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Us Civil War, 40 Years Of Intense Conflict Between The North And The South

1327 words - 6 pages

The Civil War was the result of 40 years of intense conflict and symbolized economic,social, and poliitical diferences between the north and the south.The South produced cash crops ... cotton, tobacco, and sugarcan for export to the northand Europe it depended on the North for manufactures and for trade. The labor force in the southincluded nearly 4 million slaves. Although the slave owners formed a small minority of thepopulation it dominated Southern politics and society. Slaves were the largest single investment inthe south. Fear of slave unrest ensured the loyalty of non slave owners to the economic and socialsystem.To maintain peace between the Southern and Northern supporters in the ...view middle of the document...

Many free states, for example, passed personal liberty laws in an effort tobug enforcement of the fugitive slave act . The increasing frequency with which free soilerspoliticians who argued that no more slave states should be admitted to the Union won electiveoffice in the North also worried Southerners. The problem of slavery expansion bursted again in1854, when Stephen Douglas from illinois put through congress a bill makeing two new territories(Kansas and Nebraska) and applying to both the principle of popular sovreignty. opposing anyfurther spread of slavery, the new party became so strong in the north that it nearly elected itscandidate JohnFremont, to the presidncy. Meanwhile democratic president james buchanan askedcongress to admit kansas to the union as a slave state, a proposal that made northerners mad.Adding to their anger the u.s. suprme court on march 7 1857 ruled in the Dred Scott case that theu.s. constitution gave congress no authority to prohibit slavery in the teritories. two years later, onoctober 16 1859 John brown, an uncompromsing oponent of slavery raided the federal arsenal atHarpers Ferry, Virginia in an attempt to promote a general slave uprising. That raid, along withnorthern condemnation of the dred scott decision, helped to convince southerners of theirgrowing insecurity within the union.In the presidential election of 1860, a split in democratic party ranks resulted in thenomination by the Southern wing of john Breckinridge of kentucky and the nomintion by thenorthern wing of stephen douglas. The nwly formed constitutional union party reflecting thecompromise sentiment still strong in the border states nominated john bell of tenessee. herepublicns nominated abraham Lincoln on a platform that opposed the further growth ofslavery and endorsed a protective tariff federal subsidies for internal improvements, and ahomestead act. The Democratic split virtually assured lincolns election, and this in turnconvinced the south to make a bid for independence rather than face political encirclement. Bymarch 1861 when lincoln was inaugrated seven states (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida,Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas) adopted ordinances of secesion, and theconfederate states of america with jefferson Davis as president had been formed.In his inugural adress lincoln held that secession was illegal and...

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