the movement for statehood 1845 1846

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: WISCONSIN—A CONSTITUTION OF DEMOCRACY2 The political revolution of 1828 opened a period of twelve years in which the Mississippi Valley, speaking through the Jacksonian organization, controlled the destinies of the United States. The movement saw itself as a revolt of the people against autocracy and aristocracy; it was in fact an uprising of the frontier against the older communities. In the long run, as in every such revolt, it reached conclusions which it sought to perpetuate in the form of constitutional law. Its democratic aspirations were mingled, almost beyond disentanglement, with the zeal of a new community for easy wealth, and with the resentment of a debtor frontier against the agencies of capital and law. But it left upon American constitutional law an impress that lasted for two generations. The constitutional contributions of Jacksonian democracy are not to be measured by changes in the constitution of the United States. That document had received its basic interpretation before the deaths of James Madison and John Marshall, in the middle thirties. Although many Democrats and many southerners professed themselves to believe that the supreme court and the federal government were overriding the state and the citizen, Jacksonian democracy had little quarrel with the theory of nationalism. The frontier was the home of the Democrats; it had been the field of the activities of the nation. It accepted the legal doctrines of nationalism in the forties and fifties, and confined its own constitutional development to a readjustment of its local institutions. The propositions for amendment to the federal constitution were most numerous in matters of detail covering the appointment, removal, and pay of public servants, and none on these or other topics was ratified between ...
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