By John Ferling
It was once a competition of titans: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, heroes of the innovative period, as soon as intimate neighbors, now icy antagonists locked in a fierce conflict for the way forward for the us. The election of 1800 was once a thunderous conflict of a crusade that climaxed in a impasse within the Electoral university and resulted in a problem within which the younger republic teetered at the fringe of cave in.
Adams vs. Jefferson is the gripping account of a turning element in American background, a dramatic fight among events with profoundly assorted visions of the way the country could be ruled. The Federalists, led by way of Adams, have been conservatives who favorite a robust significant govt. The Republicans, led by way of Jefferson, have been extra egalitarian and believed that the Federalists had betrayed the Revolution of 1776 and have been backsliding towards monarchy. The crusade itself was once a barroom brawl every piece as ruthless as any glossy contest, with mud-slinging, scare strategies, and backstabbing. The low aspect got here whilst Alexander Hamilton published a devastating assault on Adams, the top of his personal social gathering, in "fifty-four pages of unremitting vilification." The stalemate within the Electoral collage dragged on via dozens of ballots. Tensions ran so excessive that the Republicans threatened civil battle if the Federalists denied Jefferson the presidency. eventually a mystery deal that modified a unmarried vote gave Jefferson the White condo. A devastated Adams left Washington ahead of sunrise on Inauguration Day, too embittered even to shake his rival's hand.
With magisterial command, Ferling brings to existence either the outsize personalities and the hotly contested political questions at stake. He exhibits not only why this second used to be a milestone in U.S. historical past, yet how strongly the issues--and the passions--of 1800 resonate with our personal time.
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Extra info for Adams Vs. Jefferson: The Tumultuous Election of 1800 (Pivotal Moments in American History)
Even as Jefferson’s vision of liberty, like Madison’s, came to depend on the prospect of territorial expansion, both men continued to harbor some anxiety about the dangers of overextension. , that they would fall out of its orbit entirely, “separating from our confederacy and becoming its enemies,” as he put it. ”24 Even after the Louisiana Purchase formally incorporated the territory west of the Mississippi into the United States, the probÂ�lem of establishing real American sovereignty—the probÂ�lem signaled by Jefferson’s fear of breakaway Western republics—remained a pressing one.
33 It was the same story with the Choctaw. 34 Jackson’s metaÂ�physÂ�ics of expansion and removal were echoed by his frequent poÂ�litÂ�iÂ�cal antagonist Henry Clay in an 1825 exchange with John Quincy Adams: “They [are] destined to extinction. Â€. ”35 Of the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, which presaged the final removal of the Choctaw from Mississippi, General Edmund Gaines wrote: “[It] acted as a bomb thrown among them. It filled them with surprise, astonishment, excitement, grief, and resentment.
The lived landscape of the Mississippi Valley was a palimpsest of prior, conÂ�flicting claims. Spanish, French, and British land Â�titles were interspersed and overlaid amid military land bounties of as-Â�yet-Â� unsurveyed land provided by various states to their soldiers. Exclusive title rights, traded to those among the Choctaw who were willing to sign away the common claims of their people in the “Treaty” of Dancing Rabbit Creek, gave these unscrupulous few the right to allotment claims, which were to be located before the land was put on sale.
Adams Vs. Jefferson: The Tumultuous Election of 1800 (Pivotal Moments in American History) by John Ferling