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By The 1850's The Constitution Became A Source Of Sectional Discord, Ultimately Contributing To The Failure Of The Union. This Tries To Disprove This Statement. *Ap Us Dbq From 1987

1470 words - 6 pages

In the mid-1800's, many events occurred that increased sectional tension between the Northern and Southern states of the Union. These tensions ultimately resulted in the outbreak of civil war. One thing in particular that is considered to be a source of sectional discord is the U.S. Constitution. However the Constitution itself was not a source of sectional tension that caused the failure of the Union. The failure erupted generally from the issue of slavery. combination of the people in general and the differences in economic styles that lead to the downfall. Poor political decisions such as the Kansas Nebraska Act, lead to bad decisions which worsened the tensions of the union. The economic differences ultimately lead to the Civil War because it was the driving force that caused the differences between the North and The South.The economics of the northern and southern United States in the mid 1800's were complete opposites of each other. The North was primarily industrialistic, relying on the manufacturing of goods, at the time generally cotton textiles, as it's economic driving force. This was due primarily to the fact that The North had poor growing conditions including infertile soil. The South on the other hand had a warm climate, and fertile soil. This resulted in agriculture and generally the growing of cotton to be the South's economic driving force. The farming economy of the South resulted in slavery being used as an efficient source of labor. The issue of slavery was the main and basic driving force of the sectional tensions that drove the Union apart. The Constitution had very little effect or influence on the development of the Nation's economy. Since slavery was introduced into the South because of it's economic style, logically the Constitution cannot be blamed as a cause of slavery or the sectional differences that resulted because of slavery. In fact the Panic of 1857 helped to reveal the differences in economies and helped further sectional tensions between the North and the South. The panic was inpart caused by falling wheat prices and failure of land speculation. The North was far more affected by this economic downfall then the South was. This showed the differences in the economies and gave the South bragging rights that "King Cotton" was superior over the North's industrialistic nature. The North however, blamed the low tariff pushed through Congress by The South as the cause. This event was a result of economic difference which are no way related to The Constitution.Another main cause of the Civil War was the political leaders and acts put into effect during this era, and in general the peoples' of the North and the South. The slavery issue that had resulted from the different economies of the North and South caused a gap in the Nation. This gap grew wider and deeper, leading to deepening sectionalism, and the eventual outbreak of war. This gap however was not caused by the Constitution. The Constitution sets the basic...

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