Civil War Era Paper

Civil War Era Paper

Paul Werner
Lincoln Fitch
CWES 205
Makeup essay
brief 200-word essay on the documents answering these two questions.  1) how do these documents inform our understanding of the slavery debate
 2) how would you use these documents to explain what the cause of the civil war was.

Missouri Compromise 1820
- prohibit slavery in certain territories
- territory north of 36 degrees 30 minutes north latitude – no slavery
- any slave escaping to these territories may be reclaimed

Wilmot Proviso 1846
- any land acquisitioned from the Republic of Mexico – no slavery

Fugitive Slave Acts 1850
- housing slaves constituted fine + prison sentence of 6 months
- no personal testimony of slaves in court- only thing that could be presented was proof of ownership
- judge gets bonus if siding with slave holder
- Negro writings like “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” make northerners sympathetic
- Anthony Burns – escaped from Virginia to Boston- Negro vigilantes storm Boston courthouse to free – returned to Virginia – bought back – moves to Canada – infamous in the press

Kansas-Nebraska Act 1854
- new territory may have or not have slavery based on what its people decide

Appeal Of the Independent Democrats January 19th 1854
- See past act excluding free laborers from new territories
- Made the land inhabited by masters and slaves
- Original policy of new territories was non-extension of slavery forever
- New policy makes slavery possible in all new territories
- “dearest interest of freedom and the union are in imminent peril”
- fundamental maxim of democracy – equal rights and exact justice for all men.
- Call on people to come to the rescue of the country from the domination of slavery

Charles Sumner “the crime against Kansas”
- rape of virgin territory – compelling hateful embrace of slavery
- longing for new slave state – add to the power of slavery in the national government...

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