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Western Expansion (1800-1898)

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At the beginning of 1800, the United States was formally comprised of sixteen states: the original thirteen colonies having been recognized as independent by the Treaty of Paris in 1783 and the states of Vermont, Kentucky and Tennessee having been added to the union by 1796. But American trappers and settlers were busily expanding to other areas, and the country was growing rapidly. Americans did not question their right to colonize vast expanses of North America beyond their country's borders. By the mid-1840s, United States expansionism was expressed in terms of "manifest destiny," and by the end of the nineteenth century, the United States had aquired all of its current territory through a series of wars and peaceful acquisitions:

  • In 1803, the United States made the the Lousiana Purchase, aquiring a huge tract of land (530 million acres!) from Napoleon Bonaparte. This land makes up approximately 22 percent of the current United States and contained parts or all of present-day Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, northern Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, portions of Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado, portions of southern Manitoba, southern Saskatchewan and southern Alberta, and Louisiana. Not all of this land was kept, later being ceded to Great Britain and Spain in exchange for other territory.
  • West Florida was made a U.S. possession in 1810 by President James Madison.
  • The Red River Basin, part of current-day Minnesota and North Dakota, was acquired in the Anglo-American Convention of 1818, a treaty with Great Britain which resolved boundry issues, set the US/Canadian boundary along the 49th parallel, and allowed for joint control of the Oregon Country.
  • East Florida was acquired in the Adams-Onis Treaty of 1819 with Spain. The treaty that gained East Florida also included Spain's surrender of any claims to the Oregon Country.
  • The Oregon Country was jointly controlled by the U.S. and Great Britain until 1846 when the Oregon Treaty divided that territory also at the 49th parallel. This created the Oregon Territory, which includes present-day Oregon, Washington and Idaho, as well as parts of Montana and Wyoming.
  • The Republic of Texas, which had gained its independence from Mexico in 1836, voted that year to be annexed by the United States. However it was nearly 10 years before the annexation of Texas took place. President John Tyler signed a treaty of annexation with Texas in 1844; congress approved it in 1845 and Texas became the 28th state later that year.
  • Mexican leader Antonio López de Santa Anna warned that the annexation of Texas would be "equivalent to a declaration of war against the Mexican Republic." Mexico had never formally acknowledged Texas independence and considered it a matter of national pride to fight for what it considered a rebel province. Thus started the Mexican-American war. The United States defeated Mexico and in the subsequent Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico ceded to the United States parts of what are Texas, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico and Wyoming, and the whole of California, Nevada and Utah. They also recognized the Rio Grande as Texas' Southern border.
  • Less than five years after the Mexican Cession, the United States made the Gadsden Purchase of 1853, aquiring a strip of land along the U.S.-Mexico border, now in New Mexico and Arizona. This territory was later used for the southern transcontinental railroad.
  • In 1867, the United States purchased Alaska from Russia.
  • Hawaii was annexed in 1898 upon the request of a government made up primarily of American and European businessmen who had overthrown the Kingdom of Hawaii.
  • Puerto Rico, Guam, the Philippines, and Cuba were ceded by Spain to the United States after the Spanish-American War in 1898. All four of these areas were under United States Military Government for extended periods. Cuba became an independent nation in 1902. The Philippines became an independent nation in 1946.
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267 Items found Print
1846 - Portrait of the Nation
by Smithsonian Institute
from Smithsonian Books
in Western Expansion (1800-1898) (Location: B01-14A)
Abe Lincoln Grows Up
by Carl Sandburg
1st edition from Graphia
Biography for 5th-8th grade
in Biographies (Location: A12-01A)
Abraham Lincoln's World
by Genevieve Foster, expanded by Joanna Foster
from Beautiful Feet Books
Historical Non-fiction for 7th-10th grade
1945 Newbery Honor Book
in American Civil War (1860-1865) (Location: B01-18A)
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Puffin Classics
by Mark Twain
from Puffin Books
for 6th-10th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Sterling Classics
by Mark Twain & Scott McKowen
from Sterling Publishing Co.
for 6th-10th grade
in Sterling Classics (Location: A04-04A)
Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Puffin Classics
by Mark Twain
from Puffin Books
Realistic Fiction for 6th-10th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Puffin Classics
by Mark Twain
from Penguin Classics
Realistic Fiction for 6th-10th grade
in 19th Century Literature (Location: CLT-19C)
Alaska Gold Rush
Landmark #92
by May McNeer
from Random House
for 5th-9th grade
in American Landmark Books (Location: A10-04D)
Alexander Graham Bell
by Elizabeth MacLeod
from Kids Can Press
Biography for 3rd-6th grade
in Biographies (Location: A12-01A)
All That Glitters
Perspectives on History Series
by Phyllis Raybin Emert
from History Compass
Historical Non-fiction for 6th-9th grade
in California Gold Rush (Location: B01-14D)
Amazing Impossible Erie Canal
by Cheryl Harness
from Aladdin Paperbacks
Historical Non-Fiction for 3rd-6th grade
in Western Expansion (1800-1898) (Location: B01-14A)
American Heritage History of the Indian Wars
by Robert M. Utley, Wilcomb E. Washburn
Revised from American Heritage Publishing Co.
for 6th-Adult
in Native Americans (Location: B01-16C)
American History for Young Students II
by Michelle Miller
from TruthQuest History
History Curriculum for 1st-5th grade
Cathy Duffy's 100 Top Picks
in TruthQuest History (Location: B04-01A)
American History Stories Volume 3
by Mara L. Pratt
from Yesterday's Classics
for 3rd-6th grade
in Yesterday's Classics (Location: A11-02C)
Attack at Michilimackinac 1763
by David Armour
from Mackinac State Historic Parks
for 8th-12th grade
in Exploration (1450-1900) (Location: B01-05A)
Ballad of Lucy Whipple
by Karen Cushman
from HarperCollins
for 3rd-6th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Battle of Seattle
by Douglas Bond
from P&R Publishing
for 4th-9th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Battle of the Little Bighorn
by R. Conrad Stein
from Children's Press
for 5th-8th grade
in Native Americans (Location: B01-16C)
Before the Gold Rush
from McClelland & Stewart Limited
for 4th-6th grade
in Western Expansion (1800-1898) (Location: B01-14A)
Beginning of the Republic
A Basic History of the United States Volume 2
by Clarence B. Carson
from American Textbook Committee
American History Reference for 9th-Adult
in Basic History of the United States (Location: B04-02A)
Big Book of Cowboys
by Holling Clancy Holling
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 3rd-8th grade
in Cowboys & Cattlemen (Location: B01-17B)
Big Book of the Old West to Color
by Peter F. Copeland, et al.
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
$7.16
Bite of the Gold Bug
by Barthe DeClements
from Puffin Books
for 4th-6th grade
in Gilded Age (1865-1918) (Location: B01-20B)
Bonanza Girl
by Patricia Beatty
from Sonlight Curriculum, Ltd.
for 6th-10th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Bound for Oregon
by Jean Van Leeuwen
from Puffin Books
Historical Fiction for 4th-7th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Brave Buffalo Fighter
by John D. Fitzgerald
from Bethlehem Books
Realistic Fiction for 7th-10th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
Brown Paper School USKids History: Book of the New American Nation
by Howard Egger-Bovet, Marlene Smith-Baranzini
First Edition from Little, Brown & Company
for 3rd-8th grade
in New Nation (1783-1800) (Location: B01-10D)
Buffalo Bill
by Edgar & Ingri D'Aulaire
from Beautiful Feet Books
Picture Book Biography for 3rd-6th grade
in Biographies (Location: A12-01A)
$15.95
Buffalo Bill's Great Wild West Show
Landmark #73
by Walter Havighurst
from Random House
for 5th-8th grade
in American Landmark Books (Location: A10-04D)
Buffalo Bill: Frontier Daredevil
Childhood of Famous Americans
by Meryl Stevenson
from Aladdin Paperbacks
for 3rd-6th grade
in Childhood of Famous Americans (Location: A12-07D)
Buffalo Coat
by Carol Ryrie Brink
for 9th-Adult
in Realistic Fiction (Location: A09-01A)
Buffalo Hunt
by Russell Freedman
from Holiday House
Historical Non-Fiction for 4th-8th grade
in Native Americans (Location: B01-16C)
Building of the First Transcontinental Railroad
Landmark #9
by Adele Nathan
from Random House
for 5th-8th grade
in American Landmark Books (Location: A10-04D)
By the Great Horn Spoon!
by Sid Fleischman
from Little, Brown & Company
Realistic Fiction for 3rd-6th grade
in Realistic Fiction (Location: A09-01A)
By the Shores of Silver Lake
Little House Series #5
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
from HarperCollins
Realistic Fiction/Pioneers for 3rd-6th grade
1940 Newbery Honor Book
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
By the Shores of Silver Lake
Little House Series #5
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
from HarperCollins
Realistic Fiction/Pioneers for 3rd-6th grade
1940 Newbery Honor Book
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
By the Shores of Silver Lake - Audio Book (CD)
Little House Series #5
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
from HarperCollins
Realistic Fiction/Pioneers for 3rd-6th grade
1940 Newbery Honor Book
in Audio Books & Dramas (Location: APO-01A)
Cabin Faced West
by Jean Fritz
from Puffin Books
Historical fiction for 4th-6th grade
in Realistic Fiction (Location: A09-01A)
California Gold Rush
by May McNeer
from Random House Books for Young Readers
for 4th-6th grade
in California Gold Rush (Location: B01-14D)
California Gold Rush
Landmark #6
by May McNeer & Lynd Ward
from Random House
for 5th-8th grade
in American Landmark Books (Location: A10-04D)
Captain Bayley's Heir
by G. A. Henty
from Robinson Curriculum
Historical Fiction for 6th-10th grade
in G. A. Henty Books (Location: A05-04A)
Captain Bayley's Heir
by G. A. Henty
from Robinson Curriculum
Historical Fiction for 6th-10th grade
in G. A. Henty Books (Location: A05-04A)
Captain, My Captain
by Deborah Meroff
from Inheritance Publications
Historical Fiction for 8th-10th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Captive Treasure
by Milly Howard
from Bob Jones University Press
Realistic Fiction for 2nd-5th grade
in BJU Journey Books & Booklinks (Location: B10-02D)
Carolina's Courage
by Elizabeth Yates
from Bob Jones University Press
Historical Fiction for 3rd-6th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Carry On, Mr. Bowditch
by Jean Lee Latham
from Houghton Mifflin
Biography for 5th-9th grade
1956 Newbery Medal winner
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Catan Histories: Settlers of America
by Klaus Teuber
from Mayfair Games Inc.
for 7th-Adult
in Settlers of Catan Series (Location: CGA-02A)
Chang's Paper Pony
An I Can Read Book Level 3
by Eleanor Coerr
from HarperCollins
for Kindergarten-2nd grade
in I Can Read Books (Location: CPB-04B)
$2.99
Child's Day
Historic Communities
by Bobbie Kalman & Tammy Everts
from Crabtree Publishing
for 1st-7th grade
in Pioneer & Frontier Life (Location: B01-15C)
Children of the Covered Wagon
by Mary Jane Carr
2nd edition from Christian Liberty Press
Historical Fiction for 3rd-5th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
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