Slavery In The South

This essay has a total of 2007 words and 7 pages.

Slavery In The South

The South, which was known as the Confederate States of America, seceded from the North,
which was also known as the Union, for many different reasons. The reason they wanted to
succeed was because there was four decades of great sectional conflict between the two.
Between the North and South there were deep economic, social, and political differences.
The South wanted to become an independent nation. There were many reasons why the South
wanted to succeed but the main reason had to do with the North's view on slavery. All of
this was basically a different interpretation of the United States Constitution on both
sides. In the end all of these disagreements on both sides led to the Civil War, in which
the North won. There were a few reasons other then the slavery issue, that the South
disagreed on and that persuaded them to succeed from the Union. Basically the North
favored a loose interpretation of the United States Constitution. They wanted to grant the
federal government increased powers. The South wanted to reserve all undefined powers to
the individual states. The North also wanted internal improvements sponsored by the
federal government. This was more roads, railroads, and canals. The South, on the other
hand, did not want these projects to be done at all. Also the North wanted to develop a
tariff. With a high tariff, it protected the Northern manufacturer. It was bad for the
South because a high tariff would not let the south trade its cotton for foreign goods.
The North also wanted a good banking and currency system and federal subsidies for
shipping and internal improvements. The South felt these were discriminatory and that they
favored Northern commercial interests. Now the main reason for the South's secession was
the Slavery issue. Basically the South wanted and needed it and the North did not want it
at all. The South was going to do anything they could to keep it. This was the issue that
overshadowed all others. At this time the labor force in the South had about 4 million
slaves. These slaves were very valuable to the slaveholding planter class. They were a
huge investment to Southerners and if taken away, could mean massive losses to everyone.
Slaves were used in the South as helpers in the fields in the cultivation of tobacco,
rice, and indigo, as well as many other jobs. The South especially needed more slaves at
this time because they were now growing more cotton then ever because of the invention of
the cotton gin. Cotton production with slaves jumped from 178,000 bales in 1810 to over
3,841,000 bales in 1860. Within that time period of 50 years the number of slaves also
rose from about 1,190,000 to over 4,000,000. The plantation owners in the South could not
understand why the North wanted slavery abolished that bad. Southerners compared it with
the wage-slave system of the North. They said that the slaves were better cared for then
the free factory workers in the North. Southerners said that slaveowners provided shelter,
food, care, and regulation for a race unable to compete in the modern world without proper
training. Many Southern preachers proclaimed that slavery was sanctioned in the Bible. But
after the American Revolution slavery really died it the North, just as it was becoming
more popular in the South. By the time of 1804 seven of the northern most states had
abolished slavery. During this time a surge of democratic reform swept the North and West.
There were demands for political equality and economic and social advances. The
Northerners goals were free public education, better salaries and working conditions for
workers, rights for women, and better treatment for criminals. The South felt these views
were not important. All of these views eventually led to an attack on the slavery system
in the South, and showed opposition to its spread into whatever new territories that were
acquired. Northerners said that slavery revoked the human right of being a free person.
Now with all these views the North set out on its quest for the complete abolition of
slavery. When new territories became available in the West the South wanted to expand and
use slavery in the newly acquired territories. But the North opposed to this and wanted to
stop the extension of slavery into new territories. The North wanted to limit the number
of slave states in the Union. But many Southerners felt that a government dominated by
free states could endanger existing slaveholdings. The South wanted to protect their
states rights. The first evidence of the North's actions came in 1819 when Missouri asked
to be admitted to the Union as a slave state. After months of discussion Congress passed
the Missouri Compromise of 1820. This compromise was legislative measures that regulated
the extension of slavery in the United States for three decades. Now the balance of 11
free states and 11 slave states was in trouble. Maine also applied for statehood in 1819,
in which it was admitted as a free state. To please the South, slavery would be prohibited
forever from Louisiana Purchase territories north of 36° 30'. Southern extremists opposed
any limit on the extension of slavery, but settled for now. Missouri and Maine were to
enter statehood simultaneously to preserve sectional equality in the Senate. For almost a
generation this Compromise seemed to settle the conflict between the North and South. But
in 1848 the Union acquired a huge piece of territory from Mexico. This opened new
opportunities for the spread of slavery for Southerners. But the distribution of these
lands in small lots speeded the development of this section, but it was disliked in the
South because it aided the free farmer than the slaveholding plantation owner. So now
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