EARLY YEARS OF JACKSON’S PRESIDENCY• Appointments and rivalries• V.P. John C. Calhoun vs. Secretary of State, Martin van Buren • Scandal: Eaton Affair • Internal Improvements (Pork Barrel Projects) • Maysville Road Bill (Maysville Kentucky to Louisville Kentucky (home of Henry Clay) • Jackson vetoed the bill to popular support
Martin Van Buren John C. Calhoun President Andrew Jackson
NULLIFICATION• Calhoun’s theory: a state could nullify a federal law as unconstitutional • Only if the state held a state convention like the one the state’s used to ratify the Constitution • Law would be null only within the state’s own borders • Federal Government would then have to propose a Constitutional Amendment embodying the Federal law or Federal government had to abandon the state law.
WEBSTER-HAYNE DEBATE• Jackson ran against the “tariff of Abominations” • 1829 neither Jackson nor Congress reduced the tariff• 1829: Senator Samuel J. Foot (Connecticut) proposed that Federal government restrict land sales in the West.• Senator Thomas Hart Benton (Missouri) denounced the law as a northern effort to slow the settlement of land in the West so that the East might maintain its supply of cheap factory labor.• Senator Robert Hayne (S.C.) took Benton’s side • Promote an alliance between South and West to oppose the tariff• Senator Daniel Webster (Mass) took Foot’s side
WEBSTER-HAYNE DEBATE• Webster (regarded as nation’s best orator) • Denied that the East had shown a restrictive policy toward the West • Lured Hayne into defending “state’s rights” and “nullification”• Hayne • Defended Calhoun’s doctrine of nullification • Called attention to the Hartford Convention of 1814 in which the New England States threatened to secede . • Federal government could not be the judge of its own powers.• Webster • American Revolution fought by a united nation not 13 separate colonies • True sovereignty resided in the people as a whole for whom the state and federal government acted as agents in their respective spheres • Union would be a “rope of sand” • Practical outcome of nullification would be a civil war
JACKSON-CALHOUN RIFT• Jefferson Day Dinner: April 13, 1830 • Jackson rejects nullification with toast • “Our Union it must be preserved!” • Calhoun responds • “Our Union, next to our liberty most dear”• Calhoun Letter: May 30, 1830 • Jackson sees Calhoun’s letter of 1818 when Calhoun recommended disciplining Jackson for the unauthorized invasion of Spanish Florida• Cleansing the Cabinet: Summer 1830 • All Calhoun supporter removed and replaced with Jackson loyalists
JACKSON RUNS FOR RE-ELECTION• Van Buren not yet electable • New Yorker • Intrigues against the still popular Calhoun• Jackson supporters urge him to break his rule about one term• Jackson agrees• Calhoun breaks tie in Senate which votes against appointment of Van Buren as ambassador to England• “You have broken a minister and elected a Vice President” Benton to Calhoun.• Van Buren nominated to be Vice President in 1831 election.• Calhoun becomes leader of South Carolina “Nullificationists”
REFORMING THE TARIFF• Jackson realized that the tariff was bad for his popularity in the South• Argued for reform to lower the tariff on products unrelated to protection of American manufacturing • 1830 Congress lowered tariffs on coffee, tea, salt and molasses • “nothing but sugar plums to pacify the children”
THE SOUTH CAROLINA ORDINANCE• White South Carolinians lived in the only state where slaves were a majority of the population • Fear that the federal authority to impose tariffs might be used to abolish slavery• State elections of 1832, nullificationists took the initiative in organization and agitation • Unionist Party-little support but distinguished leaders• State convention overwhelmingly adopted an ordinance of nullification that repudiated the federal tariff acts of 1828 and 1832 • Forbade federal agents in Charleston to collect tariff duties after February 1, 1833 • Any citizen whose property was seized by federal authorities for failure to pay tariff duties could get a state order to recover twice the value • Robert Hayne elected governor and John C. Calhoun elected Senator (state legislature in S.C.—not the population—elected U.S. Senators • Calhoun resigned as Vice President to become a Senator from South Carolina.
JACKSON’S RESPONSE• South Carolina stood alone• Other southern states expressed sympathy but none endorsed nullification• Jackson: nullification is an act of treason • December 10 proclamation: nullification is an “impractical absurdity” • “The laws of the United States must be executed” • Nullification is disunion. “Disunion by armed force is treason” • Sent federal soldiers to South Carolina• Nullifiers mobilized South Carolina state militia• 1833 Jackson requested a “force bill” authorizing him to use the army to compel compliance with federal law• Supported new tariff bill in Congress that would reduce tariffs substantially within 2 years
CLAY’S COMPROMISE• In anticipation of a compromise, nullifiers postponed enforcement of the South Carolina Ordinance• February 13, 1833: Henry Clay of Kentucky urged his supporters to support plan to reduce the tariff gradually until 1843• March 1, 1833: Congress passed the tariff compromise and the Force Bill and Jackson signed both bills on March 2• Both sides were able to claim victory
JACKSON’S INDIAN POLICY• Economic growth in the 1820’s, 30’s and 40’s reinforced slavery and westward expansion• Jackson’s view of Native Americans • Barbarians who should be pushed out of the way • “”a just, human, and liberal policy toward Indians” required moving them to territory west of the Mississippi River, deserts that whites would never covet. • 1830 Indian Removal Act • Authorized the President to give Native Americans land west of the Mississippi River in exchange for the land they currently occupied in the West and the South
BLACK HAWK WAR OF 1832• Facing famine and hostile Sioux west of the Mississippi River, Sauk and Fox peoples under leadership of Chief Black Hawk sought to reoccupy land in Illinois that they had abandoned the previous year. • They wanted to raise a crop of corn• Illinois Militia chased the Fox and Sauk peoples into Wisconsin Territory, massacred women and children as they tried to escape across the Mississippi• Two native Kentuckians participated in the war: • Jefferson Davis • Abraham Lincoln
SEMINOLE PEOPLES• Seminole peoples fought protracted guerilla war in Everglades from 1835 to 1842 • Resistance among Seminoles waned after Osceola captured in 1842 • Never surrendered or signed a peace treaty
CHEROKEE PEOPLES• Cherokee peoples • Mostly located in the mountains of northern Georgia and western North Carolina on land guaranteed to them by a 1791 treaty with the U.S. government. • 1827 Cherokees adopted a constitution declaring that they were not subject to the laws or control of any other state or nation. • 1828 Georgia declared that the authority of state law would extend to Cherokees living within state boundaries after June 1, 1830 • 1829 discovery of gold in north Georgia • Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831) • Supreme Court has no jurisdiction because Cherokees were a domestic dependent nation not a foreign country • Cherokees have “an unquestionable right” to their lands “until title should be ceded to the United States”
CHEROKEE PEOPLES• Georgia law 1830: White is Cherokee territory must obtain licenses authorizing their residence there and must swear allegiance to the state. • Two New England missionaries refused. • Georgia sentenced missionaries to 4 years at hard labor • Worcester v. Georgia (1832) • Cherokee Nation a distinct political community • Georgia law had no force and is unconstitutional• Jackson refused to enforce Supreme Court decision • “John Marshall has made his decision; now let him enforce it! ... Build a fire under them. When it gets hot enough, theyll go.”• 1835 Cherokee Treaty: gave up about 100 million acres of land in exchange for tracts in Indian Territory west of Arkansas, 5 million dollars and expenses for transportation
TRAIL OF TEARS• 1838: Cherokees join other nations on an 800 mile journey. • Armed military from Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Alabama • 7,000 men • General Winfield Scott • 13,000 Cherokees in concentration camps in Cleveland, Tennessee • Disease, starvation and cold • Winter 1838, Red Clay Tennessee, Cherokees began 1,000 mile march without warm clothing and many without shoes • Not allowed to buy food • Charged a dollar a head to take a ferry across the Mississippi • Berry’s ferry charged .12 cents to ferry whites across the river • Cherokees had to wait until Berry had nothing better to do • White settlers sued federal government for $35 per burial of a Native American who died waiting to cross the river
THE BANK CONTROVERSY• Most controversial issue in the election of 1832 • Re-chartering the National Bank• Jackson: only hard currency (gold and silver) was only legitimate medium of exchange• National Bank • Nicholas Biddle • 29 branches • 464 state banks required to keep a reserve of gold and siler (specie) to back their paper currency • National Bank was collecting and dispuersing agent for federal government • 35 million in capital stock • U.S. government owned 1/5th • Revenues soared and National Bank became most powerful lending institution because its huge size enabled the National Bank to set the amount of credit available for the entire country
BANK OPPONENTS• State and local banks that had been forced by the specie policy to reduce their volume of paper money• Groups of debtors who suffered from the reduction because they were unable to obtain loans• Speculators (hedge fund investors we call them today)• States Rights groups• Wall Street financiers (capital investors) who resented power of the National Bank
ATTITUDES OF THE CITIZENS TOWARD THE NATIONAL BANK• Many Westerners and working men • Bank as a “monster” with too much power in one group • Controlled by a wealthy few
HOW WAS THE NATIONAL BANK A STABILIZING ENTITY?• By issuing paper money, the National Bank provided a stable, uniform currency• Provided a mechanism to control the rate of growth by regulating the amount of money in circulation • Enabled growth • Moderated the “boom” and “bust” cycle
JACKSON’S VIEW• Bankers are “vipers and thieves”• To Biddle, “I do not dislike your bank anymore than I dislike all banks”• 1829 Jackson’s 1st annual message • Questioned constitutionality of the bank • Bank failed to maintain a sound, uniform currency (all evidence to the contrary) • Proposed compromise • Bank owned by Federal government • Confined to government deposits • Profits payable to government • Authority to set up branches in states dependent on state wishes
FRIENDS OF THE NATIONAL BANK• Included Henry Clay and Daniel Webster (Senator and legal counsel to National Bank• National Republicans (new name of Federalist Party) with Clay as leader• Re-charter of national bank should occur before Presidential Election of 1832 • More supporters of National Bank in Congress than opponents of National Bank • If Jackson vetoed the bill, he would lose the election • Clay and Webster and supporters of National Bank underestimated both Jackson’s resolve and the suspicion with which common man viewed the National Bank
JACKSON’S RESPONSE• Congress passed the re-charter with majorities in both houses but without 2/3 support necessary to override a Presidential veto• Jackson to Van Buren, “The Bank is trying to kill me but I will kill it.”• July 10, 1832: Jackson vetoed the re-charter bill• “The opinion of the judges has no more authority over Congress than the opinion of Congress had over the judges and on that point the President is independent of both.”
INNOVATIONS IN ELECTION OF 1832• First 3rd Party: Anti-Masonic Party • Popular hostility toward the Masons • 1st party to hold a national convention and announce a party platform • William Wirt of Maryland for President• Democratic Party • Andrew Jackson for President • Many members of the Democratic party were angry at Jackson over nullification but supported him because of his opposition to the National Bank• National Republican Party (formerly the Federalist Party) • Henry Clay for President• Both the Democratic Party and the National Republican Party held nominating conventions and formed a platform following the lead of the Anti-Masonic Party
“OLD JACK, THE FAMOUS NEW ORLEANSMOUSER, CLEARING UNCLE SAMS BARN OF BANK AND CLAY RATS”
JACKSON’S WAR AGAINST THE BANK• At Jackson’s request Congress investigated the safety of government deposits in the National Bank and found that they were safe• Jackson ordered Secretary of the Treasury Louis McLane to remove all government deposits from the National Bank• Jackson fired McLane when he refused and replaced him with Attorney General Roger B. Taney (yes, Roger B. Taney of Dred Scott fame)• Taney deposited federal receipts in State Banks• 1833: 23 state banks “pet banks” held federal deposits• Senate voted to censure Jackson for transferring government deposits
BIDDLE REFUSES TO SURRENDER• “This worthy President thanks that because he has scalped Indians and imprisoned Judges he is to have his way with the Bank. He is mistaken!”• Ordered the B.U.S. to curtail loans and demanded redemption of state bank notes in gold and silver immediately.• Hoped to bring economy to a halt, create a sharp depression and demonstrate the importance of the National Bank.
UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES• Jackson’s Pet Banks no longer restrained by monetary policy of the National Bank which required specie to back up bank notes• New banks printed bank notes without regard for specie to lend money to land speculators in the West• Sale of public lands rose from 4 million acres in 1834 to 15 million acres in 1835 and 20 million acres in 1836.• States plunged into debt to finance roads and canals• 1837: State indebtedness was $170 million
THE ECONOMY FALLS INTO THE DITCH• 1836: Distribution Act • By 1835 Government debt had been paid off • Henry Clay against a government surplus and thought the surplus should be distributed to the states. • Hoped to remove an argument for cutting the tariff • 1838 Federal surplus came from bank notes issued to speculators • Westerners argued to lower surplus by lowering price of land • Southerners argued to lower surplus by lowering tariff• Jackson agreed to distribute most funds to states in proportion to the number of delegates in the House and Senate. Payments to be made quarterly in 1837
THE ECONOMY FALLS INTO THE DITCH• The Specie Circular • Government would accept only gold or silver coins in payment for land • Few settlers had gold or silver • Speculators had gold and silver • Settlers now at the mercy of speculators
THE ECONOMY FALLS INTO THE DITCH• State Banks had to pay Federal deposits to State governments which resulted in funds being withdrawn from the Pet Banks. • Pet banks had to call in loans immediately because they did not have the money to make the payments• Specie requirement further limited the money supply because Banks that had been issuing bank notes to speculators that were not backed up by specie now had to stop
THE ECONOMY FALLS INTO THE DITCH• Inflation in the early 1830’s • Before 1836 caused by increase of gold and silver payments to U.S. by England, France and Mexico for investment and purchase of American cotton and other products • British credits enabled Americans to import British products without exporting gold and silver • By 1836: tighter British economy caused decline in British investments and lowered British demand for U.S. cotton (which they could get more cheaply from India) • Settlers in Western territories planted cotton and increased the amount of American cotton on the market (thereby lowering the price)
FINANCIAL PANIC OF 1837• May 1837: New York banks suspended gold and silver payments on bank notes • Created fears of bankruptcy and set off runs on the banks • Banks around the country were overextended as they did not have enough cash on hand to cover depositor’s withdrawals • Brief recovery in 1838 when Britain had a bad wheat harvest and was forced to import American wheat • 1839 a bumper crop of American wheat and a collapse of cotton prices set off a depression that lasted until the mid 1840’s
MARTIN VAN BUREN AND THE NEW PARTY SYSTEM• The worst of the depression of 1837 occurred during Martin Van Buren’s presidency.• The Whig Coalition: united by opposition to Jackson • National Republicans • Anti-Masonic Party • Democratic Party who opposed Jackson’s policy on nullification and enforcement of the tariff. • Portrayed Jackson as King Andrew I and Jacksonian Democrats (who had taken over the Democratic Party) as Tories— supporters of a tyrannical king reminiscent of the Revolutionary War • Portrayed themselves as Whigs, reminiscent of the patriots of the Revolutionary War
WHIGS: ECONOMIC NATIONALISM AND PROTESTANT MORALITY• Economic Nationalists, supporters of the National Bank in the North and Mid Atlantic States• Large Southern Planters and slave owners in Southern states• Large Farmers who valued government funded improvements in the West• Evangelical Protestants: Presbyterians, Baptists and Congregationalists who promoted social reforms such as abolition and temperance (New England)
ELECTION OF 1836• Whig candidates • Daniel Webster (Massachusetts legislature) • Hugh Lawson White (anti-Jackson Democratic Party in Tennessee legislature) • William Henry Harrison of Indiana (Anti-Masonic convention in Harrisburg Pennsylvania • Whigs in the South argued that Van Buren was “soft” on slavery and southern voters could trust only another Southerner to enforce and protect slavery
EFFECT OF THE PANIC OF 1837• Fall 1837: 1/3 of workforce was unemployed• Remaining workers had wages cut by 30 to 50%• Prices on food and clothing rose• No government aid• Charities only• Winter of 1837 New York newspaper report: 200,000 people “in utter and hopeless distress with no means of surviving the winter but those provided by charity”
MARTIN VAN BUREN• Did not believe that government should assist farmers, businessmen, or provide relief for jobless or homeless.• Did believe in taking steps to keep the federal government healthy • Special Session of Congress: postpone the distribution of the surplus (which would soon disappear into a deficit) • Approved issue of Treasury Notes to cover immediate expenses • Independent Treasury Act of 1840 • Government keep its funds in its own vaults • Government should use only hard currency (specie) to do business
THE LOG CABIN AND HARD CIDER CAMPAIGN• Whigs: William Henry Harrison nominated • Military victory at Battle of Tippecanoe against the Shawnees in 1811 • Governor of the Indiana Territory • Congressman and Senator from Ohio• Whigs produced no campaign platform reasoning that taking a stand on anything would enable Democrats to rally in opposition • “Tippecanoe and Tyler too” campaign slogan • Baltimore Republican: “…upon the condition of his receiving a pension of $2,000 and a barrel of cider, General Harrison would no doubt consent to withdraw his pretensions and spend his days in a log cabin on the banks of the Ohio”• The Log Cabin became the theme of Harrison’s campaign • Harrison actually born to a prominent planter family in Virginia and had all the advantages of a planter • Van Buren was the son of a tavern owner who had pulled himself up through his own labors.
OBSERVATIONS ON JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY• Does Andrew Jackson’s persona and the era itself represent a transformative period in United States History? • By 1840 both political parties were organized down to the precinct • The proportion of white men who voted, tripled • 27% in 1824 to 78% in 1840 • Jackson came into power supporting the idea of returning to the Jeffersonian vision that government would play a limited role • Skepticism of the involvement between government and business
QUESTIONS ABOUT JACKSON’S VISION• What does free enterprise mean? • Is it limited to the farmer or planter or does it include the business entrepreneur or speculator?• Does government encouragement of free enterprise reaffirm the Federalist vision of “nationalist economics”?• What is the appropriate level of regulation of monetary policy?• How to balance the interests of states rights and the need for a union?
CRITICISMS OF JACKSON• The spoils system excludes the fittest from office• Vast difference between local issues and the national debates. National debates used to cover up local concerns and snares to catch voters.• Jackson as a frontier opportunist for whom democracy was a means for winning favor of the people (populism)• Greater participation in politics was essentially a northern development. White men in the South faced a significant property requirement (50 acres in North Carolina)• Jackson supported slavery, engaged in ethnic cleansing and perhaps enabled genocide against Native Americans• Laissez-fare policy became the justification for the growth of unregulated corporate powers that made Biddle’s National Bank seem puny by comparison.
A NOTE ABOUT IMAGES USED IN THIS PRESENTATION• All images except election result maps are from Harper’s Weekly American Political Prints 1766-1876• http://loc.harpweek.com/LCPoliticalCartoons/Index• Another great index for political cartoons and ephemera is the Library of Congress American Memory collection of broadsides and ephemera • http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/rbpehtml/• Stanford University Libraries and Academic Information Resources has many images and resources • http://www-sul.stanford.edu/index.html • http://www-sul.stanford.edu/depts/hasrg/abhist/ushist/colonial.html• All Maps of the Presidential elections are in the public domain offered by the Department of the Interior • http://nationalatlas.gov/printable/elections.html#list