Bruce Catton,The Civil War. Boston: Mariner Books publishers, 2004. 400 pgs., bibliography, index, maps, illustrations.
Bruce Catton was born and raised in Benzonia, he was an American historian who studied at Oberlin College in Ohio. However, he would never finish his degree, with the U.S. entry into World War I, he joined the Navy. Catton became a reporter and wrote for various newspapers after the War. He served with the war production board during World War II. Catton was editor of American Heritage Magazine from 1954 through 1959. Catton won the Pulitzer Prize for historical writing and the National Book Award in 1954. Catton was named senior editor of the magazine in 1959 and held that position until his death. He lived in
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Slave labor would provide cotton at a cheap rate and a great profit. The South would profit from the slaves greatly. Slavery left the Northern people with a bad conscience, especially after the Fugitive Slave Act. Which encouraged the event of run away slaves, which was believed to cause the expansion of the Underground Railroad. According to Catton, although slavery was the moral issue of the nineteenth century that divided the political leaders of the land, the average American had very little interest in slaves or slavery. Most Southerners were small farmers that could not afford slaves. Most Northerners were small farmers or tradesmen that had never even seen a slave. But political leaders on both sides were very interested in slaves and slavery. The South's economic system was based upon cotton and slaves. Politicians of the south believed that if slavery was abolished the entire social economic system would probably collapse. Hence any political action that took place that threatened the slavery system of the South received the undivided attention of the South's political leaders, many of whom, were slave owners. A series of legislative actions, most notably the Missouri Compromise of 1820, had been enacted by Congress to put limits on the propagation of slavery, but compromise with northern and southern interests was always kept in mind. Catton includes that the U.S. Congress passed the Kansas-Nebraska Act on May 30, 1854. It