During the 1800's, Americans in the North and South often had conflict but could no longer resolve their political disputes through compromise by the year 1860. In this time period, compromise was not an option because slavery and states rights' caused political disputes between the north and south. The two political parties in the north and south lost their ability to cooperate and by the mid 1800's increased the issue of the division of the states.The North and South in the nineteenth century were different in lifestyle and morale as well as economy. The north had a booming industrial economy while in the South, cotton was the major economic leader. Because of this congress was continuously addressing controversial matters and providing answers that did not satisfy either one side or both. The early 1800s were full of the North and the South making many attempts at reconciliation that just fell short. Among those were the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and the Great Compromise of 1850.
Other attempts led to the Tariff/Nullification Controversy, anti slavery debates in congress, and the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Whether it was one side or the other there was always someone to oppose or defy the other side. Laws put in place eventually led to the succession of the southern states and the Civil War.
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The issue of slavery became an even greater concern when the Louisiana Purchase territories were to enter the Union as states. The question was, would new territories enter the Union as slave or free states? The South wanted a balance of power. They knew that if the North were to have more free states, then slavery in the south could be facing extinction through congress.
In an attempt to conciliate with the South, the North agreed upon the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Through this slavery was banned above the 36 degrees 30 minute line and Missouri entered as a slave state and Maine a free state. For a while, it retained the balance of power. However, tempers in the south rose again later in the 1820s over high tariffs. The tariffs benefited the north but threatened southern cotton exports. In 1828 the tariff was around 50%. President Jackson modified it to around 33% in 1832 only to have South Carolina nullify it in the state. It raised the question of whether or not the federal government could legally impose protective tariffs and whether it was constitutional for a state to nullify a federal law
The political view on slavery and states rights grew as compromise between the north and south political parties began to collapse during the mid 19th century. Henry Clay stated that it is impossible for South Carolina to become an independent state. A report of the American Anti-Slavery Society was opposed to slavery naming slave owners as "man stealers" and believed that slaves should be free. Political compromise was not greatly effected by their belief but the Compromise of 1850 resulted in the Fugitive Slave Law being passed which caused the collapse in the political parties.
The issue of slavery continued to increase as compromise slowly disintegrated. Abolitionism increased by the encouragement of Frederick Douglass, a leader, who promoted freedom for all slaves. Also, "Uncle Toms Cabin" published by Harriet Beecher started up abolitionism in the North while the South to oppose against abolitionists. Senator Daniel Webster who is opposed to secession stated that the North is not complied with the Fugitive Slave Law. In addition, a New York Tribune comparing working class men in the north to southern gentlemen caused more conflict between the states over the issue of slavery. The division of the states over the issue of slavery enhanced the collapse of compromise between the North and South political parties.
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