Presentation on theme: "Renewing the Sectional Struggle, 1848–1854"— Presentation transcript:
1 Renewing the Sectional Struggle, 1848–1854 Chapter 18Renewing the Sectional Struggle, 1848–1854
2 I. The Popular Sovereignty Panacea Democrats in 1848:Polk pledged himself to a single termThe Democratic National Convention turned to aging leader General Lewis CassTheir platform was silent on the burning issue of slaveryCass’s views were well known because he was the reputed father of popular sovereignty
3 I. The Popular Sovereignty Panacea (cont.) the doctrine that stated the sovereign people of a territory, under the general principle of the Constitution, should themselves determine the status of slavery.It had a persuasive appeal:Public liked it because it accorded with the democratic tradition of self-determination
4 I. Popular Sovereignty Panacea (cont.) Politicians liked it because it seemed a comfortable compromise between:The free-soilers’ bid for a ban on slavery in the territoriesSouthern demands that Congress protect slavery in the territories.Popular sovereignty tossed the slavery problem into the laps of the people in the various territoriesAdvocates of the principle hoped to dissolve it from a national issue to a series of local issues.Yet, popular sovereignty had one fatal defect:It might serve to spread the blight of slavery.
5 II. Political Triumphs for General Taylor The WhigsThey nominated Zachary Taylor, the “Hero of Buena Vista”Their platform:They dodged all troublesome issuesExtolled the virtues of their candidateHe would not commit himself on the issue of slavery extension.
6 II. Political Triumphs for General Taylor (cont.) The Free Soil party:Organized by ardent antislavery NorthernersCame out for the Wilmot Proviso and against slavery in the territoriesBoarded their appeal by advocating:federal aid for internal improvementfree government homesteads for settlersThey attracted industrialists opposed to Polk’s reduction of protective tariffs
7 II. Political Triumphs for General Taylor (cont.) Appealed to Democrats resentful of Polk’s settling:Part of OregonWhile insisting on all of TexasHarbored many northerners:Whose hatred was not directed at slavery as much as at blacksWho gagged at the prospect of sharing the newly acquired western territories with African AmericansContained an element of “Conscience Whigs”:Who condemned slavery on moral groundsThe free soilers chose Van Buren
8 II. Political Triumphs for General Taylor (cont.) Free-Soilers’ party platform:They condemned slavery not so much for enslaving blacks but for destroying the chances of free white workers to rise up from wage-earning dependence to the esteemed status of self-employmentThey argued that only with free soil in the West could a traditional American commitment to upward mobility continue to flourishFirst widely inclusive party organized around the issue of slavery and confined to a single section, they foreshadowed the emergence of the Republicans.
9 II. Political Triumphs for General Taylor (cont.) Taylor’s wartime popularity:1,360,967 popular and 163 electoral votesCass:1,222,342 popular and 127 electoral votesVan Buren291,263 ballots and apparently diverted enough Democratic strength from Cass in the critical state of New York.
10 General Zachary Taylor (1784–1850) This Democratic campaign cartoon of 1848 charges that Taylor’s reputationrested on Mexican skulls.p379
11 Map 18.1 California Gold Rush Country Miners from all over the world swarmed over the rivers that drained thewestern slope of California’s Sierra Nevada. Their nationalitiesand religions, their languages and their ways of life, arerecorded in the colorful place names they left behind.Map 18-1 p380
12 III. “Californy Gold”The discovery of gold on the American River near Sutter’s Mill, California, early in 1848, (see Map 18.1):The most reliable profits made by those who mined the miners:By charging outrageous rates for laundryAnd other personal servicesThe “forty-niners” chasing their dream of gold, most notably Australia in 1851.
13 III. “Californy Gold” (cont.) The California gold rush:Attracted tens of thousands of peopleA high proportion of the newcomers were lawless men, accompanied or followed by virtueless womenAn outburst of crime inevitably resultedRobbery, claim jumping, and murder most commonplace
14 III. “Californy Gold” (cont.) Majority of Californians were decent and law-abiding citizens, needed protection:Grappled earnestly to erect an adequate state government.Encouraged by President Taylor, they drafted a constitution in 1849 that excluded slaveryThen appealed to Congress for admission, bypassing the usual territorial stageWould California prove to be the golden straw that broke the back of the Union?
15 Placer Miners in California Cheap but effective, placermining consisted of literally“washing” the gold out ofsurface deposits. No deepexcavation was required. Thiscrew of male and female minersin California in 1852 was using a“long tom” sluice that washedrelatively large quantities of ore.p381
16 IV. Sectional Balance and the Underground Railroad The South of 1850 was relatively well-off:Nation’s leadership: Zachary Taylor in the White HouseBoasted a majority in the cabinet and on the Supreme CourtIts cotton fields were expanding, cotton prices were profitably highFew believed that slavery was seriously threatened
17 IV. Sectional Balance and the Underground Railroad (cont.) The South was deeply worried by the ever-tipping political balance:15 slave states and 15 free statesAdmission of California would destroy the delicate equilibrium in the SenatePotential slave territory under the American flag was running shortAgitation in the territories of New Mexico and Utah for admission as nonslave statesCalifornia might establish a precedent.
18 IV. Sectional Balance and the Underground Railroad (cont.) Texas had additional grievances:Huge area east of the Rio Grande and north of forty-second parallelEmbracing half the territory of present-day New Mexico (see Map 18.2)The federal government was proposing to detach TexasHot-blooded Texans threatening Santa Fe taking what they regarded as rightfully theirs.
19 IV. Sectional Balance and the Underground Railroad (cont.) Southerners:Angered by the nagging agitation in the North for the abolition of slavery in the District of ColumbiaLooked with alarm on the prospect of a ten-mile oasis of free soil between slaveholding Maryland and slaveholding VirginiaMore disagreeable to the South was the loss of runaway slaves:Assisted by the Underground Railroad—freedom trainAmazing conductor: Harriet Tubman.
20 IV. Sectional Balance and the Underground Railroad (cont.) 1850 southerners demanded new and more stringent fugitive-slave law:Old one proved inadequate to cope with runawaysThe abolitionists who ran the Underground Railroad did not gain personally from their lawlessnessSlave owners were the losers.Estimates of losing 1000 runaways a year out of some 4 million slaves.
21 A Stop on the Underground Railroad Escaping slavescould be hidden in this smallupstairs room of Levi andCatharine Coffin’s House inNewport, Indiana. The beds weremoved in front of the door tohide its existence. The Leviswere Quakers from NorthCarolina who, during twentyyears in Newport, helped morethan 2,000 fleeing slaves safelyreach Canada—and freedom.p381
22 Harriet Tubman (on left) with Some of the Slaves She Helped to Free John Brown called her “General Tubman” for her effective work in helping slaves escape to Canadaon the Underground Railroad. During the Civil War, she served as a Union spy behindConfederate lines. Herself illiterate, she worked after the war to bring education to thefreed slaves in North Carolina.p382
23 Map 18.2 Texas and the Disputed Area Before the Compromise of 1850Map 18-2 p382
24 V. Twilight of the Senatorial Giants Congressional catastrophe in 1850:Free-soil California wanted admission“Fire-eaters” in the South threatened secessionPlaned to meet in Nashville, Tenn. to withdraw from the UnionThe “immortal trio”—Clay, Calhoun, and Webster—met in Congress for the last time
25 V. Twilight of the Senatorial Giants (cont.) Henry Clay-73 years old:Played a critical roleThe “Great Compromiser”—to reprise the role he played in Missouri and nullificationHe urged that the North and South both make concessionsAnd that the North partially yield by enacting a more feasible fugitive-slave law.
26 V. Twilight of the Senatorial Giants (cont.) Senator John C. Calhoun-88 years old and dying of tuberculosisThe “Great Nullifier”—Approved Clay’s proposed concessionsBut rejected them as not providing adequate safe-guards for southern rightsHis impassioned plea was to leave slavery alone, return runaway slaves, give the South its rights as a minority, and restore the political balance.He wanted to elect two presidents; one from the North and one from the South, each wielding a veto.
27 V. Twilight of the Senatorial Giants (cont.) Daniel Webster-86 years old:Upheld Clay’s compromise measuresHe urged all reasonable concessions to the South, including a new fugitive-slave law with teethAs for slavery in the territories, he asked, why legislate on the Subject?His conclusion: that compromise, concession, and sweet reasonableness would provide the only solutions.
28 V. Twilight of the Senatorial Giants (cont.) Webster’s famed Seventh of March speech (1850) was his final:His tremendous effort visibly strengthened Union sentimentPleasing to the banking and commercial centers of the North—stood to lose millions by secessionThe Free-Soilers and abolitionists upbraided him as a traitor, worthy of bracketing with Benedict Arnold.These reproaches were most unfair. Webster had long regarded slavery as evil but disunion as worse.
29 VI. Deadlock and Danger on Capitol Hill The stormy congressional debate (1850) was not finished:The Young Guard from the North was comingWilliam H. Seward:A strong antislaveryite, came out unequivocally against concessionArgued that Christian legislators must obey God’s moral law as well as man’s mundane law
30 Deadlock and Danger on Capitol Hill (cont.) He appealed to exclude slavery in the territories with reference to an even “higher law” than the ConstitutionThis term may have cost him the presidential nomination and the presidency in 1860.President Taylor seemed bent on vetoing any compromise passed by CongressHis military ire was aroused by the threats of Texas to seize Santa Fe.
31 VII. Breaking the Congressional Logjam President Taylor unknowingly helped the cause of concession by dying suddenly:Vice-President Millard Fillmore took the reinsAs presiding officer of the Senate—was impressed with the arguments for conciliationHe gladly signed the series of compromise measuresThe balancing of interests in the Compromise of 1850 was delicate in the extreme (see Table 18.1).
32 VII. Breaking the Congressional Logjam (cont.) Heat in the Congress:Northern states, “Union savers”—Clay, Webster, Douglas—orated on behalf of the compromiseSouthern “fire-eaters” were violently opposed to concessionIn June 1850, southern extremists met in Nashville:Took a strong position in favor of slavery but condemned the compromise measure
33 VII. Breaking the Congressional Logjam (cont.) The second Era of Good Feelings dawned:Disquieting talk of secession subsidedPeace-loving people, both North and South, were determined that compromises should be a “finality”And the explosive issue of slavery should be buried.
35 Henry Clay Proposingthe Compromise of1850 This engravingcaptures one of themost dramaticmoments in the historyof the United StatesSenate. Vice PresidentMillard Fillmorepresides, while on thefloor sit several of the“Senatorial Giants” ofthe era, includingDaniel Webster,Stephen A. Douglas,and John C. Calhoun.p385
36 VIII. Balancing the Compromise Scales Who got the better deal of the 1850 Compromise?North (see Map 18.3):California, a free state, tipped the balance permanently against the SouthTerritories of New Mexico and Utah were open to slavery—basis of popular sovereigntyThe iron law of nature—the “highest law”—in favor of the free soil.
37 VIII. Balancing the Compromise Scales (cont.) South:Urgently needed more slave territory to restore the “sacred balance”If not from the recent conquests from Mexico, then the Caribbean was one answerThe South had halted the drive toward abolition in the District of ColumbiaMost alarming of all, the new Fugitive Slave Law (1850)—”the Bloodhound Bill.”
38 VIII. Balancing the Compromise Scales (cont.) Fugitive Slave Law (1850):Stirred up a storm of opposition in the NorthFleeing slaves:Could not testify on their ownWere denied a jury trialFederal commissioner who handled the case of a fugitive:If the runaway were freed, five dollarsAnd ten if not
39 VIII. Balancing the Compromise Scales (cont.) Freedom-loving northerners who aided a slave to escape were liable to heavy fines and jail sentencesThis “Man-Stealing” Law was abhorrentIt touched off an explosive chain reaction in the NorthThe Underground Railroad stepped up its timetableMass. made it a penal offense for any state official to enforce the new federal statuteOther states passed “personal liberty laws”
40 VIII. Balancing the Compromise Scales (cont.) Abolitionists protested against the man-stealing lawsBeyond question, the Fugitive Slave Law was a blunder on the part of the SouthSlave catchers redoubled their effortsWith delay of enforcement:The South was forging ahead in population and wealth—in crops, factories, foundries, ships, and railroadsDelay added immensely to the moral strength of the North1850s did much to bolster the Yankee will to resist secession, whatever the costThus the Compromise of 1850 won the Civil War for the Union (see Map 18.4)
41 Map 18.3 Slavery After the Compromise of 1850 Regarding the Fugitive Slave Law provisions of the Compromise of 1850, Ralph Waldo Emerson declared in May 1851 at Concord,Massachusetts, “The act of Congress is a law which every one of you will breakon the earliest occasion—a law which no man can obey, or abet the obeying, without lossof self-respect and forfeiture of the name of gentleman.” Privately he wrote in his journal,“This filthy enactment was made in the nineteenth century, by people who could read andwrite. I will not obey it, by God.”Map 18-3 p386
42 Protesting the Fugitive Slave Law, 1850 Thecartoonist makes bittersport of the hated lawand heaps scorn onDaniel Webster, on hishands and knees at theright, who voted for thelaw as part of theCompromise of 1850.The outspokenabolitionist WilliamLloyd Garrison isdepicted much morefavorably on the left.p387
43 IX. Defeat and Doom for the Whigs 1852 Democratic nominating convention met in Baltimore:It nominated the second “dark horse”—Franklin Pierce, from New HampshireWeak and indecisive figureWar injuries caused him to be known as “Fainting General”Enemyless because he was inconspicuousProsouthern northerner, he was acceptable to the slavery wing of the Democratic Party.
44 IX. Defeat and Doom for the Whigs (cont.) His platform revived the Democrats’ commitment to territorial expansion as pursued by President PolkHe emphatically endorsed the Compromise of 1850, the Fugitive Slave Law and all.The Whigs convened in Baltimore; missed a splendid opportunity to capitalize on their record in statecraft:Having won in the past with war heroes, they turned to “Old Fuss and Feathers” Winfield ScottThe ablest American general of his generation.
45 IX. Defeat and Doom for the Whigs (cont.) The Whig platform praised the Compromise of 1850 as a lasting arrangement.The political campaign degenerated into a dull attack on personalities.The Whig party was hopelessly split:Antislavery Whigs of the North took Scott as their nominee but deplored his platform—which endorsed the hated Fugitive Slave LawSouthern Whigs doubted Scott’s loyalty to the Compromise of 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Law, accepted his platform but spat on the candidate
46 IX. Defeat and Doom for the Whigs (cont.) General Scott, victorious on the battlefield, met defeat at the ballot box.John P. Hale took northern Whigs vote from ScottHale took 5% of the popular votePierce won in a landslide 254 electoral vote to 42; the popular count was closer: 1,601,117 to 1,385,453.The election of 1852’s frightening significance:It marked the effective end of the disorganized Whig party.
47 IX. Defeat and Doom for the Whigs (cont.) Whigs’ complete death:They augured the eclipse of national party and the rise of purely sectional political alignmentsGoverned at times by the crassest opportunismWon two presidential elections (1840, 1848) in their colorful career, war heroesGreatest contribution was to help uphold the ideal of the Union through their electoral strength in the South and through the eloquence of their leaders: Henry Clay and Daniel Webster.
48 Map 18.4 The Legal Status of Slavery, from the Revolution to the Civil War Map 18-4 p388
49 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border The spirit of Manifest Destiny was revived:A continuous Atlantic-to-Pacific transportation route that would effectively sever the two Americas (see Map 18.5)British encroachment in this area drove the governments of both the United States and New Granada to conclude treaty in 1848It guaranteed the American right of transit across the isthmus in return for Washington’s pledge to maintain “perfect neutrality” on the route—the “free transit of traffic might not be interrupted.”
50 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border (cont.) The agreement led to:Theodore Roosevelt’s assertion of American control of the Panama Canal in 1903Led to the construction of the first “transcontinental” railroadClayton-Bulwer Treaty (1850) stipulated that neither America nor Britain would fortify or seek executive control over any future isthmian waterway (later rescinded by the Hay-Pauncefote Treaty of 1910; see p. 628).
51 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border (cont.) Southern “slavocrats” looked southward:Because of boundary limits the South looked toward NicaraguaAmerican adventurer, William Walker, tried repeatedly to grab control of this Central American countryInstalled himself president in July 1856 and promptly legalized slaveryA coalition of Central American nations formed an alliance to overthrow him.President Pierce withdrew diplomatic recognition and he died before a Honduran firing squad in 1860.
52 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border (cont.) Sugar-rich Cuba:Enticing prospect for annexationThey already had a large population of enslaved blacksIt might be carved into several states, restoring the political balance in the SenatePresident Polk offered $100 million to Spain for CubaThey refusedAdventurers undertook to shake the tree of Manifest Destiny
53 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border (cont.) The secret Ostend Manifesto quickly leaked outNorthern free-soilers rose up in wrath against the “manifesto of brigands”The red-faced Pierce administration hurriedly dropped its reckless schemes for Cuba.The slavery issue thus checked territorial expansion in the 1850s.
54 X. Expansionist Stirrings South of the Border (cont.) Spanish officials in Cuba seized the American steamer Black WarriorNow was the time for the President to provoke a war with Spain and seize CubaThe secretary of state instructed the American ministers in Spain, England, and France to prepare recommendations for the acquisition of CubaThe three, meeting in Ostend, Belgium, drew up a top-secret dispatch:Ostend Manifesto—it urged the administration to offer $120 million for Cuba.
55 Map 18.5 Central America,ca. 1850, Showing British Possessionsand Proposed CanalRoutes Until P resident TheodoreRoosevelt swung into action withhis big stick in 1903, a Nicaraguancanal, closer to the UnitedStates, was generally judged moredesirable than a canal across Panama.Map 18-5 p389
56 XI. The Allure of AsiaHow could Americans tap more deeply the supposedly rich markets of Asia?Opium War—fought by Britain to have the right to peddle opium in the Celestial Kingdom:Britain gained free access to five so-called treaty portsControl of the island of Hong KongPresident Tyler dispatched Caleb Cushing to secure comparable concession for the United StatesCushing arrived at Macao in early 1844.
57 XI. The Allure of Asia (cont.) Treaty of Wanghia: the first formal diplomatic agreement between U.S. and China on July 3, 1844:Cushing secured some vital commercial rights and privileges from the Chinese“Most favorable rights” were granted to the U.S.“Extraterritoriality”—provided trying Americans accused of crimes in China before American officials, not in Chinese courts.
58 XI. The Allure of Asia (cont.) American trade flourished in ChinaThe treaty opened American missionaries; thousands cameChina success prompted American goals for Japan:Japan had earlier withdrawn into an airtight cocoon of isolationism for over 200 yearsThe warrior dynasty of Tokugawa Shogunate was very protective of Japan’s insularityBy 1853 Japan was ready to emerge from its self-imposed quarantine.
59 XI. The Allure of Asia (cont.) President Fillmore dispatched Commodore Matthew C. Perry in 1852 for JapanHis four smoke-belching “black ships” steamed into Edo (later Tokyo Bay) on July 8, 1853Once on shore, Perry requested free trade and friendly relations then left promising to return the next year to receive the Japanese replyPerry returned in February 1854 and persuaded the Japanese to sign the landmark Treaty of Kanagawa on March 31, 1854
60 XI. The Allure of Asia (cont.) Perry had cracked Japan’s two-century shell of isolation wide-openLess than a decade later the “Meiji Restoration” would end the Shogunate and propel the Land of the Rising Sun:Headlong into the modern worldEventually into epochal military crash with the United States.
61 XII. Pacific Railroad Promoters and the Gadsden Purchase Acute transportation problems was another legacy of the Mexican WarCalifornia and Oregon were 8000 miles west of the nation’s capitalThe sea routes were too longCovered wagon travel was slow and dangerousFeasible land transportation was imperativeA transcontinental railroad was the only real solution.
62 XII. Pacific Railroad Promoters and the Gadsden Purchase (cont.) Where to build the railroad?James Gadsden, minister to MexicoSanta Anna was still in power and needed moneyGadsden negotiated a treaty in 1853:Which ceded to the United States the Gadsden Purchase for $10 million.Best route for the southern railroadNortherners wanted Nebraska to be organized
63 Commodore Matthew Perry in Japan, 1853 Among Perry’s gifts to the Japanese was a miniature railway, complete with engine, cars, and track, which made a vividimpression on the Japanese artist who created this work.p391
64 Map 18.6 The Gadsden Purchase, 1853 Map 18-6 p392
65 XIII. Douglas’s Kansas-Nebraska Scheme In 1854 Senator Stephen A. Douglas delivered a counterstroke to offset the Gadsden southern expansion westwardHe longed to break the deadlock of North-South westward expansionHe had invested heavily in Chicago real estate and railway stockHe desired for the Windy City to be the eastern terminus for the proposed Pacific railroadHe was trying to get the South to support his scheme.
66 XIII. Douglas’s Kansas-Nebraska Scheme (cont.) The proposed Territory of Nebraska would be sliced into two territories, Kansas and Nebraska (see Map 18.7)Slavery would be decided by popular sovereigntyKansas, west of slaveholding Missouri, presumably would choose to become a slave stateNebraska, west of free-soil Iowa, presumably would become a free state.Douglas’s Kansas-Nebraska scheme flatly contradicted the Missouri Compromise of 1820:Which forbid slavery in the proposed Nebraska Territory north of the sacred 36-30’ line.
67 XIII. Douglas’s Kansas-Nebraska Scheme (cont.) The only way to open the region to popular sovereignty was to repeal the ancient compact outrightTo southerners here was the chance for another slave statePresident Pierce threw his weight behind the Kansas-Nebraska BillBut the Missouri Compromise could not be brushed asideDouglas rammed the bill through Congress, with strong support from many southernersThe truth is that Douglas acted somewhat impulsively and recklesslyHe predicted a storm, but grossly underestimated itIn the end, he enjoyed a high degree of popularity.
68 Douglas Hatches a Slavery Problem Note the already hatched Missouri Compromise, Squatter Sovereignty, andFilibuster (in Cuba), and the about-to-hatch Free Kansasand Dred Scott decision. So bitter was the outcry againstDouglas at the time of the Kansas-Nebraska controversythat he claimed with exaggeration that he could havetraveled from Boston to Chicago at night by the light fromhis burning effigies.p393
69 Map 18.7 Kansas and Nebraska, 1854 The future Union Pacific Railroad (completed in 1869) is shown. Note the Missouri Compromise line of ’ (1820).Map 18-7 p393
70 XIV. Congress Legislates a Civil War The Kansas-Nebraska Act:Was one of the most momentous measures to pass CongressIt greased the slippery slope to Civil War:Antislavery northerners were angered and future compromise with the South would be immeasurably more difficultThe Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 was a dead letterThe Act wrecked two compromises—those of 1820 and 1850
71 XIV. Congress Legislates a Civil War (cont.) Northern abolitionists and southern “fire-eaters” saw less and less they could live withThe growing legion of antislaveryites gained numerous recruitsThe proud Democratic Party was shattered by the Kansas-Nebraska ActUndoubtedly the most durable offspring of the Kansas-Nebraska blunder was the new Republican Party.The Republican Party:Sprang up in the Middle West-Wisconsin and Michigan
72 XIV. Congress Legislates a Civil War (cont.) It gathered dissatisfied elements, including Whigs, Democrats, Free-Soilers, Know-Nothings, and other foes of the Kansas-Nebraska ActIt also included Abraham LincolnIt never was a third party but:It would not be allowed South of the Mason-Dixon line.The Union was in dire peril.