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How did the United States acquire Florida

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After 1783, Americans immigrants moved into West Florida. In 1810, these American settlers in West Florida rebelled, declaring independence from Spain. President James Madison and Congress used the incident to claim the region, knowing full well that the Spanish government was seriously weakened by Napoleon’s invasion of Spain. The United States asserted that the portion of West Florida from the Mississippi to the Perdido rivers was part of the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. Negotiations over Florida began in earnest with the mission of Don Luis de Onís to Washington in 1815 to meet Secretary of State James Monroe. The issue was not resolved until Monroe was president and John Quincy Adams his Secretary of State.
====General Andrew Jackson invaded Florida in 1818John Qunicy Adams Committed to American Expansion====
[[File:Andrew_Jackson_by_Ralph_E._W._Earl_1837.jpg|thumbnail|left|250px|Andrew Jackson]]
Although While West Florida had already been annexed by the United States, no one recognized the American claim. Still, Spain was incredibly weak and had little control over its territory. Spain's weakness gave the United States a unique opportunity to seize Florida. In addition to Spain's troubles, the Secretary of War, Henry Calhoun, had dispatched Andrew Jackson to quell Seminole raids into Western Florida and Georgia. This military action quickly became the first Seminole War. As part of this action, Jackson moved into Spanish territory without consent.<ref>Alan Brinkley, [ American History], 11th edition (McGraw Hill, 2003), p. 226.</ref>  U.S. -Spanish relations were extremely strained over suspicions of because justifiably believed that the American support for the independence struggles of Spanish-American colonies, the was an overt attempt to seize Florida. The situation became even more critical when General Andrew Jackson seized thrust into Florida resulted in the seizure of the Spanish forts at Pensacola and St. Marks in his 1818 authorized raid against . Additionally, he drove further into Florida when he sought to kill Seminoles and escaped slaves who were he viewed as a threat to Georgia. Jackson even executed two British citizens on charges of inciting the Indians and runaways.
Monroe’s government seriously considered denouncing Jackson’s actions, but Adams defended the Jackson citing the necessity to restrain the Indians and escaped slaves since the Spanish failed to do so. Adams also sensed that Jackson’s Seminole campaign was popular with Americans and it strengthened his diplomatic hand with Spain. Adams used Jackson’s military action to present Spain with a demand to either control the inhabitants of East Florida or cede it to the United States.
* Republished from [| Office of the Historian, United States Department of State]
* Article: [| Acquisition of Florida: Treaty of Adams-Onis (1819) and Transcontinental Treaty (1821)]
[[Category:US State Department]] [[Category:Wikis]][[Category:United States History]] [[Category: History of the Early Republic]] [[Category:19th Century History]] [[Category:Political History]] [[Category:Diplomatic History]]

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