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Manifest Destiny

  • Date Submitted: 03/23/2010 03:42 PM
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History 1301
*Define Manifest Destiny and Explain* its results.
Manifest Destinywas a term used in the 1840’s which was the historical belief that the United States is destined, even divinely ordained, to expand across the North American continent, from the Atlantic seaboard to the Pacific Ocean. Sometimes Manifest Destiny was interpreted so widely as to include the eventual absorption of all North America: Canada, Mexico, Cuba and Central America. Advocates of Manifest Destiny believed that Americans were the chosen people and expansion was not only good, but that it was the destiny of america "Manifest Destiny" eventually became a standard historical term, sometimes used as a synonym for the expansion of the United States across the North American continent which the belief inspired or was used to justify.
In July 1845, amidst all the agitation over getting Texas into the Union, editor John L. O'Sullivan of the United States Magazine and Democratic Review wrote an editorial in which he denounced other nations who had "the avowed object of thwarting our policy and hampering our power, limiting our greatness and checking the fulfillment of our manifest destiny to overspread the Continent allotted by Providence for the free development of our yearly multiplying millions." This was probably the first use of the phrase "manifest destiny,"; thereafter it was used to encourage American settlement of European colonial and Indian lands in the Great Plains and the west and, more generally, as a justification of building an American empire. It was revived in the 1890s, this time with Republican supporters, as a theoretical justification for U.S. expansion outside of North America. The term fell out of usage by U.S. policy makers early in the 20th century, but some commentators believe that aspects of Manifest Destiny, particularly the belief in an American "mission" to promote and defend democracy throughout the world, continues to have an influence on...


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