In the settlement of America we have to observe how European life entered the continent, and how America modified and developed that life and reacted on Europe. He would be a rash prophet who should assert that the expansive character of American life has now entirely ceased. In short, at the frontier the environment is at first too strong for the man. The English, on the contrary, are no sooner in possession of a place than the game is driven away. Little by little he transforms the wilderness, but the outcome is not the old Europe, not simply the development of Germanic germs, any more than the first phenomenon was a case of reversion to the Germanic mark.
Limiting our attention to the Atlantic coast, we have the familiar phenomenon of the evolution of institutions in a limited area, such as the rise of representative government; the differentiation of simple colonial governments into complex organs; the progress from primitive industrial society, without division of labor, up to manufacturing civilization. The Germans in New York pushed the frontier of settlement up the Mohawk to German Flats. But what constitutional historian has made any adequate attempt to interpret political facts by the light of these social areas and changes? In this advance, the frontier is the outer edge of the wave— the meeting point between savagery and civilization. In part this is due to Indian resistance, in part to the location of river valleys and passes, in part to the unequal force of the centers of frontier attraction. Notes Since the meeting of the American Historical Association, this paper has also been given as an address to the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, December 14, 1893. Missionary Activity The most effective efforts of the East to regulate the frontier came through its educational and religious activity, exerted by interstate migration and by organized societies. Since the days when the fleet of Columbus sailed into the waters of the New World, America has been another name for opportunity, and the people of the United States have taken their tone from the incessant expansion which has not only been open but has even been forced upon them.
Due to the practice of slavery in the south, in my opinion, encouraged and developed racism towards African Americans, whom the southerners and others found inferior. As seaboard cities like Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore strove for the mastery of Western trade, so the various denominations strove for the possession of the West. In the settlement of America we have to observe how European life entered the continent, and how America modified and developed that life and reacted on Europe. The fall line marked the frontier of the seventeenth century; the Alleghanies that of the eighteenth; the Mississippi that of the first quarter of the nineteenth; the Missouri that of the middle of this century omitting the California movement ; and the belt of the Rocky Mountains and the arid tract, the present frontier. In a speech on the dedication of the Calhoun monument Mr.
The unstable diplomacy between the United States and Soviet Union and the roots of the Cold War began with mutual distrust and fear between the United States and Soviet Union. The end of the first quarter of the century saw the advance of the Scotch-Irish and the Palatine Germans up the Shenandoah Valley into the western part of Virginia, and along the Piedmont region of the Carolinas. Many a State that now declines any connection with the tenets of the Populists, itself adhered to such ideas in an earlier stage of the development of the State. For a moment, at the frontier, the bonds of custom are broken and unrestraint is triumphant. Having now roughly outlined the various kinds of frontiers, and their modes of advance, chiefly from the point of view of the frontier itself, we may next inquire what were the influences on the East and on the Old World.
The experience of the Carolina cowpens guided the ranchers of Texas. The effects of the struggle of the landed and the landless States, and of the ordinance of 1787, need no discussion. Stand at Cumberland Gap and watch the procession of civilization, marching single file—the buffalo following the trail to the salt springs, the Indian, the fur-trader and hunter, the cattle-raiser, the pioneer farmer—and the frontier has passed by. Line by line as we read this continental page from West to East we find the record of social evolution. All along the coast from Maine to Georgia the Indian trade opened up the river courses.
As has been indicated, the frontier is productive of individualism. Osgood, in an able article, has pointed out that the frontier conditions prevalent in the colonies are important factors in the explanation of the American Revolution, where individual liberty was sometimes confused with absence of all effective government. The New England preacher and school-teacher left their mark on the West. What is true for New England is, as would be expected, even plainer for the rest of the colonies. The contest for power and the expansive tendency furnished to the various sects by the existence of a moving frontier must have had important results on the character of religious organization in the United States.
The frontier army post, serving to protect the settlers from the Indians, has also acted as a wedge to open the Indian country, and has been a nucleus for settlement. In the period of the Revolution the frontier crossed the Alleghanies into Kentucky and Tennessee, and the upper waters of the Ohio were settled. Why was it that the Indian trader passed so rapidly across the continent? The disposition of the public lands was a third important subject of national legislation influenced by the frontier. In the Virginia convention of 1829—30, called to revise the constitution, Mr. The frontier individualism has from the beginning promoted democracy. The effects of the struggle of the landed and the landless States, and of the Ordinance of 1787, need no discussion.
His bill for that purpose passed both Houses of Congress, but was vetoed by President Jackson, who, in his annual message of December, 1832, formally recommended that all public lands should be gratuitously given away to individual adventurers and to the States in which the lands are situated. Mobility of population is death to localism, and the western frontier worked irresistibly in unsettling population. In this connection mention should also be made of the government military and exploring expeditions in determining the lines of settlement. The pioneer needed the goods of the coast, and so the grand series of internal improvement and railroad legislation began, with potent nationalizing effects. Mobility of population is death to localism, and the western frontier worked irresistibly in unsettling population.
On the relation of frontier conditions to Revolutionary taxation, see Sumner, Alexander Hamilton, Ch. In short, it was a region mediating between New England and the South, and the East and the West. Each expedition was an epitome of the previous factors in western advance. The settlements from the sea to the mountains kept connection with the rear and had a certain solidarity. It is quite immaterial whether he ever becomes the owner of the soil. It is evident that the unifying tendencies of the Revolutionary period were facilitated by the previous cooperation in the regulation of the frontier.