1850s TImeline

  • Kentucky & Virginia Resolutions

    Kentucky & Virginia Resolutions
    Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions
    The Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions were written in opposition to the Alien and Sedition Acts. They were written by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison in order to give the states the power to declare federal laws unconstitutional through nullification (Kentucky) or interposition (VIrginia).
  • Hartford Convention meets during war of 1812

    Hartford Convention meets during war of 1812
    The "Hartford Convention"
    The Hartford Convention was a meeting in 1814 and 1815 between New England polititcians in order to discuss the issues of the war of 1812. It also discussed the polititcal problems that arose from the rise in power of the national government. They Federalists also discussed the Louisianna purchase, 3/5 compromise, and embargo of 1807. The Federalists were soon eliminated as a major political party.
  • Missouri Compromise passed

    Missouri Compromise passed
    The Missouri Compromise
    The Missouri Compromise was an agreement between pro and anti-slavery polititians. It banned slavery North of the 36 30 line in the Louisiana territory (with the exclusion of Missouri).
  • Tariff of Abominations passed

    Tariff of Abominations passed
    Tariff of 1828
    The Tariff of 1828, labelled the Tariff of Abominations by Southerners, was a raise in taxes on goods imported internationally. This tax was instated in order to protect Northern industry and economy by forcing the South to import manufactured goods from the North, but it was criticized because of its damage to the Southern economy, not allowing them to purchase cheap foreign goods.
  • South Carolina tries to nullify

    South Carolina tries to nullify
    Nullification Crisis
    The nullification crisis was caused by South Carolina's Ordinance of Nullification, which stated that the tariffs of 1828 and 1832 could be decalered null and void by the South Carolina legislature within the state of South Carolina. This caused many arguments throughout the nation about the issues of nullification and the tariffs of 1828 and 1832.
  • Abolition of Slavery Act

    Abolition of Slavery Act
    Slavery Abolition Act 1833
    Britains Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 was passed by Congress in order to officially ban slavery in the UK. The Act only freed slaves under the age of six, and referred to older slaves as apprentices, who were later freed in two steps, the first being in 1838. Under the act, the slave owners were compensated for their loss of slaves.
  • Kansas-Nebraska Act passed

    Kansas-Nebraska Act passed
    Kansas-Nebraska Act
    The act, designed by Steven Douglas created the territories of Kansas and Nebraska, while repealing the Missouri Compromise. It allowed the territories of Kansas and Nebraska to decide wether slavery would be legal in said territories through popular sovereignty. It was created in order to enact a transcontinental railroad, which later became a problem when the other clauses were written into it.
  • Texas declares independence from Mexico

    Texas declares independence from Mexico
    Texas declares independence from Mexico
    The Texas Declaration of Independence was a document written during the Texas Revolution and adopted at the convention of 1836. The Texas Revolution was caused by political and cultural differences between the Texan settlers and Mexico and led to the United States annexation of Texas.
  • James Polk elected

    James Polk elected
    The Campaign and Election of 1844
    Jame's K. Polk, Democrat, ran against Henry Clay, Wig, in this election. James Polk won by 65 electoral votes and about 40000 popular votes. Polk won, primarily due to his views and advertisement of "Manifest Destiny" or the United States destiny to span the entire continent, from sea to shining sea. During his presidency, most notably, Polk saw America to victory in the Mexican War.
  • Mexican War

    Mexican War
    The U.S.-Mexican War
    The Mexican War or Mexican-American war was sparked by an argument between Mexico and the US over the border between Mexico and the newly aquired Texas. In order to insure that the border was where the US said it was, they sent troops down to the border. Mexico thought of this as a threat and declared a war on the US, which they soon lost. As a result of the war, the US gained California and Northern Mexico
  • Wilmot Proviso

    Wilmot Proviso
    Wilmot Proviso
    The Wilmot Proviso was a bill that would have banned slavery in the areas aquired by defeating Mexico in the Mexican war, had it passed. The Bill passed in the House of Representatives, but failed in the Senate. It was later reintroduced, but failed under the same circumstances because of the greater number of Southern senators.
  • California enters the Union

    California enters the Union
    The Compromise of 1850
    California entered the union as part of the Compromise of 1850. There were two parts to its admission as a free state, one of which, that was approved made California a free state, passed; the other, allowing slavery below the 35 parrelel north line failed.
  • Fugitive Slave Law enacted

    Fugitive Slave Law enacted
    The Compromise of 1850 and the Fugative Slave Act
    Under the Fugative Slave Law, runaway slaves were required to be reported by citizens. It also denied runaway slaves the right to a jury trial.
  • Publication of "Uncle Tom's Cabin"

    Publication of "Uncle Tom's Cabin"
    Harriet Beecher Stowe-Uncle Tom's Cabin
    Uncle Tom's Cabin was written by Harriet Beecher Stowe. It was remarked as helping lay the groundwork for the Civil War. This book was important for its anti slavery views, as well as its portraying of the oppressions of slavery.
  • Formation of Republican Party

    Formation of Republican Party
    The Origins of the Republican Party
    The Republican Party formed out of anger over the Kansas-Nebraska act. In its early years, the party was based upon the idea of liberal capitolism. The republicans were also very fond of the idea of high priced protective tariffs on imported goods.
  • "Border Ruffians" attack Lawrence

    "Border Ruffians" attack Lawrence
    The Sack of Lawrence
    Lawrence was attacked by the Border Ruffians because it was the anti-slavery center of Kansas. This attack was one of the events leading up to this era being known as bleeding Kansas. Both the North and South wanted Kansas to join their cause, leading to violent acts such as this.
  • Charles Sumner attacked

    Charles Sumner attacked
    Sumner Attacked in U.S. Senate
    Charles Sumner was violently attacked by Preston Brooks, a congressman from South Carolina. Sumner was attacked because of his work as an abolitionist and because of his work in founding the free soil party, which angered the South, especially Preston Brooks. Brooks was forced to resign, but was immediately reelected, as well as Sumner, as soon as he was ready to return (nearly 3 1/2 years later).
  • Pottawatomie Creek

    Pottawatomie Creek
    Pottawatomie Massacre
    A few days after the attack on Lawrence, John Brown and his 7 other accompanying followers decided to raise the bar on the war on slavery. They entered the Southern town of Pottawatomie Creek armed with knives, muskets, and broadswords and killed some of the townspeople. The South was furious in turn and made Brown a fugative, chasing him to the North where he was recieved as a "cult hero".
  • Dred Scott decision announced

    Dred Scott decision announced
    Dred Scott v. Sandford
    The Dred Scott decision was one of the more controversial cases in the US Supreme court. It denied Dred Scott his right to freedom, where many others had been freed through this route. Its verdict was that the US government could not regulate slavery in territories, as well as that slaves were not citizens and thus were not protected under the US Constitution.
  • Lecompton Constitution passed

    Lecompton Constitution passed
    Lecompton Constitution
    The Lecompton Constitution was a State Constitution written for Kansas that protected slavery and had a Bill of Rights that did not guarantee its rights for free blacks or slaves. The Bill was outright rejected by the community and criticized by Northerners.
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debates

    Lincoln-Douglas Debates
    Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1858
    The Lincoln-Douglas Debates were a series of debates in Illinois between Republican presidential nominee Abraham Lincoln and Northern Democratic nominee Stephen Douglas, on the issue of slavery. These debates focused on the moral implications of slavery, but were supported by arguments on wether or not the Constitution supported slavery. Stephen Douglas won the state's electoral votes by a small margin.
  • Fomation of Constitutional Union Party

    Fomation of Constitutional Union Party
    Constitutional Union Party
    The Constitutional Union Party was formed in part by John Bell. It believed that slavery was not a necessary issue to discuss and that the primary focus of our government should be to prevent Southern secession and better our nation.
  • Raid at Harper's Ferry

    Raid at Harper's Ferry
    John Brown's Harpers Ferry Raid
    More than three years after the events of Pottawatomie Creek, John Brown decided to take action once again. His goal was to incite the slaves of Harper's Ferry into rebellion and that others would follow after. He planned to take over the federal armory in Harper's Ferry, but in excecuting the plan, the slaves did not revolt and he was captured and then killed.
  • Election of 1860

    Election of 1860
    United States Presidential Election of 1860
    The election of 1860 was between Abraham Lincoln, John Bell, John C. Breckinridge, and Stephen Douglas. While Lincoln only won 40% of the popular vote, he won the electoral margin by a vast majority, thus securing the office for the Republicans against the spread of slavery.
  • Democrats split in 1860

    Democrats split in 1860
    Northern Democratic Party
    Under pressure from disagreements over the idea of popular sovereignty, in 1860, around the time of the election, the democrats split into two sections. The Northern Democrats supported the idea of popular soveriegnty and people's rights, the Southern Democrats wanted slavery everywhere and supported State's rights, specifically the South.