The Union in Peril As slavery becomes the dominant issue in U.S. politics, the face of the country itself will change…
The Divisive Politics of Slavery Section 1
Differences Between North and South • North is industrialized • Railroads carry manufactured goods and settlers west, raw materials east • Immigrants fear expansion of slavery • Slaves might compete with non-slave labor • Could reduce status of white workers
Differences Between North and South • Southern economy relied on cash crops • Enslaved African Americans meet most labor needs • Whites fear restriction of slavery will change society & economy • In 3 states, blacks are majority; in 2, they make up ½ of population
Slavery in the Territories • Wilmot Proviso declared that there would be no slavery interritory acquired from Mexico • North: slave territory adds slave states; no jobs for free workers • South: slaves are property under Constitution, individuals moving West should be able to bring; fear more free states
The Debate Moves to the Senate • Some Southerners threaten secessionif the Wilmot Proviso isn’t overturned • Henry Clay offers Compromise of 1850 to settle disputes over slavery
The Compromise of 1850 • California would be a free state • Popular sovereignty: New Mexico and Utah would decide whether slavery would be legal • Abolish slave trade in Washington D.C. • Owning slaves legal in Washington, D.C. • Pay Texas $10 million to give up claims to eastern New Mexico • Fugitive Slave Act ordered all citizens to assist in the return of enslaved people who had escaped from their owners
Clay gives a speech begging the North and South to compromise and save the Union “I have, Senators, believed from the first that.. The subject of slavery would, if not prevented by some timely and effective measure, end in disunion [of the United States]… It has reached a point when it can no longer be disguised or denied that the Union is in danger. You have thus had forced upon you the greatest and gravest question that can ever come under your consideration: How can the Union be preserved.”
Debates over the Compromise • Clay’s speech starts one of greatest debates in U.S. history • Senate rejects the Compromise and Clay leaves Washington! • Stephen A. Douglas eventually reintroduces the resolutions individually • Compromise of 1859
Protest, Resistance, and Violence Section 2
Fugitive Slaves The Fugitive Slave Act • Alleged fugitives denied jury trial; right to testify on own behalf • Federal commissioners paid more for returning than freeing accused • People helping a fugitive are fined, imprisoned, or both Northern Response • Many still send fugitives to Canada • Personal Liberty Laws forbid prison for fugitives, grant jury trials
The Underground Railroad • Underground Railroad – secret network of to help slaves escape • Fugitives go on foot at night, often no food, avoiding armed patrols • Some stayed in North; others go to Canada Harriet Tubman escapes from slavery and becomes a conductor on 19 trips
Uncle Tom’s Cabin • 1852: Abolitionist Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin stirs protest • Uncle Tom’s Cabin shows slavery as moral problem, not just political • Despised by Southerners
Uncle Tom’s Cabin Except – Questions Within the group about the be auctioned off, what different categories or classes does Stowe describe? Stowe depicts St. Clare as being a wonderful Master to his slaves – what differences are there between St. Clare and the men who are at the auction in the excerpt? What type of life will St. Clare’s former slaves be facing? Stowe writes her book to elicit an emotional reaction from her readers to the practice of slavery – do you think she is successful? Why or why not?
The Kansas-Nebraska Act • Created by Stephen A. Douglas • Would override the Missouri Compromise • Popular sovereignty is best way to organize new states • Doesn’t think slavery is feasible in Midwest, but wants Southern support (he wants to run for President) • 1854: Kansas-Nebraska Act allows popular sovereignty in regards to slavery
“Bleeding Kansas” The Race for Kansas • Northerners and Southern settlers pour into Kansas Territory • 1855:Kansas holds elections for territorial legislature • Proslavery “border ruffians” vote illegally, win fraudulent majority • Proslavery government in Lecompton • Antislavery government in Topeka • Territory called Bleeding Kansas for incidents that kill some 200
Violence in the Senate • Senator Charles Sumner verbally attacks colleaguesover the issue of slavery (he is against) • Congressman Preston S. Brooks beats Sumner for insults to uncle • Southerners applaud Brooks; Northerners condemn him
The Birth of the Republican Party Section 3
New Political Parties Emerge Slavery Divides the Whigs • 1852: Northern, Southern Whigs split over slavery • Democrat Franklin Pierce is elected president • Whig Party splinters after Kansas-Nebraska Act Nativism • Nativism is the belief in favoring native-born Americans over immigrants • 1854: Nativists form Know-Nothing Party • Middle-class Protestants afraid of Catholicism; split over slavery
New Political Parties Emerge Forerunner of the Republican Party • Liberty Party pursues abolition through laws The Free-Soilers • Oppose slavery in territories • Support restrictions on blacks • Object to slavery’s impact on white wage-based labor force • Convinced of conspiracy to spread slavery throughout U.S.
New Political Parties Emerge Republican Party • 1854: unhappy Whigs, Democrats, Free-Soilers form Republican Party • Oppose slavery in territories; other opinions varied • Main competition is Know-Nothing Party The 1856 Election • Democrat James Buchanan is elected and secession is averted
Make sure you have a pen and paper … Politics are about to get complicated!!
Anti-Federalists Federalists Jeffersonian-Republicans (Democratic-Republicans) Federalists Democrats (Andrew Jackson) National Republicans (John Quincy Adams) Democrats Whigs New Third Party Groups Free-Soil Party (1848) Republican Party Liberty Party (1844) Know-Nothing Party (1854) (eventually)
Slavery and Secession Section 4
The Dred Scott Decision • 1857: Dred Scott, a slave who had lived in free areas after his master moved, sues for freedom • Decision: • slaves do not have rights of citizens • no claim to freedom, suit begun in slave state • Congress cannot forbid slavery in territories
Kansas Seeks Statehood The Lecompton Constitution • Proslavery Kansas government writes a constitution, seeking statehood • Vote put before the people of Kansas, but they vote down constitution • Stephen Douglas gets second vote put before the people; voters reject it again Why do you think the voters in Kansas shoot down their own constitution??
The Lincoln-Douglas Debates • 1858: Republican Abraham Lincoln runs for Douglas’s Senate seat • Challenges Douglas to seven debates • Douglas wins the seat but his ideas worsen the split between Democrats • Lincoln’s attacks on the “vast moral evil” of slavery draws national attention
Passions Ignite Harpers Ferry • 1859: John Brown plans slave uprising, needs weapons • Leads men to federal arsenal in Harpers Ferry • U.S. Marines put down rebellion, capture Brown John Brown’s Hanging • Dec 1859: Brown hanged for high treason • Many Northerners admire Brown; Southerners fear future uprisings
Lincoln Elected President Overflowing crowds attend the Republican Presidential Convention in Chicago • Lincoln wins nomination- seen as more moderate than others • Tells South he will not meddle with slaves, but the South still feels threatened The Election of 1860 • Democrats split over slavery • Lincoln wins with less than half of popular vote • gets no Southern electoral votes
Southern Secession • South Carolina first state to secede, followed by Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas • want complete independence from federal control • fear end to their way of life • want to preserve slave labor system • Feb. 1861: Confederate States of America established • Permits slavery, recognizes state sovereignty • Mass resignations from the federal government • Former senator Jefferson Davis unanimously elected president