The Louisiana Purchase Mrs. Eason th 4 Grade What was it? The Louisiana Purchase was the purchase of land by the United States from France in 1803. It was one of the most important land acquisitions in the history of the country. Many say that it allowed the United States to expand even further westward and to become the nation it is today. What was included? The Purchase contained what now equates to portions of 15 states in the US and 2 Canadian provinces. The land that was bought enclosed all of Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and parts of Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, New Mexico, Texas, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and of course Louisiana. The land purchased also included parts of what is now Alberta and Saskachewan in Canada. The land that was purchased in the Louisiana Purchase now makes up about 23% of the territory of the United States. The Louisiana Purchase!!! What did the French want? The French’s financial situation was in a wreck and Napoleon Bonaparte realized that opportunity was fading in the New World. His attempts at maintaining the territories in the Caribbean were failing and he wanted a presence in the West for the lucrative sugar trade. After his failed attempts at maintaining order there, he decided that keeping all the territory in North America simply wasn’t worth the trouble. What did the U.S. Want? The U.S. understood the importance of the port of New Orleans and had already made previous negotiations to use the port and not be harassed there. The desire of the U.S. was to purchase the port outright so that they could control this very important marketplace. The U.S. went to Paris to negotiate the purchase of the port of New Orleans but was unsuccessful the first time. The President at the time: As President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson faced much opposition to the purchase of the land. Many said that it was unconstitutional and undermined the authority of the states in the government. Jefferson was exploring new bounds of governmental control. He didn’t want France and Spain to have the ability to block American trade across the port of New Orleans. Napoleon recognized it was an important move: While Napoleon Bonaparte didn’t want to just give away his conquered territories, the rivalry between France and England was still very strong. Bonaparte saw selling the land to the U.S. as an opportunity to block the power of England. Negotiations The negotiation took place in Paris in 1803 by James Monroe and Robert Livingston They only wanted the port at the time and didn’t imagine how much land they would really end up getting. How much? The U.S. negotiators were prepared to spend $10 million on the port of New Orleans. They were pleasantly surprised when the entire region was offered to them for only $15 million. At the time, purchasing the territory meant doubling the size of the United State. The price of the land included in the purchase was less than 3 cents per acre. The Ceremonial Transfer of the Louisiana Purchase in New Orleans in 1803 Financing The American government made a down payment on the land in gold totaling $3 million. The rest was financed in bonds by some of the most important banks in Europe at the time. Click on the link below to play the game: scroll down to bottom of page http://jtlawson.tripod.com/ This game is a review of the Louisiana Purchase AND some of the past lessons taught!