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leading to the Civil War Lincoln/Douglas Debates

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1 leading to the Civil War Lincoln/Douglas Debates
Causes and Events leading to the Civil War Kansas – Nebraska Act Dred Scott Decision Lincoln/Douglas Debates

2 Kansas Nebraska Act of 1854 Divided the remainder of the Louisiana Purchase into 2 territories – Kansas / Nebraska New Territories would decide issue of Slavery by Popular Sovereignty

3 Kansas Nebraska Act of 1854 K/N Act nullified the line of the Missouri Compromise 1820 Reopened the Debate of Slavery in the United States

4 Dred Scott Decision U.S. Supreme Court 1857

5 Case went to the Supreme Court for a decision-----National issue
DRED SCOTT DECISION Slave from Missouri who moved with his owner to Illinois & Wisconsin, both free. They moved back to Missouri, which still recognized him as a slave, & his master died. He sued his master’s widow for his freedom, claiming he should be free since he had lived on free land for four years. Case went to the Supreme Court for a decision-----National issue Can a slave sue for his freedom? Is a slave property? Is slavery legal?

6 Supreme Court hands down the Dred Scott decision
Slaves cannot sue the U.S. for their freedom because they are property. They are not citizens and have no legal right under the Constitution. Supreme Court legalized slavery by saying that : Congress could not stop a slave owner from moving his slaves to a new territory Missouri Compromise and all other compromises were unconstitutional North refused to enforce Fugitive Slave Law Free states pass personal liberty laws. Republicans claim the decision is not binding Southerners call on the North to accept the decision if the South is to remain in the Union.

Q: Was Scott a U.S. citizen with the right to sue? A: NO Q: Did living in a free territory make Scott a free man? A: NO Q: Did Congress have the right to outlaw slavery in any territory? A: NO

8 RESULTS: • Dred Scott was not given his freedom. • The Missouri Compromise was found to be unconstitutional. Open to slavery through popular sovereignty (Compromise of 1850) Open to slavery through popular sovereignty (KS-NE Act) Missouri Compromise line is declared unconstitutional (Dred Scott Decision)

9 Abraham Lincoln Stephen Douglas

10 Lincoln – Douglas Debates
In 1858, Abraham Lincoln challenged incumbent Stephen Douglas for US Senate seat

11 Lincoln – Douglas Debates
Stephen Douglas: • Lincoln wrong for wanting to end slavery. • If Lincoln tried to end slavery, the U.S. could face civil war. • Believed each territory should decide on its’ own whether or not to allow slavery by using popular sovereignty.

12 Lincoln – Douglas Debates
Abraham Lincoln: • Lincoln believed slavery was evil and should be kept out of the territories. • Lincoln believed African Americans were guaranteed “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”, as stated in the Declaration of Independence. Did NOT, however, call for the abolition of slavery… only that it not spread beyond it’s current borders.


Lincoln and Douglas both ran for the U.S. Senate in Illinois in 1858. Debates followed by entire country -both candidates planning to run for President in 1860: Slavery was the big issue Lincoln stated: “A House Divided against itself cannot stand. Either we become all one or all the other.” He was against the EXPANSION of slavery

Douglas believed that slavery should be decided by the people: He was for popular sovereignty The Freeport Doctrine: “Honest Abe” tricked Douglas into admitting that Popular Sovereignty could work against expansion of slavery (what if S.C. says slavery can’t be touched?)… Southerners won’t support Douglas for presidency in 1860

16 Lincoln-Douglas Debates:Video (11:13)
Illinois in 1858, showing state senate districts (left) and house districts (right) Results: Lincoln-Douglas Debates:Video (11:13) • Douglas won the election by a slim margin. • However, Lincoln became well known throughout the nation.


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