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1987 Dbq - Free Essays

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

1477 WordsJan 18th, 20056 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…show more content…

This may have balanced the slave to non-slave state count in the union but it also basically flat out divided the nation based on slavery. Instead of solving the problem it was a temporarily solution that eventually lead to struggles between the North and the South over the introduction of future western states into the union on the issue of slavery. The passing of this compromise was solely due to the people in Congress, and the president and had nothing to do with the Constitution what so ever.

A leading example of the struggles of slavery in the western states was the struggle over slavery in Kansas. Document F depicts a political cartoon basically stating that Stephen Douglas, Franklin Pierce, and James Buchanan all attempted intentionally or unintentionally to spread slavery to the West. Stephen Douglas proposed the Kansas-Nebraska Act in which the Midwest Nebraska territory would be divided into two states Kansas and Nebraska and the issue of slavery would be determined by in state vote known as "popular sovereignty". Franklin Pierce aided with the signing of the bill. The results upon this bill was harsh fighting between pro-slavery supporters and non-slavery supporters in Kansas over this issue. It also led to the non-reelection of Pierce and the end to the Whig party, along with the introduction of the sectional Republican party, who opposed the Kansas-Nebraska Act. An attempt at forcing slavery into

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By the 1850's , the countries unity was falling apart and the North and South were quickly seperating.   Neither side could agree on the issue of slavery, which made both parts of the country split apart.   The Constitution failed to give a definitive answer on the issue of slavery, making it easy for two sides to argue.   The whole slavery issue should've been settled when the constitution was written.
When the Constitution was written, its purpose was to   unite the 13 different colonies into one nation.   A lot of the Constitution was written non-specific, meaning that different people would view its words in different ways.   According to Document B , the south seems to think that the Constitution says that slaves are property and are allowed in the territories.   The Constitution never really says anything in regards of slavery.   This confusion is what causes the country to split and to become less unified by the 1850's.
Most people in the North disagreed with what the South had to say about slaves being property.  
The North felt like popular sovereignty was the best way to decide whether or not slavery should be legal in certain territories.   As shown in Document F, the North felt like the South forced slavery down the throats of many citizens who didn't agree with it.   “Bleeding Kansas” was a result of the disagreement which was when the state of Kansas had their own little civil war.
In 1860 when Abraham Lincoln was elected president, the South felt as if the country was trying to outlaw slavery in the territories.   Lincoln himself did believe that slavery should be banned in the territories, and the South felt as if this violed their rights.   As shown in Document G, James Buchanan tried to prevent fighting by calling for a Constitutional Amendment to try to come to an agreement between the North and the South which would never fall through.   The disagreement between the North and the South went on for years.
When the new Fugitive Slave Law came out in...

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