Our Public Debt: An Historical Sketch with a Description of United States Securities

By Harvey E. Fisk | Go to book overview

CHAPTER V
Financing Deficits and The Mexican War

THE period which elapsed between 1837 and 1861 was one of the most eventful in the history of our country.

Politically, the old controversy between those who respectively upheld the doctrines of state rights and of nationalism crystalized more and more about the question of slavery. The tariff and the management of the public finances were causes for much debate and bad blood in and out of Congress.

The great influx of immigrants and the incidental settlement of the middle and far west developed a new nation, very different in its view point from that of the generation which was passing off the stage. This development followed naturally the introduction of steam navigation and steam railroads and in turn led to a great extension of these facilities. The new inventions in the industrial field brought about the factory system and the concentration of population in towns and cities. The electric telegraph transformed the methods of communication. There was, too, a great intellectual and spiritual awakening. Social reforms were everywhere in progress.

During this time the war with Mexico was fought and our southwestern boundaries established. California, one of our acquisitions from Mexico, was soon a powerful state, because of the discovery of gold within her borders. With the exception of the trouble with Mexico, our foreign relations were amicable. It was during this period that all matters in con

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