Catalogue


Middle Tennessee, 1775-1825 : progress and popular democracy on the southwestern frontier /
Kristofer Ray.
edition
1st ed.
imprint
Knoxville : University of Tennessee Press, c2007.
description
xxvii, 236 p. : maps ; 24 cm.
ISBN
1572335971, 9781572335974 (hardcover : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Knoxville : University of Tennessee Press, c2007.
isbn
1572335971
9781572335974 (hardcover : alk. paper)
catalogue key
6371994
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [207]-225) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2008-10-01:
This book is indicative of historians' growing awareness of the importance of the political, economic, and cultural development of the southwestern frontier. Ray (Ashland Univ.) aptly shows how middle Tennessee's democratic culture between 1775 and 1825 took root amid rapid demographic growth and an economic boom based on cotton and tobacco planting. An important side effect of this rapid transformation from frontier to settled country was the different interpretations of the nature and meaning of progress. The entrepreneurial-minded advanced an expansive interpretation of progress that sought internal improvements, embraced technological innovation, and pushed for urban development. Ordinary Tennesseans, on the other hand, adopted a restrictive interpretation that embraced economic development and the notion of individual initiative, as long as the government protected them from the stark realities of the new market economy (i.e., secured personal property and debtor relief). The impact of slavery, interestingly enough, did not inhibit planters' and merchants' commitment to entrepreneurial innovation or progress, at least until the Missouri Controversy of 1819 and the emergence of a native antislavery movement. Overall, this is a well-reasoned, tightly written book that deserves widespread notice. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above. P. G. Connors Michigan Senate Majority Policy Office
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This item was reviewed in:
Choice, October 2008
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Summaries
Main Description
"In tracing the evolution of political culture in early Tennessee, Kris Ray provides a sweeping study of the multifaceted ways in which early Americans understood leadership and democratic participation. Readers will find Middle Tennessee, 17751825 an engaging contribution to our understanding of how, in the crucible of the Early American Republic, democracy did not have to take the form of competing political parties to be vibrant and challenging." -Craig Thompson Friend, author of Along the Maysville Road: The Early American Republic in the Trans-Appalachian West "Ray's work is an excellent reflection of current historical scholarship, the first systematic attempt to place Middle Tennessee within the same framework developed in other recent books on Trans-Appalachian states." -John R. Finger, author of Tennessee Frontiers: Three Regions in Transition During its early years, the frontier region of Middle Tennessee developed from thinly settled outposts to a premier destination for thousands of land-hungry immigrants. The resulting population explosion led to a shift in political power from a small group of surveyors and speculators to the farmers, merchants, and entrepreneurs attracted by a burgeoning, globally-connected agricultural economy. Kristofer Ray chronicles the rise of Middle Tennessee's political system as it transformed from one dominated by land interests to an increasingly vibrant democracy in which the "common man" had more of a voice. He also explores the fact that, as the economy grew, a sharp debate emerged between the mercantile class and ordinary farmers as to the best way to sustain regional progress. This book explores the issues, values, and visions around which the politics of early Middle Tennessee were based. It convincingly shows how the region's emerging political culture established a foundation for the rise of popular democracy, which, as Ray reveals, meant that Tennesseans not only expressed themselves through voting, but also through the social realms of town hall meetings, parades, and even effigy burnings. This book explores both the promises and limitations of political cultural development in early Middle Tennessee. It provides the context out of which Andrew Jackson would emerge as a national political force. It will appeal to those interested in southern studies, American history or political science. Kristofer Ray is assistant professor of history at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio. His articles have appeared in Ohio Valley History and the Tennessee Historical Quarterly.
Long Description
During its early years, the frontier region of Middle Tennessee developed from thinly settled outposts to a premier destination for thousands of land-hungry immigrants. The resulting population explosion led to a shift in political power from a small group of surveyors and speculators to the farmers, merchants, and entrepreneurs attracted by a burgeoning, globally-connected agricultural economy. Kristofer Ray chronicles the rise of Middle Tennessee's political system as it transformed from one dominated by land interests to an increasingly vibrant democracy in which the "common man" had more of a voice. He also explores the fact that, as the economy grew, a sharp debate emerged between the mercantile class and ordinary farmers as to the best way to sustain regional progress. This book explores the issues, values, and visions around which the politics of early Middle Tennessee were based. It convincingly shows how the region's emerging political culture established a foundation for the rise of popular democracy, which, as Ray reveals, meant that Tennesseans not only expressed themselves through voting, but also through the social realms of town hall meetings, parades, and even effigy burnings. This book explores both the promises and limitations of political cultural development in early Middle Tennessee. It provides the context out of which Andrew Jackson would emerge as a national political force. It will appeal to those interested in southern studies, American history, and political science.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Introductionp. xvii
Land Speculation and the Origins of a Political Culture, 1775-1790p. 1
Warfare and the Creation of a Jeffersonian Identity, 1790-1796p. 19
Militias, Factions, and Public Opinion in a Shifting Political Culture, 1796-1810p. 41
Economy, Demography, and Diversification, 1796-1815p. 57
Ideological Division and American Nationalism in an Expanding Political Culture, 1796-1815p. 93
The Emergence of a Jacksonian Philosophy: Expansion, Banks, and Panic, 1815-1825p. 117
Epilogue: Slavery and the Transition to Jacksonian Politicsp. 141
Notesp. 153
Bibliographyp. 207
Indexp. 227
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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