Manifest Destiny

Manifest destiny was the 1ninth century UNITED STATE idea that the country had a divine ideal to expand also throughout and take over the continent.

You are watching: How did pro-annexation democrats engineer the annexation of texas in 1845?

Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe principle of manifest destiny, coined by a newspaper editor, justified American development throughout the continent.The expression “manifest destiny” suggested that growth across the Amerihave the right to continent was noticeable, inevitable, and a divine best of the United States.Manifest destiny was used by Democrats in the 1840s to justify the battle via Mexico.While many type of authors focus mainly on UNITED STATE expansionism once stating manifest destiny, others see a more comprehensive expression of belief in the country’s “mission” in the world.Key Termsexpansionism: A nation’s plan of expanding its area or economic influence.manifest destiny: The political doctrine or belief organized by the United States, especially throughout its growth, that the country had a distinct duty and divine appropriate to expand westward and gain control over the continent.exceptionalism: In the USA, the belief that the country does not conform to an established norm, and also instead has a special and magnificent function to play.

Amerideserve to Expansionism

Manifest destiny was the 1ninth century UNITED STATE belief that the country (and even more particularly, the white Anglo-Saxon race within it) was destined to expand throughout the continent. Democrats supplied the term in the 1840s to justify the war through Mexico. The principle was mostly denounced by Whigs and dropped into disusage after the mid-1ninth century. Advocates of manifest destiny thought that growth was not just wise, however that it was readily obvious (manifest) and also could not be prevented (destiny).

The idea of UNITED STATE expansionism is in fact much older. It is rooted in European nations’ early on emigration of the Americas, the establishment of the United States by white Anglo-Saxons from England also, and also the ongoing battles versus and also compelled removal of the American Indians aboriginal to the lands. In 1845, John L. O’Sullivan, a New York newspaper editor, introduced the idea of “manifest destiny” in the July/August problem of the USA Magazine and also Democratic Review, in an post titled, “Annexation.” The term described the exceptionally famous principle of the distinct duty of the United States in overtaking the continent—the divine best and also duty of white Americans to seize and also resolve the continent’s western territory, thus spanalysis Protestant, autonomous values.

Manifest Destiny and also Politics

In this climate of opinion, voters in 1844 elected right into the presidency James K. Polk, a slaveholder from Tennessee, bereason he vowed to annex Texas as a brand-new servant state, and also to take Oregon. “Manifest destiny” was a term Democrats mostly supplied to assistance the Polk Administration’s growth plans. The concept of development was likewise sustained by Whigs like Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, and also Abraham Lincoln, that wanted to expand the nation’s economic situation. John C. Calhoun was a significant Democrat who generally opposed his party on the issue, which dropped out of favor by 1860.

Manifest destiny was a general idea rather than a details policy. The term merged a belief in expansionism with various other well-known principles of the era, consisting of US exceptionalism and also Romantic nationalism. While many type of writers have concentrated on US expansionism once stating manifest destiny, others watch in the term a broader expression of a belief in the United States’ “mission” in the civilization, which has actually meant different things to different civilization over the years. For instance, the belief in an U.S. mission to promote and also defend democracy throughout the people, as expounded by Lincoln and Woodrow Wilchild, continues to affect US political ideology to today.

The angel Columbia was a picture generally provided at the time to personify the United States. Originating from the name of Christopher Columbus, it was initially provided for the 13 nests and also continued to be the dominant picture for the female personification of the United States till the Statue of Liberty displaced it in the 1920s. Throughout the era of manifest destiny, many kind of imeras were created of Columbia spanalysis democracy and also various other USA values throughout the western lands.


Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe Oregon Trail spanned roughly 2,000 miles from Missouri, Iowa, or Nebraska, ending in the Oregon Territory.The Oregon Trail’s initial course was scouted by hair traders and also trappers. Each year, as even more inhabitants brought wagon trains alengthy the trail, new cutoff paths were discovered that made the path shorter and safer.The Overland Stage Company offered the Overland also Trail to run mail and passengers to Salt Lake City, Utah.Both the Oregon and Overland Trail became obsolete once the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad made traveling west safer, easier, and also cheaper.The original wave of western settler-intruders along the Oregon and Overland Trails consisted of moderately flourishing, white, US-born farming families from the eastern.More current immigrants likewise migrated west, through the biggest numbers coming from Northern Europe and Canada. Several thousand African Americans additionally migrated west complying with the Civil War.Key TermsOregon Trail: A 2,000-mile (3,200 km), historic east-west wagon course that connected the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon and also areas in between.Overland also Trail: A stagecoach and wagon trail in the Amerideserve to west during the 1ninth century.Transcontinental Railroad: A continuous train line in the United States that traveled throughout the nation and also connected the Pacific shore to the Atlantic coastline.

Oregon Trail

The Oregon Trail was a 2,000-mile, historical east-west wagon course and emiapprove trail that associated the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon and locations in in between. The eastern component of the trail spanned component of the future state of Kansas and also almost all of what are currently the says of Nebraska and Wyoming. The western half of the trail spanned a lot of of then future says of Idaho and also Oregon.


The starts of the Oregon Trail were lhelp by fur trappers and traders from around 1811 to 1840; these beforehand trails were just passable on foot or by horseback. By 1836, when the first miprovide wagon train was arranged in Independence, Missouri, a wagon trail had actually been cleared to Fort Hall, Idaho. Wagon trails were cleared significantly additionally west, inevitably getting to the Willamette Valley in Oregon. Each year, as more settlers carried wagon trains along the trail, brand-new cutoff were uncovered that made the path shorter and safer. Imverified roadways, ferries, and also bridges also improved the pilgrimage. There were various offshoots in Missouri, Iowa, and also the Nebraska Territory; the converged along the reduced Platte River Valley close to Fort Kearny, Nebraska Territory and resulted in rich farmlands west of the Rocky Mountains.

From the at an early stage to mid-1830s, and particularly through the epochal years of 1846–1869, around 400,000 inhabitants, ranchers, farmers, miners, and also businessmen and also their households used the Oregon Trail and its many kind of offshoots. The eastern fifty percent of the trail was additionally used by travelers on the The golden state Trail (from 1843), Bozemale Trail (from 1863), and also Mormon Trail (from 1847), who offered many type of of the very same trails before turning off to their sepaprice desticountries. Use of the trail decreased as the first transcontinental railroad was completed in 1869, making the expedition west substantially much faster, cheaper, and safer. Today, contemporary highways such as Interstate 80 follow the very same course westward and also pass through communities initially establimelted to service the Oregon Trail.

Overland Trail

The Overland also Trail (likewise well-known as the Overland also Stage Line) was a stagecoach and wagon trail in the Amerideserve to west during the 1ninth century. While explorers and also trappers had supplied parts of the path given that the 1820s, the Overland Trail was a lot of heavily provided in the 1860s as an alternative course to the Oregon, The golden state, and Mormon Trails via main Wyoming. The Overland also Stage Company type of owned by Ben Holladay famously offered the Overland also Trail to run mail and also passengers to Salt Lake City, Utah, through stagecoaches in the beforehand 1860s. Starting from Atchiboy, Kansas, the trail descfinished right into Coloracarry out prior to looping back up to southern Wyoming and also rejoining the Oregon Trail at Fort Bridger. The stage line operated till 1869, when completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad removed the need for mail company using stagecoach.

Who Were the Settlers?

In the 1ninth century, as this particular day, relocating and founding a brand-new life took money. Since of the initial cost of replace, land, and offers, as well as months of preparing the soil, planting, and succeeding harvesting before any type of create was ready for industry, the original wave of western settler-invaders alengthy the Oregon Trail in the 1840s and 1850s included moderately prosperous, white, native-born farming family members from the eastern. More recent immigrants additionally moved west, through the largest numbers coming from Northern Europe and Canada. Germans, Scandinavians, and also Irish were among the most common. Contrasted with European immigrants, those from China were a lot much less numerous, yet still considerable.

In addition to a far-reaching European migration westward, several thousand also Afrideserve to Americans moved west following the Civil War, as much to escape the racism and violence of the Old South regarding find brand-new economic avenues. The latter were were known as exodusters, referencing the biblical trip from Egypt, because they fled the racism of the South, through many headed to Kansas from Kentucky, Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. By 1890, over 500,000 Afrideserve to Americans lived west of the Mississippi River.

The Western Frontier

As the nation expanded westward, settlers were urged by avenues to farm the land also or “make it rich” with livestock or gold.

Learning Objectives

Describe the conditions common in western frontier towns

Key Takeaways

Key PointsWhile the inspiration for personal profit conquered a lot of the activity westward, the federal government played a supporting duty in securing land and also maintaining law and order.The rigors of life in the West presented many type of obstacles to homesteaders, such as dry and barren land, droughts, insect swarms, shortperiods of materials, and lost plants.Although homestead farming was the major goal of most western inhabitants in the last half of the 19th century, a little minority sneed to make fortunes quickly through other implies, such as gold or cattle.The American West ended up being infamous for its difficult mining communities, such as Deadtimber, South Dakota and also Tombrock, Arizona, and also entrepreneurs in these and other communities erected stores and businesses to cater to the miners.Key TermsHomesteading: A way of living of self-sufficiency identified by subsistence agriculture and home conservation of foodstuffs; it may or may not likewise involve the small-range manufacturing of textiles, garments, and craftoccupational for household use or sale.

Moving West

The Federal Role

While the inspiration for exclusive profit dominated much of the motion westward, the federal government played a supporting role in securing land and keeping regulation and also order. Despite the Jeffersonian aversion to, and mistrust of, federal power, the federal government bore more heavily right into the West than any kind of various other region, fueled by the principles of manifest destiny. Because regional federal governments in western frontier towns were regularly missing or weak, westerners depended on the federal federal government to protect them and their civil liberties.

The federal government establiburned a sequence of actions regarded regulate over western lands. First, it sent surveyors and also explorers to map and also document the land also and ultimately acquire western area from other countries or Amerihave the right to Indian tribes by treaty or pressure. Next, it ordered federal troops to clear out and subdue any resistance from Amerideserve to Indians. It subsidized the construction of railroad lines to facilitate westward migration, and also finally, it establiburned administrations to control the land also (such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Land also Office, US Geological Survey, and also Foremainder Service). By the finish of the 1nine century, the federal government had amassed great size, power, and influence in nationwide affairs.


Transportation was a crucial problem in westward development. The Army (particularly the Military Corps of Engineers) was offered full responsibility for facilitating navigating on the rivers. The steamboat, initially used on the Ohio River in 1811, made inexpensive take a trip utilizing the river systems feasible. The Mississippi and also Missouri Rivers and also their tributaries were particularly used for this objective. Military expeditions up the Missouri River from 1818 to 1825 permitted designers to enhance the innovation. For instance, the Army’s steamwatercraft, the Western Engineer, of 1819 linked a very shpermit draft via among the earliest stern wheels. During this period, Colonel Henry Atkinboy occurred keelwatercrafts through hand-powered paddle wheels.

In addition to river travel, the Oregon and also Overland Trails enabled for boosted travel and migration to the West. The completion of the initially transcontinental railroad in 1869 dramatically adjusted the pace of take a trip in the country, as human being were able to finish in a week a route that had previously taken months.

Life in the West


The rigors of life in the West presented many kind of obstacles and also obstacles to homesteaders. The land was dry and barren, and also homesteaders lost plants to hail, droughts, insect swarms, and various other difficulties. Tright here were few products via which to develop, and beforehand homes were made of mud, which did not stand also approximately the facets. Money was a consistent problem, as the price of railroad freight was exorbitant, and banks were unforgiving of bad harvests. For women, life was especially difficult; farm wives worked at leastern 11 hrs a day on chores and had actually limited access to medical professionals or midwives. Still, many woguys were even more independent than their eastern counterparts and operated in partnership through their husbands.

As the railroad increased and better farm devices ended up being accessible, by the 1870s, large ranches started to succeed with economic situations of range. Yet little ranches still struggresulted in remain afloat, leading to increasing discontent among the farmers, that worked so hard for so little success.

Western Frontier Towns

Although homestead farming was the main goal of many western inhabitants in the latter half of the 1nine century, a small minority sought to make their fortunes quickly via other means. Specifically, gold (and subsequently silver and copper) prospecting attracted countless miners looking to obtain affluent quickly prior to returning East. In addition, ranchers capitalized on recently accessible railroad lines to relocate longhorn steers that inhabited southerly and also western Texas. This meat was highly sought after in eastern industries, and the demand also produced not only well-off ranchers but an era of cowboys and cattle drives that in many type of ways specifies exactly how we think of the West today. Although neither miners nor ranchers intfinished to remain permanently in the West, many type of people from both groups inevitably stayed and also settled there.

The Amerideserve to West ended up being infamous for its difficult mining towns. Deadhardwood, South Dakota, in the Black Hills, was an archetypal late gold town started in 1875. Although the town was far from any railroad, 20,000 people lived tbelow as of 1876. Tombrock, Arizona was a infamous mining tvery own that flourished longer than a lot of, from 1877 to 1929. Silver was uncovered tbelow in 1877, and also by 1881 the town had a population of over 10,000. Entrepreneurs in these and also other communities erected stores and also businesses to cater to the miners. Gambling and also prostitution were main to life in these western communities, and also only later―as the female populace boosted and reformers relocated in―did prostitution come to be rather much less prevalent.

The famous image of the Wild West portrayed in books, tv, and also film has been among violence and also mayhem. The entice of quick wide range via mining or driving livestock meant that a lot of the West indeed consisted of rough men living a turbulent life, although the violence was exaggerated and also glorified in the dime-keep novels of the day. The exploits of Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, and others created excellent stories, but the reality was that western violence was even more isolated than the stories might suggest. These clashes regularly developed as human being struggled for the scarce sources that can make or break their chance at wealth, or as they encountered the sudden wealth or poverty that prospecting provided.

See more: Calculate 15% Of 30 Is 25 - What Is 15% Off 30 Dollars

As rich guys brought their households west, the lawmuch less landscape gradually began to readjust. Abilene, Kansas is one example of a lawless tvery own, replete with prostitutes, gambling, and also various other vices, that transdeveloped as soon as middle-class womales arrived in the 1880s through their husbands. These womales began to organize churches, institutions, public clubs, and also various other neighborhood programs to promote family values.