Era of Good Feeling was a time of increased nationalism and prosperity for the nation;
however, debates over several important issues created a crack in the outward appearance
of harmony during President Monroe's two terms.
Using the documents and your knowledge of this time period, assess the validity of this statement.
| . . .
.We owe it therefore, to candor and to the amicable relations existing between the United
States and those powers to declare that we should consider any attempt on their part to
extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and
safety. . . .
. . . .Our policy in regard to Europe, which was adopted at an early stage of the wars which have so long agitated that quarter of the globe, nevertheless remains the same, which is, not to interfere in the internal concerns of any of its powers; to consider the government de facto as the legitimate government for us; to cultivate friendly relations with it, and to preserve those relations by a frank, firm, and manly policy, meeting in all instances the just claims of every power, submitting to injuries from none. But in regard to these continents circumstances are eminently and conspicuously different. It is impossible that the allied powers should extend their political system to any portion of either continent without endangering our peace and happiness; nor can anyone believe that our southern bretheren, if left to themselves, would adopt it of their own accord. . . .
The Monroe Doctrine (1823)
considered the bill this day presented to me entitled An act to set apart and pledge
certain funds for internal improvements, and which sets apart and pledges funds for
constructing roads and canals, and improving the navigation of water courses to
facilitate, promote, and give security to internal commerce among the several States, and
to render more easy and less expensive the means and provisions for the common defense, I
am constrained by the insuperable difficulty I feel in reconciling the bill with the
Constitution of the United States to return it with that objection to the House of
Representatives, in which it originated.
Madison's Veto of Bonus Bill, from
Messages and Papers,
| . . . . The
first question made in this cause is, has Congress the power to incorporate a bank?
. . . . In disscussing this question, the counsel for the State of Maryland have deemed it of some importance, in the construction of the constitution, to consider that instrument not as eminating from the people, but as the act of sovereign and independent States. The powers of the general government, it has been said, are delegated by the States, who alone are truly sovereign; and must be exercised in subordination to the States, who alone possess supreme dominion.
. . . The government of the Union, then (whatever may be the influence of this fact on the case), is emphatically and truly a government of the people. . . .
This government is
acknowledged by all to be one of enumerated
Among these enumerated powers, we do not see that of establishing a bank or creating a corporation. But there is no phrase in the instrument which, like the articles of confederation, excludes incidental or implied powers; and which requires that everything granted shall be expressly and minutely described. . . .
Although, among the enumerated powers of government, we do not find the word 'bank,' or 'incorporation,' we find the great powers to lay and collect taxes; to borrow money; to regulate commerce; to declare and conduct a war; and to raise and support armies and navies. . . .
C.J. Marshall, Mc'Culloch v. Maryland (1819)
| That the
further introduction of slavery or involuntary servitude be prohibited, except for the
punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall be duly convicted; and that all children of
slaves, born within the said state, after the admission thereof into the Union, shall be
free but may be held to serivce until the age of twenty-five years. . .
That, in all that territory ceded by France to the United States, under the name of Louisiana, which lies north of thirty-six degrees and thirty minutes north latitude, excepting only such part thereof as is included within the limits of the state contemplated by this act, slavery and involutary servitude, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall be and is hereby forever prohibited. . . .
The Missouri Compromise (1819-1821)
|That from and after the first of
July next, all the public lands of the United States, the sale of which is, or may be
authorized by law, shall, when offered at public sale, to the highest bidder, be offered
in half quarter sections. . . .
That credit shall not be allowed for the purchase money on the sale of any public lands. . . .
. . . .The price at which the public lands shall be offered for sale, shall be one dollar and twenty-five cents an acre. . . .
Land Law of 1820 (April 24)
| Having duly
considered the bill entitled An act for the preservation and repair of the Cumberland
road, it is with deep regret, approving as I do the policy, that I am compelled to
object to its passage and return the bill to the House of Representatives, in which it
originated, under a conviction that Congress do not possess the power under the
Constitution to pass such a law.
A power to establish turnpikes with gates and tolls, and to enforce the collection of tolls by penalties, implies a power to adopt and execute a complete system of internal improvement. . . .
Monroe veto of Cumberland Road Bill (May 4, 1822)
| I see nothing
but men and factions without caring whether government shall be well or badly
administered, the country exalted or disgraced, or anything but the fulfillment of
personal views and passions: and they call this an abatement of party spirits, a
reconciliation of parties, a species of political millennium.
Albert Gallatin, Gallatin Papers (November 26, 1824)
Vote in the U.S. House of Representatives on the Tariff of 1816