Andrew Jackson was a wealthy American property owner, soldier, judge, and later, president of the United States of America. Jackson was born in the Waxhaws region of the colonial Carolinas on 15th March ,1767 (Braund, 2017). Jackson was of Scottish-Irish descent as his family had emigrated from Ulster, Northern Ireland (Braund, 2017). Jackson was brought up by his mother as his father died a few weeks before his birth in a logging accident. Under the persuasion of their mother, Elizabeth Hutchinson, Andrew Jackson together with his siblings, Hugh and Robert, joined the Revolutionary War (1775-1783) to fight for American independence (Braund, 2017). Jackson lost both his brothers and mother in the Revolutionary War; he blamed England for his loss. Andrew Jackson died on 8th June, 1845, from heart-related problems and is buried in his ranch, the Hermitage, located in Tennessee.
Entry into Public Service
At the end of the Revolutionary War in 1783, Andrew Jackson sought formal education in various local schools in the Waxhaws region. After completing his education, Jackson became a saddle-maker before deciding to become a teacher in a local school in Waxhaws before moving to Salisbury, North Carolina (Mackenzie, n.d.). In Salisbury, Andrew Jackson met attorney Spruce Macay who trained him on matters law and politics. Jackson’s mastery of the law lamded him an appointment as a prosecutor in the Northern District of Northern Carolina (Mackenzie, n.d.). In 1794, Jackson partnered with lawyer John Overton to start a law firm specializing in matters of land claims. Jackson advocated for the expulsion of both the Cherokee and Chickasaw from their original land in Tennessee. Jackson’s efforts were noted by William Blount, one of the most powerful men in Nashville, Texas, who helped him become the attorney general (AG) of Tennessee.
As the AG of Tennessee, Jackson continued advocating for his hard stance against the indigenous Indian occupation of Texas. Jackson’s militant stand on the Indian land issue made him quite popular with the local white population in Tennessee. Leveraging his influence in the region, Jackson was elected both as the U.S. Representative and Senator of Tennessee. On March 4, 1829, Jackson successfully defeated his main rival Quincy Adams to become the seventh president of the U.S. (“Pursuing the Presidency,” n.d.). Jackson’s presidency came to an end on March 4, 1837, after eight years in power upon which he retired to the Hermitage.
Andrew Jackson’s Historical Significance
Andrew Jackson is remembered for his role in the fight for American independence and the expansion of America’s territory. Jackson first fought for America against the British in the Battle of Hanging Rock where he and his brother were captured as prisoners of war. Later, in his adult life, Jackson fought in the Creek War (1813-1814) winning the Battle of Horseshoe Bend (Barber & Williams, n.d.). The victory enabled America to gain possession of both present-day Alabama and Georgia. Andrew Jackson also commanded American forces in the First Seminole War, which led to America’s annexation of present-day Florida from Spain. As president, Andrew Jackson strongly advocated for the unity of America and fiercely condemned secessionist ideas, especially from South Carolina.
President Andrew Jackson’s successes were tarnished by his Indian Removal Act of 1830. The act resulted in the forceful removal of indigenous Indians from their original homelands to the government-created Indian reserves. The Indian Removal Act sanctioned the illegal and inhumane removal of the Indians from their homeland and resulted in the death of thousands of natives.
“Pursuing the Presidency: 1822-1837: Andrew Jackson Timeline, 1767-1845: Articles and Essays: Andrew Jackson Papers: Digital Collections: Library of Congress.” The Library of Congress. Retrieved from www.loc.gov/collections/andrew-jackson-papers/articles-and-essays/andrew-jackson-timeline-1767-1845/pursuing-the-presidency-1822-1837/
Barber, E. & Williams, A. ed., “Speech at Brentham,” March 31, 1861, in The Writings of Sam Houston (Austin: Jenkins, 1970), 8: 295-299.
Braund, K. (2017). Summer 1814: The Treaty of Ft. Jackson ends the Creek War (U.S. National Park Service). Retrieved from https://www.nps.gov/articles/treaty-of-fort-jackson.htm
Jackson Andrew • Instagram. Retrieved from https://www.instagram.com/a.n.d.r.e.w_jackson/.
Mackenzie, G. C. (n.d.). “The Battle of Horseshoe Bend–Determining the Facts 3.” National Parks Service, U.S. Department of the Interior. Retrieved from www.nps.gov/nr/twhp/wwwlps/lessons/54horseshoe/54facts3.htm.