Presentation on theme: "Unit 5 Notes 2 Events that led to the Civil War The new Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 required citizens to catch runaway slaves. Those who let slaves get."— Presentation transcript:
Unit 5 Notes 2 Events that led to the Civil War
The new Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 required citizens to catch runaway slaves. Those who let slaves get away could be fined $1,000 and spend 6 months in jail. The northerners disliked this act. A new court was set up to hear cases regarding runaway slaves. If a slave was returned, the presiding judge would get $10. If the judge did not send a slave to the south, he only earned $5.
Southerners felt that the Fugitive Slave Act was justified because they considered slaves property. In addition, Southern slave catchers roamed the North, sometimes capturing free African Americans.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin In 1852, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, written by Harriet Beecher Stowe, was released. It became one of the most important books in United States history! The book details the life of a fictional slave who is beaten by his owner, eventually Tom is beaten to death. This book convinces many northerners to support abolitionists.
The Kansas-Nebraska Act While the Fugitive Act and Uncle Tom’s cabin increased tensions between the north and south, the issue of slavery brought bloodshed to the west. In 1854, Senator Douglas of Illinois drafted a bill to organize territorial governments for Nebraska Territory. He proposed that it be divided into two territories – Nebraska and Kansas.
To get Southern support, he suggested that the decision about whether to allow slavery in each of these territories be settled by popular sovereignty. Popular sovereignty is a system where the residents vote to decide an issue. If this bill passed, it would result in getting rid of the Missouri Compromise by allowing people to vote for slavery in territories where it had been banned. The bill passed. It was known as the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Stephen Douglas
Bleeding Kansas Proslavery and antislavery settlers rushed into Kansas territory to vote for the territorial legislature. In 1855, 5,000 Missourians came and voted in the election illegally. As a result, the official Kansas legislature was packed with proslavery representatives.
Antislavery settlers boycotted the official government and formed a government of their own. In May, a proslavery mob attacked the town of Lawrence, Kansas. The attackers destroyed offices and the house of the governor of the antislavery government. As news of violence spread, civil war broke out in Kansas. It continued for 3 years, and the territory came to be called “Bleeding Kansas.”
Dred Scott was a slave who lived in Missouri for many years. He moved with his slave owners to the Wisconsin Territory where slavery was illegal. After Scott’s owners died, he was helped by abolitionist lawyers to file suit for his freedom. Scott reasoned that he lived in free territory and ought to be free. Dred Scott
His case, Dred Scott v. Sandford, reached the Supreme Court in The Supreme Court ruled that Dred Scott was not a U.S. citizen. As a result, he could not sue in U.S. Courts. The Court also ruled that slaves were property. Chief Justice Roger Taney
Minnesota Connection – Dred Scott and his wife lived at Fort Snelling for a time. You can see where he lived if you visit the Fort.
Brown Attacks Harpers Ferry In 1859, John Brown planned to take the weapons in the U.S. arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia. He hoped to inspire slave to rebel against slavery. John Brown
On October 16, 1859, Brown and his followers captured the arsenal. He sent out word to arm local slaves but no slaves wanted to join with Brown. Brown and his followers were captured by the U.S. military. They were tried, convicted, and executed.
Presidential Election of 1860 In 1860, Stephan Douglas and Abraham Lincoln ran against each for president. Lincoln had become well known from their debates about slavery. This time, Lincoln won, becoming the 16th president.
As soon as Lincoln won the election, the South started to secede. This means the South split from the Union. They no longer wanted to be part of the United States. Supporters of secession based their arguments on the idea of states’ rights. They said they had voluntarily joined the union, so they could leave when they wanted. On December 20, 1860, South Carolina became the first state to secede. The eleven states that had seceded formed the Confederate States of America. They named Jefferson Davis as president.