The relationship between westward expansion and slavery

Expansion and Slavery | CourseNotes

the relationship between westward expansion and slavery

Slavery, which had up to now received little public attention, began to assume Chief among these was the rise of a great cotton-growing industry in the South. No, rather it was the question of that institution's expansion, to the newly Opposition to slavery stemmed from the fear among northern whites. Westward Expansion Facts Dates Where Western Territories Of The it led to a confrontation between those who favored the expansion of slavery .. which led to an immediate break in the previously friendly relations between.

Another valuable enslaved person on the expedition was Sacagawea, a Shoshone woman sold into marriage to a French trader. Her knowledge and understanding of the environment helped the expedition navigate unfamiliar territory and avoid starvation during the harsh Rocky Mountain winter. Not only did she facilitate communication, but her presence in the exploring party no doubt helped Lewis and Clark avoid armed conflict with the Native peoples in the region, since Native women rarely accompanied Plains Indian war parties.

Perhaps no other region in the West illustrates the dichotomy between opportunity and bondage more than California. Thousands of people, enslaved and free, flooded the region, hoping to strike it rich.

Slaves working in California Gold Mines, But for some, the enticement of easy riches loosened those strictures. Perhaps because he sent Green along with his brother-in-law and a diverse group of men, Campbell might have thought Green would be less likely to escape. But to Green, freedom was more precious than gold. After a quarrel with some of the men in the group while passing through Texas, he escaped to Mexico, where slavery was illegal. If Green had made it to California, he would have encountered other enslaved people working in the gold mines and on ranches in the Sonoma Valley—as wellmigrants of all nationalities who had arrived to this region by The slave population included not just African Americans, but Native Americans as well.

The British, however, saw little value in another war with its former colonies in order to protect the interest of the Hudson Bay Company along the Pacific Coast. An agreement was reached that split the Oregon Territory along the 49th parallel excepting the southern portion of Vancouver Island in exchange for free navigation along the Columbia for the Hudson Bay Company.

Texas had won independence from Mexico inalthough Mexico refused to officially acknowledge the republic or its borders.

Upon learning Slidell was there to purchase more territory instead of compensate Mexico for Texas, the Mexican government refused to receive him. Slidell wrote to Polk, "We can never get along well with them, until we have given them a good drubbing. In Januaryto defend the disputed Texas border and put pressure on Mexican officials to work with Slidell—and perhaps to provoke the Mexicans into a military response—Polk ordered General Zachary Taylor with a small U.

the relationship between westward expansion and slavery

Army contingent to the north bank of the Rio Grande. Texas and the U. On April 25,a patrol under Captain Seth Thornton encountered a force of 2, Mexican soldiers; 11 Americans were killed and the rest captured. One wounded man was released by the Mexicans and reported news of the skirmish. Polk received word of the conflict a few days before he addressed Congress. The Thornton Affair, which "shed American blood upon American soil," provided a more solid footing for his declaration of war, though the veracity of the account is still questioned today.

Some opposed the war on grounds that war should not be used to expand the U. Some thought that Polk, a Southerner, wanted to expand slavery and strengthen the influence of slave owners in the federal government.

Despite the opposition by Whigs—Polk was a Democrat—the U. American success on the battlefield was swift. By August, General Stephen W. Kearny had captured New Mexico—there had been no opposition when he arrived in Santa Fe. Securing California would take longer, although on June 14,settlers in Alta California began the Big Bear Flag Revolt against the Mexican garrison in Sonoma, without knowing of the declaration of war.

He promised the U. Once in Mexico City, however, he reneged on the agreement and seized the presidency.

The Expansion of Slavery in the United States

Taylor pushed south into Monterrey, Mexico, in September. After a hard-won victory, Taylor negotiated the surrender of the city and agreed to an eight-week armistice, during which the Mexican troops would be allowed to go free.

In JanuarySanta Anna learned of the U. Santa Anna began the long march back to Mexico City. Read more about the Mexican American War. Although he and Sutter tried to keep it a secret, word got out—the first printed notice of the discovery was in the March 15,San Francisco newspaper The Californian. Not long after, gold was discovered in the Feather and Trinity Rivers, also located northeast of Sacramento. The first people to rush the gold fields were those already living in California, but as word slowly got out overland and via the port city of San Francisco, people from Oregon, Mexico, Chile, Peru, and Pacific Islands arrived to find their fortunes.

The Expansion of Slavery in the United States

Inthere was such a huge influx of gold-seekers—approximately 90,—that they would be referred to collectively as "forty-niners. It is estimated that by somepeople had streamed into California hoping to strike it rich. The port town of San Francisco went from a population of about 1, in to become the eighth largest city in the U. Read more about the California Gold Rush.

Klondike Gold Rush The Klondike gold rush consisted of the arrival of thousands of prospectors to the Klondike region of Canada as well as Alaska in search of gold. Overpeople set out on the year long journey to the Klondike, with less than one third ever finishing the arduous journey. Only a small percentage of the prospectors found gold, and the rush was soon over. Read more about the Klondike Gold Rush. Transcontinental Railroad The first concrete plan for a transcontinental railroad in the United States was presented to Congress by dry-goods merchant Asa Whitney in Whitney had ridden on newly opened railway lines in England and an — trip to China, which involved a transcontinental trip and the transport of the goods he had bought, further convinced him that the railroad was the future of transport.

The act, based on a bill proposed in that had been a victim of the political skirmishes over slavery, was considered a war measure that would strengthen the union between the eastern and western states. The Central Pacific started work in Sacramento, California, in January 8,but progress was slow due to the resource and labor shortage caused by the Civil War. The California Gold Rush and the building of the Transcontinental Railroad brought the first great waves of emigration from Asia to America.

Since construction began in earnest after the end of the war, most of the workers on the Union Pacific were Army veterans and Irish immigrants who had come to the U. When the railroad was completed on May 10,with the ceremonial driving of the last spike at Promontory Summit, Utah, it had already facilitated further population of the western states in concert with the Homestead Act.

the relationship between westward expansion and slavery

The railroads led to the decline and eventual end to the use of emigrant trails, wagon trains, and stagecoach lines, and a further constriction of the native population and their territories. Telegraph lines were also built along the railroad right of way as the track was laid, replacing the first single-line Transcontinental Telegraph with a multi-line telegraph. Homestead Act The Homestead Act of was intended to make lands opening up in the west available to a wide variety of settlers, not just those who could afford to buy land outright or buy land under the Preemption Act ofwhich established a lowered land price for squatters who had occupied the land for a minimum of 14 months.

In the s, Southerners had opposed three similar efforts to open the west out of fear that western lands would be established as free, non-slaveholding areas. Most of those objecting to such legislation left Congress when the Southern states seceded, allowing the Homestead Act to be passed during the American Civil War. The Homestead Act required settlers to complete three steps in order to obtain acre lots of surveyed government land.

First, an application for a land claim had to be filed, then the homesteader had to live on the land for the next five years and make improvements to it, including building a 12 by 14 shelter. Finally, after five years, the homesteader could file for patent deed of title by filing proof of residency and proof of improvements with the local land office, which would then send paperwork with a certificate of eligibility to the General Land Office in Washington, DC, for final approval.

The land was free except for a small registration fee. On New Years Eve, he met local Land Office officials and persuaded them to open early so he could file a land claim. By the end of the century, more than 80 million acres had been granted to oversuccessful homesteaders. In total, about 10 percent of the U. The Pony Express was a system of horse and riders set up in the mids to deliver mail and packages.

the relationship between westward expansion and slavery

It employed 80 deliverymen and between four and five hundred horses. Read more about Pony Express. Battle Of The Alamo: It resulted in Mexico taking control.

As the free society of the North and the slave society of the South spread westward, it seemed politically expedient to maintain a rough equality among the new states carved out of western territories. Inwhen Illinois was admitted to the Union, 10 states permitted slavery and 11 states prohibited it; but balance was restored after Alabama was admitted as a slave state. Population was growing faster in the North, which permitted Northern states to have a clear majority in the House of Representatives.

US: United States History - Slavery and Western Expansion

However, equality between the North and the South was maintained in the Senate. In Missouri, which had 10, slaves, applied to enter the Union. Northerners rallied to oppose Missouri's entry except as a free state, and a storm of protest swept the country. Missouri was admitted as a slave state at the same time Maine came in as a free state. In addition, Congress banned slavery from the territory acquired by the Louisiana Purchase north of Missouri's southern boundary.