1801 - 1809


1809 - 1817


1817 - 1825

Quincy Adams

1825 - 1829


1829 - 1837

Before becoming President, Jackson’s national reputation stemmed mainly from his military exploits (ex. victory over the Creeks, New Orleans). In 1824, he ran for President but lost in the House of Representatives to Quincy Adams due to what he called the “corrupt bargain.” During Adams’ presidency, his supporters began calling themselves the Democratic party and associating Jackson with the common man. His campaigns greatly shaped modern day politics. In 1828, he led a decisive victory against Adams. Jackson believed that he had to use presidential power in the name of the people. He denounced the bank, criticized the nullification controversy, forced Indian removal, and proposed that the national government should not infringe on states’ rights (which according to him included the job of implementing internal improvements). During his presidency, the Whig party also formed, a group of people who disapproved of his policies. After serving for two terms, Jackson’s reign ended in 1832 when Van Buren was elected.

Van Buren

1837 - 1841

Jackson’s Democratic successor who was elected in 1836 and served for one term. His term as president was marked by a depression caused by the Panic of 1837. He passed the Independent Treasury Act during his term which allowed the government to establish subtreasuries in various cities and keep its funds in its own safety vaults.


March 1841 - April 1841

died after a month in office


April 1841 - 1845

Was the first vice president to succeed to the presidency after Harrison died of pneumonia in 1840. President Tyler proved to be not much of a Whig. He vetoed the Whigs’ national bank bills and other legislation, and favored southern and expansionist Democrats during the balance of his term. He was eventually expelled out of the Whig Party. THIS WAS THE SWITCH PARTY GUY! WHIG-> DEMOCRAT


1845 - 1849


1849 - 1850

died of heatstroke


1850 - 1853


1853 - 1857


1857 - 1861


1861 - April 1865


April 1865 - 1869


1869 - 1877


1877 - 1881


March 1881 - September 1881


September 1881 - 1885

Compromises, Ordinances, Treaties and Acts

Articles of Confederation ratified


Bill of Rights created


Jay's Treaty


Terms: British would withdraw from forts in the Northwest Territory, British would compensate American ship owners, US gave most favored nation trading status to Britain, US would repay prewar private debts to GB

Alien and Sedition Acts


Occupation Treaty of 1827


negotiation between US and Britain that renewed joint occupation of Oregon.

Tariff of Abominations


Passed by Congress right before Jackson’s victory in the election. The goal of the tariff was to protect the American infant industries from the competitive European import goods. It was extremely popular in the north but despised in the South, and it would lead to the nullification crisis. In 1832, it was modified.

Maysville Vote Bill


A bill that if passed would have authorized the use of federal funds to build a road in Henry Clay’s Kentucky; however, Jackson believed that the national government should not infringe on states’ rights--which he believed included internal improvements. Therefore, Jackson vetoed the bill.

Ordinance of Nullification


Adopted in 1832 by South Carolina after Congress’ modification of the tariff of 1828. It declared that the offending tariffs of 1828 and 1832 were null and void in that state. It was a direct attack on the concepts of federal unity and majority rule.

Force Bill of 1833


A bill enforced by Jackson through Congress to use whatever force necessary to enforce Federal tariffs and new tariff revisions. It was intended to suppress South Carolina’s refusal to collect tariffs during the nullification crisis. South Carolina ended up repealing its nullification but saved face by nullifying the Force Bill--which was ignored by Jackson.

Trail of Tears

1837 - 1838

What the Cherokee called their forced relocation to the West in 1837-1838. Many died on the journey and their property seized by soldiers in the US Army. Many southern and some northwestern tribes between 1821 and 1840 suffered a similar fate. Indian removal left the eastern US open for the enormous economic expansion during the later years.

Gadsden Purchase


a strip of southern Arizona and New Mexico that the US purchased in 1853 from Mexico for $10 million. The purchase was part of the south’s effort to secure a southern route through Santa Fe for the transcontinental railroad.

Homestead Act


offered 160 acres of government land free to citizens or future citizens over 21. People would live on the property, improve it, and pay a small registration fee. This was a way of encouraging westward immigration.

Battles and Wars

Revolutionary War

1775 - 1783

Treaty of Paris with Great Britain ends the war and officially gives the US independence.

The Alamo


a battle in the Texas war for independence from Mexico on March 6, 1836. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna defeated the Texas forces. “Remember the Alamo” became a slogan of the Texas army.

San Jacinto


the battle in 1836 in which Texas won its independence from Mexico. It was an easy victory since Texans overcame Santa Anna’s army while they were taking siestas.

Bull Run

July 21 1861

The first major battle of the civil war. Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard triumphed over his West Point classmate Union General Irwin McDowell.


Alexander Hamilton

January 11, 1755 - July 12, 1804

Some historians say he was born in 1757

Zebulon Pike

1805 - 1807

n 1805-1806 he explored the sources of the Mississippi River as far north as leech lake in Minnesota. He also explored 1806-1807 west across the Great Plains, south along the Rockies (Pikes Peak), into Mexico, back north through Texas. As a result they built forts all along the Mississippi.

Daniel Webster


A prominent Whig from the northeast that counter spoke against Robert Hayne’s speech defining nullification in the name of liberty by stating that the federal government was far more than an agent of the states. He stated that it was “made for the people, made by the people, and answerable to the people.” No state legislature, to him, could ever be sovereign over the people. “Liberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable!” (Webster-Hayne Debate). He also favored the national bank and pushed Biddle to ask for a recharter in 1832.

Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna


Mexican dictator and general. In 1835 he marched north with 6,000 conscripts to crush rebellion in Texas (part of Mexico). He won early battles at the Alamo and Goliad but was easily defeated at San Jacinto where Texans overcame Santa Anna’s army while they were taking siestas.

Dorothea Diz

1840 - 1850

a former teacher from Massachusetts who was horrified to find mentally ill persons locked up with criminals in unsanitary cells. She dedicated the rest of her life to improving conditions for emotionally disturbed persons. In the 1840s, her travels and reports caused one state legislature after another to build new mental hospitals or improve existing institutions.

Horace Mann

1840 - 1850

Was the leading advocate of the common (public) school movement. As secretary of the newly founded Massachusetts Board of Education, Mann worked for improved schools, compulsory attendance for all children, a longer school year, and increased teacher preparation. In the 1840s, the movement for tax-supported schools spread rapidly to other states. Reforms began under Jacksonian era and were influenced by the Second Great Awakening. Schools initially focused on teaching principles of morality and establishing social standards.

Brigham Young


Became leader of the Mormons after Joseph Smith’s death and led the Mormons to the far western frontier, where they established the New Zion (as they called their religions community) on the banks of the Great Salt Lake in Utah.

General Zachary Taylor


a US general at the time of the annexation of Texas. Following Polk’s orders in October of 1845 he brought 3,500 American troops to the Nueces River and then to the Rio Grande immediately before the war with Mexico.

Henry David Thoreau


A close friend of Emerson that also incorporated transcendental ideals into his works. In 1845, he went to live in a small hut by Walden Pond, near Concord. There he contemplated the “essential facts of life”--to discover who he was and how to live well. Due to his protest against slavery and the Mexican war, Thoreau was sent to jail for a period of time. There, he wrote “On Civil Disobedience” and Walden.

John Humphrey Noyes


Founder of the utopian community Oneida. Was converted and inspired by one of Charles Finney’s sermons during the Second Great Awakening and believed that the act of final conversion led to absolute perfection and complete release from sin. He argued all men and women belonged equally to each other and that familial relationships were key.

Susan B Anthony

1850 - 1860

Throughout the 1850s, led by Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, women continued to meet in annual conventions, working by resolution, persuasion, and petition campaign to achieve equal political, legal, and property rights with men.




The first third party in American political life and the first to hold a nominating convention. The anti Masonic movement, which began in upstate New York, expressed popular resentments against the elite Masonic order (Jackson was a member) and other secret societies. They were prominent in the election of 1832.

Societies, and Conventions

Constitutional Convention


First Constitutional Congress


American Colonization Society


The idea of transporting freed slaves to an African colony originated in 1817 with the founding of the American Colonization Society. The idea appealed to antislavery reformers with moderate views and especially to politicians. Colonization, while hopeful, never proved to be a practical option.

Convention of 1818


negotiations between the US and Britain where the northern border of the US from the Great Lakes to the Rocky Mountains was sent (GB and US traded land to make straight line) and the Oregon Territory was to be jointly occupied for ten years

National Trades Union


The first attempt at a national labor organization. It was formed by the combination of 15 unions into a citywide federation. Called for shorter hours, wages that would keep pace with rising prices, the abolition of imprisonment for debt, compulsory militia duty, free public education, improved living conditions, the right to organize. and ways of warding off the competitive threat of cheap labour. Identified with the fathers in the American Revolution.

Seneca Falls


The leading feminists met at Seneca Falls, New York. At the conclusion of their convention--the first women’s rights convention in American history--they issued a document closely modeled after the Declaration of Independence, which declared that “all men and women are created equal” and listed women’s grievances against laws and customs that discriminated.


Shay's Rebellion


Whiskey Rebellion


Pennsylvania farmers

The Second Bank of the US

1816 - 1832

Chartered in 1816 under Madison, the bank of the US was in control by Biddle during Jackson’s era. Aware of Jackson’s hatred of the bank, Clay and Webster persuaded Biddle to ask Congress to recharter the bank in 1832, reasoning that in an election year, Jackson would not risk a veto; however, Jackson’s veto message reaffirmed his disgust for the Bank and made the bank into an aristocratic symbol. The furor over the bank helped to clarify party positions, and the bank was removed by Chief Justice Taney.

Republic of Fredonia


a short lived ‘independent’ republic formed in 1826 when a small group of Americans living in Mexico rebelled. Stephen Austin and other American immigrants helped to put down the brief uprising. Some American newspapers hailed the revels as “apostles of democracy”.

Panic of 1837


Began after Jackson ended his second term during Van Buren’s. Causes: 1) Jackson’s Specie Circular 2) Wildcat banks 3)Western states had recklessly floated bond issues to finance construction of internal improvements that were unnecessary. International trade problems with Britain and China also contributed to the panic. In order to safeguard the government funds, Buren passed the Independent Treasury Act--sub treasuries. Buren was blamed for the panic and depression and was swept from office in 1840 by Harrison and the Whigs.

Manifest Destiny


This term was coined in 1845 in John L. O’Sullivan’s Democratic review. It refers to the idea that the superior American institutions and culture give Americans a God-given right and even an obligation to spread civilization across the entire continent. This term was used as a justification for westward expansion and for American treatment of other cultures but it did not cause it.



a disputed territory jointly occupied by the US and Britain. In June 1846 (after much diplomatic conflict between the two countries and much debate in the Senate) both sides agreed to compromise and the 49th parallel became the border with Britain retaining control of Vancouver Island. (The 49th parallel was already the US border from the Great Lakes to the Rockys as agreed in the Convention of 1818 so this line was extended to the coast.)


exposition and protest


n anonymous essay published Calhoun that presented the doctrine of nullification as a means by which southern states could protect themselves from harmful national action. It was written in response to the Tariff of Abominations and said that states had the right to declare the legislature null and void if federal laws overstepped the limits of constitutional authority.

On Civil Disobedience


Written by Thoreau during his time in jail. Considered a classic statement of what one person can do to protest unjust laws and wars and live a life of principle.


Joseph Smith


Converted during the Second Great Awakening, Smith claimed to have been visited by the angel Moroni who showed him The Book of Mormon, which described the true church and a lost tribe of Israel. Published his book in 1830 and soon founded the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Attracted people who were trying to escape what they viewed as social disorder, religious impurity, and commercial degradation. Faced persecution in Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois due to support for Indian tribes and unorthodox sexual practices. Was eventually killed by a mob.


1830 - 1850

A small but influential group of New England intellectuals that believed truth was found beyond experience in intuition. Urged Americans to look inward and to nature for self-knowledge, self-reliance, and the “spark of divinity” burning within all people. Asked many questions about the quality of American life--slavery, competitive pace of economic life, materialism, restrictive conformity of social life, etc. Original idea came from Emerson.


1840 - 1850

Believed in perfectionism and the devotion of one’s labor and love to bringing about the millennial kingdom of heaven. Founded by an Englishwoman, Mother Ann Lee. Believed that God had a dual personality, male and female. Their worship service consisted of frenetic dancing intending to “shake” sin off. Shakes held property in common and kept women and men strictly separate (forbidding marriage and sexual relationships). For lack of new recruits, the Shaker communities virtually died out by the mid-1900s. Centered in Mount Lebanon NY.

Brook Farm

1841 - 1849

Founded in 1841 by George Ripley, a Protestant minister, in Massachusetts. His goal was to achieve “a more natural union between intellectual and manual labor.” Many of the leading intellectuals of the period lived on the farm for a period of time: Emerson, Hawthorne, Fuller, etc. A bad fire and heavy debts forced the end of the experiment in 1849.



After undergoing a religious conversion, John Humphrey Noyes in 1848 started a cooperative community in Oneida, New York, that became highly controversial. Dedicated to an ideal of perfect social and economic equality, members of the community shared property--and later even shared marriage partners. Critics attacked the Oneida system of planned reproduction and communal child-rearing as a sinful experiment. Even so, the community managed to prosper economically by producing and selling silverware.

Court Cases

Worcester v. Georgia

1829 - 1832

In 1829, the Georgia legislature declared the Cherokee tribal council illegal and its laws null and void by announcing that the state had full jurisdiction over both the tribe and the lands. The Cherokees carried their protest to the Supreme Courts in 1832 where Marshall supported their position by holding that the laws of Georgia had no force within the boundaries of the Cherokee territory. Jackson, however, sided with the states and defied the supreme court: “John Marshall has made his decision, now let him enforce it.”