Describe Jacksonian Democracy.
Andrew Jackson, in his first election in 1828, won all states west of the Appalachians and south of the Potomac, as well as Pennsylvania and New York, trouncing his opponent John Quincy Adams. If we define "democracy" as "people power," clearly this was a time when the "people's candidate" came to office. Opponents decried the election, considering that the "King Mob" had triumphed. The election marked the first time that political power in the country had been divided between the populace and elite. Jackson was the first president who was not from a wealthy background; in fact he came from poverty and rose by his own efforts. He was also the first president from a state not bordering on the Atlantic, exemplifying the increasing political shift from the Eastern to the Western states. The sectionalism between the East, South, and West became sharper during his term; maintaining Southern and Western interests led him to seek the abolition of the Bank of the United States, whose business practices tended to benefit the Northeast, and side with the South on slavery, as he himself was a slave owner. Jackson, an Indian fighter when young, displaced tribes as president. However, despite these issues, the "common man" (white, over 21, and a landowner) shared in political power more so than previously, the most extreme example being his unofficial "Kitchen Cabinet" advisers. The wealthy no longer had a monopoly on governmental power; the age of oligarchy ended, at least temporarily.
Rise of the American Nation, pgs. 270 - 276, HBJ, 1972.