Jacksonian Democracy, 1820-1840

Thesis: Historians have described the 1820s and 1830s as the "era of the common man." The election of Andrew Jackson was the first election in which a direct appeal to ordinary white male voters defined the political campaign. While the era did witness the elimination of property qualifications for voting, increasing disenfranchisement of black voters mitigated this democratic impulse. Jackson's anti-elite policies doomed the Bank of the United and proved disastrous for the Native American tribes of the Southwest. By the 1840s, regional differences on a series of economic and social issues were becoming increasing divisive. Internal improvement plans like the “American system” could only ease, rather than end division.

  1. A New National Politics
    1. Changes in the Democratic Republican Party
      1. Henry Clay and the American System
        • Internal Improvements
        • Protective Tariffs
        • Supported National Bank
      2. James Monroe and National Republicanism
        • The Missouri Compromise (1819)
        • The Monroe Doctrine
    2. The Jacksonian Challenge
      1. The Election of 1824 and the “Corrupt Bargain”
      2. The Adams Presidency and the Gathering Forces of Democracy
  2. Social and Political Bases of Jacksonian Democracy
    1. Settlers
    2. Free Labor
    3. Suffrage Reform
      1. End of Property Requirements
      2. Black Disenfranchisement
    4. Opposition to Special Privilege and Secret Societies
  3. Jacksonian Democracy
    1. The Election of 1828
    2. The Bank War
      1. Dismembering the Bank
      2. The Specie Act
  4. A Policy of Removing Indigenous People
    1. Jackson and Native Peoples
      1. Cherokee Indian Cases
        1. Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831)
        2. Worcester v. Georgia (1832)
    2. The Removal Act (1830)
    3. Treaty of New Echota (1836)
    4. Cherokee Removal: The Trail of Tears" (1838)
    5. History, Destiny, and the Disappearing Indian
  5. The Growth of Sectional Tension
    1. The Political Economy of Southern Discontent
    2. South Carolina’s Protest
    3. The Nullification Crisis