The Louisiana purchase is one of the most important events in United States history. Some historians even refer to it as one of the greatest land deals of all time. But before that, let’s understand a little bit more about the people who lived in the land that was sold.
Who Are The People Living There?
At the time of the Louisiana purchase, many Native Americans lived on this land now known as The United States. They include:
The Creeks (now called Muskogees) settled in Georgia and Alabama along central and southern sections of the coastal plain.
The Choctaws settled in Mississippi, Tennessee, and Kentucky.
The Chickasaws settled primarily in Alabama and western Tennessee.
The Choctaws primarily lived in Louisiana and Mississippi.
While these people have different languages and cultures, they share one thing: They all migrated from lands further north sometime between 1000 B.C. and A.D. 1000.
Because these Native Americans have learned to live with the land, they can survive by hunting, fishing, farming, making pottery, and building homes of mud or bark before Europeans ever set foot on their lands.
What Was The Louisiana Purchase?
The Louisiana Purchase was a land deal between the United States and Frances. On April 30, 1803, the United States agreed to pay approximately 15 million dollars for more than 800,000 square miles of land west of the Mississippi River. The land that was sold stretched from New Orleans up to Montana. At the time, these were some of the cheapest lands in the United States because no one had any interest in living on them.
How Did The Louisiana Purchase Come About?
The Louisiana Purchase deal came about through a series of events. First, there was concern among Americans that Napoleon, who controlled France at the time, planned to use the Louisiana Territory as a way of hurting the United States. He had already sent troops into the territory without permission from President Thomas Jefferson. Feeling threatened, President Jefferson decided that it would be a good idea to buy New Orleans and West Florida from France before they were taken by force.
Jefferson began negotiating with the French but was not getting far. It seemed that Napoleon wanted to sell the whole territory, while President Jefferson only wanted New Orleans and a small strip of land near the Mississippi. Both sides were firm in their positions because both thought they would get the better end of the deal.
Napoleon realized, however, that it would be much easier to sell the whole territory instead of just part of it. So, he offered to sell the United States all 828,000 square miles for $15 million a 1.3 cents per acre deal.
Jefferson quickly accepted because his main priority was saving money rather than how much land he would buy. He knew that 1.3 cents an acre was a good deal, and he also knew that everyone was fearful of the powerful French.
When Was The Louisiana Purchase?
The Louisiana Purchase took place on April 30, 1803. Though, negotiations started in October 1802. Although it saved President Jefferson from calling up the army and ended up being one of his greatest achievements as president, Jefferson didn’t think the Louisiana purchase would have an impact on the United States or its government.
However, he quickly realized that this was not true. The Louisiana Purchase doubled the country’s size and changed it from an Atlantic Ocean nation to a large, sprawling land across North America.
How Did The Louisiana Purchase Affect The World?
The Louisiana purchase had an impact on the United States in many ways. First, it nearly doubled the size of the U.S., which meant that Americans were no longer confined to just the East Coast. Instead, they could settle all across the country from one coast to another. It was significant for future expansion plans because there was so much land that people didn’t know what to do with it.
The Louisiana purchase also allowed for the development of new waterways, which connected cities up and down the Mississippi River. When these waterways were connected, trade along the river increased dramatically, which allowed Americans to grow more crops than ever before. With higher crop yields came an increase in cash, and that meant that people were free to trade more goods.
The purchase of Louisiana allowed for fascinating settlement opportunities in places like Kansas, Oklahoma, and Colorado. These states are still important to the United States today.
Finally, the Louisiana Purchase had an impact on countries around the world. For example, Great Britain was so upset about this deal that they nearly went to war with the United States. The British were afraid that Napoleon, their old foe, would use Louisiana to attack them. In the end, however, France and Great Britain signed a peace agreement which ended their conflict for good.
The Louisiana purchase is relevant to everyone because it is a significant event in American history. Without this land deal, the United States would be a different place today, and probably not nearly as powerful.