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Historical Glossary

There are 48 entries in this glossary.
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Jackson, Andrew

(b. Waxhaw, S.C., 15 March 1767; d. near Nashville, Tenn., 8 June 1845)    He was wounded and captured in the Revolutionary War. In 1788 he moved to Tenn., where he opened a law practice and participated in the Spanish Conspiracy. He was elected the first Tenn. congressman (1796) and was sent to the Senate (1797). He became a national military hero for his victories in the Creek War, the first battle of New Orleans, and first Seminole War. In the 1824 election, he ranked first among the four candidates (with 43.1 percent of the ballots and 99 electoral votes), but was denied the presidency by the “ corrupt bargain.” Jackson beat Adams in 1828 with 56.0 percent of the popular vote, and defeated Clay in 1832 with 54.5 percent of the ballots. Jackson's enemies accused him of making appointments by the spoils system and ridiculed his advisors as a kitchen cabinet. As president, Jackson gave the Maysville road veto, resolved the nullification crisis, vetoed the second Bank of the United States's charter, issued the Specie Circular, and implemented Indian removal. 

Jackson, Thomas Jonathan (Stonewall)

(b. Clarksburg, W.Va., 21 January 1824; d. Guiney's Station, Va., 10 May 1863)    Having graduated from West Point in 1846, Jackson was cited for gallantry in the Mexican War, and left the army to teach at Va. Military Institute in 1852. Appointed CSA brigadier general in the Civil War, he earned the nickname “Stonewall” at the first battle of Bull Run, where he turned USA victory into defeat by holding firm long enough to allow CSA troops to counter-attack the advancing Federals. Jackson's Shenandoah Valley campaign was critical in forcing USA abandonment of the Peninsular campaign. His brigade figured prominently in the CSA victory at the second battle of Bull Run, and made the crucial attack that broke Union lines at Chancellorsville, where Jackson was accidentally killed by one of his own sentries. 

Jacksonian democracy

Also called Jacksonianism, this was a set of attitudes about representative democracy associated with Andrew Jackson. It exalted egalitarianism and equal opportunity to an extreme degree, and made them the standard for measuring candidates and issues. By idealizing the common man as the republic's bedrock, it encouraged political reforms that widened the franchise, made more offices elective, and stimulated an increase in voter turnout. 

Jackson’s victory at New Orleans

January, 1815 - A large British invasion force was repelled by Andrew Jackson’s troops at New Orleans. Jackson had been given the details of the British army’s battle plans by the French pirate, Jean Laffite. About 2500 British soldiers were killed or captured, while in the American army only 8 men were killed. Neither side knew that the Treaty of Ghent had ended theWar of 1812 two weeks before the battle. This victory inspired American nationalism.

James I

(b. Edinburgh Castle, Scotland, 19 June 1566; d. Theobalds, Middlesex, England, 27 March 1625)    He chartered the Virginia Companies of London and Plymouth to colonize Virginia, where Jamestown was named for him.