US History I/Pd. 9
23 March 2015
The Era of Good Feeling: The Effects and Consequences of Nationalism and Sectionalism In 1815, shortly before the start of James Monroe’s presidency and after the War of 1812, a historical period known as the “Era of Good Feeling” commenced in America. However, though the name of this age alone insinuated a time of unity and prosperity within the nation, sectionalism became an unequivocal dilemma that seeped through the government’s attempts in promoting nationalism, and ultimately divided the country. The Era of Good Feeling was a time where only one political party reigned, sense of unity prevailed, and national pride was evident within the citizens. This postwar nationalism fueled the country to work towards a common goal, and even encouraged creation of traditions that would be passed down generations. The McCulloch v. Maryland case in 1819 exhibits government’s attempt in putting up a unified front to further promote nationalism. In this case, the Congress’ power is questioned when the ruling prevented states from outlawing or taxing the national bank, as Maryland tried to do. The document states, “The power of the general government, it has been said, are delegated by the states, who alone are truly sovereign” (Document 4). However, the outcome of the case only came to show that the federal government had more power compared to the state government, and thus portrayed a stronger, unified system. In Document 3, people are portrayed to be celebrating Independence Day on the fourth of July within the same year of the case. This depicts the effect that national pride had, bringing together multiple races, genders, social classes, and age groups to celebrate the country’s ...
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