• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In what ways and to what extent did the issue of expansion widen the gulf between the North and South in the period 1819-1854?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In what ways and to what extent did the issue of expansion widen the gulf between the North and South in the period 1819-1854? This period between 1819 and 1845 covers many important moments in American history. In 1819 however, there were 22 states, 11 free and 11 slave states, this was in equilibrium so both sides the North and the South were happy, despite the fact that the Northern states were pushing for any new states to become free and the Southern states vice versa. The Northern states were any states above the Mason Dixon Line and the Southern States were any below. The Mason Dixon line was an imaginary line which separated mainly Pennsylvania and Maryland. This line came into the spotlight of the Missouri Compromise of 1820; this was when the territory of Missouri requested to join the Union as a slave state. This would result in the balance of slave states and free stated not being equal, so Northern members of Congress contested the application. However, Henry Clay came to the rescue to stop the rift between North and South increasing, in the way of the Missouri Compromise this was an agreement that if a slave state was admitted, a free state would also be so that the balance stayed equal, so Maine along with Missouri was welcomed into the Union. A new line, the line of the latitude 36 30 was introduced, so any state north of the line would be automatically free and any below would be a slave state. ...read more.

Middle

The north did not agree with this war and did not agree with the existing gain, however the South wanted Polk to ask for more from Mexico, but so as not to alienate the North Polk changed his mind and didn't. The treaty of Guadeloupe Hidalgo was opposed by some of Polk's own party, which was a sign that Polk was prejudiced on the side of the South. One opponent David Wilmot, proposed an agreement which suggested that all territory gained from the war should stay free from slavery, saying it would be used to protect jobs for white men and so there would be less competition for the jobs. This was put to congress and was almost passed with all Northern congress men voting for the idea and all Southern against. This led to the idea of the south seceding from the union completely. The debate over this idea shows how the slavery was amplifying the political gulf between the North and the South, as secession was suggested. In order to bridge the gulf between North and South, the theory of popular sovereignty was suggested by Lewis Cass and Stephen Douglas. They said that the answer to all the problems would be to let the individual territories about to become states choose whether they wanted to be free or slave states. Many thought this was a good idea and the fairest, but one such problem of this was that it inferred that the Missouri Compromise would then be unconstitutional as it shad said that all states North of the latitude line of 36 30 would be free and all below would be slave states. ...read more.

Conclusion

He also believed that the South would not mind if the states would get to chose because if they did choose slavery, then that was an area which has allowed slavery to expand. The North, however were very unhappy as this bill opened the idea of all the new territories possibly becoming slave states. Some Northerners depicted the bill as a betrayal of the whole spirit of America as a land of opportunity and the American dreams of travelling west and making a fortune by labour as the allowance of slaves would mean that white people would have to compete for jobs. On the other hand, the South, were primarily content with the Bill, but after the criticism of the North they became desperate to pass the bill for southern honour, a very important perception in the South. The Bill led to sectional voting and the bill was passed to the shock of the North. The 1854 elections caused the Democratic Party to suffer severely as the Northern Democrats thought their party was representing the interests of the South at their sacrifices. Before the Mexican War in 1846, events had shown that expansion created grave dangers for the United States of America. Expansion could all too easily ignite sectional jealousy and result in confrontations. In 1849-50, some Southerners had even talked of leaving the Union all together. The 1850 compromise had succeeded in resolving the problems of the time, but not the underlying problem of slavery expansion. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. To what extent was independence a gift from Britain.

    self-government'20must be seen as significant when considering Britain's economic and military dependence. This also reflects the discrepancy between Britain's position and the ideological shift away from imperialism. The war against expansionist powers such as Germany and the post World War One promotion of self-determination in Europe had a dramatic effect

  2. Westward Expansion.

    new life or increase their wealth, the American government under went a policy of removal. Indians were removed from land that was ready to be settled in order to make the land more attractive to settlers. This policy of removal to unfit land came into precedence in1812 after the Battle Of Tippecanoe where the Indians attempted resistance.

  1. History of the United States

    and thus, that the Missouri Compromise line had been unconstitutional all along. Thousands of northerners now became convinced that a "slave conspiracy" had infiltrated the national government and that it intended to make slavery a nationwide institution. In 1860 the political system became completely fragmented.

  2. American History.

    *Problems under the Articles of Confederation* - Finance was the biggest problem faced by both the state and nat'l gov'ts. First they just tried printing currency, which worked at first b/c there was high demand for supplies and goods during the war.

  1. The Nature of Southern Segregation

    Jimmy Lee Jackson, a young Black man trying to prevent his mother from being hurt by a police officer, was killed by a state trooper. In response to Jackson's death, SCLC proposed a symbolic march from Selma to Montgomery, the state capital.

  2. The Not So Free.

    was just playing along" Quickly replied the major who didn't want to admit to being worried as the general would never let him live it down. "Its good to see you John but we have to save the chat for another time we have a major problem" Says Jack calmly but very quickly.

  1. The 50 year period between 1900 and 1950 remains as perhaps the most important ...

    and a plan that would bring the country out of the Depression. The New Deal called for the Three R's: relief, recovery, and reform. In the first 100 days in office, Roosevelt and the infamous Hundred Days Congress pushed legislation through at a swift rate in an effort to stop the bleeding the Crash had caused.

  2. The Prelude to the 1975 War and the Cairo Agreement.

    Ten days later, 16 Christian civilians were killed and 23 others wounded in an unprovoked attack causing a mass exodus of the Christians from the Bekaa towards Zahl´┐Ż, Beirut and Jounieh. It was at this juncture that the Army Lebanese began to disintegrate completely.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work