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Slavery in the territories: Lead- up to the civil war

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1 Slavery in the territories: Lead- up to the civil war
Chapter 8

2 What to do with the Mexican Cessation?
Wilmot Proviso Proposed law in 1846 that all territory taken from Mexico would be free of slavery Passed by the House, never in the Senate—never became a law Symbolic—represented conflict over extending slavery to the territories Slavery in the Territories Northern Option—have Congress ban slavery in the territories Southern Option—have Congress protect right to own slaves in the territories Third Option—Popular Sovereignty Popular Sovereignty First devised by Lewis Cass during the 1848 election Congress makes no law concerning slavery, people who move to the territories vote on whether or not there will be slavery Problems?

3 Election of 1848 Polk (D) stepped down voluntarily
Democrats—Lewis Cass Whigs—Zachary Taylor (war hero/general) Both major candidates were pro-slavery (or appeared that way) Third Party—Free-Soil Party—Martin Van Buren Northern Party, anti-slavery Those morally opposed to slavery Those who were opposed to slavery for selfish reasons Industrialists (higher tariffs) Small farmers (free homesteads) Foreshadowed the creation of Republican party in 1854 Taylor won 1848

4 Compromise of 1850 What to do with the Mexican territories
Most thought that these issues could be put off for a while, but California Gold Rush of changed that California ready to become a state (free state) by 1850 This would upset the balance of free vs slave states Other Issues What would happen to the rest of the Mexican territories in regards to slavery? Runaway slaves and the underground railroad—South wanted to stop both Slavery in Washington DC—becoming a problem for most Northerners Borders for Texas—Texas wanted very large borders, opponents of slavery wanted small borders (less slave territory in US)


6 Compromise of 1850 North Got South Got California as Free State
New Fugitive Slave Law Smaller Borders for Texas Texas State Debt assumed by Federal Govt Slave Trade (but not slavery) banned in Washington DC Slavery still allowed in DC New Mexico and Utah territories open to slavery through popular sovereignty

7 Compromise of 1850 (Cont.) Passed as a series of laws not as one big law Wouldn’t have passed any other way, shows how contentious the issues had become Almost didn’t pass—Taylor died last minute, new President signed off on it Last major piece of legislation of Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, John Calhoun Effects Free-slave balance in the Senate? Reaction North very upset over the fugitive slave law South upset that the North was upset

8 The Demise of Manifest Destiny
After 1850 many identified Manifest Destiny with Southerners who wanted to add more slave territory to the US, enough northern opposition to halt US expansion in North America Gadsden Purchase 1853—US bought a small piece of land from Mexico in order to build a rail road, last addition of territory to the continental US


10 Renewal of the Slavery Question: Kansas Nebraska Act 1854
Background Stephen A. Douglas—From Chicago, wanted a transcontinental railroad to run from Chicago to the west coast Needed to organize the unorganized territory (old part of the Louisiana Purchase) closed to slavery from Missouri Compromise Kansas-Nebraska Act would organize that territory into the Kansas and Nebraska territories Needed Southern votes—offered to open both territories to slavery via popular sovereignty (in effect repealing the Missouri Compromise) Act passed


12 Effects of Kansas Nebraska Act
Further divided the North and South Led to the death of the Whig party Split over the issue of slavery Left only one truly “national” political party—Democrats Led to the Creation of the (modern) Republican Party in 1854 Northern-only political party—only represented one half of the country Old free-soil party + Old northern Whigs Republican Coalition Abolitionists (Liberty Party) Opposed to slavery for economic reasons (Free Soilers, anti-slavery Democrats) Northern business interests (old Whigs) Eventually anti-immigrant groups (old Know Nothings) Led to “Bleeding Kansas” Pro and Anti slavery forces fighting in the Kansas Territory

13 Republican Policies/Positions
Slavery NOT technically abolitionists—wanted to stop the spread of slavery, were okay with allowing slavery to remain were it already existed Get rid of popular sovereignty everywhere that it currently existed (including and especially the Kansas-Nebraska Act) Internal Improvements Federally financed transcontinental railroad and other railroads Free farms for small farmers—homesteads Tariffs Advocated high protective tariffs for US industry Government/Constitution Advocated a broad interpretation of the Constitution Lots of power for the federal govt, less for the states

14 Bleeding Kansas 1855 Territorial Elections 1856 Violence
Pro-slavery voters from neighboring Missouri flooded the polls (illegal) Pro-slavery government illegitimately elected Anti-slavery Free Soilers established their own government Two governments passed contradictory laws, competed with one another 1856 Violence Early 1856—Proslavery forces raid and burn down part of the Free Soil Town, Lawrence May 1856—John Brown (vehement abolitionist) attacked/killed 5 pro- slavery men at Pottawatomie Creek in retaliation for Lawrence raid Civil war in Kansas broke out—pro and anti slavery forces fought each other until the beginning of the Civil War in 1861

15 The Dred Scott Case 1857 Background Issues Verdict Aftermath
Dred Scott was a slave brought to free territory (Minnesota) by his owner Brought back into slave territory Scott argued that the years he spent as a slave in a free territory made him free Issues Could a slave (or any African American) sue in US courts? Did they have any legal standing? Did living in a free territory make a slave free? Could Congress pass laws (like the Missouri Compromise) that outlawed slavery in the territories or anywhere else? Verdict Scott (and all African Americans) had no legal standing in US courts The 5th amendment protects individual’s property from the Federal Govt., and since slaves are property Congress cannot ban slavery anywhere The Missouri Compromise was unconstitutional (Judicial Review) Aftermath Major North-South division over the case Northerners saw it as the South undemocratically using the court to get their way South saw it as the North not abiding by a decision that they disagreed with

16 Other Conflicts over Slavery
Harriet Beecher Stowe: Uncle Tom’s Cabin 1852 Incredibly popular abolitionist novel Described how slavery split apart slave families—made many formerly apathetic Northerners care about slavery and the fugitive slave law Made the South upset—viewed it as a skewed and inaccurate view of slavery Sumner-Brooks Affair 1856 Preston Brooks (Southern Representative) attacked Charles Sumner (Northern abolitionist Senator) in Congress Lincoln-Douglas Debates 1858 Debated the extension of slavery into the territories, Dred Scott, Kansas- Nebraska Act, and popular sovereignty Made Lincoln a household name as someone opposed to slavery in both the North and the South

17 John Brown’s Raid on Harper’s Ferry 1859
Brown launched a plot to start a slave revolt in the South, free the South’s slaves by force, and establish a new country somewhere in the South for freed slaves Received some funding from a small number of extremely radical abolitionists Attacked the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry Virginia (West Virginia) hoping to acquire more weapons for his revolt and to begin rallying slaves to his cause Problems: Not many slaves in western Virginia (mountain white territory) Townspeople surrounded Brown’s followers Marines sent in, and Brown and his followers captured Aftermath: Brown tried and executed for treason by State of Virginia Becomes a martyr to many abolitionists in the North South is furious that Brown would be celebrated in the North, also angry that Northern abolitionists helped to fund his failed rebellion

18 Politics during the 1850s Fillmore (Whig) took over from Taylor Franklin Pierce (Democrat) def. Winfield Scott (Whig) Last presidential election for the Whigs Election of 1856 James Buchanan (Democrat) vs. John C. Fremont (Republican) vs. Fillmore (American Party) First presidential election for the Republican Party Fremont took most of the Northern States—narrowly lost the election to Buchanan—even though he got NO southern votes Swing of a few key states (PA, IL, IN) would give the Republicans victory in the next election


20 Election of 1860 Democrats split over the slavery issue:
Northern Democrats—Stephen Douglas Popular Sovereignty Southern Democrats—John Breckenridge Slavery everywhere (Dred Scott Case) Constitutional Union Party formed to avoid civil war—John Bell Avoid Civil War—no mention of slavery Republicans nominated Abraham Lincoln Slavery okay where it already exists, outlawed in the territories Other Issues: tariffs, railroad, internal improvements, homesteads Results Lincoln swept the Northern States (except part of NJ)—won the election Breckenridge took the deep South Bell took the “border states” Douglas got more votes than Bell or Breckenridge but only won Missouri and part of NJ—only candidate to receive electoral votes from both free and slave states


22 Aftermath of the 1860 Election
South Carolina voted to leave the Union (secede) December of 1860 Six other southern states voted to secede by February of 1861 (SC, FL, GA, AL, MS, LA, TX) Last chance for compromise: Crittenden Compromise Named after the Kentucky Senator who proposed it Series of Constitutional amendments meant to appease the South Amendment protecting slavery where it existed Take the line from the Missouri Compromise and extend it across the continent—anything north of that line would be free, anything south of that line would be slave Rejected by Lincoln—never enacted Significance? Country on verge of war, what issue are they talking about to avoid civil war?


24 The Beginning of the Civil War: Fort Sumter
7 states that left formed the Confederate States of America (CSA) in March of 1861 Still no war Buchannan still President—until March 1861 Federal Property Crisis and Fort Sumter Confederate states began to confiscate federal property within their borders (forts, arsenals, post offices, courthouses, etc) Most federal property taken without a fight Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor South Carolina—island, easily defended by Federal (Union) soldiers March 1861 Lincoln becomes President—still no fighting April 1861 Confederates demand that Fort Sumter surrender, commander refuses, Confederates attack the fort Federal soldiers surrender, Civil War has begun 4 more slave states join the Confederacy (Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina) 4 slave states (later 5) remained in the Union (Border States)—Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, Delaware, (West Virginia)


26 What Caused the Civil War?
Why did the South secede in ?

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