Whose Manifest Destiny?
Whose Manifest Destiny? -- Narrative Project
• Introduction -- America’s Manifest Destiny, or its path to economic prosperity through cotton production in the South, and its path to securing dominion over the American West brought tremendous growth and benefits to our nation. This path to progress came at a heavy cost, however, for slaves, Native Americans, and Mexicans. While the progress of the 19th century certainly helped build the nation we have today, it is important to view this time period through the perspective of those who fell beneath the weight of America’s Manifest Destiny.
1. You will research ONE area of this time period that you found the most
interesting, or the one you would like to know more about.
2. You will read through the links below, but you are encouraged to find
others on your topic as well.
3. You will write a 1 page (double spaced) paper from the FIRST PERSON
PERSPECTIVE, with 12 font, 1” margins, and only includes YOUR NAME
IN THE HEADING (not class, date, etc)
4. Your response must answer (but is NOT limited to) the following:
(I) Your paper should describe who you are and in what year you are
(II) Your paper should describe some general details about your life.
(III) Your paper should describe in SPECIFIC detail ONE major scene or
event in your life that gives perspective on what your life is like as a
person living during this time.
(IV) Your paper should describe your thoughts on the things happening in
America during your lifetime (from your fictionalized historical
• Your paper must be either printed or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
• Not sure how to write a narrative? Click here for some pointers
Life in Chains: Slavery
Solomon Northup’s Experience:
12 Years a Slave Summary
12 Years a Slave Full Text
Harriet Jacobs’ Experience:
Biography Website - Click on the “About Harriet Jacobs” Tab in the upper right
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Ch 23 - Still in Prison
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (full text)
Suggested pages for reading -- p. 7–8, 11–16, 47 (last paragraph)–48,
105–107, 145–149, 173–175, 224–225, 237–241, 300–306
Frederick Douglass’ Experience:
Additional Biographical Information
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass (full text)
Suggested pages for reading -- p. iii–xii, 10–11, 36–38, 54–55, 64–65,
66–73, 80–82, 106 (last paragraph)–109, 116–117
Life in Betrayal: The Indian Removal Act and Trail of Tears
Cherokee Removal and the Trail of Tears.pdf
Cherokees vs. Andrew Jackson
An American Soldier recalls his participation in the Trail of Tears
Indian Removal-Samuel's Memory.pdf
Life in War: The Mexican American War
Mexican Perspective on the Mexican-American War
Mexican perceptions during the war
Whose Manifest Destiny?