Andrew Jackson Conference on American Identity

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Andrew Jackson was the first elected president in the United States history born into humble circumstances. Precedence of previous politicians was from family lineage, education, and wealth. Shortly after the birth of Jackson in March 16, 1767, his father died leaving himself and two brothers under the impoverished guardianship of his mother in Waxhaw, South Carolina.

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His family situation was none of wealth and attended school at the town meeting-house. When Jackson was little over thirteen years of age, he saw his first battlefield during the Revolutionary war in the battle of Hanging Rock on August 6, 1780. Shortly after the war ended, in 1784 Jackson sold his property in Waxhaw and started for Salisbury, North Carolina with the view of preparing himself for the practice of law. After moving to the frontier of Tennessee, Jackson turned to lawyering and was very sought after. From lawyering, Jackson became a Senator in 1797.

When the war of 1812 was. Unleashed between the United States and Britain, Jackson enlisted and eventually became a Major General. General Jackson led the U.S. to victory in The Battle of New Orleans, forever making him an American hero and won a place in the hearts of the American people. This is where he obtained the nickname Ol’ Hickory in reference to his strength and toughness, just like the wood of a hickory tree. His popularity and American identity from the war enabled Jackson to run for president in 1824 and he won majority of 41 percent of votes but lost to John Quincy Adams. This didn’t stop him though, in 1829 he again ran for president as a populist appealing to the average American and was elected as the seventh president of the United States. The period of Jackson’s presidency was composed of great change and debate of slavery, Indians, Westward Expansion; also known as the Jacksonian period or the Era of the Common Man. Those that opposed ‘King Andrew’ thought he had too much ruling power; he was very controversial. Jackson dealt with anti-banking, egalitarian principles.

While Jackson was not born into wealth or education, white skin and male gender gave him a great advantage in society. The Democratic party appealed to calm the slavery issue by placating southern worries while resisting extreme proslavery demands.

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