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“Primary Documents in American History.” Missouri Compromise: Primary Documents of American History (Virtual Programs & Services, Library of Congress). N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. <http://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/ourdocs/Missouri.html>.
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All throughout the early 1800s the country was separated in many different areas and arguing over irritable issues. Mainly between the North and the South, they both had a lot of issues and wanted to do what they felt was best for the people. Slavery was the more significant topic than any other topics like social structures, expansion, etc. Many of these topics played a role with the diversity of the country that led to desperate measures. This was an issue that continued all throughout the mid 1800’s. Vastly, slavery was played a big factor in the division between the North and South. The country was divided into two groups, which were known as slave holders and abolitionists. Due to the desire of the south they wanted to acquire slaves for cheap, the North didn’t feel at ease with the situation, so the two groups were separated geographically.
On the other hand, the North was not any economy based off agriculture or unskilled laborers because there economy was not dependent upon slaves. The North felt that there was no need for slaves, and they didn’t see slavery as fair or dignified. The South relied on slaves as a base of production; they use them to operate large farms and large cotton plantations. Many people tried to come up with a solution to the issue of slavery with compositions and bills that lay down laws to come into agreement with both sides. What made it happen was the Missouri Compromise. This document was able to set the standards during the time. It was also able to divide the country into two different groups geographically by a system called the 36 degree 30 minute line. This bill clearly stated that no states above the proposed line shall have slavery, with exception to those already in existence.
This meant that all new states being brought into the country from different directions had an opportunity to have slavery if they lay below the line. Of course, the south wasn’t behind the idea, as it allowed the northern non-slave states to outnumber the southern slave-states in the south as far as representation in the government was concerned. Additionally to the slavery controversy was the moral issue and whether or not it was inhumane, and an injustice to the Negro. I don’t see how the North cared about the southern slave, because they failed to recognize slaves as people, and much less as citizens. So, that makes me wonder how could you treat another human as if they were non-human, but still complain about their enslavement by other people for the benefit of your own country. A couple of different articles that could relate to this would be the “Appeal to the women of the south” and “Slavery as it is.”
These two articles discuss slavery in its wrong doing, and reasons why it should be extinguished. Both articles see slavery from a Christianity standpoint, and did not view it as something with the bible. In “Appeal to the women of the South,” there are all of quotes that are used directly from the Bible citing precise examples of slavery being wrong and an abomination to this country. Pertaining to sectionalism, another degree of nation division was expansion and the issues involved with it. The nation was growing at a rapid pace with young people, and different views and ideas of world supremacy. You could say people’s views were split down the middle into two groups; the expansionists, and the non-expansionists. These two groups were not necessarily separate geographically as the north and south pertaining to slavery, but they were divided by the Mason-Dixon Line. When people tried to all come together and support the war of 1812, they advertised with the thought of a new found land, and how our country could be so much bigger.
Sadly, the people began to get in tuned with war, and boasting about the acquiring of new found land, the noticed the struggles of the war, and realizing that our country was inexperienced and weak, they people began to lose hope. It wasn’t a dying need to attain land, and the people were not ecstatic about the war of England. It would have been an honor for the people to be able to say we beat England, but they knew this wasn’t the case. More often people who fantasized these ideas were typically northerners, in standard cities, rather than small agricultural communities. Besides the North, the south had a lot of fortune coming their way if they acquired more land. Compared to the North, the south was a more rural community, so they saw land as a great need, and were very passionate about the nation’s abilities in the war.
As it all comes down to it, the war was won, but land didn’t result to a win or lost. As I touch up back on my topic, internal improvement divided the country by political parties. These parties consisted of republicans and federalists. Different perspectives on both sides were mixed, and they didn’t have that many geographical divisions. Another example of this would be in the Maysville Road Article. It was about a suggestion of a road being built with federal money, which resulted in a dispute. The government suggested that the road was for the wellbeing of people, and allowed an easy route through the mountains of Kentucky. Numerous amounts of people didn’t like the idea because it’s not presented fairly to each state.
There was any inconsistent amount of money being distributed to different states including non-uniform benefits. This rapidly begins to make distant of the political parties, and create a lot of unwanted tension. Concluding this dispute, the federalist came out victorious, and the road was never constructed. Even though this didn’t turn out as planned, it shows the strive and determination in our nation since its apprehension. All of the examples I used represents the issues in which played a big duty in sectionalism, and the division of the United States of America.
In conclusion, the dispute of slavery was one of the major causes of the growing sectionalism before the civil war. Countless amounts of bills and sacrifices were made to make at ease the different viewpoints of the free and slave states. All of this resulted in the increases of sectionalism in the U.S. In the end, the government wasn’t able to be not relied upon nor stiff. The inconsistent views of slaver have to fade away for sectionalism to be gone and support the country.
Courtney from Study Moose
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