Thomas Jefferson's Influence On American Indians

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Thomas Jefferson and the American Indians With the election of Thomas Jefferson’s, often referred to as “The revolution of 1800”, was a pivotal moment for Americans and Indians alike. Now in power he wanted to expand borders into Indian territory to the west but did not want to go into war. Thomas Jefferson's policies on Indian diplomacy had major negative effects on Indian culture and resulted in a plague of land loss to the Americans. The life of Indian tribes in the territory would be altered forever. Early in his presidency Jefferson sent ambassadors to France to discuss the issue of New Orleans and it being the “cork” plugging the Mississippi river. In order to promote farming and transportation of goods from the region use of the Mississippi…show more content…
Indian tribes now found themselves less self sufficient and were pushed into agriculture, weaving, and other fields to generate money to afford the new American dependence. A people who were recently fierce warriors and hunters now led a more sedentary agricultural lifestyle and had lost their free standing position. Indian chiefs found their tribes economically heavily dependent on trade with white Americans unlike their independence, and would be willing to give up their land holdings that they would otherwise not be willing to part with, in exchange for goods or to pay up outstanding debts. The effectiveness of this plan also sparked a resistance among natives, spearheaded by Tecumseh, creating new ideas about unification against the white man and the dependence from them. In summation, Thomas Jefferson’s policies on American Indian relations majorly affected native populations. A culture of people originally separated in tribes constantly at war and isolated in self sufficiency were transformed to something entirely new and increasingly agrarian. The dependent Indian was easy to oppress and manipulate into giving up their land. American Indians slowly were accommodated and assimilated into American society dissolving their culture and land ownership giving Jefferson exactly what he
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