C17 - Manifest Destiny and Its Legacy 1841-1848 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in C17 - Manifest Destiny and Its Legacy 1841-1848 Deck (34):

"spot" resolutions

Whig Congressman from IL, Abraham Lincoln, insisted on getting information as to the precise "spot" on American soil where American blood had been shed, during the altercation where Mexico fired on American soldiers. American soldiers were in disputed territory, so Lincoln was making the point that American blood had not been shed on American soil.


Nicholas P. Trist

Diplomat sent to Mexico by President Polk to secure an agreement re: Texas and California.


Zachary Taylor

Asked by President Polk to lead troops to the area in Texas just north of the Rio Grande River. In May 1846, Mexican troops fired on Americans - 16 were killed. Polk declared war.

In 1847, his troops won a battle and "Old Zack" became called "Hero of Buena Vista"


joint resolution

Tactic used by John Tyler to get his legislation (which added Texas as a state) through Congress in early 1845.

Rather than ask Congress to vote on a treaty which requires 2/3 of votes to win, he used the joint resolution which only requires 51% to pass.

TX became a state in 1845.


"all of Mexico"

Some in Congress (expansionist Democrats) called for the US to take all of Mexico, not just the territory that was agreed upon in the Treaty (the land that became America's included Texas and California).


Liberty party

Anti-slavery party, a 3rd party that got enough votes in the Election of 1844 that it probably caused Henry Clay, the Whig candidate to lose the election.


John Slidell

Diplomat sent to Mexico by President Polk to negotiate a purchase price for US to buy California.

He wasn't successful.


Wilmot Proviso

David Wilmot's proposal that no land gotten from mexico in the Mexico war would be allowed to have slavery. Passed by many state legislatures in Free States.


Hudson's Bay Company

British company that traded for furs in the Oregon region.


Webster-Ashburton Treaty

1842 treaty. Settled boundaries between Britain and the US in the Maine/Southern Canada region.


James K. Polk

Became President in 1845. Democrat whose priorities included:
- Annexation of TX - making it a state
- Securing Oregon Country
- Lowering Tariffs
- Independent Federal Bank


Tariff of 1842

John Tyler finally signed this bill. He did not like tariffs, but recognized the need for new revenue.

This was a watered down version of the Tariff bill that the Whig party leaders really wanted.


Manifest Destiny

Idea that grew through the 1840s and 1850s, that God had "manifestly" destined America to spread its democratic ideals throughout North American continent and also South America. This ideas combined land greed and ideals: "empire" and "liberty".


Stephen W. Kearny

1846: American General who was sent to conquer California from Mexico.


Aroostook War

Tensions arose between Lumberjacks who had moved into disputed territory in the area of Maine and Southern Canada/St. Lawrence Seaway, land that was disputed between Britain and US.

US-British Treaty ended this uprising in 1842


Robert Gray



David Wilmot

Representative from PA who introduced an amendment in 1846 banning slavery in any territory gotten from Mexico during the Mexico war. Passed by the House, but could not pass the Senate because of resistance from Southern Slave states.


Winfield Scott

1847: American General who pushed into Mexico. He and his troops battled all the way to Mexico City, a brilliant military campaign.


Fiscal Bank

New Federal bank that was backed by the Whig party, but vetoed by John Tyler.


"conscience" Whigs

people in the Whig party who disagreed with adding TX to the US because they thought it would expand slavery.


Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo

1848: Signed by US diplomat Nicholas P. Trist - agreement with Mexico where US secured all of Texas, and California.


John C. Fremont

Explorer who worked with locals and with a few dozen well-armed men overthrew Mexican rule in 1846 in California.


Bear Flag Revolt

During the Bear Flag Revolt, from June to July 1846, a small group of American settlers in California rebelled against the Mexican government and proclaimed California an independent republic. The republic was short-lived because soon after the Bear Flag was raised, the U.S. military began occupying California, which went on to join the union in 1850. The Bear Flag became the official state flag in 1911.


John Tyler

Ran as William Harrison's running mate (VP) as "Tyler Too".

Harrison died of pneumonia in 1841 after 4 weeks in office. Tyler became president.

Harrison and Tyler ran as Whig party candidates, but Tyler had more Democrat leanings.

Sometimes he bent to other strong Whigs: Henry Clay and Daniel Webster.

Sometimes he disappointed the Whig party and vetoed their favored legislation.

The Whig party was strongly nationalistic: pro-bank, pro-tariff and pro-internal improvements. John Tyler didn't agree.

He vetoed The Whig party's favored Bank bill.

Tyler was expelled from the Whig party and most of his Cabinet resigned.



American steamer/boat that was carrying supplies across the Niagara River in NY. British ships set it on fire in 1837 - 1 American was killed. This was an example of the bad relationship between America and Britain at the time.



American ship that was taken by 130 Virginia slaves. Britain offered the slaves asylum, which angered the US.


Lord Ashburton

British diplomat sent to the US due to the Aroostook War near Maine. A treaty was approved, worked out between Lord Ashburton and Daniel Webster.


Walker Tariff

1846: passed Congress. Lowered tariffs.

This was one of President Polk's priorities - to lower tariffs.

This was followed by good economic times, sparked by heavy imports.


Henry Clay

Whig leader who was at odds with John Tyler about legislation that Tyler vetoed.


Daniel Webster

Whig leader and secretary of state under John Tyler.


Election of 1844

The very popular Henry Clay was Whig candidate

Democrats chose James K. Polk from TN, a "dark horse" or surprise candidate. He believed in expansion (adding TX to the US).

Idea of Manifest Destiny influenced this election. Democrats slogans: "Re-annexation of Texas" and "Reoccupation of Oregon".

The election was very close. Clay would have won if he'd gotten 5000 votes in NY. The Liberty party (3rd party) took those votes that probably would have gone to Clay.


Abraham Lincoln

Representative to the US House from IL. Introduced "spot" resolutions. A Whig.


Texas: Lone Star State

Texas was an independent country for 9 years from 1836 (won the war with Mexico) to 1845 (joined the US)


Oregon Territory

Region West of the Rockies, South to California and North to Southern Alaska. After Spain and France had given up their claims to this region in various treaties, US and Britain remained as the 2 countries claiming parts of Oregon Country.

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