HistPaper21 - Evan Hoke History 201 U.S History to 1877...

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Evan Hoke History 201: U.S. History to 1877 Allen Dieterich-Ward October 31, 2007 America Afire America Afire by Bernard A. Weisberger is a well told tale of the hotly disputed and most important election in American history - the election of 1800. This election pitted Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, former friends and colleagues, president and vice president, against each other in a ferocious competition to see who would be the man to lead a stumbling young fawn of a nation further onto its feet towards stability, freedom, and prosperity for all of its citizens. Whoever was elected in the most hotly contested election in American history would face a dire task the outcome of which would leave a permanent impression on democracy forever. Prior to and during the Revolutionary War, there were strong feelings of fraternity and brotherhood possessed by the early American citizens, and factionalism was simply non-existent. These similar thoughts, philosophies, and ideologies were held by the colonists for the reasons of uniting them against a common enemy and serving to make the nations people strong enough to fight for and eventually declare their independence. Shortly after the Revolutionary War, however, the intense feeling of unity that is often referred to as the “Spirit of ‘76”, which allowed them to triumph over a powerful and controlling mother nation disappeared into thin air almost instantly. Tensions between competing classes and sectional interests deeply divided the nations populous into factions that no longer supported the common beliefs that once bonded
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them together ever so tightly. Such social unhappiness and rivalry gave birth to political factionalism which divided the nation further. These political factions – or parties – allowed people to address grievances and utilized them as a way to have their thoughts heard by the government in hopes of achieving a goal. At this time in America’s development, there were two major political factions with very different politics who were supported by people in dissimilar economic and social situations. The Federalist Party, whose strongest voice was Alexander Hamilton, had absolutely no
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HistPaper21 - Evan Hoke History 201 U.S History to 1877...

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