Monroe's Presidential Rule: a Proper Soil for the Seed of Nationalism and Sectionalism to Grow

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During the Era of Good Feelings, both nationalism and sectionalism increased greatly. According to the most common view of this period of time, the years of Monroe were full of also optimism, and goodwill because the Federalists had faded. When this occurred the Republicans dominated politics in each section of the nation. The beliefs of both nationalism and sectionalism developed concurrently, however sectionalism seemed to have a greater importance in the economics and politics of the period.

The period of time when James Monroe was the President was a time when the nation became excited about the prospects of expanding westward and now had very little interest in European affairs. This gave the people of the United States time to focus on their own problems and gave them time to developed pride in the nation after the victory from the War of 1812. Many people gave toasts and wrote poems that expressed how much they loved the United States. People such as Stephen Decatur and Joseph Rodman Drake were people who believed nationalism was and important factor towards putting the country in the right direction for success. Along with people who wrote poems about the United States, other important figures in history such as Henry Clay preached to Congress in hope to advance the nation’s economic growth through what he called, the American System. One of the main goals was to promote economic aid to each of the sections in the United States.

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With respect to sectionalism in the United States during the Era of Good Feelings, it to also grew and had a great impact on the economy and politics in the nation. The sectionalism in the country was the harsh dispute over Missouri’s admission to the Union in 1820, which was fought out over the states’ rights and economic issues. As stated by John Quincy Adams, he believed that the Missouri Compromise should have been terminated in a convention of the states to revise and then amend the Constitution. He said that by doing so it would have created another new union of about thirteen or fourteen states that should be without slavery. However, Adams said that if slavery was not permitted in this new union, then the question upon whether or not it should exist at all was then brought up. Based on Jefferson’s outlook on the Missouri Compromise and sectionalism itself, it angered him because if one line was drawn that coincided with certain principles, then every new frustration would go deeper and deeper. Overall, if Missouri came into the United States as a slave state, then it would unbalance politics into the favor of the South. Also, Missouri was the first part of the Louisiana Purchase so apply for statehood and therefore people from the North and the South were worried about the status of other new territories that would come from the Louisiana Purchase.

To conclude, it is easy to find that the Era of Good Feelings was a time of great nationalism and sectionalism throughout the nation based on certain events that occurred. When the War of 1812 was over and the United States was victorious there was a great sense of optimism throughout the entire nation. However after the Louisiana Purchase, sectionalism was brought into the picture and because of this it changed the economy and also the politics of the nation. There were numerous disputes over what to do about states in the new territory applying for statehood. Based on this information, one can find that sectionalism had the greatest importance during the Era of Good Feelings.

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