Manifest Destiny

1327 Words Dec 13th, 2013 6 Pages
Manifest Destiny is a term used to describe the reason behind the US expansion into the West. What are the social, political and economical effects of this idea on the people living in the United States colonies and the West?

Manifest Destiny is a term coined by John L. Sullivan in 1845 when talking about the annexation of Texas. He believed, along with other expansionists, that it’s inevitable that the US population would spread across North America because the land is given by Providence to the United States and that it’s natural that the land should be part of the country [Doc 1]. The idea of westward expansion and Manifest Destiny had positive and negative effects on the politics, society and the economics of the United States and
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John Burnett witnessed the helpless Cherokees pulled from their homes and driven at bayonet point. They were herded into wagons and headed westward. Most of the Cherokee people did not have sufficient cover to protect against the harsh climate. By the time the westward journey ended, four thousand Cherokees had died all because the whites wanted their land. The Cherokee sent an envoy to Jackson to which Jackson decreed that all of their land must be given to the white people [Doc 3]. In addition to the social and political changes that impacted the Indians, there were changes aimed at the economy which also negatively affected the Indians. One act that negatively affected the Indians was the Pacific Railway Act of 1862. This act was created to help the construction of a railroad and telegraph lines from the Missouri River to the Pacific Ocean. Permission was given to the company creating the railroad that they can take away any land touching that of which the railroad is to be built on within 200 feet in width. Although the railroad was a great impact of Manifest Destiny because it allowed for quicker transportation of goods and people to and from the west, it legally allowed for Indian land titles to be extinguished [Doc 7]. However, there were many positive economic aspects for American citizens who were moving westward. The Homestead Act of 1862 was an incentive for people to move

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