Manifest destiny.

Essay by ghergherHigh School, 11th gradeB-, May 2003

download word file, 2 pages 3.0

In the 1800 - 1850's, the United States was at a pivotal state. We were still finding ourselves; it was the teenage years of our nation. A lot of changes were occurring and citizens were still unsure of how the United States would turn. Bad decisions were made; experiences teach us what to do and how not to do it. Ultimately we become torn on issues on basic issues not addressed in the Constitution. Events that will lead to a chaotic civil war, from one perspective, pull the two sides together but in the end self-interest rules.

National unity among the states was the goal, but many plans seemed to either backfire or get overcome by the people's drive toward war, for example President Polk's coercion for westward expansion (doc 3). He called it Manifest Destiny; our destiny to be a country reaching from one coast to the other. Many people recognized with Polk's vision and headed west toward adventure and opportunity.

The country seemed to be unified in this but that dream couldn't last forever. No one really considered what would happen when these territories would apply for statehood. "Free or slave?" was the question on everybody's mind. People once again got at each other's throats. Voting was another double edged issue. It attracted the nation together to vote, but the issues they were voting on were tearing it farther apart (Doc5).

There were factors that just flat out created differences and arguments. The cotton gin was invented by Eli Whitney and used to sort cotton (Doc 6). It created the southern economy and made business booming for the southern states, but created a need for slaves. Abolitionists of the north objected to slaves all together, this influx of slaves angered them even more and even more political war...