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Author Topic: The 13 states remain independent and do not form a union  (Read 1535 times)
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« on: November 15, 2012, 07:00:02 pm »
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I am curious, if this was the case, how do you think the map would have changed and look like now?
I think this is an interesting exercise and it's something I am doing my own research on, but would be very happy to hear what others think.
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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2012, 07:06:47 pm »
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Virginia has a good advantage in Western expansion (before areas were given away in respect to a nationwide union, they held territory all the way to modern day Illinois), though Connecticut has claims and I believe New York does as well.
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2012, 10:02:36 pm »
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Massachusetts too.

Most of the unorganized territory belonged to Virginia before the Union was formed:


But MA and CT also had claims on that territory but when you look at the map it's hard to believe they would have been able to keep that land:


NY and NH were fighting over VT which was however an independent state.  There would have probably been some battles over each state's border, and there might also have been more spanish or french speaking "countries" west of the Mississippi River.
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« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2012, 12:31:03 am »
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I don't believe some of them would've survived on their own...Delaware in particular.

Some of the states would find "protectors" in strong states abroad, esp. France.  Though the Revolution would screw with that.
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« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2012, 09:31:16 am »
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Its pretty clear that the southern states would be in a much stronger position to expand westwards. Most of the yankee states would have been blocked by Virginia, so possibly slavery would have lasted much longer.

The Lousiana purchase wouldn't have happened and it is unlikely that any of the states would have had the strength to conquer the area, so a French North America survives.
Even if one imagine a "Southern Alliance" against France it would not have been strong enough to take Louisiana.

I could imagine the New England states forming some kind of confederation later on, since they would be too weak on their own.
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« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2012, 11:35:06 am »
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Its pretty clear that the southern states would be in a much stronger position to expand westwards. Most of the yankee states would have been blocked by Virginia, so possibly slavery would have lasted much longer.

The Lousiana purchase wouldn't have happened and it is unlikely that any of the states would have had the strength to conquer the area, so a French North America survives.
Even if one imagine a "Southern Alliance" against France it would not have been strong enough to take Louisiana.

I could imagine the New England states forming some kind of confederation later on, since they would be too weak on their own.

You don't think the British would have claimed Louisiana for themselves after Napoleon's downfall?  Remember that France only regained Louisiana from Spain for the 1800-1803 period and it was basically worthless to them due to British naval superiority.
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« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2012, 04:14:14 pm »
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Its pretty clear that the southern states would be in a much stronger position to expand westwards. Most of the yankee states would have been blocked by Virginia, so possibly slavery would have lasted much longer.

The Lousiana purchase wouldn't have happened and it is unlikely that any of the states would have had the strength to conquer the area, so a French North America survives.
Even if one imagine a "Southern Alliance" against France it would not have been strong enough to take Louisiana.

I could imagine the New England states forming some kind of confederation later on, since they would be too weak on their own.

You don't think the British would have claimed Louisiana for themselves after Napoleon's downfall?  Remember that France only regained Louisiana from Spain for the 1800-1803 period and it was basically worthless to them due to British naval superiority.
Not sure. North America was clearly within the British sphere of influence and neither Russia nor Austria would have objected to an annexcation of Louisiana, but generally Bourbon France was treated pretty lenient by Britain in the Treaty of Paris regarding overseas territories only losing Mauritius, the Seychelles, St. Lucia and Tobago and not the more valuable islands Martinique and Guadeloupe.
Given that the purpose of the Treaty of Paris was to keep France as a great power, but restore its borders to pre-1792 status the most likely outcome might be that Spain gets Louisiana back - like they got Santo Domingo.
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« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2012, 07:37:33 pm »

If there's no union at all, then we're talking about there being not even any Articles of Confederation being ratified in 1781.  Since what kept the Articles from being ratified was Maryland's refusal to do so until New York and Virginia had agreed to cede their vast western land claims, that is the most likely reason for failure of ratification.

If land claims had been so intransigently kept as to prevent ratification, then post-Independence, besides Vermont, there likely would have been a war over Wyoming (the valley in Pennsylvania, not the later territory out west that was weirdly named after it).

So probably, the northeast would be have in turmoil while Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia set up a confederation of their own, which would have included what became the Northwest Territory.

The squabbling in America might have led there to be less enthusiasm for revolution in France, but if not, I'm fairly certain several American states would have managed to get themselves embroiled in the Revolutionary/Napoleonic Wars.
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« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2012, 03:55:43 am »
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Here's how I think things would have turned out:
First of all, I agree that the southern states would have had an advantage in expanding westward, especially Virginia.  At some point, either the southern states would have formed an alliance/union in order to go to war against Britain and Spain in the west, or Virginia would have absorbed some of the more dysfunctional southern colonies (Georgia?), plus some spanish colonies and the southern part of the Louisiana colony, including MO, AR and LA.  Virginia or whatever the new state was called would probably have some of the same problems south american states such as Brazil or Mexico.  The state, which would probably extend all the way to Arizona, would have eventually given up on slavery, but the black and brown majority would still have lower standards of living than the very small white minority.

California and Nevada would probably still belong to Mexico, while Washington, Oregon and Idaho would belong to Canada.  Alaska would belong to Russia while Hawaii would be independent.  The Northern colonies would have been independent, since they would have had a hard time agreeing on certain things.  They wouldn't be facing any dangers from foreign powers due to their location, and they would be prosperous, yet powerless.   
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« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2012, 08:37:58 am »
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Here's how I think things would have turned out:
First of all, I agree that the southern states would have had an advantage in expanding westward, especially Virginia.  At some point, either the southern states would have formed an alliance/union in order to go to war against Britain and Spain in the west, or Virginia would have absorbed some of the more dysfunctional southern colonies (Georgia?), plus some spanish colonies and the southern part of the Louisiana colony, including MO, AR and LA.  Virginia or whatever the new state was called would probably have some of the same problems south american states such as Brazil or Mexico.  The state, which would probably extend all the way to Arizona, would have eventually given up on slavery, but the black and brown majority would still have lower standards of living than the very small white minority.

California and Nevada would probably still belong to Mexico, while Washington, Oregon and Idaho would belong to Canada.  Alaska would belong to Russia while Hawaii would be independent.  The Northern colonies would have been independent, since they would have had a hard time agreeing on certain things.  They wouldn't be facing any dangers from foreign powers due to their location, and they would be prosperous, yet powerless.   
In this scenario you are forgetting France and its interests in Louisiana. "Virginia" would not be strong enough to defeat France, so if the French keeps Louisiana after 1803 things would turn out differently. Same thing if Britain gets it.
Do you except Spain to get Louisiama back at the Treaty of Paris?
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« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2012, 03:12:22 pm »

Assuming that the French Revolution happens much as it did in our time line, I'd expect that France does not get to keep Louisiana.  Whether Britain, Spain, or one or more of the American States get it is debatable, but Britain will not allow France to keep it once Napoleon is defeated.
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« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2012, 03:21:59 pm »
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Its not that clear cut. Britain had an interest in restoring Bourbon France as a great power of some strength for balance of power reasons and showed restraint in the Treaty of Paris (as earlier mentioned).

But if we assume Britain gets Louisiana there is no way "Greater Virginia" can expand west. Only if comparatively weak Spain gets it. So this is a crucial element.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2012, 03:30:35 pm by politicus »Logged

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« Reply #12 on: November 25, 2012, 03:35:48 pm »
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Here's how I think things would have turned out:
First of all, I agree that the southern states would have had an advantage in expanding westward, especially Virginia.  At some point, either the southern states would have formed an alliance/union in order to go to war against Britain and Spain in the west, or Virginia would have absorbed some of the more dysfunctional southern colonies (Georgia?), plus some spanish colonies and the southern part of the Louisiana colony, including MO, AR and LA.  Virginia or whatever the new state was called would probably have some of the same problems south american states such as Brazil or Mexico.  The state, which would probably extend all the way to Arizona, would have eventually given up on slavery, but the black and brown majority would still have lower standards of living than the very small white minority.

California and Nevada would probably still belong to Mexico, while Washington, Oregon and Idaho would belong to Canada.  Alaska would belong to Russia while Hawaii would be independent.  The Northern colonies would have been independent, since they would have had a hard time agreeing on certain things.  They wouldn't be facing any dangers from foreign powers due to their location, and they would be prosperous, yet powerless.    
In this scenario you are forgetting France and its interests in Louisiana. "Virginia" would not be strong enough to defeat France, so if the French keeps Louisiana after 1803 things would turn out differently. Same thing if Britain gets it.
Do you except Spain to get Louisiama back at the Treaty of Paris?

I didn't forget Louisiana.  I just thought there was no more interest in this discussion and I didn't continue.
The Louisiana Colony is an interesting question.  France would have a really hard time IMO holding on to that landlocked area.  I think Canada and "Virginia" would have absorbed parts of that area, but I think there is also a small possibility some Native American states were established  in those areas which are still sparsely populated.  The scenario is highly unlikely but it is a posibility.  I find it hard to believe that France, who couldn't hold on to Quebec would be able to keep Louisiana.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2012, 03:56:03 pm by blagohair.com »Logged

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« Reply #13 on: November 25, 2012, 03:46:57 pm »
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Here's how I think things would have turned out:
First of all, I agree that the southern states would have had an advantage in expanding westward, especially Virginia.  At some point, either the southern states would have formed an alliance/union in order to go to war against Britain and Spain in the west, or Virginia would have absorbed some of the more dysfunctional southern colonies (Georgia?), plus some spanish colonies and the southern part of the Louisiana colony, including MO, AR and LA.  Virginia or whatever the new state was called would probably have some of the same problems south american states such as Brazil or Mexico.  The state, which would probably extend all the way to Arizona, would have eventually given up on slavery, but the black and brown majority would still have lower standards of living than the very small white minority.

California and Nevada would probably still belong to Mexico, while Washington, Oregon and Idaho would belong to Canada.  Alaska would belong to Russia while Hawaii would be independent.  The Northern colonies would have been independent, since they would have had a hard time agreeing on certain things.  They wouldn't be facing any dangers from foreign powers due to their location, and they would be prosperous, yet powerless.    
In this scenario you are forgetting France and its interests in Louisiana. "Virginia" would not be strong enough to defeat France, so if the French keeps Louisiana after 1803 things would turn out differently. Same thing if Britain gets it.
Do you except Spain to get Louisiama back at the Treaty of Paris?

I didn't forget Louisiana.  I just thought there was no more interest in this discussion and I didn't continue.
The Louisiana Colony is an interesting question.  Spain would have a really hard time IMO holding on to that landlocked area.  I think Canada and "Virginia" would have absorbed parts of that area, but I think there is also a small possibility some Native American states were established  in those areas which are still sparsely populated.  The scenario is highly unlikely but it is a posibility.  I find it hard to believe that France, who couldn't hold on to Quebec would be able to keep Louisiana.
I think Spain would definetly lose Louisiana, after all they lost everything else in America during the 19th century. The country was in serious decline and had several civil wars (Carlist wars). France is another matter. There are no more French/British wars after 1815 and this changes the situation fundamentally. Already in the Crimean War they are allies. I dont think they would have gone to war over Louisiana. Wouldnt be worth it for the British.
Also the 13 colonies and France where allies from the War of Independence, this (potentially anti-British) alliance might very well have continued for some time.
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« Reply #14 on: November 25, 2012, 04:02:00 pm »
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Sorry, I meant France, not Spain.

Those are some interesting parameters I hadn't thought of.  So if France had held onto Louisiana (New France) what is the ethnic composition of that area?  Is Nouvelle Orleans still the capital?  Would it be possible to manage such a vast area from a capital that is in the Gulf of Mexico?
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« Reply #15 on: November 25, 2012, 04:25:45 pm »
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Sorry, I meant France, not Spain.

Those are some interesting parameters I hadn't thought of.  So if France had held onto Louisiana (New France) what is the ethnic composition of that area?  Is Nouvelle Orleans still the capital?  Would it be possible to manage such a vast area from a capital that is in the Gulf of Mexico?
France had a very low population growth in the 19th century, so they couldn't attract many Frenchmen. But if you look at Algeria, which they conquered in 1830, it attracted a mix of South Italian and Spanish immigrants from a poor rural background who became French speaking pied noirs. It might have been the same pattern in Louisiana. Otherwise a black slave population and a much stronger Indian/Mestizo presence than in the 13 colonies. The French speaking frontier areas in Manitoba and Saskatchewan retained a large mixed population as a substantial population element until the 1880s and I think something similar would have occurred in Louisiana.
They might have to divide the area and create inland capitals in, say, St. Louis when the interior areas became more densely populated with New Orleans as the colonies capital the same way Brazil was governed from coastal Rio until the 1960s.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2012, 06:49:55 pm by politicus »Logged

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« Reply #16 on: November 26, 2012, 07:36:12 pm »

I do notice y'all are all assuming the French Revolution happens largely unchanged.  A less successful American Revolution would mean a reduction in revolutionary ardor in France with all sorts of pretty butterflies.
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« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2012, 08:03:56 pm »
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If the 13 former colonies became independent from Britain, regardless of whether they formed a union or not, the revolution would have been successful.  The anti-monarchy sentiment was the biggest influence from America on the French revolution, but that would still be true under this scenario.
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« Reply #18 on: November 26, 2012, 10:08:17 pm »

Even if they start fighting wars amongst themselves and/or some of them decide to establish monarchies of their own? What if instead of preventing the mutiny at the end of the war, the Commander-in-Chief had led it, starting a civil war?
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« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2012, 07:32:02 pm »
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They would most definitely go into war, over the areas around the Great Lakes, but Virginia would easily prevail as they happened to be the largest state (population-wise) and also the one with the easiest access to the Great Lakes.  There's no way any of the new states would have established monarchies because there were no royal families in America. 
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« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2012, 10:59:36 pm »
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So yeah, what happens with Louisianna is crucial.  If Spain gets it, they lose it when they lose Mexico.  It could go to Mexico, or to some opportunistic states (most likely Virginia w/ some other Southern states)

If France gets it, they could still lose it due to a revolution or just the position being untennable.

If England gets it, colonial expansion stops there. 

I think the most interesting scenario is where Spain gets Louisianna and then Mexico and the colonies end up fighting over it.

Virginia, I'm proud to say, looks like it would be best positioned to take advantage.
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« Reply #21 on: February 10, 2013, 09:19:11 am »
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What happens to the states doesn't matter. The War of 1812 would wipe the Northern states out, they were the "doves" of the War. The south might have a fighting chance to stay alive. Oh, and Florida might be acquired by Georgia.
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