Louisiana Purchase Treaty (1803)

President Thomas Jefferson doubled the size of the United States by purchasing the Louisiana Territory from France for $15 million dollars. The price worked out to about 3 cents an acre for over 500 million acres of land. The purchase opened lands west of the Mississippi to settlement, but also resulted in the further displacement of American Indian tribes. Jefferson faced oppositions from those who believed the Constitution did not provide for the purchase of new lands.

The Purchase also eventually raised issues about the expansion of slavery. The Missouri Compromise partially addressed this issue but questions remained as to the powers of Congress and executive authority to regulate slavery in new territories.