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United States Buys Land from Spain

The Creeks and their allies, the Seminoles, murdered some white settlers, so Monroe sent troops southward to bring them to order. The leader of this force, General Jackson, was such a hard fighter that he soon drove the Indians back into Florida. There, finding the Spaniards had helped them, he burned a few small towns… Read More

Problems With Treaty of Paris

In 1781, several years before Congress took possession of the western lands, the states had all signed “Articles of Confederation,” a system of federal government proposed in 1776. But as this system did not give Congress power to impose taxes, make trade laws, secure money enough to pay government expenses, or make people obey the… Read More

Tippecanoe

It was during President Madison's first term that war broke out. Ever since the beginning of the Revolutionary War, the British had secretly excited the Indians against the Americans. This was easy to do, because the Indians were already angry at the rapid advance of the settlers. In 1800, so many Americans had gone to… Read More

Free versus Slave States

We have seen how Oregon became a part of our country. It was settled mostly by people opposed to slavery, so that it came in as free soil. But the Southerners had already asked that Texas be allowed to join the Union as slave soil. Many people wished thus to keep the balance even. Eight… Read More

Kansas Becomes A Free State

It was in 1861 that Kansas joined the Union as a free state, and the thirty–fourth star was added to our flag. In mentioning Old Glory, Senator Charles Sumner once spoke these words, which every American citizen should remember: “The stripes of alternate red and white proclaim the original union of thirteen states to maintain… Read More

Battle of New Orleans

Although a treaty of peace was being arranged with Great Britain, a British army under General Pakenham now set out to seize New Orleans and Louisiana. But when this officer landed near the mouth of the Mississippi, he found General Jackson there ready to meet him. And when a British officer loudly boasted that he… Read More

Zachary Taylor

In 1849 General Zachary Taylor became twelfth President of the United States. He had served in the War of 1812, and had won many friends by his victories–in Mexico. All who fought there with him admired him greatly, and affectionately called him “Old Rough and Ready.” But, the year after his inauguration, Taylor died, and… Read More

One Million Dollars Paid to Pirates

For many years these pirates had attacked any vessel they met in the Mediterranean. Generally it was only to demand a certain sum of money, but if the captain either could not or would not pay it, they often sank the vessel after robbing it, or towed it into one of their harbors, where they… Read More

Don’t Give Up The Ship

Not long after the death of Lawrence, Oliver H. Perry, a young naval officer on Lake Erie, sailed out to meet a British squadron with his nine small and roughly built vessels. Perry, who had never been in a real naval battle before, finding himself face to face with one of Nelson's officers, determined to… Read More

British Shells Baltimore

Not content with burning Washington, the British next attacked Baltimore, where they shelled Fort McHenry for more than twenty–four hours. When their ships first drew near the fort, some Americans came on board with a flag of truce, to arrange for an exchange of prisoners. But fearing that these men would betray their plans, the… Read More