This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Expansion Of The West Essay

1663 words - 7 pages

During late seventeen hundreds and the early eighteen hundreds America focused on growth and development. In 1803, America bought from France 828,000 square miles of land that ranged from the Mississippi to the Rockies for the bargain price of $15,000,000. This pristine land had not yet been ravaged by the rigorous process of growing cotton, so Southern farmers were excited about the prospect. However, most farmers were also afraid of what lay in the West, be it “savages,” dangerous wildlife or inhospitable terrain. The government believed that American citizens needed convincing that travelling west, settling and stabilizing this new land was a smart thing to do. To help convince the populace, the government turned to a new media, photography. The product of this invention astounded and perplexed many viewers who believed that the photos they saw depicted the absolute truth. Their ignorance of the selective bias of photographers paved the way for rumors and myths that influenced many to venture into dangerous areas, having little idea what really lay ahead. Photography in the early American West was a manipulative tool of the government’s interest by portraying the West as a safe land filled with opportunity.
Many Americans believed that they were entitled to the vast land that their government had just purchased and even more land to the west of it. One reason was the incredible sense of superiority that the Americans felt in their own virtue and their superior form of government. Another reason was that the Americans thought that the native Americans didn't appreciate the land that they occupied and that the Americans should liberate it, making the land more useful and productive. These reasons were all based in the ideology of "Manifest Destiny." Democratic Review editor John O' Sullivan was the first to use this idea of Manifest Destiny, "And that claim is by the right of our manifest destiny to overspread and to possess the whole of the continent which Providence has given us for the development of the great experiment of liberty and federated self-government entrusted to us" (O'Sullivan). American leaders took hold of this concept and used it to justify expansionism.
Although not all parties of government in the eighteen hundreds believed in Manifest Destiny, the Democrats won elections championing the concept and were eager to employ photographers to further their cause. Some Democratic supporters saw money-making opportunities in exploiting western resources and wanted to encourage migration to make their dreams possible. A few photographers dared venture into the wilderness for the sake of art but others travelled westward to photograph for pay. Three of the more famous photographers who journeyed toward the West under contract were Timothy O' Sullivan, Carleton Watkins, and Andrew J. (AJ) Russell. These three photographers all depicted different, but appealing, features of the West.
Timothy O' Sullivan photos developed his...

Find Another Essay On Expansion of the West

Expansion of the Caribbean Essay

1164 words - 5 pages During the period of 1640-1690 the expansion of the Caribbean “economy, was made possible by the expansion of the European colonisation over the Atlantic. However Africans were captured for slave trade to sustain the development of sugar industry, through slave labour to produce sugarcane.” (Grouchier & Walton, 1629: 418-420). The scramble for Africa brought about gender inequality within the African society, the European invasion in the

The Expansion of Microsoft Essay

996 words - 4 pages have a strategic effect by limiting the number of competitors for Microsoft's other products or by eliminating the need for extra companion products. Microsoft's new technology often excludes or impedes the involvement of other software manufacturers and lays the groundwork for future expansion by Microsoft. Microsoft Windows is a good platform that, like anything else, could be better, but it continues to promote and expand the 90% market share

Settlement of the West

663 words - 3 pages “The existence of an area of free land, its continuous recession, and the advance of American settlement westward explains American development”. (PBS n.d.) By saying this Frederick Jackson Turner helped increase critical thinking about the west and helped historians understand the causes and affects it produced in the United States now and back then. The settling of the west was a great significance in the United States’ culture as well as

Rise of the West

779 words - 4 pages explorers made was to find sea routes that went to East Asia, otherwise known as the Indies as Europeans called them. Christopher Columbus sailed west across the Atlantic Ocean to find a route that went to East Asia, but he landed in the Americas. The Europeans realized that he found what they called the “New World” and not East Asia . This age of exploration made European nations rush to claim lands in the Americas for themselves. Even though

Weirdoes of the West

1006 words - 5 pages territory until the Allied side was allowed to re-establish pre-war borders in 1918 (Stanford 1840). Following WWI, Romania went through a period of political instability due to Germany’s expansion policies before siding with Germany in WWII (Kurian). The Soviets forced Romania to surrender; Romania reentered the war on the Allied side but before the Peace Treaty had been put into effect, a communist party had formed and started to demonstrate

Expansion of the United States

630 words - 3 pages 15 million dollars. He signed 3 more treaties as well gaining a lot of land West of the Mississippi. In total, we received 820,000 square miles which comes out to approximately 3 cents an acre which was really an amazing deal. After the purchase, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were sent to explore the new land. This purchase was an important event in history because it was considered to be the largest territory gain kicking off the expansion

The Expansion of DSM Diagnoses

1139 words - 5 pages When I consider the expansion of DSM diagnoses from just over 100 to almost 300 over the short course of forty-odd years and an even more diagnoses being added, couple with diagnoses that are broader in their application blurring the lines of what is normal and what is abnormal when considering the behaviors of the individual client behaviors, it saddens me to no end and makes me wonder if the world is moving closer to insanity as a population

The Rise of the West

1449 words - 6 pages Over the past 50 years, the idea of the rise of the West has been closely re-examined. Prior to the 1950s, historians believed that the rise of the West occurred because it was destined to; because Europe is the best and strongest. It was luck, fate, and destiny that helped Europe and America reach where they are today. In the past 50 years, many historians begin to disagree. They do give credit to luck as being a factor in the rise of the West

The Decline of the West

917 words - 4 pages desire to write a book. In 1918, he published the first volume of his book, The Decline of the West, followed by the second volume in 1922. In his books, Spengler stated that western civilization was coming to an end because, like the human life cycle, it had gone through the growth phase and was now on a steady decline towards death. He also compared the decline to other previous civilizations, such ancient Greece and Rome, stating that the end

Spanish Settlement of the West

1472 words - 6 pages Louisiana. TheSpanish crown wanted a buffer between the French in Louisiana and centralMexico. The last corridor of expansion was in the west, through the sea,which led to the establishment of San Diego in 1769 and Los Angles in 1781.The Spanish were not the only European power to colonize the new world;French, English and the Dutch also settled North and South America. TheSpanish and the French settled what is present day U.S.-Mexico border region.The

Discovery of the Expansion of the Universe

1156 words - 5 pages with his discovery of the expanding Universe. From this discovery, we came to realize that at some point in the past, our Universe was very small, probably a tiny dot, then after the Big Bang, it started expanding. This was a big discovery, which changed the history of Physics. At the end, the paper also discusses - if our Universe will continue to expand or is there a limit? Expansion of the Universe Firstly, it is important to understand what

Similar Essays

Expansion In The West From 1840 1890

1416 words - 6 pages When an area is settled for the first time, there are certain things that shape the development of the land and the people who settle it. From the 1840's to the 1890's, the natural environment, among other things, shaped the development of the West beyond the Mississippi River and the lives of those who lived and settled there. Some examples of places that were shaped and/or affected by the natural environment are Texas, the Great Plains, the

The Economics Behind Drug Trafficking And Cartels In Mexico: A Study Of The Cartel’s Influence On Mexico And The Expansion To West Africa

3667 words - 15 pages drug cartels, as well as governmental involvement through the military. The number of deaths is so appallingly high, which shows how highly motivated these cartels are, and motivated to receive the enormous sums of money that comes from trafficking and selling drugs. They have become extremely powerful, and are now looking for ways to expand their business further, as any well-ran and successful organization will do. One area of expansion is in

Westward Expansion. Talks About People Moving West And Dealing What Natvies And The Harsh Weather

921 words - 4 pages alone in peace. In a way the film stereotypes most white men as mean and savage. The conflict was that the white man did not understand or care how the Indians lived. In not understanding or caring, progress and expansion of the west destroyed the traditions and way of life for most Native Americans.The film "The Searchers" is another great example of the Hollywood stereotype. In this case the stereotype comes true in how Native Americans and

The Perils Of Expansion Essay

914 words - 4 pages Rich with exotic scenes and characters, the westward expansion of the United States has long intrigued the storyteller. Often, inspired by this setting, he has chosen to write of gunfights and Indian raids, or of idealistic pioneers battling nature on the frontier’s edge. But there exists a far darker epic of the high plains and the dry deserts: that of a nation whose drastic expansion rent it apart. The grandiose and decisive policies of