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Cocked Hat, Delaware

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cocked Hat, Delaware
Unincorporated community
Cocked Hat is located in Delaware
Cocked Hat
Cocked Hat
Cocked Hat is located in the US
Cocked Hat
Cocked Hat
Coordinates: 38°46′00″N 75°36′39″W / 38.76667°N 75.61083°W / 38.76667; -75.61083
Country United States
State Delaware
County Sussex
Elevation 49 ft (15 m)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
Area code(s) 302
GNIS feature ID 216782[1]

Cocked Hat is an unincorporated community in Sussex County, Delaware, United States. Cocked Hat is located on Delaware Route 404 north of Bridgeville.

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  • James Monroe: Last Cocked Hat (1817 - 1825)
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Transcription

Professor Dave here, I wanna tell you about James Monroe. Born into the planter class, James Monroe fought in the Revolution under Washington, and saw combat during the disastrous Battle of Long Island, which was the first – and nearly last – major battle of the War. He crossed the Delaware with Washington on Christmas Eve, 1776, and is depicted holding the American flag in John Trumbull’s famous painting, “Washington Crossing the Delaware.” He was wounded the next morning during the Battle of Trenton with a musket ball shot to his shoulder. After studying law under Thomas Jefferson from 1780 to 1783, he served as a delegate in the Continental Congress. As an anti-Federalist delegate to the Virginia convention considering ratification of the new Constitution, Monroe opposed ratification. He claimed it gave too much power to the Federal government. But he took an active part in the new government, and in 1790 he was elected to the Senate of the first United States Congress, where he joined Jefferson’s Democratic-Republicans. He rose to national prominence as a diplomat in France when he negotiated the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. During the War of 1812, Monroe held both the critical roles of Secretary of State and the Secretary of War under President James Madison, the only man ever to hold both positions simultaneously. Facing little opposition from the disorganized Federalist Party, Monroe was easily elected president in 1816, as the Federalist candidate only carried three states. President Monroe bought Florida from Spain for five million dollars, and embarked on a tour of the country that was generally well received. He largely ignored party lines in making appointments to lower posts, which reduced old political tensions. He made two long national tours in 1817 to build national trust, thus inaugurating the “Era of Good Feelings”, which lasted through his administration. With the ratification of the Treaty of 1818, the United States resolved boundary issues with Britain, and the country extended from the Atlantic to the Pacific, giving America harbor and fishing rights in the Pacific Northwest, while jointly occupying the Oregon Country. It represented America’s first determined attempt at creating an “American global empire.” But a dispute over the admission of Missouri to the union embroiled the country in 1820, threatening national unity. On February 3rd, 1819, New York Congressman James Tallmadge Jr. submitted two amendments to Missouri’s request for statehood. The first proposed to federally prohibit further slave migration into Missouri; the second would require all slave offspring, born after statehood, to be freed at 25 years of age. At issue among southern legislators was intrusion by their northern free state colleagues regarding slave labor. Northern critics objected to the expansion of slavery into the Louisiana Purchase territory because of the three-fifths rule, which counted slaves as three-fifths of a person in the states’ population, even though they had no right to vote. The slave-holding states were acutely aware that maintaining a balance between free and slave states was necessary to ensure political equilibrium in the US Senate. With the Senate evenly split, both sections possessing 11 states, the admission of Missouri would give the South a two-seat advantage in the Senate and chip away at the North’s House majority. The South sought to enlist Missouri to maintain Southern political preeminence and ensure the security of slavery. The Missouri question ended in stalemate on March 4th, 1819 as the House sustained the Northern anti-slavery position, while the Senate blocked a slave-restricted Missouri statehood. But when Maine applied for statehood as a free state, the Senate quickly made Maine’s admission a condition for Missouri’s admission as a slave state, with Illinois Senator Jesse B. Thomas adding a provision excluding slavery from all land north of the 36 30’ parallel. The combined measures passed the Senate, but were voted down in the House by Northern representatives who held out for a free Missouri. Speaker of the House Henry Clay of Kentucky, in a desperate bid to break the deadlock, divided the Senate bills. Clay and his allies succeeded in pressuring half the House Southerners to allow the Illinois provision while persuading Northern House members to allow admission of Missouri as a slave state. The Missouri Compromise was passed on March 2nd, 1820. Thus, a national crisis was averted, though only temporarily. The collapse of the Federalists left Monroe with no organized opposition at the end of his first term, and he ran for reelection unopposed, which has never occurred since. A single elector from New Hampshire cast a vote for John Quincy Adams in order to preserve Washington’s legacy as the only recipient of a unanimous Electoral College vote. After the Napoleonic wars ended in 1815, most of Spain and Portugal’s colonies in Latin America revolted and declared independence. Americans welcomed this development as a validation of the spirit of self-governance. However, there was a Russian claim to the Pacific Coast down to the 51st Parallel while European pressures mounted to have Latin America returned to its previous colonial status. On December 2nd, 1823, in his annual report to Congress, Monroe formally announced American opposition to any foreign intervention in the recently independent countries of the Americas, stating that the Americas should be free from future European colonization and free from any foreign interference in sovereign nations’ affairs. He further stated the United States’ intent to stay neutral in European affairs, but also that he would consider any attempts at new colonies or interference with independent nations in the Americas as hostile acts toward the United States. Monroe stated that since stable governments had been established in Argentina, Colombia, Chile, and Mexico, the policy of the United States was to uphold republican institutions, seek treaties of commerce on a most-favored-nation basis with free nations, and oppose any attempts to return them to colonial status. The articulation of an “American system” distinct from that of Europe was a basic tenet of Monroe’s policy toward Latin America and he was proud that the United States was the first nation to recognize the freed colonies in support of “liberty and humanity.” This proclamation became known as the Monroe Doctrine, a landmark in American foreign policy. Although it is Monroe’s most famous contribution to American history, the statement was actually written by his Secretary of State, John Quincy Adams. Monroe and Adams realized that American recognition would not protect the new independent countries from military attempts to restore Spain’s power. Britain proposed that they and the United States jointly declare their opposition to European intervention, as the British also opposed any re-conquest of Latin America and suggested that the US join in proclaiming a “hands off” policy. Ex-presidents Jefferson and Madison urged Monroe to accept the offer, but Adams advised caution, saying it would be better “to avow our principles explicitly to Russia and France, than to come... in the wake of the British man-of-war.” Monroe accepted Adams’ advice and proclaimed that not only must Latin America be left alone, but warned Russia not to encroach southward on the Pacific coast. “The American continents,” he stated, “by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European Power.” The Monroe Doctrine held that any future foreign effort to gain further political control in the hemisphere or to violate the independence of existing states would be treated as an act of hostility. It is to Monroe and Adams’ great credit that there have been few serious European attempts at intervention since. Monroe’s presidency was the end of an era; not only was he the last of the Founding Fathers but his Presidency marked the end of the first period of American presidential history. He was the last U.S. President to wear a powdered wig, knee-breeches, and tri-cornered hat, earning him the nickname “Last Cocked Hat.” He was also the last of the Virginia slave holding Founding Fathers. Yet as President, he alone tried to make restitution by providing passage back to the West Coast of Africa for the freed descendants of kidnapped Africans. They founded a new nation named Liberia and named its capital Monrovia in gratitude. Following his retirement in 1825, Monroe died in New York City on July 4th, 1831, becoming the third president to die on Independence Day. His presidency was a tremendous success and historians have rated him highly.

References


This page was last edited on 14 January 2018, at 21:32
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