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The Erie Canal, completed in 1825, provided passage from the Hudson River to Lake Erie.

The Erie Canal, completed in 1825, provided passage from the Hudson River to Lake Erie.

Reproduced from American Scenery, by Nathaniel Parker Willis, General Collections, Library of Congress

The Erie Canal

Images of the Era: 1815-1851

Following the War of 1812, a stronger sense of national unity emerged in the United States. As America expanded westward, however, attempts to spread slavery into those new territories seriously divided the nation.