Causes of the Civil War

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    Causes of the Civil War

  • Northern and Southern Economies

    The economy of the North was based on manufacturing and paid labor, while the South's economy was based on agriculture (mainly cotton), and slave labor. The issue of slave labor will be important laeter on, as you will see.
  • Wilmot Proviso

    The Wilmot Proviso was a proposal that concerned the territories gained from Mexico in the Mexican-American war. Rep. David Wilmot of Pennsylvania proposed that Congress ban slavery in all territories gained from the Mexican-American war. The bill passed in the House, but failed in the Senate.
  • Free Soil Party

    The Free Soil Party was a party formed by Antislavery Whigs and Democrats. The Whig and Democrat parties hoped to win the election of 1848 by not taking a stand on slavery, but the Free-Soil party wanted to ban slavery in the territories gained by the U.S.
  • Election of Zachary Taylor

    Zachary Taylor was the Whig candidate for president in the election of 1848. He ran against Democrat Lewis Cass, and Free Soil candidate Martin Van Buren. Zachary Taylor won the election.
  • Compromise of 1850

    The Compromise of 1850 was created because of problems concerning the then territory of California. Since it was in the process of attaining statehood, there was a hug debate about slavery. Northerners cited the Missouri Compromise, saying California was above the Missouri compromise line. Southerners got mad and threatened to secede. A compromise was proposed by Sen. Henry Clay of Kentucky. He proposed that California be admitted free, Slave trade be banned in DC, Slave trade be unregulated in
  • Fugitive Slave Act

    The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 allowed special government officials to arrest people accused of runaway slaves. Those accused did not have right to trial. It also required Northerners to help catch runaway slaves.
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin

    Uncle Tom's Cabin was a book written by Harriet Beecher Stowe. It was about a kind slave named Uncle Tom, who was abused by his master, Simon Legree. The book exposed the horrifying conditions of slavery, and pushed Northerners to try to ban slavery.
  • The Kansas-Nebraska Act

    The Kansas-Nebraska act was an act pushed by Sen. Stephen Douglas. He wanted to create two new territories, the Kansas and Nebraska territories. Since those states were above the Missouri Compromise line, the territories would be free, and Southern people did not like that. He then proposed that the issue of slavery there be decided by popular sovereignty, which woud undo the Missouri Compromise.
  • Republican Party

    When the Whig party split, many Antislavery Whigs and Democrats joined together to form a new party called the "New Republican" Party. This party's main goal was to stop the spread of slavery to the Western Territories. In the 1854 congressional elections, the Republicans managed to win 105 out of 245 total seats available.
  • Bleeding Kansas

    The state of Kansas was flooded with illegal voters from Missouri. There were only 3000 registered voters there, but almost 8000 voted. Of all the 39 legislator picked, only 3 were antislavery. Antislavery people were angered, and held another election, and formed their own government. This caused widespread violence, including the attack on an antislavery town, and the Potawatomie creek attack orchestrated by John Brown.
  • Bloodshed in the Senate

    The leading abolitionist senator, Charles Sumner, made a fierce speech criticizing Kansas and its pro-slavery legislature. He also singled out Andrew Butler, a senator from South Carolina. The next day, Congressman Preston Brooks, Butler's cousin, attacked Sumner with a heavy cane. Sumner never recovered fully from his injuries.
  • The elecion of 1856

    The election of 1856 pitted Republican John C. Fremont against Democrat James Buchanan. Buchanan won, even though Fremont managed to win in 11 out of the 16 free states.
  • Dred Scott v. Sanford

    Dred Scott v. Sanford was a case brought to the Supreme Court by a slave named Dred Scott. He sued for his freedom because he was brought to Illinois and the Wisconsin territory, where slavery was illegal. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney ruled Scott was not free for two reasons. Firstly, Justice Taney ruled that he had no right to sue in a federal court, because African-Americans were not citizens. Secondly, slaves were property, and property rights were protected by the constitution.
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debates

    The Lincoln-Douglas debates were a series of debates that would judge who would be the Illinois Senate representative. The main focus of the debates was slavery. Douglas defended popular sovereignty, while Lincoln wanted to outright ban it. Douglas won, but now the nation knew Abraham Lincoln.
  • John Brown Attacks Harpers Ferry

    John Brown was a radical abolitionist who resorted to violence to accomplish his goals. He massacred a town in Kansas (Potawatomie Creek incident), and returned to New England. He wanted to start a slave revolt by stealing weapons from an armory in Harpers Ferry, Virginia. Forces commanded by Colonel Robert E. Lee of the U.S. army captured him, and killed 10 of his followers. He was sentenced to death by hanging, He died on December 2nd, 1859.
  • Political Parties Divide

    The Democratic party was in disagreement of the issue of slavery in the territories near the time of the election of 1860. Southerners wanted to legalize slavery in the Western Territories, but Northerners did not. After a few months of deliberation, a compromise could not be attained, and the party split in two; The Democrats and Southern Democrats.
  • Election of 1860

    The election of 1860 was a unique election that had four major candidates. This election would change the course of American History from there on. The main candidates were Republican Abraham Lincoln, Democrat Stephen Douglas, Southern Democrat John Breckinridge (the Democratic Party split), and Constitutional Union party candidate John Bell. Lincoln won, but the South did not agree with his views, so some states decided to secede. This election eventually caused the civil war.
  • Crittenden Plan

    The Crittenden Plan was a compromise proposed by Sen. John Crittenden of Kentucky. It aimed to stop the secession of the South, by giving them what they wanted. It consisted of six constitutional amendments, and four Congressional resolutions
  • South Carolina and Southern States Secede

    The secession of the Southern States began with South Carolina, which seceded on December 20, 1860. 10 more states eventually followed. The states were Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, Arkansas, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas.
  • Confederate States of America

    In early February of 1861, the seven states states that seceded from the Union had a convention in order to establish a new nation called the Confederate States of America. Four more states eventually joined the Confederacy after February 1861.