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Unformatted text preview: Social and Economic Changes and Responses I. Changes A. Westward Expansion • The US expands rapidly • In 1803 w/ the LA purchase the size of the US doubles, despite being such a young country • After the Am Rev, white settlers started moving westward rapidly--Brit had tried to stop that w/ Proclamation line in 1763, but after all that was over in the 1780s, white settlers spread westward so fast that in the 1790s 2 states are added to the Union (Tennessee and Kentucky) • Everything was really different west of the MS River in the Great Plains o Weather was different, farming practices from the East didn't work the same way o There were no trees to help them build log cabins or fences o White settlement kind of stops a little ways west of the MS river • There were a few pockets of people in the plains, but people did hop over the plains and settle on the west coast in California • This means that you have settlers across the country o The people answer to Washington DC on the east, but they live across in California o There's no transcontinental railroad, and going by ship around S. Am was inefficient • Problem w/ Westward expansion: why are these people heading so far westward? Are they displeased w/ the way everyone is living in the eastern half of the US, and if they are displeased, will they be loyal citizens of the US, will they obey the government? o Culturally, will they be the same as everyone in the Eastern half? o Can the country hold together that way? • The people in the west do take government loyalties with them • Culturally the people remained similar • Baptists/Methodists travel very well because of simple church structure o Democratization • In the 19th century, the property qualification to vote began to end, so even poor white men could vote (gender and race qualifications remain, but class qualification does go away) • There's a growing sense that the "great men" aren't really all that great • Culture begins influencing the politics--voting opens up to poor white men, which reflects something w/ the larger culture o In the 18th/early 19th century, there was deferential politics, great men ran everything, and they were always elected to the position o 1820s: everything changing--styles, architecture--and there were still very wealthy men in the country (class division growing, so # of wealthy men growing, and so was # of poor families) but the willingness to look up to the super wealthy falls away o Architecture becomes more simplified o Aristocratic pretentions w/ the dress went down • It became hard to tell class divisions based on how people dressed...
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