Unit 1 - Mr. Lee GWHS

Unit 1: The Founding of America
• Renaissance
– Humanism
• Scientific Revolution
• The Enlightenment
– John Locke- “Natural” Rights
– Montesquieu- Separation of Powers
– Adam Smith – Liberty in the sphere of economics
• “Lassiaze-faire” economics
– Rousseau- Social Contract
The Role of Religion
• The Great Awakening 1700-Revolution
– People could challenge the spiritual complacency
of the Church by being bolder and more overtly
joyous in their worship.
– Attitude transferred over to the political arena and
changed peoples views of the monarchy.
The Founders and the Importance of
John Adams
Signer of the Declaration of Independence and Second President of the United
[I]t is religion and morality alone which can establish the principles upon which
freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free constitution is pure
(Source: John Adams, The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Francis Adams, editor (Boston: Little, Brown, 1854), Vol. IX, p. 401, to
Zabdiel Adams on June 21, 1776.)
[W]e have no government armed with power capable of contending with human
passions unbridled by morality and religion. . . . Our constitution was made only
for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any
(Source: John Adams, The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Francis Adams, editor (Boston: Little, Brown, and Co. 1854), Vol. IX, p.
229, October 11, 1798.)
The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the
laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it,
anarchy and tyranny commence. If "Thou shalt not covet," and "Thou shalt not
steal," were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable
precepts in every society, before it can be civilized or made free.
(Source: John Adams, The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Francis Adams, editor (Boston: Charles C. Little and James Brown,
1851), Vol. VI, p. 9.)
Declaration of Independence
• When, in the course of human events, it
becomes necessary for one people to dissolve
the political bands which have connected
them with another, and to assume among the
powers of the earth, the separate and equal
station to which the laws of nature and of
nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to
the opinions of mankind requires that they
should declare the causes which impel them
to the separation.
• We hold these truths to be self-evident, that
all men are created equal, that they are
endowed by their Creator with certain
unalienable rights, that among these are life,
liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to
secure these rights, governments are
instituted among men, deriving their just
powers from the consent of the governed.
• That whenever any form of government
becomes destructive to these ends, it is the
right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and
to institute new government, laying its
foundation on such principles and organizing
its powers in such form, as to them shall seem
most likely to effect their safety and
• Prudence, indeed, will dictate that
governments long established should not be
changed for light and transient causes; and
accordingly all experience hath shown that
mankind are more disposed to suffer, while
evils are sufferable, than to right themselves
by abolishing the forms to which they are
• But when a long train of abuses and
usurpations, pursuing invariably the same
object evinces a design to reduce them under
absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their
duty, to throw off such government, and to
provide new guards for their future security. -Such has been the patient sufferance of these
colonies; and such is now the necessity which
constrains them to alter their former systems
of government.
• And for the support of this declaration, with a
firm reliance on the protection of Divine
Providence, we mutually pledge to each other
our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.
The First Amendment
• What does it say?
• Congress shall make no law respecting an
establishment of religion, or prohibiting the
free exercise thereof; or abridging the
freedom of speech, or of the press; or the
right of the people peaceably to assemble,
and to petition the Government for a redress
of grievances.
Rule of Man vs. Rule of Law
• Rejection of Divine Right of Kings
• Constitutional Republic
– Why did the founders fear democracy?
• Article: Rule of Man vs. Rule of Law
• American vs. The French Revolution
The Founders
• “Liberally endowed as a whole with courage and sense of purpose,
the signers [of the Declaration of Independence] consisted of a
distinguished group of individuals. Although heterogeneous in
background, education, experience, and accommplishments, at the
time of the signing they were practically all men of means and
represented an elite cross section of 18th-century American
leadership. Everyone one of them of them had achieved
prominence in his colony, but only a few enjoyed a national
reputation. The signers were those individuals who happened to be
Delegates to Congress at the time... The signers possessed many
basic similarities. Most were American-born and of Anglo-Saxon
origin. The eight foreign-born... were all natives of the British Isles.
Except for Charles Carroll, a Roman Catholic, and a few Deists, every
one subscribed to Protestantism. For the most part basically
political nonextremists, many at first had hesitated at separation let
alone rebellion.” From: Robert G. Ferris (editor), Signers of the Declaration: Historic Places Commemorating the Signing of the Declaration of
Independence, published by the United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service: Washington, D.C. (revised edition 1975), pages 27-28:
Religious Affiliation
of U.S. Founding Fathers#
Episcopalian/Anglican 88 54.7%
Presbyterian 30 18.6%
Congregationalist 27 16.8%
Quaker 7 4.3%
Dutch Reformed/German Reformed 6 3.7% Lutheran 5
Catholic 3 1.9%
Huguenot 3 1.9%
Unitarian 3 1.9%
Methodist 2 1.2%
Calvinist 1 0.6%
The American Experiment
• It acknowledged that individual rights are derived from a Creator.
• It was based on enduring principles compatible with "the laws of
nature and of nature's God."
• It recognized human imperfection and that a tendency to abuse
power is ever present in the human heart.
• It restrained those in power through a written Constitution which
carefully divided, balanced, and separated the powers of
government and then intricately knitted them back together again
through a system of checks and balances.
• It left all powers with the people, except those which, by their
consent, the people delegated to government and then made
provision for their withdrawing that power, if it was abused.
Highlights of Washington’s
Administration 1789-1797
• Bill of Rights 1791
• First Census: 3.9 Million
– Only 12 cities of more than 5000 (most farmers)
– Judiciary Act of 1789
• Judiciary Act of 1789
– Established Federal Court System
• Whiskey Rebellion- 1794
– Demonstrated power and authority of federal govt. (although
the tax remained difficult to collect)
• Jay Treaty of 1794
– credited with averting war,[2] resolving some issues remaining since
the Treaty of Paris of 1783, which ended the American Revolution,[3]
and facilitated ten years of peaceful trade between the United States
and Britain
Washinton’s Farewell Address
• Dangers of:
– Political factions
– Amendments to weaken Federal Govt.
– Excessive borrowing and debt
– Foreign Alliances
• Importance of:
– The Constitution
– Good Credit
– Religion and Morality
Emergence of Political Parties
• Federalists (Alexander Hamilton and
– Dominant to 1800
– Advocated:
Strong Federal Govt.
Pro-England (due to trade)
Assumption of states war debts usint tariffs
National Bank
Pro-business and manufacturing
Loose interpretation of Constitution
Thomas Jefferson and James Madison
Pro-South and farmers
Anti-strong federal powers
Anti-standing army and navy
Strict constitutional reading
Feared British aristocracy would undermine
Adams Administration 1797-1801
• XYZ Affair
French anger over the Jay Treaty
Seized over 300 American Vessels
Demanded $12M bribe
Refusal to pay debts to Revolutionary Govt. of France
• Anti-French Sentiment
• New American Army formed
• Navy strengthened
– Quasi-War: Presidential War Powers
• Alien and Sedition Acts
– Unconstitutional ?
Quasi War and Presidential War
• The Quasi War has taken on a significant role in modern
debates over the distribution of war powers between the
Executive and Legislative branches.
• Supporters of a broad executive war power have
sometimes appealed to the Quasi War with France, in the
closing years of the eighteenth century, as an example of
unilateral warmaking on the part of the president. Francis
Wormuth, an authority on war powers and the
Constitution, describes that contention as "altogether
false." John Adams "took absolutely no independent action.
Congress passed a series of acts that amounted, so the
Supreme Court said, to a declaration of imperfect war; and
Adams complied with these statutes."
Alien and Sedition Acts
• Four bills passed as a result of French Revolution and
Quasi War
– Naturalization Act - residency requirement for citizenship
from 5 to 14 years
– The Alien Act – power to deport anyone deemed
“dangerous to the peace and safety of the US.” (2 yr.
– The Alien Enemies Act- power to deport any alien if US at
war with home country. (still in effect)
– The Sedition Act- made it a crime to publish "false,
scandalous, and malicious writing" against the government
or its officials. It was enacted July 14, 1798, with an
expiration date of March 3, 1801
Effects of the Alien and Sedition Acts
• Japanese internment
• Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions
– Nullification is a legal theory that a U.S. State has
the right to nullify, or invalidate, any federal law
which that state has deemed unconstitutional.
– Interposition is an asserted right of U.S. states to
declare federal actions unconstitutional.
– Civil War
Chief Justice John Marshall
• Appointed by Adams
• Expanded powers of the
Court with Judicial
• Federalist interpretation
of the Constitution
• Stronger national govt.
Marbury vs. Madison (1803)
• It formed the basis for the exercise of judicial review in the United
States under Article III of the Constitution. It was also the first time
in Western history a court invalidated a law by declaring it
"unconstitutional“. The landmark decision helped define the
"checks and balances" of the American form of government.
• This case resulted from a petition to the Supreme Court by William
Marbury, who had been appointed by President John Adams as
Justice of the Peace in the District of Columbia but whose
commission was not subsequently delivered. Marbury petitioned
the Supreme Court to force Secretary of State James Madison to
deliver the documents, but the court, with John Marshall as Chief
Justice, denied Marbury's petition, holding that the part of the
statute upon which he based his claim, the Judiciary Act of 1789,
was unconstitutional.
• "To what purpose are powers limited, and to
what purpose is that limitation committed to
writing, if these limits may, at any time, be
passed by those intended to be restrained?“
– John Marshall, Marbury vs. Madison
President Thomas Jefferson
• He promised "a wise
and frugal government"
to preserve order
among the inhabitants
but would "leave them
otherwise free to
regulate their own
pursuits of industry, and
• Louisiana Purchase
• Lewis and Clark
– Find Northwest Passage
• Greatly Reduced Deficit
– Cut govt. and military
• Rising tension with
England and France
James Madison and War of 1812
• Causes
– Impressment
– British interference with shipping
– British aid to Native Americans
• Results
Destroyed the Federalist Party
Native Americans lose powerful ally
Psychological triumph for the young nation
Era of Good Feelings/Strong nationalism
Industrial Revolution in America
• Samuel Slater –Textile Mills
– Lowell, Massachusetts
• Eli Whitney –Cotton Gin
– Revives slavery
– Cotton becomes #1 export
James Monroe (1817-1825)
• Monroe Doctrine– Americas should be free from additional European
colonization and free from European interference in
sovereign countries' affairs.
– It further stated the United States' intention to stay
neutral in wars between European powers and their
– but to consider any new colonies or interference with
independent countries in the Americas as hostile acts
towards the United States.
• Landmark Foreign Policy statement that would be
cited by modern Presidents.
Andrew Jackson
• Jacksonian Democracy
Expanded Suffrage
Manifest Destiny
Patronage- “spoils system”
Strict Constructionism
• Opposed Second Bank of the US
• Initially believed in limited powers but later expanded role of
– Laissez-Faire Economics
• Support: Western farmers and Eastern artisans,
workers, merchants. Favored Western expansion
– Distrusted: Eastern industrialists
Nullification Crisis
• States vs. Federal Govt. over Tariffs
• Tariffs were opposed by South Carolina and
• Jackson sent Naval Vessels
• Henry Clay- Compromise Tariff of 1833
• Implications:
– Jackson exerted-Principle of Union Supremacy
– Pre-cursor to Civil War Arguments from South
– South Carolina was able to get some demands,
pressure Fed.
Jackson and Banking
• The 2nd Bank of the United States
• Issues?
• Results?