1. Describe the conditions of the western "borderlands" of the 1830s as well as the factors attracting American settlers.
The U.S expansionists were directing their ambitions to the North, West, and Southwest, but the conflicts between the U.S. and British North America came about over the border between them. In 1839, Canadian lumberjacks and the Maine militia began fighting over the boundary between Maine and New Brunswick. The fighting ended in the Webster-Ashburton Treaty, which gave over half of the disputed territory to the U.S., which established a definite northeastern boundary with Canada. Meanwhile, both the U.S. and Britain laid claims on the Oregon territory. The dispute ended in an agreement in which both nations had joint occupation of the land for 10 years. The agreement was renewed indefinitely in 1827. As Americans began settling in the Oregon Territory, they began demanding diplomatic and military action to insure total U.S. control of the land. Americans also began moving into a newly independent Mexico in 1821. 2. Explain the causes, events, and results of the Texas revolution.
During the early 1820’s, Mexican officials were encouraging settlers from the United States to settle in Texas. About 300 families from the U.S. had settled on the Austin Grant by 1823, and within a year the population grew to 2021. This constant migration created trouble between the Mexican government and the American colonists over the status of slavery and the authority of the Catholic Church. Also, all people who lived in Texas had to become Mexican citizens and adopt the Roman Catholic faith. In 1830, the Mexican Congress prohibited further American immigration and importation of slaves to Texas. The reason behind this was the Americans were the great majority and were failing to abide by the Mexican government rules which included emancipating their slaves and evading import duties on goods from the United States (and many more). The enforcement of the new law was useless, and the flow of settlers, slaves, and smuggled goods continued. In 1835, some Texans revolted against Mexico’s central government. 3. Discuss the importance of the Santa Fe and Oregon Trails in expanding American trade and settlement.
After New Mexico opened its trade to American merchants, a thriving commerce developed along the trial that ran from Missouri to Santa Fe. The traders traveled in large caravans because of hostile Indians they were forced to cross. Only one or two caravans would arrive in Santa Fe. These trips were extremely dangerous, but the profit which resulted from the exchange of textiles and other manufactured goods, were substantial enough to take the risk. The Santa Fe Trail was devastated when relations between the U.S. and Mexico went to shreds after the Texas Revolution. The Oregon Trail was the great overland route, which brought the wagon trains of American migrants to the west coast during the 1840s. This tail extended for over 2000 miles and it crossed the Rockies at South Pass. The journey from Missouri to the west coast took about 6 months. In 1843, a mass migration, mostly to the Oregon territory, started to grow. Within two years, about 5000 Americans were demanding the extension of full American sovereignty over the Oregon territory.
4. Trace the development of the Mormon Church and the westward trek of its members.
Mormons were a religious group of people who looked for relief from public hostility to their unorthodox beliefs and practices. They moved from New York to Ohio, Ohio to Missouri, and from Missouri to Illinois. The leader, Joseph Smith, was killed by an angry mob while being held in jail in Carthage, Illinois. His death confirmed that Mormons needed to move beyond the borders of the United States to establish themselves in the wilderness. Smith’s successor, Brigham Young, established a Mormon community in Utah which became known as one of the great success stories of western settlement. Young led...
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