Slavery Before The Civil War Essay

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Why were southerners eager to bring territories such as New Mexico, Texas, and California—where very little cotton was grown—into the Union as slave states?

There were many reasons completely unrelated to cotton.

Many students believe that the Republican Party, created in 1855, focused on slavery in the 1860 campaign, but their key issues centered on political corruption of the Buchanan Administration.

The Republican platform called for containment, not the end of slavery.

In 1860, there were more farms in the North than in the South, although Southern states, especially in the Cotton Belt, had the majority of large farms (1,000 acres or more).

Slavery Before The Civil War Essay Writing An Opinion Paper

Census data on farms and cities, however, reveals that while cities grew rapidly in the North between 18, they did not become leading population centers until 1920, 60 years after the Civil War began. had eight cities with more than 150,000 residents in 1860 and three of them—St.They gloat over the North's shipping yards and are surprised to learn of the busy shipping industry based in cities such as Richmond, Charleston, and New Orleans. Sugar and tobacco became the most profitable to meet European demands for crops that did not grow in the colder European climate.Their jaws drop when I talk about the thousands of slaves in the South who worked in busy cities, not on quiet plantations. Virginia planters made a fortune growing tobacco, making tobacco the first King. By 1860, however, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana replaced Georgia and South Carolina as leading growers of cotton (see Primary Source Cotton and Slaves Data [1860]).At the same time, the warmer Southern states continued to rely on slaves for their farming economy and cotton production.Southerners made huge profits from cotton and slaves and fought a war to maintain them.The agricultural economy was certainly one cause of the Civil War, but not the only one.Wars are never simple and neither are their causes.Richmond, VA, had mills and factories as early as 1800. When I ask college students to talk about the causes of the war, many tell the story of Eli Whitney and the cotton gin.The 1860 census shows the fairly even spread of manufacturing across the states, with only New York and Pennsylvania recording 17,000 or more manufacturing establishments (see Primary Source Farms Census Data [1860], List of Urban Areas [1860], and Manufacturing Census Date [1860]). They remind me that there were no factories in the South prior to 1860 and are astonished when I tell them that factories flourished in the South as early as John Adams's Presidency. They began to arrive in the early 1600s to work on farms that grew a number of different crops.Why were so many prominent southerners, such as George Washington, George Wythe, and Thomas Jefferson, opposed, at least in theory, to the institution?Slavery, too, was seen as a moral evil by the hundreds of thousands of northern abolitionists who published newspapers and marched in the streets of small towns and large cities carrying their colorful banners.


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