Being an American in the early 1800s meant having pride in your country and being proud of all the great achievements you and your fellow Americans have all reached. Being an American meant having pride in your country because the colonies were doubted and most thought they wouldn't gain independence because they weren't powerful and against all odds, they succeeded. Also, the Americans all had a sense of individualism, as for the first time, they were no longer under the king's control. Lasty, being an American meant promoting national unity because many countries were divided amongst themselves, but America was united, providing a good role model for other developing nations. But although we went through prosperous times, there were always those that were oppressed, the women, the slaves, and the Native Americans.
After the American Revolution, and the war of 1812, the Americans finally began to prosper in the areas of politics, art, music,and literature. In the area of literature, many great authors rose to fame, such as: Davy Crockett, James Fenimore Cooper, Washington Irving, and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. These authors made many contributions in the areas of literature and have created many famous titles, such as: "Rip Van Winkle", "The Pioneers", "The Crockett Almanac", and "The Song of Hiawatha". All of which I have enjoyed learning about.
Along with literature, the US was also growing in the area of art. There were many amateur artists in the 1800s, but there were also very many skilled professionals. Untrained artists carved weather vanes or made signs, this was also known as folk art. Many professional artists tried to capture emotions and personalities in portraits. Artists from the Hudson River School tended to focus on nature and tried to accurately depict broad scenic vistas. One famous artist, John James Audubon, was known for painting finely detailed portraits of many species of animals. Another artist, George Catlin, focused mainly on depicting native tribes, rituals, and landscape.
Another aspect of american life that prospered in the 1800s was music. Types of early american music consisted of, but were not limited to: Classical, Spirituals, Minstrel, and Folk music. Americans usually danced to classical music, folk music was usually accommodated by instruments, spirituals were usually sung by slaves working or in church, minstrel was just a collection of popular songs. All these were important to early developing American music.
One of the most important developing aspects of life in the early 1800s, would have to be politics. When it came to politics, the US was barely starting off as a nation with a government by the people, for the people, which had never been seen before in the rest of the world. The US had found out how to peacefully transfer the power from one leader to the next by allowing the people to choose who they thought was best fit for leading the nation.The US had a democracy, while the most other countries had a monarchies, or dictatorships, or no leader for their country. The US was the first in many centuries, since the Romans, to have a democratic government.
Although the US was a prospering nation that many people felt comfortable in, there were people that didn't like the way the US was governed, such as slaves, women, and Native Americans. These 3 groups of people were not treated as equal by white men, or other people. Slaves were tortured, had no rights and were treated as livestock/ property. Women were treated unfairly too, as they had little to no rights and were looked upon as the helpless that men needed to keep. Native Americans were treated as savage, violent people, and the american settlers looked down on them.
During the Era of Good Feelings, America prospered in many aspects of life, such as music, politics, art and literature. These prosperous times, known as the era of Good Feelings, were important to the developing American society, as they helped mold us into the growing, diverse nation we have today, filled with beautiful music, exceptional literature, excellent pieces of art, and organized and peaceful politics. Although the Americans were experiencing growing pride for their great nation in these times, not all groups were treated equally as the average white man was treated, these groups were: slaves, who had been taken from their home nations to serve and be treated as lesser beings since the 1600s, Native Americans, who were proud of their heritage and good at using everything they had to the best advantage, were treated as primitive and savage, women, among all others, were treated unequally too, even if they were white women, they were treated as people with limits, that they could never strive for greatness. But although all these people were being oppressed back then, all these things have taught our grand nation mistakes to never make again. In conclusion, the Era of Good Feelings taught our nation many valuable lessons.