NOTES - US History 1789-1853


I. U.S. History 1789-1853

A.      U.S. Presidents (1789-1853)

1.        “Federalist” Presidents (1789-1801)

a.        George Washington (1789-1797)

b.       John Adams (1797-1801)


2.        “Virginia Dynasty” Presidents (1801-1825)

a.        Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809)

b.       James Madison (1809-1817)

c.        James Monroe (1817-1825)


3.        “Age of Jackson” (1825-1841)

a.        John Quincy Adams (1825-1829)

b.       Andrew Jackson (1829-1837)

c.        Martin Van Buren (1837-1841)


4.        “Manifest Destiny” Presidents (1841-1853)

a.        William Henry Harrison (1841)

b.       John Tyler (1841-1845)

c.        James Polk (1845-1849)

d.       Zachary Taylor (1849-1850)

e.        Millard Fillmore (1850-1853)


B.       Federalist Era (1789-1801): Events from the Federalist Era

1.        President Washington created many precedents (traditions and examples) that were followed by

other Presidents:

a.        Washington retired as the President (in 1797) after serving 2 terms; every

President (except Franklin D. Roosevelt) followed the 2 term limit

1)   22nd Amendment (1951) made the 2 term limit for the President into law.

b.       U.S. Neutrality in War and “Isolationism”

1)  Washington’s Farewell Address” – When Washington retired he

      published an essay in which he gave advice to the U.S.

             a)  What did Washington’s Farewell Address say?:  The US should avoid

                  alliances with other nations because it could cause the US to fight in a

                                                             war that we don’t need to fight in.

  b)  Avoiding contact with foreign nations is called “isolationism” and

       this was US foreign policy until the end of World War II (1945).

2.        Creation of political parties

a.        Hamilton’s Financial Plan – a plan to pay the nation’s debts from the American Revolution led to the creation of political parties in the US.

1)       Alexander Hamilton was George Washington’s Secretary of the


2)       Hamilton created a plan to pay off the nation’s debts from the American Revolution

3)       What was Hamilton’s Plan?

a)       create The Bank of the United States (B.U.S.)

b)       raise taxes and sell bonds to raise money for the BUS

c)       the money from the taxes and the bonds would be used to pay the nation’s debts

4)       Thomas Jefferson believed Hamilton’s Plan was illegal because the Constitution did not say that the government could have a bank.

5)       The fight between Hamilton and Jefferson over the BUS led to the first political parties (see chart page 269)

6)       The Whiskey Rebellion (1794)

                a)   Taxes from Hamilton’s Plan led to rebellion in western


b)   Under Hamilton’s Financial Plan, farmers had to pay a tax   

       whiskey made from surplus corn crops.

c)    Farmers resisted paying the taxes and eventually formed an

       armed mob that attacked tax collectors.

d)   President Washington (in his uniform from the American

        Revolution!) led the army against the armed mob of farmers.

e)       Why is the Whiskey Rebellion important in American History? – Washington

        established the idea that the government would use force to

        maintain social order, and that changes in the law must be made

        under the Constitution not by an armed mob!



b.        Compromise of 1790

1)       An agreement between Alexander Hamilton,  James Madison, Thomas Jefferson and probably George Washington to allow Hamilton’s Financial Plan to be come law.

2)       What did the Compromise of 1790 say?:

a)       Hamilton’s Financial Plan would become law; including the Bank of the U.S.

a)       The U.S. capital would be moved to the south on land between Maryland and Virginia along the Potomac River.


3.        States’ Rights vs. Nationalism (Republicans v. Federalists)


states’ rights:                                                        nationalism:

- “strict interpretation” of the                                - “loose interpretation” of the

  Constitution – the gov’t only has                          Constitution – the Constitution

  the powers listed in the Constitution.                                  has “implied powers”; gov’t

                                                                               powers that are not listed.

- the state governments should                             - national government should be

          be more powerful than the national gov’t           more powerful than the states 

       - mostly southerners                                                - mostly northerners

       - mostly farmers                                                         - mostly business owners

       - opposed the BUS                                                   - supported the BUS                           


         LEADER:                                                            LEADER: 

         Thomas Jefferson (3rd President)                     Alexander Hamilton (Sec. Treasury)


         James Madison (4th President)                      George Washington (1st President)

                           John Calhoun (Sen. South Carolina)             John Adams (2nd President)

         Jefferson Davis (Sen. Mississippi)                Alexander Hamilton (Sec. Treasury)

                           Andrew Jackson (7th President)                    John Marshall (Chief Justice)

                                                                               Henry Clay (Sen. Kentucky)

                                                                               Daniel Webster (Sen. Massachusetts)



4.        “XYZ Affair” – French government officials (who President Adam’s called “Mr. X, Mr. Y and Mr. Z”) attempted to extort money from U.S. officials in France.

a.        France had a revolution in 1789, and their revolution started a war in Europe (eventually, Napoleon Bonaparte became the Emperor of France and he attempted to take over all of Europe!).

b.       France expected the U.S. to be an ally in their war, but we refused because of “Washington’s Farewell Address” … so they tried to extort money us to help them pay for their war!

c.        Americans who supported France (Thomas Jefferson did!) and French aliens in the U.S. began to write bad things in the newspapers about President Adams because he refused to support France as a result of the XYZ Affair.

d.       Alien and Sedition Acts – these laws said two thing:

1)       The President could punish anyone who wrote, or said, anything “false” about the government the U.S. government.

2)       The government could deport any alien whose home nation was at war with the U.S.

e.        Many people disliked the Alien and Sedition Acts because they believed the laws violated the 1st Amendment.


5.        Undeclared War with France (1798-1800) – During President Adam’s time in office, the XYZ Affair led to an undeclared war between the U.S. and France.

a.   U.S and French ships frequently fought each other on the Atlantic Ocean.

b.   The Undeclared War the France led to the creation of the U.S. Navy (1798)

c.    In 1800, an end to the war was negotiated between the U.S. and France; both countries didn’t have the

       money to keep fighting!

d.       Relations between the U.S. and France continued to be real pretty bad.


6.        Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions (1798) written by Thomas Jefferson and

                     James Madison to oppose the Alien and Sedition Acts

a.        What did the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions say?:  states can ignore

 (nullify) any law that is passed by Congress that they believe is illegal.


  C.  Virginia Dynasty (1801-1825)  - Events from the Virginia Dynasty


            1.  Manifest Destiny begins:

                           a.   What is Manifest Destiny? – The idea that the U.S. was meant to (it was our destiny

                                 to) expand our borders from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean.


                                             1)  Louisiana Purchase (1803) – President Jefferson purchased the land 

                                                   between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains from France (ruled

                                                   by Napoleon Bonaparte) for $15 million.

              a)  Importance of the Louisiana Purchase:

        (1)  The U.S. gained control of the Mississippi River.

        (2)  Doubled the size of the U.S.

                         2)  Florida (1819) U.S. bought Florida from Spain for $5 million.


                 2.  Marbury v. Madison (1803)

                              a.  Supreme Court case which established the precedent of judicial review; the Supreme

                                   Court can declare Presidential acts and laws passed by Congress to be 


                              b.  The Chief Justice for this case was John Marshall.   


                3.  War of 1812 (1812-1815)

                             a.   Cause of the War of 1812 – “impressments ”; the British were stopping American

                                   ships and forcing American sailors to serve in the British navy.

                             b.   The War:

                                            1)  James Madison was President during the War of 1812.

                                            2)  US invaded Canada but the invasion failed; we didn’t gain any territory but

                                                  we tried.

                                            3)   Britain invaded the US, attacked Washington, D.C., burned the White

                                                  House and the Capitol building.

                                            4)   The British attacked Baltimore during the War of 1812; during the battle

                                                  Francis Scott Key wrote the Star-Spangled Banner … which is our 

                                                  National Anthem.

                                            5)  General Andrew Jackson becomes an American hero at the Battle of New

                                                  Orleans; he defended New Orleans and defeated the British.

                             c.  Results of the War of 1812: 

                                            1)  Treaty of Ghent (1815) ended the war (no cares); no one gained any land.

                                            2)  The Industrial Revolution begins in the US; the US couldn’t import goods

                                                 during the war, so we had to make things ourselves in our own factories.

                                                 3)  Andrew Jackson became a BIG hero during the War of 1812; his actions

                                                  during the war helped him to become elected President in 1828.


               4.  Monroe Doctrine (1823)

                            a.   Many European colonies in the western hemisphere became independent countries

                                  during the Virginia Dynasty (beginning with Haiti in 1803).

                            b.   The US became worried that these new countries could be invaded by a European

                                  nation and that the US could be threatened by these invasions.

                            c.   President Monroe created the “Monroe Doctrine” to protect the US from attack.

                            d.   What did the Monroe Doctrine say?:  The US will attack any  nation that tries to

                                  create a colony in America or attempts to interfere with a nation in the western 


                            e.   Why is the Monroe Doctrine important?:  This was US foreign policy in the

                                  western hemisphere for 100 years … the US does not allow nations from other

                                  parts of the world to interfere with events in the western hemisphere.




5.  Sectionalism – in the early 1800’s the U.S. became divided into 3 sections. 


North (New England and Middle States)

                                                -wealthiest region

                                                -highest population; many immigrants

                                                -many businesses

                                                -supported the BUS

                                                -few slaves


                                                South (States south of Pennsylvania and the Ohio River)

                                                -many farms

                                                -many slaves (half the population in the south were slaves)

                                                -smallest population

                                                -opposed the BUS


                                                West (States bordering the Mississippi River)

                                                -many farms and businesses

                                                -many immigrants

                                                -growing population

                                                -need transportation and communication

                                                -need capital ($)




















 D.  Age of Jackson” – Andrew Jackson dominated politics in the US from the 1825 to the 1841.

                1.  Who was Andrew Jackson?

                            a.  Andrew Jackson was from Tennessee.

                            b.  Jackson was a farmer (he owned a plantation and slaves) and a lawyer.

                            c.  Jackson was a general in Indian Wars in Georgia and Florida and during the War of 1812.

                            d.  After the War of 1812, Jackson became a Senator  from Tennessee.

                            e.  In 1828, Andrew Jackson was elected the 7th President of the United States.

                            f.  Events from Jackson’s Presidency?

1)       Jackson and his supporters created the Democratic Party.

2)       Jackson and his supporters created “nominating conventions” to choose candidates for President (the Democrats and Republicans still do this today!).

3)       Jackson “killed” the BUS (it was not replaced until the creation of

                         the Federal Reserve in 1913).

4)       Indian Removal Act (1833) – Jackson ignored the Supreme Court and used the army to force Indians in Georgia and Florida to move to Oklahoma (also known as “The Trail of Tears”).

5)       Jackson created the “spoils system” – Jackson gave his supporters jobs in the government; President still do this today! 

6)       Force Bill (1833) – Jackson threatened to use the army to enforce federal (national) laws

a)   Southern states led by South Carolina threatened to nullify tariff laws passed by Congress and

                                                        supported by President Jackson

                                                   b)  Jackson threatened to use the army against any state that nullified a law passed by Congress

                                                        (remember “nullify”?; see the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions).


g.       Why is Andrew Jackson considered to be an important President>                                

                                            1)   Jackson made the President a more powerful part of the government

                                                        a)  He ignored the Supreme Court to follow his polices.

                                                        b)  He threatened to use the military against states ignoring national laws.



































  E.  Manifest Destiny (1841-1853)


               1.  Manifest Destiny started during the Virginia Dynasty when President Jefferson

                    acquired the Louisiana Purchase (1803). 


               2.  More Events from the Manifest Destiny time period:

                           a.  Annexation of Texas (1845)

         1)  Texas was part of Mexico for many years.

         2)   Many Americans, led by Stephen Austin, moved into Texas in

               the 1820’s.

                                              3)   “Texas War” (1835-36) The Americans in Texas fought a war with

                                                     Mexico to make Texas independent from Mexico.

                                                        a)  Americans led by Sam Houston fought against the

                                                              Mexican army and won.

                                                        b)  The most famous event from the war is the Battle of the Alamo.

                                                        c)  Texas became independent and was a country … called “The Lone

             Star Republic … from 1836 to 1845.

         4)  Texas became a U.S. state in 1845.

                3.  “54, 40 Or Fight” (1846) – US gains control of  Oregon Country

                           a.  US nearly went to war with Britain (again!) over Oregon and the border between the

                                US and Canada (Canada was still a British colony).

                           b.  US believed the border was at 54 degrees 40 minutes north latitude, and nearly invaded

                                Canada to retain that border,

                           c.  Both nations agreed to settle the issue at 49 degrees north latitude.

                           d.  49N is the border between the US and Canada today.

                           e.  Many Americans moved to Oregon on the Oregon Trail, probably the most famous trail

                                to the western states and the Pacific coast.



4.   Mexican War (1846-1848)

                           a.  CauseMexico became angry when the U.S. took control of Texas and a dispute

                                started over what the border was between the U.S. and Mexico.

                           b.  The War

         1)  James Polk was President.

                                              2)  The U.S. invaded Mexico and took over the country; U.S. troops occupied

                                                   Mexico City.

                                              3)  Two generals became heroes in the Mexican War: General Winfield Scott,

                                                   General Zachary Taylor (Zachary Taylor was elected the 12th President of

                                                    of the U.S. in 1848).

                           c. The Results of the Mexican War

                                              1)  Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo (1848) gave US control of the    

                                                   “Mexican Session”; present-day states of California, New

    Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, and Utah.

                                              2)  Because of the Mexican War, the western boundary of the U.S. became the

                                                    Pacific Ocean.

        d. President James Polk

          1)  Polk was important to Manifest Destiny because:

         a)  He supported adding Texas to the US.

         b)  He was President when we gain control of Oregon

         c)  He was President during the Mexican War

         d)  He was President when the US expanded to the Pacific Ocean!






US History (1800-1850)


Chapters 8 and 9







state’s rights

Conestoga Wagon



War Hawks




Chapter 10


Industrial Revolution



free enterprise


cotton gin


factory system

interchangeable parts




internal improvements

American System














US History  1800-1850


Chapter 11                                                      



spoils system                           


nominating convention  



Chapter 12                              


mountain men                          

Manifest Destiny                                              





Chapter 13


Clipper Ship


Morse Code

trade union


tenant farmer



slave code


Chapter 14






Underground Railroad











U.S. History (1789-1853)

Federalist Era (1789-1801)


Instructions:  Use class notes and the textbook to complete each question using a complete sentence.  Use the page numbers listed after each question to help you find the information in the book.  For some questions, your class notes may be the best source of information to answer the question.


  1. George Washington was our first President.  He served two terms from 1789 to 1797.  When Washington retired from the Presidency, he wrote an published an essay that we call “Washington’s Farewell Address”.  What did this essay say about alliances with other nations?  Why is this document important in American history?  266
  2. During Washington’s term as the President, the United States was heavily in debt.  What event caused the U.S. to be in debt during Washington’s time as our President?  259
  3. Who served as Washington’s Secretary of the treasury?  Describe the plan created by the

        Secretary of the Treasury to pay off the nation’s debts.  262

  1. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison opposed the plan created by the Secretary of the Treasury

        to pay the nation’s debts.  Why did Jefferson and Madison oppose the plan?  262

  1. What was the cause of the Whiskey Rebellion in 1794?  How did President Washington handle the Whiskey Rebellion?

Why is the Whiskey Rebellion considered to be an important event in American History? 263-264

  1. Use the chart on page 269 in the textbook to answer the following question:

How did Hamilton and Jefferson differ in the way they interpreted (read) the U.S. Constitution?

  1. How did the argument between Hamilton and Jefferson influence politics in U.S. history?  269
  2. What effect did the Compromise of 1790 have on Hamilton’s Financial Plan?  What did the Compromise of 1790 say? 
  3. Make a chart listing the differences between Federalists and Democratic-Republicans  269
  4. What was the XYZ Affair?  How did the XYZ Affair effect relations between the U.S. and France between 1798 and 1800?
  5. What did the Alien and Sedition Acts say?  Who was President when their laws were passed? 271
  6. Why did many Americans dislike the Alien and Sedition Acts? 271
  7. Who wrote the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions?  When were these documents written?  What did they say?  Define the term nullify.  271



US History (1789-1853)

Virginia Dynasty (1801-1825)


Instructions:  Use class notes and the textbook to complete each question using a complete sentence.  Use the page numbers listed after each question to help you find the information in the book.  For some questions, your class notes may be the best source of information to answer the questions.


  1. What is Manifest Destiny?
  2. Who was President when the U.S. purchased Louisiana?
  3. Why is the Louisiana Purchase an important event in American history?
  4. When did the War of 1812 begin and end?
  5. What was the cause of the War of 1812?  Which nation did the US fight in the War of 1812?  What is impressments?
  6. Who was President during the War of 1812?
  7. How did the War of 1812 affect the following people and places?:
    1. The White House and the Capitol building
    2. Andrew Jackson
    3. Francis Scott Key
    4. U.S. factories
  8. Did the U.S. gain any territory in the War of 1812?
  9. What did the Monroe Doctrine say?  Why is the Monroe Doctrine important in American history?
  10. What is sectionalism?  List the 3 regions the U.S. was divided into in the early 1800’s.  Which region do you live in?  322





US History (1789-1853)

Age of Jackson (1825-1841)


Instructions:  Use class notes and the textbook to complete each question using a complete sentence.  Use the page numbers listed after each question to help you find the information in the book.  For some questions, your class notes may be the best source of information to answer the questions.


1.  The American System was a program of “internal improvements” proposed by Henry Clay. 

     What are internal improvements?  List the other ideas that were a part of Henry Clay’s American   

     System.  324

2.  Why did many Southerners oppose the American System? 324

3.  Which battle from the War of 1812 made General Andrew Jackson an American hero?  300

4.  Answer the following questions about President Jackson:

    1. Jackson’s supporters created a new political party.  Give the name of Jackson’s party
    2. Why is Jackson called “Old Hickory”?  335
    3. Jackson created the “spoils system”.  What is the spoils system? 337
    4. Jackson’s supporters created nominating conventions.  What is the purpose of a nominating convention?  Do we still have nominating conventions today?  337
    5. In 1832, Congress passed a new tariff bill.  The state of South Carolina passed the Nullification Act, declaring that the tariff law was illegal, and refused to obey the law.  What did President Jackson threaten to do if South Carolina nullified the tariff laws passed by Congress?  338-39
    6. What did the Indian Removal Act say?  How did President Jackson react when the Supreme Court ruled that the Cherokee could not be forced up give up their land in Georgia?  342-43



US History (1789-1853)

Manifest Destiny (1841-1853)


Instructions:  Use class notes and the textbook to complete each question using a complete sentence.  Use the page numbers listed after each question to help you find the information in the book.  For some questions, your class notes may be the best source of information to answer the questions.


  1. Which country owned Texas before 1835?
  2. Give the importance of the following people in Texas history:
    1. Stephen Austin
    2. Sam Houston
  3. Texas was the “Lone Star Republic” from 1836 to 1845.  What was the “Lone Star Republic”?
  4. In which year did Texas become a US state?
  5. Which US territory is associated with the saying “54, 40 or Fight!”?
  6. Which nation did the US nearly go to war with in order to settle a border dispute between Oregon and Canada?
  7. Which line of latitude creates the border between the US and Canada today?
  8. What caused the war between the US and Mexico in 1846?
  9. Who was President during the Mexican War?
  10. As a result of the Mexican War, the US gained control of the Mexican Session.  Which present-day states were part of the Mexican Session?
  11. What did Winfield Scott and Zachary Taylor do in the Mexican War?
  12. Why is President James Polk considered to be an important President during the Manifest

       Destiny time period in American history?