By David S. Heidler, Jeanne T. Heidler
Read Online or Download Daily Life in the Early American Republic, 1790-1820: Creating a New Nation (The Greenwood Press Daily Life Through History Series) PDF
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Additional info for Daily Life in the Early American Republic, 1790-1820: Creating a New Nation (The Greenwood Press Daily Life Through History Series)
The greater part of that task fell to ordinary Americans, a motley collection of folk who Europeans rightly concluded were not much to look at. Most of the world’s people existed in drudgery, many under ﬁerce oppression, and the bosses who superintended that oppression or dictated that drudgery, whether from ornate thrones or rude lairs, were complacent in their power. They watched with attitudes ranging from bemused skepticism to outright hostility as ordinary Americans undertook to build a republic so geographically immense and so idealistically principled that there had never been anything like it in the world.
Consequently, he quickly offered not just New Orleans but the entire Louisiana region to the United States. On April 30, 1803, American envoys James Monroe and Robert R. Livingston signed a treaty with France that ceded Louisiana to the United States for about $15 million. Although Federalists objected that the Constitution did not authorize the president to make such arrangements, and Jefferson’s strict construction- 16 Daily Life in the Early American Republic, 1790–1820 ist philosophy troubled him about the matter as well, the dazzling prize of Louisiana was too tempting to resist.
He insisted that ensuring the ﬁnancial security of the nation at large would require that the credit of constituent parts of the Union, the states, be restored also. Under his plan, the federal government would retire its debt at face value in addition to about $13 million of accrued interest, a huge sum of more than $54 million. Because many supposed that such a massive debt would never be paid off, government bonds had decreased in value to as little as 10¢ to 15¢ on the dollar. The virtual worthlessness of these securities meant that mostly speculators had bought them, but now those speculators stood to reap incredible proﬁts.