Slavery In The North And South

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Although compromises on the issue of slavery sought to unite the North and South, it

only delayed the imminent war. By 1860 it became clear that growing sectionalism would make

compromise impossible. These sectional tensions were heightened by differing opinions on

western expansion, stark differences between northerners and southerners, and the election of

The Age of Manifest Destiny would unite Americans with the belief that God’s will

destined U.S expansion. With it came the ever-growing debate on the extension of slavery to the

west. The debate sparked great controversy between the North and South, creating a greater

divide in the nation. In an effort to gain control of Congress, both Northern and Southern parties

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The Fugitive Slave Act caused an angry uproar amongst

northerners. Senator Daniel Webster believed the Compromise of 1850 was the only hope to

save the nation. In his 1850 speech to the Senate, he asserted his beliefs by criticizing the North’s

refusal to follow the Fugitive Slave Act thereby violating the Compromise of 1850 (Doc D). If

the Northerners would not respect the clauses of the Compromise of 1850, then compromise

would never work. . Following the Compromise of 1850 was the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854,

which allowed the territories of Kansas and Nebraska to determine their status on slavery by

replacing the Missouri Compromise with popular sovereignty. This caused a frenzy of people to

illegally enter Kansas to vote whether the territory would allow slavery within its borders.

Popular sovereignty caused there to be two governments in Kansas. Bleeding Kansas was the

name given to the violence that manifested into a territorial civil war over slavery, The impact in

Congress was very severe, and in the case of Preston Brooks and Charles Sumner, violent.
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Northern Abolitionists,

created societies such as the American Anti-Slavery Society, standing on the belief that all slaves

receive immediate emancipation (Doc. B), where slaveholding Southerners believed that their

slaves were property, therefore protected under the Constitution: “Life, liberty, and property”.

Additionally, there was a large cultural disconnect between the North and the South, due to their

different lifestyles. The North was based on an industrial economy, and the South was built on

agriculture and slaves, the difference between the workingman and the “Southern gentlemen”

suggests the Herald of Georgia (Doc. F). Since the groups were so different, it was difficult for

Congress to make compromises that they both would agree on. These differences were enough

to create more sectional tension, causing a divide between the North and the South that would

lead to war.

An issue that plagued politics during the time of 1820-1860 was the House of

Representatives refusal to deal with issues of slavery. The Pinckney Committee resolved

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