Due to this worry of losing their “way of life” due to Lincoln’s victory in the election, the South decided to secede from the Union, which eventually lead to the Civil War. There was a complex set of factors that led up to the Civil War, the abolitionist movement was one of these, but was definitely not of most importance. Slavery was the main focus of this war, but the center was not the freedom of slavery. Many Americans had little interest in slavery, but cared about their way of life.
Reconstruction made the nation as a whole feel ‘reunited’, but it was viewed as a failure and waste immediately after its completion (Boyer, 471). It laid the groundwork for the Civil Rights Movement by passing the 13, 14, and 15th amendments, even though they would not be implemented to protect minority rights for nearly a hundred years. Reconstruction also established a policy of treating African-Americans as second-class citizens. The nation was taught that it was alright to treat blacks as inferior people because the government would not even guarantee them the right to vote in state elections. However, Reconstruction did pave the way for share-cropping and the factory system, which would lead to an economic boom as American expanded.
Before the Civil War, the country was separating between North and South. The causes of this splitting are disagreements over tariffs and the matter of slavery, which was legal in the South but had gradually been banned by states north of the Mason-Dixon Line. As the US acquired new territories in the west, unpleasant disputes erupted over whether or not slavery would be legitimate in those newly acquired territories. Southerners became paranoid and began to believe the addition of new non-slaveholding states but no new slaveholding states would give control of the government to abolitionists, and the institution of slavery would be outlawed completely. The slave holding south increasingly felt its interests were threatened, particularly since slavery had been prohibited in much of the new territory that had been added west of the Mississippi River.
However, despite having the cold Civil War in the 1860s, all the effort to gain a “new birth of freedom” went in vain. Although the North were advance than the South and were to defeat them in the war, they had in reality lost. By the 1880s, the South had defeated the weakened North and had re-enslaved the African American. After the Civil war, the American government had passed many amendments to insure the rights of African American but all went in vain, as the South did not follow them. Document A shows that Amendment XIII, which was passed in 1865 right after the Civil War, prohibited the use of slavery within the US.
Social disputes in different viewpoints of people regarding slavery eventually initiated the Civil War. Political and social issues set off the spark that led to the Civil War. Forbidding Congress to ban slavery in federal territories, the Dred Scott Decision showed the Supreme Court’s power over Congress, which led to disunity and shock in the northern states. By electing Lincoln during the election of 1860, the South’s role on political influences diminished harshly. The Fugitive Slave Act and the abolition movement expressed people’s opinions on the debate involving slavery, between the northern and southern states.
Andrew Johnson, who became President of the U.S. in 1865, had his own Reconstruction plan, but it turned out to be unsuccessful largely because of the unfair ways in which blacks were treated. According to his plan, pardons would be offered to all southern whites except wealthy Confederate supporters and the main Confederate leaders. Conventions were to be held by the defeated southern states and new state governments were to be formed. These new governments had to make a vow of loyalty to the nation and abolish slavery in order to rejoin the Union. However, this plan did not offer the blacks a role in this process; he left the responsibility of determining the black people’s roles to the southern states.
From the start of the American Civil War, 1860, until the end of the Reconstruction, 1877, the United States of America endured what can be considered a revolution. Prior to the year 1860, there was a lack of union because of central government power flourishing rather than state power. Therefore, there was a split of opposite sides, North and South, fighting for authority. One major issue that came into mind was of slavery. At first, there were enactments that were issued to limit or rather prevent conflict to erupt, such as the numerous compromises, Missouri Compromise and the Compromise of 1850.
However, the political action that the north took caused the creation of the “personal liberty” laws, which oddly changed north’s perspective towards slavery. The disagreement on the extension of slavery was not only the eyes of the north anymore. Although, the Compromise of 1850, put a more humane side to the solution, the problem towards slavery is yet to be solved..
“If anything, the opposition was more powerful and effective in the North than in the South.” (Why Did the Confederacy Lose?, pg 120) However the powerful opposition in the North w... ... middle of paper ... ...t and see it as a way to get rid of the moral burden of slavery. The conservative stands Lincoln originally held were broken with the Emancipation Proclamation, causing a massive internal struggle in the South to bring them down. This is why the North had already won to the extent of Lincoln’s conservative political stands. “Having taken an oath to preserve and defend the Constitution, which protected slavery, “I did not consider that I had a right to touch the ‘State’ institution of ‘Slavery’ until all other measures for restoring the Union had failed….”” (Who Freed The Slaves, pg 203) The attrition strategy was halted with the mental conversion of the war being a moral war and the internal divisions in the South would finally clinch victory for the North. However all other advantages were possessed by the North and therefore the North had won the Civil War before it began to the extent of Lincoln’s conservative political stands.
He exposed the failures within the system of the government and the constitution of the America, due to the fact that previous measures have never been taken to define the purpose of freedom seekers in society and their function as “contraband of war”. For much of American history slaves were considered as property with no rights, the Civil war was pivotal in changing this. He quickly assumed that as former laborers of the south, the suitable and most adequate new profession would be that of laborers of the war for the North. Union Generals would also assume the same definition of freedmen but the Federal government had the final say over the topic. 2.