Andrew “Old Hickory” Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, was a military veteran and a ruthless politician. He rose to power on a wave of populist appeal, and was central in shaping early America. He quashed threats of succession, forced the relocation of Native Americans, and dismantled the national bank. His presidency, like many others, is important for students to study in order to understand how the United States continued to be shaped and how the actions taken during Jackson's presidency still affect the country today.
Jacksonian Democracy Lesson Plans - This storyboard details the causes and effects of Jackson's actions against the National Bank, an institution he believed catered to wealthy business owners yet left farmers and commoners out of the equation. Through his attacks and vetoes against the Second National Bank, Jackson instituted a more state-sovereigned banking system. Furthermore, he allowed speculation and inflation to grow wildly out of control. Before all was said and done, Jackson had helped invite a economic panic to the country, one that will not be resolved for years to come.
Veto of the Second Bank of the United States
Jackson's 'Pet Banks'
In 1832, Jackson vetoed a bill that would renew the charter of the Second Bank of the United States. A great opponent to the bank, Jackson saw the institution as one that favored the wealthy and went against the 'common man'.
The Bank favors the RICH!
As another attack on the National Bank, Jackson stopped depositing funds into federal banks altogether. Instead, he instituted a depository system where state banks received funds. His enemies called them Jackson's 'pet banks'.
In response to the overwhelming inflation and speculation crisis, Jackson issued an executive order forbidding purchase lands except through gold and silver specie. This, in turn, led to a great demand for bank notes to be redeemed by gold and silver.
Outcome / Effects
By vetoing the Second Bank, Jackson beganhis 'war' against the bank. Many saw this as an attempt to foment class warfare and generate support from the common folk. This move increased his popularity and helped secure the election in 1832.
Jackson's stance against the bank was solidified, however, his pet banks allowed wild inflation and speculation to take place. Soon, crisis ensued and America entered what historians refer to as the Panic of 1837.
The banks, however, did not have enough gold and silver to supply the increasing demand. The economy was further depressed. Before the issue could be resolved, Jackson would leave the presidency, saddling his successor, Martin van Buren, with the economic mess.