1800s And 1860 Sectionalism Analysis

649 Words3 Pages
Between 1800 and 1860, life differed greatly between the North and the South. These differences created tension and contributed to the development of sectionalism. Sectionalism is placing of the interests of one’s own region ahead of the interests of the nation as a whole. With the country developing diversely, issues regarding the expansion of U.S economy, extension of slavery into territories, relationship between the states and the federal government were brewing under the surface for some time only to explode in Civil War in the middle of the 1800's. Economic differences during the 1800s sparked much of sectional tension. The North’s economy included large domestic market for finished goods and manufacturing while the South did not.…show more content…
Abolitionists like William Lloyd Garrison fought for the abolition of slavery claiming that it was morally wrong. Societies such as the American Anti-Slavery Society were formed to oppose slavery. According to document 2b, they believed slavery was contrary to the principles of religion, morals, and humanity. However, the Southerners, according to Eric Foner, slavery provided upper class with freedom from manual labor and gave the upper class more time to devote to arts, literature, and inventions which would make the progress of civilization possible. Some proslavery argued slavery actually benefited blacks by making them part of a prosperous and Christian civilization. Slave owners also invented the myth of happy slave. They contrasted this image to the Northern wage slave, a wage-earning immigrant or free black who worked for pennies in dark and airless…show more content…
This idea was spread across the country, that U.S. was destined to expand across the continent to the Pacific Ocean. However, the expansion of lands led the debate over rather newly gained lands should be slave states or free states. For example, the Mexican War. The Southerners supported the expansion of slavery westward and claimed that slavery was essential to progress of civilization. However, according a Massachusetts legislature, this war began over the unconstitutional annexation of Texas and it was fought to extend slavery and strengthen the idea of slave power against free states. It was inevitable the idea of slavery would be debated once a territory applies for statehood. When California, the first territory of the land gained from Mexican War, applied for statehood the controversy was evident. It eventually led to the Compromise of 1850, stated that the territories of the Mexican Cession would be open to popular sovereignty, slave trade would end in Washington D.C., and that a stronger fugitive slave law would be put into act (document five). The period of 1800 to 1860 is characterized as the time period that led to the Civil War. It was inevitable that war would eventually be the only way to resolve the debate and tension between the North and the

More about 1800s And 1860 Sectionalism Analysis

Open Document