They even elected their own president, Jefferson Davis. Jefferson Davis wanted to secede from the Union peacefully, but the problem of federal property arose. Forts were federal property, but the South would not give them up easily. Since the Harpers Ferry raid, Southern states began to prepare for battle knowing that there was much tension between the North and South. They saw that the North would do anything to get rid of slavery.
Lincoln’s main priorities were to preserve the Union, and reserve the republic. Slavery, in some ways, was a nonissue to Lincoln unless the republic was threatened. Lincoln was dead set opposed to secession, which greatly worried the South. The South realized that if Lincoln won the election, they would lose power. 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.
Thus, the issues of pro-slavery and anti-slavery arose between the Southern Democrats and Northern Republicans in the 1850s. The North desired to halt the expansion of slavery into western territories while the South strongly opposed. These two opposing parties led to radical abolitionism in the North, William Henry Seward and John Brown, and extreme secessionism in the South, James Henry Hammond, and South Carolina Ordinance of Secession. Due to their strict ideologies regarding slavery, both parties could not compromise on the issue of the expansion of slavery. Therefore, according to Americans in the years prior to the Civil War, conflict was inevitable.
The Southerns were worried about their everyday lives being altered by the abolishing of slavery. The Missouri Comprise made all the new territories free states, meaning the Southern slave states would soon be outnumbered in congress. Another of the South's reason for succession was their fear of an economic collapse due to the abolishment ... ... middle of paper ... ...ion spies the Merrimack would have gone on a spree of sinking Union ships. The Merrimack was supposed to be a war winner for the confederates until the Union made their own, in the end "The Merrimack" was self destructed so the Union could not get it. The Confederate Army had many pieces that all came together for one grand army.
These three documents were examples of the unfairness of the Southern state rights. Before Missouri became a state it was believed by the southern states that it would be admitted as a slave state. To the South’s surprise and dismay, Republican Representative James Tallmadge of New York proposed an amendment that would prohibit the importation of slaves and ultimately bring about the emancipation of all slaves born in Missouri. The free state-slave state ratio had been equal and admitting Maine as a free state and Missouri as a slave state would keep it equal. The bill passed the House but failed to pass the Senate.
Politically, the Northerners contributed immensely to the opening of the Civil War. John Brown's Raid at Harpers Ferry made the south believe the Northerners had a whole scheme to ban slavery. The South wondered how or why they would remain in the Union when a "murderous gang of abolitionists" were running around. Southerners also believed that this violent abolitionist's view was a common one shared by the entire North. This act of the North made the South resent the North's pushy ways and begin to think of leaving the Union.
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.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe was a catalyst for the Civil War due to its depiction of slavery as harsh and brutal. The main character, a slave named Uncle Tom, and one of the slave owners, Simon Legree were used to attack the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 and the institution of slavery that it protected. Throughout the novel, characters, scenes and plots were Stowe’s persuasions to the reader that slavery is evil, un-Christian, and should not be tolerated. She illustrates the fact that slavery and Christian values oppose each other and are not in any way compatible. Uncle Tom’s Cabin outraged the southerners and made the northerners more aware of the brutality of slavery.
The Republican party threatened the South's expansionism and therefore Southerners felt that they had no other choice but to secede. The Republican party had no intention of ending slavery in the South or freeing the slaves; they just did not want slavery to expand, "Because the scene of intestine struggle will thus be transferred from the south to the North." (N.Y Tribune 11/29/1860) The United States was divided into three groups by the time the Civil War began: those who believed in the complete abolition of slavery, those who were against the expansion of slavery, and those who were pro slavery. Many like to believe that the moral aspect of slavery is what made it an issue. When the Republican candidate, Abraham Lincoln, was elected in 1860, the South felt that its expansionism was being threatened, and because expansion was vital to the
Abraham Lincoln believed and made known that he thought that “slavery was an evil… that [every man] had the right to freedom and fruits of their labor” (PowerPoint). Many Southerners (included the Whig party) feared that President Lincoln if elected would outlaw slavery all together. Because of this dispute, Southern states (including South Carolina) began the process of secession wanting to make a political statement. This statement, however, brought about a war in which the Northern and Western states and territories fought to preserve the Union, and the South fought to establish Southern independence as a new confederation of states under its own constitution.