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JOHN QUINCY ADAMS' ADMINISTRATION.
Manufactures and Internal Improvements. Indian Lands in Georgia.
Death of the ex-Presidents Thomas Jefferson and John Adams.-Free
The new President invited able and experienced men to CHAP: form his cabinet, at the head of which was Henry Clay, as Secretary of State. This administration was one of 1825. remarkable prosperity ; the nation was gradually advancing in wealth and happiness, gaining strength at home, and securing more and more of the respect of nations abroad. Every branch of industry was increasing in prosperity ; agriculture, commerce, and manufactures.
Numerous companies had been formed for the purpose of making iron nails, and also for the manufacture of 1815. broadcloths, though the latter were soon involved in ruin by “a deluge of English cloths.” In those days fine wool was worth a dollar and a half a pound, while badly made broadcloth cost from eight to twelve dollars a yard.
The wars of Europe opened a wide field for enterprise in the carrying trade. American genius and art produced the style of ship known as the clipper. These far outstripped all others in sailing ; they made rapid voyages, and, what was important in those days, they were able very often to evade the French and English cruisers. At first, the United States had but little of their own products
CHAP: to send to the old world, but presently Eli Whitney in
vented the cotton-gin, by which the seed was separated 1793. from the cotton, and that gradually became the most im
portant article of export.
The great National Road—the work of the General Government-extending across the Alleghany Mountains, from Cumberland, Maryland, to Wheeling, on the Ohio,
and to be continued to the Mississippi, had just been 1820. completed, at an expense of one million seven hundred
thousand dollars. It was commenced in Jefferson's administration, and had been fourteen years in building. Its beneficial effects upon the country were very great, in thus connecting the valley of the Ohio with the seaboard.
A still more important work was also finished-the 1825. Erie Canal, uniting the Hudson and the waters of the
great lakes. It was the work of the State of New York, and was completed after a labor of eight years. The project was at first deemed visionary and impracticable; but owing principally to the energy of De Witt Clinton, privately, as well as a member of the Legislature and as Governor, the work was carried through. The completion and success of these improvements encouraged the con
struction of others in various parts of the Union-one, 1832. the Ohio Canal, from Lake Erie to the Ohio river. The
first railway was the Quincy, in Massachusetts, designed 1827. to transport granite to the sea-shore. The first locomo
tive used in the United States was on the Hudson and 1832. Mohawk Railroad.
A difficult question arose in relation to the removal of the Creeks and the Cherokees, from their lands in Georgia and Alabama, to the region beyond the Mississippi. Georgia claimed jurisdiction over the Indians within her
territory Originally claiming the region west of her 1802. boundary, she ceded it to the United States, on condition
that the latter should, by purchase, extinguish the title
DEATH OF EX-PRESIDENTS JEFFERSON AND ADAMS.
of the Indian lands reserved within her own limits. The CHAP.
XLVII. national government promised to fulfil its part of the agreement " as early as the same could be peaceably ob- 1825. tained on reasonable terms." Twenty-five years had passed, and these titles had not been purchased. The Indians were not willing to sell their territory. However, a treaty bad been recently made by some of the chiefs, who ceded the lands, but the great majority of the Indians declared these chiefs had no authority to sell the property of the nation. Thus, according to the original contract, the national government could not extinguish the Indian titles.
The government cancelled this treaty, but the State of Georgia determined to enforce it. The latter sent surveyors into the Indian country, to divide the lands into portions suitable for farms, before distributing them by lottery to the citizens of the State. The Federal government took the part of the poor Indians, and the President proclaimed that he would enforce the laws committed to his trust, while Troup, the bellicose Governor of Georgia, wrote to the Secretary of War: “From the first decisive act of hostility, you will be considered and treated as a public enemy." The matter for the present was adjusted by the Creeks consenting to dispose of their lands, and to emigrate. Rather than be thus harassed they were willing to remove from their happy homes, and give up their hopes of civilization.
This year was marked by the deaths of two distinguished men, whose names are identified with the history of the government_John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Both were men of liberal education, and both chose the profession of the law ; both had been consistent and strenuous advocates of national independence, and were upon the committee which proposed that famous declaration. The one drew it up, and the other was its most efficient supporter ; both signed it ; both had been
on foreign missions ; both were first Vice-Presidents, and
then became Presidents. “They ended their earthly 1826. career at the same time and in the same way; in the
regular course of nature, in the repose and tranquillity of retirement, in the bosoms of their families, on the soil which their labors had contributed to make free,” and within a few hours of each other, on the fiftieth anniversary of American independence.
A certain William Morgan, of Western New York, a member of the society of Free Masons, suddenly disap
peared, he having been seized and forcibly carried off. Sept. He had proposed to publish a book revealing the secrets
of the order, some of whose members were charged with his murder. The affair created a great excitement, which led to the formation of a political party, whose avowed object was to exclude Free Masons from office. In several of the States the party polled a large number of votes, but in a year or two it disappeared.
The manufacturing interests were still laboring to sustain themselves against foreign competition. The sentiment prevailed, especially in the northern States and in some of the southern, that measures should be taken to protect the industry of the nation. In accordance with this view, a convention of delegates from twenty-two
States of the Union assembled at Harrisburg, in PennsylJuly, 1827. vania. Four of the slave States did not send delegates.
The Convention memorialized Congress to grant protection to American industry ; to impose a tariff on imported goods, sufficiently high to shield American producers of the same articles from the ruinous effects of foreign competition ; and they also asked that this policy should be fixed, and thus give stability to the enterprise of the country. Capital would not be invested in domes. tic manufactures, if they were liable at any time to be ruined either by the combination of foreign competitors
or by change of policy at home. The people of New CHAP. England had complained of these changes. Their climate and soil forbade their becoming rivals of their sister States 1828. in agriculture, and their industry had been turned into other channels, especially those of commerce and the fisheries. Upon them had fallen nearly all the losses inflicted by the cruisers of France and England, and yet they had been more discouraged and had suffered more loss by the embargoes and other restrictions of their own government. During this period, the central position of New York had been gradually drawing to herself much of the commerce and shipping that once belonged to Boston. A territory so extensive, and climates so diverse, brought into existence many kinds of industry that were liable to be injured or ruined by foreign competition. At first New England was opposed to the policy of protection, and the Middle and Southern States were in its favor. Now this was reversed. New England had been forced to adapt her industry to the change of national policy, while the South had changed her views.
Said Webster, when this bill was under discussion in Congress : “New England held back and labored to restrain the General Government from the adoption of this policy, but when it was adopted she then adapted herself to it, and turned herself to manufactures, but now just as she is successful, another change is to be brought about, and she set adrift in another direction.”
The South, on the other hand, expected to reap the 'harvest, not merely from the exports of the raw material, but also a due share of the profits arising from manufactures. She was disappointed in seeing northern towns becoming cities, and southern cities decaying; the North a money lender, the South a borrower. Before the Revolution she was pre-eminently the richest part of the colonies, a. position which she fully expected to retain after that period. Hers were the only exports from the