Lecture 20 - Sunny Hills High School

January 6, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: History, US History, The Civil War And Reconstruction (1850-1880), Civil War
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Drifting Towards Disunion 1854-1860

Incendiary Literature Harriet Beecher Stowe & Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852) Portrayed the evils of slavery (physical abuse/splitting of families) Helped start the war & helped win it

Uncle Tom’s Cabin 1852  Sold 300,000 copies in the first year.  2 million in a decade!

Harriet Beecher Stowe “So you’re the little woman who wrote the book that made this great war.” - A. Lincoln (1862)

Hinton H. Helper (1857) The Impending Crisis of the South Tried to prove that nonslaveholding southerners suffered the most from slavery

“Bleeding Kansas” Southerners believed that agreement had been reached that Kansas would be slave & Nebraska would be free

Kansas-Nebraska Act, 1854

New England Emigrant Aid Company Northern abolitionists & free-soilers fought this assumption by sending pioneers westward 2000 settlers many armed with “Beecher’s Bibles” the new Sharps rifle

1855: Pro-Slavery “border ruffians” crossed west from Missouri into Kansas on election day to elect the new government Free-soilers elected their own government at Topeka

May 21, 1856: Pro-slavery raiders invaded the free soil town of Lawrence & burned part of the town border-ruffians

May 24, 1856: Pottawatomie Creek John Brown & his followers hack 5 proslavers to death with swords

John Brown: Madman, Hero or Martyr?

Mural in the Kansas Capitol building by John Steuart Curry (20c)

“Bully” Brooks (1856) Senator Charles Sumner makes a speech in the Senate denouncing southern slavery & insulting Senator Butler of South Carolina

Congressman Preston Brooks of SC attacks & beats Sumner on the floor of the Senate - whips him with a cane Incident underscored the inflamed passions arising from the issue of slavery & free-soil

“The Crime Against Kansas”

Senator Charles Sumner (R-MA)

Congressman Preston Brooks (D-SC)

Lecompton Constitution (1857) Created by Pro-Slavery forces Election forced voters to choose between the constitution with slavery or without slavery - slaves in the state would be protected no matter what

Free-soilers boycotted the election & constitution passes with slavery President Buchanan backs the Lecompton Constitution Douglas is against it Entire constitution is submitted to a vote - freesoilers defeat it

Kansas does not gain statehood until 1861 Buchanan & Douglas forces split the Democratic Party along sectional lines


Assess the moral arguments and political actions of those opposed to the spread of slavery in the context of TWO of the following: Missouri Compromise Mexican War Compromise of 1850 Kansas-Nebraska Act

Election of 1856 Democrats nominate James Buchanan over Douglas & Pierce Both have too much political baggage from the Kansas-Nebraska Act

Republicans nominate John C. Fremont, “The Pathfinder” over “Higher Law” Seward

Republicans for free-soil Democrats for popular sovereignty American Party (“Knownothings”) nominated exPresident Fillmore Also endorsed by few remaining Whigs

1856 Presidential Election

James Buchanan Democrat

John C. Frémont Republican

Millard Fillmore Whig

Southerners threatened that a Republican victory would be a declaration of war Buchanan won the electoral vote without gaining a majority of the popular vote

1856 Election Results

Republican loss was a gain for the North Secession in 1856 would have been easier for the South

The Dred Scott Decision Dred Scott, having lived in the North for 5 years, sued for his freedom

Chief Justice Roger B. Taney ruled that Scott was a black slave & not a citizen, therefore could not sue

Pro-southern majority went further ruling that slaves, as property, could be taken into any territory & held in slavery there

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The Amendment denies Congress the power to deprive citizens of their property without due process

The Missouri Compromise, repealed by the Kansas-Nebraska Act, was now ruled unconstitutional Northern free-soilers called the ruling merely an “opinion” & refused to abide by it

Southerners considered the unlikelihood of maintaining the bonds of Union with states that would not abide by rulings of the Supreme Court

The Panic of 1857 Causes: Inflation caused by gold Overproduction of grain caused by the Crimean War Over speculation in land & railroads

Results: Northwestern grain growers hit the hardest High cotton prices kept the South safe from recession Power of the southern economy reinforced southern ideas that cotton was “king”

Increased westerners’ demands for free land Demand for higher tariff rates

Homestead Act Northerners increased demands for laws giving away government land as 160 acre farms Easterners opposed in fear that free land would drain off the labor force

South opposed it because 160 acres was too small for slave farms Buchanan would veto a homestead bill in 1860

The Illinois Rail Splitter Illinois Senate election of 1858 pit Republican Abraham Lincoln against Democrat Stephen Douglas

Lincoln… born in a log cabin self-educated married Mary Todd became a trial lawyer served one term in Congress (1847-49: “Spotty” Lincoln)

“A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free.” - Lincoln’s nomination speech

Lincoln challenged Douglas to a series of debates at various locations from August to October 1858

The Lincoln-Douglas Debates, 1858 (Illinois Senate)

At Freeport, Lincoln challenged Douglas to a dilemma: “If the people of a territory voted against slavery who would prevail --the courts or the people?”

The Freeport Doctrine Douglas answered that court or no court, the people would ultimately decide the fate of slavery in the territories

Douglas defeated Lincoln - but because of the way Senators were elected Lincoln actually carried more popular vote

Douglas’s victory, in defiance of the Dred Scott decision, further split him from southern Democrats

John Brown & Harper’s Ferry John Brown began developing a plan to invade the South, start a slave uprising, & establish a black free state


October 1859 - Brown & 20 followers seized the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry in Western Virginia


Harper’s Ferry



Colonel Robert E. Lee & the U.S. Marines captured Brown & 4 survivors Brown is tried for treason & hanged His death note warned that slavery would be purged only by “much bloodshed”

The South saw in Brown their worse fears - that the North was dominated by “Brown-loving” Republicans seeking to steal their property South begins organizing militias for defense

“John Brown’s body lies a mold’ring in the grave…”

John Brown's zeal for the cause of freedom was infinitely superior to mine. Mine was the taper light; his was the burning sun. I could live for the slave. John Brown could die for him. -- Frederick Douglass

The Fateful Election of 1860 Democrats meet in Charleston, SC Southern anti-Douglas delegates walk out Douglas fails to get 2/3rds vote needed for nomination

Democrats meet again in Baltimore Southerners again walk but Douglas gets nomination

Democratic platform is for popular sovereignty & enforcement of the Fugitive Slave laws

Southern Democrats meet & nominate John C. Breckinridge of Kentucky Platform favored extension of slavery & the annexation of Cuba

Former Whigs & “Know Nothings” form the Constitutional Union Party Nominate John Bell of Tennessee “The Union, the Constitution, and the enforcement of Laws”

Republicans meet in Chicago William Seward had too much baggage Lincoln gets the nomination on the 3rd ballot

Republican platform included: non-extension of slavery protective tariff no abridgment of immigrants rights northern transcontinental railroad internal improvements free homesteads

Abraham Lincoln Republican

1860 Presidential Election

Stephen A. Douglas Northern Democrat

John Bell Constitutional Union

John C. Breckinridge Southern Democrat

1860 Election: A Nation Coming Apart?!

Southern secessionists warned that the South would secede if Lincoln were elected Lincoln won the electoral vote by a bare plurality of the popular vote

South Carolina secessionists rejoiced at Lincoln’s victory - they now had their excuse

Southern voting did not show a strong sentiment toward disunion South still had the votes to protect slavery from a constitutional amendment

1860 Election Results

Secession 4 days after the election South Carolina votes to hold a special convention to debate secession

Failure of Compromise December 18, 1860: John J. Crittenden of Kentucky proposed amendments to appease the South: Extend the Missouri Compromise line to the Pacific Popular sovereignty for future states

President-elect Lincoln flatly rejected the Crittenden Amendments December 20, 1860: South Carolina votes to secede from the Union

Secession! SC Dec. 20, 1860

Reasons for Secession Loss of political balance Republican party Free-soil, abolitionism (J.B.) Thought they’d be unopposed End to dependence on North Moral high ground Compact theory John Locke & DOI

Members of the Buchanan cabinet begin to quit in protest over his inaction Buchanan held that the southern states had no right to secede, but that he had no right to make them stay by force

Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor is held by Major Robert Anderson SC formally calls for the removal of all federal forces from their territory

Lincoln is unable & unwilling to do anything in this lame-duck period

Fort Sumter

January 1861: Miss, Fla, Ala, GA, & LA meet in Montgomery, Alabama & form the Confederate States of America Jefferson Davis elected President

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