On this day (October 20th) in 1803: The Senate of the United States ratifies the Louisiana Purchase. The historic purchase saw the U.S. purchase 828,000 square miles of North America from France. For the cost of fifteen million dollars, the United States nearly doubled the size of the United States and provided with the country with immense new material resources and a strengthened strategic position. The purchase was made by Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte to US President Thomas Jefferson. Napoleon had had ambitions to develop the territory as a North American empire. However French failures to crush rebellion in Saint Domingue, combined with renewed threat with England led Napoleon to abandon the venture.
Check out yesterday’s Matt Hefler Presents post.