Notes on Expansionism and Manifest Destiny*

Manifest Destiny & Westward
Miss Springborn
Team 6- Social Studies
What is Manifest Destiny ?
• Manifest Destiny: The belief that the
United States should “expand
ocean to ocean.”
Manifest Destiny
• “The American
claim is by the
right of our
manifest destiny to
overspread and
possess the whole
of the continent…”
- John O’Sullivan
• People living in our
country thought that we
were a special nation and
therefore destined to
spread across the
continent from sea to
BrainPOP | Social Studies |
Learn about Westward
Our First Expansion:
The Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana PurchaseOctober 20th 1803
• Purchased from Napoleon and
France by President Thomas
Napoleon needed money to fight
wars in Europe
Why would be interested in
such a deal?- United States was
scared France would not let us use
the port city of New Orleans.
So…. President Jefferson offers to
buy the land from France.
Cost of the Louisiana Purchase
• It cost $15 million and doubles the
size of the United States.
• In 1804 the cost was $0.03 a square
• In 2008, the Equivalent cost was about
$2.57 per square mile.
Was this a Good Deal for the United States???
– Yes it was a GREAT deal! We gained
lots of new land at a really cheap price.
We also gained control of the Mississippi
River and the Port of New Orleans
• Lewis and Clark Brainpop
• Many People wanted
to settle in this area,
but it was owned by
Additionally there
many Seminole
Indians in this area
who were hostile.
• In April 1818, General Andrew Jackson
invaded Florida
• This was known as the first Seminole
• Jackson’s actions convinced Spanish
leaders to settle the border dispute. We
told them to govern the territory of Florida
or Get out of our way. We also offered
to pay $5 million dollars in settlements.
• So Spain agreed to give the U.S. Florida
with the signing of the Adam-Onis Treaty
of 1819.
Texas War for Independence
• Many Americans had moved into the western
territory known as Texas and owned by the
newly independent country of Mexico.
Mexicans had overthrown the Spanish and
gained independence. American settler,
Moses Austin, was given a large amount of
land to start a colony under Mexican rule.
Austin and his settlers had to agree to
become Mexican citizens and join the
Catholic Church to stay
Texas Continued…
• Tensions will rise when
thousands of new settlers
arrive to the now Stephen
Austin’s colony. By 1830
there were over 25,000
American colonists living there.
These new settlers did not
want to live under Mexican
rule. War will break out.
• When did war break out?-
Settlers will rebel lead by William
Travis and Stephen Austin.
Mexican leader General Antonio
Lopez De Santa Anna refused to
negotiate with the Texas settlers.
Santa Anna and his troops will
march on the Texans in 1836.
They will attack Americans held up
in the old Spanish mission known
as The Alamo.
• Important People to know…
• Stephen Austin, leader of settlers
from America.
• William Travis, Jim Bowie, Davey
Crocket- all fought on Texas’s side
at the Battle the Alamo where
1,800 Mexican troops attacked 189.
Texas troops over 12 days. Texans
were outnumbered 10 to 1.
• “Remember the Alamo” became
rallying cry of war for the rest of the
Texas Settlers
• Texans will win their own independence
under the command of Sam Houston. He
will be elected the first president of the Lone
Star Republic in 1836. It will be a few years
before Texas become part of the United
“Remember the Alamo”
became rallying cry of war.
The Oregon Trail
The United States gains the territory of Oregon.
We were in a battle over it with Russia, Spain,
and Great Britain. Spain and Russia will drop
their claims and the United States and Great
Britain will agree to a “peaceful occupation” of
the territory. We will divide the line between
the 54’ 40 parallel of latitude.
The Oregon Trail
• Thousands of settlers will want to head west
to this new territory and will travel along the
Oregon Trail to get there.
• This Path that stretched over _2,000 miles
west and through the Rocky Mountains. A
trip lasted an average of 6 months.
Travelers went from dawn till dusk
The Oregon Trail
Thousands of Americans made the journey.
Americans living in Oregon wanted to become a
state. Expansionists wanted to control all of the
land north until the 54th parallel. Settlers used
the slogan “_Fifty-Four Forty or Fight ” and
“All of Oregon or None!” Eventually war was
avoided when President Polk got a peaceful
solution with The treaty between the US and
Great Britain signed, settling at the 49th
Mexican War:
Most Americans will support the
United States going to war with
Mexico over the territory of
Texas. Congress voted to annex
Texas in 1845. Texas will
become the 28th state added to
the United States. Of course
Mexico will not accept this and
tensions between the US and
Mexico will rise.
Mexican War:
When? - President Polk declares
war in May 1846 when Mexicans
fired upon US troops stations on
the Rio Grande border. Americans
were technically on Mexican soil in
disputed land when the attack
happened but we used this info to
help sway Congress to declare
Mexican War:
• Why? - “Mexico has shed _American
blood on American soil” said President
James Polk
• American troops and Mexican troops
clashed in many disputed areas near
Mexican/Texas border. We invade
areas of Mexico along the disputed border
Mexican War:
• How does this War finally end? – We sign the Treaty
of Guadalupe Hidalgo . This gave the United States the
Mexican Cession and later added the Gadsden
The Mexican Cession:
Land given up by Mexico, included what is now California_,
Nevada_, and Utah
It also included most of Arizona and New Mexico and
parts of Colorado, Texas and Wyoming.
The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
The Gadsden Purchase:
In 1853, James Gadsden arranged
the purchase of a strip of land from
Mexico for $10 million dollars.
Railroad builders needed this land
just south of the Mexican Cession.
We officially stretched from “Sea to
Shining Sea”.
Included Southern Parts of
Arizona_ and_ New Mexico
Brainpop for Mexican American
Gold Rush time…
The California Gold Rush
• In 1849, GOLD was
discovered at a mill.
Over 80,000 settlers
came from all over to
look for gold.
These people were
called forty-niners.
Very few struck it
Gold Rush:
• Very few struck it rich. The journey was
very difficult. Almost all of the 49’s were
men. People who made it rich were those
that took advantage of the 49’s selling
them supplies. Suppliers sold eggs for $6
a dozen and flour for $400 a barrel.
Mining camps were very rough places and
crime was very common.
Actual posters from the
Gold Rush…
Places where gold was found…
Gold Rush:
• One man to make a fortune from the
Gold Rush was Levi Strauss whose
pants sold to miners became famous
and known today as jeans. Many
Chinese immigrants traveled to
California. By 1852, over 20,000 had
come to the US. They did not strike it
rich but had a great deal of farming
knowledge and settled. They did face
discrimination from native Californians.
Brainpop for the Gold Rush
• Bring colored pencils so we can complete
the Manifest Destiny map!!

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