Age of Jackson

By, Kailen, Ravyn, Danielle

Early life

Andrew Jackson was born on March 15, 1767. His parents were Scots-Irish colonists Andrew and Elizabeth Hutchinson Jackson, Presbyterians who had emigrated from Ireland two years earlier. Jackson's father was born in Carrickfergus, County Antrim, in current-day Northern Ireland, around 1738. Jackson's parents lived in the village of Boneybefore, also in County Antrim.

When they emigrated to America in 1765, Jackson's parents probably landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They would have traveled overland down through the Appalachian Mountains to the Scots-Irish community in the Waxhaws region, straddling the border between North and South Carolina. They brought two children from Ireland, Hugh (born 1763) and Robert (born 1764).

His Presidency

Throughout his two terms in office, lasting eight years, Jackson made approximately 70 treaties with native American tribes both in the South and the Northwest. Jackson's presidency marked a new era in Indian-Anglo American relations initiating a policy of Indian removal. Although Jackson advocated the humane treatment and removal of Northwest and Southern Indian tribes his Indian policy was encumbered by ethnocentrism and paternalism. Jackson himself sometimes participated in the treaty negotiating process with various Indian tribes, though other times he left the negotiations to his subordinates. The southern tribes included the Choctaw, Creek, Chickasaw, Seminoleand the Cherokee. The northwest tribes include the Chippewa, Ottawa, and the Potawatomi. Though conflict between Indians and American settlers took place in the north and in the south, the problem was worse in the south where the Indian populations were larger. Indian wars broke out repeatedly, often when native tribes, especially the Muscogee and SeminoleIndians, refused to abide by the treaties for various reasons. The Second Seminole War, started in December 1835, lasted over six years finally ending in August 1842 under President John Tyler.

Though relations between Europeans (and later Americans) and Indians were always complicated, they grew increasingly complicated once American settlements began pushing further west in the years after the American Revolution. Often these relations were peaceful, though they increasingly grew tense and sometimes even violent, both on the part of American settlers and the Indians. From George Washington to John Quincy Adams, the problem was typically ignored or dealt with lightly; though by Jackson's time the earlier policy had grown unsustainable. The problem was especially acute in the south (in particular the lands near the state of Georgia), where Indian populations were larger, denser, and more Americanized than those of the north. As such, there had developed a growing popular and political movement to deal with the problem, and out of this developed a policy to relocate certain Indian populations. Jackson, never one known for timidity, became an advocate for this relocation policy in what is considered by some historians to be the most controversial aspect of his presidency.This contrasted from his immediate predecessor, President John Q. Adams, who tended to follow the policy of his own predecessors, that of letting the problem play itself out with minimal intervention. Jackson's presidency thus took place in a new era in Indian-Anglo American relations, in that it marked federal action and a policy of relocation. As such, during Jackson's presidency, Indian relations between the Southern tribes and the state governments had reached a critical juncture.

March 15, 1767-June 8, 1845.