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Dbq - Slavery and Selectional Attitude

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Autor:   •  January 21, 2016  •  Essay  •  926 Words (4 Pages)  •  326 Views

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DBQ- Slavery and Sectional Attitude

The topic of slavery is one that attracted many Americans during the mid 1800s, and still does to this day.The decision to either abolish slavery completely or have it legal in certain states was debatable.This debate would cause controversy between Northern states and the Southern states; to aggravate the situation, be a massive contribution to the start of the Civil War. Although more than half Northern Americans would come to the conclusion that slavery was morally wrong and “evil”, Southerners opposed this and believed it was a “blessing” and a necessity to our economy.

The country was divided into two when the topic of slavery was brought up. Abolitionists saw slavery as an evil tragedy that took on America. They said that it was immoral; that in a nation like the United States, where principles like “equality and freedom” come from, slavery is wrong and shouldn't exist. These Northerners, clearly didn't want slavery in America anymore. Abolitionists like William Lloyd Garrison came to write newspapers and books regarding slavery, its cruelty, and injustice towards African slaves.However, most Southern states that were for slavery wouldn’t agree to this. In fact, South Carolina argued that slaves in the state were far superior than factory workers in the north.Slave owners added that their slaves weren't treated quite as harshly. (1). However, runaway slaves and those who witnessed treatment towards slaves such as Frederick Douglass and Harriet Beecher Stowe would not agree to this. Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin would raise questions regarding slavery and cruelty behind it. The book portrays life as a slave and Uncle Tom’s struggle against slavery. The release of the novel furthered and changed the minds of many Northerners and Southerners that were once pro-slavery, frightening them at the horrors of being a slave. In response, Southern slave owning states banned Stowe’s novel in the region and was said to overdramatize slavery. This outraged slave owners,they claimed it was “utterly false”. The novel caused political disputes and strengthened abolitionist ideology, but only built more tension with the North. Even though it was banned, many businesses continued to sell the novel that was said to be the “greatest book of the age” (6).

Northern free-soilers in the mid 1800s, aimed towards getting rid of any cultivation produced by the hands of slaves, well aware that this would risk American economics. Hinton Helper was one to impose ideas that the North was able to provide as much commerce as the South. America had accustomed to slavery as its main contribution to the economy, slavery was unnecessary in a growing society. Helper suggested that we find other forms of obtaining wealth and America would be able to grow on any other product than just cotton. The North argued that if it was able to manufacture without slaves, then why couldn't the South do the same? (5). Slave states argued that the end of the cotton production, was the end of the its economy and commerce. It believed it was the base and roots of the the South (2). This is why it became easy to understand why so many Southern slave owners were concerned about the threat that Abraham Lincoln posed to slave states. Lincoln saw the slavery system as corrupt and the more slavery spread, the more the country drifted


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