Stockman's History Extravaganza
A War That Was Not Civil
What We Are Covering Today
Compromises, free and slave states, the Abolitionist Movement, Dred Scott, Emancipation Proclamation, inequality of African American soldiers and Secession.
You Gotta Fight!
In 1861, the Civil War divided the nation. It was fought between northern states that
remained loyal to the Union and southern states that decided in favor of seccession. They wanted to rule themselves. Two of the most notable reasons were states rights and slavery.
As the nation grew, so did the debate over the role of the federal government.Some favored a stronger federal government.Many leaders in the South opposed such
ideas.With anti-slavery forces growing in the North, southern politicians and landowners feared a federal government with the power to impose legislation on states.In an attempt to protect southern economic interest and slavery, southern leaders advocated states rights.
Nullifying Crisis In SC!
In 1832, South Carolina began protesting high tariffs on British goods.One of South Carolina’s senators, John C. Calhoun took center stage for his pamphlet entitled Exposition and Protest.In it, Calhoun argued for state’s rights and asserted that any state could refuse to enforce a law it saw as unconstitutional.In 1832, S.C. first threatened to invoke this right and succeed.President Jackson was prepared to call in troops if necessary, but Henry Clay proposed a compromise that both sides could accept.
As sectional difference became more defined, the debate over slavery became more and more heated.As new regions became U.S. territories and eventually states, they threatened to upset the balance of power.
For this reason compromises were reached to maintain peace.The Missouri Compromise, the Compromise of 1850 were two.Some territories were allowed to decide by the issue of popular sovereignty. These people would vote on whether to allow slavery. Attached to the compromise was the Fugitive Slave Law. Many citizens in the north refused it.
Kansas and Nebraska Action
John Brown’s Raid
In October of 1859, a group of radical abolitionists led by John Brown attacked the federal arsenal (where weapons are made and stored). They hope to seize weapons and give them to slaves who could rise up in rebellion.Their plan failed when U.S. troops under the command of Colonel Robert E. Lee surrounded the arsenal and forced Brown to surrender.
Although the government hanged Brown, the failed raid intensified southern resentment of the abolitionist movement.Many southerners saw this as an affirmation that the South would have to shed blood to protect its way of life.
The Abolitionist Movement
In the 1830s, the abolitionist movement continued to grow.Among the key white figures in this movement were William Lloyd Garrison and the Grimke sisters.Garrison founded an influential anti-slavery newspaper called the Liberator. In 1831.Sarah and Angelina Grimke were members of a prominent slave-holding company in S.C. who won national acclaim for their passionate anti-slavery speeches.
Important African American abolitionists included Frederick Douglas. After escaping slavery in Maryland, Douglas educated himself and became very prominent. He helped with John Brown’s plan but did not participate in the raid.
Harriet Tubman, herself an escaped slave, was a hero of the abolitionist movement. She secretly returned to the south nineteen times to lead other slaves to freedom by way of the underground railroad.Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a
novel in 1852. It was a fictional account of the horrors faced by a slave family in the South.Though she was white and had never been a slave, her book motivated many people in the North to support abolition.
Secession NOT Succession
In 1854, a coalition of northern Democrats who opposed slavery, the Whigs, and the Free Soilers came together and formed the Republican party. While the Republicans did not call for the immediate abolition of slavery, they did adopt the position of opposing the extension of slavery into new territories.
By the time the presidential election of 1860 had arrived the country was at a boiling point regarding slavery.The election consisted of Stephen Douglas , a northern democrat who supported popular sovereignty, Vice President John Breckinridge, a southern democrat and a former congressman and lawyer form Illinois named Abraham Lincoln.
The South felt threatened by Lincoln’s because he opposed the expansion of slavery. The South felt like Lincoln would try and dismantle slavery in the South if elected.When Lincoln won the election, South Carolina responded by seceding from the Union in 1860.By 1861, six other states had seceded as well and they met in Montgomery, Alabama to draft their own constitution. Jefferson Davis was elected as president of the new Confederate States of America.