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The Sectional Crisis ( )

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Presentation on theme: "The Sectional Crisis ( )"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Sectional Crisis (1820-1860)
Question: What were the reasons and events that divided Americans so severely that by 1861, they would take up arms against one another?

2 Point #1: North & South developed quite differently from the earliest settlements
Economy developed around manufacturing, shipping, commerce, small artisans “modern” factory system born in the 1820’s at Lowell, MA South Economy developed around agriculture By the 1820’s cotton became #1 crop

3 The South had a narrow economy dependent upon cotton.
By the early 19th century, the industrial north had most of the nation’s industry, transportation network, and population. With expansion westward, North also grew majority of nation’s basic food crops. The South had a narrow economy dependent upon cotton.

4 The slavery issue Cotton became so dominant a crop, it was called “King Cotton” South needed cheap labor to produce cotton …slavery since the 1600’s Early 1800’s, Southerners apologized for it as a “necessary evil” By the 1830’s, no longer apologized…now defended it as a “positive good” (JC Calhoun’s speech)

5 What about slavery in the new territories?

6 Missouri Compromise (1820)
1st clash: Missouri Applied for admission in 1819 Missouri Compromise (1820) Maine in as free state…Missouri as slave Rest of Louisiana Territory split into 2 spheres: 1 free & 1 slave….dividing line was 36o 30’ north latitude Problem of slavery in federal territories was solved…or was it?

7 Missouri Compromise (1820)

8 The Tariff Issue What is a tariff ?
Duty (tax) placed by gov’t on imported goods Makes foreign goods more expensive than American-made Tariff intended to protect American industry

9 The Tariff Issue Several tariffs passed by Congress to protect northern industry from British-made goods Southerners needed cheap goods from Europe The Tariff of 1828 was the real problem…Southerners called it the “Tariff of Abominations” South Carolina declared the state’s right to nullify the Tariff…that the Tariff was “null and void within the state’s boundaries…”

10 States’ Rights ? Argument that dated back to Art. of Confed.
the real issue: states’ rights v. federal rights…which holds ultimate authority? With Sen. John C. Calhoun leading, So. Carolina threatened to secede from the Union Congress passed the Force Bill… Gave Pres. Andrew Jackson authority to use military, if necessary, to enforce collection of the tariff on imports Congress agreed to phase out the Tariff over several years & S. Carolina backed down

11 Next Crisis: Land won from Mexico….slave or free?
David Wilmot (PA) offered this on the floor of the Senate in 1846: “slavery…shall never exist in any part of any territory obtained from Mexico” The Wilmot Proviso never became law but the slavery issue had become a national debate

12 New Crisis: California
Gold discovered in 1848…population exploded overnight By 1850, CA ready for admission to US How to settle the slavery issue since part of CA was north, part south of ’ ? Henry Clay (“Great Compromiser”) offered this:

13 The Compromise of 1850 CA in as a free state
Utah and N. Mexico Territory to be divided into 2 separate territories… slavery to be decided by “popular sovereignty” Tough fugitive slave law to be adopted


15 Fugitive Slave Law Added to the Compromise to placate southerners
Tougher laws on runaway slaves (many had run away using the safe houses of the Underground RR to escape to freedom in the North) Punishment for those who helped runaways

16 William Lloyd Garrison published powerful and influential newspaper
Abolitionists Opposed to slavery…wanted to see it “abolished” (ended) William Lloyd Garrison published powerful and influential newspaper The Liberator that continued the fight to end slavery

17 Uncle Tom’s Cabin Harriet Beecher Stowe
Published in 1852…publicized horrors of slavery Became best-seller in the North and in Europe Served to further “polarize” public opinion on the slavery debate

18 Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854)
Stephen A. Douglas (Dem. From Illinois) intro’d bill in Congress that would divide the territory west of Missouri into 2 territories: Nebraska and Kansas To get southern support for a northern RR route, he also proposed popular sovereignty to decide the slavery issue in the 2 new territories (if passed, it would repeal the Missouri Comp.)

19 Kan.-Neb. Act (cont’d) Congress passed the Act in 1854…what would happen?

20 Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854)

21 “Bleeding Kansas” From both sides of the slavery issue, people rushed into Kansas to sway the vote Kansas became a bloody, violent battleground b/t pro and anti-slave forces.

22 Dred Scott Decision (1857) Who was Dred Scott and what was the case about? Supreme Court ruled that: Scott had no right to sue (not a citizen) Missouri Compromise was unconstitutional…violated right to property (5th Amendment)

23 Summary As election of 1860 drew near, North and South were deeply & impossibly divided Southerners feared Northern abolitionists would destroy southern culture and economy (in short, everything!) Slavery had become the “lightning rod” issue

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