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US History – Jackson and Federal Power, 1824-52

5. Why the Whigs Should Not Be Forgotten

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In this module, we take a closer look at the Whig Party and why they should not be forgotten. Jackson’s Democratic Party stood for three key ideologies: (i) equal rights among white men; (ii) limited government; and (iii) territorial expansion. The Whigs stood in opposition to this, finding themselves in opposition to Jackson on a number of key issues. But while the Whigs disagreed with Jackson on policy they appreciated his tactics. By the election of 1840, they were using the same tactics of mass politics during their presidential campaigns.


In this course, Professor Sean Adams (University of Florida) examines the presidency of Andrew Jackson and how it relates to federal power in the United States. With this in mind, the course seeks to explain the causes and effects of the continuing policy debates about the role of the federal government from 1800 to 1848. We start by looking at Andrew Jackson and the rise of the Democratic Party - the first modern political party in the United States. We then turn to look at the Nullification Crisis and Jackson’s response. After this, we examine Native American removal and how Jackson used it to restrict citizenship. We then turn to Jackson’s involvement in the Bank War of 1832-6. In the final two modules we look at the arrival of the Whig Party and the issue of slavery.


Professor Sean Adams is the Hyatt and Cici Brown Professor of History at the University of Florida. He specialises in the history of American capitalism, as well as the history of energy. He is the author of a number of books on 19th century US History including - Home Fires: How Americans Kept Warm in the 19th Century (Johns Hopkins, 2014); Old Dominion, Industrial Commonwealth: Coal, Politics, and Economy in Antebellum America (2004); The American Coal Industry, 1789-1902 (2013); A Companion to the Era of Andrew Jackson (2013); and The Early American Republic: A Documentary History (2009).

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APA style

Adams, S. (2021, October 26). US History – Jackson and Federal Power, 1824-52 - Why the Whigs Should Not Be Forgotten [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Adams, S. "US History – Jackson and Federal Power, 1824-52 – Why the Whigs Should Not Be Forgotten." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 26 Oct 2021,

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