Today in History, December 2: What a busy day in US History! 1775 – The American flag is hauled aloft aboard the first US Navy ship, the USS Alfred, by her commander, Capt. John Paul Jones. 1823 – President James Monroe announces in his State of the Union address what will become known as the Monroe Doctrine…telling the European powers that America would not interfere in European conflicts (we didn’t want to anyway), and that America would police the western hemisphere…Europeans were to stay out. We couldn’t really enforce this doctrine at the time, but it was to England’s benefit…so the Royal Navy did so for us. 1845 – President James K. Polk, in his state of the Union address, announces what would become known as Manifest Destiny…the notion that the “Americans” of the Eastern American continent were pre-ordained to control the North American continent, encouraging settlement of the west.