1816 : America Rising Analysis

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1816: America Rising is a comprehensive, well-sourced and well-argued book centering on why the year 1816 was a pivotal moment in the history of the United States politically. With the United States finally coming into peace following the War of 1812, author C. Edward Skeen highlights the politics and growth beginning to transform the landscape of the country. By utilizing numerous and various primary sources such as newspapers to congressional debates to personal letters, Skeen presents a comprehensively sourced book that provides depth while still maintaining ease of readability. Skeen chooses 1816 as the main focus for the book due to the significance of the year in the context of the burgeoning United States. While the main focus of …show more content…

Indeed, the year 1816 was a pivotal moment in the history the United States simply due to the fact that America was perched on the cusp of political, social, cultural, and economic modernity. The decisions made during this year pushed the country forward into the brink of unity. Skeen utilizes a healthy selection of sources and uses them to aid his points about the United States’ burgeoning unification amongst both people and states. For example, perhaps the most noteworthy result of the 14th National Congress was the effort backed by the Republicans to enact a tariff and this highlights this transition from the previous era of barely-formed unity to a new era of national identity. Additionally, a number of other important political occurrences occurred during the year in this particularly colorful time in Congress. These included dramatic and new proposals ranging from the expansion of the army and navy to the chartering of a national bank to an – ultimately unsuccessful – attempt to sponsor internal improvements within the federal government all of which took place in over one calendar year. Skeen notes these as important due to what he saw as the birth of American nationalism, “[…] a growing sense of nationhood and pride in being an American”. The review of the book makes note of this political focus by stating “The review of the book also highlights this political

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