BLADWV_170730_055
Existing comment:
Causes of the War:
Embargo Act of 1807:
The embargo was designed to prevent American ships from going to sea, so sailors could not be impressed and other violations could not occur. The embargo was a defensive measure to prevent the United States from being dragged into a war that it was ill prepared to fight. Jefferson and James Madison saw the embargo as an offensive use of economic coercion. It was believed that the absence of American trade would so harm England and France's ability to obtain needed war supplies that both would eventually repeal their restrictive trade acts. By 1809, the embargo had become so unpopular in the United States that it was repealed. America had avoided war with England, but at great economic cost.
As an example of the impact of the Act, it is estimated that United States exports fell from $108,000,000 in 1807, to $22,000,000 in 1808, while imports declined from $138,000,0000 to $57,000,000 in the same period. During the embargo 55,0000 sailors and 100,000 laborers were out of work in the United States. Customs revenues fell from $16 m to virtually nothing.
The effects of the embargo were also felt strongly by the population of Southern Maryland, where huge quantities of unsold tobacco collected in the warehouses. In northern Maryland, the price of wheat fell from $2.00 to 75 cents a bushel."
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