Relevency Assignment: American System

After the War of 1812, Henry Clay devised a plan to recover the American economy. He called this plan the American System, a program that included protective tariffs, internal improvements, and a national bank. The first of these reforms was the Tariff of 1816. This tariff was passed by Congress in order to protect the manufactured goods of the U.S. and raise the prices of  European manufactured goods. The second part of the plan was the Maysville Road Veto. This national road was meant to be the most important passage, connecting Maysville and Washington D.C. However, Andrew Jackson vetoed the bill because the federal government was paying for a road in one state which would give them too much power. Lastly, a Second National Bank was created to combat inflation and recover the economy. Unfortunately, the Bank failed in 1836, the last of Henry Clay's American System legacy.

“Every nation should anxiously endeavor to establish its absolute independence, and consequently be able to feed and clothe and defend itself. If it rely on a foreign supply that may be cut off... it cannot be independent. "

Rep. Henry Clay, explaining the rationale of his American System.

Henry Clay, the founder of the idea of the American, was an ardent supporter for his economic plan for the United States. He pushed for complete independence of America from powerful European nations. Clay pictured an ideal image of a nation that supported itself successfully and remained a sovereign power.

Other Facts:

1. Henry Clay and Andrew Jackson were enemies

2. The Maysville Road is also know as the Cumberland Road or National Road.

3. The American System was put into place because of the War of 1812.

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