HISTORY AND POLITICAL SCIENCE Your Instructor Impact of westward expansion during Jefferson’s presidency Thomas Jefferson was the third president of the United States and served as the president from 1801 to 1809…
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The greatest achievement of Jefferson in his first term as president was the purchase of the Louisiana Territory in 1803 from France. The Louisiana Purchase was one of the leading land deals in history. The United States paid approximately $ 15 million dollars in 1803 for over 828, 000 square miles of land2. This act served as the main achievement in the period of Jefferson’s presidency (The Jefferson Monticello 6). The westward expansion of the land had several impacts on the Native Americans, the African Americans and the Americans as a whole. The Louisiana Purchase Thomas Jefferson purchased a large piece land from France that was referred to as the Louisiana Purchase. The land consisted of Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Nebraska, some parts of Minnesota to the south of Mississippi River, sections of Montana, Northern Texas, Kansas, Wyoming, and Louisiana on the either sides of River Mississippi as well as the city of New Orleans. There are several areas that are also included in the land Purchase. Before Jefferson purchased the land, United States had only thirteen states. The purchase of this piece of land almost doubled the size of the United States. There are various reasons why President Jefferson purchased land. The main reason was because the New Orleans was the main port for trade. The port was mainly used to store the export items and was also used for importing the goods coming from the other countries. However, the nation was under a constant threat of having the port taken away for trading purposes. For that reason therefore, President Jefferson thought that it would be wise and best for the country if he purchased it3. The plans of President Jefferson depended on the western expansion and access to the markets for the American products, especially the farm products. Due to the expansion, the new American settlements on the west of the Appalachian Mountain mainly depended on river transport in order to get their goods to the market because the overland trade to the east was very costly and impractical (The Jefferson Monticello 4). The impacts of westward expansion Baldwin asserts that even though the westward expansion was of vital importance, it also affected the Native Americans, African Americans, and the entire American society differently (41). America did not have New Orleans in 1800 which acted as the major factor to the economy of Mississippi valley as a whole. Most parts of North America were controlled by the European powers, Spain, France, England and Russia4. Another reason why Jefferson agreed with the Napoleon’s offer of selling Louisiana was to ensure that the United States of America dominated power in the northern part of the continent. The expansion had several impacts on the people. For instance, it caused difficulties in transportation, lowered economic level, increased racism and in the process; wars took place leading to destruction of property and loss of life. All individuals including the Native Americans, the African Americans and the American society as a whole experienced the impacts of the expansion. In general, all Americans were affected during the westward expansion. The effects of the westward expansion on Native Americans The Native Americans experienced various impacts due to westward expansion. For instance, social instability as most parents could not control their children because they thought they were big enough to be independent. They therefore left their families
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