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Oregon Country

Oregon Country

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Oregon Country

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  1. Oregon Country • Oregon Country was a tree-covered wilderness stretching from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. • The U.S. and Britain both claimed ownership but agreed for a time to a peaceful “joint occupation” of Oregon.

  2. Discovering OregonLewis & Clark • America’s claim to Oregon was based on the Lewis and Clark expedition, which President Jefferson had ordered after the Louisiana Purchase. • Jefferson wanted them to explore the Louisiana Territory to see exactly what the U.S. had just purchased from France. • Between 1804 and 1806, Meriwether Lewis and William Clark led a small band of explorers to the Oregon coast.

  3. WHY we wanted it: Oregon Fever • The first American settlers to travel to Oregon were missionaries. While they were unable to convert many Oregon Indians to Christianity, their reports of Oregon’s fertile soil and abundant forests soon attracted more settlers. • Early settlers described it as a “pioneer’s paradise” • In 1843 about 1,000 pioneers packed their belongings into covered wagons and headed for Oregon. • A year later, the number of pioneers headed for Oregon doubled.

  4. What action should the United States take? Write your choice and explain your answer. • Annex all of Oregon to the United States and risk war with Britain. • Offer to sell Oregon to Britain in order to increase the money in the United States Treasury. • Make a treaty with Britain agreeing to divide Oregon between the two countries.

  5. HOW we got it: All of Oregon or Half? • President James K. Polk was a strong believer in Manifest Destiny and he had played a key role in Texas becoming part of the U.S. • He also would determine the fate of Oregon Country. • Polk agreed to a treaty with Britain • Oregon was divided roughly in half at the 49th parallel.

  6. WHY we wanted California and New Mexico and who owned it…Mexican Cession • After gaining Texas and Oregon, President Polk wanted the huge areas of California and New Mexico as well– either through purchase or war. • He sent a representative to Mexico to try and buy the territories, but Mexican officials refused even to see him. • After Texas became part of the U.S., Polk sent General Zachary Taylor to defend the Texas-Mexican border in case Mexico tried to take it back.

  7. War Breaks Out in Texas • The annexation (taking) of Texas by the U.S. upset Mexico, believing it to be an act of war. • In addition, Texas and Mexico had never agreed on a border. • On April 25, 1846 Mexican soldiers fired on American troops who were patrolling the Rio Grande, killing or wounding sixteen Americans. • Polk used the incident as an excuse to go to war.

  8. War Breaks Out in Texas • At the time, American President Polk stated that Mexico “has invaded our territory and shed American blood on American soil.” • Mexican President Mariano Paredes (on the bottom left) saw it differently, declaring that a greedy people “have thrown themselves on our territory . . . The time has come to fight.”

  9. What action should the United States take? Write your choice and explain your answer. • Apologize for invading Mexico, offer to buy California and New Mexico, and accept the Nueces River as the border between Texas and Mexico. • Demand that Mexico recognize the Rio Grande as the border of Texas and cede (give up) California and New Mexico to the United States. • Annex (add) all of Mexico to the United States

  10. The Fall of New Mexico • A few months after declaring war, General Stephen Kearny led his army into New Mexico and captured it without firing a shot.

  11. The Fall of California • Meanwhile, a group of Americans led by the explorer John C. Fremont launched a rebellion against Mexican rule in California. • They arrested and jailed the Mexican commander of Northern California. • Then they raised a crude flag showing a grizzly bear sketched in blackberry juice. • They declared California the Bear Flag republic.

  12. The United States Invades Mexico • At this time, General Zachary Taylor pushed into Mexico, capturing the Mexican city of Monterrey. • General Santa Anna marched north to meet Taylor with an army of 20,000 Mexican troops. • The two forces battled in February 1847 near a ranch called Buena Vista. • The fighting was fierce but General Santa Anna was eventually forced to make a retreat.

  13. HOW we got it: The United States Invades Mexico • A month later, American forces led by General Winfield Scott landed at Veracruz in southern Mexico. • Over the next six months, Scott’s army would fight their way to Mexico City, the capital of Mexico. • Scott’s army captured Mexico City in September 1847.

  14. The United States Invades Mexico

  15. HOW did it end? The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo • In 1848, Mexico and the U.S. signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the war. • In the treaty, Mexico agreed to give up Texas and a vast region known as the Mexican Cession (about half of the country).

  16. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo • This area included the present-day states of California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico, as well as parts of Colorado and Wyoming. • In exchange, the U.S. agreed to pay Mexico $15 million and promised to protect the 80,000 to 100,000Mexicans living in Texas and in the Mexican Cession. $15 million

  17. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

  18. The Gadsden Purchase: WHY we wanted it and WHO owned it • In 1853, the U.S. acquired more land from Mexico in the Gadsden Purchase. • James Gadsden arranged for $10 million south of the Mexican Cession so railroad builders could build a railroad through it. • Many Americans were pleased with the new boundaries of the nation, but others believed the U.S. had bullied its weaker neighbors to take their land. • The war with Mexico changed many Americans’ ideas about the Manifest Destiny…it now had a darker side. Gadsden Purchase

  19. What does each shaded region represent? (See if you know all six).

  20. Check Your Answers: