I believe that the Civil War began with the debate over the future of slavery. That very issue led to secession, and secession caused a war where the Northern states fought for the ground of the Union, and the South for their independence as a new confederation of states under its own constitution. It seems to me that any disagreement leads to some form of resentment. We tend to not like what we don’t understand, and it was hard for the North to understand why the Southern states were itching for freedom from them. It seems from a broader point of view that the North has gone through so much just for the Southern states of America to exist.
Despite this, had it not been for slavery, there would have been no initial divide between North and South which created economic disparity and led to Southern paranoia over Northern expansionism which led to war, thus the most important factor. The most important factor for the outbreak of the American Civil War was slavery because it caused the initial divides between the North and South. The first divisions were as the USA was undergoing Western Expansion with the issue over whether the new states, such as California and New Mexico should be brought in as Slave states or Free states. The failure to reach a decision over whether new states would be Slave states or Free states meant there was inevitably a conflict that can be seen through to the tensions in Kansas in 1857. The fact that a minor civil war occurred simply over the issue of slavery clearly depicts that slavery was an essential factor in the outbreak of the Civil War.
What Lead to the Civil War. From the beginning of the United States, war was inevitable between the North and the South, over the issues of slavery. Ever since Eli Whitney’s invention of the cotton gins in 1790, the South has been on a completely different economic path from the North. In the 1850’s political developments, the Fugitive slave act, the Dread Scott decision, and the John Brown raid, eventually all drove the regions further and further apart. Even though the North and South tried to reconcile their differences on the issue of slavery by implementing compromises in the 1820’s and 1850’s, both attempts failed, leading up to the Civil War.
Years of frustration is what caused the eventual succession. Since the American Revolution, the topic of slavery was present in the minds of important men in both northern and southern states. The institution of slavery was allowed to continue in the United States, but it was when the Union started to expand that much of the frustration began. The government had passed regulations banning the spread of slavery into these new territories, and many southern states were outraged to the point where South Carolina threatened to succeed from the Union in 1821. Southern states believed that their way of life was being infringed, meaning that slavery was an important institution for their mainly agricultural based economy.
After that, Congress held the power to influence the American macrocosm of its society but internal shifting of power created made Congress into a veritable seesaw. The Congress' Reconstruction efforts failed because of the political shifts in power that caused the issues of remerging to jump one way or another, hate crimes and groups that were allowed to fester, and the social willingness to accept and encourage segregation. In the heated Congressional meets of the Reconstruction, southern Democrats and northern Republicans were at a battle with one another, with each gaining ground and then falling back. The Radical Republicans, as they came to be known, were the majority party rule before the Amnesty Acts of 1872 and were pro-war, pro-abolitionist and pro-freedmen’s rights. Such things passed under them were the Freedmen’s Bureau and the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 both of which were ultimately vetoed by President Johnson, a pro-slavery racist and the new member of the Republican hit list.
The two causes of the civil war were slavery and Abraham Lincoln. Slavery was very big in the South because it helped them with their economy, but the North was completely against slavery. The North and South could not compromise with their issues, and the Election of Abraham Lincoln turned everything sour and led to the civil war. Although, the war was very deadly, at the end, the North side managed to get what they always wanted, this was to abolish
But as time passed, people started to believe that slavery was unconstitutional. Debates were fought, muskets snapped, and cannons roared in order to secure the future of our country. After a war that separated the country for the first time in her short history, slavery was abolished; but laws and manuscript can only do so much. For the generations that were imprinted with this natural racism, it would take an equal amount of explanation and understanding to have any hope of a change in their mindset. Langston Hughes’s poem depicts this as the “Negro bearing slavery’s scars”, stating that no matter how much time has or will pass, the social and mental damage has already been done (20).
With the proposal of the Wilmot Proviso, the precarious balance of free-to-slave states was again being threatened with disruption. The proposal failed, but not before succeeding in creating enough of a stir to contribute to the necessitating of the Compromise of 1850. In this new compromise, which is considered a contributing factor to the delaying of the start of civil war, several new slave policies were enacted. Included in these were the controversial Fugitive Slave Act and the slave trade being abolished in the District of Columbia. While temporarily pacifying a significant number of both Northern and Southerners, the 1850 Compromise also served to widen the ideological gap between
Not all Southerners were in favor of slavery. Many wanted to abolish the practice, including many whites. Hinton Helper was a white author from the south and he wrote the book The Impending Crisis of the South speaking out against slavery. Helper believed that slavery was negatively impacting southern economy. In addition, Helper argued the South’s wealth, growth and culture were being disrupted by the dependence upon slaves.
Examples included voting rights and citizenship, and the founders passed this to the states to decide. According to Bowles, 2011, American History 1865 to present End of Isolation, though slavery was the underlying reason for the war, another central debate was the rights of states versus the powers of the federal government. While Republicans were strongly in favor of a stronger federal government, Johnson opposed this direction and wanted states to have more power, includ¬ing the southern states. Which basically meant, more blacks in the government ; Johnson disapproved. As Johnson and Congress wres¬tled with these issues, their clash came to somewhat of a head with a disagreement over the Freedman’s Bureau.