Western Expansion, Manifest Destiny, and the Mexican-American War Questions and Answers

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What are the three most significant effects on the New World of the westward expansion?

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Westward expansion of the United States of America had a number of very significant ramifications for both the newly-emerging nation and for the peoples and lands that were incorporated into the United States.

One major effect of westward expansion was to catapult the United States from a fledgling former British colony into a major country with which the colonial powers Britain, France and Spain would soon have to contend.  President Thomas Jefferson’s successful 1803 purchase from France of a huge tract of land – the Louisiana Purchase – instantaneously increased the size of the United States by 828,000 square miles, while providing the country with a major extension of its territory into the continent’s west.  Also, with the purchase of Louisiana, the United States now controlled the city of New Orleans and its strategically important port, which controlled entry into the Mississippi River from the south.  With control of access to the Mississippi, American trade with...

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