Chapter 8

January 5, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: History, US History
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Chapter 8 The New Nation 1786 - 1800

© 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.

Part One


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Chapter Focus Questions What were the tensions and conflicts between local and national authorities in the decades after the American Revolution? How did Americans differ in their views of the new Constitution, and how were those differences reflected in the struggle to achieve ratification? What were the essential structures of national government under the Constitution? How did American political parties first begin? What were the first stirrings of an authentic American national culture? © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Part Two

American Communities: A Rural Massachusetts Community Rises in Defense © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


American Communities: A Rural Massachusetts Colony Rises in Defense Several hundred farmers from Pelham and scores of other rural communities of western Massachusetts converged in the courthouse in Northampton. This occurred at a time of great economic depression which hit farmers hardest. The state raised property taxes to pay off state debt-tax was which considerably more oppressive than those levied by British. Two thirds of those who marched had been sued for debt or spent time in debtor’s prison— the people were looking for state relief. The people rose up in defense of their property and state and federal governments were forced to reevaluate the distribution of power. In 1786, Shays’ Rebellion broke out in western Massachusetts when farmers closed down courts to prevent debt executions. A militia from eastern Massachusetts crushed the rebellion. Conservatives concluded it was time “to clip the wings of a mad democracy.”

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Part Three

The Crisis Of The 1780s

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The Economic Crisis Economic problems like wartime inflation plagued the nation. Chart: Postwar Inflation, 1777–80: The Depreciation of Continental Currency After the war the key problem was depression. Britain dumped its surplus goods in American markets, creating a trade imbalance that drew hard currency out of the United States. Repayment of debt became both a political and economic problem. Chart: The Trade Deficit with Great Britain © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


FIGURE 8.1 Postwar Inflation, 1777–80: The Depreciation of Continental Currency The flood of Continental currency issued by Congress, and the shortage of goods resulting from the British blockade, combined to create the worst inflation Americans have ever experienced. Things of no value were said to be “not worth a Continental.” SOURCE: John McCusker, “How Much Is That in Real Money?” Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society , N.S.102 (1992): 297–359.

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FIGURE 8.2 The Trade Deficit with Great Britain The American trade deficit with Great Britain rose dramatically with the conclusion of the Revolution. SOURCE: Historical Statistics of the United States (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office,1976),1176.

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State Remedies States erected high tariffs to curb imports and protect infant industries but these were easily evaded by shippers. The most controversial economic remedies were designed to relieve debt burden. Farmers called for laws to require creditors to accept goods and commodities and had laws passed requiring them to accept nearly worthless state paper currency. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


A mocking pamphlet of 1787 pictured Daniel Shays and Job Shattuck, two leaders of Shays’ Rebellion. The artist gives them uniforms, a flag, and artillery, but the rebels were actually an unorganized group of farmers armed only with clubs and simple muskets. When the rebellion was crushed, Shattuck was wounded and jailed, and Shays, along with many others, left Massachusetts. He fled to a remote region of Vermont and then settled in New York. SOURCE: Anonymous, 18th century, “Daniel Shay (c. 1747-1825) and Job Shattuck (1725-1825?),” 1787, relief cut 9 x 12.9 cm (3-9/16 x 51/16”). Published in Bickerstaff’s Boston Almanack for 1787, third edition, Boston. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution/Art Resource, NY. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. 11

Movement Toward a New National Government Nationalists argued for a stronger central government to deal with the economic crisis of the 1780s. Invited by the Virginia legislature, representatives from five states met in Annapolis, calling for a convention to propose changes in the Articles of Confederation. Congress endorsed a convention for revising the Articles of Confederation.

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Part Four

The New Constitution

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The New Constitution Fifty-five delegates from twelve states assembled in Philadelphia in May 1787. The Constitution was framed by white men who represented America’s social and economic elite.

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The Constitutional Convention Conflicts arose between large and small states, and free and slave states. The Great Compromise provided a middle ground for agreement by: a bicameral legislature that had one house based on population and one representing all states equally; and a compromise on free-state and slave-state interests by agreeing to count five slaves as three freemen.

To insulate the election of the president from the popular vote, a electoral college was created to select a president.

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George Washington presides over a session of the Constitutional Convention meeting in Philadelphia’s State House (now known as Independence Hall) in an engraving of 1799.

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Ratifying the New Constitution Supporters of the Constitution called themselves Federalists. Anti-Federalist opponents feared the Constitution gave too much power to the central government and that a republic could not work well in a large nation. James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay published the influential The Federalist Papers that helped secure passage. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


A cartoon published in July 1788, when New York became the eleventh state to ratify the Constitution. After initially voting to reject, North Carolina soon reconsidered, but radical and still reluctant Rhode Island did not join the Union until 1790. SOURCE: The Federal Edifice “On the Erection of the Eleventh Pillar,” caricature from the “Massachusetts Centinal,” August 2, 1788. Neg. #33959. Collection of The New York Historical Society. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Ratifying the New Constitution Map: The Ratification of the Constitution, 1787–90

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MAP 8.1 The Ratification of the Constitution, 1787–90 The distribution of the vote for the ratification of the Constitution demonstrated its wide support in sections of the country linked to the commercial economy and its disapproval in more remote and backcountry sections. (Note that Maine remained a part of Massachusetts until admitted as a separate state in 1820.)

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The Bill of Rights Several states including Virginia, agreed to ratification only if a bill of rights would be added. The first ten amendments, better known as the Bill of Rights to the Constitution served to restrain the growth of governmental power over citizens.

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Part Five

The First Federal Administration © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


The Washington Presidency George Washington preferred to have a plain republican title and dressed in plain republican broadcloth. Congress established the Departments of States, Treasury, War, and Justice, the heads of which coalesced into the Cabinet.

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Two coins from the first decade of the federal republic illustrate political controversies of the period. The Washington cent was proposed by Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in 1792, in the hope of enhancing popular respect for the new government by having the president’s bust impressed on coins in the manner of European kings. But after long debate, Congress defeated the plan, the opponents claiming it smacked of monarchy. The Liberty coin, issued by the Mint of the United States in 1795, when under the authority of Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson, features Liberty wearing a liberty cap and bearing a marked resemblance to the French Revolutionary icon Marianne. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


An Active Federal Judiciary The Judiciary Act of 1789 created the federal court system. States maintained their individual bodies of law. Federal courts became the appeals bodies, establishing the federal system of judicial review of state legislation. Localists supported the Eleventh Amendment that prevented states from being sued by non-citizens.

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Hamilton’s Controversial Fiscal Program In 1790, Secretary of Treasury Alexander Hamilton submitted a series of financial proposals to address America’s economic problems including: a controversial credit program that passed when a compromise located the nation’s capital on the Potomac River creating a Bank of the United States that opponents considered an unconstitutional expansion of power a protective tariff to develop an industrial economy

The debate of Hamilton’s loose construction and Jefferson’s strict construction strained the Federalist coalition. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Alexander Hamilton (ca. 1804) by John Trumbull. Although Hamilton’s fiscal program was controversial, it restored the financial health of the United States.

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The Beginnings of Foreign Policy Foreign affairs further strained Federalist coalition. Americans initially welcomed the French Revolution, but when the Revolution turned violent and war broke out with Britain, public opinion divided. Though both sides advocated neutrality, Hamilton favored closer ties with Britain while Jefferson feared them. The “Citizen Genet” incident led Washington to issue a neutrality proclamation that outraged Jefferson’s supporters. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


The United States and the Indian Peoples Map: Spread of Settlement: The Backcountry Expands, 1770-90 A pressing “foreign” problem concerned Indians who refused to accept United States sovereignty over them. The Indian Intercourse Act made treaties the only legal way to obtain Indian lands.

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MAP 8.2 Spread of Settlement: The Backcountry Expands, 1770–90 From 1770 to 1790, American settlement moved across the Appalachians for the first time. The Ohio Valley became the focus of bitter warfare between Indians and settlers.

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Little Turtle, a war chief of the Miami tribe of the Ohio valley, led a large pan-Indian army to victory over the Americans in 1790 and 1791. After his forces were defeated at the Battle of Fallen Timbers in 1794, he became a friend of the United States. This lithograph is a copy of an oil portrait, which no longer survives, by the artist Gilbert Stuart. SOURCE: Little Turtle, or Mich-i-kin-i-qua, Miami War Chief, Conqueror of Harmar and St. Clair. Lithograph made from portrait painted in 1797 by Gilbert Stuart. Indiana Historical Society Library (negative no. C2584).

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Seeing History The Columbian Tragedy.

SOURCE: “The Columbian Tragedy” (1791), courtesy Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University.

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Spanish Florida and British Canada Spanish and British hostility threatened the status of the United States in the West. The Spanish closed the Mississippi River to American shipping, promoted immigration, and forged alliances with Indian tribes to resist American expansion. Britain granted greater autonomy to its North American colonies, strengthened Indian allies, and constructed a defensive buffer against Americans. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Domestic and International Crisis By 1794, the government faced a crisis over western policy. Western farmers were refusing to pay the whiskey tax. An army sent into western Pennsylvania ended the Whiskey Rebellion. General Anthony Wayne defeated the Ohio Indians, leading to the Treaty of Greenville in 1795 and the cession of huge amounts of land by the Ohio Indians. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


In this 1794 painting, President George Washington reviews some 13,000 troops at Fort Cumberland on the Potomac before dispatching them to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion. Washington’s mobilization of federal military power dramatically demonstrated the federal commitment to the preservation of the Union and the protection of the western boundary. SOURCE: Francis Kemmelmeyer, “General George Washington Reviewing the Western Army at Fort Cumberland the 18th of October 1794,” after 1794. Oil on paper backed with linen, 18 1/8 x 23 1/8. Courtesy of Winterthur Museum. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Jay’s and Pinckney’s Treaties Map: Spanish Claims to American Territory, 1783–95 The Jay Treaty resolved several key disputes between the United States and Britain. Opponents held up the treaty in the House until Pinckney’s Treaty with Spain granted them sovereignty in the West. The political battles over the Jay Treaty brought President Washington off his nonpartisan pedestal. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


MAP 8.3 Spanish Claims to American Territory, 1783–95 Before 1795, the Spanish claimed the American territory of the Old Southwest and barred Americans from access to the port of New Orleans, effectively closing the Mississippi River. This dispute was settled by Pinckney’s Treaty in 1795. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Washington’s Farewell Address In his farewell address, Washington summed up American foreign policy goals as: peace; commercial relations; friendship with all nations; and no entangling alliances.

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Part Six

Federalists and Democratic Republicans

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The Rise of Political Parties During the debate over Jay’s Treaty, shifting coalitions began to polarize into political factions. Hamilton’s supporters claimed the title “Federalist.” Thomas Jefferson’s supporters called themselves “Republicans.” These coalitions shaped the election of 1796, which John Adams narrowly won. Jefferson, the opposition’s candidate, became vice president.

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The Adams Presidency Relations with France deteriorated after Jay’s Treaty. When France began seizing American shipping, the nation was on the brink of war. The X, Y, Z Affair made Adams’s popularity soar. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


The Alien and Sedition Acts The Federalists pushed through the Alien and Sedition Acts that: severely limited freedoms of speech and of the press; and threatened the liberty of foreigners.

Republicans organized as an opposition party. Federalists saw opposition to the administration as opposition to the state and prosecuted leading Republican newspaper editors. Jefferson and Madison drafted the Virginia and Kentucky Resolves that threatened to nullify the Alien and Sedition Acts. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


In this contemporary cartoon, Congressional Pugilists, Congress Hall in Philadelphia, February 15, 1798, Roger Griswold, a Connecticut Federalist, uses his cane to attack Matthew Lyon, a Vermont Democratic Republican, who retaliates with fire tongs. SOURCE: Collection of The New York Historical Society, Neg. #33995.

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The Revolution of 1800 Map: The Election of 1800 In the election of 1800, the Federalists waged a defensive struggle calling for strong central government and good order. By controlling the South and the West, Jefferson won the election.

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MAP 8.4 The Election of 1800 In the presidential election of 1800, Democratic Republican victories in New York and the divided vote in Pennsylvania threw the election to Jefferson. The combination of the South and these crucial Middle States would keep the Democratic Republicans in control of the federal government for the next generation. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Democratic Political Culture The rise of partisan politics greatly increased popular participation. American politics became more competitive and democratic. Popular celebrations became common and suffrage increased.

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The presidential election of 1800 was the first to feature campaign advertising. “T. Jefferson, President of the United States of America; John Adams—no more,” reads the streamer on this election banner, illustrated with an American eagle and a portrait of Jefferson. This was mild rhetoric in a campaign characterized by wild charges. The Republicans labeled Adams a warmonger and a monarchist, while the Federalists denounced Jefferson as an atheist, Jacobin, and sexual libertine. .

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Part Seven

“The Rising Glory of America”

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The Liberty of the Press The Revolutionary years saw a tremendous increase in the number of newspapers. During the 1790s newspapers became media for partisan politics. In response to prosecutions under the Sedition Act, American newspapers helped to establish the principle of a free press.

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Books, Books, Books As a highly literate citizenry, Americans had a great appetite for books. Writers explored the political implications of independence or examined the new society including the emerging American character. Parson Weems’s Life of Washington created a unifying symbol for Americans. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Women on the Intellectual Scene Although women’s literacy rates were lower than that of men, a growing number of books were specifically directed toward women. Several authors urged that women in a republic should be more independent.

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Judith Sargent Murray, a portrait by John Singleton Copley, completed in 1771. Born into an elite merchant family in Gloucester, Massachusetts, she became a wife and mother but also a poet, essayist, playwright, novelist, and historian. In 1779 she published an essay on the equality of the sexes that distinguished her as the first avowed feminist in American history. Source: John Singleton Copley (17381815), “Portrait of Mrs. John Stevens (Judith Sargent, later Mrs. John Murray),” 1770-72. Commissioned on the occasion of her first marriage, at age eighteen. Oil on canvas, 50 x 40 in. Daniel J. Terra Art Acquisition Endowment Fund, 2000.6. © Terra Foundation for American Art, Chicago/Art Resource, New York. © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


Part Eight


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© 2009 Pearson Education, Inc.


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