Describe the concept of the Manifest Destiny and analyze its impact on the nineteenth-century South and West. How were the ideas of expansionists similar or different from the goals and experiences of ordinary migrants? What effect did the movement of thousands of individuals to the West and Southwest in the 1840’s and 1850’s have on indigenous peoples?
This writing assignment will attempt to describe the concept of Manifest Destiny and analyze its impact on the nineteenth-century of the South and West. I will also elaborate on how the ideas of the expansionists were similar and different from the goals and experiences of ordinary migrants. In closing, I will describe the effect the movement of thousands of individuals to the
Manifest Destiny is defined by Dictionary.com as “the belief or doctrine, held chiefly in the middle and part of the 19th century, that it was the destiny of the U.S. to expand its territory over the whole of North America and to extend and enhance its political, social, and economic influences (Random House Dictionary). It is also defined as “a policy of imperialistic expansion defended as necessary or benevolent and the United States had the right and duty to expand throughout the continent (The American Heritage, Dictionary of the English Language). According to Wikipedia, it is the historical belief that the United States was destined and seaboard to the Pacific Ocean (Wikipedia.com). In other words, the Manifest Destiny was a concept that influenced American policy in the 1800’s. It was the driving force behind the rapid expansion of America into the West from the East and was heavily promoted in newspapers, posters and through other media. It also led to the passage of the legislation such as Homestead Act that encouraged Westward colonization and territorial acquisition.
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