Abraham Lincoln’s victory in the Election of 1860 was disconcerting news for the South. It was the most recent event in a string of events that seemingly endangered the southern way of life and the future of the country. At a time when many northerners suspected southern threats of secession were but a bluff, there was evidence that the country had already split and the formalities were soon to follow. Read more
Every presidential election is consequential, but the Election of 1860 would play a significant role in whether the United States would remain one nation. The division of the North and South on the issue of slavery threatened to cause a secession of the South. The result of the election would determine whether that threat would materialize and cause a Second American Revolution. Read more
Since the outbreak of the Civil War and continuing to the present day, the role of slavery in splitting America has been hotly debated. One may wonder whether there was merely a correlation between slavery and the Civil War or whether slavery was the cause. Investigating the nuances of the issue of slavery reveals that the Civil War resulted from sectionalism and slavery, which were practically synonymous.
By 1848, America had undergone a significant transformation from the America that the Founding Fathers left just a few decades before.
Reply to Elbridge Gerry: “A Landholder” [Oliver Ellsworth] IV
Connecticut Courant (Hartford), November 26, 1787
Following are excerpts from Oliver Ellsworth’s article:
“Such a body of men might be an army to defend the country in case of foreign invasion, but not a legislature, and the expence to support them would equal the whole national revenue. Read more
From the War of 1812 on, for the next few decades, the use of militias would become less and less prominent in America.
With the communications and transportation revolution came new, unforeseeable consequences. One such consequence was the spread of cholera and other contagious diseases, which would test the mettle of Americans.
Martin Van Buren, President Andrew Jackson’s hand-picked heir, would carry out many of Jackson’s policies, such as the removal of the Native Americans westward, as he was elected in the election of 1836. President Jackson also fundamentally changed the nature of the presidency.
John Calhoun, by 1831, had alienated himself from President Andrew Jackson, and he wanted to “head off talk of secession,” and on July 26, 1831, he published his “Fort Hill Address” in a South Carolina newspaper. Daniel Walker Howe, What Hath God Wrought: Transformation of America, 1815-1848, 399.
Divided government, where one branch of government is controlled by a different political party than the other branches, is a familiar concept for most Americans. The midterm elections of 1826 and 1827 brought about the first instance in American history of divided government.