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ONE MAN'S CONTRIBUTION TO STARTING A WAR

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  • carlw4514@yahoo.com
    Just a little tidbit here from http://usinfo.state.gov/usa/infousa/facts/history/ch6.htm#compromise . How much did one man have to do with starting the war
    Message 1 of 44 , Aug 9, 2001
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      Just a little tidbit here from
      http://usinfo.state.gov/usa/infousa/facts/history/ch6.htm#compromise .
      How much did one man have to do with starting the war (Douglas)? At
      least it could be said he destroyed the Whig party, I am starting to
      think. The tidbit follows:

      [...] "Under terms of the Missouri Compromise of 1820, the entire
      region was closed to slavery. The Compromise of 1850, however,
      inadvertently reopened the question. Dominant slave-holding elements
      in Missouri, objected to letting Kansas become a free territory, for
      their state would then have three free-soil neighbors (Illinois, Iowa
      and Kansas). They feared the prospect of their state being forced to
      become a free state as well. For a time, the prospect of their state
      being forced to become a free state as well. For a time, Missourians
      in Congress, backed by Southerners, blocked all efforts to organize
      the region.
      At this point, Stephen A. Douglas, the Democratic senior
      senator from Illinois, stirred up a storm by proposing a bill, the
      Kansas-Nebraska Act, which enraged all free-soil supporters. Douglas
      argued that the Compromise of 1850, which left Utah and New Mexico
      free to resolve the slavery issue for themselves, superseded the
      Missouri Compromise. His plan called for two territories, Kansas and
      Nebraska, and permitted settlers to carry slaves into them. The
      inhabitants themselves were to determine whether they should enter the
      Union as free or slave states.
      Northerners accused Douglas of currying favor with the South in
      order to gain the presidency in 1856. Angry debates marked the
      progress of the bill. The free-soil press violently denounced it.
      Northern clergymen assailed it. Businessmen who had hitherto
      befriended the South suddenly turned about-face. Yet in May 1854, the
      Kansas-Nebraska Act passed the Senate amid the boom of cannon fired by
      Southern enthusiasts. When Douglas subsequently visited Chicago to
      speak in his own defense, the ships in the harbor lowered their flags
      to half-mast, the church bells tolled for an hour and a crowd of
      10,000 hooted so loudly that he could not make himself heard. [!]
      The immediate results of Douglas's ill-starred measure were
      momentous. The Whig Party, which had straddled the question of slavery
      expansion, sank to its death, and in its stead a powerful new
      organization arose, the Republican Party, whose primary demand was
      that slavery be excluded from all the territories. In 1856, it
      nominated John Fremont, whose expeditions into the Far West had won
      him renown. Although Fremont lost the election, the
      new Republican Party swept a great part of the North. Such free-soil
      leaders as Salmon P. Chase and William Seward exerted greater
      influence than ever. Along with them appeared a tall, lanky Illinois
      attorney, Abraham Lincoln.
      The flow of both Southern slave holders and antislavery families
      into Kansas resulted in armed conflict, and soon the territory was
      being called "bleeding Kansas." Other events brought the nation still
      closer to upheaval: notably, the Supreme Court's infamous 1857
      decision concerning Dred Scott. [...]
    • hartshje@aol.com
      Hey, maybe we ll start a NEW trend! Joe
      Message 44 of 44 , Aug 13, 2001
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        Hey, maybe we'll start a NEW trend!

        Joe

        --- In civilwarwest@y..., CashG79@a... wrote:
        > Joe,
        >
        > Are you sure we're allowed to agree completely in this group? :)
        >
        > Regards,
        > Cash
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