Being an American in the Era of Good Feelings

Being an American in the 1800’s is something that I can be proud of. It has showed me how to be my own person and how to stand individually. Yes, we are living in the 1800’s but I like to say we are living in the Era of Good Feelings. Everything is new and exciting, and sometimes even scary. There are so many new ways to express yourself. After the war, we find ourselves helping each other, and building a nation, together.

James Monroe is our current president, he won 231 votes to 1 vote against John Quincy Adams. Monroe follows James Madison’s plans. He supports federal funding for internal improvements, though he hesitated to authorize direct federal involvement, and he raised protective tariffs to spur American manufacturing. Our government is just starting out, and it’s helping our country for the better.

Art is everywhere. People across the states make masterpieces buy painting, sculpting, drawing, and so much more. Some of my friends make folk art, which is just ordinary art with ordinary materials, but other make portraits, and other complicated art. Most wealthy people have portraits made of themselves, and have them hung in their houses. Another common art style is nature sceneries, showing the beauty of our new nation. Others like Washington Irving and Charles Dickens write fantastically detailed poems and stories. Art can be thought about in many different ways, but there is one thing for sure; it is beautiful.

Music and dancing are a great part of our lives. They help us express ourselves with our bodies. The most common dance is during the cotillion, when the couples dance to elegant music. Slaves listen and sing as well. They like to sing to create spirituals with violins, banjos, and drums. Most songs were about America and our free land. Music and dancing also help show emotion, sad or happy, and can travel generations tell them how we lived, and how we feel.

When our men get sent off into battle, authors write stories to help us imagine the places and the struggles of our soldiers. Some stories can be exaggerated like Davy Crockett's autobiography. The books I like to read like James Fenimore Cooper’s The Pioneers, and The Last of The Mohicans, to help me get my mind off of the crazy new world.

Some might say now is not the Era of Good Feelings. In my opinion, African American slaves have life the worst. They are forced to work and take care of the white people, just because they have dark skin, and they can’t do anything about it. Women also don’t have the same rights as men. They don’t get to do anything the men get to do, just because of their gender. Hopefully in the near future, there will equality for all.

Being an American in the 1800’s has taught me how to stand for what I believe in, and to keep standing until I get it. I can use art, music, and literature to express myself and tell my story. Some of my peers have a hard life because they don’t have privileged life like us white males. The early 1800’s will live on as the Era of Good Feelings because we Americans learned how to come together as a country and finally be free.

Hart, Diane, and Bert Bower. History Alive!: The United States Through Industrialism. Palo Alto, CA: Teachers' Curriculum Institute, 2011. Print.

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Created with images by Unsplash - "usa flags stars and stripes" • derwiki - "san francisco city hall california" • Biswajit Das Kunst - "leaves" • geralt - "tango dance pair" • DariuszSankowski - "old retro antique"

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