Andrew Jackson Essay, Research Paper
My name is Andrew Jackson, and I was the 7th president of the United States. People tell me that I have a lot to be proud of, because I wasn?t just a president, I worked as a prosecuting attorney, and I fought in the war. I?ve heard people say that I was the best-loved and most-hated president the young nation had ever known. I named a era after myself, and always lived according to the rugged, straightforward code of the American frontier.
In 1802, I was elected major general of the military force. The turning point in my life was definitely my service in the War of 1812. One of my first victories was over the Creek Indians. Inspired by the British attacks on the Americans, the Creeks raided frontier settlements in Georgia and Alabama. My Tennessee military and I crushed the Creeks at the battle of Horseshoe Bend, Alabama, on March 27, 1814. After winning that battle, I was then ordered to defend New Orleans. I built up my small regular army, and recruited frontier riflemen from Tennessee and Kentucky, and also gathered a force of volunteers. On January 8, 1815 the British troops charged. It was a massacre; the British withdrew after suffering 2,237 deaths, while we only lost 71.
We won the battle, however fighting the battle was a tragic mistake. Only days earlier, December 24,1814, a peace treaty had been signed. Communication was so slow, that the news just didn?t reach me in time. Of course my little victories didn?t affect the outcome of the War of 1812, but it did make me a national hero. With the exception of Gen. William Henry Harrison, no American except me had achieved anything like military triumph.
In 1817 I was ordered to the Alabama-Georgia region to defend settlers against attacks by Seminole Indians from Florida. In 1818, I pushed into Spanish-held Florida, and captured Pensacola, and hung two British soldiers as spies. When Spain offered Florida to the United States in 1821, I was appointed by President Monroe to be the first governor. Soon however, I became tired of politics and resigned in late 1821, and planned to retire to a private life, but in 1823 I was elected once more to the Senate. I resigned again in 1825.
In 1824, I was nominated by the Tennessee legislature for the presidency of the United States. I received more votes than any of the other four people in the election, but I didn?t receive the majority. This meant that the House of Representatives would choose the president. One candidate gave his votes to John Quincy Adams who became the sixth president of the United States. I was soon elected president. On March 4, 1829, I was inaugurated the seventh president of the Unites States.
My belief in the people and my loyalty to my supporters led me to extend what is called the ?spoils system.? This is the practice of releasing from public office members of the defeated political party and replacing them with members of the winning party. I represented the first real break in that alliance. I removed 919 federal employees in favor of my own party.
Since I was named ?Spokesman of the West? I distrusted the powerful financiers of the East. I detested the monopoly held by the Bank of the United States and vetoed a new charter for the bank. I also declared that the it?s control of the nation?s money was a threat to both business and democratic government. Because of this issue I was easily re-elected for presidency in 1832.
Before my second term in office began, nullification became an issue. Congress had passed a tariff that South Carolina thought was against its own interests. I was behind states? rights, but in a struggle that placed the interests of a state above those of the Union, I was firmly behind the supreme powers of the federal government. Speaking out against nullification I stated: I consider, then, the power to annul a law of the Unites States, assumed by one State, incompatible with the existence of the Union, contradicted expressly by the letter of the Constitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent with every principle on which it was founded, and destructive of the great object to which it was formed. The crisis was soon eased when Congress passed a compromise tariff in 1833 along with the force bill. I had preserved the Union, but nullification remained a great question.
During my presidency, there was a large amount of slaveholding Southerners in Texas. Most of the settlers favored annexing Texas to the United States, like I did. Texas fought for and won their independence from Mexico, and requested annexation. I refused to press for annexation because the northern states were not in favor of creating a new slave state. On my last day in office, I took a step and accepted the independent Republic of Texas and named a diplomat to represent the United States there.
By the time the election of 1836, I was weak from tuberculosis and had no desire to serve for a third term. However, I still wanted to continue with affairs of state and the party, as well as ensuring that the party nominated Van Buren as my successor. The last day of my presidency was just as exciting as my first, many came not to see the new president, but just to say a final good-bye to me.