2 VocabularyBorder ruffians – proslavery bands from Missouri who often rode across the border into Kansas to battle the antislavery forces.
3 Kansas-Nebraska ActAmericans had hoped that the Compromise of 1850 would end the debate over slavery in the west. Before long, though, proslavery and antislavery forces were battling for control over Kansas.
4 The Compromise of 1850 dealt mainly with lands that were part of our winnings from the Mexican War. It did not deal with the Louisiana Purchase. In 1854, the Nebraska Territory applied for statehood. Congress wanted to figure out a way that they could let Nebraska in without dividing the nation once again. Their solution was to split the Nebraska Territory into Nebraska and Kansas. Then, the people living in those new states would get to vote if they wanted slavery or not (this is called popular sovereignty). This was called the Kansas -Nebraska Act.
5 The Crisis Turns Violent Congress hoped that the slavery issue in these new states would be solved peacefully. They did not get their wish. Southern slave states and northern free states sent thousands of people to settle in both Kansas and Nebraska. Both sides were literally fighting for control of the two states.
6 In 1855, Kansas had elections to choose lawmakers In 1855, Kansas had elections to choose lawmakers. Hundreds of slave owners from the south crossed the border and illegally and voted in the election. Their votes were enough to elect a proslavery legislature. Northerners refused to accept the new laws, and they elected a legislature of their own. That meant that there were two competing governments in Kansas. Armed gangs roamed the territory looking for trouble.
7 Bleeding KansasHi, I am John Brown. I came to Kansas because God sent me to punish those who support slavery, so me and my four sons are gonna go murder some people.Violence was rampant in Kansas. A northerner named John Brown, who believed that God had sent him to Kansas to stop slavery, rode to a nearby town in the middle of the night, dragged five proslavery settlers out of bed, and murdered them. In just a year, more than 200 people had been killed in Kansas as a result of the violence. Newspapers around the country began to refer to it as bleeding Kansas.
8 Sen. Charles Sumner of Massachusetts made a speech criticizing southerners for their pro slavery views, especially Sen. Andrew Butler, of South Carolina. Butler’s nephew, Rep. Preston Brooks marched into the Senate and beat Sumner with a heavy cane until he was unconscious.
9 Dred Scott v. SandfordBecause Congress was in an uproar, Americans looked to the Supreme Court to settle the issue and restore peace. The supreme court heard a case from a slave named Dred Scott. Scott had been born into slavery, and had moved around the country with his master. For a few months, Scott lived in free territory. Dred Scott’s lawyers argued that because Scott had lived in free territory, he was free.
10 And The Verdict Is…The Supreme Court ruled that Dred Scott did not even have the right to be in court since he was not a citizen. Also, the court clearly stated that slaves were considered to be property. The verdict went on to rule that the US government had no right to outlaw slavery in any territory. Southerners rejoiced and northerners were outraged.This court decision deepened the division between the north and the south
12 Review Why did Stephen Douglas propose the Kansas-Nebraska Act? How did the Kansas-Nebraska Act lead to violence?How did white southerners, African Americans, and white northerners react to the Dred Scott decision?If you were a member of the Supreme Court, how would you have ruled and why ?