Shaping Of The United States Of America - Settling American Old West - - Indian Wars - - American Civil War - Europe - - World - - Technology
1800's When studying history, it is important to remember that one of the countries that went through the largest transformation in the 1800's was the United States Of America. Just a quick look at some of the events occurring during the century makes you realize how different America was at the start of the century compared to the end of the century. The events that shaped that transformation include
(1) America evolves after the American Revolution which gained Independence from the British (1775 to 1783)
(2) Purchase of Louisiana (1804)
(3) Texas Joins The Union (1845)
(4) American Civil War (1861–1865)
(5) The Indian Wars (ran for over 200 years ending in 1890)
(6) Statehood, the creation of most of the States that exist today (28 States Created)
(7) American Old West Settled
We should also remember that some of the best known Military Leaders attained almost star quality in their countries. For example, Nelson and the Duke of Wellington (Arthur Wellesley) in Britain and Napoleon in France.
Under the watchful eye of Queen Victoria, by the end of the 1800's "The British Empire" controlled nearly 1/4 of the world's population.
The invention and first use of technology from the 1800's is also integral to our lives today. Steam locomotives, the battery, photography, sewing machines, pasteurization, dynamite, the telephone, first practical car using internal-combustion engine and Coca Cola are just a few examples.
Shaping of The United States Of America in the 1800's
Louisiana PurchaseFollowing the end of the American Revolution, The United States purchased France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. This territory was larger than just the present-day state of Louisiana and included all of present-day Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, plus part of what are now Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, New Mexico, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado and Louisiana. The total land mass was 828,800 square miles for a total cost of 15 million dollars. (At the time, this doubled the size of the United States, but today it is about 1/4 of the country's total size.)
Texas Joins United StatesTexas became an independent Republic in 1836 after the Texas Revolution from Mexico led by Sam Houston. It was admitted to the Union as the 28th state in 1845, and became the largest state in the Union at that time (Alaska is larger in area).
Alaska Is Purchased From Russia (1867)The northwestern tip of the North American continent was purchased from Russia Empire by America in 1867. Its 586,412 square miles cost $7.2 million which meant the US was paying roughly two cents per acre of land.
California and New Mexico Become a Part Of The United StatesFollowing the defeat of Mexico in the Mexican-American War (1846 to 1848), Mexico sold California and New Mexico to the United States in exchange for $15 million.
StatehoodFollowing the end of The American Revolution, 16 states were created prior to 1800. During the next 100 years, a further 29 would be created bringing the total to 45.
- Delaware (1787)
- Pennsylvania (1787)
- New Jersey (1787)
- Georgia (1788)
- Connecticut (1788)
- Massachusetts (1788)
- Maryland (1788)
- South Carolina (1788)
- New Hampshire (1788)
- Virginia (1788)
- New York (1788)
- North Carolina (1789)
- Rhode Island (1790)
- Vermont (1791)
- Kentucky (1792)
- Tennessee (1796)
- Ohio (1803)
- Louisiana (1812)
- Indiana (1816)
- Mississippi (1817)
- Illinois (1818)
- Alabama (1819)
- Maine (1820)
- Missouri (1821)
- Arkansas (1836)
- Michigan (1837)
- Florida (1845)
- Texas (1845)
- Iowa (1846)
- Wisconsin (1848)
- California (1850)
- Minnesota (1858)
- Oregon (1859)
- Kansas (1861)
- West Virginia (1863)
- Nevada (1864)
- Nebraska (1867)
- Colorado (1876)
- North Dakota (1889)
- South Dakota (1889)
- Montana (1889)
- Washington (1889)
- Idaho (1890)
- Wyoming (1890)
- Utah (1896)
Settling the American Old WestJust over 200 years ago, shortly after the Louisiana Purchase, the Lewis and Clark Expedition (1804–1806) set out to discover the resources now available on the West Coast of the American continent. Following the end of the Civil war and forcing Native Americans to relocate to Reservations, tens of thousands of settlers set out to seek fame and fortune in the west traveling for weeks and months through hostile environments to settle vast areas of the country.
Indian WarsThe Indian wars date back to the time of the first settlers, but after the end of The American Revolution and the British ceding a vast amount of Native American territory to the United States, the wars became more focussed. Many Native American Tribes had sided with the British so retribution combined with a need for more land for settlers, discovery of Gold and a general need for expansion meant the tribes were doomed. In the beginning, the national government initially sought to achieve this by purchasing Native American land in treaties, but as some Native American Leaders began to organize and fight against the loss of their heritage the use of force increased. In 1830, Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act which basically took the lands that the United States wanted to expand into away from the Native American Indians. This forced them to relocate to other areas that the US did not consider as desirable. Some of the worst fighting during the century occurred in the most desirable areas for farming, ranching and Gold and included Florida, California, Texas, Colorado, Oregon and Utah. The tribes who did survive ended up in the 310 Indian reservations often in arid areas unsuitable for agriculture in the United States (There were originally over 500 Native American Tribes).
American Civil War
Depending on where you are from, your view of the causes of the Civil War might be different,
so I will try to concentrate on the facts.
Eleven Southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America, also known as "the Confederacy". Following the creation of the Confederacy both sides began to form large armies and atrocities and wrongs were committed on both sides including the murder of civilians. Some of the few facts that should be noted are that about 10 percent of all Northern males 20–45 years of age died, and 30 percent of all Southern white males aged 18–40 died. The war remains the deadliest war in American history, resulting in the deaths of 620,000 soldiers and an unknown number of civilians (For comparison, World War II had approximately 406,000 U.S. deaths, World War I had approximately 116,500 U.S. deaths, and World War I had approximately 1,357,800 French deaths). Following a number of heavy defeats and the Union's decision to use total war (utter defeat of Confederate forces and their economic base including destroying homes, farms, and railroads) the Confederacy surrendered in 1865.
Events In Europe
Like America, Europe was a continent in turmoil during the 1800's with wars being fought at sea and on
land. The main combatants were Britain, Russia, Austria, Prussia, Spain and France with possibly the best known of the sea battles "The Battle Of Trafalgar" between the British Royal Navy
led by Admiral Nelson and the combined forces of the French and Spanish. Like many sea battles during the period the British were heavily outnumbered but due to the combination of
leadership and better trained gun crews, they were victorious.
But in mainland Europe the French forces under the leadership of Napoleon were equally successful with defeats over the Russia and Spain expanding French influence. But, Napoleon met his match at the Battle Of Waterloo in 1816 (Belgium) against combined forces of the United Kingdom, Russia, Austria and Prussia led by the Duke of Wellington.
Queen Victoria became the British Queen in 1837 leading to the Victorian Era. The Victorian Era was a period of industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military progress that included further growth and influence of "The British Empire." This also included taking control of India and obtaining one of her many titles the "Empress of India."
Events Around The WorldArgentina gained independence from Spainin 1816, India comes under British Rule and becomes part of the British Empire, Britain continues its building and control of the British Empire around the world including Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Afghanistan, New Zealand, South Africa, Egypt. In its heyday, during the late 1800's and very early 1900's, under the rule of Queen Victoria the British Empire controlled one-quarter of the world's population and a quarter of the Earth's total land area.
Agricultural RevolutionThe 1800's provided the inventions and improvements in Farm Machinery to change farming from an extremely labor intensive industry to technology driven. The creation of Combine Harvesters which took three separate operations (reaping, binding, and threshing) and combined them into one, traction engines/tractors, and vastly improved plowing and planting machines led to increased automation. Increased automation allowed for cultivation on an ever greater scale. These improvements also led to decades of extensive farming without crop rotation, fallow fields, cover crops or other techniques to prevent erosion and were one of the contributing factors to the Dust Bowl years of the 1930's (Combined with severe drought).
Technology 1800'sThe 1800's were an important time in our history and many of the most important pieces of technology that we rely on today were first invented in this century. Not only were these inventions important, but the names associated with those breakthroughs are still in use today. Here are just a few from the list below: Electric Light, Photography, Revolver, Pasteurization, The Telephone, First Car using internal combustion engine (Here we are nearly 150 years later still using the same basic principle), Coca Cola (No longer using Cocaine as important ingredient), Sewing Machine and Contact Lenses. Some of the names associated with these important breakthroughs: Singer, Goodyear, Dunlop, Pasteur, Benz, Colt, Gatling, and many others.
Inventions -- The Year Invented, Inventors, and Country (or attributed to First Use)
Ultraviolet Radiation Discovered ----- 1801 Germany by Johann Ritter
First Electric light ----- 1809 Britain by Humphry Davy
First Steam Locomotive ----- 1814 England by George Stephenson
Photograph ----- 1814 France by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce
Mackintosh (Waterproof Raincoat) ----- 1823 Scotland by Charles Mackintosh
Typewriter ----- 1829 USA by W.A. Burt
Braille printing ----- 1829 France by Louis Braille
Sewing Machine ----- 1830 France by Barthelemy Thimonnier
Sewing Machine ----- 1851 USA by Isaac Singer (Not inventor, but he added Improvements that made the machine much more usable)
Mechanical Calculator ----- 1835 England by Charles Babbage
Revolver ----- 1836 USA by Samuel Colt
Morse Code ----- 1838 USA by Samual Morse
Rubber Vulcanization ----- 1839 USA by Charles Goodyear
Safety Pin ----- 1849 USA by Walter Hunt
Pasteurization ----- 1856 France by Louis Pasteur
Machine Gun ----- 1861 USA by Richard Gatling
Dynamite ----- 1866 Sweden by Alfred Nobel
Telephone ----- 1876 Scotland by Alexander Graham Bell
Photographic Film ----- 1884 USA by George Eastman
Car with Internal-Combustion Engine ----- 1885 Germany by Karl Benz
Coca Cola ----- 1886 USA by John Pemberton
Contact Lenses ----- 1887 Germany by F.E. Muller and Adolph Fick
Pneumatic tire ----- 1888 USA by John Boyd Dunlop
Zipper ----- 1893 USA by W.L. Judson