It was based on the belief of cultural and racial superiority over other nations and the obligation to bring civilization and enlightenment to other races. The phrase "Manifest Destiny" was coined by the journalist John O'Sullivan in 1845. The phrase "Manifest Destiny" is most frequently associated with the massive territorial expansion of the United States over just fifty years from 1803 to 1853 and its westward expansion to the Pacific Ocean.
Manifest Destiny for kids: Divine Obligation
Manifest Destiny for kids: John O'Sullivan
John O'Sullivan used the phrase 'Manifest Destiny' again in his newspaper, the New York Morning News, December 27, 1845 stating that the United States had the right to claim: "...the whole of Oregon. 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."
Manifest Destiny Timeline and Facts for kids
1775–1783: Victory in the American War of Independence (1775–1783) saw the U.S. acquisition of first 13 colonies in the east from the British
1783: The Treaty of Paris ends the American Revolutionary War and establishes the early U.S. boundaries
1800: The religious revival movement called the Second Great Awakening reignites the religious fervor of Americans
1803: The Louisiana Purchase of lands from France extends US lands from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains between the Gulf of Mexico and the Canadian border
1804: The Lewis and Clark Expedition explore and maps the US lands obtained in the 1803 Louisiana Purchase
1807: The Steamboats of the 1800's started to appear on western rivers
1812: The War of 1812 resulted in a stalemate but the ability of the US to engage in warfare with Great Britain resulted in the people of America to think of itself as a unified and strong nation.
1813: The Creek War (1813–1814) resulted in U.S. victory over Creek Native Indians resulting in the vast cession of their lands in Alabama and Georgia
1817: The economic plan advocated by Henry Clay, called the American System, was established creating a subsidized transportation infrastructure of new roads and canals
1817: Construction on the 363 mile Erie Canal begins allowing the passage of boats inland carrying produce and passengers from Atlantic Ocean to Lake Erie
1818: The 1818 Convention and Treaty with the British establishes the border with Canada at the 49th Parallel
1819: The Florida Treaty aka the Adams Onis Treaty sets out the boundary between the US and New Spain (now Mexico)
1820: The Land Act of 1820 led to the future confiscation of land from Native Americans and lower cost lands for settlers in the west
1821: The 900 mile Santa Fe Trail, one of America's great trade routes, opened running from Independence, Missouri, to Santa Fe (now New Mexico).
1828: The Stourbridge Lion was the first operational locomotive on an American railroad - refer to Railroads in the 1800s
1843: The first Important migration of settlers traveled together along the 2000 mile Oregon Trail in Wagon trains
1844: First telegraph line and the Morse Code is sent by Samuel Morse from Washington to Baltimore
1845: Congress passed a "Joint Resolution for Annexing Texas to the United States" refer to Texas Annexation
1845: John O’Sullivan initiates the phrase 'Manifest Destiny'
1846: The Oregon Treaty settled the lands south of the 49th parallel as a United States possession
1849: The first conflicts of the Apache Wars (1849 -1924) erupted in the Southwest
1853: The Gadsden Purchase acquires territory in Arizona and New Mexico
1854: The Sioux Wars (1854 - 1890) break out in South Dakota, Minnesota and Wyoming. Their leaders include Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull
1860: The Pony Express was a mail-delivery system and the most direct means of east–west communication before the telegraph was established
1862: The Homestead Act of 1862 encouraged 600,000 families to travel westwards by giving them land (usually 160 acres) almost free
1867: Alaska was purchased from Russia in 1867 for $7.2 million refer to the Purchase of Alaska
1869: The Transcontinental Railroad was completed joining the eastern and western halves of the United States
1872: The Manifest Destiny Painting called American Progress "Spirit of the Frontier" was painted by John Gast
1876: The Battle of Little Bighorn when General George Custer and the 7th Cavalry were defeated by Native American warriors led by Chief Sitting Bull
1898: The Annexation of Hawaii ends the Manifest Destiny Timeline but the idea was rooted in the nation and led to the rise in Nativism in America
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