Civil War Slavery Causes

Great Essays
Final Exam Question 1: Slavery The Cause of the Civil War

Prior to 1830 Slavery was viewed as a necessary evil among many Americans. As a result of the Constitutional Convention the founders banned the importation of new slaves, put a temporary hold on debates to abolish slavery, and instituted the three-fifths rule for federal representation and taxation. The founding fathers, hoped through providence this regrettable evil would eventually become extinct in time (Stamp pg, 157). Following the American Revolution slavery had been on this path and was on the decline in many states. However, the invention of the cotton gin greatly increased the profitability of cotton. Cotton became the main crop produced in the South and transformed slavery
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However, after the Civil War, Southerner leaders, Neo-Confederates and some revisionists historians downplayed the importance of slavery as the main cause of the Civil War. Instead these critics have surmised that a multitude of causes centered around various social and economic sectional differences as well as state’s rights theories that eventually lead to war. Regardless of these claims, the preservation of slavery and white superiority are ultimately the underlying lynch pins at the core of these theories that economic, political or social differences were the causes of the Civil War. Moreover, to ensure Southern secession, Southern leaders protected this racially motivated system by spreading fear of racial equality, war between the races and amalgamation of the races at the hands of Northerners who opposed slavery. Southern leaders later deflected their attempts to maintain their race based social and economic hierarchy with theories of states’ rights and sectional differences after their defeat in the Civil …show more content…
The Southern economy benefitted from the export of cotton, along with Northern and European textile markets due to industrialization. After the war some historians and English Lords suggested the Civil War was fought in part because the North supported protective tariffs. While Southerners, on the other hand, had pushed for free trade. Southerners did believe these tariffs had favored the Northern economy at the expense of the Southern economy (Stamp pg, 155). However, if the Civil War had been fought over economic disputes resulting from tariffs, then the war would have occurred in 1832. South Carolina was the only state to threaten secession over tariffs. President Jackson’s threat to use force in upholding the supremacy of national laws eliminated any further threats of secession (Stamp pg 156). Economic differences did not escalate into war due disputes over tariffs. Tensions rose due to Southern fears that slavery might be abolished. A New Orleans paper claimed the Southern Minority would have to accept some forms of economic oppression at the hands of the federal government like tariffs and the national bank. Although, the South insisted it would not accept interference in the institution of slavery (Stamp pg, 181). Instead the tension between the North and South escalated as Southerners

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