What Caused the Civil War?

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The Civil War, the bloodiest conflict in America, erupted in 1861 as a result of differences between the northern and southern states in the United States. Among these diversities in politics, economics, geography, and society, social and political differences were the most significant. The Election of 1860 and the Dred-Scott Decision politically led to the outcome of war. In addition, social disagreements including the Fugitive Slave Act and the abolition movement furthered divided the North and South. The violent Civil War would never have started without the rise of political and social conflicts. Political issues such as the Dred Scott Decision and the Election of 1860 developed tensions that led to the Civil War. When Dred Scott, an African American, sued for his freedom, the Supreme Court formed the Dred Scott Decision. Scott sued based on the Missouri Compromise, and stated that he had been in free land when his owner died, therefore he should be free. This application to sue was deemed invalid by the Supreme Court it ruled that any African Americans, including Scott, would never become citizens. Congress now has no power to abolish slavery in federal territories. The Supreme Court announced that, “...Congress could not prohibit someone from taking slaves into federal territory...Congress had no right to ban slavery in any federal territory” (United States History Independence to 1914, 452.) Northerners were shocked because before, Congress was allowed to ban slavery in federal territories. This new ruling meant that Congress no longer had the authority to stop the spread of slavery. Because of this abrupt change in political power, the northerners feared that slavery would spread into federal territories. These tensions ... ... middle of paper ... ...y deserved no rights. These impelling disagreements upon the view of slavery created a contrast in daily life from the North and South. 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. Increasing controversies between sides due to political and social problems eventually ignited the Civil War.
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