The Reason For The War Essay

1045 Words Nov 16th, 2015 5 Pages
Many historians believe that the reason for the war was strictly over the presence of slavery, particularly its expansion into the western states after the Mexican Cession. However, other historians argue that it was over the preservation of the Union, in which the ideals and principles established in the Constitution were violated when the Confederacy was created. Discussion over the split meanings of the war in the North is clearly demonstrated by Chandra Manning’s book, What This Cruel War Was Over, and Gary Gallagher’s The Union War. Manning argues that the North fought the war due to the abolition of slavery while Gallagher argues that the war was fought in the North to preserve the Union. While both historians have different arguments over the meaning for the war, they also have several synonymous points. One aspect in the meaning of the war for the North that both historians argue as important is the idea of proving that the Union is a model for the rest of the world. They both argue that the democracy that the Union promotes through self-government, liberties, freedom and honesty should be promoted world-wide and therefore it is important the Union win as a model for this form of government. Manning demonstrates this by stating, “The destruction of the Union would turn the idea of government based on liberty and equality into an object of ridicule, and dash all hopes for the success of ‘the experiment of our popular government.’” Manning therefore demonstrates…

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