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Unit 8: Civil War and Reconstruction

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1 Unit 8: Civil War and Reconstruction
Section One: Reasons for Texas Involvement in the Civil War

2 Texas as a U.S. State From 1845 to 1861, Texas grew economically, politically, and socially. Most Texans made a living through agriculture and they voted Democrat. After annexation though, American issues became Texas issues. Many different situations caused Texas to secede from the Union, join the Confederate States of America, and support the South in the Civil War.

3 Sectionalism Slavery was one of many issues that divided the U.S. along sectional, or regional, lines. Many people in the North supported abolition, while those in the South supported slavery. Also, the North and South differed economically. The North had an industrial economy, and many immigrants coming into the North helped to sustain their way of life. But the South had an agricultural economy that used slave labor to make a profit. If the North had not had immigrants to rely on, they may have been more tolerant of slave labor.

4 State’s Rights These, and other differences, led to sectional disagreements. For example, the North wanted tariffs, or taxes on imported goods, because they increased the cost of those items and urged people to buy U.S. made items. But people in the South argued that the states should have the choice to impose those tariffs based on the needs of each state. People who argued this state’s rights argument believed that states should have more power than the federal government.

5 Kansas-Nebraska Act In 1854, Congress passed the Kansas-Nebraska Act. It allowed the Kansas and Nebraska territories to vote on whether to be free or slave states. Many people on both sides of the issue quickly moved to the territories in hopes of getting a chance to vote on the issue. Disagreements over the results led to fighting and bloodshed. Sam Houston, a senator at the time, opposed the Kansas-Nebraska Act because he felt that it would lead to a Civil War.


7 The Dred Scott Case Dred and Harriet Scott were slaves. They sued their master for their freedom, claiming that since they had lived in a free territory, they should have been given emancipation. In 1857, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the Dred Scott Case, and greatly hurt the abolition cause. The court ruled that African Americans were not citizens, and therefore could not sue anyone in court. The court also ruled that Congress could not ban slavery in any federal territory. This decision led to increased tension between North and South.


9 State Secessions In 1860, Abraham Lincoln won the presidential election, without any electoral votes from the South. After the election, South Carolina became the first state to secede, or formally withdraw, from the Union. Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana then followed.

10 Texas Joins the Confederacy
Texans called for a secession convention, which angered many Unionists, or Southerners who wanted to stay part of the Union and work out their slavery disagreements. The delegates voted 166 to 8 to secede, and the decision was sent to the voters of Texas. On February 23, 1861, Texans voted for secession by 46,153 to 14,747. On March 2, 1861, Texas became the 7th state to secede from the United States.


12 The Confederacy Representatives from each of the seceding states met in Montgomery, Alabama and formed a government called the Confederate States of America, or the Confederacy. They wrote a constitution similar to the U.S. Constitution, but emphasized the sovereignty, or power, of the states over the federal government. It also preserved the right to hold slaves. Sam Houston, then the governor of Texas, refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Confederacy, and he was removed from office.

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