The Secession Of The Southern States In 1860 And 1861

867 words - 3 pages

Leading up to Civil War many events transpired that created a disconnect between Americans within the United States. The South believed that slave labor boosted the profitability and sustainability of their economy by allowing for cheap labor that lasted for a long time, while the slaves could also reproduce, creating more cheap labor to come. The North, however, disagreed with the South; they did not want slaves to take American jobs and they also promoted American labor. The North and South each tried to sway the other’s position on the topic of slave labor, but neither would budge. As time passed, certain events lead to the decline of slavery. The south recognized this and threatened to secede from the Union, adding to the disconnect between the two. Secession is defined as: to break away from; but for the South it was leverage to either help them attain what they desired or they could leave the union. Admitting free states, disallowing slavery to expand, and President Lincoln’s election were significant factors that lead to the secession of the southern states in 1860 and 1861.
The union faced its first obstacle when the decision to admit states arose. Maine, Missouri and new territories recently gained, known as the Louisiana Territory, each applied for admission into the Union. At the time the south lead the senate in votes by a slim margin; moreover, Maine was admitted as a free-state, while Missouri was admitted as a slave-state. It was also decided that none of the Louisiana Territory would permit slave labor. The Missouri Compromise of 1820 triggered a negative reaction from both sides: the abolitionists despised the expansion of slavery in Missouri, while supporters of slavery desired more land than Missouri that allowed slave labor, especially for all the slave-free land they gave up. “... we deny the authority of Congress, of a territorial legislature, or of any individuals, to give legal existence to slavery in any territory of the United States” (Document 1). This quote from the Republican Platform shows how they believed in letting slavery die out by preventing it from expanding. Furthermore, the South disagreed with this belief and recognized it in a timely manner, and realizing the North’s plan, they decided to act. However, future compromises such as the Compromise of 1850, were in favor of abolitionists. All these admissions of free states with decreasing amounts of slave states being admitted, the South grew angry and tired of the North trying to destroy slave labor.
Over time the North’s actions and intentions led to the slow, but sure, decline of slave...

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