Andrew Jackson Essay Research Paper Andrew JacksonAndrew

Andrew Jackson Essay, Research Paper

Andrew Jackson

Andrew Jackson, born in 1767 was a child of poor

Scotch-Irish immigrants. He ended up with enough education

to be qualified to practice law.

Jackson?s father died before he was born. The

Revolutionary War started soon after he was born. It was

very bloody in the wild and poor country where they lived.

Jackson at the age of 13, joined a regiment. He was captured

by the British, was wounded and nearly killed by a sword to

the face for not polishing a British officers boots. He and

his brother, imprisoned together, caught smallpox.

Jackson?s mother got the boys released, but his brother

died on the long trip home. His mother later went to tend

wounded American prisoners and was fatally stricken by


By his 30?s Jackson had been elected a member of the

United States House of Representatives of Tennessee and was

senator, but resigned after one year.

During The War of 1812, Jackson had some difficulties

due to some enemies he made. In between overcoming various

Indian tribes they won the war. After most of the capitol

city of Washington was burned by the British, the Americans

were badly in need of cheering up.

Jackson became a United States Major General- this was

very different from a state militia Major General. He

continued to have military successes, though in his invasion

of Spanish Florida, he got the reputation of being a kind of


In 1821, Jackson, at the age of 54 was in a very

dangerous state of health. He, like many other southerners

had defended his ?Honor? in 2 or 3 duels and 1 shoot-out. He

took two bullets. One lodged beside his heart and the other

shattered his arm.

At about this time, the ?Hero of New Orleans? was

perhaps the most popular man in the country. He received a

?Favorite Son? endorsement for the presidency from his state

of Tennessee. Believing that Washington had become a ?Sink

or corruption?, he felt called to work for the office. To

gain credibility, he ran for and won a seat in the Senate.

This time, in his maturity, he handled the job well, making

a favorable impression on the old government hands. Many of

which had expected a wild man dressed in buckskins. Jackson

immediately made peace with Thomas Hart Benton, who once

said Jackson would thrash in the streets of Nashville.

Thomas, with the company of his brother, left a bullet in

Jackson?s arm in one of his duels. They became close allies.

Jackson was bitterly disappointed in 1824 by a 4-way

race in which he won a substantial plurality, but lost to

John Quincy Adams in the House of Representatives. In 1828,

Jackson won a ?landslide? victory. The new Democratic party,

which he helped forge, brought a temporary end to all the

fighting and arguing of the parties in American politics.

This time was sometimes called the ?Era of Good Feelings?

On December 22, 1928, a few weeks before Jackson?s

inauguration, he was thrown into a deep sadness, caused by

the death of his wife. He believed that she had died because

of the abusive attacks by the press of the other side.

Jackson at times would use his power and authority as a

?Hot-Headed? man, going into simulated rages. And at other

times, he could appear as the most courteous ?Gentleman?


Even though his wife had just passed away, he made it

to his inauguration. The morning was bright and clear. Yet

there was still snow on the ground which made it very muddy.

As Andrew looked out of his window, he saw all of the people

coming to Washington to shake his hand. Usually the

inauguration was a very peaceful and quiet event. Not this

time! All of the guests were his friends. In their muddy

boots, self-made coon-hats, and many other irregular

clothes, the northwestern fur traders, mountain men,

hunters, and old soldiers came marching to the White House.

They broke through the lines of guards and came crashing

through the front door. They ripped clothes, smashed fine

china and glasses, and climbed on $150 chairs ruining them.

In order to get all of these ?vandals? out, the butlers

and organizers moved all of the punch bowls and food trays

to the lawn outside.

During Jackson?s presidency, he took care of many major

events. One was his refusal to submit to South Carolina.

They said they would make their own country, because they

did not want to pay the ridiculously high federal tariffs.

He rejected the principal they tried to establish that a

state could decide on its own whether federal laws applied

to it or not.

He eliminated the second Bank of the United States.

This was a very interesting move. On the one hand, the bank

had done much to provide a stable environment in which

business could operate. But on the other hand, they were a

private monopoly given a huge privileged place in the

economy, and they used their influence to try to affect


He carried on a strong and generally successful

diplomacy, getting amends from countries which had damaged

United States shipping during The War of 1812.

He did much to push the Indians to the west of the

Mississippi. This formed the ?Trail of Tears?, called so

because thousands of Indians died due to disease or

starvation on a road to Oklahoma.

His government eliminated the National Debt for the

first time. Jackson did a great deal of ?belt-tightening?

and eliminated corrupt public officials. Mostly though the

federal government benefited by the massive migration to the

west, and consequently profited from the sale of public


Because of the strong opposition he created in Congress

and elsewhere, a cohesive new party of opposition (the

Whigs) was created.

In 1832, campaign for Jackson?s reelection was fought

in the midst of two crises. One was triggered by Jackson?s

veto to renew the Bank?s charter. It did not have to be

renewed until 1836 but was brought for renewal in 1832 out

of political considerations by Jackson?s opposition. The

other crises was South Carolina?s pending rebellion.

Jackson?s Vice President was a South Carolinian and he

resigned before his term was over so he could assume a seat

in the Senate. Jackson again won by a landslide, with the

help of his expert political manager, Martin Van Buren.

Van Buren won the presidency in 1836, but served only

one term. He was growing unpopular when in 1837, a

deposition struck. Many blamed this on Jackson?s slaying of

the bank.

On Sunday, June 8, 1845, the doctor came to the White

House to check on the very ill Andrew Jackson. All of his

servants were crowded around the chair he was sitting in.

Jackson said good bye to all of them, and kissed and blessed

all of his family. He then removed the small picture of his

wife, Rachel, that he wore around his neck and put it on

their daughter Little Rachel. He told her to wear it at all

times. Then as everybody wept, he told them not to cry, and

promised that they would all meet each other again in

Heaven, ?Both Black and White?.

A few hours later Jackson?s good friend, Sam Houston,

rushed into the room to find a white faced dead Jackson. He

was sitting in his chair as stiff as a statue. He dropped to

his knees, and wept. When he stood up he grabbed a nearby

boy and told him ?My son, try to remember that you have

looked upon the face of Andrew Jackson. One of the greatest

men I have ever met.?

Two days after Jackson died friends and family buried

him in the garden right next to his wife Rachel. The

inscription on his tombstone read:

General Andrew Jackson

Born March 15, 1767

Died June 8, 1845.

That was all it said, but it was enough.

Overall, the ?Era of Jackson? was a big step for

America. He made many of good decisions, and some bad

actions as president. I would still name him one of the

greatest presidents of all time.

1) Coit, Margaret. Andrew Jackson . Boston: Riverside Press Cambridge,


2) ?Jackson, Andrew?. Young People?s Encyclopedia of the United States.

2nd edition. 1992-1993.

3) Jackson, Andrew. ?America Online.? May 7, 1999. Online posting: 1995.


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