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Between the Andrew Jackson & Abraham Lincoln Presidencies 1837-1861

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Following Jackson – (Orphaned POW and War Hero)…

was the very diplomatic and peace-seeking Martin Van Buren (Democratic), who viewed abolitionism as the greatest threat to the nation’s unity and resisted the slightest interference with slavery in the states where it existed. NEXT WAS (Whig) William Henry Harrison, a pro-slavery president who attempted to introduce slavery into anti-slavery territories like Indiana in the interest of the economy, but was unsuccessful due to the growing movement and which was rejected by Congress. THE 10TH PRESIDENT JOHN TYLER (Whig) was against sectional conflict between the states and also against the regulation of slavery in any way by Congress. He was an anti-Jackson in terms of federal government, against all forms of uniform infrastructure. However, he did manage to protect the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury – and as we know it today from the Whig party…

Is America New Europe?

POLK 11TH (Democratic) was considered a strong Jacksonian and during his term, the nation would expand from the Atlantic to the Pacific. But his presidency was also about grave sectional divisions and violent conflicts over slavery, including “Bleeding Kansas;” while he himself was considered “a profit-hungry slave owner, ripping apart families for his own personal gain (whitehousehistory.org).” THE 12TH PRESIDENT ZACHARY TAYLOR a national war hero, was the last president to own slaves and both his son and daughter married influential southerners. He was one of, the total of four – Whig presidents and considered by some to be the most effective despite his lack of political experience. Being a moderate on slavery expansion, he allowed California to join as an anti-slavery state, and which was very unpopular with southerners because of the balance within the senate (millercenter.org). ONE YEAR LATER FILLMORE (Whig) FILLed in for Taylor, having begun his political career as an “anti-Mason” and during his presidency tried to do a little for each side by banning the slave trade in Washington D.C., for example, but not slavery. He also continued to let California become a free state. However, he maintained support of Taylor’s 1850 Compromise allowing newly acquired lands to conduct slavery as territories as opposed to becoming states subject to federal restrictions. Unfortunately, it is said that either side had become too heated for this type of governance. FRANKLIN PIERCE 14TH (Democratic) 1853-1857 “openly advocated for pro-slavery states as a Northerner in the 1850’s (constitutioncenter.org).” “Historians and other scholars generally rank Pierce among the worst of US Presidents (History.com).” THE FINAL PRESIDENT BEFORE LINCOLN, JAMES BUCHANAN 15TH (Democratic) 1857-1861 did not stop the southern states from seceding, and they finally just elected their own president – Jefferson Davis. He had been quoted stating how relieved he was when his presidency was over. It was during this Buchanan-period when Lincoln was elected to the senate. Lincoln immediately began to condemn: the Dredd Scott decision, the supreme court, former President Pierce, and Buchanan for being accomplices to the slave oligarchy. He told them it was Northern interference in southern decisions and, as such, was unconstitutional. Lincoln’s rhetoric also went beyond the litigious, and he often quoted the Bible in his dissent.

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Jackson’s modern-day legacy is tarnished by his dealings with Native Americans. Most accounts place the blame on Jackson as opposed to the white settlers, who were trying to acquire the land to grow cotton, etc. The Supreme Court in Worcester v. Georgia (1832) ruled against the southerners, but no one could actually stop them from taking this valuable land, and in any way they could, whether that be by stealing livestock, burning and looting houses and towns, committing mass murder, taking the lands by force etc. (history.com). Protecting the Native Americans (some of which had fought wars against settlers) would have required broad military action. This is when in 1830, Jackson had signed the Indian Removal Act, which allowed the federal government to remove Natives from these coveted areas east of the Mississippi and transfer them west to land in Oklahoma (Indian Territory). Part of the treaty agreement stated that transportation, food, medicine, and other necessities would be provided for during the 1200 mile journey to their new home, but there was no one available in the south to enforce that one either, and thousands died during the walk in what is known as “The Trail of Tears.” TURN PAGE

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