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Timeline of 1846 - 1860

By Pontoc
  • The Oregon Treaty

    The Oregon Treaty
    The Oregon treaty extended the international border between the United States and British North America (Canada). This treaty, combined with the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, nearly doubled the size of the territory in the United States. It shows a rapidly growing nation's desire for more land and sets the manifest destiny mindset in motion. This was huge because many other countries had their sights set on this land. (www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca)
  • Period: to

    Mexican War

    The American-Mexican war was declared because it was said that Mexico had crossed the United State's boundary and had shed American blood on American soil. The war lasted for two years and ended with the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. The winning of the Mexican war basically solidified the idea of manifest destiny in Americans and that the expansion of the United States was righteous. (McPherson, 3-5).
  • Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

    Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
    This treaty recognized the Rio Grande as the boundary that separated Texas from New Mexico and California. It consisted of about 1.2 million square miles of land, for which the U.S. paid Mexico 15 million dollars. It had a negative effect on Mexico as they had just sold about half of their territory. Many of the Mexicans who lived in the sold territory decided to become U.S. citizens. (Varon, 200).
  • Civil Disobedience (Henry David Thoreau)

    Civil Disobedience  (Henry David Thoreau)
    Henry David Thoreau refused to pay his taxes on the grounds that his taxes were being used to fund the American - Mexican war. Thoreau did not want to comply with a government that was fighting a war that he disagreed with. He was subsequently imprisoned, but he did make his point heard. He set forth the example that individuals have the power to stand up for what they believe in, and more importantly, citizens have the power to stand up to their government (Varon, 196).
  • The Compromise of 1850

    The Compromise of 1850
    This document was drawn up to resolve disputes over slavery. California would be admitted to the U.S. as a free state, and contrarily, slavery would be permitted in Washington D.C. (except trade). It also establishes the Fugitive Slave Act. which essentially allows for fugitive slaves to be returned to their owners. Texas gets a new border, and New Mexico and Utah would be able to vote to decide if they would be free or slave states.
  • Fugitive Slave Act

    Fugitive Slave Act
    The Fugitive Slave Act essentially allowed escaped slaves who fled to free states to be captured and returned to their owners. The government even created a law enforcement team (US Marshalls) to handle the search, the trials, and the return of the slaves. The tribunal council was paid by case, and were paid more if they voted to return the slave. This incentive to vote towards returning the slaves made it so that there were no fair trials.
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin

    Uncle Tom's Cabin
    Harriet Beacher Stowe wrote the book "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and sequently further divided the North and South. She became a leading voice in the anti-slavery movement as this book is adamantly against the institution of slavery. She used this book to give an inside look into what life as a slave might look like. Many northers who did not feel strongly one way or another towards slavery changed their minds after reading this book. Stowe opened many eyes to the horrors of slavery.
  • What, to a slave, is the 4th of July? (A speech by Frederick Douglass)

    What, to a slave, is the 4th of July? (A speech by Frederick Douglass)
    Frederick Douglass delivered this famous speech in the wake of the Fugitive Slave Act. In this speech, he condemns slavery and the fact that anyone ever benefitted from it. Douglass really believed that anti-slavery sentiments would eventually prevail over the institution of slavery. This event is so important because he notes that it is hypocritical for a country that sits upon the institution of slavery to celebrate freedom and independence. (cliff notes.com)
  • Kansas - Nebraska Act

    Kansas - Nebraska Act
    The Kansas-Nebraska Act essentially voided the Missouri compromise and created the two new territories. This allowed for popular sovereignty and would leave the decision on whether the two new territories would be free or slave states. This created an influx of pro-slavery and antislavery activists migrating to the Kansas and Nebraska territories to sway the vote.
  • The Gadsden Purchase

    The Gadsden Purchase
    The Gadsden Purchase was constructed after the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. It was created in order to resolve lingering tensions and land disputes between Mexico and the U.S. The United States purchased an additional 29,670 square miles of Mexican territory for 10 million dollars in order to build a transcontinental railroad. This shows how land disputes during this time were a reoccurring problem, and it shows how badly the U.S. wanted to expand. (history.state.org)
  • The Panic of 1857

    The Panic of 1857
    The Panic of 1857 was an economic crisis that put a lot of stress on our nation. A ship carrying 2 million dollars in gold from California, unfortunately, sank in a storm and was lost. Many people ran to their banks to withdraw their money, and banks had to take out loans in order to have enough cash on hand to pay their clients. Men and women lost their jobs and took wage cuts to pay bills. This crisis only added to the already high tension in the U.S. (McPherson, 189).