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American History Before 1877
Research Topic: Was Slavery the Cause of Civil Wars in America?
Was Slavery the Cause of Civil Wars in America?
1. Did the adamant differences between the union and the southern states lead to civil wars in America?
2. Were the ideological differences between the south and northern states fueled the civil war?
3. What was the role of slavery in the development of the civil war?
The role of slavery in the United States civil war before 1877 has remained a controversial topic in history. The origins of the nation’s 1860–1861 slavery dilemma date back to the country’s creation. In the 1500s, early English settlers introduced a system of slavery to the western hemisphere, and colonialists increasingly relied on imported slaves from Africa. By the early 1700s, slavery meant African enslavement in British North America (Noyalas, 2021). Slave labor was used on southern plantations to produce essential crops for export, including rice, tobacco, and forest products that sustained the American colonies. Numerous Northern entrepreneurs made their fortunes in slavery or exporting slave labor goods (Jones, 2020). Slavery in Africa was essential in the foundation of Colonial America. North America grew more pro-worker and pro-farmer as time passed, especially in the decades surrounding the Civil War. Slavery was not acceptable in this worldview. Numerous Northerners resented its expansion into what they saw as the ancestral homeland of free, white men (Bothwell, 2018). The country ended up split into two, with each side believing that their ideology was fair and legitimate. The division fueled a war that shaped the history of America, and the victory of the north defined the country to what it is currently. However, the roles slavery played in the civil war is still debatable.
Bothwell, R. (2018). The Divided Ground: Indians, Settlers, and the Northern Borderland of the American Revolution; The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, & Indian Allies; The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772–1832; American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750–1804 by Alan Taylor.
Noyalas, J. A. (2021). Slavery and Freedom in the Shenandoah Valley during the Civil War Era. University Press of Florida.
Jones, J. S. (2020). Opium Slavery: Civil War Veterans and Opiate Addiction. The Journal of the Civil War Era, 10(2), 185-212.