The Nation Takes Shape

The Nation Takes Shape by Marcus Cunliffe published by the University of Chicago Press 1789-1800 Bobby Earl Ms. C. Love February 12, 1998 The period of time from 1789 to 1839 was an age of growth for the United States of America; the United States grew bigger and better in general, it expanded into the West, and its commerce and industry also grew substantially. This is in part because of the great political leaders such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Andrew Jackson, but also in part of growing national pride and the yearning to become a successful nation. America grew larger and improved greatly in the first half century of its life. The territory of the United States tripled in size as America bought large amounts of property from other nations, and the number of the states in the Union doubled. The population doubled twice from around four million people to almost sixteen million people, and by the year 1840 rolled around. American exports also quadrupled in size to about $80 million dollars in profit. The national debt from earlier years was completely paid off in this time period; a feat that has not been accomplished since. An Army and Navy were established to protect the country, and judiciary, legislative, and executive departments of the government were formed with the ratification of the Constitution of the United States of America. Transportation became much easier in America by 1840. Approximately 2500 miles of canals and 3000 miles of railroads had been constructed. Harbors, lighthouses, and dry docks had also greatly increased in number to aid the seafarers. In the first fifty years of its history, almost all parts of America grew enormously, from schools to post offices to forts. America was a becoming a stronger nation in a world of giants. Another area of American growth was the West. As the Constitution was being signed, virtually n…

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