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Politics of Slavery

Explore the economic, social, and political events from the Mexican War to the outbreak of the Civil War, as the North and South develop differently due to differences in immigration, slavery, and territorial disputes. Learn about the Compromise of 1850, Fugitive Slave Act, Underground Railroad, and the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

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Politics of Slavery

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  1. Politics of Slavery Chapter 10 Section 1 Objective 3.01

  2. Objective 3.01 • Trace the economic, social, and political events from the Mexican War to the outbreak of the Civil War.

  3. North and South Develop differently

  4. North • Immigrants oppose slavery • Feared competition between free labor and slave labor • Threatened to reduce status of white workers who could not compete with slaves

  5. South • Fewer immigrants • Slaves were the majority in SC, LA, and MS

  6. Slavery in the Territories • Wilmot Proviso – would have closed Mexican Cession lands to slavery forever • Passed in House, Defeated in Senate – why? • Southerners saw slaves as property – Constitutional right

  7. A. Popular Sovereignty Panacea • Allow people in individual territories to make decisions about slavery • Didn’t advocate all-out ban as free-soilers did • In line with democratic traditions • *Not good enough for abolitionists- slavery could spread

  8. Prigg v. Pennsylvania 1842 – MD/PA court overturned conviction of slave catcher Fugitive Slave Law of 1793 upheld What else was decided?

  9. B. Political Triumph for General Taylor • Election of 1848 • Whigs- General Zachary Taylor • Democrats- Lewis Cass • Free-Soil Party • Against slavery b/c of competition w/ white jobs • Taylor won- war hero who took no stance on slavery

  10. C. Californy Gold 1848- Gold discovered in CA Huge population increase Lawlessness 1849- asked for statehood- free state

  11. California • Southerners assumed it would be a slave state. Why? • California applies for admission as a free state. Sets off debate.

  12. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1849) “If a man is going to California, he announces it with some hesitation; because it is a confession that he has failed at home.”

  13. Sectionalism • Many issues relating to sectionalism faced the 31st Congress (1849) • California • Texas/NM • Slavery in DC • Fugitive Slave Act • Secession?

  14. Henry Clay • The Great Compromiser worked to pass a compromise in the Senate • The Compromise of 1850

  15. Compromise of 1850 • California admitted as a free state • Utah and New Mexico decide territories decide about slavery – popular sovereignty – right of the people to decide • Texas-NM boundary dispute settled; Texas paid $10 million • Sale of slaves banned in D.C. Slavery may continue there • Stronger Fugitive Slave Act

  16. Daniel Webster assists • Webster helped Clay’s appeal for nat’l unity • 7th of March Speech • Angered home state (MA) • Support of Fugitive Slave Act?

  17. Senate rejects Compromise • Clay leaves Washington • Stephen Douglas of Illinois pushes Compromise through • He broke it up and passed the resolutions one by one

  18. Millard Fillmore • Gen. Zachary Taylor dies (President) • Millard Fillmore becomes President and supports the Compromise

  19. Fugitive Slave Act • Many surprised by harsh terms • Fugitives not entitled to a jury • Fed. commissioners received $10 for returning a runaway and $5 for freeing him or her

  20. Personal Liberty Laws • Passed by Northern states – forbade imprisonment of runaway slaves and guaranteed jury trials • Enraged Southerners

  21. Underground Railroad • Secret network that helped slaves escape • Most famous conductor was Harriet Tubman

  22. Harriet Tubman • Most famous conductor of Underground Railroad • Suffered brain damage (hit by overseer) as a young slave • Eventually ran away • Made 19 trips back to the South to help 300 slaves escape

  23. Uncle Tom’s Cabin • Published 1852 • Written by Harriet Beecher Stowe • Fictional novel about life under slavery • Inflamed passions

  24. Uncle Tom’s Cabin (continued) • Northern abolitionists increased protests • Southerners became determined to defend slavery

  25. Slavery kept tightly controlled in South • Slave codes – pre-Civil War laws in South – regulated would a slave could and couldn’t do • Ex. – illegal to teach a slave to read

  26. Nebraska and Kansas • Douglas pushes to organize territory west of Iowa and Missouri in 1854 • 2 reasons: • Chicago – San Francisco RR • Believed people wanted western lands incorporated into the Union

  27. Popular Sovereignty • Douglas pushes for popular sovereignty in Nebraska and Kansas territories • People decide (about slavery) • This territory was north of the 36’30 line from the Missouri Compromise

  28. Prairie slavery?

  29. Kansas – Nebraska Act • Jan. 1854 – Douglas introduces bill into Congress • Divides territory into Nebraska (north) and Kansas (south) • Established popular sovereignty in both territories (repealed Missouri Compromise) • Bill strongly supported by Southerners • Passes with the help of…

  30. Franklin Pierce • Democrat • Elected President in 1852

  31. Violence Erupts • Pro-slavery and Anti-slavery settlers rush to settle Kansas and set up their own governments

  32. B. The North-South Contest for Kansas • Battle for the state • Abolitionists, free-soilers • New England Emigrant Aid Company • Beecher’s Bibles • Southerners- not a good idea to bring slaves • 2 in KS, 15 in NB

  33. “Border Ruffians” • Pro-slavery advocates from Missouri illegally voted in a Pro-slavery gov’t • Lecompton Constitution • Abolitionists organized a rival gov’t in Topeka in 1855

  34. “Sack of Lawrence” • Antislavery settlers founded Lawrence, KS • 1856 - Posse of 800 armed men burned down the town

  35. “Pottawatomie Massacre” • Ardent abolitionist John Brown heard (mistakenly) that 5 men had been killed at Lawrence • He and his followers killed 5 men in pro-slavery settlement at Pottawatomie Creek

  36. “Bleeding Kansas” • “waving the bloody shirt”

  37. Violence in the Senate • Preston Brooks (SC) canes Charles Sumner (Mass) • May 22, 1856

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