School Improvement in Maryland

Lesson Seeds: The lesson seeds are ideas for the indicator/objective that can be used to build a lesson. Lesson seeds are not meant to be all-inclusive, nor are they substitutes for instruction.

Standard 5.0 History

Topic B. Emergence, Expansion and Changes in Nations and Empires

Indicator 2. Evaluate the importance of Jacksonian Democracy and how it represented a change in the social, political and economic life of the United States

Objective b. Analyze how tariff policy and issues of states' rights influenced the development of political parties and prompted sectional differences

As a Democratic-Republican, Andrew Jackson defended states’ rights during the presidential campaign of 1828, but once in office his actions and policies regarding states’ rights were often contradictory. When he left office, Jackson urged the nation to put the interests of the federal union above those of individual states or geographic regions. To explore this shift, have students read paragraph four of Jackson’s first inaugural address: “In such measures as I may be called on to pursue in regard to the rights of the separate States I hope to be animated by a proper respect for those sovereign members of our Union, taking care not to confound the powers they have reserved to themselves with those they have granted to the Confederacy.” Discuss the meaning of this statement with regard to Jackson’s position on states’ rights. Next, have students read Jackson’s Farewell Address, found at'sFarewell.html . Ask students to describe Jackson’s opinion on the relation of the federal union to the states as expressed in this speech. Does Jackson believe the needs of the Union or the desires and needs of the individual states or sections are of more importance? Ask students to consider what might have prompted this shift in Jackson’s thinking, emphasizing the Nullification Crisis and the duty of a president to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

Resources for Objective 5.B.2.b:
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