Strong national parties in both the North and South seemed capable of resolving sectional issues. But by the late 1850s, America became more and more divided with the adoption of the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854. This act negated the Compromise of 1850 and allowed the expansion of slavery on a basis of popular sovereignty. It also "destroyed what was left of the second party system" (Divine 344). With the Whig party rapidly dissolving, the Kansas-Nebraska Act led to the birth of sectional party: The Republican Party."The Democratic Party survived, but now firmly under southern control, without the ability to act as a unifying force national force" (Divine 344).
With no national party to solve sectional issues, America quickly disbanded over the issue of slavery. While slavery is often used as the scapegoat for the cause of The American Civil War, no single issue can fully explain the reasons behind the bloody conflict. Rather, a mixture of events led to the collapse of a nation, a deadly civil war, and lasting repercussions.
There are certain moments in history that highlight the building tensions that led to the collapse of the Union. The North sought to keep the unsettled western territory of Kansas free in order to prevent Southern slave owners from gaining more power within the Federal government. The South responded by encouraging residents of Missouri to cross the border and vote to legalize slavery. The result was a small scale civil war between free-state and slave-state factions.
[...] The struggle of the civil war Many believed that the Compromise of 1850 would end the debate over slavery and prevent a war. Strong national parties in both the North and South seemed capable of resolving sectional issues. But by the late 1850s, America became more and more divided with the adoption of the Kansas- Nebraska Act of 1854. This act negated the Compromise of 1850 and allowed the expansion of slavery on a basis of popular sovereignty. It also "destroyed what was left of the second party system" (Divine 344). [...]
[...] The North was better equipped for war. They had an "enormous edge in population, industrial capacity, and railroad mileage" (Divine 366). However, the South had a clear cause for war: the defense of their homeland against the North. The Civil War lasted four bloody years and over 618,000 men died. The North won due to several causes. Northern political leadership was stronger. The Northern economy was built to last longer because of high industry and general stability. The North had a strong navy that blockaded southern ports and also took control of the Mississippi River which halted the movement of supplies to southern troops. [...]
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