),
chap. xv.]

Many natural obstacles checked this process. The Appalachian
mountain system cut off the seaboard of the United States from the
interior. From the beginning, the Alleghenies profoundly influenced
the course of American history, and at one time even endangered the
permanency of the Union. In our own day the railroad has so reduced
the importance of these mountains that it is difficult for us to
realize the part which they once played in our development. Although
Webster boasted that there were no Alleghenies in his politics, we
have already seen [Footnote: See chaps, iii., vi., above.] that in
the twenties they exercised a dominant influence on the lines of
internal commerce, and compelled the pioneer farmers to ship their
surplus down the Mississippi to New Orleans and around the coast,
and thence abroad and to the cities of the north. The difficult and
expensive process of wagoning goods from Philadelphia and Baltimore
across the mountains to the Ohio Valley raised the price of
manufactured goods to the western farmer; while, on the other hand,
the cost of transportation for his crops left him little profit and
reduced the value of his lands. [Footnote: Journ. of Polit. Econ.,
VIII., 36-41.]

Under these circumstances, it was inevitable that the natural
opportunities furnished by the water system of the Great Lakes and
the widely ramifying tributaries of the Mississippi should appeal to
statesmen who considered the short distances that intervened between
these navigable waters and the rivers that sought the Atlantic.
Turnpikes and canals had already shown themselves practicable and
profitable in England, so a natural effort arose to use them in aid
of that movement for connecting east and west by ties of interest
which Washington had so much at heart. New York, Pennsylvania,
Maryland, and Virginia, all subdivided by the mountains into eastern
and western sections, fostered roads and chartered turnpike and
canal companies. Pennsylvania was pre-eminent in this movement even
before the close of the eighteenth century, subscribing large
amounts to the stock of turnpike companies in order to promote the
trade between Philadelphia and the growing population in the region
of Pittsburgh. So numerous were the projects and beginnings of roads
and canals in the nation, that as early as 1808 the far-sighted
Gallatin made his famous report for a complete national system of
roads and canals. [Footnote: Cf. Hart, Slavery and Abolition (Am.
Nation, XVI.), chap. iii.]

When New York undertook the Erie Canal in 1817 as a state
enterprise, and pushed it to such a triumphant conclusion that
before a decade after its completion its tolls repaid the cost of
construction, a revolution was effected in transportation. The
cheapness of water carriage not only compelled the freighters on the
turnpike roads to lower their charges, but also soon made it
probable that canals would supersede land transportation for heavy
freights, and even for passengers. For a time the power of
Pittsburgh and the activity of Philadelphia merchants sustained the
importance of the Pennsylvania turnpike. Until Great Lake steam
navigation developed and population spread along the shore of Lake
Erie and canals joined the Ohio and the lakes, the Erie Canal did
not reap its harvest of trade in the west. But already Pennsylvania
was alarmed at the prospect of losing her commercial ascendancy.
While New York and Philadelphia were developing canals and turnpikes
to reach the west, Baltimore was placed in an awkward position. The
attempts to improve the waters of the upper Potomac engaged the
interests of Maryland and Virginia from the days of Washington. But
the success of the Potomac Company, chartered jointly by these two
states in an effort to reach the Ohio trade, would have turned
traffic towards the city of Washington and its outlying suburbs
instead of towards Baltimore, which was already connected by a
turnpike with the Cumberland Road, so as to share with Philadelphia
in the wagon trade to the Ohio. On the other hand, Baltimore was
interested in the development of the Susquehanna's navigation, for
this river had its outlet in Chesapeake Bay, near enough to
Baltimore to make that city its entrepot; and it tapped the great
valley of Pennsylvania as well as the growing agricultural area of
south-central New York, which was not tributary to the Erie Canal.
But it was not possible to expect New York, Pennsylvania, or even
that part of Maryland interested in the Potomac to aid these
ambitions of Baltimore; and that city found itself at a disadvantage
and Maryland's interests were divided. [Footnote: Hulbert, Historic
Highways, XIII., 69 et seq.; Mills, Treatise on Inland Navig.; see
chap, xvii., below.]

Meantime, Virginia, anxious to check the western exodus from the
interior of her state, established a state fund and a board of
public works for the improvement of her rivers, including the
project of connecting the James and Kanawha. [Footnote: Babcock, Am.
Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xv.; Adams, United States,
IX., 164.] North Carolina was agitating similar plans; [Footnote:
Murphy, Memorial on Internal Improvements; Weaver, Internal
Improvements in N. C., in Johns Hopkins Univ. Studies, XXI, 113.]
and South Carolina made appropriations for extensive improvements.

New England devoted her attention to canals along the seaboard and
up the Connecticut Valley, to give the products of the interior of
that section an outlet on the coast. Boston was feeling the
isolation from the western trade that was enriching New York, and
some voices were raised in favor of a canal to reach the Hudson; but
the undertaking was too difficult, and the metropolis of New England
devoted its energies to the ocean commerce.

Meantime, the west was urging the federal government to construct
those interstate roads and canals which were essential to the
prosperity of that section and which could not be undertaken by
jealous and conflicting states. The veto by Madison of Calhoun's
bonus bill, in 1817, [Footnote: Cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am.
Nation, XIII.), chap. xvii.] was followed nine months later by
Monroe's first annual message, [Footnote: Richardson, Messages and
Papers, II., 18.] in which he stated his belief that the
Constitution did not empower Congress to establish a system of
internal improvements, and recommended an amendment to convey the
power. To Clay and the friends of internal improvements, these
constitutional scruples of the Virginia dynasty, although
accompanied by approval of the plan of a system of internal
improvements at federal expense, came as a challenge. In an
important debate on the constitutionality of national internal
improvements, in 1818, the House of Representatives, voting on four
resolutions submitted by Lowndes, of South Carolina, [Footnote:
Annals of Cong., 15 Cong., 1 Sess., I., 1249] declared that Congress
had power to appropriate money for the construction of military
roads, and of other roads, and of canals, and for the improvement of
watercourses (89 ayes to 75 nays). [Footnote: By count of names; the
Journal gives ayes 90.] But after a debate which turned on the
significance of the word "establish" in the Constitution, the House
decided against the power to construct post-roads and military roads
(81 to 84); against the power to construct roads and canals
necessary to commerce between the states (71 to 95); and against the
power to construct canals for military purposes (81 to 83).

It was clear after this debate that there was not a sufficient
majority to override the veto which might be expected from the
president. On the other hand, the majority were unwilling to hazard
the rights which they claimed to possess, by appealing to the states
for a constitutional amendment. The next year Calhoun, the secretary
of war, responding to an invitation of Congress, submitted a report
outlining a comprehensive system of internal improvements requisite
for the defense of the United States. While avoiding an opinion on
the question of constitutionality, he declared that a judicious
system of roads and canals, constructed for commerce and the mail,
would be "itself among the most efficient means for the more
complete defense of the United States"; [Footnote: Am. State Papers,
Miscellaneous, 534.] and he favored the use of the engineering corps
for surveying the routes and of federal troops for the actual work
of construction.

By 1818 the National Road [Footnote: Cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality
(Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xv.; Young, Cumberland Road, 15; Hulbert,
Historic Highways, X., chap. i.] had been constructed from
Cumberland, on the Potomac, across the mountains to Wheeling, on the
Ohio, and two years later Congress made appropriations for a survey
of the road westward to the Mississippi River. The panic of 1819,
however, left the treasury in such a condition that it was not until
1822 that the preservation and construction of this highway was
again taken up with vigor. In that year a bill was introduced
authorizing the president to cause toll-houses, gates, and turnpikes
to be erected on the Cumberland Road, and to appoint toll-gatherers,
with power to enforce the collection of tolls to be used for the
preservation of the road. The bill further provided for a system of
fines for violation of the laws of the road. It therefore involved
the question of the right of jurisdiction as well as of

The measure passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 87 to
68. The districts along the line of the Potomac and the Ohio, and
the regions tributary to the road in Pennsylvania and western
Virginia, were almost a unit in favor of the bill. Indeed, the whole
vote of the western states, with the exception of two members from
Tennessee, was given in the affirmative. But Pittsburgh, which
feared the diversion of her western trade to Baltimore, opposed the
bill. The area along the Susquehanna which looked to Baltimore also
voted in the negative, as did the majority of the delegation from
New York, who were apprehensive of the effect of the National Road
as a rival to the Erie Canal. The Senate passed the bill by the
decisive vote of 29 to 7.

Monroe vetoed this measure, on the ground that it implied a power to
execute a complete system of internal improvements, with the right
of jurisdiction and sovereignty. Accompanying his veto (May 4,
1822), he submitted "Views on the Subject of Internal Improvements."
[Footnote: Richardson, Messages and Papers, II., 142-183; Monroe,
Writings, VI., 216; Mason, Veto Power, 85; Nelson presidential
Influence on Int. Imp. (Iowa Journal of Hist, and Politics), IV.,
29, 30.] In this elaborate disquisition, he rehearsed the
constitutional history of internal improvements, and expounded his
conception of the construction of the Constitution, and of the
relation of the states and the nation under the theory of divided
sovereignty. Although he denied to the federal government the right
of jurisdiction and construction, he asserted that Congress had
unlimited power to raise money, and that "in its appropriation, they
have a discretionary power, restricted only by their duty to
appropriate it to purposes of common defense and of general, not
local, national, not state, benefit." Nevertheless, he strongly
recommended a system of internal improvements, if it could be
established by means of a constitutional amendment. Both houses
sustained the president's veto.

Acting upon Monroe's intimation of the power to appropriate money,
and following the line of least resistance, the next year an act was
passed making appropriations for repairs of the Cumberland Road. On
March 3, 1823, also, was signed the first of the national acts for
the improvement of harbors. [Footnote: U. S. Statutes at Large,
III., 780.] The irresistible demand for better internal
communications and the development of a multitude of local projects,
chief among them a new plan for uniting Chesapeake Bay with the Ohio
by a canal along the Potomac, resulted, in 1824, in the introduction
of the general survey bill, authorizing the president to cause
surveys to be made for such roads and canals as he deemed of
national importance for commercial, military, or postal purposes.
The evident intention of the bill was to prepare a programme for
appropriations for internal improvements on a national scale, and
for subscription to the stock of companies engaged in these
enterprises. The discussion of the general survey bill brought out
the significance of the problem of transportation, and revealed the
sectional divisions of the nation in clear light.

Henry Clay made an earnest effort to commit Congress to the exercise
of the power of construction of interstate highways and canals which
could not be undertaken by individual states or by combinations of
states, and which, if built at all, must be by the nation. He
recounted the attention given by Congress to the construction of
public buildings and light-houses, coast surveys, erection of sea-
walls in the Atlantic states--"everything on the margin of the
ocean, but nothing for domestic trade; nothing for the great
interior of the country." [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., 1
Sess., I., 1035.] "Not one stone," he said, "had yet been broken,
not one spade of earth removed, in any Western State." He boldly
claimed that the right to regulate commerce granted as fully the
power to construct roads and canals for the benefit of circulation
and trade in the interior as it did the power to promote coastwise
traffic. His speech was a strong assertion of the right of the west
to equality of treatment with the old sections of the country. "A
new world," said he, "has come into being since the Constitution was
adopted. Are the narrow, limited necessities of the old thirteen
states, of, indeed, parts only of the old thirteen states, as they
existed at the formation of the present Constitution, forever to
remain the rule of its interpretation?" [Footnote: Annals of Cong.,
18 Cong., 1 Sess., I., 1315; Colton, Private Corresp. of Clay, 81.]

In contrast with the united attitude of the west upon internal
improvements, which Henry Clay voiced with such lofty accent, the
south showed divisions which reflected opposing economic interests
in the section. Not only were the representatives of Maryland almost
a unit in support of the bill, but also the western districts of
Virginia and North Carolina, as well as a considerable fraction of
the representatives from South Carolina and Georgia, supported the
cause of the west on this occasion.

The opposition in the south found, perhaps, its most inflexible
expression in the speech of John Randolph, [Footnote: Annals of
Cong., 18 Cong., 1 Sess., I., 1296-1311.] who, with characteristic
recklessness and irresponsibility, dragged from its closet the
family skeleton of the south, and warned his fellow slaveholders
that, if Congress possessed power to do what was proposed by the
bill, they might emancipate every slave in the United States, "and
with stronger color of reason than they can exercise the power now
contended for." He closed by threatening the formation of
associations and "every other means short of actual insurrection."
"We shall keep on the windward side of treason," said he. [Footnote:
Cf. Macon's identical views in 1818 and 1824, Univ. of North
Carolina, James Sprunt Hist. Monographs, No. 2, pp. 47, 72.]

On the other hand, McDuffie, of South Carolina, the friend and
protege of Calhoun and a later leader of the nullification forces,
supported the measure and spoke as earnestly in favor of a liberal
construction of the Constitution as any of the most enthusiastic
supporters of the bill. He declared that the constitutional
convention "did not regard the state governments as sentinels upon
the watch-towers of freedom, or in any respect more worthy of
confidence than the general government."

When the bill came to the final vote in the House of
Representatives, New England gave 12 votes in favor and 26 against;
the middle states, 37 to 26 (New York, 7 to 24); the south, 23 to
34; the west, 43 to 0. Thus the bill carried by 115 to 86. As the
map shows, the opposition was chiefly located in New England and New
York and in a fragment of the old south. The entire west, including
the southwestern slave states, with Pennsylvania and the Potomac
Valley, acted together. In the Senate, the vote stood 24 to 18. Here
New England gave an almost solid vote against the bill.

Thus by the close of Monroe's administration the forces of
nationalism seemed to have triumphed in the important field of
internal improvements. It was the line of least resistance then, as
it had been in the days of the Annapolis Convention. [Footnote:
McLaughlin, Confederation and Constitution (Am. Nation, X.), chap,


THE TARIFF OF 1824 (1820-1824)

As has been shown in the last chapter, the attitude of portions of
the south towards strict construction was not inveterate upon
measures which promised advantages to that section. But the tariff
struggle revealed the spirit which arose when powers were asserted
unfavorable to any section. The failure of the tariff bill of 1820
[Footnote: See above, chap. ix.] was followed by other unsuccessful
attempts to induce a majority of Congress to revive the subject. The
messages of Monroe favored a moderate increase of duties; but it was
not until 1824, after the return of Henry Clay and his triumphant
election to the speakership, that Congress showed a protectionist
majority ably disciplined and led. [Footnote: For previous tariff
history, cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap.

The tariff bill of 1824 was supported, not as a revenue, but as a
protective measure. It proposed an increase of the duty upon iron,
hemp, cotton bagging, woolens, and cottons. Upon woolen goods, the
friends of protection desired to apply the minimum principle which
the tariff of 1816 had provided for cotton goods. But the cheap
woolens were mostly used for the clothing of southern slaves, and
the proposition for an increase of duty met with so strenuous a
resistance that in the outcome the cheap foreign goods bore a lower
rate of duty than did the high-priced products. Although the act
somewhat increased the protection upon woolen fabrics as a whole,
this was more than offset by the increased duty which was levied
upon raw wool in response to the demand of the wool-raising
interests of the country. [Footnote: Taussig, Tariff Hist., 75.]

Another struggle occurred over the protection of hemp. This product
was used both for the manufacture of the ropes essential to New
England shipping and for the cotton bagging used in the south. Thus
the shipping and the slave-holding sections were brought into union
in opposition to the provision. Nevertheless, this important
Kentucky interest received a substantial protection. The attempt to
secure a marked increase of the duty on iron bars resulted in a
compromise proposition which satisfied neither party and had little
effect upon domestic manufacture, while it increased the cost to the
consumer. The Senate amendments reduced the proposed rates on the
most important articles, so that, on the whole, the extreme
protectionists failed to carry their programme, although the bill
increased the duties upon the articles most essential to the
shipping and planting sections sufficiently to leave great
discontent. [Footnote: Stanwood, Amer. Tariff Controversies, I.,
chap. vii.]

In the debates upon this tariff, Henry Clay led the protectionist
forces, basing his arguments upon the general distress of the
country, which he explained by the loss of the foreign market for
agricultural products, and which he would remedy by building up a
home market by means of the support of manufactures--the creation of
an "American system." "We must naturalize the arts in our country,"
said he. Not the least significant portion of his plea for
protection was that in which he called attention to the great
diversity of interests--"agricultural, planting, farming,
commercial, navigating, fishing, manufacturing"--within the United
States. Some of these interests were, as he said, peculiar to
particular sections. "The inquiry should be in reference to the
great interests of every section of the Union (I speak not of minute
subdivisions); what would be done for those interests if that
section stood alone and separated from the residue of the Republic?
If they come into absolute collision with the interests of another
section, a reconciliation, if possible, should be attempted, by
mutual concession, so as to avoid a sacrifice of the prosperity of
either to that of the other." [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong.,
1 Sess., II., 1997; cf. Clay's letter to Brooke, August 28, 1823,
Clay, Private Corresp., 81.]

Perhaps the ablest speech on the other side was that of Webster,
[Footnote: Webster, Writings (National ed.), V., 94-149.] who
ridiculed Clay's discovery. "This favorite American policy," said
he, "is what America has never tried, and this odious foreign policy
is what, as we are told, foreign states have never pursued." He
denied the existence of general depression, although he admitted
that profits were lower and prices considerably depressed. Webster's
argument included an analysis of the theory of protection as against
free-trade, in which he made a classical statement of the opposition
to protection. In short, he represented the attitude of the
commercial classes, particularly those of New England, whose
interests were injured by any restraint of the freedom of exchange.
As yet these classes exercised a dominant influence in

Senator Hayne, of South Carolina, also argued the case against the
tariff with a grasp and power of presentation that was hardly second
to that of Webster. In particular he protested against compelling
the planting regions to pay the cost of a protective system. Two-
thirds of the whole amount of the domestic exports of the United
States, he argued, were composed of cotton, rice, and tobacco, and
from this trade arose the imports of manufactured goods which paid
the revenues of the United States, and which the protective system
rendered expensive and burdensome to his section. He warned the
manufacturers that the south would repeal the system at the first
opportunity, regardless of interests that might accrue under the
proposed measure. [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., 1 Sess., I.,

In the speeches of some of the representatives of the south was a
note of revolt not to be found in Webster's argument. For the first
time in the discussion of the tariff, the constitutional objection
was made prominent. It was argued that the power to impose taxes and
duties was given for the purpose of raising revenue, not for the
purpose of protection. If not the letter, at least the spirit, of
the Constitution was violated, so it was charged, by this distortion
of the power of taxation. The proceedings of the constitutional
convention were recited to show that a proposition conferring the
alleged power was voted down. To this, Clay gave the reply that the
clause on which the protectionists relied was the power to regulate
commerce with foreign nations.

Even the south, however, laid less stress upon the constitutional
argument than upon the injustice to the section. McDuffie, for
example, replying to Clay, [Footnote: Ibid., II., 2400 et seq.]
argued that no one of the great sections of the country, if it were
a separate nation, could advantageously apply the system of
protection. He warned the western states that the system would make
them tributary to the Atlantic states, [Footnote: Ibid., II., 2423.]
and that they had more to lose by alienating the friendship of the
south for a system of internal improvements which should facilitate
the sale of their meat products to the south than by a union with
the manufacturing interests. With respect to the south itself, he
declared that cotton, which alone constituted one-third of the whole
export of the Union, was in danger of losing the market of England
if we ceased to take the manufactures of that country. Protesting
that the protective system would strike at the root of their
prosperity, by enhancing the cost of the clothing of their slaves
and the bagging used to cover their cotton-bales, while at the same
time it put to hazard the sale of their great staple in the English
market, he yet declared that, if the bill should pass, "even with a
majority of a single vote, I shall, as bound by my allegiance,
submit to it as one of the laws of my country."

But if this South Carolina leader represented the attitude of his
state in showing moderation at this time, [Footnote: See Ames, State
Docs, on Federal Relations, No. 4, p. 6.] not so did the free-lance
John Randolph, of Virginia. "I do not stop here, sir," said he, "to
argue about the constitutionality of this bill; I consider the
Constitution a dead letter; I consider it to consist, at this time,
of the power of the General Government and the power of the States--
that is the Constitution." "I have no faith in parchment, sir; ... I
have faith in the power of the commonwealth of which I am an
unworthy son." "If, under a power to regulate trade, you prevent
exportation; if, with the most approved spring lancets, you draw the
last drop of blood from our veins; if, secundum artem, you draw the
last shilling from our pockets, what are the checks of the
Constitution to us? A fig for the Constitution! When the scorpion's
sting is probing to the quick, shall we stop to chop logic? ...
There is no magic in this word union." While he threatened forcible
resistance, he rejoiced in the combination of the shipping and
commercial classes of New England with the south in opposition to
the measure. "The merchants and manufacturers of Massachusetts, New
Hampshire, the province of Maine and Sagadahock," said he, "repel
this bill, whilst men in hunting-shirts, with deer-skin leggings and
moccasins on their feet, want protection for manufactures."

The bill passed the House of Representatives on April 16, 1824, by
the close vote of 107 to 102, and subsequently passed the Senate by
a small majority:

          New England          Middle Region          South
          M N V M  R C T         N N P  D T         M V  N S  G T
          e H t a  I o o         Y J a  e o         d a  C C  a o
                s    n t                l t                     t
                s    n a                  a                     a
                       l                  l                     l

Ayes . . .1 1 5 1  2 5 15       26 6 24 1 57        3 1  0  0 0 4
Nays . . .6 5 0 11 0 1 23        8 0  1 0  9        6 21 13 9 7 56

          Northwest and Kentucky         Southwest
          O  I I M K  T                  T A M L T
          h  n l o y  o                  e l i a o
          i  d        t                  n a s   t     Total
          o           a                  n   s   a
                      l                          l

Ayes . . .14 2 1 1 11 29                 2 0 0 0 2      107
Nays . . . 0 0 0 0  0 0                  7 3 1 3 14     102

By this analysis and the map, it is clear that the navigating states
were in opposition, while the manufacturing states were generally in
favor of the bill. The most important textile manufacturers of
Massachusetts, however, were not advocates of protection at this
time. The grain and wool producing states gave an overwhelming vote
(91 to 9) in favor of the attempt to provide a home market. The
planting states gave but 3 votes in favor to 64 against. [Footnote:
See the analysis in Niles' Register, XXVI., 113.] By comparison with
the map of the general survey bill, it is seen that the southern
half of the west was in a state of unstable equilibrium on these
sectional issues. It joined the Ohio Valley and the middle states in
supporting a system of internal improvements, while it transferred
its support to the old south on the question of the tariff. New
England, on the other hand, although divided, tended to unite its
strength with that of the south on both these measures. In general,
the map reveals the process of forming a northern section in
opposition to the south--the union of the Ohio Valley with the
middle states against the alliance of the south Atlantic seaboard
with the Gulf states. The division of forces exhibited in the
Missouri struggle was strikingly like the division now revealed on
the tariff question.

On the whole, the tariff of 1824 was distinctly a compromise
measure. Although the ad valorem duties on cotton and woolen goods
were raised, this was balanced by the doubled duty on raw wool.
Nevertheless, it aroused the opposition of the entire planting
section, at the same time that the manufacturers of woolen goods
felt that their interests had been sacrificed. The tariff question
was, in fact, only postponed. In the history of party development,
however, Clay's system of internal improvements and tariff, as shown
in this session of Congress, had a significance not easily missed;
and state sovereignty sentiment in the south grew steadily after
these measures. [Footnote: See chapter xviii, below; cf. Antes,
State Docs, on Federal Relations, No. 4, pp. 4-13.]


THE ELECTION OF 1824 (1822-1825)

As we have seen, [Footnote: See above, chap. x.] the dissensions in
Monroe's cabinet approached the point of rupture by the spring and
summer of 1822, when the spectacle was presented of the friends of
the secretary of the treasury making war upon the measures of the
secretary of war, and even antagonizing the president himself.
Crawford's followers gained the name of the "radicals," and declared
as their principles, democracy, economy, and reform. [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, VI., 56; Mass. Hist. Soc., Proceedings, XIX., 40.]
Professing to represent the pure Jeffersonian republicanism of the
"Revolution of 1800," they appealed to the adherents of the Virginia
school of politics for support. [Footnote: Edwards, Illinois, 489.]
Jefferson, although refusing to come out openly, was clearly in
sympathy with Crawford's candidacy: he believed that the old parties
still continued, although under different names, and that the issue
would finally be reduced to a contest between a northern and a
southern candidate.

"You see," said he, in a letter to Gallatin, "many calling
themselves Republicans and preaching the rankest doctrine of the old
Federalists. One of the prominent candidates [Adams] is presumed to
be of this party; the other [Crawford] a Republican of the old
school, and a friend to the barrier of state rights, as provided by
the Constitution against the danger of consolidation." [Footnote:
Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 235; cf. 225-227, 237, 261,
264, 280.] Pennsylvania and New York, he thought, would decide the
question, and the issue would depend upon whether or not the
"Missouri principle" became involved.

At this time parties and principles were still plastic. This is
illustrated by a letter written in the spring of 1823 to Monroe, by
John Taylor, of Caroline, the leading exponent of the orthodox
Virginia tenets of state sovereignty. The writer was evidently
stirred by the recent publication, in Calhoun's Washington organ, of
a series of letters signed A. B., [Footnote: Edwards, Illinois, 525;
National Intelligencer, April 21-23, 1823; Am. State Papers Finance,
V., 1-145.] in which Crawford was denounced for corrupt dealings
with the banks, collusion with slave-traders, and intrigues in
general. Calhoun himself had just ended a visit with Taylor when the
latter wrote, bitterly condemning the "example of obtaining the
presidency by crafty intrigues and pecuniary influence," as tending
to transfer power to a moneyed aristocracy. Neither Calhoun nor
Adams, in his opinion, was open to this objection, and neither of
them, he thought, would prefer a protective tariff to a navy as a
means of national defense. While he admitted his ignorance of
Adams's views on the subject of division of power between the
federal and state governments, he declared that Calhoun had no
advantage on this point, for although the latter professed to
consider the distribution of powers between the states and the
central authority as "a distinguishing pre-eminence in our form of
government," yet, in the opinion of Taylor, he destroyed "this pre-
eminence by endowing the federal government with a supremacy over
the state governments whenever they come in conflict." This was
important testimony, following immediately on Calhoun's visit, and
coming from the pen of a man who was primarily interested in the

In spite of these objections, which would seem to be insuperable
from the point of view of this distinguished expositor of state
sovereignty, Taylor was ready to take the initiative in a movement
against Crawford, if Monroe, Jefferson, and Madison agreed. Although
as between Calhoun and Adams, he intimated that "the Missouri
question" made a distinction of considerable weight, [Footnote:
Taylor to Monroe, April 29, 1823, Monroe Papers, MSS. in Cong.
Libr.; cf. "Farmer's" attacks on Crawford as a protectionist, in
Richmond Enquirer, noted in Niles' Register, XXIV., 306. See Calhoun
to Gouverneur, April 28, 1823, N. Y. Publ. Libr., Bulletin, 1899, p.
324; Adams, Memoirs, VI., 356.] he did not press the point. James
Barbour, the other senator from Virginia, also seriously thought of
supporting Adams, [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 242, 450-452; see
also Taylor's interview with Adams, May 26, 1824, ibid., 356, 357.]
and it is clear that the secretary of state at this time was not
regarded as unsafe in the Old Dominion. In the spring and summer of
1823, however, Crawford seemed to be clearly in the lead. He was
supported by a well-organized press, which took its tone from the
Washington newspapers; and until Calhoun, in retaliation,
established a paper of his own to denounce Crawford's management of
his department, he had effective control of the most influential
organs of public opinion. [Footnote: Ibid., 47, 56, 57, 60, 62-64,
66.] He was a master of political manipulation; but among his rivals
were men of almost equal skill in this respect.

Clay was again chosen speaker, on his return to the House of
Representatives in December, 1823, by a triumphant majority, and, as
the session advanced, he and Calhoun, with all the arts of
fascinating conversation, plied the old and new members. At this
critical period in his campaign, Crawford was overwhelmed by a
stroke of paralysis (September, 1823), which wrecked his huge frame
and shattered his career. Shut in a darkened room, threatened with
blindness and the loss of speech, bled by the doctors twenty-three
times in three weeks, unable to sign his official papers with his
own hand, he was prevented from conducting his own political battle.
But he kept his courage and his purpose, concealing his real
condition from all but his most trusted intimates. Not until April,
1824, was he able to attend cabinet meetings, and within a month
after that he suffered a relapse, which prevented his active
participation in his duties until the fall. [Footnote: National
Intelligencer, September 15, 1824; Life of W. W. Seaton, 160; King,
Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 539; Adams, Memoirs, VI., 130, 270,
275, 356, 357, 387, 428, 435, 439; Univ. of North Carolina, James
Sprunt Hist. Monographs, No. 2, pp. 69, 71; Edwards, Illinois, 492.]

Adams had the New England scruples against urging his cause
personally, and took the attitude that the office of president
should come from merit, not from manipulation. [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, IV., 64, 242, 298, V., 89, 129, 298, 525; Dwight, Travels,
I., 266.] Moreover, he saw that the practice of soliciting votes
from members of Congress would render the executive subservient to
that body. Although his uncompromising temper unfitted him for the
tactics of political management, he was an adept in the grand
strategy of the contest, and he noted every move of his adversaries.
His replies to attacks were crushing, for he had the gift of clear
and forcible exposition. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V., 361, 496-
535, VI., 116-118; King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 475;
Gallatin, Writings, II., 246.] But his greatest strength in the
presidential contest lay in the fact that he was the only promising
northern candidate.

Early in the campaign, Calhoun commented on the fact that five
candidates were from the slave-holding states--a circumstance which,
in his opinion, would give Adams great advantages if he knew how to
improve them. [Footnote: Edwards, Illinois, 492.] Naturally,
therefore, Adams gained the influential support of Rufus King, the
chief antagonist of the slave section. At first decidedly hostile,
King's final adhesion was given to him, not out of personal regard,
but because he believed that the public should be aroused against
"longer submission to a Southern Master.... He is the only northern
Candidate, and as between him and the black Candidates I prefer
him." [Footnote: King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 508, 510.]
Steadily Adams increased his following in reluctant New England.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XXIII., 322, 342; Clay, Private
Corresp., 98; Adams, Memoirs, VI., 235.] In New York he had an
element of strength in the fact that the population was nearly
evenly divided between the natives of that state and the settlers
from New England. Of the delegation from the state of New York in
the seventeenth Congress, for example, those who were born in New
England were about equal to those born in the state itself. Nearly
forty per cent, of the members of the New York constitutional
convention of 1821 were born in New England. [Footnote: King, Life
and Corresp. of King, VI., 413; Carter and Stone, Reports of New
York Convention, 637; Force, Calendar (1823).] The adhesion of ex-
Speaker Taylor, another of the champions of restriction in the
Missouri struggle, furnished an able manager in New York.

Even the attitude of Van Buren was for a time in doubt, for he would
gladly have retired from politics to accept a place on the bench of
the supreme court of the United States; but Adams and King pressed
his candidacy for this position in vain upon the president, and Van
Buren finally gave his full support to Crawford. [Footnote: King,
Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 512-517, 518-527; Adams, Memoirs,
VI., 168, 173; Crawford to Van Buren, August 1, 1823, Van Buren
Papers (MSS.); Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1904, p. 178.] So little did
Adams appreciate the popular movement that was gathering about
Jackson's name, that he advised his followers to support the "Old
Hero" for the vice-presidency, "a station in which the General could
hang no one, and in which he would need to quarrel with no one. His
name and character would serve to restore the forgotten dignity of
the place, and it would afford an easy and dignified retirement to
his old age." [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 333.] In January,
1824, on the anniversary of the victory of New Orleans, Adams gave a
great ball, attended by over a thousand people, in honor of his
rival. [Footnote: Ibid., 220; Sargent, Public Men and Events, I.,

After Jackson's return from the governorship of Florida, in 1821,
his star steadily rose in the political horizon. His canvass was
conducted by his neighbor, Major Lewis, who was one of the most
astute politicians in American history, able subtly to influence the
attitude of his volcanic candidate and to touch the springs of
political management. On July 20, 1822, the legislature of Tennessee
formally nominated the general for the presidency. [Footnote:
Parton, Jackson, III., 20; Niles' Register, XXII., 402.]

This gave the signal of revolt by the states against the
congressional caucus. Clay rallied his own forces, and in 1822 and
1823 was nominated [Footnote: Niles' Register, XXIII., 245, 342;
Ohio Monitor, January 4, 1823; National Republican (Cincinnati),
January 14,1823; King, Life and Corresp., VI., 487; Clay, Private
Corresp., 70. ] by members of the legislatures of Missouri,
Kentucky, Ohio, and Louisiana. [Footnote: National Intelligencer,
April 12, 1823; Ky. Reporter, April 21. 1823.] Alabama nominated
Jackson; and Mississippi, by a tie vote, proposed both Adams and
Jackson. [Footnote: McMaster, United States, V., 68.] These
nominations by states showed that, however the west might be
divided, it was a unit in resistance to the selection of a president
by a combination of congressmen. It was believed that the spirit of
the Constitution was violated by this method, which made the
executive depend on the legislative body for nomination; and that a
minority candidate might win by the caucus. This became the rallying
cry of Jackson, whose canvass was conducted on the issue of the
right of the people to select their president; [Footnote: Sargent,
Public Men and Events, I., 57; Parton, Jackson, III., 17, 40, 41.]
and the prevalent discontent and industrial depression made the
voters responsive to this idea. The movement was one of permanent
significance in American history, for it represented the growth of
democracy, and led the way to the institution of the national
nominating convention.

In the fall of 1823, Tennessee returned Jackson to the Senate,
having chosen him over one of the prominent leaders of the Crawford
party, and, shortly afterwards, the legislature sent to the other
states a vigorous resolution, asking them to unite in putting down
the congressional caucus. [Footnote: Parton, Jackson, III., 21;
Niles' Register, XXV., 114, 137, 197, 292; McMaster, United States,
V., 60; Tyler, Tylers, I., 341; Richmond Enquirer, January 1, 6, 13,
1824.] In Virginia and many other states the Tennessee resolutions
gave rise to agitation which strengthened the popular feeling
against congressional dictation. [Footnote: McMaster, United States,
V., 60-62, 64; Dallinger, Nominations, 19 n., 54.] Although Adams at
first considered the congressional caucus as one of the "least
obnoxious modes of intrigue," he also finally threw his influence
against the system and announced that he would not accept a
nomination by that body. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 191, 236.]

Realizing that, in spite of his illness, Crawford could command the
largest following in Congress, the friends of all the other
candidates united their forces in an effort to prevent the meeting
of the caucus. Already it was evident to the Georgian's supporters
that the only thing that could bring him the victory was insistence
upon party unity and discipline, and on February 14, 1824, sixty-six
of the two hundred and sixteen Democrats in Congress gathered for
the last congressional caucus which nominated a president. That
these were practically all Crawford men was shown by his nomination
with only four opposing votes. [Footnote: Dallinger, Nominations,
19; Niles' Register, XXV., 388-392, 403; Hammond, Pol. Hist, of
N.Y., II., 149; McMaster, United States, V., 64; Life of W.W.
Seaton, 173; Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., I Sess., I., 358.] Gallatin
had been persuaded to return from Paris, and he received the
nomination for vice-president, in order to hold the state of
Pennsylvania in Crawford's column; but it proved a forlorn hope, for
this old companion-in-arms of Jefferson found Pennsylvania "Jackson

Calhoun, seeing that he had lost the northern state on which he had
founded his hopes of success, and despairing of making inroads upon
Crawford's southern forces after the congressional caucus, sought
his political fortunes in an alliance with his rival. [Footnote:
Clay, Private Corresp., 87.] The result was that, in a state
nominating convention held at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (March 4,
1824), Jackson was almost unanimously nominated by that state for
president, and Calhoun was named for the vice-presidency. In vain
the managers of Crawford sought to throw discredit upon Jackson by
the publication of his correspondence with Monroe, in which he had
pleaded for recognition of the Federalists; [Footnote: Parton,
Jackson, II., 357, III., 20; Monroe, Writings.] the letters added to
his strength, and finally Gallatin was induced to withdraw from the
unequal contest, in order that an attempt might be made to persuade
Henry Clay to accept the vice-presidency under Crawford. [Footnote:
Gallatin, Works, II., 297-300; Adams, Life of Gallatin, 604; Clay,
Private Corresp., 100-103; Sargent, Public Men and Events, I., 57.]

The conflict was not entirely a matter of personal politics. Jackson
had raised the popular movement against the congressional caucus
into a distinct issue--the right of the people to choose their own
president. Clay's "American system" of internal improvements and the
protective tariff furnished others. We have seen that these subjects
were hotly debated in Congress during the spring months of 1824. As
the pre-eminent champion of these interests, Clay had a large
following in the states of the Ohio Valley, as well as in New York
The early popularity of Calhoun in Pennsylvania was also due, in
part, to his record as a friend of tariff and internal improvements.
Upon that subject, on July 3, 1824, he gave an exposition of his
constitutional principles to Garnett, of Virginia, in which he
showed some tendency to moderate his position. [Footnote: Houston,
Nullification in S. C., 143.] When interrogated upon his views in
respect to the tariff, Jackson replied, in a letter to Coleman,
avowing himself a moderate protectionist and a supporter of the
doctrine of the promotion of manufactures in order to create a home
market; and in the Senate he voted for the tariff of 1824, and in
favor of internal improvements. [Footnote: Parton, Jackson, III.,
34, 35; Niles' Register, XXVI., 245; Wheeler, Hist, of Cong., II.,
231.] Crawford was embarrassed by the need of reconciling his
southern support with his following in the middle states upon these
subjects. While his treasury reports indicated a preference for a
revenue tariff, they were sufficiently ambiguous to create
opposition in the south and a loss of support in the north. The
issue of internal improvements he evaded by professing himself in
favor of a constitutional amendment, for which he tried in vain to
secure the support of his friends in the Georgia legislature.
[Footnote: King, Life and Corresp. of King, VI., 496, 500; Niles'
Register, XXIV, 306; Gilmer, Sketches, 294.]

Adams announced that his policy with reference to the opposing
interests of the country was "conciliation, not collision"; but he
declared that there was no constitutional question involved, either
in the tariff or in internal improvements, [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, VI., 353, 451; cf. 343.] and he was frankly in favor of the
latter, while he professed himself satisfied with the tariff of
1824, as a reasonable compromise between the conflicting interests.
If changed at all, he believed that the tariff should be reduced. An
attempt was made to bring him into disrepute in the south for his
negotiation of a convention in 1824 with England for the
international regulation of the slave-trade. This subject had been
forced upon his reluctant attention early in his career as secretary
of state. While he was willing to join in declaring that traffic
piracy, he was very proud of his record as a steadfast opponent of
the right of search in any form. It was too valuable political
capital to be given up, even if he had not espoused the cause with
all his energy. To all propositions, therefore, for conceding the
right of search of suspected slavers, Adams had turned a deaf ear,
as he did to proposals of mixed courts to try cases of capture. But
in the convention of 1824, declaring the slave-trade piracy under
the law of nations, he had offered to concede the right of British
vessels to cruise along our coasts to intercept slavers, and this
clause the Senate struck out, whereupon England refused to ratify
it.[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 321, 338, 345; Monroe, Writings,
VII., 22; King, Life and Corresp. of King, 571, 572; DuBois, Slave
Trade, 139, 140.]

On the whole, however, while candidates were forced to declare
themselves on important questions, and while there were distinct
sectional groupings in Congress, which revealed conflicting
interests in economic policy, issues were not clearly drawn in this
campaign. Indeed, it was difficult for any one of the candidates to
stand on a clear-cut platform without losing some of the support
essential to his success. "Could we hit upon a few great principles,
and unite their support with that of Crawford," wrote his friend
Cobb, shortly before the election, "we could succeed beyond doubt."
[Footnote: Cobb, Leisure Labors, 216; Shepard, Van Buren, 92.]

As the year 1824 drew towards its close, the heat of the struggle
was transferred to New York. Nowhere was the revulsion of popular
feeling against caucus control more clearly manifested than in that
state. The feeling was aggravated by the fact that the Albany
Regency, under Van Buren, stubbornly refused to concede the popular
demand for the repeal of the state law for choice of presidential
electors by the legislature. The political machine's control of the
legislature insured New York's vote to Crawford; but if the choice
were confided to the people, no one could predict the result. Out of
these conditions a new combination sprang up in New York, which took
the name of the "People's party," and sought not only to transfer
the choice of electors to the people, but to overturn the Albany
Regency. So rapidly did the discordant elements of New York
Clintonians and anti-Clintonians combine in this party, that
Crawford's managers, in an effort to break the combination,
introduced a resolution in the legislature removing DeWitt Clinton
from his office of canal commissioner. The purpose was to split the
People's party by compelling its members to revive their old
antagonisms by taking sides for or against Clinton. Although the
resolution was carried by a decisive majority, the indignity placed
upon the champion of the Erie Canal aroused popular resentment and
increased the revolt against the Regency. In September, 1824, the
People's party met in a state convention at Utica and nominated
Clinton for governor. [Footnote: On the New York campaign, see
Rammelkamp, Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1904, p. 177; Hammond, Pol,
Hist, of N. Y., II., chaps, xxix.-xxxii.; Weed, Autobiography, chap.
xv.; McMaster, United States, V., 71-73.]

While this campaign (which resulted in an overwhelming victory for
the People's party) was in progress, the legislature met to choose
electors. So clearly marked was the trend of public opinion that
many members broke away from their allegiance to Crawford. The
Senate nominated electors favorable to him, but in the Assembly the
Adams men predominated, although they were not in a majority. After
several days of deadlock, a combination ticket, made up of Adams
electors and certain Clay men who had been named on the Senate's
ticket, was suddenly presented to the Assembly and passed, with the
aid of Crawford men, who thought that if the matter could be brought
to a joint ballot they could then win and exclude Clay from the
contest. But the Adams men had conciliated the supporters of Clay by
guaranteeing to them five electoral votes, which were expected, if
the ultimate choice of the president should come to the House of
Representatives, to make Clay one of the three candidates before
that body. [Footnote: Clay, Private Corresp., 99, 104, 106; National
Intelligencer, September 15, 1824; Van Buren to Crawford, November
17, 1824; Van Buren Papers (Cong. Libr.).] The Clay following,
therefore, supported the Adams ticket on the joint ballot, with the
result that Adams secured 25 electors, Clay 7, and Crawford 4. When
the electoral college met in December, Clay lost three of his votes,
so that New York finally gave 26 to Adams, 5 to Crawford, 4 to Clay,
and 1 to Jackson. Thus the Adams men had failed to carry out their
agreement with the followers of Clay; had not these three Clay votes
been withdrawn he would have tied Crawford for third place.
Louisiana, although New York's electoral college voted in ignorance
of the fact, had already deserted Clay. [Footnote: N. Y. American,
December 3, 1824; N. Y. Com. Adv., December 14, 1824; Weed,
Autobiography, 128, is in error; L. E. Aylsworth, Clay in Elec. of
1824 (MS. thesis).] The choice of electors in Louisiana was made by
the legislature, in the absence of several Clay men, and the
combined Jackson and Adams ticket received a majority of only two
votes over Clay. [Footnote: Sargent, Public Men and Events, I., 67;
Niles' Register, XXVII., 257; Adams, Memoirs, VI., 446.] Thus
vanished the latter's hopes of becoming one of the three candidates
to be voted on by the House of Representatives.

In the country as a whole, Jackson received 99 electoral votes,
Adams 84, Crawford 41, and Clay 37. For the vice-presidency, Calhoun
was chosen by a vote of 182, while Sanford, of New York, received
the vote of Ohio, together with a portion of that of Kentucky and
New York; Virginia voted for Macon, of North Carolina; Georgia for
Van Buren; and scattering votes were given for Jackson and Clay. No
presidential candidate had a majority, and, in accordance with the
Constitution, the House of Representatives was to decide between the
three highest candidates.

To Clay, powerful in Congress, fell the bitter honor of deciding
between his rivals. Jackson had a decisive plurality of the
electoral vote, and even the Kentucky legislature, under the
dominance of the "relief party, "urged the representatives from that
state to cast their vote in his favor.[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs,
VI., 446.] But although Jackson was popular in the west, Clay had
long been hostile to the candidacy of this military chieftain, and
could not well alter his opinion. Moreover, Clay's presidential
ambitions stood in the way of this choice. It would not have been
easy for him to become Jackson's successor, both because of the
difficulty of electing two successive candidates from the west and
because Calhoun had already anticipated him in the alliance. With
Crawford, he was on better terms; but that candidate was clearly in
the minority, his health was gravely impaired, and his following was
made up largely of the opponents of the policies which Clay
represented.[Footnote: Ibid., VII., 4; Niles' Register, XXVII.,
386.] He determined, therefore, to use his influence in behalf of
Adams--the rival who had borne away from him the secretaryship of
state and whose foreign policy had been the target of his most
persistent attacks. On the other hand, the recognition of the
Spanish-American republics and the announcement of the Monroe
Doctrine had made Adams in a sense the heir of Clay's own foreign
policy, and, in the matter of tariff and internal improvements,
Adams was far more in accord with him than was Crawford.

As the day approached on which the House was to make its choice,
friends of Clay, including his "messmate," Letcher, of Kentucky,
sought Adams to convey to him the friendly attitude of Clay and
their hope that their chieftain might serve himself by supporting
Adams.[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 447, 457, 473-475.] They made
it perfectly clear that by this they intended to suggest for Clay a
membership in his cabinet. Without giving explicit promises, Adams
made it equally clear to these visitors that, if he were chosen by
the votes of western delegations, he should naturally look to the
west for much of the support that he should need. In short, Adams's
diary, like a book of judgment, shows that he walked perilously, if
safely, along the edge of his conscience at this time. "Incedo super
ignes,"[Footnote: Ibid., 453.] he wrote--"I walk over fires." But
his diary records no vulgar bargaining with Clay, although he talked
over with him the general principles which he would follow in his

The adhesion of Clay by no means assured Adams's election: the
result was not fully certain until the actual vote was given.
Missouri and Illinois were long in doubt,[Footnote: Ibid., 469.] and
in the case of both of these states the vote was cast by a single
person. Cook, of Illinois, was a personal friend of Adams, and,
although the plurality of the electoral vote of that state had been
in favor of Jackson, Cook, giving a strained interpretation of his
pre-election promises to follow the will of his constituency, cast
his vote in favor of Adams. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 443,
473, 476, 495; Edwards, Illinois, 261-265.] With Scott, of Missouri,
Adams made his peace in an interview wherein he gave him assurances
with respect to newspaper patronage and the retention of his
brother, a judge in Arkansas territory, who was threatened with the
loss of his office because he had killed his colleague in a duel. He
also secured the vote of Louisiana, by the one delegate who held the
balance of power; and he won the Maryland member who had its
decisive vote, by the statement given through Webster, that his
administration would not proscribe the Federalists. [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, VI., 492, 499; Webster, Writings (National ed.),
XVII., 378.] Friends of all the other candidates were busy in
proposing combinations and making promises which cannot be traced to
their principals. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 476, 495, 513;
Clay, Private Corresp., 109, 111; Parton, Jackson, III., 56.]

When the vote was taken, Adams was found to have thirteen states,
Jackson seven, and Crawford four. [Footnote: See map.] Adams
controlled New England, New York, and the Ohio Valley, with the
exception of Indiana, together with Maryland, Missouri, and
Louisiana. The grouping of the Jackson vote showed a union of the
states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey with South Carolina,
Tennessee, and the cotton states of the southwest. The Crawford
territory included Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, and Delaware.
Van Buren had received the electoral vote of Georgia for the vice-
presidency, and he still exercised a powerful influence in New York.
Adams had to face, therefore, the possibility of a union between two
of the ablest politicians in the nation, Calhoun and Van Buren, both
of whom saw that their political fortunes were involved in the
triumph of Andrew Jackson; and Jackson's popularity was
extraordinary even in the western states which voted for Adams. Even
as he saw victory approaching, the New England leader was filled
with gloomy forebodings over the prospects. "They are nattering for
the immediate issue," he recorded in his diary, "but the fearful
condition of them is that success would open to a far severer trial
than defeat."



For eight years President Monroe had administered the executive
department of the federal government-years that have been called the
"Era of Good Feeling." The reader who has followed the evidences of
factional controversy among the rival presidential candidates in the
cabinet, and noted the wide-spread distress following the panic of
1819, the growing sectional jealousies, the first skirmishes in the
slavery struggle, and the clamor of a democracy eager to assert its
control and profoundly distrustful of the reigning political powers,
will question the reality of this good feeling. On the other hand,
in spite of temporary reverses, the nation as a whole was bounding
with vigor in these years of peace after war; and if in truth party
was not dead, and a golden age had not yet been given to the
American people, at least the heat of formal party contest had been
for a time allayed. The bitterness of political warfare in the four
years which we are next to consider might well make the
administration of the last of the Virginia dynasty seem peaceful and
happy by contrast.

Monroe's presidential career descended to a close in a mellow sunset
of personal approval, despite the angry clouds that gathered on the
horizon. He had grown in wisdom by his experiences, and, although
not a genius, he had shown himself able, by patient and
dispassionate investigation, to reach judgments of greater value
than those of more brilliant but less safe statesmen. Candor, fair-
mindedness, and magnanimity were attributed to him even by those who
were engaged in bitter rivalry for the office which he now laid
down. He was not rapid or inflexible in his decisions between the
conflicting views of his official family; but in the last resort he
chose between policies, accepted responsibility, and steered the
ship of state between the shoals and reefs that underlay the
apparently placid sea of the "Era of Good Feeling." How useful were
his services in these transitional years appeared as soon as John
Quincy Adams grasped, with incautious hands, the helm which Monroe
relinquished.[Footnote: On Monroe's personal traits, see Adams,
Memoirs, IV., 240 et passim; J. Q. Adams, Eulogy on the Life and
Character of James Monroe; Schouler, United States, IV., 201-207.]
"Less possessed of your confidence in advance than any of my
predecessors," wrote President Adams, in his first annual message,
"I am deeply conscious of the prospect that I shall stand more and
oftener in need of your indulgence." In his reply to the
notification of his election by the House, after adverting to the
fact that one of his competitors had received a larger minority of
the electoral vote than his own, he declared that, if his refusal of
the office would enable the people authoritatively to express their
choice, he should not hesitate to decline; [Footnote: Richardson,
Messages and Papers, II., 293.] he believed that perhaps two-thirds
of the people were adverse to the result of the election.[Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, VII., 98; cf. ibid., VI., 481.] In truth, the
position of the new president was a delicate one, and he was
destined neither to obtain the indulgence asked nor the popular
ratification which he craved. By receiving his office from the hands
of the House of Representatives in competition with a candidate who
had a larger electoral vote, he fell heir to the popular opposition
which had been aroused against congressional intrigue, and
especially against the selection of the president by the
congressional caucus. More than this, it was charged that Clay's
support was the result of a corrupt bargain, by which the Kentucky
leader was promised the office of secretary of state. This
accusation was first publicly made by an obscure Pennsylvania
member, George Kremer, who, in an unsigned communication to a
newspaper, when Clay's decision to vote for Adams was first given
out, reported that overtures were said to have been made by the
friends of Adams to the friends of Clay, offering him the
appointment of secretary of state for his aid to elect Adams; and
that the friends of Clay gave this information to the friends of
Jackson, hinting that for the same price they would close with the
Tennesseean. When these overtures, said the writer, were rejected,
Clay transferred his interest to Adams. [Footnote: Niles' Register,
XXVII., 353.]

Stung to the quick, Clay rushed into print with a denunciation of
the writer as a dastard and a liar, and held him responsible to the
laws which govern men of honor. [Footnote: Ibid., 355.] In reply to
this evident invitation to a duel, Kremer avowed his authorship and
his readiness to prove his charges. If Clay had known the identity
of his traducer, he would hardly have summoned him to the field of
honor, for Kremer was a well-meaning but credulous and thick-headed
rustic noted solely for his leopard-skin overcoat. The speaker,
therefore, abandoned his first idea, and asked of the House an
investigation of the charges, which Kremer reiterated his readiness
to prove. But when the investigating committee was ready to take
testimony, the Pennsylvania congressman refused to appear. He was,
in fact, the tool of Jackson's managers, who greatly preferred to
let the scandal go unprobed by Congress. If Clay transferred his
following to Adams, the charge would gain credence with the masses;
if he were not made secretary of state, it would be alleged that
honest George Kremer had exposed the bargain and prevented its
consummation. In vain, in two successive and elaborate addresses,
[Footnote: Address of 1825 and of 1827, in Clay, Works (Colton's
ed.), V., 299, 341.] did Clay marshal evidence that, before he left
Kentucky, he had determined to vote for Adams in preference to
Crawford or Jackson, and that there was no proof of Kremer's charge.
[Footnote: Clay, Address to the Public (1827), 52; ibid., Works
(Colton's ed.), IV., 109; Adams, Memoirs, VII., 4.] In vain was
evidence produced to show that friends of Jackson [Footnote: Clay,
Works (Colton's ed.), I., chaps. xvi., xvii.; Parton, Jackson, III.,
56, 110-116.] and Crawford [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 464, 513,
VII., 91.] solicited Clay's support by even more unblushing offers
of political reward than those alleged against Adams. To the end of
his career, the charge remained a stumbling-block to Clay's
ambitions, and the more he denounced and summoned witnesses
[Footnote: See, for example, testimony of congressmen, Niles'
Register, XXVIII., 69, 133, 134, 203; Address of David Trimble
(1828).] the more the scandal did its poisonous work.

After all, it was Adams who gave the charge immortality. Even if he
had appreciated the power of public feeling he would not have
hesitated. If the accusation was a challenge to the spirited
Kentuckian, it was a call to duty to the Puritan. Two days after his
election, Adams, asking Monroe's advice about the composition of the
cabinet, announced that he had already determined to appoint Clay
secretary of state, "considering it due," said he, "to his talents
and services to the western section of the Union, whence he comes,
and to the confidence in me manifested by their delegations."
[Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 508.] Clay spoke lightly of the
threatened opposition as a mere temporary ebullition of
disappointment at the issue of the election, [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, VI., 509.] and after a short interval accepted the
appointment. [Footnote: For his reasons, see Clay, Works (Colton's
ed.), IV., 114, 192.]

Up to this time Jackson had kept his temper remarkably; but now that
Adams had called to the department of state the man who made him
president, the man who justified his choice by the statement that
Jackson was a "military chieftain," the great deep of his wrath was
stirred. Clay seemed to him the "Judas of the West," and he wrote a
letter, probably for publication, passionately defending the
disinterestedness of his military services, calling attention to the
fact that Clay had never yet risked himself for his country, and
soothing himself in defeat by this consolation: "No midnight taper
burnt by me; no secret conclaves were held; no cabals entered into
to persuade any one to a violation of pledges given or of
instructions received. By me no plans were concerted to impair the
pure principles of our republican institutions, nor to prostrate
that fundamental maxim, which maintains the supremacy of the
people's will." [Footnote: Niles' Register, XXVIII., 20; Parton,
Jackson, III., 77.]

On his way back to Tennessee, he spread broadcast in conversation
his conviction that "honest George Kremer" had exposed a corrupt
bargain between Clay and Adams, [Footnote: Parton, Jackson, III.,
107.] and to this belief he stuck through the rest of his life,
appealing, when his witnesses failed him, to the stubborn fact of
Clay's appointment. [Footnote: Parton, Jackson, III., 110-116.] In
October, 1825, Tennessee renominated Jackson, who accepted, and
resigned his seat in the Senate, accompanying his action with a plea
for a constitutional amendment rendering congressmen ineligible to
office during their term of service and for two years thereafter,
except in cases of judicial appointment. The purpose was evidently
to wage a new campaign to give effect to "the will of the people."
[Footnote: Ibid., III., 95; Niles' Register, XXIX., 155.]

Although he realized that an organized opposition would be formed,
Adams sought to give a non-partisan character to his administration.
[Footnote: Richardson, Messages and Papers, II., 295-297.] In spite
of the low opinion expressed in his diary for the honesty and
political rectitude of the secretary of the treasury, he asked him
to retain his office, but Crawford refused. [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, VI., 506, 508.] Ascertaining that Gallatin would also
decline the place, [Footnote: Ibid., Life of Gallatin, 607;
Gallatin, Writings, II., 301.] he appointed Richard Rush, of
Pennsylvania, then serving as minister to England. Jackson's friends
made it clear that he would take unkindly the offer of the
department of war, and Adams gave that office to James Barbour, of
Virginia. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 510; cf. ibid., 450.] He
retained Southard, of New Jersey, as secretary of the navy, William
Wirt, of Virginia, as attorney-general, and McLean, of Ohio, as
postmaster-general. The latter selection proved peculiarly
unfortunate, since it gave the influence and the patronage of the
post-office to the friends of Jackson. For the mission to England,
he first selected Clinton, and after his refusal he persuaded Rufus
King to take the post. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 523.] Since
King's acceptance of the senatorship at the hands of the Van Buren
element in New York, he had been less a representative of the
Federalists than in his earlier days; but the appointment met in
some measure the obligations which Adams owed to supporters in that

Far from organizing party machinery and using the federal office-
holders as a political engine, he rigidly refused to introduce
rotation in office at the expiration of the term of the incumbent--a
principle which "would make the Government a perpetual and
unintermitting scramble for office." [Footnote: Ibid., 521.] He
determined to renominate every person against whom there was no
complaint which would have warranted his removal. By this choice he
not only retained many outworn and superfluous officers and thus
fostered a bureaucratic feeling, [Footnote: Fish, Civil Service, 76-
78.] but he also furnished to his enemies local managers of the
opposition, for these office-holders were, in general, appointees of
Crawford, in his own interest, or of McLean, in the interest of
Calhoun and Jackson.

So rigidly did Adams interpret his duty in the matter that only
twelve removals altogether were made during his term. [Footnote:
Fish, Civil Service, 72.] He even retained the surveyor of the port
of Philadelphia, whose negligence had occasioned the loss of large
sums of money to the government and whose subordinates were hostile
to Adams. Under such conditions, the friends of the administration
had to contend not only against their enemies, but against the Adams
administration itself, which left its power in the hands of its
enemies to be wielded against its friends. [Footnote: Adams,
Memoirs, VII., 163.] Binns, the editor of one of the leading
administration papers, in an interview was informed that the
president did not intend to make any removals. "I bowed
respectfully," said the editor, "assuring the president that I had
no doubt the consequence would be that he himself would be removed
so soon as the term for which he had been elected had expired. This
intimation gave the president no concern." [Footnote: Parton,
Jackson, III., 92; Adams, Memoirs, VII., 154.]

Another illustration of his tenacity in this matter, even in
opposition to the wishes of Henry Clay, was his refusal to remove a
naval officer at New Orleans who had made preparations for a public
demonstration to insult a member of Congress who had assisted in
electing Adams. Clay believed that the administration "should avoid,
on the one hand, political persecution, and, on the other, an
appearance of pusillanimity." But the president refused to remove a
man for an intention not carried into effect, and particularly
because he could frame no general policy applicable to this case
which would not result in a clean sweep. Four-fifths of the custom
officers throughout the Union, he thought, were opposed to his
election. To depart in one case from the rule which he had laid down
against removals would be to expose himself to demands from all
parts of the country. [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 546.]

The president who rejected these favorite instruments of political
success was unable to find compensation in personal popularity or
the graces of manner. Cold and repellent, he leaned backward in his
desire to do the right, and alienated men by his testy and
uncompromising reception of advances. And yet there never was a
president more in need of conciliating, for already the forces of
the opposition were forming. Even before his election he had been
warned that the price of his victory would be an organized
opposition to the measures of the administration, [Footnote: Ibid.,
476, 481, 495, 506, 510.] and that Calhoun and his friends in South
Carolina and Pennsylvania would be the leaders. [Footnote: Am. Hist.
Assoc., Report 1899, II., 230, 231; Calhoun, Works, III., 51;
Sargent, Public Men and Events, I., 106, 109.]

The union of the opposition forces into a party was perfected
slowly, for between Crawford, Jackson, and Calhoun there had been
sharp rivalry. Virginia by no means relished the idea of the
promotion of the military hero; and in New York Jackson had been
sustained by Clinton in 1824 against Crawford, the candidate of Van
Buren. The Senate ratification of the nomination of Clay (March 7,
1825) foreshadowed the alliance of southern interests with those of
Pennsylvania; [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI., 525, VII., 69.] but
only fourteen votes, including that of Jackson, were mustered
against him, while among the twenty-seven who ratified the
nomination was Van Buren. By the opening of the nineteenth Congress,
in December, 1825, however, the situation might well have convinced
Adams of the need of caution. Taylor, the administration candidate
for speaker, was elected by a majority of only five against his
opponents' combined vote, and, in the Senate, Calhoun appointed
committees unfriendly to the president.

Nevertheless, in his first annual message [Footnote: Richardson,
Messages and Papers, II., 299.] Adams challenged his critics by
avowing the boldest doctrines of loose construction. The tide of
sentiment in favor of internal improvements was so strong [Footnote:
Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 348.] that, to insure its
complete success, it would have been necessary only for the
executive to cease to interpose the checks which Monroe had placed
upon this movement. Prudence would have dictated to a president
anxious to enlarge his following the avoidance of irritating
utterances upon this point. But Adams characteristically threw away
his opportunity, choosing rather to make extreme proposals which he
realized had slight chance of success, and to state broad principles
of national power.

In this respect he went even further than Clay approved. [Footnote:
Adams, Memoirs, VII., 59, 61-63.] Defining the object of civil
government as the improvement of the condition of those over whom it
is established, not only did he urge the construction of roads and
canals, but, in his enlarged view of internal improvements, he
included the establishment of a national university, the support of
observatories, "light-houses of the skies," and the exploration of
the interior of the United States and of the northwest coast.
Appealing to the example of European nations, as well as of various
states of the Union, he urged Congress to pass laws for the
promotion of agriculture, commerce, and manufactures, the
"encouragement of the mechanic and of the elegant arts, the
advancement of literature, and the progress of the sciences,
ornamental and profound." "Were we," he asked, "to slumber in
indolence or fold up our arms and proclaim to the world that we are
palsied by the will of our constituents, would it not be to cast
away the bounties of Providence and doom ourselves to perpetual
inferiority?" Such a profession of faith as this sounded strangely
in the ears of Americans, respectful of their constituents and
accustomed to regard government as a necessary evil. At a stroke,
Adams had destroyed his fair prospects of winning the support of
Virginia, and, what is more, he had aroused the fears of the whole
slave-holding section.

At the beginning of 1824 the legislature of Ohio passed a resolution
in favor of the emancipation and colonization of the adult children
of slaves, and was supported by the legislatures of at least six
northern states, including Pennsylvania, while the proposal was
attacked by all the states of the lower south. [Footnote: Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. II (with citations);
McMaster, United States, V., 204.] This followed soon after the
excitement aroused by an attempted Negro insurrection in Charleston,
[Footnote: McMaster, United States, V., 199; Atlantic Monthly, VII.,
728.] in 1822, and from the fears aroused by this plot the south had
not yet recovered. Already Governor Wilson, of South Carolina, was
sounding the alarm in a message [Footnote: December 1, 1824. Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 13; Niles' Register,
XXVII., 263, 292.] denouncing the Ohio proposition, and declaring
that there would be more "glory in forming a rampart with our bodies
on the confines of our territory than to be the victims of a
successful rebellion or the slaves of a great consolidated
government." Governor Troup, of Georgia, stirred by the same
proposition, and especially by a resolution which Senator King, of
New York, submitted (February 18, 1825) for the use of the funds
arising from the public lands to aid in emancipating and removing
the slaves, warned his constituents that very soon "the United
States government, discarding the mask, will openly lend itself to a
combination of fanatics for the destruction of everything valuable
in the southern country"; and he entreated the legislature, "having
exhausted the argument, to stand by its arms." [Footnote: Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 17; House Exec. Docs.,
19 Cong., 2 Sess., IV., No. 59, pp. 69, 70.] While Georgia was in
this frame of mind, the administration, as we shall see, [Footnote:
Chap, xviii., below.] completed the breach by refusing to permit the
survey of the Indian lands by the state, and thus forced the
followers of Crawford in Georgia to unite with their former
opponents in South Carolina.

Even in North Carolina, where there had been a considerable
sentiment in favor of Adams, [Footnote: Univ. of North Carolina,
James Sprunt Hist. Monographs, No. 2, pp. 79, 88, 106.] the
conviction grew strong that, under such a loose construction of the
Constitution as that which his message advocated, the abolition of
slavery might be effected. The venerable Senator Macon, to whom
Adams had at one time looked as a possible candidate for the vice-
presidency, believed that the spirit of emancipation was stronger
than that for internal improvements; and that the president's loose-
construction doctrine would render it possible for Congress to free
every slave. [Footnote: Ibid., 76, 106, 107.] One of the senators of
South Carolina, desirous of supporting the administration in
opposition to the Calhoun faction, begged Adams to include in his
message some passage reassuring the south in the matter of slavery,
but he received a chilling reply. [Footnote:  Adams, Memoirs, VII.,
57.] The speaker, Taylor, already obnoxious because of his previous
championship of the proposed exclusion of slavery from Missouri,
aroused the wrath of the south by presenting to the House a memorial
from a "crazy Frenchman," who invited Congress to destroy all the
states which should refuse to free their slaves. [Footnote: Ibid.,
103.] In short, there was a wide-spread though absolutely unfounded
fear that the administration favored emancipation, and that the
doctrines avowed in the message of the president gave full
constitutional pretext for such action.

On the other hand, the opposition was in no agreement on principles.
[Footnote: Univ. of North Carolina, James Sprunt Hist. Monographs,
No. 2, p. 79.] It was dangerous for the south to marshal its forces
on an issue which might alienate the support of Pennsylvania. Much
more safely could the enemies of the president press the charge that
the favorite of the people had been deprived of his rights by a
corrupt political intrigue. Consequently, a flood of proposed
amendments to the Constitution poured upon both branches of Congress
day after day, demanding the abolition of the choice of president by
the House of Representatives and the exclusion of members of
Congress from appointment to executive office during their term of
service. [Footnote: Ames, Amendments to the Const., in Am. Hist.
Assoc., Report 1896, II., 21, 106, 339, 343.]

These measures were championed by McDuffie, Benton, and other
friends of Calhoun and Jackson. Although they were undoubtedly
called out in part by a sincere desire to effect a change in a
system which was regarded as dangerous, they also served admirably
the purpose of popular agitation. In pursuance of the same policy, a
report proposing restrictions upon the executive patronage was made
in the Senate (1826) by a committee which included Benton and Van
Buren. This was accompanied by six bills, transferring a large share
of the patronage from the president to the congressmen, and
proposing the repeal of the four-year tenure of office act.
[Footnote: Fish, Civil Service, 73; McMaster, United States, V.,
432.] Six thousand copies of this report were printed for
distribution, and the Puritan president, so scrupulous in the matter
of the civil service that he disgusted his own followers, found
himself bitterly attacked throughout the country as a corrupt
manipulator of patronage.

The first fully organized opposition, however, was effected in the
debates over Adams's proposal to send delegates to the Panama
Congress, for here was a topic that permitted combined attack under
many flags. In the spring of 1825 the ministers of Mexico and
Colombia sounded Clay to ascertain whether the United States would
welcome an invitation to a congress [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, VI.,
531, 536, 542; International Am. Conference, Reports, etc., IV.,
"The Congress of 1826 at Panama," 23.] initiated by Bolivar, with
the design of consolidating the Spanish-American policy, though at
first the United States had not been included among the states
invited. [Footnote: International Am. Conference, Reports, etc.,
IV., "The Congress of 1826 at Panama," 155.] Clay was predisposed to
accept the overture, for he saw in the congress an opportunity to
complete the American system, which he had long advocated and which
appealed strongly to his idealistic view of the destiny of the new
republics. [Footnote: See chap, xi., above.] But Adams was skeptical
of the future of these new nations, and, as for an American system,
he had once (1820) declared that we had one already, "we constituted
the whole of it; there is no community of interests or of principles
between North and South America." [Footnote: Adams, Memoirs, V.,
176; cf. Am. Hist. Rev., XII., 113.]

Adams had learned something from Clay in the mean time, however, and
his own share in announcing the Monroe Doctrine inclined him to
favor the idea of such a congress, under careful restrictions, to
safeguard our neutrality and independence. So the inquiries were met
in a friendly spirit, and formal invitations were received from
Mexico, Colombia, and Central America in the fall of 1825, defining
more clearly the purposes of the congress and the mode of procedure.
[Footnote: International Am. Conference, Report, IV., 24-34.] The
explanations still left much to be desired, and it may be doubted
whether the president would have accepted the invitation had not
Clay's zeal influenced his decision.

As its proceedings finally showed, the real purpose of the congress
was to form a close union of the new republics against Spain or
other nations which might attack them or make colonial settlements
in violation of their territory, and to determine the troops and
funds to be contributed by each state for this end. Its general
assembly was to meet every two years, and, during the war, its
members were to be bound by the action of the majority. [Footnote:
International Am. Conference, Report, IV., 169 (Bolivar's
instructions); 184 (Treaty of Confederation framed by the Panama
Congress).] Such an organization was manifestly dangerous to the
predominance of the United States, and participation in it was
incompatible with our neutrality and independence. Having reason to
apprehend that the congress might go to this extent, the president,
in determining to accept the invitation, also determined so to limit
our representatives that they should have no power to commit either
our neutrality or our independent action, unless their action were
ratified by the government.

Nevertheless, the prospect of an American system from which the
United States was excluded was not a pleasing one, and certain
topics which were suggested for consideration made the situation
really critical. The presence of a large French fleet off the coast
of Cuba, in the summer of 1825, revived the apprehension of an
invasion of that island, and both Colombia and Mexico contemplated
an attack upon this remaining stronghold of Spain. The annexation of
Cuba and Puerto Rico by any of the South American republics would
unquestionably have meant the emancipation of the slaves, and
already the spectacle of the black republic of Haiti had brought
uneasiness to the south. In this juncture the administration
endeavored to persuade the South American republics to suspend their
expedition, and made overtures for Russian influence to induce Spain
to recognize the revolted republics and thus avoid the danger of
loss of her remaining possessions.

Adams sent a special message to the Senate (December 26, 1825),
nominating two delegates to the Panama Congress. He attempted to
disarm the gathering opposition by declaring that, although the
commissioning of these delegates was regarded as within the rights
of the executive, he desired the advice and consent of the Senate
and the House of Representatives to the proposed mission. Among the
topics named by Adams as suitable for discussion at the congress
were the principles of maritime neutrality, and "an agreement
between all of the parties represented at the meeting that each will
guard by its own means against the establishment of any future
European colony within its borders." This was a striking
qualification of a portion of the Monroe Doctrine, and it indicates
the anxiety of the executive not to commit the United States to any
permanent defensive alliance of the American republics. Seeing their
opportunity, however, the opposition brought in a report strongly
antagonizing the recommendation of this congress, on the ground that
it involved a departure from our time-honored policy of avoiding
entangling alliances, that the congress would really constitute a
government, and that the topics of discussion might better be
handled by negotiation with the respective states. The opposition
considered rather the purposes of the congress as contemplated by
the South American promoters than the propositions which the United
States was willing to discuss in the purely consultative body which
Adams and Clay had in mind.

The knowledge, ignored in the executive message, that the congress
proposed to deal with the problem of the slave-trade and of the
destiny of Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Haiti, kindled southern
indignation at the idea of submitting the subject of slavery to the
discussion of an international tribunal. In a notable speech, Hayne
declared this an entirely "domestic question." "With respect to
foreign Nations," said he, "the language of the United States ought
to be, that it concerns the peace of our own political family, and
therefore we cannot permit it to be touched; and in respect to the
slave-holding States, the only safe and constitutional ground on
which they can stand, is, that they will not permit it to be brought
into question either by their sister States, or by the Federal
Government." [Footnote: Register of Debates, 19 Cong., 1 Sess., II.,
pt. i., 165.] "The peace of eleven States in this Union," said
Benton, "will not permit the fruits of a successful Negro
insurrection to be exhibited among them." [Footnote: Register of
Debates, 19 Cong., 1 Sess., II., pt. i., 330.]

This southern resentment against the submission of the question of
our connection with slavery and with the insurrectionary Negro
republics to the discussion of a foreign tribunal, was combined with
the opposition of northern men like Van Buren to engaging the United
States in a system for the control of American affairs by a
congress. Thus the enemies of the administration were brought into
unison. Nevertheless, the Senate assented to the mission (March 14,
1826) by a vote of 24 to 19; and, after an animated debate, the
House, by a vote of 134 to 60, made the necessary appropriations. It
was a barren victory, however, for one of the delegates died while
on his way, and the other reached Panama after the Congress had
adjourned. Although a subsequent session was to have been held at
Tacubaya, near the city of Mexico, dissensions among the Spanish-
American states prevented its meeting. [Footnote: Richardson,
Messages and Papers, II., 329; International Am. Conference, Report,
IV., 81, 113, 173-201.]




What Adams had nearest at heart in his administration was the
construction of a great system of roads and canals, irrespective of
local interests, for the nation as a whole. [Footnote: Wheeler,
Hist. of Cong., II., 154; Adams, Memoirs, VII., 59, VIII., 444; cf.
chap, xiii., above.] To "exalt the valleys and lay low the mountains
and the hills" appealed to his imagination. He hoped that the
increased price of the public lands, arising from the improved means
of communication, would in turn furnish a large and steadily
increasing fund for national turnpikes and canals. But the American
people were not anxious for a system of scientific administration,
either of the public domain or of internal improvements. Although
Benton could not secure sufficient support to carry his measure for
graduating the price of the public lands and donating those which
found no purchasers at fifty cents an acre, [Footnote: Meigs,
Benton, 165-172.] he voiced, nevertheless, a very general antagonism
to the management of the domain by the methods of the counting-
house. Nor was the president able to control legislation on internal
improvements. The report of the engineers appointed under the
general survey act of 1824 provided for the development of the
routes of national importance. [Footnote: State Papers, 18 Cong., 2
Sess., V., Doc. 83 (February 14, 1825); cf. ibid., 19 Cong., 2
Sess., II., Ex. Doc. No. 10 (December 7, 1826).] But local interests
and the pressure of corporations eager to receive federal
subscriptions to their stock quickly broke down the unity of the

The Senate declined to take action on a resolution introduced
December 20, 1825, by Senator Van Buren, of New York, which denied
Congress the power to make roads and canals within the respective
states, and proposed a constitutional amendment for the grant of the
power under limitations. [Footnote: Register of Debates, 19 Cong., 1
Sess., II., pt. i., 20; Ames, Amendments of the Fed. Const. (Am.
Hist. Assoc., Report 1896), 71, 261.] Provision had been made in
1825 for extending the Cumberland Road from Wheeling to Zanesville,
Ohio, and for surveys through the other states of the northwest to
Missouri, and appropriations were annually made for the road, until
by 1833 it was completed as far as Columbus, Ohio. Nevertheless,
that highway was rapidly going to destruction, and a counter
project, ultimately successful, was already initiated for
relinquishing the road to the states through which it passed.
[Footnote: Young, Cumberland Road, chap. vii.; Hulbert, Historic
Highways, X.]

Over two and a third million dollars was appropriated for roads and
harbors during the administration of John Quincy Adams, as against
about one million during the administrations of all of his
predecessors combined. Acting on the line of least constitutional
resistance opened by Monroe, when he admitted the right of
appropriation for internal improvements, though not the right of
construction or jurisdiction, extensive appropriations were made for
roads and canals and for harbors on the Great Lakes and the
Atlantic. Far from accepting Adams's ideal of a scientific general
system irrespective of local or party interests, districts combined
with one another for local favors, corporations eagerly sought
subscriptions for their canal stock, and the rival political parties
bid against each other for the support of states which asked federal
aid for their roads and canals.

By the middle of this administration the popularity of internal
improvement appropriations seemed irresistible, although southern
states raised their voices against it and complained bitterly that
they were neglected. The example of the Erie Canal, which was open
by 1825, seemed to furnish proof of the success that awaited state
canal construction. States were learning that English capital was
ready for investment in such undertakings and that Congress could
donate lands and subscribe for stock.

By acts of 1825 and 1826, Pennsylvania initiated its extensive state
system of roads and canals to reach the Ohio, the central part of
New York, and the Great Lakes. [Footnote: Hulbert, Historic
Highways, XIII., chap, iv.; Worthington, Finances of Pennsylvania,
22.] The trunk line of this system united Philadelphia with
Pittsburgh by a horse railway to Columbia on the Susquehanna, thence
by a canal along that river and its tributary, the Juniata, to
Hollidaysburg, where stationary engines carried the freight over a
series of inclined planes across the thirty-six miles of mountains,
to reach the western section of the canal at Johnstown on the
Conemaugh, and so by the Allegheny to Pittsburgh. Sectional
jealousies delayed the work, and piled up a debt incurred partly for
branch canals in various parts of the state; but by 1830 over four
hundred miles of canal had been built in Pennsylvania and five
hundred more projected. Not until 1835 was the trunk line between
Philadelphia and Pittsburgh fully in operation, however, and in the
decade after 1822 the total expenditure for internal improvements in
the state amounted to nearly twenty-six million dollars, of which
over ten millions was contributed by individual subscription. But
the steam railroad proved too strong a competitor, the state was
plunged too deeply in debt, and it was not many years before the
public works were sold, and the era of the corporation opened.

Meanwhile the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal project [Footnote: Hulbert,
Historic Highways, XIII., chap, iii.; Ward, Chesapeake and Ohio
Canal (Johns Hopkins Univ. Studies, XVII.)] had gained great impetus
under the efforts of those who wished to turn the tide of western
commerce to the Potomac River. The innate difficulties of the task,
even more than the opposition of Baltimore, rendered abortive the
efforts of the Potomac Company to make the river navigable above
tide-water. But in 1823 public interest in Virginia and Maryland was
aroused by the plan of a great canal to run alongside of the Potomac
to its upper streams, and thence to connect with the Monongahela or
Youghiogheny in order to reach the Ohio. At a convention which met
in Washington in the fall of 1823, Maryland, Virginia, and the
District of Columbia were largely represented by delegates
enthusiastic over this new highway to the west. Even Baltimore
acquiesced in the undertaking after a provision giving the right to
tap the canal by a branch to that city, so that her western trade
should not be diverted to the Potomac cities.

By 1826 the company was duly chartered by Virginia and Maryland;
Pennsylvania's consent was also obtained; and the financiering of
the enterprise seemed feasible by joint subscription to the stock by
Maryland, Virginia, the District of Columbia, and the federal
government. Under the general survey act of 1824, the route was
surveyed, including an extension to Lake Erie by way of a canal from
the Ohio. But when, in 1826, the board of engineers published its
estimate of the cost of the canal, it was seen that the larger plans
were doomed, for the total cost was placed at over twenty-two
million dollars. This was practically prohibitive, for the whole
capital stock of the Chesapeake and Ohio Company was only six
millions. Congress made a million-dollar subscription to the stock
of the company, but only the eastern section of the canal could be
begun; the completion of navigation between the coal-fields on the
upper Ohio and Cumberland on the Potomac must be postponed.

Baltimore's interest in the grand design of canal communication
between that city and Pittsburgh quickly disappeared. Nearer to the
Ohio Valley than any other seaport, she had built turnpikes to
connect with the national road, and thus shared with Philadelphia
the western trade. But now New York and Pennsylvania were
undertaking canal systems which were certain in the long run to
destroy the advantages of Baltimore. In desperation, her far-sighted
and courageous merchants inaugurated the plan of a railroad across
the mountains to the Ohio, grasping the idea that as the canal had
shown its superiority over the turnpike, so this new device would
win the day over the canal. In 1827 and 1828 charters for the
Baltimore and Ohio Railroad were granted by Maryland, Virginia, and

At Washington, on July 4, 1828, President Adams stripped off his
coat, amid the cheers of the crowd, and thrust the spade into the
ground in signal of the beginning of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal;
but on the same day a rival celebration was in progress at
Baltimore, where the venerable signer of the Declaration of
Independence, Charles Carroll of Carrollton, placed the foundation-
stone to commemorate the commencement of the Baltimore and Ohio
Railroad, first of the iron bonds between the east and the west.
When Adams thus won the plaudits of the people for his evidence of
ability to break the conventions of polite society and use a
laborer's tool, it was perhaps the only time that he and democracy
came into sympathetic touch. But he was aiding in a losing cause,
for, though Carroll was a man of the past, destiny was working on
the side of the movement which he represented. In the field of
transportation, the initiative of individuals and of corporations
during the next two generations proved superior to that of state or

In the mean time, Ohio, eager to take advantage of the competition
of these rival routes from New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and
Washington, and wishing to develop the central region of the state,
undertook in 1825 a state system of canals connecting the Ohio with
Lake Erie. [Footnote: Morris, Internal Improvement in Ohio (Am.
Hist. Assoc., Papers, III.), 107; see also McClelland and
Huntington, Ohio Canals.] The Ohio Canal began at Portsmouth and
followed the valleys of the Scioto and the Cuyahoga to Cleveland,
while another canal extended from Cincinnati along the Miami to
Dayton. By branches connecting with the Pennsylvania system, this
net-work of water-ways was intended to give alternative outlets for
the rapidly growing surplus of the state. Wheat which sold for from
twenty-five to thirty-seven cents per bushel in central Ohio in 1825
brought double the amount in 1832 when the canal began to be
effective; and it sold for a higher price a hundred miles west of
Pittsburgh than it did sixty miles to the east of that city, where
water transportation was lacking. [Footnote: Quar. Jour. of Econ.,
XVII., 15; Dial, in Ohio Archaeological and Hist. Soc.,
Publications, XIII., 479.] An example of the rivalry of the
followers of Adams and of Jackson in conciliating western interests
is furnished in the case of Ohio, just prior to the campaign of
1828, when each party in Congress persisted in supporting its own
bill donating lands for the canals of that state. Owing to the fear
of each that the other party would gain the credit of the measure,
both bills were passed, and Ohio received double the amount
originally asked. [Footnote: Benton, Abridgment, X., 197 n.] It was
small wonder that Indiana, Illinois, and other western states
memorialized Congress for aid in their own plans for canals.

The activity of the states, no longer waiting for the federal
government to construct a national system; the rapidly growing
demand for the relinquishment of the national road to the states
within which it lay; and the activity of corporations, all pointed
to a new era in internal improvements. The states were ready to
receive appropriations, but they preferred to build their own roads
and dig their own canals. The state and the corporation were
replacing the national government as the controlling power in
internal improvements, and Adams's conception of a national system
of turnpikes and canals had failed.

Nor was President Adams successful in carrying out a system of
complete maritime reciprocity. After the War of 1812, Great Britain
and the United States agreed upon the abolition of discriminating
duties on ships or products engaged in the trade between the two
countries; [Footnote: Cf. Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation,
XIII.), chap. xvi.] but England reserved her right to exempt her
American possessions from this reciprocity. By excluding the ships
of the United States from the trade with the English West Indies,
England denied a profitable avocation to American ship-owners;
while, at the same time, the liberal arrangements of the United
States permitted her vessels freely to enter the ports of this
country with their cargoes of English manufactures, and to carry
thence to the West Indies lumber, flour, and provisions to exchange
for the molasses and sugar of the islands.

This ability to make a triangular voyage, with profits on each
transaction, gave such advantage to British ships that they were
able to carry on the trade between the United States and England at
a rate below that which American vessels could afford. Driven to
seek some remedy, the Yankee merchants and skippers turned to the
Orient. The trade with China and the East Indies developed rapidly,
and our tonnage registered for foreign trade increased from 583,000
tons in 1820 to 758,000 in 1828. [Footnote: Marvin, American
Merchant Marine, chap. ix.] Ninety per cent. of our foreign commerce
was carried in our own vessels, and, from this point of view,
American shipping enjoyed one of the most prosperous periods in its
history. [Footnote: Pitkin, Statistical View (ed. of 1835), 363;
Soley, "Maritime Industries," in Shaler (ed. of 1894), United
States, I., 538.] Smuggling was extensively carried on in the West
Indies, and a war of retaliatory legislation in regard to shipping
characterized the whole decade.

In 1825 Parliament passed a somewhat obscure act which opened the
ports on a more liberal system of reciprocity. To nations without
colonies she offered the same shipping rights in her colonies which
such nations gave to England and her possessions. The act provided
that it must be accepted within a year by nations who desired to
avail themselves of its provisions. President Adams preferred to
deal with the question by diplomacy, and Congress neglected to pass
the legislation necessary to accept the offer. When Gallatin, who
had been sent to England to treat of this matter, opened his
negotiations in 1826, he was informed that it was too late. The
stipulated time having elapsed, American vessels were definitely
excluded from the West Indies in 1826 by orders in council.
[Footnote: Adams, Gallatin, 615-620; cf. MacDonald, Jacksonian
Democracy (Am. Nation, XV.), 201.] In the campaign of 1828 Adams was
blamed for the failure to seize this opportunity, but the generally
prosperous condition of our shipping not only moderated the
discontent, but even led to a law (May 24, 1828) intended to place
American vessels in complete control of our foreign commerce by
providing for the abolition, by proclamation of the president, of
all discriminating duties against such nations as should free ships
of the United States from corresponding discriminations. In the long
run, this reciprocity act proved a mistake; the end of Adams's
administration marked the beginning of a decline in the prosperity
of the merchant marine. [Footnote: Soley, in Shaler, United States,
I., 540.]

American commerce during this period by no means kept pace with the
growing wealth and population of the country. [Footnote 2: Sterns,
Foreign Trade of the United States, 1820-1840, in Jour. Pol. Econ.,
VIII., 34, 452.] As we have seen, the staple states produced the
lion's share of the domestic exports, and the internal exchange
favored by the protective tariffs restrained the foreign
importations. Aside from the depression in 1821, following the panic
of 1819, and the extraordinary rise in 1825, the exports in general
exhibited no marked increase or decline between 1820 and 1829.
Imports showed a value of nearly seventy-four and one-half million
dollars in 1820, ninety millions in 1825, and sixty-seven millions
in 1829. [Footnote 3: Soley, in Shaler, United States, I., 538; cf.
Pitkin, Statistical View (ed. of 1835), 177; W. C. Ford, in Depew,
One Hundred Years of Am. Commerce, I., 23.] During the whole of
Adams's administration, New York preserved its easy lead in domestic
exports, although, as the west leaped up to power, New Orleans rose
rapidly to a close second in exports of domestic origin. The
southern cities retained merely the same proportion of the exports
of domestic origin which they had in 1820, in spite of the great
increase of cotton production. New York and New Orleans gained a
large fraction of this trade, and Massachusetts changed its
proportion of domestic exports only slightly during the whole
decade. Over three-fourths of the cotton went to the British Isles,
while almost all the pork and beef, and two-thirds of the flour,
went to the West Indies, South America, and Great Britain's American
colonies. [Footnote: Pitkin, Statistical View, 121-137.]

The statistics of commerce repeat the same story of increasing
national self-dependence which was told by the development of
manufactures, internal trade, and transportation, and even by the
diplomatic policy of the United States. The nation was building an
empire of its own, with sections which took the place of kingdoms.
The west was already becoming the granary of the whole country. But
in the development of this "American system," the navigating
portions of New England and the staple states of the south and
southwest found themselves at a disadvantage. Their interest lay in
a free exchange across the ocean.

Although many minor treaties of commerce and navigation were
negotiated by Clay during this administration, all his other
diplomatic efforts met with failure, among them attempts to purchase
Texas and to procure a treaty with England for the rendition of
fugitive slaves who had escaped to Canada--strange evidences of the
political concessions of the northern president.



From the close of the War of 1812, an increasing reaction was in
progress in various states against the ardent nationalism which
characterized the country at that time. The assertion of the
doctrine of state sovereignty by the Hartford Convention in 1814
[Footnote: Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xv.]
so aroused the other sections of the country that particularism was
for the time discredited. Leaders of Virginia politics even approved
a rumor that Madison would march troops against New England; Judge
Roane, later a champion of Virginia's sovereignty, denounced the
"anarchical principles" of the section. [Footnote: Randolph-Macon
College, John P. Branch Hist. Papers, II., 18.] In that period, when
Calhoun and the other leading statesmen of South Carolina supported
the protective tariff and the bonus bill, when Madison, the author
of the Virginia resolutions of 1798, signed the bill for the
recharter of the national bank, when Chief-Justice Marshall, a son
of Virginia, was welding firm the bonds of nationalism in his great
series of decisions limiting the powers of the states and developing
the doctrine of loose construction of the Constitution, [Footnote:
Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chap. xviii.] and when
New England itself was explaining away the particularistic purposes
of the Hartford Convention, it might well seem that the days of
state sovereignty had come to an end.

Even then, however, the pendulum was starting to swing in the
opposite direction. The crisis of 1819 and the decisions of the
supreme court asserting the constitutionality of the national bank
under the broad national conception of the Constitution, produced
protests and even resistance from various states whose interests
were most affected. Ohio in 1819 forcibly collected a tax on the
branch bank of the United States, in defiance of Marshall's decision
rendered earlier in the year in the case of McCulloch vs. Maryland;
and in 1821 her legislature reaffirmed the doctrines of the Virginia
and Kentucky resolutions, and passed an act withdrawing the
protection of the laws of the state from the national bank,
[Footnote 2: Ames, State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 3, p. 5.]
and even persisted in her resistance after the decision (Osborn vs.
Bank of U. S., 1824) against the state. But the proceeds of the tax
were ultimately restored. Nor was Ohio alone in her opposition to
this decision. Kentucky was almost equally excited, and Senator R.
M. Johnson made a vain attempt in 1821 to procure an amendment to
the Constitution providing that in controversies in which a state
was a party the Senate of the United States should have appellate
jurisdiction. [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 17 Cong., I Sess., I., 23,
68, 96; Ames, State Docs., No. 3, p. 17; Ames, Amendments to the
Const., in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1896, II., 161; Niles' Register,
XVII., 289, 311, 447.] Judge Roane, chief-justice of Virginia, in a
series of papers in the Richmond Enquirer, challenging the
nationalistic reasoning of the court, asserted that the Constitution
resulted from a compact between the states, [Footnote 2: Randolph-
Macon College, John P. Branch Hist. Papers, II., 106-121.] and in
this attack he was heartily supported by Jefferson. [Footnote 3:
Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 140, 189, 229.] Justice
Marshall, in Cohens vs. Virginia [Footnote 4: 6 Wheaton, 264.]
(1821), decided that the supreme court had appellate jurisdiction in
a case decided by the state court where the Constitution and the
laws of the United States were involved, even though a state was a

Virginia's attorneys maintained, on the contrary, that the final
construction of the Constitution might be given by the courts of
every state in the Union; and Judge Roane, whose own decision had
been overturned, again appealed to his fellow-citizens in a strong
series of articles. Again Jefferson denounced the consolidating
tendencies of the judiciary, "which, working like gravity without
any intermission, is to press us at last into one consolidated
mass." Virginia entered her solemn protest against the decision, and
her House of Delegates reaffirmed the argument of Virginia's
counsel, and asserted that neither the government of the state nor
of the United States could press the other from its sphere. In
effect, Virginia's position would have given the state a veto on the
will of the federal government, by the protection which her courts
could have extended to the individual subject to her jurisdiction
under the interpretation placed by the state upon the Constitution.
[Footnote: Randolph-Macon College, John P. Branch Hist. Papers, II.,
28; Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), IX., 184; cf. ibid., X.
passim; Madison, Writings, III., 217-224; Ames, State Docs. on
Federal Relations, No. 3. p. 15; Niles' Register, XX., 118; 6
Wheaton 385.] The leading expositor of Virginia reaction in this
period was John Taylor of Caroline, the mover of the resolutions of
1798. His "Construction Construed", published in 1820, was
introduced by a preface in which the editor said: "The period is
indeed by no means an agreeable one. It borrows new gloom from the
apathy which seems to run over so many of our sister states. The
very sound of State Rights is scarcely ever heard among them; and by
many of their eminent politicians is only heard to be mocked at."
Taylor himself was led to write the book by the agitation over the
Missouri question and the case of McCulloch vs. Maryland. One of its
purposes was to insist that sovereignty was not divided between the
separate spheres of the state and federal government, but rested
rather in the people of the several states. Two years later, in his
"Tyranny Unmasked", Taylor developed the idea that the division of
the power of the people between the federal and state governments
would be nugatory if either Congress or the supreme court could
exclusively determine the boundaries of power between the states and
the general government. His remedy for usurpation was the "state
veto," which was to be "no mere didactic lecture," but involved the
right of resisting unconstitutional laws. He met the difficulty that
the people of one state would construe the Constitution for the
people of all the states, by the answer that it was the lesser evil.
[Footnote: Taylor, Tyranny Unmasked, 258, 262.] Again in 1823, in
his "New Views of the Constitution", he expounded the same ideas,
and dwelt upon the position of the states as the defenders of
separate geographical interests against oppression by the majority
of the nation. He saw a grave danger in the relinquishment to
Congress of the power to deal with local and dissimilar geographical
interests by loose-construction legislation upon such subjects as
banks, roads, canals, and manufactures. It would tend to produce
geographical combinations; sections by combining would exploit and
oppress the minority; "Congress would become an assembly of
geographical envoys from the North, the South, and the West."
Against these evils, the Constitution, according to his view, had
provided by confining geographical interests within state lines
instead of "collecting them into one intriguing arena." The states,
reposing on their sovereignty, would interpose a check to oppressive
action and to the combination of sectional interests against the
minority. [Footnote 1: Taylor, New Views (ed. of 1823), 261 et seq.]

Not a theory of government, however, but a political exigency called
out a working principle of state rights. When the industrial policy
of the government fell under the complete control of the north, and
the social system of the south seemed to be menaced, state
sovereignty controlled the southern policy. The increase in
popularity of Clay's American system of internal improvements and a
protective tariff aroused the apprehensions of the whole planting
section; the struggle over the admission of Missouri taught the
south the power of an unfriendly national majority; and, in 1822, a
threatened insurrection of the Negroes at Charleston brought home to
the whole section, and particularly to South Carolina, the dangers
arising from an agitation of the question of slavery. [Footnote 2:
Cf. Hart, Slavery and Abolition (Am. Nation, XVI.), chap. viii.] In
the irritated condition and depression of this section, the triumph
of loose construction principles and the possible election of a
northern president seemed to presage not only the sacrifice of their
economic interests, but even the freeing of their slaves. [Footnote
3: See the resolutions of Virginia, December 23, 1816, in Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 3.] The colonization
society, which in its origin had been supported by southern men,
became an object of denunciation by the lower south after the
Missouri controversy and the insurrection of 1822. The opposition
was intensified by the disposition of the society, towards the close
of the period, to advocate emancipation, as well as the removal of
the existing free Negroes. [Footnote: Cf. Hart, Slavery and
Abolition (Am. Nation, XVI.), chap. xiv.]

In Virginia the doctrine of state rights was supported by the
friends of Crawford, and, in general, by the older portion of the
state. In her western counties, however, where a movement was in
progress for a constitutional convention to redistribute political
power so that the populous interior should not be subordinated to
the slave-holding minority of the coast, there was a strong
sentiment in favor of the constitutionality and expediency both of
federal internal improvements and the tariff. Nevertheless,
Virginia's voice was determined by the ascendancy of the old-time
plantation interests. In 1825, Jefferson suggested that the
legislature of Virginia should pass a set of resolutions, declaring
the internal-improvement laws null and void. He advised, however,
that, at the same time, the issue should be avoided by an act of the
Virginia legislature validating these congressional laws [Footnote
2: Jefferson, Writings (Ford's ed.), X., 348-352; Ames, State Docs.
on Federal Relations, No. 4, p. 8.] until action could be taken on a
carefully guarded proposal to amend the Constitution so as to grant
the right. This was the last effort of Jefferson to stay the tide of
internal improvements which was sweeping opposition before it, and
even he withdrew his project before it was acted on. His death (July
4, 1826) removed from Virginia the most influential advocate of
state sovereignty and the greatest of the Virginia dynasty since
Washington. On the same day John Adams died. The men who made the
declaration of independence were passing away, but the spirit of
that epoch was reviving in the south.

South Carolina was the theatre of a conflict between the old-time
forces of nationalism, of which Calhoun had been the most prominent
exponent, and the newer tendencies which would safeguard the
interests of the commonwealth by appealing to the doctrine of state
sovereignty. [Footnote: Houston, Nullification in S. C., chap. iv. ]
At first, the conservative party was in the ascendancy. In 1820 the
House of Representatives of South Carolina passed a resolution which
deprecated the system of protection as premature and pernicious, but
admitted that Congress possessed the power of enacting all laws
relating to commerce, and lamented the practice "of arraying upon
the questions of national policy the states as distinct and
independent sovereignties in opposition to, or (what is much the
same thing), with a view to exercise a control over the general
government"; [Footnote 2: Ames, State Docs. on Federal Relations,
No. 4, p. 3.] and, as late as 1824, the same body passed resolutions
declaring that the man "who disseminates doctrines whose tendency is
to give an unconstitutional preponderance to State, or United
States' rights, must be regarded as inimical to the forms of
government under which we have hitherto so happily lived"; and that
"the People have conferred no power upon their state legislature to
impugn the Acts of the Federal Government or the decisions of the
Supreme Court of the United States." [Footnote: Ames, State Docs. on
Federal Relations, No. 4, p. 6.] The state Senate was already
controlled by the opponents of national power, led by Judge Smith;
and the next year the Lower House also fell under their dominance.

The attitude of McDuffie illustrates the transitional conditions in
South Carolina. In 1821 he published a pamphlet supporting a liberal
construction of the powers of Congress, and refuting the "ultra
doctrines respecting consolidation and state sovereignty." [Footnote
2: Defense of a Liberal Construction, etc., by "One of the People."
Reprinted in Philadelphia, 1831. To this pamphlet, Governor Hamilton
had prefixed "an encomiastic advertisement."] In 1824, also, he
supported the constitutionality and expediency of the general survey
act, and repudiated the idea that the state governments were "in any
respect more worthy of confidence than the General Government."
[Footnote 3: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., I Sess., 1372.] But he
opposed the tariff of 1824, and in 1825 he voted against specific
measures for internal improvement. Soon after this he joined the
ranks of the advocates of state sovereignty, and, together with
Hamilton and Hayne, so far outstripped the leaders of that faction
that Judge Smith and his friends found themselves in a conservative
minority against the ultra doctrines of their former opponents.
Doubtless the reversal of South Carolina's attitude was accelerated
by the slavery agitation which followed the emancipation proposition
of Ohio, already mentioned, and by the contest over the Negro seamen
act, [Footnote: Passed December 21, 1822. See Ames, State Docs. on
Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 12; cf. Hart, Slavery and Abolition
(Am. Nation, XVI.), chap. xix.] a measure by which South Carolina,
in consequence of the plot at Charleston, required that free Negroes
on vessels entering a port of South Carolina should be imprisoned
during the sojourn of the ship. The act brought out protests, both
from other states and from Great Britain, whose subjects were
imprisoned; and it was declared unconstitutional by Adams's
attorney-general and by the federal courts nevertheless, it remained
unrepealed and continued to be enforced. [Footnote 2: McMaster,
United States, V., 200-204, 417.] The Senate of South Carolina met
the situation, at the close of 1824, by resolutions affirming that
the duty of preventing insurrections was "paramount to all laws, all
treaties, all constitutions," and protesting against any claims of
right of the United States to interfere with her domestic
regulations in respect to the colored population. [Footnote 3: Ames,
State Docs. on Federal Relations, No. 5, p. 14.]

Georgia, a few years later (December, 1827), in opposition to the
Colonization Society, [Footnote 4: Ibid., 17, 19.] vehemently
asserted her rights, and found the remedy no longer in remonstrance,
but in "a firm and determined union of the people and the states of
the south" against submission to interference. Already Georgia had
placed herself in the attitude of resistance to the general
government over the question of the Indians within the state. From
the beginning of the nation, the Indians on the borders of the
settled area of Georgia were a menace and an obstacle to her
development. Indeed, they constituted a danger to the United States
as well: their pretensions to independence and complete sovereignty
over their territory were at various times utilized by adventurers
from France, England, and Spain as a means of promoting the designs
of these powers. [Footnote: Am. Hist. Rev., X., 249.] Jackson drove
a wedge between the Indian confederacies of this region by his
victories in the War of 1812 and the cessions which followed.
[Footnote: Babcock, Am. Nationality (Am. Nation, XIII.), chaps, ii.,
xvii.] Although, in 1821, a large belt of territory between the
Ocmulgee and Flint rivers was ceded by the Creeks to Georgia, the
state saw with impatience some of the best lands still occupied by
these Indians in the territory lying between the Flint and the

The spectacle of a stream of Georgia settlers crossing this rich
Indian area of their own state to settle in the lands newly acquired
in Alabama and Mississippi provoked Georgia's wrath, and numerous
urgent calls were made upon the government to carry out the
agreement made in 1802, [Footnote: Phillips, "Georgia and State
Rights," in Am. Hist. Assoc., Report 1901, II., 34.] by completing
the acquisition of these Indian lands. Responding to this demand, a
treaty was made at Indian Springs in February, 1825, by which the
Creeks ceded all of their lands in Georgia; but when Adams came to
the presidency he was confronted with a serious situation arising
from this treaty. Shortly after it had been ratified, Mclntosh, a
principal chief of the Lower Creeks, who had signed the treaty,
contrary to the rule of the tribe and in spite of the decision to
sell no more land, was put to death; and the whole treaty was
repudiated by the great body of the Creeks, as having been procured
by fraud and made by a small minority of their nation. The
difficulty arose from the fact that the various villages of these
Indians were divided into opposing parties: the Upper Creeks, living
chiefly along the forks of the Alabama, on the Tallapoosa and the
Coosa in Alabama, constituting the more numerous branch, were
determined to yield no more territory, while the principal chiefs of
the Lower Creeks, who dwelt in western Georgia, along the Flint and
Chattahoochee branches of the Appalachicola, were not unfavorable to

When Governor Troup, of Georgia, determined to survey the ceded
lands, he was notified that the president expected Georgia to
abandon the survey until it could be done consistently with the
provisions of the treaty. Although the treaty had given the Creeks
until September, 1826, to vacate, Governor Troup informed General
Gaines, who had been sent to preserve peace, that, as there existed
"two independent parties to the question, each is permitted to
decide for itself," and he announced that the line would be run and
the survey effected. The defiant correspondence which now ensued
between the governor and the war department doubtless reflected the
personal hot-headedness of Troup himself, but Georgia supported her
governor and made his defiances effective. He plainly threatened
civil war in case the United States used force to prevent the
survey. [Footnote: Ames, State Docs on Federal Relations, No. 3, pp.
25-31; Phillips, "Georgia and State Rights," in Am. Hist. Assoc.,
Report 1901, II., 58-60; 40 (map).]

On investigation, President Adams reached the conclusion that the
treaty was wrongfully secured, and gave orders for a new
negotiation. This resulted in the treaty of Washington, in January,
1826, supplemented by that of March, 1826, by which the Creek
Indians ceded all of their lands within the state except a narrow
strip along the western border. This treaty abrogated the treaty of
Indian Springs and it provided that the Indians should remain in
possession of their lands until January 1, 1827. Throughout the
whole of these proceedings Georgia was bitterly incensed. Claiming
that the treaty of Indian Springs became operative after its
ratification, and that the lands acquired by it were thereby
incorporated with Georgia and were under her sovereignty, the state
denied the right of the general government to reopen the question.
"Georgia," said Troup, "is sovereign on her own soil," and he
entered actively upon the survey of the tract without waiting for
the date stipulated in the new treaty. When the surveyors entered
the area not ceded by the later treaty, the Indians threatened to
use force against them, and at the beginning of 1827 another heated
controversy arose. The president warned the governor of Georgia that
he should employ, if necessary, "all the means under his control to
maintain the faith of the nation by carrying the treaty into
effect." Having done this, he submitted the whole matter in a
special message to Congress. [Footnote: February 5, 1827.
Richardson, Messages and Papers, II., 370.]

"From the first decisive act of hostility," wrote Troup to the
secretary of war, "you will be considered and treated as a public
enemy"; and he announced his intention to resist any military attack
on the part of the United States, "the unblushing allies of the
savages." [Footnote: Harden, Troup, 485.] He thereupon made
preparations for liberating any surveyors who might be arrested by
the United States, and for calling out the militia. In the House of
Representatives, a committee recommended the purchase of the Indian
title to all lands in Georgia, and, until such cession were
procured, the maintenance of the treaty of Washington by all
necessary and constitutional means; but the report of the Senate
committee, submitted by Benton, supported the idea that the
ratification of the treaty of Indian Springs vested the title to the
lands in Georgia, and reached the conclusion that no preparations
should be made to coerce the state by military force. In November,
1827, the Creeks consented to a treaty extinguishing the last of
their claims, and the issue was avoided.

In the mean time, the Cherokees in the north-western portion of the
state gave rise to a new problem by adopting a national constitution
(July 26, 1827) and asserting that they constituted one of the
sovereign and independent nations of the earth, with complete
jurisdiction over their own territory to the exclusion of the
authority of any other state. [Footnote: Text in Exec. Docs., 23
Cong., 2 Sess., III., No. 91 (Serial No. 273); Ames, State Docs. on
Federal Relations, No. 3, p. 36; see also House Reports, 19 Cong., 2
Sess. No. 98.] This bold challenge was met by Georgia in the same
spirit which guided her policy in regard to the Creek lands. The
legislature, by an act of December 20, 1828, subjected all white
persons in the Cherokee territory to the laws of Georgia, and
provided that in 1830 the Indians also should be subject to the laws
of the state. Thus Georgia completed her assertion of sovereignty
over her soil both against the United States and the Indians. But
this phase of the controversy was not settled during the presidency
of Adams.



While the slavery agitation was inflaming the minds of South
Carolina and her sister states of the cotton region, and while
Georgia, half a frontier state, was flinging defiance at the general
government when it checked her efforts to complete the possession of
her territory, the reopening of the tariff question brought the
matter of state resistance to a climax.

The tariff of 1824 was unsatisfactory to the woolen interests. In
the course of the decade there had been an astonishing increase of
woolen factories in New England, [Footnote: See chap. ii., above.]
and the strength of the protective movement grew correspondingly in
that section. By a law which took effect at the end of 1824, England
reduced the duty on wool to a penny a pound, and thus had the
advantage of a cheap raw material as well as low wages, so that the
American mills found themselves placed at an increasing
disadvantage. Under the system of ad valorem duties, the English
exporters got their goods through the United States custom-house by
such under valuation as gravely diminished even the protection
afforded by the tariff of 1824; and the unloading of large
quantities of woolen goods by auction sales brought a cry of
distress from New England. This led to an agitation to substitute
specific duties in place of ad valorem, and to apply to woolens the
minimum principle already applied to cottons. At the same time
sheep-raisers were demanding increased protection.

Early in 1827, therefore, Mallory, of Vermont, a state which was
especially interested in wool-growing, brought into the House of
Representatives a report of the committee on manufactures, proposing
a bill which provided three minimum points for woolen goods, with
certain exceptions, those that cost less than 40 cents a square yard
were to be rated as though they cost 40 cents in imposing the
tariff; those which cost between 40 cents and $2.50 were reckoned at
$2.50; and those which cost between $2.50 and $4, at $4. Upon
unmanufactured wool, after 1828, a duty of forty per cent, was
imposed, and all wool costing between 10 and 40 cents a pound was to
be rated at 40 cents. [Footnote: Stanwood, Tariff Controversies, I.,

The political situation exercised a dominant influence upon the
tariff legislation at this time. As the campaign between Adams and
Jackson was approaching its end, the managers of Jackson faced the
problem of how to hold together the forces of the south, which were
almost to a man opposed to tariff legislation, and those of
Pennsylvania and New York, where protection was so popular. Jackson
himself, as we have seen, announced his belief in the home-market
idea, and, although with some reservations, committed himself to the
support of the protective system.

While the forces of Jackson were not harmonious on the tariff,
neither was there consistency of interests between the friends of
protection in New England, the middle states, and the west. If New
England needed an increased tariff to sustain her woolen factories,
Pennsylvania, Ohio, and parts of New York were equally interested in
extending the protection to wool, the raw material of the New
England mills. If the New England shipping interests demanded cheap
cordage, on the other hand, the Kentucky planters were ever ready to
plead for an increased duty upon the hemp which made the ropes. If
iron foundries were developing among the towns of the New England
coast, where ships brought in the raw material from Sweden and from
England, the Pennsylvania forges found an opposite interest in their
desire for an increased duty on pig-iron to protect the domestic

The history of the tariff has always been the history of the
struggle to combine local and opposing interests into a single bill.
Such conditions furnished opportunity for the clever politicians who
guided Jackson's canvass to introduce discordant ideas and jealousy
between the middle states, the west, and New England. The silence of
the New England president upon the question of the tariff, the
"selfishness of New England's policy," and the inducements offered
to the middle region and the west to demand protection for their
special interests were all successfully used to break the unity of
the tariff forces. Even protectionist Pennsylvania, and Kentucky,
home of the champion of the American system, gave a large share of
their votes against the bill. Although it passed the House (February
10, 1827), the Senate laid it on the table by the casting-vote of
Vice-President Calhoun, who was thus compelled to take the
responsibility of defeating the measure, [Footnote: See the account
of Van Buren's tactics at this time, in Stanwood, Tariff
Controversies, I., 258; and Calhoun, Works, III., 47.] and to range
himself permanently with the anti-tariff sentiment of his section.

Hardly had the woolens bill met its fate when the rival forces began
to reorganize for another struggle. From the south and from the
shipping interests of New England came memorials in opposition to
the tariff and in support of the theory of free-trade. [Footnote:
Am. State Papers, Finance, V. passim.] At a convention which met in
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, July 30, 1827, a hundred delegates from
thirteen states met to promote the cause of protection. Finding it
necessary to combine the various interests, the convention
recommended increased duties both upon wool and woolen goods, and
the establishment of the minimum system. This combination was made
possible by the proposal of effectively counterbalancing the
prohibitory duties on wool by such use of the minimum device as
would give a practical monopoly of the American market to the
domestic manufacturers in the class of goods in which they were most
interested. To conciliate other sections, the convention adopted the
plan of an additional duty on hammered bar-iron, hemp and flax, and
various other products. [Footnote: Stanwood, Tariff Controversies,
I., 264; Niles' Register, XXXII., 369, 386, XXXIII., 187; Elliott,
Tariff Controversy, 239.]

When the twentieth Congress met, in December, 1827, Stevenson, of
Virginia, defeated the administration candidate, Taylor, of New
York, for the speakership, and both branches of Congress and the
important committees were put in the hands of the opposition to
Adams. Rejecting the plan of the Harrisburg Convention, the House
committee brought in a bill framed to satisfy the producers of raw
material, wool, hemp, flax, and iron, and to deny the protection
desired by New England. [Footnote: Taussig, Tariff Hist., 89-92;
Dewey, Financial Hist. of the U.S., 178-181.] Protection was
afforded to raw material even where the producers did not seek it;
and in some important cases high duties were imposed on raw material
not produced in this country. The essential point of the provision
respecting woolens favored by the Harrisburg Convention was the
fixing of four minimum points, but the committee on manufactures
interposed between the minimum of 50 cents and that of $2.50 a
minimum of $1, which effectively withdrew protection from the woolen
goods most largely manufactured in New England. Moreover, the
committee refused to establish the increasing rate of duty asked for
at Harrisburg.

Calhoun afterwards explained the attitude of the southern
representatives as follows: [Footnote: Calhoun, Works, III., 49; cf.
Houston, Nullification in S. C., 34, for similar explanations by
Mitchell and McDuffie; Clay, Works (Colton's ed.), II., 13; Jenkins,
Wright, 53.] Having before them the option of joining New England in
securing amendments satisfactory to the section, or, by resisting
all amendment, to force New England to join with the south in
rejecting the bill, which would involve Adams in the responsibility
for its defeat, they chose the latter alternative. Assurances were
given them by Jackson men that the two tariff interests would not be
united by mutual concession in the last stages of the discussion to
insure the passage of the bill; and so the south consistently threw
its weight against the passage of amendments modifying this
designedly high tariff. "We determined," said McDuffie later, "to
put such ingredients in the chalice as would poison the monster, and
commend it to his own lips." At the same time the Jackson men in
Pennsylvania, New York, and the west shifted their votes so as to
deprive New England of her share in the protective system. When an
amendment was proposed, striking out the duty on molasses--an
article essential to the rum distilleries of New England, but
obnoxious to the distillers of whiskey in Pennsylvania and the west-
-Pennsylvania and a large share of the delegation from Ohio, New
York, Indiana, and Kentucky voted with most of the south against the
amendment. On the motion to substitute the proposals of the
Harrisburg Convention with respect to wool and woolens, almost all
of the delegation of Pennsylvania, and a large portion of that of
New York and Kentucky, as well as the members from Indiana and
Missouri and the south, opposed the proposition. Thus the interests
of the seaboard protectionists were overcome by the alliance between
the middle states and the south, while the west was divided.

Bitter as was the pill, it was swallowed by enough of the eastern
protectionists to carry the act. The vote, 105 to 94, by which the
measure passed in the House [Footnote: See map.] (April 22, 1828)
showed all of the south in opposition, with the exception of certain
districts in Maryland and the western districts of Virginia, while
the great area of the states of the Ohio Valley and the middle
region was almost a unit in favor. The lower counties of New York
along the Hudson revealed their identity with the commercial
interests by opposing the bill. New England broke in two; Vermont,
New Hampshire, and Connecticut voted almost unanimously in favor of
the proposition; while Maine cast a unanimous vote in opposition.
Rhode Island was divided, and in Massachusetts only two districts--
that of the Berkshire wool-growing region and the Essex county area-
-supported the bill.

In the Senate, an amendment was passed making the duty on woolens an
ad valorem rate of forty-five per cent., but retaining the minima.
Various considerations induced some New England friends of Adams to
support the measure. Webster defended his action in voting for the
bill by declaring that New England had accepted the protective
system as the established policy of the government, and after 1824
had built up her manufacturing enterprises on that basis.
Nevertheless, in the final vote in the Senate, the five northern
members who opposed were all from New England.

Thus the "tariff of abominations," shaped by the south for defeat,
satisfactory to but a fraction of the protectionists, was passed by
a vote of 26 to 21 in the Senate, May 13, 1828, and was concurred in
by the House. John Randolph did not greatly overstate the case when
he declared that "the bill referred to manufactures of no sort or
kind, but the manufacture of a President of the United States"; for,
on the whole, the friends of Jackson had, on this issue, taken sides
against the friends of Adams, and in the effort to make the latter
unpopular had produced a tariff which better illustrated sectional
jealousies and political intrigues than the economic policy of the
nation. [Footnote: Register of Debates, 20 Cong., I Sess., IV., pt.
ii., 2472; Niles' Register, XXV., 55-57, analyzes the votes to show
the political groupings; cf. Taussig, Tariff History, 101, 102.]

The tariff agitation of 1827 and the passage of the act of 1828
inflamed the south to the point of conflagration. John Randolph's
elevation of the standard of revolt in 1824 now brought him credit
as the prophet of the gospel of resistance. "Here is a district of
country," he had proclaimed, in his speech on the tariff in that
year, "extending from the Patapsco to the Gulf of Mexico, from the
Allegheny to the Atlantic; a district... which RAISES FIVE-SIXTHS of
all the exports of this country that are OF HOME GROWTH.... I bless
God that in this insulted, oppressed and outraged region, we are as
to our counsels in regard to this measure, but as one man. We are
proscribed and put to the ban; and if we do not feel, and feeling,
do not act, we are bastards to those fathers who achieved the
Revolution." [Footnote: Annals of Cong., 18 Cong., I Sess., II.,

It was South Carolina, rather than Virginia, however, that led in
violent proposals. [Footnote: Houston, Nullification in S. C.] Dr.
Cooper, an Englishman, president of South Carolina College, had long
been engaged in propagating the Manchester doctrines of laissez-
faire and free-trade, and he was greeted with applause when he
declared that the time had come to calculate the value of the Union.
[Footnote: Niles' Register, XXXIII., 59+] Agricultural societies met
to protest and to threaten. Turnbull, an aggressive and violent
writer, in a stirring series of papers published in 1827, under the
title of The Crisis, over the signature of Brutus, sounded the
tocsin of resistance. He repudiated the moderation and nationalism
of "Messrs. Monroe and Calhoun," and stood squarely on the doctrine
that the only safety for the south was in the cultivation of
sectionalism. "In the Northern, Eastern, Middle, and Western
States," said he, "the people have no fears whatever from the
exercise of the implied powers of Congress on any subject; but it is
in the SOUTH alone where uneasiness begins to manifest itself, and a
sensitiveness prevails on the subject of consolidation." "The more
NATIONAL and the less FEDERAL the government becomes, the more
certainly will the interest of the great majority of the States be
promoted, but with the same certainty, will the interests of the
SOUTH be depressed and destroyed."

On their return from the session of 1828, the South Carolina
delegation added fuel to the fire. In a caucus of the members, held
shortly after the passage of the tariff, proposals were even made
for the delegation to vacate their seats in Congress as a protest,
and in this temper they returned to their state. [Footnote: Niles'
Register, XXXV., 184, 202.] McDuffie told his constituents that
there was no hope of a change of the system in Congress; that the
southern states, by the law of self-preservation, were free to save
themselves from utter ruin; and that the government formed for their
protection and benefit was determined to push every matter to their
annihilation. He recommended that the state should levy a tax on the
consumption of northern manufactured goods, boycott the live-stock
of Kentucky, and wear homespun; and he closed by drawing a
comparison between the wrongs suffered by the colonists when they
revolted from Great Britain and that by which the south was now
oppressed. [Footnote: Niles' Register, XXXIII., 339; cf. ibid.,
XXXV., 82, 131.]

Although South Carolina and all of the staple-producing section
except Louisiana and Kentucky were in substantial agreement upon the
iniquity of the tariff, yet, in respect to the remedy, they were
widely at variance. Protest had proven ineffective; proposals of
resistance by force, plans for a southern convention, and threats of
disunion were rife. [Footnote: Houston, Nullification in S.C., 49-
52, 73-75.]

Such was the situation which confronted Calhoun when he returned
from Washington and found that his section had passed beyond him.
The same considerations that had aroused this storm of opposition
also had their effect upon him. But he was still hopeful that, by
the election of Jackson, a cotton-planter, the current of northern
power might be checked; and he looked forward also to the prospect
that he himself might eventually reach the presidential chair.
Before him lay the double task of uniting himself to his friends in
South Carolina, lest he lose touch with the forces of his own
section, and of framing a platform of opposition that should be
consistent, logical, and defensible; and, at the same time, of
providing some mode of avoiding the forcible revolution that the
hotheads of his section threatened as an immediate programme.

It was by the very processes of western growth that the seaboard
south now found itself a minority section and the home of
discontent. As the rich virgin soil of the Gulf plains opened to
cotton culture, the output leaped up by bounds. In 1811 the total
product was eighty million pounds; in 1821 it was one hundred and
seventy-seven millions; in 1826 it was three hundred and thirty
millions. Prices fell as production increased. In 1816 the average
price of middling uplands in New York was nearly thirty cents, and
South Carolina's leaders favored the tariff; in 1820 it was
seventeen cents, and the south saw in the protective system a
grievance; in 1824 it was fourteen and three-quarters cents, and the
South-Carolinians denounced the tariff as unconstitutional. When the
woolens bill was agitated in 1827, cotton had fallen to but little
more than nine cents, and the radicals of the section threatened
civil war.

Moreover, the price of slaves was increased by the demands of the
new cotton-fields of Alabama, Mississippi, and the rest of the
southwest, so that the Carolina planter had to apply a larger
capital to his operations, while, at the same time, the cheap and
unexhausted soil of these new states tended still further to hamper
the older cotton areas in their competition, and the means of
transportation from the western cotton-fields were better than from
those of South Carolina. By devoting almost exclusive attention to
her great staple, South Carolina had made herself dependent on the
grain and live-stock of the west and the manufactures of the north
or of England; and, when the one crop from which she derived her
means of purchasing declined in value, the state was plunged in
unrelieved distress. Nevertheless, the planters of the old south saw
clearly but two of the causes of their distress: the tariff, which
seemed to them to steal the profits of their crops; and internal
improvements, by which the proceeds of their indirect taxes were
expended in the west and north. Their indignation was also fanned to
a fiercer flame by apprehensions over the attitude of the north
towards slavery.

In the summer of 1828, Calhoun addressed himself to the statement of
these grievances and to the formulation of a remedy. After
consultation with leading men in his home at Fort Hill, he was ready
to shape a document which, nominally a report of a legislative
committee (since it was not expedient for the vice-president to
appear in the matter), put in its first systematic form the doctrine
of nullification. This so-called Exposition, [Footnote: Calhoun,
Works, VI., 1-59.] beginning with the unconstitutionality and
injustice of protection, developed the argument that the tax on
imports, amounting to about twenty-three million dollars, fell, in
effect, solely on the south, because the northern sections
recompensed themselves by the increased profits afforded to their
productions by protection; while the south, seeking in the markets
of the world customers for its staples, and obliged to purchase
manufactures and supplies in return, was forced to pay tribute on
this exchange for the benefit of the north. "To the growers of
cotton, rice, and tobacco, it is the same whether the Government
takes one-third of what they raise, for the liberty of sending the
other two-thirds abroad, or one-third of the iron, salt, sugar,
coffee, cloth and other articles they may need in exchange for the
liberty of bringing them home."

Estimating the annual average export of domestic produce at fifty-
three million dollars, the Exposition attributed to the planting
section at least thirty-seven million dollars--over two-thirds of
the total exports; the voting power of this section in the House of
Representatives was but seventy-six, while the rest of the Union had
one hundred and thirty-seven members. Thus, one-third of the
political Union exported more than two-thirds of the domestic
products. Assuming imports to equal exports, and the tariff of 1828
to average forty-five per cent., the south would pay sixteen million
six hundred and fifty thousand dollars as its share of contributions
to the national treasury. Calhoun then presented the ominous
suggestion that, if the staple section had a separate custom-house,
it would have for its own use a revenue of sixteen million six
hundred and fifty thousand dollars from foreign trade alone, not
counting the imports from the north, which would bring in millions

"We are mere consumers," he declared, "the serfs of the system--out
of whose labor is raised, not only the money paid into the Treasury,
but the funds out of which are drawn the rich rewards of the
manufacturer and his associates in interest."

Taking for granted that the price at which the south could afford to
cultivate cotton was determined by the price at which it received
its supplies, he argued that, if the crop could be produced at ten
cents a pound, the removal of the duty would enable the planter to
produce it at five and one-half cents, and thus to drive out
competition and to add three or four hundred thousand bales annually
to the production, with a corresponding increase of profit. The
complaints of the south were not yet exhausted, for the Exposition
went on to point out that, in the commercial warfare with Europe
which protection might be expected to engender, the south would be
deprived of its market and might be forced to change its industrial
life and compete with the northern states in manufactures. The
advantages of the north would probably insure it an easy victory;
but if not, then an attack might be expected on the labor system of
the south, in behalf of the white workmen of the north.

What, then, was the remedy? Calhoun found this, although in
fragmentary form, ready to his hand. The reserved rights of the
sovereign states had long been the theoretical basis of southern
resistance. In the argumentation of such writers as Taylor,
Turnbull, and Judge Roane, not to mention Madison and Jefferson in
the Virginia and Kentucky resolutions, there was material for the
system; but as yet no one had stated with entire clearness the two
features which Calhoun made prominent in his Exposition. First, he
made use of reasoning in sharp contrast to that of the statesmen of
the days of the American Revolution, by rejecting the doctrine of
the division of sovereignty between the states and the general
government. [Footnote: McLaughlin, in Am. Hist. Rev., V., 482, 484.]
Clearly differentiating government from sovereignty, he limited the
application of the division to the powers of government, and
attributed the sovereignty solely to the people of the several
states. This conception of the unity of sovereignty was combined
with the designation of the Constitution as articles of compact
between sovereign states, each entitled to determine whether or not
the general government had usurped powers not granted by the
Constitution, and each entitled peacefully to prevent the operation
of the disputed law within its own limits, pending a decision by the
same power that could amend the Constitution--namely, three-fourths
of the states.

These doctrines were brought out with definiteness and with the
deliberate intention of creating from them a practical governmental
machinery to be peacefully applied for the preservation of the
rights of the states. In effect, therefore, Calhoun, the logician of
nationalism in the legislation that followed the War of 1812, became
the real architect of the system of nullification as a plan of
action rather than a protest. As it left his hands, the system was
essentially a new creation. In the Exposition, the doctrine was
sketched only in its larger lines, for it was in later documents
that he refined and elaborated it. It was intended as a substitute
for revolution and disunion--but it proved to be the basis on which
was afterwards developed the theory of peaceable secession. Calhoun
did not publicly avow his authorship or his adhesion to
nullification until three years later.

The rallying of the party of the Union in South Carolina against
this doctrine, the refusal of Georgia, Virginia, and other southern
states to accept it as the true exposition of the Virginia and
Kentucky resolutions, the repudiation of it by the planting states
of the southwest, all belong to the next volume of this series.

Yet the Exposition marks the culmination of the process of
transformation with which this volume has dealt. Beginning with
nationalism, the period ends with sectionalism. Beginning with unity
of party and with the almost complete ascendancy of republicanism of
the type of Monroe, it ends with sharply distinguished rival
parties, as yet unnamed, but fully organized, and tending to differ
fundamentally on the question of national powers. From the days when
South-Carolinians led in legislation for tariff and internal
improvements, when Virginians promoted the Colonization Society, and
Georgians advocated the policy of mitigating the evils of slavery by
scattering the slaves, we have reached the period when a united
south protests against "the American system," and the lower south
asserts that slavery must not be touched--not even discussed.

In various southern states the minority counties of the coast,
raising staples by slave labor, had protected their property
interests against the free majority of farmers in the interior
counties by so apportioning the legislature as to prevent action by
the majority. Now the same conditions existed for the nation. The
free majority embraced a great zone of states in the north and west;
the south, a minority section, was now seeking protection against
the majority of the Union by the device of state sovereignty; and
Calhoun made himself the political philosopher of the rights of this
minority section, applying to the nation the experience of South
Carolina. [Footnote: Calhoun. Works, I., 400-405.]

Still the great currents of national growth ran on. New England was
achieving unity and national feeling as a manufacturing region, and
Webster was developing those powers which were to make him the
orator of consolidation. While the leaders of the middle states
played the game of personal politics, their people and those of the
growing west were rallying around the man who personified their
passion for democracy and nationalism--the fiery Jackson, who
confused sectional opposition to the government with personal
hostility to himself. This frontiersman was little likely to allow
political metaphysics, or even sectional suffering, to check his
will. And on the frontier of the northwest, the young Lincoln sank
his axe deep in the opposing forest.




The authorities characterized in the Critical Essays of Babcock's
Rise of American Nationality, MacDonald's Jacksonian Democracy, and
Hart's Slavery and Abolition (American Nation, XIII., XV., XVI.),
include most of the general authorities, and need not be repeated
here in detail. In addition, account should be taken of several
indexes to government documents: L.C. Ferrell, Tables... and
Annotated Index (1902); two by J.G. Ames: Finding List (1893) and
Check List (1895); J.M. Baker, Finding List (1900-1901); the Index
to the Reports of... Committees of the House (1887); and Index to
Reports of... Committees of the Senate (1887); Ben Perley Poore,
Descriptive Catalogue of Government Publications (1885); L.P. Lane,
Aids in the Use of Government Publications (American Statistical
Association, Publications, VII. (1900), 40-57); L.C. Ferrell,
"Public Documents of the United States" (Library Journal, XXVI.,
671); Van Tyne and Leland, Guide to the Archives of the Government
of the United States in Washington (Carnegie Institution,
Publications, No. 14, 1904). For bibliography of state official
issues, see R.R. Bowker [editor], State Publications: a Provisional
List of the Official Publications of the Several States of the
United States from their Organization (3 vols., issued 1899-1905);
see also J.N. Larned, Literature of American History (1902), 7-13;
and I.S. Bradley, in American Historical Association, Report, 1896,
I., 296-319, a bibliography of documentary and newspaper material
for the Old Northwest.


The general histories of the period 1819-1829 almost without
exception extend over earlier or later fields, and are described in
earlier or later volumes of this series. To the usual list, James
Schouler, J.B. McMaster, George Tucker, H.E. Von Hoist, J.P. Gordy,
may be added: S. Perkins, Historical Sketches of the United States,
from the Peace of 1815 to 1830 (1830), the work of a careful


The most serviceable biographies in this period can be found through
the lists in Channing and Hart, Guide to the Study of American
History (1896), p. 25. The volumes of the American Statesmen series
are accurate and well written, especially Morse's John Quincy Adams,
Schurz's Henry Clay, Adams's John Randolph, Roosevelt's Thomas H.
Benton, McLaughlin's Lewis Cass, Shepard's Van Buren. SECTIONAL

Among the bibliographies useful for attacking the mass of local and
state histories for this period are the following: R.R. Bowker,
State Publications (New York, 1899, 1902, 1905); A.P.C. Griffin,
Bibliography of Historical Societies of the United States (American
Historical Association, Reports, 1890, 1892, 1893).

NEW ENGLAND.--The history of this section, since the Revolution, has
been neglected, but indications of its importance appear in Justin
Winsor, Memorial History of Boston (4 vols., 1880-1882), III., IV.,
and I.B. Richman, Rhode Island: a Study in Separatism (1905). M.
Louise Greene, The Development of Religious Liberty in Connecticut
(1905), deals with the toleration movement. The various historical
societies print documentary material; but, for the most part, New
England's activity in this decade must be sought in original
material, biographies, travels, scattered monographs, and, in
fragments, in state histories.

MIDDLE STATES.--The state and local histories of the middle region
are more satisfactory on this period, but the political life must be
sought chiefly in biographies; and the economic and social
conditions in the scattered material elsewhere cited in this
bibliography. J.G. Wilson, Memorial History of the City of New York
(4 vols., 1891-1893); and Scharf and Westcott, History of
Philadelphia (3 vols., 1884), are serviceable accounts of the
development of the great cities of the section.

THE SOUTH.--Virginia has been neglected in this period, but the
travelers afford interesting material; and a good view of plantation
life is T.C. Johnson, Life and Letters of Robert Lewis Dabney
(1903). For North Carolina, the literature is cited in S.B. Weeks,
Bibliography of the Historical Literature of North Carolina (1895).
Two monographs by J.S. Bassett, Anti-Slavery Leaders of North
Carolina (Johns Hopkins University Studies, XVI., No. 6), and
History of Slavery in North Carolina (ibid., XVII., Nos. 7, 8), are
especially important for the up-country. W.E. Dodd, Life of
Nathaniel Macon (1903), is useful on this period. South Carolina
conditions are shown in R. Mills, Statistics of South Carolina
(1826); and W.A. Schaper, Sectionalism and Representation in South
Carolina (American Historical Association, Report, 1900, I.).
Georgia is depicted in U.B. Phillips, Georgia and State Rights
(ibid., 1901, II.); [G.R. Gilmer], Sketches of Some of the First
Settlers of Upper Georgia (1855); and [A.B. Longstreet], Georgia
Scenes (last edition, 1897), the latter made up of rollicking
character-sketches. Among the many travelers useful (after
criticism) for the South and Southwest may be mentioned, the Duke of
Saxe-Weimar, Murat, Paulding, Hodgson, and Mrs. Royall.
Correspondence illustrating Mississippi conditions is printed in
J.F.H. Claiborne, Life and Correspondence of John A. Quitman (2
vols., 1860). Two lists by T.M. Owen, Bibliography of Alabama
(American Historical Association, Report, 1897); and Bibliography of
Mississippi (ibid., 1889, I.), open a wealth of southwestern
material. For Louisiana, there are various popular histories of New
Orleans; and A. Fortier, History of Louisiana (1904), III.; S.D.
Smedes, Memorials of a Southern Planter [Thomas Dabney], (1887, also
1890), is highly valuable in the developed opening of the Gulf area.
One of the best pictures of southwestern conditions is Lincecum's
"Autobiography" (so called), in the Mississippi Historical Society,
Publications, VIII. W.G. Brown, Lower South in American History
(1902), is illuminative.

THE WEST.--The material for the West is scattered, the general
histories of the Mississippi Valley failing to deal extensively with
settlement. John B. McMaster, History of the People of the United
States (1883-1900), IV., chap, xxxiii., and V., chap, xlv., give
good accounts of the westward movement. B.A. Hinsdale, Old Northwest
(2 vols., 1888, 1899), is scholarly, but brief on this period. W.H.
Venable, Beginnings of Literary Culture in the Ohio Valley (1891),
is important. Of especial value are the travelers, gazetteers, etc.,
among which the following are exceptionally useful: Timothy Flint,
Recollections of the Last Ten Years (1826); Timothy Flint, History
and Geography of the Mississippi Valley (2 vols., 2d edition, 1832);
four books by J. Hall, viz.: Letters from the West (1828), Legends
of the West (1833 and 1869), Notes on the Western States (1838),
Statistics of the West (1836); Ohio Navigator (1821 and many other
editions); J.M. Peck, Guide for Emigrants (1831); H.S. Tanner, View
of the Valley of the Mississippi (1834). All of these, of course,
must be used critically.

Among the contemporaneous state histories, T. Ford, History of
Illinois (1854); J. Reynolds, My Own Times (1854-1855, also 1879),
though unreliable in detail, have a value as material on pioneer
conditions. The historical societies of the western states abound in
old settlers' accounts. W.C. Howells, Recollections of Life in Ohio
(1895), is a gem. P.G. Thomson, Bibliography of Ohio (1880), is the
key to an extensive literature. There is no good history of Kentucky
in this period; but J. Phelan, History of Tennessee (1888), is
excellent. Lives of Clay, Jackson, and Benton all aid in
understanding the region.

THE FAR WEST.--H.M. Chittenden, The American Fur Trade of the Far
West (3 vols., 1902), is excellent. The larger histories of the
Pacific states, viz.: H. . Bancroft, Works; Hittell, California; and
Lyman, Oregon, are characterized by Garrison, Westward Expansion
(American Nation, XVII.). The publications of the Oregon Historical
Society and the Quarterly of the Texas Historical Society are
extremely useful. D.G. Wooten [editor], Comprehensive History of
Texas (2 vols., 1899), has material on settlement in this period.
G.P. Garrison, Texas (1903), is an excellent little book. Brief
accounts of exploration in this period are in E.C. Semple, American
History and Its Geographic Conditions (1903); and R.G. Thwaites,
Rocky Mountain Exploration (1904). J. Schafer, History of the
Pacific Northwest (1905), and G.W. James, In and about the Old
Missions of California (1905), are useful brief presentations of
conditions on the coast. For all this field the H.H. Bancroft
library, now the property of the University of California, is the
great collection of documentary material. Illustrative books by
contemporaries are: R.H. Dana, Two Years before the Mast (1849 and
other editions), giving California life; W. Irving, Adventures of
Captain Bonneville (1849), giving Rocky Mountain life; and J. Gregg,
Commerce of the Prairies; or, the Journal of a Santa Fe Trader (2
vols., 1844, also in Thwaites, Early Western Travels, XIX., XX.).


Charles McCarthy, The Antimasonic Party (American Historical
Association, Report, 1902, I.), sets a high standard as a
monographic party history; C.H. Rammelkamp gives a detailed study of
the Campaign of 1824 in New York (in ibid., 1904, pp. 175-202); all
of the biographies of the contemporary statesmen deal with the
parties of this period; and J.D. Hammond, History of Political
Parties in the State of New York (2 vols., 1852), is a good history
by a contemporary. U.B. Phillips, Georgia and State Rights (American
Historical Association, Report, 1901, II.), gives a modern treatment
of state politics.

On political institutions the following are particularly useful:
Edward Stanwood, History of the Presidency (1898); M. P. Pollett,
The Speaker of the House of Representatives (1896); L. G.
McConachie, Congressional Committees (1898); C. R. Fish, The Civil
Service and the Patronage (Harvard Historical Studies, XI., 1905);
F. W. Dallinger, Nominations for Elective Office in the United
States (ibid., IV., 1897); J. B. McMaster, Acquisition of Political,
Social, and Industrial Rights of Man in America (1903).


For a list of records of debates, legislative journals, documents,
statutes, judicial decisions, treaties, and the like, see the
"Critical Essays" in the neighboring volumes, and in Channing and
Hart, Guide, p. 30.


To the various editions of the works of James Monroe, Henry Clay,
Daniel Webster, John C. Calhoun, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison,
Rufus King, described in other volumes of this series, may be added
John Quincy Adams, Memoirs: Comprising Portions of His Diary from
1795 to 1848 (edited by Charles Francis Adams, 12 vols., 1874-1877).
The diary is unusually full, and abounds in valuable material for
understanding the politics of the period and the character of Adams.
He was biased and harsh in his judgment of contemporaries, but
conscientious in his record. The Adams papers are now in the private
archives of the family at Quincy.

For statesmen of lesser distinction, see W. W. Story, Life and
Letters of Joseph Story (2 vols., 1851); L. G. Tyler, Letters and
Times of the Tylers (3 vols., 1884, also 1896). A collection of De
Witt Clinton's letters was published in Harper's Magazine, L., 409,
563, and other letters and papers are in the following: David
Hosack, Memoir of De Witt Clinton (1829); W. C. Campbell, Life and
Writings of De Witt Clinton (1849); James Renwick, Life of De Witt
Clinton (1854). There is no collection of Crawford's works; he is
said to have destroyed his papers; a few letters remain, some of
them in the possession of Dr. U. B. Phillips (University of
Wisconsin). In E. B. Washburne [editor], Edwards Papers (1884), and
N. W. Edwards, History of Illinois and Life and Times of Ninian
Edwards (1870), are important letters illustrating national as well
as western politics; see also the letters of Senator Mills of
Massachusetts, in Massachusetts Historical Society, Proceedings, 1st
series, XIX., 12-53; and those of Marshall, Kent, Story, and
Webster, in ibid., 26. series, XIV., 320 et seq., 398, 412 et seq. A
collection of Macon's letters in this decade is in North Carolina
University, James Sprunt Historical Monographs, No. 2. Literary men
and journalists are described by Herbert B. Adams, Life and Writings
of Jared Sparks (2 vols., 1893); John Binns, Recollections of His
Life, Written by Himself (1854); Amos Kendall, Autobiography (edited
by W. Stickney, 1872), valuable for Dartmouth College life and for
Kentucky in this period; Thurlow Weed, Autobiography (1883), useful
also for western New York; E. S. Thomas, Reminiscences of the Last
Sixty-five Years (2 vols., 1840), editor in Charleston, South
Carolina, and in Cincinnati; William Winston Seaton of the National
Intelligencer: a Biographical Sketch (1871), contains useful letters
by various persons from Washington; The John P. Branch Historical
Papers of Randolph--Macon College, Nos. 2 and 3 (1902, 1903),
contain some letters and a biography of Thomas Ritchie, editor of
the Richmond Enquirer.


In the group of autobiographies, reminiscences, etc., Thomas H.
Benton, Thirty Years' View; or, A History of the Working of the
American Government, 1820--1850 (2 vols., 1854), is the most
important: as a member of the Senate, Benton was active and
influential, and, despite his positive character, he aims at
fairness; Nathan Sargent, Public Men and Events [1817-1853], (2
vols., 1875), is made up of chatty sketches, with an anti-Jackson
bias; Josiah Quincy, Figures of the Past (1901), pen-pictures of men
of the period; B. F. Perry, Reminiscences of Public Men (two series:
1st, 1883; 2d, 1889), anecdotal views of South Carolinians; S. G.
Goodrich, Recollections of a Lifetime; or, Men and Things I Have
Seen (2 vols., 1886).


Manuscript collections are located in the reports of the Historical
Manuscripts Commission, published by the American Historical
Association in its annual Reports; and in Justin Winsor, Narrative
and Critical History of America, VIII. (1889). The Library of
Congress contains important manuscripts of Madison (calendared in
Bureau of Rolls and Library, Department of State, Bulletin, IV.); of
Jefferson (ibid., VI., VIII., X.); Monroe (indexed in ibid., II.),
and in W. C. Ford [editor], Papers of James Monroe (1904); indexes
of the manuscripts of Jackson and Van Buren are in progress. In the
New York Public Library are collections of correspondence of various
statesmen of the period (New York Public Library, Bulletin, V., 306
et seq.), including Monroe (calendared in ibid., V., 316, VII., 210,
247-257); Jackson (ibid., IV., 154-162, 188-198, 292-320, V., 316);
Calhoun (ibid., III., 324-333); James Barbour (ibid., V., 316, VI.,
22-34). The Clinton Papers are in the State Library at Albany, N. Y.
(American Historical Association, Report, 1898, p. 578). The papers
of Senator Mahlon Dickerson, of New Jersey, including letters from
important statesmen of the period, are in the possession of William.
Nelson, corresponding secretary of the New Jersey Historical
Society. The correspondence of Senator W. P. Mangum, of North
Carolina, including letters from Clay, Webster, etc., is in the
possession of Dr. S. B. Weeks, San Carlos, Arizona. The papers of
Vice-President Tompkins in the State Library at Albany are described
in Albany Institute, Transactions, XI., 223-240. The Plumer papers
are in the New Hampshire Historical Society.


The newspapers and periodicals constitute indispensable sources. For
the former the following catalogues are useful: Check List of
American Newspapers in the Library of Congress (1901); Wisconsin
Historical Society, Annotated Catalogue of Newspaper Files (1899);
W. F. Poole [editor], Index to Periodical Literature (1853 and later
editions), renders the magazines of the period accessible; and W. B.
Cairns, Development of American Literature from 1815 to 1833, with
especial Reference to Periodicals, in University of Wisconsin,
Bulletin (Literature Series, I., 1898), enumerates a list of
periodicals not indexed in Poole. Easily first in importance among
the periodicals useful on the period from 1819 to 1829 is Niles'
Weekly Register, edited by Hezekiah Niles (76 vols., 1811-1849),
which abounds in material, political, social, and economic; although
Niles was a strong protectionist, he was also fair-minded and
conscientious in collecting information. The North American Review
(Boston, begun in 1815 and still continues); The American Quarterly
Review (Philadelphia, 1827-1837); The Southern Review (Charleston,
1828-1832); The American Annual Register (New York, 1825-1833). The
Quarterly Register and Journal of the American Education Society
(1829-1843); The Methodist Magazine (1818-1840); The Christian
Examiner (Boston, 1824-1869); and Christian Monthly Spectator (1819-
1828), are examples of religious and educational publications. Among
periodicals which contain articles dealing with the decade, although
published later, are The Democratic Review, of which the first
number appeared in 1837; Hunt's Merchants' Magazine and Commercial
Review (first volume, 1839); and D. B. De Bow's Commercial Review of
the South and West (first volume, 1846). Among the short-lived
magazines of the West are: The Western Review (Lexington, 1820-
1821); The Western Monthly Review (edited by Timothy Flint,
Cincinnati, 1827-1830); The Illinois Monthly Magazine (edited by
James Hall, 1830-1831); The Western Monthly Magazine (continuation
of the former, Cincinnati, 1833-1837).


Among the important sources for understanding the growth of the
country are various descriptions, gazetters, etc. Of the many books
of this class may be mentioned the following: Emigrants' Guide; or,
Pocket Geography of the Western States and Territories (Cincinnati,
1818); William Amphlett, Emigrants' Directory of the Western States
of North America (London, 1819); D. Blowe, Geographical, Commercial,
and Agricultural View of the United States (Liverpool, about 1820);
John Bristed, Resources of the United States of America (New York,
1818); S. R. Brown, The Western Gazetteer (Auburn, N. Y., 1817); J.
S. Buckingham, America, Historical, Statistical, and Descriptive
(New York and London, 1841); J. S. Buckingham, Eastern and Western
States (London, 1842); J. S. Buckingham, Slave States (London,
1842); William Cobbett, The Emigrant's Guide London, 1830); S. H.
Collins, The Emigrant's Guide to and Description of the United
States of America (Hull, 1830); Samuel Cumings, Western Pilot
(Cincinnati, 1840); E. Dana, Geographical Sketches on the Western
Country (Cincinnati, 1819); William Darby, Emigrants' Guide to
Western and Southwestern States and Territories (New York, 1818);
William Darby, Geographical Description of the State of Louisiana,
the Southern Part of the State of Mississippi, and Territory of
Alabama (New York, 1817); Timothy Flint, Condensed Geography and
History of the Western States (2 vols., Cincinnati, 1828); Timothy
Flint, History and Geography of the Mississippi Valley (2 vols.,
Cincinnati, 1833); F. Hayward, The New England Gazetteer (3d
edition, Boston, 1839); D. Hewett, The American Traveller
(Washington, 1825); Isaac Holmes, An Account of the United States of
America (London, 1823); Indiana Gazetteer (ad edition, Indianapolis,
1833); John Kilbourne, Ohio Gazetteer (Columbus, 1819, 1833); Win.
Kingdom, Jr., America and the British Colonies (London, 1820); W.
Lindsay, View of America (Hawick, 1824); E. Mackenzie, Historical,
Topographical, and Descriptive View of the United States (Newcastle-
upon-Tyne, 1819); Joseph Martin, New and Comprehensive Gazetteer of
Virginia (Charlottesville, 1835); John Melish, A Geographical
Description of the United States (Philadelphia, 1816, 1822, 1826);
John Melish, Information and Advice to Emigrants to the United
States (Philadelphia, 1819); John Melish, The Travellers' Directory
through the United States (Philadelphia, 1815, 1819, 1822, New York,
1825); Robert Mills, Statistics of South Carolina (Charleston,
1826); J. M. Peck, A Guide for Emigrants (Boston, 1831, 1837); J. M.
Peck, New Guide to the West (Cincinnati, 1848); J. M. Peck,
Gazetteer of Illinois (Jacksonville, 1834; Philadelphia, 1837);
Abiel Sherwood, Gazetteer of the State of Georgia (3d edition,
Washington, 1837); T. Spofford, Gazetteer of the State of New York
(New York, 1824); [H. S. Tanner, publisher], View of the Valley of
the Mississippi (Philadelphia, 1834); [H. S. Tanner, publisher],
Geographical, Historical, and Statistical View of the Central or
Middle United States (Philadelphia, 1841); D. B. Warden,
Statistical, Political, and Historical Account of the United States
of North America (3 vols., Edinburgh, 1819.)


The life of this period is illustrated by the reports of travelers;
but the reader must remember that the traveller carries his
prejudices, is prone to find in striking exceptions the
characteristics of a region, and is exposed to misinformation by the
natives; many of these travelers are, nevertheless, keen observers,
well worth attention, and, when checked by comparison with others,
they are a useful source. A full list of the travels bearing on the
West and South from 1819 to 1829 would take more space than can be
allotted here. Bibliographies of travels in the United States may be
found in Justin Winsor, Narrative and Critical History of America
(1884-1889), VIII., 493; Channing and Hart, Guide to American
History (1896), p. 24; W. B. Bryan, Bibliography of the District of
Columbia (1900), Article "America" (Senate Document, 56 Cong., 1
Sess., No. 61); P. G. Thomson, Bibliography of Ohio (1880); R. G.
Thwaites, On the Storied Ohio (1897), App.; H. T. Tuckerman, America
and Her Commentators (1864); B.C. Steiner, Descriptions of Maryland
(Johns Hopkins University Studies, XXII., No. 6.), 608-647. The most
important collection of travels is R. G. Thwaites [editor], Early
Western Travels (1748-1846), to be completed in thirty volumes and
an analytical index. For an estimate of English travellers, see J.
B. McMaster, United States, V., chap, xlviii. A list of travels in
the period 1820-1860 will be found in Albert Bushnell Hart, Slavery
and Abolition (American Nation, XVI.), chap. xxii.


For works on slavery, see Hart, Slavery and Abolition (American
Nation, XVI.), chap. xxii. The general histories, such as W. H.
Smith, Political History of Slavery (1903), and G. W. Williams,
History of the Negro Race in America (2 vols., 1883), leave much to
be desired. Among the most important references are the Reports of
the American Colonization Society; J. H. T. McPherson, History of
Liberia (Johns Hopkins University Studies, IX., No. 10.); John S.
Bassett, Anti-Slavery Leaders of North Carolina (ibid., XVI., No.
6); and Slavery in the State of North Carolina (ibid., XVII., Nos.
7, 8); H. S. Cooley, Study of Slavery in New Jersey (ibid., XIV.,
Nos. 9, 10); S. B. Weeks, Anti-Slavery Sentiment in the South
(Southern History Association, Publications, II., No. 2); S. B.
Weeks, Southern Quakers and Slavery (1896); William Birney, James G.
Birney and His Times (1890); W. H. Collins, Domestic Slave-Trade
(1904); W. E. B. Du Bois, The Suppression of the African Slave-Trade
to the United States of America (Harvard Historical Studies, I.,
1896); Mary S. Locke, Anti-Slavery in America... 1619-1808
(Radcliffe College Monographs, No. 11, 1901); J. P. Dunn, Indiana, a
Redemption from Slavery (1888); N. D. Harris, The History of Negro
Servitude in Illinois (1904); E. B. Washburne, Sketch of Edward
Coles, Second Governor of Illinois, and of the Slavery Struggle of
1823-4 (1882). The economic history of slavery can be written only
after much monographic work; compare U. B. Phillips, "Economic Cost
of Slave-Holding in the Cotton Belt," in Political Science
Quarterly, XX., 267.

On the history of cotton, see M. B. Hammond, Cotton Industry, in
American Economic Association, Publications, new series, No. 1
(1897); E. Von Halle, Baumwollproduktion (in Schmoller, Staats und
Social-wissenschaftliche Forschungen, XV.); E. G. Donnell, History
of Cotton (1872); J. L. Watkins, Production and Price of Cotton for
One Hundred Years (U. S. Department of Agriculture, Division of
Statistics, Miscellaneous Series, Bulletin, No. 9, 1895).

The best sketch of the Missouri Compromise is J. A. Woodburn, The
Historical Significance of the Missouri Compromise (American
Historical Association, Report, 1893, pp. 249-298). Source material
is in the Annals of Congress; the works of King, Jefferson, Benton,
and J. Q. Adams, above-mentioned; and also Congressional Globe, 30
Cong., 2 Sess., App.; William and Mary College Quarterly, X.


On the reaction towards state sovereignty, documentary material so
well selected as to have the effect of a monograph is in H. V. Ames,
State Documents on Federal Relations (1900-1905), Nos. 3-5. The
works of John Taylor of Caroline are essential, especially
Construction Construed (1820), Tyranny Unmasked (1822), and New
Views of the Constitution of the United States (1823); Brutus [R.
Turnbull], The Crisis; or, Essays on the Usurpations of the Federal
Government (1827), is equally important. Defense of a Liberal
Construction of the Powers of Congress as regards Internal
Improvements, etc., with a Complete Refutation of the Ultra
Doctrines Respecting Consolidation and State Sovereignty, Written by
George M'Duffle, Esq., in the Year 1821 over the Signature "One of
the People" (1831), is an important pamphlet to mark the extent of
the changing views of southern leaders. Judge Spencer Roane's
antagonism to Marshall's nationalizing decisions is brought out in
his articles in Randolph-Macon College, John P. Branch Historical
Papers, No. 2; see also Jefferson, Writings (Ford's edition), X.;
Massachusetts Historical Society, Proceedings, ad series, XIV., 327
(Marshall's strictures on Roane); and the case of Cohens vs.
Virginia, in 6 Wheaton, 264. Calhoun's "Exposition of 1828" is in
his Works, VI., 1-59. Governor Troup's defiance of the United States
is best given in E. J. Harden, Life of George M. Troup (1859),
containing many of his letters. T. Cooper, Consolidation, an Account
of Parties (2d edition, 1830, and in Examiner, II., 86, 100), is a
South Carolina view. The best monographs in this field are David F.
Houston, A Critical Study of Nullification in South Carolina
(Harvard Historical Studies, III., 1893), and U. B. Phillips,
Georgia and State Rights (American Historical Association, Report,
1901, II.).


Commerce and Trade.-For this period, the best commercial
authorities, aside from government documents, are Timothy Pitkin, A
Statistical View of the Commerce of the United States of America
(1835), and W. P. Sterns, Foreign Trade of the United States, 1820-
1840, in Journal of Political Economy, VIII., 34, 452. See also
Hazard's United States Commercial and Statistical Register (6 vols.,
1840-1842); Register of Pennsylvania (16 vols., 1828-1835); J. R.
M'Culloch, A Dictionary, Practical, Theoretical, and Historical, of
Commerce and Commercial Navigation (edited by Henry Vethake; 2
vols., 1852); John MacGregor, Commercial Statistics of America: a
Digest of Her Productive Resources, Commercial Legislation, Customs,
Tariffs, Shipping, Imports and Exports, Monies, Weights, and
Measures (London, no date). On internal trade, see W. F. Switzler.
Report on Internal Commerce of the United States, Treasury
Department, Bureau of Statistics, submitted January 30, 1888, pt.
ii., Document No. 1039b; Timothy Flint, History and Geography of the
Mississippi Valley; and H. S. Tanner [publisher], View of the Valley
of the Mississippi, both cited above.

Navigation and Shipping.--See the above and the following: W. H.
Bates, American Navigation: the Political History of Its Rise and
Ruin, and the Proper Means for Its Encouragement (1902); W. L.
Marvin, The American Merchant Marine: Its History and Romance from
1620 to 1902 (1902); D. A. Wells, Our Merchant Marine: How It Rose,
Increased, Became Great, Declined, and Decayed (1882). In these
works there is a tendency to controversy.

Finance.--The best manual on the financial history of the period is
Davis R. Dewey, Financial History of the United States (1903), clear
and judicious, with full bibliography. The best accounts of banking
are: R. C. H. Catterall, The Second Bank of the United States
(University of Chicago, Decennial Publications, 2d series, II.,
1903); W. G. Sumner, A History of Banking in the United States (in A
History of Banking in All the Leading Nations, I.), 1896.

Manufactures.--On the development of manufactures, see C. D. Wright,
Industrial Evolution of the United States (1905); William Bagnall,
Textile Industries of the United States (1893); J. L. Bishop, A
History of American Manufactures from 1608 to 1860 (3d edition, 3
vols., 1868); S. N. D. North, A Century of Wool Manufacture
(Association of Wool Manufacturers, Bulletin, 1894); J. M. Swank,
History of the Manufacture of Iron (1884, revised 1892); Eleventh
Census of the United States, Report on Manufacturing Industries
(1890). American State Papers, Finance, IV.; Secretary of the
Treasury, Report, 1854-1855 (Executive Documents, 34 Cong., 1 Sess.,
No. 10). 86-92, valuable statistics.

The Tariff.--For the history of the tariff in the decade, the
following are useful: O. L. Elliott, The Tariff Controversy in the
United States, 1789-1833 (Leland Stanford, Jr., University,
Monographs, History and Economics, No. 1, 1892); Edward Stanwood,
American Tariff Controversies in the Nineteenth Century (2 vols.,
1903); F. W. Taussig, Tariff History of the United States (1888);
American State Papers, Finance, III.-V., memorials up to 1828;
Edward Young, Special Report on the Customs-Tariff of the United
States (1872); Committee on Finance, U. S. Senate, The Existing
Tariff on Imports into the United States, etc., and the Free List,
together with Comparative Tables of Present and Past Tariffs, and
Other Statistics Relating Thereto (Senate Reports, 48 Cong., 1
Sess., No. 12).cited as Tariff Compilation of 1884.

Labor.--The labor movement in the period is as yet insufficiently
studied; but see John B. McMaster, History of the People of the
United States, V.; and R. T. Ely, The Labor Movement in America
(1886; 3d edition, 1890); G. E. McNeill, The Labor Movement, the
Problem of To-Day (1887); John B. McMaster, Acquisition of the
Rights of Man in America, above mentioned; C. D. Wright, The
Industrial Evolution of the United States (1895).

Land.--On the land question, the American State Papers, Public
Lands, are the main reliance. See also Thomas Donaldson, The Public
Domain: Its History, with Statistics (Washington, 1884; also in
House Miscellaneous Documents, 47 Cong., 2 Sess., XIX., 1882-1883);
Emerick, The Credit System and the Public Domain (Vanderbilt
Southern History Society, Publications, No. 3, 1899). The actual
operation of the land system may be studied in the emigrant guides
and works of travelers previously cited.


General Views.--Upon the internal improvements of the United States
note the following: [G. Armroyd], Connected View of the Whole
Internal Navigation of the United States (Philadelphia, 1826; 2d
edition, 1830); G. T. Poussin, Travaux d'ameliorations interieurs
des Etats-Unis de 1824 a 1831 (Paris, 1836); S. A. Mitchell,
Compendium of the Internal Improvements of the United States
(Philadelphia, 1835); Michel Chevalier, Society, Manners, and
Politics in the United States (Boston, 1839); D. Hewett, The
American Traveller; or, National Directory Containing an Account of
all the Great Post-Roads and Most Important Cross-Roads in the
United States (Washington, 1825). The best estimate of the
significance of internal improvements in this period is G. S.
Callender, "Early Transportation and Banking Enterprises of the
States in Relation to the Growth of Corporations," in Quarterly
Journal of Economics, XVII., 3-54. A useful history of federal
internal improvement legislation is H. G. Wheeler, History of
Congress (1848), II., 109-513. J. L. Ringwalt, Development of
Transportation Systems in the United States (1888), a summary but
valuable account; H. V. Poor, Sketch of the Rise and Progress of
Internal Improvements, in his Manual of the Railroads of the United
States for 1881.

Official Publications.--Especially significant are: Niles' Register,
XXXVI., 168, a statement of the amount of money expended in each
state and territory upon works of internal improvement to October 1,
1828; J. C. Calhoun's report on carrying out the general survey act
of 1824, in his Works, V., 137-147; the historical survey of the
canals of the United States, Census of the United States, 1880, IV.
In the American State Papers, Post-Office, 120, is the Report of the
Postmaster-General, January, 1825, giving post routes, frequency of
mails, and cost of transportation. See, for statistical data on
internal improvements, River and Harbor Legislation from 1790 to
1887 (Senate Miscellaneous Documents, 49 Cong., 2 Sess., No. 91);
and Secretary of the Interior, Statement Showing Land Grants Made by
Congress to Aid in the Construction of Railroads, Wagon Roads,
Canals, and Internal Improvements,. . . from Records of the General
Land Office (1888).

Constitutional Aspects.--For this side of the question, see Joseph
Story, Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States (2
vols., 5th edition, 1891); James Monroe. View of the Conduct of the
Executive in Foreign Affairs of United States, in his Writings, VI.,
216-284, and in J. D. Richardson, Messages and Public Papers of the
Presidents, II., 144-183 (1899); E. C. Nelson, "Presidential
Influence on the Policy of Internal Improvements," in Iowa Journal
of History and Politics, IV., 3-69.

Special Monographs.--Among the more useful are R. Mills, Treatise on
Inland Navigation (1820); G. W. Ward, The Early Development of the
Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Project (Johns Hopkins University Studies,
XVII., 431, 1899); C. C. Weaver, History of Internal Improvements in
North Carolina Previous to 1860 (ibid., XXI., 1903); E. J. Benton,
The Wabash Trade Route, in the Development of the Old Northwest
(ibid., XXI., 1903); J. S. Young, Political and Constitutional Study
of the Cumberland Road (University of Chicago Press, 1904), is badly
arranged, but useful; T. B. Searight, Old Pike (Uniontown, Pa.,
1894), entertaining; T. K. Worthington, Historical Sketch of
Finances of Pennsylvania, in American Economic Association,
Publications, II., 126, gives a good sketch of the internal
improvements of that state; C. McCarthy, Antimasonic Party, in
American Historical Association, Report, 1902, chaps, viii.-x.,
shows the political influence of canal schemes in Pennsylvania. For
Ohio internal improvements, see C. N. Morris, Internal Improvements
in Ohio, in American Historical Association, Papers, III., 107
(1889); G. W. Dial, in Ohio Archeological and Historical Society,
Publications, XIII., 479; C. P. McClelland and C. C. Huntington,
History of the Ohio Canals; A. B. Hulbert, Historic Highways of
America (16 vols., 1902-1905), including IX., Waterways of Westward
Expansion; X., The Ohio River and Its Tributaries; XI., The
Cumberland Road; XII., Pioneer Roads and Experiences of Travellers;
XIII., XIV., Great American Canals [Chesapeake and Ohio,
Pennsylvania, and Erie], useful, but not well digested.

The best sources for the Erie Canal are Laws of the State of New
York, in Relation to the Erie and Champlain Canals, together with
the Annual Reports of the Canal Commissioners (Albany, 1825), and
the succeeding Reports of the Canal Commissioners; View of the Grand
Canal (pamphlet, Albany, 1825); and the biographies of Clinton by
Hosack and Renwick above mentioned.


On foreign relations, especially the Monroe Doctrine, see C.
Seignobos, Political History of Europe since 1814 (1899), 762, for
bibliography of the Holy Alliance. The following serve to elucidate
British policy: H. W. V. Temperley, Life of Canning (1905); A. G.
Stapleton, Political Life of the Right-Honourable George Canning (3
vols., 1831); E. J. Stapleton, Some Official Correspondence of
George Canning (3 vols., 1887); Festing, J. H. Frere and His
Friends; Memoirs and Correspondence of Viscount Castkreagh (8 vols.,
1848-1851), VII.; and Richard Rush, Memoranda of a Residence at the
Court of London [1817-1819], (2d edition, 1833), and Memoranda of a
Residence at the Court of London. . . from 1819 to 1825 (1845). For
Spanish America, see F. L. Paxson, Independence of the South
American Republics (1903), an excellent sketch, with bibliography;
J. H. Latane, Diplomatic Relations of the United States and Spanish
America (1900); J. M. Callahan, Cuba and International Relations
(1899). On the genesis of Monroe's message announcing the Doctrine,
the best survey is in the two articles by Worthington C. Ford, John
Quincy Adams: His Connection with the Monroe Doctrine, in
Massachusetts Historical Society, Proceedings, 2d series, XV.
(1902), 373-436, and in American Historical Review, VII., 676-696,
and VIII., 28-52. W. F. Reddaway, The Monroe Doctrine (1898; 2d
edition, 1906), is a particularly lucid and valuable study. Albert
Bushnell Hart, Foundations of American Foreign Policy (1901), chap.
vii.; John B. Moore, in Harper's Magazine, CIX., 857; G. Tucker,
Monroe Doctrine (Boston, 1885); and D. C. Gilman, James Monroe
(Boston, 1883), are other useful brief accounts. See also Frances
Wharton [editor], Digest of the International Law of the United
States (3 vols., 1887), I., superseded by John B. Moore, Digest (5
vols., 1906).

On the Panama Congress, considerable material is collected in The
Congress of 1826 at Panama (International American Conference, IV.,
Historical Appendix, 1890).

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