Study Questions

Includes questions comparing and contrasting to Hamilton

Chapter 1

When Andrew Jackson, his family, and community were fighting the Revolutionary War, what were the ideals they were fighting for?

How did Jackson's sense of the Revolutionary War differ from Alexander Hamilton's? Can you think of any ways in which they are similar?

Chapter 2

Describe Jackson's personality as a young boy and young man. Where there early signs in his personality that he would grow up to be a leader?

Jackson and Hamilton had very different personalities. Can you think of any ways in which they were alike?

Chapter 3

What does Jackson's romance with Rachel say about his personality? Why do you think Rachel's family was so eager to accept Jackson as their son-in-law?

Given what you know about Jackson so far, were you surprised by his attitudes toward blacks and Native people? Why or why not.

Chapter 4

Given the cost of houses, very few people would be able to pay cash for a house. According to this study, 80% of Americans have debt, including a mortgage (which means taking out a loan to buy a house. Is personal debt different from national debt? Are there similarities? Explain.

Do you agree with Jackson's reading of Article VI, section 3 of the Constitution?

Chapter 5

How did Jackson rise to power in Tennessee?

Chapters 6 and 7

Explain how Jackson was brave. Explain how he was fearful. Would you call him a mostly brave person, or a mostly fearful person?

Were there peaceful alternatives to the wars Jackson fought?

Do you think Jackson abused his power as a general? If so, where do you think he crossed the line, and why?

Chapter 8

Was the corrupt bargain actually corrupt? Why or why not? (Try arguing both sides. First argue that it was corrupt, then argue that it was not.)

Chapter 9

Hamilton worried that a demagogue would arise. What would Hamilton have thought of Jackson? Would he have thought he was a demagogue? Why or why not?

Chapter 10

Jackson said, “I have great confidence in the virtue of a great majority of the people, and I cannot fear the result.”

Hamilton said, “Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint.”

Which quotation do you most agree with? Why?

Chapters 11

What does the Peggy Eaton affair tell us about Jackson's personality? Do you agree with the position he took? Why or why not?

One of Jackson's political opponents said, if "IndianRemoval Act became law, the Cherokees would become “living monuments of the white man’s wrongs.” Was he right?

Given how Jackson feels about states' rights and the power of states to decide the fate of Native people living within their borders, were you surprised by his opinions on nullification?

Chapter 12

Do you think the Constitution should be loosely interpreted (Hamilton) or strictly interpreted as the founding fathers intended (Jefferson). Explain.

Chapter 13

How do you think the government should have handled the anti-slavery tracts being send into the South. Should people be able to write anything they want and send it through the mail? Or should there be limits? If so, what should be the limitations?



Making of America