Podcast: The Age of Jackson | The Little Magician
By: American History Tellers
The economic growth of the 1830’s wasn’t equally distributed and led many to think they were being left behind – the gap between rich and poor was increasing.
The combination of new federal lands opened up by the forced relocation of the Indian tribes, the veto of the Second National Bank (which gave less regulated State Banks the ability to significantly relax their lending standards) caused a huge increase in loans for land speculation.
The Specie Circular was an executive order from Jackson that mandated federal lands could only be purchased by gold and silver. The price of both jumped and shortages developed.
The economy went into a depression that lasted for four years.
Martin Van Buren was elected essentially as Jackson’s third term and followed his policies closely. Despite his initial popularity, the economic problems soon led to his nickname being Martin Van Ruin
Because of this, Van Buren was easily defeated by William Henry Harrison in the election of 1840
Harrison only lived for 31 days after being elected and was succeeded by his vice president, John Tyler.
Tyler made the annexation of Texas a primary issue, and had to use some significant executive power overreach to sign a treaty with the independent state. The plan to admit Texas into the union as a slave state was highly conscientious, and lead to Tyler being in a situation where he was unable to run again, instead agreeing to drop out and support James K Polk in the election of 1840 if the Democrats supported the Texas annexation.