Context[ edit ] There was never a set of principles defining manifest destiny, therefore it was always a general idea rather than a specific policy made with a motto. Ill-defined but keenly felt, manifest destiny was an expression of conviction in the morality and value of expansionism that complemented other popular ideas of the era, including American exceptionalism and Romantic nationalism. Andrew Jacksonwho spoke of "extending the area of freedom", typified the conflation of America's potential greatness, the nation's budding sense of Romantic self-identity, and its expansion.
The story of the United States has always been one of westward expansion, beginning along the East Coast and continuing, often by leaps and bounds, until it reached the Pacific—what Theodore Roosevelt described as "the great leap Westward. Even before the American colonies won their independence from Britain in the Revolutionary War, settlers were migrating westward into what are now the states of Kentucky and Tennessee, as well as parts of the Ohio Valley and the Deep South.
The Monroe Doctrine, adopted inwas the closest America ever came to making Manifest Destiny official policy; it put European nations on notice that the U.
Westward the Course of Empire The debate over whether the U. When the Dred Scott case prevented Congress from passing laws prohibiting slavery and the Kansas-Nebraska act gave citizens of new states the right to decide for themselves whether their state would be free or slaveholding, a wave of settlers rushed to populate the Kansas-Nebraska Territory in order to make their position—pro- or anti-slavery—the dominant one when states were carved out of that territory.
The slavery debate intensified after the Republic of Texas was annexed and new lands acquired as a result of the Mexican War and an agreement with Britain that gave the U. The question was only settled by the American Civil War and the passage of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution prohibiting slavery.
When gold was discovered in California, acquired through the treaty that ended the war with Mexico inwaves of treasure seekers poured into the area. The California Gold Rush was a major factor in expansion west of the Mississippi. That westward expansion was greatly aided by the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad inand passage of the Homestead Act in That act provided free acre lots in the unsettled West to anyone who would file a claim, live on the land for five years and make improvements to it, including building a dwelling.
The acquisition of Hawaii and Alaska in the midth century assured westward expansion would continue into the 20th century. The great losers in this westward wave were the Native American tribes. Displaced as new settlers moved in, they lost their traditional way of life and were relegated to reservations.
However, westward expansion provided the United States with vast natural resources and ports along the Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf coasts for expanding trade, key elements in creating the superpower America is today.
It was the notion that Americans and the institutions of the U. Those beliefs had their origins in the Puritan settlements of New England and the idea that the New World was a new beginning, a chance to correct problems in European government and society—a chance to get things right. We have it in our power to begin the world over again.
The Whig Party stood in opposition, in part because Whigs feared a growing America would bring with it a spread of slavery.
In the case of the Oregon Territory of the Pacific Northwest, for example, Whigs hoped to see an independent republic friendly to the United States but not a part of it, much like the Republic of Texas but without slavery.
Democrats wanted that region, which was shared with Great Britain, to become part and parcel of the United States. Citizens of the Midwestern states were more inclined to active acquisition of territory, rather than relying on noncoercive persuasion.
As the century wore on, the South came to view Manifest Destiny as an opportunity to secure more territory for the creation of additional slaveholding states in Central America and the Caribbean.
It also nearly resulted in war with Great Britain over the Oregon Territory. Learn more about Manifest Destiny. This purchase more than doubled the area of the U.In a daybreak raid, the Pawnee and the Oto — possibly with the support of French traders — routed the Spanish, killing their commander, Don Pedro de Villasur, along with 35 soldiers and 10 Pueblo scouts.
The country began to expand into the western frontier. United States Expansion Map from the National Atlas of the United States Click picture for larger view.
Continued Expansion Interesting Facts about Westward Expansion and the Old West. History >> Westward Expansion When the pioneers first arrived at their new land, one of the first things they needed to do was build a house where the family could live.
Great Britain recognized the independence of the United States, ending its claim to the country. The treaty ended the American Revolutionary War, though military action had largely ended after the Franco-American victory at Yorktown on October 19, Pioneers explored and then settled the western United States, but displaced Native Americans in the homesteading process.
Tim and Moby look at the concept of Manifest Destiny. May 04, · An expansion at Newell Brands Inc.'s design center, shown here in Western Michigan University's Business Technology and Research Park, is expected to .