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Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson was a military general in the War of 1812. He
was a war hero. He was nicknamed, “Old Hickory”, because he was
very strong like a hickory tree.
In 1824, Jackson first ran for president. His opponent was
John Quincy Adams, who was the son of John Adams. John Quincy
Adams grew up very wealthy and many Americans could not relate to
him. In this election Jackson won the popular vote. Neither
candidate won the majority of the electoral votes. When
neither candidate wins the majority of the electoral vote,
the House of Representatives decides who becomes
president. Henry Clay who was the Speaker of the House,
helped get Adams elected. This election became known as
the “corrupt bargain”.
1. What was the “Corrupt Bargain”?
Andrew Jackson ran for president again in 1828 and this time he won. Jackson
connected with ordinary/common Americans especially from the west and south.
In his inauguration speech, Jackson’s supporters said the election was a victory
(win) for the common man.
Jackson replaced many government officials with people who supported him. He
openly defended this by saying it was helping democracy by getting new people
involved in government. This practice of giving supporters government jobs is
known as the spoils system.
2. What was the spoils system?
When Andrew Jackson became president more than 100,000 Native Americans
lived east of the Mississippi River. The Cherokees had adopted some American
customs. Some could speak and read English. They had their own constitution and
claimed to be a separate nation. In 1825 and 1827, the state of Georgia passed a
law forcing the Creeks and Cherokees to give up their land and move west. Georgia
said the Cherokees were not a separate nation and had to give up their land.
The Cherokee Nation filed a lawsuit. In Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, the court
said the Native Americans had to move, but in Worchester v. Georgia, the Supreme
Court ruled that the Cherokee could stay. President Jackson wanted the Native
Americans to be removed. He did not support the decision of Worchester v.
Georgia. He did not follow this decision and instead helped Congress pass the
Indian Removal Act of 1830. This law gave Jackson the power to move all Native
Americans west of the Mississippi River.
3. What was the result of Worchester v. Georgia?
4. What was the Indian Removal Act of 1830?
The Indian Removal Act of 1830 forced Native
Americans to move west to Oklahoma. The
Cherokees were forced to move hundreds of
miles. They had very little food and shelter.
This removal took place during the winter. Due
to the harsh (hard) conditions over 4,000 Native
Americans died. This became known as the Trail of Tears.
5. What was the Trail of Tears?
Jackson disliked the National Bank. He felt it only helped the wealthy. The
National Bank needed to be re-chartered. Jackson vetoed the charter for the
National Bank.
6. Why did Jackson dislike the National Bank?