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The Coming of the Civil War
Transcript of The Coming of the Civil War
Secession did not necessarily mean war.
What do the Founding
Constitution of the
For representation and taxation: slaves to be counted as 3/5ths of a person
Slave trade provision: not to be abolished before 1808
The federal government to pass Fugitive Slave laws to enable slave masters to recover their runaway property
What was the relationship between the states and the federal government?
How was power distributed between them?
What powers do the states have to oppose federal actions that the states see as inimitable to their interests?
Where does sovereignty lie?
South Carolina Exposition and Protest (1828)
John C. Calhoun
Webster’s Second Reply to Hayne (1830)
“The Constitution has formed the States into a community only to the extent of their common interests, and drawing the line of separation with consummate skill....I never use the word nation. We are not a Nation, but a Union, a confederacy of equal and sovereign states.”
1776 Declaration of Independence
1787 Northwest Ordinance
1793 Fugitive Slave Law
1797 The Columbian Orator first published
1808 International Slave Trade ended
1820 Missouri Compromise
1828 Tariff of Abomination
1829 David Walker's Appeal ... to the Colored Ciitzens of the world
1830 South Carolina Exposition and Protest
1831 William Lloyd Garrison, The Liberator
1836 Texas Independence
1845 Annexation of Texas
1845 Autobiography of Frederick Douglass
1846-48 Mexican War
1846 Wilmot Proviso
1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
1850 Compromise of 1850 (Fugitive Slave Act)
1852 Publication of Uncle Tom's Cabin
1854 Kansas Nebraska Act
1854 Formation of the Republican Party
1856 Bleeding Kansas
1857 Dred Scott Decision
1858 Lincoln-Douglas Debates
1859 John Brown's Raid on Harper's Ferry
1860 Election of Lincoln
Great maps courtesy of Wikipedia
What powers did Congress have to legislate on the question of slavery?
Could Congress, for example, exclude slavery from the territories?
Does the constitution give the federal government the power to decide the fate of slavery anywhere in the United States and in particular in the territories?
When does slavery become a moral issue?
The Cotton Gin
"Ours is a Federal Government--a Government in which not individuals, but States as distinct sovereign communities, are the constituents. To them, as members of the Federal Union, the territories belong; and they are hence declared to be territories belonging to the United States. The States, then, are the joint owners."
Missouri admitted as a slave state
Maine admitted as a free state
Slavery prohibited from all of the Louisiana Purchase Territory north of the 36 30 line of latitude.
40 percent of white families in the south owned slaves in 1790
25 percent owned slaves in 1860; of these 70 percent owned fewer than 10 slaves
Most slaves lived on plantations with 100+ slaves
1. California: free state
2. Remainder of Mexican cession divided into two territorial governments: Utah and New Mexico with no restriction on slavery
3. Texas boundary dispute settled with New Mexico
4. Congress to enact a new fugitive slave act
5. Abolition of slave trade (not slavery) in DC.
6. Congressional disavowal of interference with slavery below 36 30'.
Thomas Jefferson on the Missouri Compromise, "This momentous question, like a fire bell in the night, awakened and filled me with terror....I considered it at once as the knell of the Union. It is hushed indeed for the moment, but this is a reprieve only, not a final sentence."
The Constitution represented the first major compromise on the question of slavery. Others included the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and the Compromise of 1850.
Peter Kolchin, a historian of slavery, has written that “The Constitutional Convention showed the founding fathers at their most cautious with respect to slavery.”
Samuel Johnson, a British writer, asked, “why do we hear the loudest yelps for liberty from the drivers of negroes?”
"All men are created equal..."
"Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government,..."
Election of Lincoln
Lincoln: 180 1,865,593
Douglas: 12 1,382,713
Breckinridge 72 848,356
Bell: 39 592,906
Total v. Lincoln 123 2,823,975
South Carolina ~ December 20, 1860
Mississippi ~ January 9, 1861
Florida ~ January 10, 1861
Alabama ~ January 11, 1861 (61-39)
Georgia ~ January 19, 1861 (166-130)
Louisiana ~ January 26, 1861
Texas ~ February 1, 1861
Frederick Douglass called it a great book, “the master book of the 19th century.”
Stephen Douglas, Dem. Senator from Illinois, proposed a bill in 1854 to organize the Kansas and Nebraska territory to enable the building of a transcontinental railroad with a northern route through Illinois. He included the provision that these territories could make their own decision regarding slavery (popular sovereignty). The bill opened up the possibility of slavery within the Louisiana Territory thus negating the Missouri Compromise.
Once the Kansas Nebraska Act passed the debate over the extension of slavery into the territories shifted to the territories themselves, and highlighted the problems with popular sovereignty. Settlers from both the North and the South rushed into the Kansas territory. Slaveholders wanted to win the new territory for slavery while northern organizations promoted the migration of free settlers. Violence ensued....
Was Scott a citizen and did he have the right to sue in federal court?
Did prolonged residency in a free state and territory make him a free man?
Did Congress have the power to exclude slavery from the territories?
A black man "had no rights which the white man was bound to respect. . . the negro might justly be reduced to slavery for his benefit."
To free Scott after his residence in free territory would amount to depriving his master of his property without due process a violation of the 5th amendment.
The Missouri Compromise restricting slavery from the territories above the 36 30' line unconstitutional.
"It is the rape of a virgin Territory, compelling it to the hateful embrace of Slavery; and it may be clearly traced to a depraved longing for a new slave State, the hideous offspring of such a crime, in the hope of adding to the power of slavery in the National Government. Yes, sir, when the whole world, alike Christian and Turk, is rising up to condemn this wrong, and to make it a hissing to the nations, here in our Republic, force, aye, sir, FORCE has been openly employed in compelling Kansas to this pollution, and all for the sake of political power." Charles Sumner, Senator for Massachusetts
"Are you in favor of conferring upon the negroes the rights and privileges of citizenship? If you desire to allow them . . . to vote on an equality with yourselves . . . and to make them eligible for office. . . then support Mr. Lincoln." "I do not question Mr. Lincoln's conscientious belief that the negro was make hi equal, and hence is his brother, but for my own part, I do not regard the negro as my equal and positively deny that he is my brother or any kin to me whatever." Stephen Douglas
"This declared indifference, but, as I must think, covert real zeal for the spread of slavery, I cannot but hate. I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our republican example of its just influence in the worldenables the enemies of free institutions, with plausibility, to taunt us as hypocritescauses the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many really good men amongst ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil libertycriticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest." Abraham Lincoln
I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races, that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And in as much as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied everything. I do not understand that because I do not want a negro woman for a slave I must necessarily want her for a wife. My understanding is that I can just let her alone.
Compact Theory of Government
Article VI: The Supremacy Clause
This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.
each state retained “their sovereignty, freedom, and independence and every power jurisdiction and right which is not expressly delegated to the United States in Congress assembled.
Virginia & Kentucky
drafted by James
Madison and Thomas Jefferson
Uncle Tom's Cabin
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Jefferson, Kentucky Resolution:
"Resolved, that the several States composing the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their general government; but that by compact under the style and title of a Constitution for the United States and of amendments thereto, they constituted a general government for special purposes, delegated to that government certain definite powers, reserving each State to itself, the residuary mass of right to their own self-government; and that whensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force: That to this compact each State acceded as a State, and is an integral party, its co-States forming, as to itself, the other party....each party has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress."
A protective tariff or tax on imported goods designed to protect emerging northern industries. The tariff at 50 percent is the highest in US tariff history.
"And so, also, in the division of the sovereign authority between the General and State Governments, by leaving to the States an efficient power to protect, by a veto, the minor against the major interests of the community, the framers of the Constitution acted in strict conformity with the principle which invariably prevails throughout the whole system, where separate interests exist. "
“The Constitution has formed the States into a community only to the extent of their common interests, and drawing the line of separation with consummate skill.”
We are here to administer a Constitution emanating immediately from the people, and trusted by them to our administration. It is not the creature of the State governments. …
The very chief end, the main design, for which the whole Constitution was framed and adopted, was to establish a government that should not be obliged to act through State agency, or depend on State opinion or State discretion. The people has had quite enough of that kind of government under the Confederation. ...
Liberty and Union, now and for ever, one and inseparable.”
"Reply to Hayne"
Ours is a Federal Government--a Government in which not individuals, but States as distinct sovereign communities, are the constituents. To them, as members of the Federal Union, the territories belong; and they are hence declared to be territories belonging to the United States. The States, then, are the joint owners.
This Prezi is designed as a study guide to help students understand the complexity of the causes leading up to the Civil War in a non-linear way. The guide may be used by following the embedded pathway or, more usefully, by dancing among the various boxes using the home icon to reorient yourself as needed. This guide will not replace the need for further reading of the documents and sources included, a list of which is included on the last slide.
S.C. Act of
S.C. declared the tariff of 1828 & 1832 unconstitutional and refused to abide by them claming their sovereign right to nullify federal laws which were inimicable to the interests of the state.
"I consider, then, the power to annul a law of the United States, assumed by one State, incompatible with the existence of the Union, contradicted expressly by the letter of the Constitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent with every principle on which It was founded, and destructive of the great object for which it was formed." Jackson
The Library of Congress has the text to a number of critical documents of the period http://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/ourdocs/NationalExpanHome.html
Wikipedia as an excellent site on expansion that includes terrific maps: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Territorial_evolution_of_the_United_States
The single best book on the coming of the war is James McPherson's Battle Cry of Freedom, http://amzn.to/smhC0n
For a great essay on John Brown, see Sean Wilentz, “Homegrown Terrorist” at http://www.powells.com/review/2005_10_27.html
Evan Carton, Patriotic Treason and Tony Horwitz, Midnight Rising are two good recent monographs on Brown
For Lincoln, the list of books is endless, but two good ones are David Donald, Lincoln, and Doris Kearns Goodwin, Team of Rivals
map courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:ElectoralCollege1860.svg
Supreme Court ruled Pennsylvania's personal liberty law unconstitutional as it violated federal fugitive slave laws.
"I wish to speak to day not as a Massachusetts man, nor as a northern man, but as an American, and a member of the Senate of the United States. I speak today for the preservation of the union." Daniel Webster
"Whatever the ambiguities and ironies of the Compromise, it did avert a grave crisis in 1850 or at least postponed it." Historian James McPherson on the Compromise of 1850
Ordinance of 1787
prohibits slavery from old Northwest
Annexation of Texas by the US
Treaty of Guadalupe
Mexico cedes South West
to the US
Popular Sovereignty to determine slavery in the Mexican Cession
kansas Nebraska Act
Potential of Slavery in the Louisiana Purchase Territory
Dred Scott Decision rules Missouri Compromise Unconstitutional
No slavery in the Mexican Cession Territories
Secession belongs to a different class of remedies. It is to be justified upon the basis that the States are sovereign. There was a time when none denied it. I hope the time may come again, when a better comprehension of the theory of our Government, and the inalienable rights of the people of the States, will prevent any one from denying that each State is a sovereign, and thus may reclaim the grants which it has made to any agent whomsoever." Jefferson Davis, 1861
“A majority, held in restraint by constitutional checks, and limitations, and always changing easily, with deliberate changes of popular opinions and sentiments, is the only true sovereign of a free people. Whoever rejects it, does, of necessity, fly to anarchy or to despotism. Unanimity is impossible: the rule of a minority, as a permanent arrangement, is wholly inadmissable; so that, rejecting the majority principle, anarchy, or despotism in some form is all that is left.”
Lincoln's Address to Congress
Jefferson Davis' Farewell to the Senate
We hold that the Government thus established is subject to the two great principles asserted in the Declaration of Independence; and we hold further, that the mode of its formation subjects it to a third fundamental principle, namely: the law of compact. We maintain that in every compact between two or more parties, the obligation is mutual; that the failure of one of the contracting parties to perform a material part of the agreement, entirely releases the obligation of the other; and that where no arbiter is provided, each party is remitted to his own judgment to determine the fact of failure, with all its consequences.
“I, John Brown, am now quite certain that the crimes of this guilty land will never be purged away but with blood.”
"John Brown was not a harbinger of idealism and justice, but a purveyor of curdled and finally destructive idealism. This is what Abraham Lincoln understood. John Brown deserves to live in American history not as a hero, but as a temptation -- and as a warning about the damage wrought by righteous American terrorists, not just to their victims but also to their causes." Sean Wilentz, historian.
Escaped slave and
Antislavery activist and editor of the Liberator
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Formed in 1854 in Wisconsin as a collection of antislavery groups out of the collapse of the second party system. Whigs, Freesoilers, anti-Nebraska Democrats, and others came together to form the new party. From the very beginning, support for the party came overwhelmingly from the North. The Republicans ran their first presidential candidate in 1856. John C. Fremont did very well winning 33 percent of the popular vote although losing to Democrat James Buchanon.
How do we move from secession to war?
Articles of Confederation and perpetual Union between the states of New Hampshire, Massachusetts-bay Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.