US Sectionalism

938 Words2 Pages

From colonial times there were differences in geography that gave rise to variations in culture and economy in the United States. Due to the differing characteristics, a sectional economy molded the United States into two distinct regions: the north and the south. The north, a commercial society, which supported industry and commerce while the south, an agrarian civilization, flourished in the production of raw materials with use of slaves. The two economies were both self-supporting and capable to create a stronger, more productive nation. The regional differences sought to build America, in turn threatened to destroy it. Many Historians believe that the Civil War was constructed over the issue of slavery. However, the concerns of states' rights versus federal rights and the unfair legislation representation were the principal causes of the Civil War. The United States during the 1800s supported the two distinct economies of the north and the south. Both north and south economies had many similarities and a several differences. The northern economy was built on a commercial platform of trade-dependent, industrial society. During the 1800s, the north experienced an Industrial Revolution. Many factories sprung up in prominent cities such as New York, leading to an increase unskilled labor. Population sizes grew due to the swell in job opportunities, urbanization, and immigration. There were also, intricate railway systems and numerous waterways that allowed for simple trade and shipping among major cities. While the north experienced dramatic economic change, the south remained relatively unchanged from the 1800s to the 1850s. The southern economy was a slave-based, agrarian society. The south's main resource of production w... ... middle of paper ... ...ile the southerners disliked the tariff because it raised the cost on manufactured goods and they believed it was an unfair taxation, thereby naming it the "Tariff of Abominations". The south's disapproval of the high tariff led to the nullification crisis, led by John C. Calhoun. This group claimed that the tariff of 1828 was unconstitutional and called for the tariff to be nullified. The regional differences in the United States that served to build the nation, threatened to destroy it. As the two societies of the north and south diverged and sought to be a strong nation, many differences and a few similarities arose. The north pushed for industrial production while the south worked to produce raw materials. These two economies created a sectional nation that one day would become a battle ground over states' rights versus federal rights and unfair representation.

Open Document