1817 Era of Good Feeling

White House

The phrase "Era of Good Feeling," first appearing in the Boston "Columbian Centennial," took root during Monroe's tour of New England. This marked the first time since Washington and the last time in American history that the President had the support of the entire country.

The concept of the Era of Good Feelings originated from the deeply rooted political aspirations of the time. Political theorists posited that parties were detrimental to democracy, aligning with the framers of the Constitution who had hoped to avoid the emergence of political parties. The era emerged not from achieving this ideal but rather from the decline and near disintegration of the Federalist Party. President James Madison hoped that the single-party rule he experienced would transition into genuine non-partisanship. However, this expectation was not realized. The disbanding of the Federalist Party led individuals with varied political ideologies to join the Republican Party. Consequently, the party quickly lost its unity, leading not to non-partisan politics but to a period characterized by internal factionalism.